Archive for January 8th, 2013

News Digest 1/8/13

Tuesday, January 8, 2013 at 5:00 pm by

Defense bill halts hope of closing Guantanamo Bay

Tuesday, January 8, 2013 at 9:25 am by

The promise that the military detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba would be closed is continuing to remain just a promise.

President Obama signed a defense bill on January 2nd that stresses stronger restrictions on the movement and transfer of detainees out of the center. The administration claimed he would veto the National Defense Authorization Act, but signed the bill into law anyway. The new defense legislation bans the transfer of Guantanamo detainees to the United States for any reason. This new ban includes barring detainees from entering the United States even to merely attend trials in federal court.

The defense secretary also has a new set of guidelines and conditions that must be met before detainees can be returned to his or her country or a third party country.

The transfer process can only begin again with the Pentagon’s certification that is now required by Congress. However, this is unlikely to happen because of the political backlash that would be received. These new provisions continue to halt the justice system and detain individuals for unwarranted amounts of time. Eleven years is long enough to see that Guantanamo’s existence is destroying the way in which justice is enacted in the United States and tarnishing the importance of human rights.