Give Back Gitmo - Leonardi

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Transcript of Give Back Gitmo - Leonardi

  • 7/28/2019 Give Back Gitmo - Leonardi


    Give Back Gitmo

  • 7/28/2019 Give Back Gitmo - Leonardi



    Contention One: Torture

    The House is currentlyblocking Obamas attempt to close Guantanamo Bay thestatus quo is political gridlockZengerle 13(Patricia, writer for Reuters, House Votes to block Obama plan to close Guantanamo, 6.14.13,, [CL])

    The U.S. House of Representatives passed a massive defense bill on Friday that includes measures to

    block President Barack Obama's plans to close the Guantanamo Bay prison, underscoring the tough

    fight ahead for the White House as it seeks to shutter the controversial detention camp. TheRepublican-controlled House voted, 315-108, for the $638 billion National Defense Authorization Act, which authorizes money for weapons, troops andthe war in Afghanistan. But it also addresses a range of policy matters, including this year's efforts to combat sexual assault in the military and

    provisions intended to prevent the closure of the prison camp at the base in Cuba. Despite a hunger strike by at least 104 of the 166prisoners and appeals from Obama that the prison is too expensive to maintain and a recruiting tool

    for anti-American militants, the House voted, 249-174 , to defeat an amendment calling for its

    shutdown by the end of 2014. Lawmakers also voted to prevent the transfer to Yemen or the United States of any of the prisoners,captured in counterterrorism operations after the September 11, 2001, attacks, although more than half have been cleared for release during U.S.military and intelligence reviews. Obama, who had pledged during his 2008 presidential campaign to shut down the Guantanamo prison, had hiscounterterrorism adviser, Lisa Monaco, call legislators this week in a last-ditch effort to build support for closing the base. LESS RESISTANCE IN

    SENATE The House vote does not end Obama's hopes of shutting down the prison. The Senatemust still pass its version of the massive National Defense Authorization Act, and then the two will bereconciled before being submitted to Obama, who has threatened to veto the House version of the bill. There is less resistance toclosing Guantanamo in the Senate, where Obama's fellow Democrats hold a slim majority. A handful of Republicans, includingArizona's influential Senator John McCain, also want it shut. The Senate Armed Services Committ ee's version of the bill - which still faces a vote in thefull Senate - would give the defense department more flexibility to close the Guantanamo prison.
  • 7/28/2019 Give Back Gitmo - Leonardi


    Meanwhile, conditions are getting worse every day in the prison no one inWashington is willing to move on closing Guantanamo every day that the Baseremains open is a day of torture for prisoners on hunger strikeFrommer 13(Frederic, USA Today, 7.16.13, US Judge Turns Down Bid to End Gitmo Force-Feeding,, [CL])

    WASHINGTON (AP) A federal judge Tuesday turned down a bid by three Guantanamo Bay

    detainees on a hunger strike to stop the government from force-feeding them. Judge Rosemary M.

    Collyer ruled that she doesn't have jurisdiction in the case , because Congress has removed

    Guantanamo detainees' treatment and conditions of confinement from the purview of federalcourts. She said there was "nothing so shocking or inhumane in the treatment" that would raise a constitutional concern. Collyer, an appointee ofPresident George W. Bush, wrote that even if she did have jurisdiction, she would deny the detainees' motion for an injunction.While theeffort is framed as a motion to stop force-feeding, the prisoners' "real complaint is that the UnitedStates is not allowing them to commit suicide by starvation," she wrote. She said that the United States cannot allow aperson in custody to die of self-inflicted starvation, and that numerous courts have recognized the government's duty to prevent suicide and to providelife-saving nutritional and medical care to people in custody. The three men, Shaker Aamer, Nabil Hadjarab and Ahmed Belbacha, have all been clearedfor release but remain at Guantanamo. Jon Eisenberg, one of the attorneys for the detainees, said Collyer was wrong when she said the detainees are

    demanding a right to commit suicide. "She has misunderstood the purpose of the hunger strike. It's not to

    commit suicide, it's to protest indefinite detention," he said.

