On his second full day as leader, America’s newly crowned President Obama stood by his word and ordered the U.S. prison facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba be closed, according to the New York Times.
Obama also ordered an all-inclusive review of the U.S.’s‚ treatment‚ of terror suspects and signed an order banning the CIA from using any sort of “enhanced interrogation” methods including waterboarding, effectively distancing himself from Bush’s policies.
“As I said during the inauguration, we are not going to continue with a false choice between our safety and our ideals,” said Obama, IHT reports. “We are going to win this fight but we will win it on our terms.”
The president also ordered a cabinet-level review of some of the most pressing questions facing U.S. international forces: what the U.S. should do with prisoners who cannot be tried in America, how they can make sure prisoners transported to other countries won’t be tortured, and whether or not to keep some interrogation methods secret so terrorism groups don’t train to resist them.
Currently, there are 245 detainees at Guantanamo Bay. The government has said it only plans to bring charges to 80 of the 245, though only a few trials have begun.
The remaining 175 will probably face no charges. Of these 175, nearly 100 were deemed too dangerous to be released by the Bush administration, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
The remaining 75 of the 175 were kept at Gitmo on the grounds that U.S. defense agencies believed they would be tortured or killed had they been sent home.
This was an anticipated move by Obama, although I am a little sad that he delayed deciding on some of the more‚ difficult‚ details for six months. But it is a pretty big thing, so six months isn’t too long.
The time will ensure everything runs smoothly, which is for the best. I guess I’m just a little anxious to see this place shut once and for all.