Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) finally told the truth about President Barack Obama’s plan to bring Guantanamo detainees into the United States. The New York Times (and others) has Senator Reid on the record:
Mr. Reid in his comments, however, was unequivocal in insisting that the terror suspects never reach American shores.
“You can’t put them in prison unless you release them,” he said. “We will never allow terrorists to be released in the United States.”
Setting aside the 17 Uighurs at Gitmo, think about what Senator Reid just said.
Attorney General Holder has stated many of the 240 remaining Gitmo detainees are too dangerous to release yet cannot be prosecuted. Some number of those who are prosecuted will likely receive less than a life sentence. If they are here, federal judges will someday order them released and no other nation will take the worst of the worst; they would be released free someday onto America’s streets.
Now remember the 17 Uighurs at Gitmo. They have admitted to being trained and committed terrorists. Incredibly, a military review board said they are no threat to America when they are all associates of the East Turkistan Islamic Movement. The ETIM has a long relationship with al Qaeda and its founder swore allegiance to Osama bin Laden. On April 9, 2009, the Obama administration added the ETIM’s current leader, Abdul Haq, to the Treasury Department’s terrorist list. As they pose a direct threat to Chinese businessmen and diplomats here, who wants to risk becoming collateral damage?
A federal judge ordered them released here last October:
The ruling set the stage for a confrontation between the courts and the [Bush] administration. John C. O’Quinn, a deputy assistant attorney general, suggested that immigration or Department of Homeland Security officials might detain the men when they were taken to the Washington area. Mr. O’Quinn argued that only the executive branch of the government, not the courts, could decide about immigration. Mr. O’Quinn said such detainees would have no legal status in the United States. “Normally,” he added, “the law would potentially require them to be taken into some sort of protective custody.”
Judge Urbina said such arrests would not be appropriate. But he did not specify what he might do if the men were seized after being released by the Pentagon. “I do not expect these Uighurs will be molested by any member of the United States government,” Judge Urbina said sharply. “I’m a federal judge, and I’ve issued an order.”
Fortunately, the House and Senate will deny, for the moment, President Obama the funding needed to close the detention facilities at Guantanamo. Even Senator Reid knows that it would be reckless to bring terrorists into America.