View Full Version : Obama Guantanamo Uyghurliri heqqide nime qarar qilmaqchi? -Obama's Hard Gitmo Choices

Chigaco Tribune
10-11-08, 18:09
Obama's hard Gitmo choices

by Frank James

Reports about the complexities that President-elect Obama will have to unknot in order to redeem his promise to close Guantanamo probably help explain why the Bush Administration's initial approach to the prisoners was to essentially lock them up and throw away the key.

Of course, the Constitution doesn't say the nation's chief executive is allowed to sidestep the laws of the land to avoid solving difficult problems which is why we're arguably where we're at now.

The Obama plan which hasn't been finalized amounts to releasing some prisoners outright and bringing the rest to the U.S. where they would either be tried in regular courts or special ones created to deal with those cases involving classified material.

The plan is likely to be controversial with criticism already coming from the left and right. According to the Associated Press:

The plan being developed by Obama's team has been championed by legal scholars from both political parties. But it is almost certain to face opposition from Republicans who oppose bringing terrorism suspects to the U.S. and from Democrats who oppose creating a new court system with fewer rights for detainees.

The plan drew criticism from some detainee lawyers shortly after it surfaced Monday.

"I think that creating a new alternative court system in response to the abject failure of Guantanamo would be a profound mistake," said Jonathan Hafetz, an American Civil Liberties Union attorney who represents detainees. "We do not need a new court system. The last eight years are a testament to the problems of trying to create new systems."

Among the toughest problems Obama will face will be deciding what to do with the seventeen Chinese Muslims known as Uighurs who have been held at Guantanamo since 2001.

The men were cleared for release after a U.S. court determined that they're no threat to the nation's security.

The men can't be returned to China for fear they would be tortured as political dissidents. Meanwhile, more than 100 countries have refused U.S. requests to resettle them, with some of those refusals responses to Chinese pressure.

Releasing the men into the U.S. to live with Uighur families is a concern as well. Because the men have been held in very severe conditions at Gitmo, there are legitimate worries about their mental status.

In getting a stay last month to block their release from Gitmo, the Bush Administration claimed the men represented a "risk distinct to this nation" in part because of their six years the U.S. confined them at Gitmo.

If Obama decides to release these men into the U.S., there's the obvious risk that one or more of them could wind up in the kind of trouble that could create political problems for him.

But it's untenable, obviously, for him to keep them locked up, especially when a court has determined the men are no threat.

Posted by Frank James on November 10, 2008 5:15 PM
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