The Clever Obama Gitmo Plot

Most of the prisoners in Gitmo were taken from battleground countries. It's similar to soldier prisoners taken back to US concentration camps from overseas. However, the Gitmo prisoners were never enlisted nor conscripted uniformed soldiers of a formal national military of a country. Taking them from the country they were caught in to Gitmo was more like the CIA taking people from countries to other countries.

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The puzzling question is - what law or authority gives our military or CIA to 'rendition' civilians from one country to another? The big problem is that the countries where the prisoners were extracted are often not citizens of the country they were taken from. In the situation of the Yemeni fighters, Al Queda or not, neither Afghanistan nor Yemen wants them back.

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There lies a big problem. The US can't just drop them off in Yemen, and they can't strap them to drones to deliver them to their leaders in Yemen.

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The clever Obama plot is to confront Congress with making decisions about taking prisoners from countries in the future when the US never declared war on that country. The Bush administration thought they were clever in becoming the world's policeman unilaterally; but the politicians in favor of unlimited US world power are now confronted with the problem of holding prisoners til they die in a foreign hostile country without accusing them of anything nor prosecuting them.

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Congressmen have to come up with some way of blaming Obama for a Bush policy, while denying that it was a fault.

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Comments

  1. williamemills41

    Whether there is a real or percieved difference, a prison camp and a concentration camp are two different things. Prisoners, including POW’s are placed into prison camps, while noncombatants, such as the Japanese that lived in America, some for several generations, were placed into concentration camps. And pretty much every country that doesn’t just execute enemy combatants on the battlefield will have to have prison camps, at least until the end of the conflict, as they are temporary, as designated by the label “camp”.

    Second, a combatant need not be a uniformed service member of any country, they just have to take up arms on one side or the other during a conflict. Their country of origin becomes moot at that point. The only pertinent legality is if they will be charged with war crimes as mercenaries after the gun smoke clears.

    And third, I find it pretty amazing the credit that you give to Bush and his administration, by them becoming the worlds police force years before he was even born…sometime around the time that the UN started up, by my recollection of history. Or even further if you want to count the fighting in the Central America region known as the Banana wars, the Cuba and Spain issue, and the China issue, all during the first 30 years of the 20th century.

    But, seriously, why can’t we drop them off in Yemen…they are from there, right?

    May 25, 2013
    1. livelonger

      Your points work best with wars formally declared by Congress against a national uniformed army. Before Korea, there was no mention of being the world’s police force; it was a matter of UN cooperation. Other UN nations would refuse to consider the US as the police force over them.
      .
      If US military did intervene in the Benghazi consulate matter, prisoners of that conflict taken from the battlefield would be more difficult to place in US prison camps, as the US was supposed not to be there militarily.
      .
      The difficulty remains that Iraq, Afghanistan, nor Yemen want the Gitmo prisoners collected from the start of those wars (which were declared and started before 2008.)

      May 25, 2013
      1. williamemills41

        While the UN members won’t acknowledge or allow us to be the police force over them, they are more than happy to allow us, even require us to be the police force FOR them. Look at the balance of assets and personnel and financing for every UN action since it’s inception. If US military did intervene in the Benghazi consulate matter, it would have been an immediate suppression and extraction mission, there would have been no prisoners to be incarcerated. Just like we didn’t bring Bin Laden in for trial. As far as collecting and “rendition” of prisoners, as we turn over assets in country to the authorities, those prisoners are released and often reported as being spotted on the battlefield in the immediate timeframe from their release. As a former Marine, I would think that most UN combatants would rather they be incarcerated in Gitmo, playing soccer and watching sattelite TV than back on the battlefield shooting at them and building IED’s. What happens to them after we figure out that we shouldn’t be there is of little concern to me. Put them all in an airplane with a half tank of fuel and let Al Quida know where they will be splashing down. If they want them, they can come get them.

