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Obama's First 100 days - a start on Gitmo BUT not enough





deanhills
Lots of criticism by those who had major expectations in January when Obama announced the closing of Gitmo. Obama has not moved much after this announcement. Gitmo seems to be even a better bet than any of the alternative "prisons" in the US who do not seem to be sorted out to deal with "detainees" on the scale of those from Gitmo. Also lots of delays in the courts. Refer article below by a British Journalist, Andy Worthington:
http://www.andyworthington.co.uk/2009/05/04/obamas-first-100-days-a-start-on-guantanamo-but-not-enough/

I liked the following comment on this article:
Quote:
Frances Madeson says...

Again, it’s all so abstract for the decision makers. If only the First Lady would interrupt her delightful days of gardening and puppy training to visit, even briefly, the Detention Center, we could make some real progress here. Besides being a lovely-to-look-at fashion icon, mom and wife, she also happens to be an off-the-charts brilliant lawyer in her own right. One wishes she would be more like Eleanor Roosevelt and less like Betty Crocker, and dig into the social justice concerns in desperate need of her attention. Those seeds need to be watered too.

I mean, she’s already got the job, and we know she’s likable and beautiful (but honestly, she’s teetering on the edge of vapid). What else has she got? I for one would like to see her strut that other stuff, and soon!

...on May 4th, 2009 at 12:17 pm

Voodoocat
Apparently Gitmo is not going anywhere soon. Even though Obama signed the executive order to close Gitmo on his second day in office, the Democrats in Congress just cut the funding to close the facility out of the budget. According the the Washington Post:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/05/04/AR2009050402375.html


By ANDREW TAYLOR
The Associated Press
Monday, May 4, 2009; 6:27 PM

WASHINGTON -- Amid fears that terror suspects could be brought to the U.S., House Democrats on Monday rebuffed the Obama administration's request for $50 million to relocate prisoners from the detention facility at Guantanamo, Cuba.

House Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey, D-Wis., dropped the request from a $94.2 billion measure funding military and diplomatic efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan through the fall...


