President-elect Donald Trump urged President Obama to keep terrorists currently occupying the military prison at Guantanamo Bay where they are in a tweet Tuesday, but it appears that Obama isn’t listening.
“There should be no further releases from Gitmo,” Trump wrote. “These are extremely dangerous people and should not be allowed back onto the battlefield.”
Unfortunately, Obama is more concerned about getting as close as he possibly can to fulfilling his campaign promise to close the facility. Congressional Republicans blocked him from making that promise a reality, but Obama has nonetheless spent the last eight years paring the prison’s population down to nothing. And his administration is apparently set to put the finishing touches on that mission in the coming weeks.
According to several different reports, the Obama administration plans to release somewhere between 17 and 22 additional Gitmo prisoners before the president leaves office. Currently, 59 detainees remain at the prison – down from 242 when Obama was sworn in. Many of the prisoners released by both Obama and the Bush administration ultimately returned to the battlefield, and some are even believed to have killed Americans in the years since their release.
Obama kicked things off this week with the release of four Yemini detainees, who will now be put under the care of Saudi Arabia. Since, when it comes to trusting foreign governments with U.S. security, who could be more reliable? In Saudi Arabia, the terrorists will reportedly undergo some form of de-radicalization treatment – the details of which we would love to see.
But even if we’re blindly optimistic and believe that none of these terrorists will ever kill again, what’s the point of taking the chance? What are we gaining by doing this? At least with his argument for closing Gitmo, Obama could say that it was being used as propaganda by our Islamist enemies. A ridiculous, transparent piece of nonsense, but at least it was an argument. By doing it this way, we’re releasing the worst of the worst while still giving the terrorists their so-called propaganda.
But, whatever. We’re tired of trying to figure out why this man does the things he does and, frankly, it never mattered. Whether you blame it on incompetence, Muslim sympathy, naivete, or something worse, the end effect is the same. It’s enough for now to take solace in his imminent farewell and to hope he doesn’t do too much damage in the meantime.