        May 26, 2013
        1. mrmacq

          “they are more than happy to allow us, even require us to be the police force FOR them.”
          .
          About 4.5% of the troops and civilian police deployed in UN peacekeeping missions come from the European Union and less than one percent from the United States (USA)
          .
          “Look at the balance of assets and personnel and financing for every UN action since it’s inception”
          .
          every UN action ????
          seriously?
          america hasnt been involved with EVERY one
          at least not that particular way
          take "the congo crisis for example
          .
          …The Congo Crisis (1960–1966) was a period of turmoil in the Congo that began with national independence from Belgium and ended with the seizing of power by Joseph Mobutu. At various points, the conflict had the characteristics of anti-colonial struggle, a secessionist war with the province of Katanga, a United Nations peacekeeping operation, and a Cold War proxy battle between the United States and the Soviet Union.

          The Crisis resulted in the deaths of some 100,000 people.5 It led to the assassination of Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba, as well as a traumatic setback to the United Nations

          Soviet & US interventions .
          Lumumba was determined to quickly subdue the renegade provinces of Kasai and Katanga. Dissatisfied with the UN, on August 17, 1960 Lumumba followed through on his threat to request military assistance from the Soviet Union. The USSR quickly responded with an airlift of ANC troops into Kasai and a supply of military trucks. A bloody campaign ensued causing the deaths of hundreds of Baluba tribesmen and the flight of a quarter of a million refugees.

          Lumumba’s decision to accept Soviet help angered the administration of President Dwight D. Eisenhower in the United States who via the CIA, increasingly supported Mobutu and Kasa-Vubu. Referring to the Communist takeover in Cuba in 1959, the CIA station chief in Leopoldville cabled the director to saying “Congo [is] experiencing [a] classic communist effort [to] takeover government… there may be little time to take action to avoid another Cuba”. Eisenhower authorized the CIA to initiate a plan to assassinate Lumumba using poison to be placed in his food or toothpaste, although this plan was aborted

          .
          All member states are legally obliged to pay their share of peacekeeping costs under a complex formula that THEY THEMSELVES have established.

          …(Reuters) – The United States owes $1.2 billion to the United Nations, more than a quarter of the payments owed the world body by all member states, a senior U.N. official said on Thursday.

          U.N. Undersecretary-General for Management Angela Kane told reporters that only 13 of the United Nations’ 192 member states had paid in full as of Wednesday. The total arrears amounted to some $4.1 billion, up from $2.2 billion at the end of 2009, Kane said.

          “It has been a difficult year in many ways for many member states because of the economic recession,” she said.

          The administration of President Barack Obama repaid all the money the United States owed the United Nations last year. U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice told reporters on Thursday that Washington pays its U.N. dues “in full and on time.”

          She said there was an issue of “contested arrears” — debts that Washington does not agree it owes the United Nations.

          “They must be counting contested arrears if it gets to a figure which gets close to anything like that,” she said in reference to the $1.2 billion figure cited by Kane.

          As the United Nations’ single biggest contributor, Washington is responsible for roughly one-quarter of the U.N. peacekeeping budget and slightly less than a quarter of the separate U.N. regular budget.

          The United States has had a history of being reluctant to pay its U.N. dues, with critics of the world body charging it has a bloated and sometimes corrupt bureaucracy. U.N. supporters say the dues are cheap at the price.

          Last December, the U.N. General Assembly approved a U.N. budget of $5.16 billion for 2010 and 2011. That did not include peacekeeping, currently running at some $8 billion a year and approved in separate negotiations, or the costs of several major U.N. agencies that have separate budgets.

          (Reporting by Louis Charbonneau; Editing by Peter Cooney)

          May 26, 2013
          1. livelonger

            “U.N. budget of $5.16 billion for 2010 and 2011. That did not include peacekeeping, currently running at some $8 billion a year and approved in separate negotiations, or the costs of several major U.N. agencies that have separate budgets.”
            .
            Seems the UN is very efficient in the use of money to ‘police’ the world at about 1/100th of the US budget.

            May 26, 2013
            1. mrmacq

              they even go so far as to pay the individuals wages ,clothing and rations
              the donating country pays nothing in upkeep while that member serves in the UN
              .
              most countries (not all – wink- ) have no problem with the UN military hiarchy running the show
              .
              (my spell check is on the fritz…can you tell?)

              May 26, 2013
        2. Neighsayer

          most of the world and the U.N. is actually not that happy. The U.S. is a rogue police force, going to work against the U.N.’s decisions.

