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UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo

by TChris

It's time to close Guantanamo. The prisoners detained there should be released or placed on trial. So says a report (pdf) issued by inspectors for the United Nations Human Rights Commission.

It focused in particular on the force-feeding of inmates on conducting hunger strikes, which is said was both a violation of human rights and of medical ethics, and of the use of interrogation techniques that go beyond what international law permits.

"The confusion with regard to authorized and unauthorized interrogation techniques is particularly alarming," it said.

Guantanamo is an embarrassment to the United States, a stain on the country's reputation as a guardian of human rights. It should be closed for that reason, if no other.

The report cited a long list of what it called human rights abuses, including:

  • the inability of suspects to challenge their captivity before a judicial body that meets international standards, which "amounts to arbitrary detention."
  • a hearing system in which the executive branch of the United States government acts as judge, prosecutor and defense counsel for detainees, which constitutes "serious violations of the right to a fair trial."
  • Attempts by the United States administration to redefine torture to allow interrogation techniques "that would not be permitted under the internationally accepted definition of torture."
  • Authorized interrogation techniques, particularly if used together, that "amount to degrading treatment" in violation of an international treaty banning torture.
  • "The general conditions of detention, in particular the uncertainty about the length of detention and prolonged solitary confinement, amount to inhuman treatment."
  • "The excessive violence used in many cases during transportation," and "force-feeding of detainees on hunger strike must be assessed as amounting to torture."
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  • Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#1)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:20:52 AM EST
    I'll start paying attention to the UN when it identifies and turns over all the information on those involved in the Oil For Food scandal and reforms its other corrupt practices. Shorter: Never.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#2)
    by desertswine on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:44:14 AM EST
    This post is about Guantanamo.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#3)
    by theologicus on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:44:33 AM EST
    The complete, or supposedly complete, file of more than 1000 Abu Ghraib photos has now been posted at salon.com. Whatever anyone's original intentions may have been in releasing only a portion to the media in Austrailia, the effect has been toward something pretty close to full disclosure. The question now will be how widely these photos become available to the American public. Will ordinary Americans be confronted with them, in all their shamefulness, or will they remain hidden in plain sight? National Religious Campaign Against Torture

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#4)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 08:10:20 AM EST
    Of course Guantanamo should be closed. None of the prisoners there are legally held, even those (the minority) who actually were "taken in a belligerant act" - it isn't a PoW camp, yet none of the prisoners have had their status determined by a competent tribunal to remove them from PoW status. Further, it's clear that the majority of them ought to have been released as civilians, not held as PoWs. This even before it became clear that Guantanamo Bay is a human rights horrorshow. Nor do we know exactly how many other gulags the US has built secretly elsewhere. There must be a complete investigation into all prison camps run by the US, not only Guantanamo Bay.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#5)
    by Al on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 08:53:20 AM EST
    Guantanamo is one of the most powerful symbols of a fundamental tenet of the military-political establishment: Rights are not absolute. All legislation to protect basic human rights, including the right to live, can be trumped by a decision that violence is needed. The decision is made by the court of the powerful; they answer to noone, and give no explanation. Thus the precedent that all rights can be nullified at the whim of the elite is set. People can be taken and held indefinitely with no reason given, and no opportunity to even ask for one. People may be spied upon by the millions, and the information used by whoever is listening for whatever purpose they see fit. If you haven't read "The Trial" by Franz Kafka, do so. Warning: It will reach into corners of your soul you may not have known you had. But then so should Guantanamo. And Guantanamo is not fiction. Practically everyone - for all we know, really everyone - in Guantanamo is K.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#6)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:28:36 AM EST
    It is not going to close, so what is the UN going to do about it? As much as it pains me, i have to agree with the clicher laureate, PPJ, and say the UN is useless.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#7)
    by Darryl Pearce on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 10:04:56 AM EST
    Well, since the White House has set itself up as the bully of the world, and JimakaPPJ is its toady... on this issue we're on opposite sides of the fence. There's neither metaphor nor simile I can use to describe the fear and disgust I have that my idealistic faith in high principles has been shattered by the reality that we've been killing each other since getting kicked out of the Garden of Eden.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#8)
    by Slado on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 10:36:48 AM EST
    If despots, revolutionary armies, dictators and terrorists don't have to listen to the UN then why should the US? Maybe we should cut off their funding, their NYC apartments, close the doors and move it all to Switzerland since we're such a horrible government. A UN order or request isn't worth the paper its printed on unless the US military provides the ink and paper. Wake me when the UN stands for something.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#9)
    by Al on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 10:39:23 AM EST
    Jlvngston: The fact that the Bush dictatorship ignores the UN doesn't mean the UN is useless. It means the Bush dictatorship ignores the UN. The question is not what is the UN going to do about it. The question is, what are you going to do about it.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#10)
    by Al on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 10:42:18 AM EST
    Slado:
    Maybe we should cut off their funding, their NYC apartments, close the doors and move it all to Switzerland since we're such a horrible government.
    We?

