To be more precise: He now opposes closing it anytime soon but naturally is A-OK with closing it at some murky, distant time in the future. Which, as far as I can tell, means he holds the same position on it as George W. Bush or Dick Cheney. Moe Lane thinks this is poll-driven but I’m more inclined to believe that someone with a national security background like Webb’s knew all along that it was a bad idea to close it and was simply giving The One political cover until there was a fig leaf available to let him flip-flop. The new military commissions are that fig leaf, allowing him to pretend that all the alleged defects in Bush’s approach have been cured and therefore Gitmo’s no longer a problem, so a flip-floppin’ we go. The more intriguing question is whether he’s undercutting Obama by doing this or actually secretly helping him out. Superficially it’s a headache for the White House to have a prominent Democratic senator disagreeing with them on Sunday morning TV, but given the respect Webb commands, this gives The One plenty of new political cover to do some flip-flopping himself. Time to put the nutroots on suicide watch?
Sorry to give you this in two clips but you need to watch both (especially the second) to get the full flavor of just how sharp a reversal this is. The first vid focuses on Webb’s opposition to another Obama policy — namely, releasing the 17 Uighurs detained at Gitmo into the United States because they’re no longer a threat except, of course, that they very much are. But then, we already knew that. Click the image to watch.