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My thoughts on the Gitmo detainees.

01/21/2009

Many of the detainees have never been charged, and some, it seems many, remain detained by weak, difficult to even obtain for review and challenge, evidence.

The fact that some released detainees have resumed, or perhaps begun for the first time, maybe as a consequence of their improper, where applicable, detainment, their terrorist activities, does not convict the remaining Gitmo detainees. Granted, there is a higher probability of guilt among said detainees than exists for the average person, but, nevertheless, greater than average probability without fair trials to present them in, does not prove guilt. Evidence of what they might do is less important than strength of evidence for what they’re accused of doing, as the latter is needed to support the validity of the argument for the former.

Furthermore, weak evidence itself undermines the security necessity argument for indefinite detainment. Assumptions that the remaining detainees will do as whatever percentage of the released detainees who committed acts of terrorism have, is an insufficient reason for indefinite detainment. It is cruel and unusual; excessive.

Some of you want to argue that the Constitution does not apply to the detainees. I’m not a scholar on the subject. I’m not going to make claims as to what it covers, whether it’s citizens only, or any persons within the US, and I’m not making any contentions on whether Gitmo is US soil and therefor covered by the Constitution of the United States, though I think the Courts have established thus far that it is. But I am going to put forth this analogy: If your children were in the same situation as some of the detainees, your natural inclination would not be to say that all of the rights of the Constitution (which many of you would proclaim to be God-given and merely acknowledged in the Constitution) which are meant to protect people from injustices, et al, are the exclusive “privilege” of the Americans, but to adamantly contend they, at least some of them, are the humane principles which should apply to all peoples, especially your son, daughter, what have you, because it would be an injustice for them not to be. Were you a non-American parent, would you say, “screw my son, if the Americans claim he’s dangerous, that’s good enough for me. Afterall, I don’t need to see the evidence supporting his detainment; it’s the Americans who have him”?

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2 comments

  1. Precedent for a claim of the injustness of the present situation wouldn’t invalidate such a claim, as it is not only a contention that is legally based but also morally.

    I’m not making a legal contention. I’m arguing the inherent unfairness of the situation, and asserting that if it was reversed, the near blanket rejection many conservatives et al have would not be so quickly made. Something isn’t appropriate solely because it is traditional, long established, or was rarely, if ever, challenged previously.


  2. Can some learned Liberal out there help me?? I searched and searched and searched, but could find no evidence that we ever charged those hundreds of thousands of Axis prisoners we incarcerated in the US and in Hawaii during World Warll. I recall we had over 25,000 Italian Army prisoners somewhere in NJ and Staten Island but, despite searching every piece of paper ever put out by the ACLU, I could find no mention of “charges” and “trials”. I wonder why? Did the US Government
    shred all the evidence? I even checked most of the Law Schools in the US to see if there had been a “spike” in enrollment. But no such luck.



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