Inevitable: Obama orders military trials at Gitmo to begin again

posted at 4:57 pm on March 7, 2011 by Allahpundit

It really was inevitable. One of the last gasps of the Pelosi Congress in December was to add a provision to the new defense bill barring federal funds for the transfer of Gitmo prisoners to the U.S. for any reason, including trials. (Some House Democrats called it revenge on Obama for caving to the GOP on tax cuts for the rich. That should tell you how seriously they take this subject.) With no other options for trying detainees, the White House started whispering to the Times in January that O’s original order barring further proceedings there would have to be lifted and that Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, one of the planners of the Cole bombing, would likely be first up. And now, just six weeks later, here we are:

The move signals another defeat for Obama, who pledged to close the terrorist detention facility in Cuba within one year of taking office.

In a fact sheet, the White House said Obama “remains committed” to closing the facility, but the president’s decision to lift the ban on military commissions signals the unlikelihood that Obama will successfully transfer all of the prisoners in Cuba…

The White House said that the president ordered changes in how the commissions were run to make them more fair.

“The administration, working on a bipartisan basis with members of Congress, has successfully enacted key reforms, such as a ban on the use of statements taken as a result of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment and a better system for handling classified information,” the White House said.

This is a “defeat” for Obama? Really? He’s breaking a campaign pledge, granted, but he’s got an airtight alibi: Congress won’t give him the money to carry out his plan. So in the meantime, he’ll keep Gitmo open — which, according to a CNN poll taken last year, 60 percent of the public supports — and maybe he’ll nail down a conviction against a filthbag jihadi like Nashiri, against whom we have plenty of evidence even without the information obtained during waterboarding. He’ll earn a political windfall for doing that, with even some Democrats coming around on the utility of military commissions, and that’ll make it easier for him to avoid the exceedingly risky prospect of trials for detainees in civilian court. And if the worst happens and Nashiri is somehow acquitted at the Gitmo tribunal, Obama can say that he was simply using the procedure handed to him by counterterror warrior George Bush. This is, it appears, all upside for him politically except among the small subset of his base that still pretends to care about this issue, and none of them will be voting GOP next year. (Nor, needless to say, will the GOP nominee be attacking Obama for keeping Gitmo open.) So how is he losing here, exactly? As America’s new poet laureate would say — duh, winning.

It’s enough to make me wonder if that funding cut-off by House Democrats wasn’t something quietly urged by the White House itself. I’ll leave you with this oldie but goodie from Thomas Joscelyn debunking the left’s eternal talking point that Gitmo is some sort of linchpin of Al Qaeda propaganda. Wasn’t true in December and, with the “Arab spring” creating all sorts of new political fault lines in the Middle East for jihadis to try to exploit, it’s even less true now.


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Where is Cindy Sheehan to protest Obama for this travesty?

portlandon on March 7, 2011 at 4:59 PM

What, not blaming Bush?

Kini on March 7, 2011 at 5:01 PM

They said if I voted for McCain in 2008 we would end up with the 3rd Bush term and a moron for a vice president.

They were right

darwin-t on March 7, 2011 at 5:02 PM

Apology to Geore W. Bush in………Never minus one, never minus two………

Hypocrite!

VikingGoneWild on March 7, 2011 at 5:02 PM

Uh oh. You know what this means? Obama radicalized thousands of Muslims today with this announcement. Way to go, Obama! Creating more terrorists, just like Bush did!

Weight of Glory on March 7, 2011 at 5:03 PM

As America’s new poet laureate would say — duh, winning.

Feh.

ted c on March 7, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Ha ha…. the halo in that photo makes him look even more like Alfred E. Neumann.

UltimateBob on March 7, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Uh oh. You know what this means? Obama radicalized thousands of Muslims today with this announcement. Way to go, Obama! Creating more terrorists, just like Bush did!

Weight of Glory on March 7, 2011 at 5:03 PM

But muslims cant be terrorists, so how can they be radicalized….

the_nile on March 7, 2011 at 5:06 PM

This is not going to help with Obama’s outreach to the Muslim world.

kingsjester on March 7, 2011 at 5:07 PM

But muslims cant be terrorists, so how can they be radicalized….

the_nile on March 7, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Good point.

Weight of Glory on March 7, 2011 at 5:08 PM

What, not blaming Bush?

