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Gitmo: What is the Problem?

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There has been a lot of talk about the “crisis” in Guantanamo Bay, and frankly, I want to throw up over it. The liberals want us to cave to the terrorists, who were instructed to claim torture if captured.

As Dirty Harry has posted, it is not just liberals. Bill Kristol, Editor of The Weekly Standard, on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace agreed that Guantanamo Bay should be shut down. Others who have weighed: Michelle Malkin Little Green Footballs

Why would conservatives, especially someone like Bill Kristol, cave to the liberals on this issue? Especially, as John Hinderaker of Powerline has pointed out in a June 6th article there has not been anything that stands out in terms of abuse. Here are some examples Hinderaker uses, taken from a report by General Hood.

On 18 AUG 03, two detainees complained that the guards had violated the Koran search policy when they touched the surgical masks used to hang detainee Korans from cell walls during a security, safety, and welfare inspection. The incident was recorded in the electronic blotter system. The guards stated in the blotter log that they were not violating Koran search policy because they did not actually touch the Koran when they squeezed and felt for bulges in the surgical masks. The SOP in place at the time of the incident did not address searching the Koran through the masks.

On 18 AUG 03, at 1220 hours, a guard conducted a routine search of a detainee’s cell. During the search, the guard accidentally knocked the detainee’s Koran out of its holder (a surgical mask) and onto his bunk. The block NCO responded to the cell and explained to the detainee that the incident was an accident. The ICRC asked MG Miller, Commander JTF-GTMO, about the incident during a meeting on 09 OCT 03. MG Miller told the ICRC that he had investigated the incident and determined it to be an accident. A guard recorded the incident in sworn statement.

Is this the “gulag of our time,” as Amnesty International would like people to believe? Is this another Hanoi Hilton?

How can Senator Mel Martinez call for the shutdown of this prison when the detainees are descrating the Koran, not our soldiers.

Closing down Gitmo will just be an admission of guilt to something that the Hood report shows never happened. Thankfully, according to Vice President Cheney, we will not shut down Guantanamo.


The Jawa Report has a related post on the subject. “Dr. Rusty Shackleford” points out a piece by R.J. Rummel on gulags:

Overall, from 1917 to 1987, Gulag, including transit deaths, probably killed about 39,464,000 Soviet citizens and foreigners. Compare this 6,228.5 mile stack of corpses (assuming each corpse has a width of 10 inches), each a loving, self-conscious human being like you and I, to these totals:

Gulag = 39,464,000 murdered (democide/genocide);
All American executions 1864-1982 = 5,753 killed;
All the Americans killed in all its wars up to the Gulf War = 1,177,936 killed;
The killed in battle in World War I = 9,000,000;
Of World War II = 15,000,000;
All 20th Century international and domestic wars = 35,654,000 killed;
And all major wars 1740-1997 = 20,000,000 killed.

Rummel points out, “Now tell me again, Irene Khan and William Schulz of AI, that Guantánamo is like Gulag.”

As Glenn Reynolds would say: Indeed.

For more analysis, please go to Conservative Eyes

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About Art Green

  • The thrust of the original liberal argument seemed to that the abuses at Gitmo were “bad enough” to warrant closure. This is of course wrong on two levels. 1) The abuses that prompted the cries we know to have been wildly inflated, if not wholly invented. 2) Even if there was widespread, gross abuse, the notion that the symbolic gesture of closing the facility would solve anything is inane. All it would do is incur massive administrative costs, interrupt interrogation initiatives, and produce a considerable security risk during prisoner transport and re-confinement. If there are abuses that need addressing, surely a sensible response would include a review of personnel, policies, training, supervision, etc., rather than an arbitrary change of venue for sake of a “clean slate”.

  • RJ

    Superb points, Flip.