If you recall, President Bush was lambasted and pilloried for keeping prisoners at Gitmo. I wonder if those same very vocal critics will now treat the Democratic Party the same way for doing the same thing.
Solon_Poledourus
Gotta love them Dems in Congress. They spent the last 8 years pissing and moaning about GITMO and how and why it should be shut down. Then they turn right around and cut funding for that very thing.
Apparently they also were trying to gain Republican support by doing this. They need to stop playing games and actually do something. McCain says the prisoners could be moved to Ft. Levenworth Military Prison in Kansas, so I don't know why they don't explore that idea more.
deanhills
Voodoocat wrote:
If you recall, President Bush was lambasted and pilloried for keeping prisoners at Gitmo. I wonder if those same very vocal critics will now treat the Democratic Party the same way for doing the same thing.
Good point. Given that the comments I quoted came from a balanced international source and were based on factual information. That was the first real criticism I came across, i.e. people getting very worried that their expectations of Obama's undertakings were not being met. I have a feeling that quite a number of people will be writing to Obama, reminding him of his criticism about some of the detainees having been detained for more than 7 years without a hearing. At least during the last part of Bush, detainees were being processed, but right now all the processing has been frozen, the court cases are being delayed (probably are turning out to be expensive too), nothing is happening.
Solon_Poledourus
I wonder if they aren't keeping the prisoners in there indefinately. If they let them out, then we have 245 people, most of whom have a very good case for a class action lawsuit against the US government for kidnapping, torture, unlawful imprisonment, revoking of human rights, etc.
With all our other economic troubles, that could be a multi-billion dollar lawsuit. Both Obama and his wife are lawyers, and they probably know this.
deanhills
Solon_Poledourus wrote:
I wonder if they aren't keeping the prisoners in there indefinately. If they let them out, then we have 245 people, most of whom have a very good case for a class action lawsuit against the US government for kidnapping, torture, unlawful imprisonment, revoking of human rights, etc.
With all our other economic troubles, that could be a multi-billion dollar lawsuit. Both Obama and his wife are lawyers, and they probably know this.
You know Solon, you may have just hit it over the head on this one. I never thought about it. The delays is not just a case of working through the files, but actually calculating the class action lawsuits. The law cases that are already on the go is a good example of what can be waiting, so maybe they need to do things in a way so as to minimize the damage, and so far no action has worked for them. I doubt that it will work for a long time. Think this time round the UN and International Courts will probably charge the United States Government with crime against the detainees.
angel2redrose
obama gerat.................
LumberJack
Why do people expect the everything to be fixed in the first 100 days... stupidest thing I have ever heard of. You elected him for 4 years, I can understand starting to be more critical after 1 year, or 2 years...
deanhills
LumberJack wrote:
Why do people expect the everything to be fixed in the first 100 days... stupidest thing I have ever heard of. You elected him for 4 years, I can understand starting to be more critical after 1 year, or 2 years...
We were specifically talking about Gitmo. While Obama was on his presidential campaign he was quite critical about Gitmo, and resolved to have the detainees processed as soon as possible. Some of the detainees had been detained for up to seven years without a hearing. In January just after he became President Obama signed off on the closure of Gitmo. And then he found that it was not as simple as it had seemed before he was President, and it is not as easy to obtain due process. And there is now more delay than what there was before he became President. Currently there is a complete freeze until all the files (of 245 prisoners) can be worked through. Deadline was 20 May, but now the Democrats are asking for a further three months. Bush critics who thought Obama was going to wave a magic wand, are finally getting itchy feet and questioning the delays.
LumberJack
Not everyone in Gitmo is a warm and fuzzy person, they should really be taking some time to do it right. Are people really outraged because they asked for an extra 3 months to sort stuff out? They are still going to be incarcerated. Be realistic here, you have a president fighting a bureaucracy, and worse, it includes the US military and Homeland Security.
deanhills
LumberJack wrote:
Not everyone in Gitmo is a warm and fuzzy person, they should really be taking some time to do it right. Are people really outraged because they asked for an extra 3 months to sort stuff out? They are still going to be incarcerated. Be realistic here, you have a president fighting a bureaucracy, and worse, it includes the US military and Homeland Security.
Thanks for this Lumberjack. And the greatest irony is that people are beginning to discover how good Gitmo has been in compared with less rights available at the prisons in the United States. They are having it better at Gitmo. A further irony is that the processing of the prisoners is supposed to be more important than the closure of Gitmo, yet now the closure of Gitmo is overshadowing everything as well as delaying the processing of the detainees, as they are finding it really difficult to find suitable alternative places for the detainees. What was perceived as a mess before, has become ten times worse. Possibly a better solution would have been instead of signing off on closing Gitmo, to have focussed on processing the detainees first.
taytay
eh, i still don't like the guy. I'm only 19, but every 4 years of my life all I've seen has been old guys promise America so many great things, then they don't do any of them. WHY in the world is america still so stupid?! Obama promise a ton of wonderful things! How many of them are going to actually happen? Why are insurance companies throwing out more enticing ads with such great rates? I thought OBAMA was going to take care of our health insurance? HAHA! at least that's what he proclaimed. if he actually makes it happen, and it actually works, maybe I'll actually consider him as a real candidate to be my president next term around. To be our "First Black President" he better be do something darn amazing that's worth going down in history, rather than just being remember because the "First Black President" made something small happen and preached about how great it was for America.

BLAH!
deanhills
taytay wrote:
eh, i still don't like the guy. I'm only 19, but every 4 years of my life all I've seen has been old guys promise America so many great things, then they don't do any of them. WHY in the world is america still so stupid?! Obama promise a ton of wonderful things! How many of them are going to actually happen? Why are insurance companies throwing out more enticing ads with such great rates? I thought OBAMA was going to take care of our health insurance? HAHA! at least that's what he proclaimed. if he actually makes it happen, and it actually works, maybe I'll actually consider him as a real candidate to be my president next term around. To be our "First Black President" he better be do something darn amazing that's worth going down in history, rather than just being remember because the "First Black President" made something small happen and preached about how great it was for America.

BLAH!
Hope that your generation can stand up for your points of view, which are perfectly valid ones. I like your thinking. Something is not right with the system and it is up to you to correct it. Perhaps your generation should start your own version of the Tea Parties? Smile
Solon_Poledourus
LumberJack wrote:
Not everyone in Gitmo is a warm and fuzzy person, they should really be taking some time to do it right.