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#11)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 12:19:04 PM EST
    Al, what is the UN going to do about it. Pretty fair question isn't it? Me, I do lots. Want to debate who does more?

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#12)
    by Slado on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 12:37:47 PM EST
    We: The US government and the citizens it represents through democratic elections.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#13)
    by Slado on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 12:38:59 PM EST
    Al If the UN passes a resolution and the US doesn't sign it...does it matter?

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#14)
    by Al on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 01:16:51 PM EST
    Jlvngstn, the UN does not have a mandate to force a government to shut down a prison. If you think they should, tell your government that. Write to your legislators and tell them that the US should comply with the UN demand to shut down Guantanamo. And if you're unsatisfied with the response of the government, vote them down when you get the chance, and try to persuade others to do the same. You are still, at least formally, living in a democracy. Work the system, do whatever you can. I will be quite blunt: Blaming the UN is a cop-out. Slado, the US government is not the same thing as its citizens (except for the citizens on the government payroll). And If the UN passes a resolution and the US doesn't sign it, yes, it matters. The US government cannot be forced to comply; but the alienation of the US from the rest of the world that is represented in the UN is increased. Of course, you may not care about that. But that's your problem, not the rest of the world's. Some Americans -- not all -- have a profound disdain for the rest of the world, including international institutions. They have this idea that the US is omnipotent and doesn't need anybody else. Whoever does not do the will of the almighty United States of America is "useless" or "irrelevant". I would point out that this mentality has set up the United States for one miserable failure after another, but that would probably be a waste of time.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#15)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 01:29:52 PM EST
    Al: What is the UN going to do about it? Tell me Al, why was the UN created? I believe it had something to do with World Security and keeping the world safe by having the founding members acting as the world police. Now correct me if I am wrong, but World Police would most likely encompass not violating basic human rights and stirring up vitriolic actions against one or many nations. It would also be responsible for maintaining a semblance of equity and fairness. Now the UN has written a report chastising the US for Gitmo (rightly so) and the US has dismissed it. Now what? The UN was created to prevent any one country from abusing its power or might in our situation. Again, fair question, what is the UN going to do about it? Nothing. It would appear that empty rhetoric is not exclusively limited to US politicians.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#16)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 01:37:32 PM EST
    PS AL - Blaming the UN is your interpretation of my comment, which of course goes to your agenda. Vote out the evils and vote in the do-gooders. I have no affinity for this administration, nor did I vote for them. What I do have is a lack of respect for the UN and for its ability to enforce international human rights issues. The UN released the report how many years after Gitmo was opened? The UN will do nothing if the US does not comply. Same as they did when we took a trip to Bosnia.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#17)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 01:50:04 PM EST
    Lest one forget: Universal Declaration of Human Rights: This is what the UN "stands for."