          May 26, 2013
      2. livelonger

        “As far as collecting and “rendition” of prisoners, as we turn over assets in country to the authorities, those prisoners are released and often reported as being spotted on the battlefield in the immediate timeframe from their release.”
        .
        The timeframe of ‘immediate’ doesn’t apply in Gitmo. There’s not been turning over, as ‘the authorities’ don’t want Al Queda from other countries turned over immediately nor later. When half of their own nation is willing to fight ‘those authorities’ for action against the fighters in question who were defending their faith and land from non-Muslim invaders. Accepting and/or jailing Yeminis who were fighting for the Al Queda version of Islam is a political nightmare for them, when their own law finds nothing wrong with Yemenis fighting in Afghanistan.
        .
        You might remember that Congress spent a lot of political time refusing to put ‘boots on the ground’ in Libya for international political reasons. There were months of press talk of prosecuting Obama for involving Air Force without Congressional permission. That’s one reason the Benghazi involvement of CIA in the annex was downplayed for months, and reason for consideration now to return the CIA from a ‘secret army’ to an intelligence-gathering agency once more.
        .
        As a proud US Marine, you might have a middle-American view of ‘savior’ of those countries that many in the countries don’t agree with. The Yeminis, like Marines, were in Afghanistan to make a living as fighters while defending their faith and Muslim land. Police arrest and try people for doing something illegal – the Muslims defending Muslim Shariah law countries see themselves as saviors of their faith and lands, with the US/UN ‘police’ in the wrong in their land for revenge. It isn’t a friend-making mission from Muslim view.

        May 26, 2013
        1. mrmacq

          “It isn’t a friend-making mission from Muslim view.”
          .
          exactly
          sometimes ya just gotta learn to get the hell outta dodge

          May 26, 2013
  2. proto-gnostic

    Creating a new label to avoid following the Genève convention is Bush’ albatross. Let’s just dump them at the foot step of his presidential library. We can tell him its interest on his legacy!

    May 26, 2013
    1. mrmacq

      quick note
      …Chase J. Nielsen, one of the U.S. airmen who flew in the Doolittle raid following the attack on Pearl Harbor, was subjected to waterboarding by his Japanese captors. At their trial for war crimes following the war, he testified “Well, I was put on my back on the floor with my arms and legs stretched out, one guard holding each limb. The towel was wrapped around my face and put across my face and water poured on. They poured water on this towel until I was almost unconscious from strangulation, then they would let up until I’d get my breath, then they’d start over again… I felt more or less like I was drowning, just gasping between life and death.”
      The United States hanged Japanese soldiers for waterboarding American prisoners of war
      .
      Waterboarding was designated as illegal by U.S. generals in the Vietnam War. On 21 January 1968, The Washington Post published a controversial front-page photograph of two U.S soldiers and one South Vietnamese soldier participating in the waterboarding of a North Vietnamese POW near Da Nang. The article described the practice as “fairly common”. The photograph led to the soldier being court-martialled by a U.S. military court within one month of its publication, and he was discharged from the army
      .
      In 1947, the United States prosecuted a Japanese civilian who had served in World War II as an interpreter for the Japanese military, Yukio Asano, for “Violation of the Laws and Customs of War,” asserting that he “did unlawfully take and convert to his own use Red Cross packages and supplies intended for” prisoners,
      but, far worse,
      that he also “did willfully and unlawfully mistreat and torture” prisoners of war. Asano received a sentence of 15 years of hard labor. The charges against Asano included “beating using hands, fists, club; kicking; water torture; burning using cigarettes; strapping on a stretcher head downward.”

