Monday, July 13, 2009

This isn't track and field

According to the New York Times, "Obama Faces Hurdles in Closing Guantanamo."

As of this week, lawyers reviewing each detainee's case have completed the initial sorting process for only about half the total Guantanamo population of 229 men, though officials said that by October they expected to complete the initial evaluations, determining who could be transferred to other countries, prosecuted or detained without charges.

Last time I looked, Barack Obama was Chief Executive Officer of United States of America, Inc. He can and should tell these jokers "you have until the end of July to decide which detainees are to be charged with crimes in the US court system; if you can't get it done, turn in your resignations and I'll find people who can get it done."

As for those who aren't to be charged and tried (in real courts, not by kangaroo "military commissions"), there's no question of "transferring them to other countries" except by way of repatriating them to their countries of origin if they want to go there. Extradition to other countries on other charges is a legal process. It's not applicable to illegally held abductees. For those don't want to go "home," a green card -- on top of a substantial financial settlement, of course* -- sounds about right by way of compensation for several years of illegal detention.

If Obama doesn't get this done, it will be because he decides not to get it done. There's nothing "difficult" about it.

update, 07/14/09: Memeorandum is listing the Times story now (they weren't when I posted).

* A million bucks each, tax-free, each sounds like a nice, reasonable round number. I suspect most of the abductees would choose retirement in the Caribbean as opposed to being dropped off outside Kandahar with that kind of bankroll.

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