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#18)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 01:54:34 PM EST
    Reuters
    The five investigators said they were particularly concerned by attempts by the U.S. administration to "redefine" the nature of torture to allow certain interrogation techniques. Washington, which denies any international laws are being broken, accused the U.N. investigators of acting like prosecution lawyers with the report, selecting only those elements that backed their case. Washington also denies that the force-feeding of inmates on hunger strike, which was undertaken to save their lives, amounted to cruel treatment. The five U.N. investigators, who include Manfred Nowak, special rapporteur on torture, and Leila Zerrougui, chairwoman of the U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, said the findings were based on interviews with past detainees, lawyers and replies to questions put to the U.S. government. The five turned down a U.S. offer to visit the detention centre late last year because Washington would not allow them to interview individual detainees.


    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#19)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 02:02:05 PM EST
    ppj - "Oil for food." Thats getting to be like you yelping Chappaquidick every time you see the name Kennedy in print. Any moral indignation about the missing eight billion from Iraq; or are you just assuming it went to a good cause like Ollies arms sales to terrorists "threatening the entire Middle East"?

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#20)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 02:20:47 PM EST
    Thanks SHM. AL, the question stands, based on the UN's founding principles, what will be done? If not the UN, then WHO?

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#21)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 02:21:45 PM EST
    Jondee, nicely done.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#22)
    by Al on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 03:08:02 PM EST
    Jlvngstn:
    Tell me Al, why was the UN created? I believe it had something to do with World Security and keeping the world safe by having the founding members acting as the world police. Now correct me if I am wrong, but World Police would most likely encompass not violating basic human rights and stirring up vitriolic actions against one or many nations.
    Well, you're just completely wrong. It is not the UN's mandate to be a "world police" at all. You should read the Charter of the United Nations. True, the Security Council could agree to have action taken against a state; are you seriously suggesting that the Security Council should take action against the United States if they refuse to close Guantanamo? Or are you just throwing a little fit? Be serious. If you agree that Guantanamo should be closed (and I'm not sure you do), then go and lobby the people responsible for Guantanamo.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#23)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 03:20:39 PM EST
    Al, are you reading challenged?
    to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small, and to establish conditions under which justice and respect for the obligations arising from treaties and other sources of international law can be maintained, and
    Of course gitmo should be closed. The US has circumvented international law and someone has to hold the US accountable. Pretty simple.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#24)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 03:40:43 PM EST
    Jlvst: What I do have is a lack of respect for the UN and for its ability to enforce international human rights issues. Are you forgetting which superpower holds a Security Council veto? The Security Council literally cannot so much as vote a censure of the US - the US would veto it. Further, in real terms, no action can be taken against the world's only superpower to enforce the treaties and international agreements which the US is breaking: not only because the US holds a veto against any such action proposed by the Security Council, but because there is no way that the other UN members can post any credible threat to the US to enforce a ruling. In short, Jlv, yes, the UN is helpless to prevent the US from engaging in this kind of horror. When the UN was set up, and during the six decades since, the US has worked to make sure that no other country - no other countries - could tell the US what to do and make it stick. The US is a rogue superpower. To act against the US effectively, the rest of the world would have to agree - in effect - to send the US to Coventry: to boycott all American goods: to refuse all American trade, imports or exports: to formally expell the US from the UN and from the Security Council: to act with unity. That would save us. But it's not going to happen. It's a Prisoner's Dilemma: there would always be enough nations willing to stick with the US no matter what evil it commits. After all, bloodthirsty tyrants have to stick together and support each other.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#25)
    by Al on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 05:05:17 PM EST
    Jl:
    Al, are you reading challenged?
    Nope. "Reaffirm" and "establish conditions" doesn't mean "police". Not even close. In fact, by stating strongly that Guantanamo should be closed, the UN Human Rights Commission is doing its job according to the Charter: It is reaffirming faith in fundamental human rights, and by firmly holding the US responsible for its actions, it is establishing conditions under which justice and respect for the obligations arising from treaties and other sources of international law can be maintained. If the UN were to remain silent on Guantanamo (which it could have), it wouldn't be doing its job. Of course the US can dismiss the Commission's demands. But just because you can doesn't mean you should. I'll point this out one more time, and leave it at that. You say "someone has to hold the US accountable". I couldn't agree with you more. I think that someone is you, as a US citizen who still has the right to vote. You are responsible for what your elected government does in the world, not the UN.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#26)
    by jimcee on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 05:35:36 PM EST
    There are six members that sit on the UNHRC who are on the Freedom House list of the worst human rights abusers: China, Cuba, Eritrea, Saudi Abrabia, Sudan and Zimbabwe. Many of the remaining 48 countries are non-democratic countries. The one democracy that is not allowed to even sit in on the UNHRC meetings is Israel. So, now explain why this report is valid and should be taken seriously? Except that it makes some people feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#27)
    by Al on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 06:40:58 PM EST
    Sorry Jimcee, but this is a case of the pot calling the kettle black. What with Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, and the CIA's flights to dump prisoners in countries where they are tortured, the US has lost all credibility when it comes to criticizing other countries for human rights abuses. If the current US regime doesn't want to be lumped together with the likes of Saudi Arabia or Zimbabwe, they should act differently.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#28)
    by Sailor on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:21:57 PM EST
    There are six members that sit on the UNHRC who are on the Freedom House list of the worst human rights abusers
    And now we have joined that list.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#29)
    by jimcee on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:35:40 PM EST
    Al, Actually the US is being condemned by those nations who kill, torture, dislocate and imprison thier own people for encouraging democracy. The US is a democracy regardless of what some preceincts pretend. I won't make up excuses for the existence of the Guantanamo Camp but I will say that if you think it is such a bad thing then use your democratic skills to elect a gov't that will abolish it. The people in the countries I named do not have that luxury. That is the difference between what you call the 'pot' vs 'the kettle black'. You, sir are allowed to express your opinions, protest and even create and openly support an alternative POV and party. You may even create your own movement if you would like. Because if you believe you can't convince people of your virtue that speaks more towards your POV or perhaps your dogmatic lack of charm than it does of your freedom to at least try. If you don't like Guantanamo then lobby to get it closed. If you want to ignore those that you have chosen as your allies i.e. Sudan, Zimbabwe, Suadi Arabia, China, Eritrea and Cuba, then that speaks volumes about your selective view of human rights. When you sleep with the dogs.....