      The specifications in the charges with regard to “water torture” consisted of “pouring water up [the] nostrils” of one prisoner, “forcing water into [the] mouths and noses” of two other prisoners, and “forcing water into [the] nose” of a fourth prisoner

      .
      International law
      All nations that are signatory to the United Nations Convention Against Torture have agreed they are subject to the explicit prohibition on torture under any condition. This was affirmed by Saadi v. Italy in which the European Court of Human Rights, on 28 February 2008, upheld the absolute nature of the torture ban by ruling that international law permits no exceptions to it. The treaty states “No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture”. Additionally, signatories of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights are bound to Article 5, which states, “No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment”. Many signatories of the convention have made specific declarations and reservations regarding the interpretation of the term “torture” and restricted the jurisdiction of its enforcement. However, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Louise Arbour, stated on the subject “I would have no problems with describing this practice as falling under the prohibition of torture”, and that violators of the UN Convention Against Torture should be prosecuted under the principle of universal jurisdiction.

      May 26, 2013
      1. proto-gnostic

        You don’t need to tell me about how we executed the Japanese for waterboarding our troops. It is torture and those in this country who performed it or approved of it should be held accountable! They have literally brought shame to this nation. And have put every American soldier at risk!

        May 26, 2013
        1. mrmacq

          mine
          was more to tell others
          yours was a convienient post to attach it to
          and yes
          terrible shame
          how can one justify you doing it to them yet its a completely different story when they do it to you?
          whats good for the goose?
          “at risk”…shit yes
          anything goes …pandoras box is wide open

          May 26, 2013
          1. proto-gnostic

            The practices of rendition, and torture have put our troops stationed overseas at greater risks than ever before. It was unneeded, unwarranted, and unjustifiable. And I think the best way to punish those who were in leadership is a thousand white crosses in their front yard, a tribute to their legacy!

            May 26, 2013
            1. mrmacq

              " It was unneeded, unwarranted, and unjustifiable."
              .
              no arguement from moi

              what gets me is those that claim they had every right to do this
              are also loudly proclaiming americans should have all the rights and protections under your law
              no need to have them extendable to anyone else
              that somehow
              by simple virtue of being an american
              they get to claim superiority
              up here in the great white north we also have those same rights
              (argueably since your patriot act…more rights)
              yet there in gitmo sits one canadian…NOT enjoying his rights as a canadian
              .
              can we have him back please?

              May 26, 2013
            2. proto-gnostic

              The patriot act is a bad joke! When it was first propose it gave unprecedented powers to Government at the expense of freedom. When our former president got up and said that, “we will do anything to protect our freedoms”. I pictured an effigy of freedom sitting in a cage wrapped in chains, gaged, and blindfolded with Bush holding the key! Talk about a nightmare!

              May 26, 2013
            3. livelonger

              One was sent back; but his older brother is stuck there.
              .
              “Khadr was repatriated to Canada on September 29, 2012, where he will serve the remainder of his sentence.194 He was incarcerated at maximum-security prison Millhaven Institution near Bath, Kingston, Ontario upon his arrival.24 He has six years remaining on his eight-year sentence but, under Canadian law, will be eligible for parole in mid-2013.23

              Khadr was classified as a prisoner who should be held in maximum security, due to his murder conviction.195 This has delayed his application for parole, as prisoners in maximum security are never given parole."
              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omar_Khadr

              May 26, 2013
            4. livelonger

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_detainees_at_Guantanamo_Bay

              May 26, 2013
            5. mrmacq

              omar is the one i was thinking of
              i didnt know we had got him back

              odd eh?
              The United States Department of Defense acknowledges holding two Canadian captives in Guantanamo, two teenage brothers, Abdurahman Khadr and Omar Khadr
              Abdurahman has described himself as the “black sheep” of his family, who was disgusted by the celebrations he witnessed of the attacks on September 11, 2001.
              (not nessasarily by his family?)
              …He reported that he cooperated fully with the Americans, eventually agreeing to serve as a mole for the CIA, first in Guantanamo Bay detention camps,
              AND LATER….
              in Bosnia, where he was tasked to win the trust of Arab veterans of the Bosnian War of Independence.

              May 26, 2013
          2. Neighsayer

            Welcome back Khadr!

            May 26, 2013
      2. livelonger

        It seems after 1980, American law changed to be whatever lawyers can argue in court and get away with. Such universal declarations against torture is an opportunity for years of litigation to support top lawyers during times of national inconvenience.

        May 26, 2013
        1. mrmacq

          what does one call ten thousand lawyers at the bottom of the ocean?

          a good start

          May 26, 2013