Gitmo looking better all the time
posted at 9:08 am on May 2, 2009 by Ed Morrissey
Barack Obama promised to close the detention center at Guantanamo Bay and end the military tribunal process that he opposed as a Senator for its detainees if elected President. After taking the oath of office, Obama fulfilled that promise by ordering the shutdown of Gitmo and halting the tribunals. Now, three months later, the Obama administration can’t find nations willing to accept murderous, lunatic terrorists as guests, and suddenly those military tribunals look pretty good:
The Obama administration is moving toward reviving the military commission system for prosecuting Guantánamo detainees, which was a target of critics during the Bush administration, including Mr. Obama himself.
Officials said the first public moves could come as soon as next week, perhaps in filings to military judges at the United States naval base at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, outlining an administration plan to amend the Bush administration’s system to provide more legal protections for terrorism suspects.
Continuing the military commissions in any form would probably prompt sharp criticism from human rights groups as well as some of Mr. Obama’s political allies because the troubled system became an emblem of the effort to use Guantánamo to avoid the American legal system.
Does anyone else find it fascinating that the Obama administration leaked this on a Friday night? I suspect that they know just how much flak they will take over this reversal, especially in the media. This seems designed to bury the story in a weekend cycle, with a prayer that a big event occurs between now and Monday to keep it buried.
Maybe Madonna will get married again. Who knows?
You have to love this passage (emphasis mine):
When President Obama suspended Guantánamo cases after his inauguration on Jan. 20, many participants said the military commission system appeared dead. But in recent days a variety of officials involved in the deliberations say that after administration lawyers examined many of the cases, the mood shifted toward using military commissions to prosecute some detainees, perhaps including those charged with coordinating the Sept. 11 attacks.
“The more they look at it,” said one official, “the more commissions don’t look as bad as they did on Jan. 20.”
Hmm. Maybe they should have looked at it a little more before running for President on the promise of ending the only effective manner of trying terrorists captured in foreign countries. Many of us looked at it in much more detail, including Congress. Maybe Barack Obama wasn’t familiar with that, but that was the job he supposedly held before this one – the one where he postured for the Left while his colleagues in both parties worked to fashion a practical system of military tribunals to make sure that we locked up terrorists without damaging national security.
But, hey, actual governing is hard — harder than voting present, and certainly harder than casting politically-expedient votes when you know it won’t affect the outcome.
We’re waiting for our apologies. We may have to wait for a Friday night/Saturday morning news cycle to get them, but we’re owed a big apology from this President.
Update: Jules Crittenden spits Cheerios all over his laptop screen. Jules, I was always more of a Shredded Wheat fan myself, but fortunately this morning I had raisin toast. It’s easier to clean up, and easier to swallow than all of the Hopeandchange this administration’s providing. The times, they are a-changing … back.