What Would Obama Do With Gitmo's Inmates?

Just how dangerous will an Obama presidency be for America? With the election upon us, this must be one of the issues in the minds of all Americans as they go to the polls.  

Consider just one aspect of that issue:  Barack Obama wants to close the terrorist detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.  So does John McCain.  But we know John McCain. He’s not about to do anything that’s going to endanger Americans.  

Can we say the same about Barack Obama?  I think not.  How would Obama handle the inmates there?  And — given the fact that this war goes on and other terrorists will be captured — how are Obama and Biden going to handle them?  

Driven by a Leftist ideology that claims showing “kindness” to terrorists begets kindness from terrorists, Obama has long fought to ban military tribunals and provide enemies captured on the battlefield with their day in court. As he said in San Antonio in June of this year: “We’re going to restore habeas corpus…We’re going to lead by example — by not just word but by deed. That’s our vision for the future.”

When the Military Commission Act was up for a Senate vote in 2006, Obama went on record lamenting the fact that our name was being sullied internationally by the Bush Administration’s policy of trying captured terrorists in “Combatant Status Review Tribunals.” The great Obama said these tribunals allowed detainees “no real chance to prove their innocence with evidence or a lawyer.” He said these tribunals eliminated “the right of habeas corpus [through which] we could have given the accused one chance — one single chance — to ask the government why they are being held and what they are being charged with.”

It just seems that Obama is more worried about the rights of terrorists than he is about the lives these terrorists are taking throughout the Western World. And he realized he was giving voters this impression by voting against “Combatant Status Review Tribunals” — thus when casting his vote, he admitted he would “be criticized as caring more about the rights of terrorists than the protection of Americans.” This rhetoric is positively surreal.

Let’s be honest: Obama’s approach to terrorism is far too similar to Bill Clinton’s to suit me. You remember Clinton, don’t you? He’s the president who treated terrorism as a crime to be handled by policemen and our court system. It was Clinton’s method of fighting terrorism, a method very much like the one Obama advocates, which made the attacks on 9/11 possible. John McCain’s campaign has been making this point for months.

On June 17, 2008, McCain’s “foreign policy adviser Randy Scheunemann, along with former CIA director Jim Woolsey and former Navy secretary John Lehman, slammed Obama for…proposing a ‘law enforcement approach" to battling terrorism.’” McCain’s team understands “that proving the guilt of terror suspects in a court of law [has proven] almost impossible, and that the use of law enforcement in handling the 1993 bombing suspects was a ‘material cause’ of the September 11, 2001, attacks because the CIA was not able to see the evidence and case files.” Moreover, “Scheunemann said Obama was ‘practicing the policy of delusion’ which Woolsey described as ‘an extremely dangerous and extremely naive approach toward terrorism.’” When it comes to fighting terrorism, it just seems like Obama lives in a dream world.

And just as we have seen Obama talk out of both sides of his mouth on gun issues, anyone who really weighs his words on fighting terrorism will find that Obama is in contradiction with himself here as well. In a campaign commercial Obama is currently running, he claims to “believe we should hunt down terrorists before they strike again” as a military helicopter flies over a battlefield. Yet he is also promising to close down Guantanamo Bay if elected. This begs the question:  What does Obama intend to do with these terrorists once “hunted down?” If he’s not going to send them to Guantanamo Bay, where’s he going to send them?

Does he intend to just send them back to their countries once he captures them — countries like Pakistan, which frees them immediately? Or Yemen, a place where bribes are so rampant that even those convicted in Yemeni courts are allowed to roam the streets freely?  Maybe he simply wants to bring terrorists who are determined to destroy the United States into our communities and put them in U.S. prisons, where al-Qaida can mount attacks to free them as they do in Afghanistan. If so, in prison will they be provided “learning materials” so they can better their anti-Western education on the tax-payer’s dime while awaiting trial in the already overburdened U.S. court system? These are serious questions that need to be answered.

Perhaps Obama just means to kill them outright? He gave this impression in the same press release where he voiced his opposition to military tribunals: “Now, let me be clear — for those who plot terror against the United States, I hope God has mercy on their soul, because I certainly do not.”  But given the fact that Obama appears to be even less hawkish than John Kerry, I doubt that terrorists will take these words too seriously.

Yet we must take them seriously. And as this election season approaches its last hours, voters need to grapple with the fact that it’s easy to proclaim you will hunt down terrorists, and just as easy to intimate that you will kill them outright. But if it’s all just talk and you don’t really intend to hunt them down relentlessly or kill them, crucial problems remain unsolved.

In the end, when all his messianic rhetoric and tough talk is coupled with his anti-war and anti-military legislation record, one question remains: When it comes to terrorism and captured terrorists, what would Obama do?

The “Lawyers for Gitmo Detainees” believe they know what he’d do, thus they’ve endorsed him for president. That one endorsement should be enough to cause us to vote McCain/Palin on November 4.