Done: Obama signs order closing Gitmo within a year; Update: McCain, Graham support
posted at 1:00 pm on January 22, 2009 by Allahpundit
Just one of four you’ll see executed here; the second ends enhanced interrogations by the CIA. Note the third, though, establishing a task force to review all detention policies and procedures. If that “classified loophole” ends up being quietly carved out later, I assume that’s where it’ll come from.
WaPo’s touting its new poll showing that 53 percent support closing the prison, a perilously slim majority for so momentous a decision. Gallup, in fact, finds that 45 percent support keeping it open compared to just 35 percent who want it closed; among independents it’s 48 and 32, respectively. The stakes for Obama from Bush speechwriter Marc Thiessen:
During the campaign, Obama described the techniques used to prevent these attacks as “torture.” He promised that if elected, he would “have the Army Field Manual govern interrogation techniques for all United States Government personnel and contractors.” If he follows through, he will effectively kill a program that stopped al-Qaeda from launching another Sept. 11-style attack. It was easy for Obama the candidate to criticize the CIA program. But as president, what will he do when the next senior al-Qaeda leader — with actionable intelligence on plots to strike our homeland — is captured and refuses to talk? Will the president allow the CIA to question this terrorist using enhanced interrogation techniques? If Obama refuses and our country is attacked, he will bear responsibility.
Well, no, Al Qaeda will bear responsibility, a point to which the left will suddenly awaken after blaming Bush for every IED that went off in Iraq. But not everyone will see it that way, and they won’t all be Republicans: Remember, even a progressive as enlightened as Madam Speaker was cool with “torture” after 9/11.
Update: Right out of the chute, cover from Maverick and his crony-in-chief.
“We support President Obama’s decision to close the prison at Guantanamo, reaffirm America’s adherence to the Geneva Conventions, and begin a process that will, we hope, lead to the resolution of all cases of Guantanamo detainees,” McCain and Graham said in a statement…
“Present at Guantanamo are a number of detainees who have been cleared for release but have found no foreign country willing to accept them,” the senators said. “Other detainees have been deemed too dangerous for release, but the sensitive nature of the evidence makes prosecution difficult. The military’s proper role in processing detainees held on the battlefield at Bagram, Afghanistan, and other military prisons around the world must be defended, but that is left unresolved. Also unresolved is the type of judicial process that would replace the military commissions. We believe the military commissions should have been allowed to continue their work.”