Tag Archives: Guantanamo

Guantánamo: The President could close it tomorrow if he really wants to

Guantánamo: The President could close it tomorrow if he really wants to

“Congress did amend the National Defense Authorization Act three years ago to prohibit funding for the transfer of any Guantánamo detainee to the U.S. It also prohibited funding for transfers to other countries, unless the Defense Secretary personally certified that the transferred detainee would never engage in terrorist activity. Because no one can give such a personal assurance, that provision effectively blocked transfers. But Congress then amended the law to allow the Secretary to waive that requirement and to transfer detainees to other countries if he finds (1) that the receiving country will take steps to ‘substantially mitigate’ the risk that the detainee will engage in terrorist activity, and (2) that the transfer is in U.S. national security interests.”

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Americans need to see the violence of war, police and torture

Americans need to see the violence of war, police and torture

“We constantly fail to acknowledge the atrocities of war, the real side of violence on our streets, and the grave human rights abuses that our own government is committing.”

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President Obama’s Speech on the Future of the War on Terror

President Obama’s Speech on the Future of the War on Terror

“This last point is critical, because much of the criticism about drone strikes – at home and abroad – understandably centers on reports of civilian casualties. There is a wide gap between U.S. assessments of such casualties, and non-governmental reports. Nevertheless, it is a hard fact that U.S. strikes have resulted in civilian casualties, a risk that exists in all wars. For the families of those civilians, no words or legal construct can justify their loss. For me, and those in my chain of command, these deaths will haunt us as long as we live, just as we are haunted by the civilian casualties that have occurred through conventional fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq.”

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