Kini on March 7, 2011 at 5:01 PM

I blame Halliburton/Cheney/Bushitler/bloodforoil

NO NUKES!

Wait, what were we protesting?

Laura in Maryland on March 7, 2011 at 5:08 PM

What about the Geneva Conventions and their “human rights”? Torture! Torture!…spittle…spittle….BOOOOSH!
/libtard moonbat circa 2008

DeathB4Tyranny on March 7, 2011 at 5:09 PM

Eh, PBHO could create a Gitmo Czar and with it have a virtually unlimited and unaccountable budget to do as he pleases. But the man saw the poll numbers and he was shaken to his syrupy, waffle core.

Bishop on March 7, 2011 at 5:10 PM

This is not going to help with Obama’s outreach to the Muslim world.

kingsjester on March 7, 2011 at 5:07 PM

KJ – you’re always on my morning read list. If it weren’t for you, my bloodpressure might be normal ;)

Laura in Maryland on March 7, 2011 at 5:12 PM

How will this help Michelle’s children?

j_galt on March 7, 2011 at 5:13 PM

Which, just shows America (Americans) are just down right mean!

Look at what you have reduced teh WON to.

Sir Napsalot on March 7, 2011 at 5:14 PM

If there are going to be military trials, then there will be military convictions, with military sentences (life in prison) which means there will have to be a prison in which to confine those so convicted.

So I guess we’ll have our own Spandau prison where the last jihadie dies of old age in two or three hundred years.

Skandia Recluse on March 7, 2011 at 5:16 PM

Hey, let’s let Moochelle create the diet plan for the muslim terrorists!!

SouthernGent on March 7, 2011 at 5:16 PM

Must be that Obama charisma, even when he loses he wins.

fourdeucer on March 7, 2011 at 5:18 PM

It really was inevitable. One of the last gasps of the Pelosi Congress in December was to add a provision to the new defense bill barring federal funds for the transfer of Gitmo prisoners to the U.S. for any reason, including trials. (Some House Democrats called it revenge on Obama for caving to the GOP on tax cuts for the rich.
==============================================

So,Pelosi fires a last political salvo,and it looks like
Gitmo took a direct hit!!

Team Right,needs to man up a tad,as its apparent,that
Team Left,have no problem in lashing out!!

canopfor on March 7, 2011 at 5:19 PM

If there was any justice, GWB should call the media to his home then walk out on this front porch, bend over and drop his draws….then shoot them a bird.

rickyricardo on March 7, 2011 at 5:23 PM

I wonder what traps and political minefields Pelosi
has weaved throughout the Hopey HealthCare Bill,ready
to throw a monkey wrench,in to gawd only knows what or
where!!!!

canopfor on March 7, 2011 at 5:23 PM

If there was any justice, GWB should call the media to his home then walk out on this front porch, bend over and drop his drawers….then shoot them a bird.

rickyricardo on March 7, 2011 at 5:23 PM

OT: New 9/11 vid

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=7f8_1299525596

Ugly on March 7, 2011 at 5:24 PM

JTF-GTMO Website*
==================

Joint Task Force Guantanamo Mission
************************************
JTF Guantanamo conducts safe, humane, legal and transparent care and custody of detainees, including those convicted by military commission and those ordered released. We conduct intelligence collection, analysis and dissemination for the protection of detainees and personnel working in JTF Guantanamo facilities and in support of the Global War on Terror. We provide support to the Office of Military Commissions and support law enforcement and war crimes investigations.

http://www.jtfgtmo.southcom.mil/

canopfor on March 7, 2011 at 5:27 PM

I blame Halliburton/Cheney/Bushitler/bloodforoil

NO NUKES!

Wait, what were we protesting?

Laura in Maryland on March 7, 2011 at 5:08 PM

I dunno, but at least we’re not in school today huh?

44Magnum on March 7, 2011 at 5:32 PM

Grow Fins to announce Obama the most evil man on earth in 5…4…3…2…

Scrappy on March 7, 2011 at 5:32 PM

Something about a broken clock comes to mind.

Rovin on March 7, 2011 at 5:35 PM

GITMO’s run by the Navy, so I say instead of when anchor chain gets decommished due to age and stress cracks, they use it to store the convicted GITMO detainees in Davy Jones’s locker.

ARRRRRRRRRR!!!!