But in accordance with our laws, everyone in GITMO deserves the right to a trial(which they haven't gotten yet), the right to face their accusers(this would happen at trial), the right to see the evidence presented against them(which we don't have), the right to deny the charges against them(nobody has been charged with a crime), etc. Not to mention basic human rights.
Maybe everyone there isn't "a warm and fuzzy person", but until we determine what exactly they are, it is our duty as Americans to see that they get fair treatment within our laws and within the laws of human decency.
LumberJack wrote:
Are people really outraged because they asked for an extra 3 months to sort stuff out?

No. People are outraged because they set a date, then delayed it, then set another date, which will likely be delayed again. People are outraged bacuse promises are being broken and human beings who have not been charged with any crimes are paying the price while our government drags it's feet.
LumberJack wrote:
They are still going to be incarcerated. Be realistic here, you have a president fighting a bureaucracy, and worse, it includes the US military and Homeland Security.

Agreed. And Obama knew this from the outset, which is why he should never have set a date and made promises which he had to know he couldn't keep. Setting a date and promising to shut down GITMO led people to believe that he already had a plan and was sorting things out. This is the lie that has enraged people.
handfleisch
taytay wrote:
eh, i still don't like the guy. I'm only 19, but every 4 years of my life all I've seen has been old guys promise America so many great things, then they don't do any of them. WHY in the world is america still so stupid?! Obama promise a ton of wonderful things! How many of them are going to actually happen? Why are insurance companies throwing out more enticing ads with such great rates? I thought OBAMA was going to take care of our health insurance? HAHA! at least that's what he proclaimed. if he actually makes it happen, and it actually works, maybe I'll actually consider him as a real candidate to be my president next term around. To be our "First Black President" he better be do something darn amazing that's worth going down in history, rather than just being remember because the "First Black President" made something small happen and preached about how great it was for America.

BLAH!


One thing you will learn as you mature -- you should appreciate the good things you have, not just focus on the negative.

Are you aware of the things Obama has already done, the promises he's already kept in just four months, the positive measures he has enacted? A few examples---

In terms of freedoms and rights, he granted Americans unrestricted rights to visit family and send money to Cuba. He overturned a Supreme Court decision by passing an act to give workers rights to sue about discrimination with a statute of limitations that starts when they discovered it, not when it started, fixing something that was really screwed up for working people in the US legal system.

In terms of people's economic choices and the financial crisis, he expanded eligibility for State Children's Health Insurance Fund (SCHIP), which will help a lot of families with children (hopefully we will enact universal health care, like all the other industrialized nations have). He created a foreclosure prevention fund for homeowners and funded a major expansion of AmeriCorps, which means both jobs and education. He extended unemployment insurance benefits and temporarily suspended taxes on these benefits, which will really help financially struggling people, will keep homelessness from rising, etc. And he expanded loan programs for small businesses

Concerning corruption in the White House and changing the divisiveness of politics, he banned lobbyist gifts to executive employees and appointed a Republican to his cabinet.

As far as being "green", he has provided grants to encourage energy-efficient building codes and invested the US in alternative energy, home weatherizing, and high-speed rail.

And he directed the military leaders to end war in Iraq and intensified the effort to win in Afghanistan -- both things he inherited, by the way.

He increased funding for the National Endownments for the Arts.

BTW, isn't it strange to complain about "How many of them are going to actually happen?" only a four months into the presidency?
deanhills
handfleisch wrote:
taytay wrote:
eh, i still don't like the guy. I'm only 19, but every 4 years of my life all I've seen has been old guys promise America so many great things, then they don't do any of them. WHY in the world is america still so stupid?! Obama promise a ton of wonderful things! How many of them are going to actually happen? Why are insurance companies throwing out more enticing ads with such great rates? I thought OBAMA was going to take care of our health insurance? HAHA! at least that's what he proclaimed. if he actually makes it happen, and it actually works, maybe I'll actually consider him as a real candidate to be my president next term around. To be our "First Black President" he better be do something darn amazing that's worth going down in history, rather than just being remember because the "First Black President" made something small happen and preached about how great it was for America.