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#30)
    by Al on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 10:37:51 PM EST
    Jimcee, we're not talking about voting or freedom of speech. (And frankly, seeing how protesters are usually treated, I don't think much of the freedom of speech). We're talking about torture and murder, and imprisoning people without charging them with anything and without the opportunity to defend themselves. In that respect, the Bush regime is as despicable as any of those you named. Human rights violators throughout the world get nothing but contempt from me. The Bush regime disgusts me equally. You can posture all you want, but like Lady Macbeth, you can't wash the blood off your hands.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#31)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 01:57:07 AM EST
    jimcee: Actually the US is being condemned by those nations who kill, torture, dislocate and imprison thier own people for encouraging democracy. Actually, the US is being condemned by five independent investigators of the United Nations Human Rights Commission. The 53 member states of the UNHRC include Finland, France, Hungary, India, Italy, Netherlands, United Kingdom, and the United States of America. These are the nations you are accusing of "killing, torturing, dislocating and imprisoning their own people for encouraging democracy". It is rather pointless to complain that you won't accept a report on Guantanamo Bay because the member nations of the UN Commission that condemned it have also committed human rights abuses.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#32)
    by jimcee on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 06:54:57 AM EST
    Al, Of course you have freedom of speech otherwise you wouldn't be commenting here. As far as how protesters are treated I haven't seen the recent videos of storm-troopers using truncheons and bullets on protesters but perhaps you could guide me to some to make your point. Jesurgelac, I didn't accuse those countries of human rights abuses just the six I names. It doesn't change the fact that those six nations are allowed onto the UNHRC and since you mentioned France in your list of countries I was wondering what you think of thier judicial system which can hold French citizens or any citizens for as long as it chooses without laying charges.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#33)
    by Jlvngstn on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 07:08:23 AM EST
    JER - Of course I am not forgetting about the Veto, that is the crux of the argument. The UN was set up to prevent bigger nations from taking advantage of smaller nations and the UN is basically useless if one of its veto members flouts the law. If the US can veto any censure, and the US is breaking international law or violating human rights (like China does repeatedly) then who is keeping the UN in check? What good is a body that is supposed to protect the "little guy" that is being run by the very people taking advantage of the "little guy"? I see you did not take the time to answer the question, which is frankly quite simple, NOW WHAT Al, I voted for Durbin, who has been rather outspoken about gitmo. I have not seen any democratic public relations effort to demand the closing of gitmo. I have not seen a collaborative effort by the dems to bring legislation to the floor to close gitmo. So if the US cannot muster up the courage to act in the best interest of International Human rights, and the UN cannot effect change, tell me WHO and HOW? Lots of smoke by the demo party on this issue but no legislative fire. Fence riding is no fun, especially when you fall on your nuts.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#34)
    by Jlvngstn on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 07:12:59 AM EST
    It is not just Republican senators who voted against de-funding a permanent prison at Guantanamo Bay. Seventeen Democrats, including John Kerry, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama, joined all Republicans senators except Arlen Specter in supporting the new prison construction.


