Coming next: family visits at Gitmo?

posted at 12:15 pm on May 12, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

One of the key assets to the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay is its remote location.  There are no roads to Gitmo, only sea and air passages that are heavily guarded by the US military.  It isolates terrorist detainees in such a secure fashion as to keep them from communicating with outsiders without strict controls, and it keeps outsiders from crowding into the area and interfering with operations designed to keep the most dangerous terrorists captured in the war on terror secure and harmless.

So why not invite their families to drop in from time to time?

The Pentagon is considering allowing the families of detainees at Guantanamo Bay to visit them, an unprecedented step to ease the isolation of inmates who in some cases have been held at the U.S. facility for close to a decade, according to congressional aides.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), which monitors conditions at the military prison in Cuba and facilitates videoconferences between detainees and their families, has been in serious discussions with the Pentagon about a visitation program, the aides said.

On one hand, as the Washington Post points out, this may be good news.  If the Obama administration thought they could get Gitmo closed in the near- to mid-term future, they probably wouldn’t bother evaluating such a proposal.  The lower-risk detainees would get sent home, where family visits would either be unnecessary or someone else’s problem, while the high-risk detainees (like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, for instance) would get sent to the US, where their families wouldn’t be allowed anyway.

On the other hand, Gitmo isn’t a civil prison.  It’s a military detention facility that holds enemies of the United States.  While we are obligated to treat them humanely, we are not obligated to set up visitation schedules and access to American military bases for their relatives.  The Post reports that the idea would be to ask another country to stage the visitors, but who would that be?  Does Mexico want families of jihadis gaining access to their country, and considering the state of security along our southern border, would we want that either?   Other choices would be Jamaica, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and, er, Venezuela, among others.

Republicans are now proposing to add a rider to the defense budget authorization that would prevent any money from being spent on Gitmo Visitor Days.  If we can’t get common sense to prevail, then let’s make sure we don’t spend a cent on this silly idea.


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I’m thinking the old roach motel, they check in but they don’t check out.

Hog Wild on May 12, 2011 at 12:18 PM

Winning!

Shy Guy on May 12, 2011 at 12:18 PM

Will there be a computer program to schedule conjugal visits for multiple wives?

Drained Brain on May 12, 2011 at 12:20 PM

Will there be a computer program to schedule conjugal visits for multiple wives?

Drained Brain on May 12, 2011 at 12:20 PM

I’m sure the Excel spreadsheets are already set up.

cynccook on May 12, 2011 at 12:21 PM

Uhhhh….. NO!

Khun Joe on May 12, 2011 at 12:21 PM

Hey…lets not.

BobMbx on May 12, 2011 at 12:21 PM

Cool, I like the idea of making things easier for savages who would gladly hack my family apart with a piece of jagged angle iron.

The Pentagon should also form a softball league for the terrorists, they can travel around the U.S. and play other prison teams, maybe get some nice team jerseys emblazoned with a logo of a kneeling man having his head chopped off.

Bishop on May 12, 2011 at 12:23 PM

How about Osama swimming lessons as well?

I could get excited about that!

txdoc on May 12, 2011 at 12:26 PM

Only if it is to view their hangings.

Which are years overdue.

profitsbeard on May 12, 2011 at 12:26 PM

“The Pentagon is considering allowing the families of detainees at Guantanamo Bay to visit them…”

‘The Pentagon’ is a building…

WHO is considering allowing the families of detainees at Guantanamo Bay to vist them?

Seven Percent Solution on May 12, 2011 at 12:28 PM

family visits?

really?

ted c on May 12, 2011 at 12:30 PM

Who exactly is going to pay the cost of flying some Pakistani/Yemeni/Saudi/Afghan shepherd/camel driver/goat herder (s) to Cuba?

Blaise on May 12, 2011 at 12:31 PM

The Pentagon should also form a softball league for the terrorists, they can travel around the U.S. and play other prison teams, maybe get some nice team jerseys emblazoned with a logo of a kneeling man having his head chopped off.

Bishop on May 12, 2011 at 12:23 PM

or, they could call themselves ‘the jets’…

think about it.

ted c on May 12, 2011 at 12:31 PM

If the artillery range is still in and active in Gitmo it would make for some interesting…. oh, never mind.

fourdeucer on May 12, 2011 at 12:31 PM

Will there be a computer program to schedule conjugal visits for multiple wives?

Drained Brain on May 12, 2011 at 12:20 PM

Now that’s just downright funny…

golfmann on May 12, 2011 at 12:33 PM

‘The Pentagon’ is a building…

… WHO is considering allowing the families of detainees at Guantanamo Bay to vist them?

Seven Percent Solution on May 12, 2011 at 12:28 PM

“The Pentagon” is like “The White House”. Both have a single civilian leader. Who might that be?

SKYFOX on May 12, 2011 at 12:33 PM

Will there be a computer program to schedule conjugal visits for multiple wives?

Drained Brain on May 12, 2011 at 12:20 PM

How about cage matches on pay per view? The winner gets to not have sex with their nasty, unwashed jihadi spouse.

SKYFOX on May 12, 2011 at 12:35 PM

Do we have that poison capsule technology the put in “Snake” Plissken? Put em in these guys during a physical and set them free.

Greed on May 12, 2011 at 12:38 PM

I’m for it……but they have to stay

thebrokenrattle on May 12, 2011 at 12:39 PM

Do the victims of terrorism get to spend time with their families?

capejasmine on May 12, 2011 at 12:39 PM

Figures “The Obama Administration” is involved.

