The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Washington (AFP) – Thirty-one retired U.S. military officers urged President Barack Obama on Tuesday to make good on his promise to close the Guantanamo prison by speeding up efforts to transfer detainees.

“We appreciate your leadership this past year in recommitting to closing Guantanamo,” the former generals and admirals wrote in a letter released by Human Rights First.

“Guantanamo does not serve America’s interests. As long as it remains open, Guantanamo will undermine America’s security and status as a nation where human rights and the rule of law matter.”

The signatories included a former commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, general Charles Krulak, the former chief of staff of the Air Force, general Merrill McPeak, and the former head of the military’s Central Command which oversees forces in the Middle East, retired general Joseph Hoar.

Five years ago the same generals and admirals were on hand at the Oval Office to witness Obama sign orders to shut Guantanamo and prohibit torture in interrogations.

But the prison is still operating at the U.S. naval base in southeast Cuba, partly because of strong opposition by some members of Congress.

Of the 779 detainees sent to the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, 155 inmates remain behind bars. Among the remaining detainees, 78 are Yemenis and 55 have been cleared for release.

Congress in December lifted some of the more cumbersome rules for transferring inmates out of Guantanamo, giving Obama more latitude.

The former officers appealed to Obama to transfer as soon as possible those inmates no longer deemed a threat and to rapidly review the status of the remaining detainees.

In the letter, the retired senior officers also voiced concern about a persistent “false” debate about the past use of torture by the Central Intelligence Agency.

The officers called on the administration to fully cooperate with the Senate Intelligence Committee to publicly release the panels’ lengthy study of the CIA’s detention, rendition and interrogation program after the September 11, 2001 attacks.

“Former CIA officials who authorized torture continue to defend it in books and film, and public opinion is with them, based on mythology, not fact,” the letter said.

“We believe that upon reviewing the facts the American people will agree that torture was not worth it, and that we as a nation should never return to the dark side.”

AFP Photo/Chantal Valery

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for The Big Story newsletter to receive stories like this one in your inbox.

North Carolina state representative Mike Clampitt swore an oath to uphold the Constitution after his election in 2016 and again in 2020. But there's another pledge that Clampitt said he's upholding: to the Oath Keepers, a right-wing militant organization.

Keep reading... Show less

Reprinted with permission from DailyKos

When Donald Trump rolled out his brand new social media platform for deplorables, TRUTH Media, the clock started ticking on how soon it would crash and burn like Parler, Gab and other deplorable alternatives to Twitter.

Keep reading... Show less
x
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}