    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#35)
    by peacrevol on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 08:42:31 AM EST
    Jimcee, Your arguments look great on paper but are not exactly realistic. Our political system is so watered down that we dont know what the people we vote for will do in different situations. It depends too much now on who proposes what and how decisions affect a politician's career. So even if we de-throne the ones that dont do what we think they should, there is no telling whether the next guy is any better. AND in the two party system, we pretty much only have two realistic choices when it really comes down to ballot time. Maybe Guantanamo should be closed...maybe not...I dont know. I'm not convinced that the pictures accurately depict usual procedures there. I've never been there, but from my experiences with militant Iraqis, they're often very paranoid, viscious, and fiesty people who stop at nothing to damage Americans personally, whether personally or indirectly. In a prison situation, it's hard to keep order. The blood on the floor in lots of pictures doesnt really convince me that well b/c there is likely a reason that someone spilled blood on the floor (ie they attacked guards). If that is the case, they're attacking marines and soldiers...not your everyday coffee and donut 9 to 5 desk jobber. Hence the reaction is to do what is necessary to keep the prisoner from doing much harm. As for the pictures of nude detainees...I cant see any logical reason for that, and I think it's rediculous. So really, I dont know whether closing the prison is right or not. BUT...the UN has done its job - stating its opinion. The reason this is there job is to let the world know what is going on and give nations a recommendation on what to do about it. If that's the UN's recommendation, I really believe that we (the US) should take it seriously and honestly consider following the recommendation of the UN.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#36)
    by Che's Lounge on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 09:04:17 AM EST
    Salon charges to visit. They are the vanguard of "Charge for access". I won't buy in. Some liberal site. The pics are going to go everywhere in a couple more days anyway, and I know what they show. Too bad racist Amerika doesn't give a rat's a**.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#37)
    by Slado on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 09:23:41 AM EST
    Forgot in all this progressive wholier then thou pontificating is who is actually "detained" at Club Gitmo and what these so called "human rights defenders" would choose to do with the "terrorists" detained there. I agree that an argument can be made against Gitmo but pretending that the people detained there are all innocent or that they can be properly delt with in our judicial system is absurd. Just like using a UN document to make any point in any argument is equally absurd.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#38)
    by Slado on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 09:25:16 AM EST
    PS If democrats really wanted to close Gitmo it be closed by now but the real truth IMO is they'd rather have it as a political point because deep down they want terrorists locked up in Gitmo as much as republicans. Other then a few true believers. Just being cynical.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#39)
    by Jlvngstn on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 09:38:00 AM EST
    Slado, I think everyone dems and repubs alike want terrorists locked up. What I believe is that more demos than repubs also want trials as is in practice with fairness. What I think is laughable is that the demos have done almost nothing to push this administration to provide real trials for those detained and to stop circumventing the geneva convention with the new classification. In short, the dems who have not pushed for trials and closing do not deserve to be lumped in with those who have voiced their opinions on the matter. Therefore, all things being equal, why vote for a dem and the party when there is a lack of a unified response on what used to be a core value of the democratic party, the right to a fair trial no matter how despicable the acts of the accused.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#40)
    by Sailor on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 09:41:35 AM EST
    If democrats really wanted to close Gitmo it be closed by now
    nice try, but rethugs control all 3 branches of gov't.What a silly argument, gitmo is dems fault ... sheesh!