BLAH!


One thing you will learn as you mature -- you should appreciate the good things you have, not just focus on the negative.

Are you aware of the things Obama has already done, the promises he's already kept in just four months, the positive measures he has enacted? A few examples---

In terms of freedoms and rights, he granted Americans unrestricted rights to visit family and send money to Cuba. He overturned a Supreme Court decision by passing an act to give workers rights to sue about discrimination with a statute of limitations that starts when they discovered it, not when it started, fixing something that was really screwed up for working people in the US legal system.

In terms of people's economic choices and the financial crisis, he expanded eligibility for State Children's Health Insurance Fund (SCHIP), which will help a lot of families with children (hopefully we will enact universal health care, like all the other industrialized nations have). He created a foreclosure prevention fund for homeowners and funded a major expansion of AmeriCorps, which means both jobs and education. He extended unemployment insurance benefits and temporarily suspended taxes on these benefits, which will really help financially struggling people, will keep homelessness from rising, etc. And he expanded loan programs for small businesses

Concerning corruption in the White House and changing the divisiveness of politics, he banned lobbyist gifts to executive employees and appointed a Republican to his cabinet.

As far as being "green", he has provided grants to encourage energy-efficient building codes and invested the US in alternative energy, home weatherizing, and high-speed rail.

And he directed the military leaders to end war in Iraq and intensified the effort to win in Afghanistan -- both things he inherited, by the way.

He increased funding for the National Endownments for the Arts.

BTW, isn't it strange to complain about "How many of them are going to actually happen?" only a four months into the presidency?
I thought that taytay's remarks were very much on the mark. Short, to the point, unbiased and objective. He is looking at Obama from the outside in, i.e. as "A" President and not "THE" President.

Quite a number of Obama's accomplishments that is mentioned in the above quote were already underway at the time when Obama took over. Definitely the war in Iraq had been at an end for a long time already and it was in a "wrapping up" process. Obama cannot take credit for that.

Much more is needed in taking charge of environmental issues. Obama's efforts are the equivalent of a small pebble in a whole ocean of effort that is needed to stop the destruction of the environment.

Obama has been overspending, starting with 1.2-trillion loan, which right off the bat makes all the millions afterwards easy to achieve. He is not doing that well on taxes either. Quite a number of the above list of accolades include expenditure, and it will be interesting to see what the balance of accounts will look like at the end of the year.
handfleisch
deanhills wrote:
handfleisch wrote:
taytay wrote:
eh, i still don't like the guy. ...

BLAH!


One thing you will learn as you mature -- you should appreciate the good things you have, not just focus on the negative.
...
I thought that taytay's remarks were very much on the mark. ...

Has it ever occurred to your supercomputer brain to give the persons addressed a chance to answer for themselves before you start with your usual inanity?
deanhills
handfleisch wrote:
deanhills wrote:
handfleisch wrote:
taytay wrote:
eh, i still don't like the guy. ...

BLAH!


One thing you will learn as you mature -- you should appreciate the good things you have, not just focus on the negative.
...
I thought that taytay's remarks were very much on the mark. ...

Has it ever occurred to your supercomputer brain to give the persons addressed a chance to answer for themselves before you start with your usual inanity?

As far as I know this is a forum and not a one on one discussion. I wanted to give credit to Taytay's point of view first before I started my comment which I notice is missing from your quotation. I will add it here:
deanhills wrote:
I thought that taytay's remarks were very much on the mark. ..

Quite a number of Obama's accomplishments that is mentioned in the above quote were already underway at the time when Obama took over. Definitely the war in Iraq had been at an end for a long time already and it was in a "wrapping up" process. Obama cannot take credit for that.

Much more is needed in taking charge of environmental issues. Obama's efforts are the equivalent of a small pebble in a whole ocean of effort that is needed to stop the destruction of the environment.

Obama has been overspending, starting with 1.2-trillion loan, which right off the bat makes all the millions afterwards easy to achieve. He is not doing that well on taxes either. Quite a number of the above list of accolades include expenditure, and it will be interesting to see what the balance of accounts will look like at the end of the year.

I'm interested in your point of view about the content of my posting. Anything personal may be better in a PM?
dr2g0n1
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