44Magnum on March 7, 2011 at 5:36 PM

From Kuwiat News Agency

Obama orders resumption of military trials at Gitmo
Politics 3/8/2011 12:32:00 AM
===============================

WASHINGTON, March 7 (KUNA) — The White House announced Monday that it was resuming military commission trials at Guantanamo Bay detention camp, ending a ban imposed by US President Obama when he took office two years ago.
Obama said in a statement that “from the beginning of my Administration, the United States has worked to bring terrorists to justice consistent with our commitment to protect the American people and uphold our values”.

“Today, I am announcing several steps that broaden our ability to bring terrorists to justice, provide oversight for our actions, and ensure the humane treatment of detainees,” he added.

He voiced his strong belief “that the American system of justice is a key part of our arsenal in the war against Al Qaeda and its affiliates, and we will continue to draw on all aspects of our justice system – including Article III Courts – to ensure that our security and our values are strengthened”.
(more….)

http://www.kuna.net.kw/NewsAgenciesPublicSite/ArticleDetails.aspx?id=2150479&Language=en

canopfor on March 7, 2011 at 5:38 PM

his is a “defeat” for Obama? Really? He’s breaking a campaign pledge, granted, but he’s got an airtight alibi: Congress won’t give him the money to carry out his plan.

Absolutely it’s a defeat for Obama. Or at least it’s a defeat for the ignorant & preternaturally naive Candidate Obama who ever thought he could bring those detainees onto US soil with the blessing of either Congressional Repubs or Dems in the first place.

It was a childish fantasy that he could just snap his fingers & close GITMO, as adults then in charge patiently tried to explain to him at the time.

So, once again Barack Obama ends up taking 2 years of non-stop flailing to finally deduce what it took members of the GWB administration 5 minutes to figure out they themselves had no other choice but to do – a decision for which they were roundly condemned as heartless fascists by a Senator named Barack.

And for having the smarts to immediately figure out the flamingly obvious (i.e., that no politician in either party would stand for having those detainees in their districts) in the first place, the Bushies were Candidate Obama’s version of Olbermann’s Worst People In The World.

This is certainly a defeat for the idea that Barack Obama is some kind of genius, that’s for sure.

leilani on March 7, 2011 at 5:41 PM

Grow Fins to announce Obama the most evil man on earth in 5…4…3…2…

Scrappy on March 7, 2011 at 5:32 PM

you mean Grow “drive by” Fins?
Comes here, rants some twisted stuff then leaves pounding profusely on keyboard.

Electrongod on March 7, 2011 at 5:42 PM

*placing the EO in the circular file*

cmsinaz on March 7, 2011 at 5:47 PM

1 – Good.

2 – *points and laughs at Obama and all the frothing Bush-hating whackjob hypocrites all over the freaking world that ever uttered “Gitmo” with a nasty tone in their voice pre-Obama that will remain utterly silent now*

Midas on March 7, 2011 at 5:57 PM

Grofins/bifido/pickone

BigWyo on March 7, 2011 at 6:00 PM

Midas on March 7, 2011 at 5:57 PM

You need to hang out over at Firedoglake more often. I go in feet first to read the comments and fire some volleys now and then, they are pissed off over this in a way that warms my black heart.

Bishop on March 7, 2011 at 6:17 PM

Bishop on March 7, 2011 at 6:17 PM

God bless ya for hanging out over there…

cmsinaz on March 7, 2011 at 6:31 PM

Whenever I see a Gitmo story, I pull another Vince Flynn book off the shelf and read it with relish. My favorite is when he goes to Pakistan and “interrogates” the terrorists. He lines them up (3 I think), stands behind them with a pistol, and says if you don’t talk to me I will shoot you. The first guy doesn’t talk, so he shoots him in the head! Terrorist #3 talks! Ha! Ha!

Mr_Magoo on March 7, 2011 at 8:18 PM

But Obama refuses to try Khalid Sheikh Mohammad by military trial. When the 9/11 families asked why he wasn’t going to be tried by the tribunal the military counsel said the Obama Administration needed to study it further. Is that two years of ‘smart power’? You need two years to determine where to try the 9/11 mastermind (disregarding that he had eight years before then to make that determination). My feeling is that Obama is waiting for a second term, God forbid, where he will just have no political consequences for trying KSM in federal court in New York.

eaglewingz08 on March 8, 2011 at 7:26 AM