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#41)
    by Jlvngstn on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 10:41:06 AM EST
    Let's try this, google Democrats legislation to close gitmo, or democrats unite against gitmo, or democrats unite period. Bush and co have been floundering in the wilderness for 3 years and the dems cannot make a dent in the PR machine. When i see a coordinated, unified effort by the dems to attack the validity of gitmo and the rights of the suspected "evildoers" I may be convinced that they give a rats arse. Until then, I will assume that when Karl Rove barks I can find them hiding under the bed.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#42)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 12:34:54 PM EST
    Jlvngstn... What I believe is that more demos than repubs also want trials as is in practice with fairness. I'm not sure why some of you don't get the WAR part of "we are at war". Please show me anywhere in the history of the world where prisoners captured on the field of battle were allowed to have access to the capuring country's legal system???? Bush and co have been floundering in the wilderness for 3 years and the dems cannot make a dent in the PR machine. That's because Dems jump on stuff like hunting accidents, trying to make moutains out of molehills...and the American public (as stupid as the libs like to think we all are) can see right through this BS. Until the Dems offer something other than the 'off the wall' finger pointing they now are so adept at presenting on a daily basis...they have NO prayer of getting elected dog catcher. They're all too busy trying to frame Cheney for attempted murder instead of paying attention to the real people trying to kill all of us. The president of Iran's speach barely got a mention over all the hunting hoopla..it's quite laughable! Want Gitmo closed? Agree to take them in at your house.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#43)
    by Jlvngstn on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 01:13:59 PM EST
    BB - You are too intellectually challenged for me to engage in discussion with. Please go back to your day job of mopping the booths in the Melrose Park xxx video stores.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#44)
    by Sailor on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 01:27:36 PM EST
    I'm not sure why some of you don't get the WAR part of "we are at war".
    Because only congress has the power to declare war and they haven't done so? And apparently you missed the part where several of tghem have been found innocent ... but we still hold them.
    That's because Dems jump on stuff like hunting accidents
    Gee, the vice prez shoots a guy in the face ... ah screw it, Jlvngstn was right. But I would have said crawl back under the bridge.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#45)
    by Sailor on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 01:35:30 PM EST
    I agree that an argument can be made against Gitmo but pretending that the people detained there are all innocent or that they can be properly delt with in our judicial system is absurd.
    No one pretends everyone there is 'innocent' - strawman down, medic, medic, strawman down! Why can't the judicial system deal with them? Is our judicial system corrupt? An inherently unfair system? Man, wrongwingers always bi*ch about folks receiving a fair trial, unless it's one of their own, and then no investigation is neccessary.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#46)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 04:04:38 PM EST
    jondee writes:
    ppj - "Oil for food." Thats getting to be like you yelping Chappaquidick every time you see the name Kennedy in print
    Wrong again. Now is your chance to go to the archives and prove me wrong. But you can't. sailor writes:
    And apparently you missed the part where several of tghem have been found innocent ... but we still hold them.
    And you have missed the fact that some of those released have been re-captured fighting the US. desertswine worte:
    This post is about Guantanamo.
    Oh, really?