    As to her conclusion that there wasnothing inhumane about force-feeding, Eisenberg said, "Human rights advocates, medical ethicistsand religious leaders say otherwise." He said the lawyers were considering an appeal. Another judge, Gladys Kessler, turned down asimilar case last week, also concluding that she lacked jurisdiction. But she called force-feeding a "painful, humiliating and degrading process." Kessler,

    who was appointed by President Bill Clinton, wrote that there is one person who does have the authority to

    address the issue and then quoted a recent speech from President Barack Obama in which he criticized the force-feeding of the

    prisoners at Guantanamo as he said he would renew his efforts to close the prison. " The president of the United States, as commander in

    chief, has the authorityand powerto directly address the issue of force-feeding of the detaineesat Guantanamo Bay," she wrote. Lawyers for prisoners saythe most recent hunger strike began in Februaryas aprotest of conditions and their indefinite confinement at the U.S. base in Cuba. As of Tuesday, themilitary said, a little under half of the 166 detainees were participating in the hunger strike.
  • 7/28/2019 Give Back Gitmo - Leonardi


    In Guantanamo Bay 44 prisoners are force-fed every day. Standard OperatingProcedure is to strap the detainee to a chair while cuffed, insert a long tube fromthe nose into the stomach, and pump nutrients into the stomach with a syringe.The process takes over two hours. Its so painful that it creates permanent healthproblems and scars the victims for life.Hajjar 13(Lisa, professor of Sociology at UC Santa Barbara, The Agony and the Irony of Guantanamos Mass Hunger Strike, 6.20.13,, [CL])

    More than two-thirds of the prisoners at Guantnamo104 reportedlyare hunger striking, and forty-four are being force fed. Four have been hospitalized for causes relating to their force feeding or hunger striking. The current mass hungerstrike bears many resemblances and shares some common causes to the mass strike in 2006. Some prisoners have been on hunger strike for years.Hunger striking is a classic method used by prisoners to protest the conditions of their detention. In Formations of Violence, Allen Feldmans study ofIrish Republican Army (IRA) prisoners in British custody, he explains the politics of deliberate self-starvation: It is not only a matter ofwhat history

    does to the body but what subjects do with what history has done to the body. The choice to exercise the limited power thatprotesting prisoners havethe power to refuse to eatis, in Feldmans words, a form of counter-instrumentation of their own bodies. As one Yemeni hunger-striking prisoner wrote in a notereleased by his lawyer David Remes:

    A human being should defend himself, but if he were to become totally unable to do so, heshould take the difficult and simple decision because he has no other options. Doing so, he

    achieves victory over injustice and humiliation and feels his dignity as a human being.Over a dozen of Remes eighteen clients are hunger striking, and four are being force fed. He provided the following narrativ e of the events that led tothe mass strike:When President Obama took office in 2009, he sent Admiral Patrick M. Walsh to GTMO [Guantnamo] to determine whether the prison met thestandards of Common Article 3 [of the Geneva Conventions]. Predictably, Walsh reported that, yes, the camp complied with Common Article 3, butthey could do even better! Thereafter, conditions in the camps markedly improved, the only creditable aspect of President Obamas GTMO policy. TheJoint Detention Group (JDG), a component of the Joint Task Force Guantanamo (JTF), ruled with a light touch and maintained the peace an Era of

    Good Feelingsuntil the summer of 2012. In June 2012, JDG command passed to Colonel John V. Bogdan, one-timecommander of an MP [military police] brigade that operated in East Bagdad. Unlike his Obama-era predecessors, Bogdan brought atough-guy approach to detention operations and he has ruled the camps with an iron fist.Marked by displays of power for powers sake, his approach has led to mayhem in the camps. InSeptember, Bogdan, without provocation, had his men storm Camp 6 [where compliant detaineeslived communally]. During the fall, conditions in the camps deteriorated: for example,