GarandFan on May 12, 2011 at 12:44 PM

“The detention facilities at Guantánamo for individuals covered by this order shall be closed as soon as practicable, and no later than 1 year from the date of this order.”
 
- Executive Order, January 2009

 
Serious question- The president’s EO has been violated. “Shall” has a different meaning than “should” and it’s not negotiable.
 
Who gets in trouble, and how?

rogerb on May 12, 2011 at 12:44 PM

SEAL Team 6 belongs to the family of man.

Perhaps they could drop over for a quick hello.

Bruno Strozek on May 12, 2011 at 12:50 PM

Who gets in trouble, and how?

rogerb on May 12, 2011 at 12:44 PM

Silly rogerb. Bush, of course.

SKYFOX on May 12, 2011 at 12:52 PM

What is your exact location, Prime Minister, we would like to send you our reply via special carrier-launched airmail courier.

Bishop on May 12, 2011 at 12:53 PM

I suppose our taxpayer dollars will be used for this

Capitalist Infidel on May 12, 2011 at 12:54 PM

I’m waiting for this bunch of clowns to decide that punishment for crimes is a violation of basic human rights.

John Deaux on May 12, 2011 at 12:55 PM

SEAL Team 6 belongs to the family of man.

Perhaps they could drop over for a quick hello.

Bruno Strozek on May 12, 2011 at 12:50 PM

You’re onto something here…I like it.

GITMO: Live Fire Anti-Terrorist Training Facility

“Train like you fight, fight like you train”

BobMbx on May 12, 2011 at 12:59 PM

Want to bet they don’t get gate-raped, kids groped, and have diapers searched?

Christien on May 12, 2011 at 1:06 PM

Was this part of the original NASA outreach plan?

Fallon on May 12, 2011 at 1:09 PM

Uhhhmm, No.

Use Skype.

bridgetown on May 12, 2011 at 1:17 PM

unstinkingbelievable….

cmsinaz on May 12, 2011 at 1:18 PM

please tell me this is just a lead balloon

cmsinaz on May 12, 2011 at 1:19 PM

How about cage matches on pay per view? The winner gets to not have sex with their nasty, unwashed jihadi spouse.

SKYFOX on May 12, 2011 at 12:35 PM

Nope. Random selection. They draw straws. Short straw wins loses.

a capella on May 12, 2011 at 1:19 PM

It’s against our values as a country and a People to keep people jailed indefinitely. Gitmo needs to be shut down for good.
This should bother everyone of you on here – I’m amazed by how many people don’t see the danger in this – ESPECIALLY in light of “The Patriot Act”.

Either kill these people in a firefight, or capture them and then after interrogating them, let them go.

Gitmo is an aberration

KMC1 on May 12, 2011 at 1:38 PM

Yeah, those wives are looking forward to a proper koran-prescribed beating that they have missed for so long.

slickwillie2001 on May 12, 2011 at 1:41 PM

..can conjugal visits, cable TV, and weight equipment on the yard be far behind. As to the conjugal visits, I Wonder how they would accommodate the goats in those trailers?

The War Planner on May 12, 2011 at 1:45 PM

How about we let in the families of their victims (heavily armed of course) for some quality time with them?

MJBrutus on May 12, 2011 at 2:04 PM

Playing devil’s advocate here, and only for that purpose, the fact that none of those persons at Gitmo have been convicted of any crime or transgression whatsoever might play into this. The very reason they’re referred to as detainees and not convicts is because they’re just that… detained and detained only. Technically, they’re not even arrested. Nor are they technically prisoners of war.

Along with many other former President G.W. Bush policies and decisions, Barack Hussein Obama has gone from a very vocal critic of Gitmo to embracing it, lovingly. Reality triumphs over his liberal idealism. Many of his supporters are pretty darn peeved about that too. I think Barack Hussein Obama frets endlessly over not only getting his agenda imposed on all of America in the time he has left but also over his imminent legacy as well.

Just making the overture that he knows Congressional Republicans will defeat might be enough to say, “Hey. Let’s be clear. I tried to be nice but the Rethuglicans wouldn’t allow me to be.” It works in Barack Hussein Obama’s favor no matter what direction it goes, and perhaps it’s enough to pacify his base in the short term.

FlatFoot on May 12, 2011 at 2:09 PM

The Pentagon is considering allowing the families of detainees at Guantanamo Bay to visit them, an unprecedented step to ease the isolation of inmates who in some cases have been held at the U.S. facility for close to a decade, according to congressional aides.

So, is it a common occurring to have family visits in POW camps? I never heard of that ever happening anywhere in the world.

mizflame98 on May 12, 2011 at 2:13 PM

So, which do you think would have the more thorough security check:
A baby at the Kansas City Airport
or
KSM wife or daughter if she’s wearing a burkha?

mizflame98 on May 12, 2011 at 2:17 PM

Will they be able to have their favorite camel sent over for a conjugal visit?

txdoc on May 12, 2011 at 3:00 PM

Either kill these people in a firefight, or capture them and then after interrogating them, let them go kill these people in a firefight

KMC1 on May 12, 2011 at 1:38 PM

FIFY

Bruno Strozek on May 12, 2011 at 3:39 PM

Perfect opportunity to tag them with RFMD chips for remote tracking.

Terp Mole on May 12, 2011 at 3:50 PM

Bruno Strozek on May 12, 2011 at 3:39 PM

So, AFTER you’ve interrogated a person, kill them. Great.

You must be happy to see Obozocare coming, because obviously you COMPLETELY trust the government.

KMC1 on May 12, 2011 at 5:35 PM