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#47)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 04:25:30 PM EST
    jimcee: I didn't accuse those countries of human rights abuses just the six I names. And what relevance does your accusation have to the report from the independent investigators appointed by the UNHRC? These people are: Leila Zerrougui, from Algeria. Chairperson-Rapporteur of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention. Manfred Nowak, from Austria. Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. Asma Jahangir, from Pakistan. Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief. Paul Hunt, from New Zealand. Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health. Leandro Despouy, from Argentina. Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers. None of the independent investigators who compiled the report to the UNHRC are from China, Cuba, Eritrea, Saudi Arabia, Sudan or Zimbabwe. Now explain to me the relevance of your protest about these six countries?

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#48)
    by jimcee on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 07:14:31 PM EST
    That the independent reporters were appointed by a council containing those six nations perhaps? And although Pakistan is a US ally in the WOT they hardly have a reputation for being a non-repressive regime and seeing that Ms Jahangir was possibly too emotionally close to her subject, so to speak she may not be particularly objective. As regards to all those you named they all seem to come from the culture of NGOs that have an anti-American bent as well have caused many problems in the wake of thier 'do-good' tours. My point still stands and that is that the UN is hardly in a position to make accusations against any open soceity. The track record of the UNHRC, the UN forces in central Africa and the Oil for Food fiasco and the lack of oversight or prosecution of those involved in those perversions of the UN Mission in general is hardly inspiring. Perhaps there are abuses at Gitmo, I don't honestly know and either do the representitives of the UN as they have not been there every minute. I say just let all of the detainees go free and march them out of the gates of Guantanamo Bay's Camp X-Ray and into the worker's paradise of Cuba and let the Fidelista's deal with them. That might be a small payback for the Muriel boatlift disaster.

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#49)
    by Sailor on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 07:34:57 PM EST
    Jesurgislac , excellent research and comment!
    that the independent reporters were appointed by a council containing those six nations perhaps?
    Nice backtrack. My guess would be it takes a thief to know a thief. Bonus question: What do those nations and the United States have in common?

    Re: UN Comm'n: Close Guantanamo (none / 0) (#50)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Feb 18, 2006 at 03:28:15 AM EST
    jimcee: And although Pakistan is a US ally in the WOT they hardly have a reputation for being a non-repressive regime True, and if you'd clicked on the link I provided, you'd have seen that Asma Jahangir has
    spent most of her career defending the rights of women, religious minorities, and children of Pakistan. Aided in her mission by fellow activists and colleagues from the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, she has continued her battle for justice amidst constant threats to her safety. Her willingness to relentlessly defend victims of rape, women seeking divorce from abusive husbands, people accused of blasphemy, her work on the issues of child labor, and her continuous criticism of political parties has made her one of the most controversial figures in Pakistan.
    That the independent reporters were appointed by a council containing those six nations perhaps? Yes: they were appointed by a council also containing Finland, France, Hungary, India, Italy, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America. If the presence of a country which has committed human rights abuses on UNHCR devalues everything the UNHCR does, then plainly the US should set an example by withdrawing from the council itself in order to give the council more credibility. the Oil for Food fiasco You know, "Oil for Food" is such a mantra with American conservatives as an example of a UN failure that I honestly wonder if you realize that one of the nations most implicated in the failures and corruption of Oil for Food is, in fact, the US. Perhaps there are abuses at Gitmo, I don't honestly know and either do the representitives of the UN as they have not been there every minute. The abuses at Guantanamo Bay and other US gulags are sufficiently well-documented not only by the UN and by the Red Cross but by the US military itself to render this statement nonsensical. If you "don't know" that there are abuses at Guantanamo Bay, it is because you have never troubled yourself to read any of the publicly-available information about them. You have therefore no credibility at all when you complain about the report of the UN investigators. Do your research first, complain later.