Argument: US courts can successfully try Guantanamo detainees

Issue Report: Guantanamo Bay Detention Center


Thomas Wilner. “We Don’t Need Guantanamo Bay”. Wall Street. December 22, 2008 – There are approximately 250 prisoners still at Guantanamo. They fall into two basic categories. The first, by far the smallest (probably less than 40 detainees) is made up of people accused of being al Qaeda fighters who have planned or engaged in violent acts against innocent civilians. Doing so is a crime, and anyone who intentionally engages in or materially supports those acts should be tried, convicted and imprisoned.

“The price of our good name”. New York Times (Editorial). November 23, 2008 – TRY THE REST IN FEDERAL COURTS Americans will hear from former members of the Bush administration and supporters of its system of injustice that the federal courts cannot handle these cases because they involve sensitive secrets, or that terrorism is not appropriately handled as a law-enforcement issue.

Since Sept. 11, 2001, the federal courts have successfully prosecuted about 100 terrorism cases, and the courts deal routinely with national secrets. The real reason Mr. Bush and his team avoided the federal courts for the Gitmo detainees was that the evidence in so many of these cases is wafer-thin or unusable because it was obtained through coercion and torture.