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Don't Let Obama Fool You: Gitmo Isn't Closing — It's Being Outsourced

Obama pledges to close Guantanamo (again), describing the prison as "expensive and unnecessary." He's right — it's cheaper and less messy to outsource indefinite detention and torture, which is exactly what he's already doing

This post first appeared on Russia Insider

Hooray! It's finally happening, "again":

President Obama on Tuesday pledged once more to shutter the prison at Guantanamo Bay during his final State of the Union address.

<figcaption>You can't protest torture if it's a state secret</figcaption>
You can't protest torture if it's a state secret

 “(The prison’s) expensive, it’s unnecessary and it only serves as a recruitment brochure for our enemies," he said to applause from supporters.

Obama’s comments come as his administration ramps up efforts to reduce the prison population at Gitmo.

Obama is absolutely right: Gitmo is expensive and unnecessary. It's also a bit of a PR nightmare. Why not just outsource indefinite detention and torture?

A quick refresher:

The Obama administration will continue the Bush administration’s practice of sending terrorism suspects to third countries for detention and interrogation, but pledges to closely monitor their treatment to ensure that they are not tortured, administration officials said Monday.

Human rights advocates condemned the decision, saying that continuing the practice, known as rendition, would still allow the transfer of prisoners to countries with a history of torture. They said that promises from other countries of humane treatment, called “diplomatic assurances,” were no protection against abuse.

Obama groupies insist that their beloved president is committed to ending the repugnant practice of kidnapping brown people and holding them in cages, without trial, until they are murdered or die of old age. After all, Club Gitmo is no longer accepting new members. See? No more bad torture-stuff — at least not at American military compounds (this is not true, but we shall return to it later). Behold, the joys of outsourcing Gitmo:

The three European men with Somali roots were arrested on a murky pretext in August as they passed through the small African country of Djibouti. But the reason soon became clear when they were visited in their jail cells by a succession of American interrogators.


The men are the latest example of how the Obama administration has embraced rendition — the practice of holding and interrogating terrorism suspects in other countries without due process — despite widespread condemnation of the tactic in the years after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Outsourcing indefinite detention and torture is cheap — and you don't have to get your hands (too) bloody. But most importantly, by exercising  various "state secrets" privileges, Obama doesn't have to tell anyone that "extraordinary rendition" is even taking place. In other words: It's like Gitmo, but no more whiny tree-huggers calling for "accountability" or "basic human rights".

Like all of Obama's self-declared accomplishments, closing Gitmo will do little aside from creating a smokescreen to cover for ongoing crimes.

Don't be fooled. Gitmo isn't closing — it's just being shipped overseas. Darn, more hard-working Americans out of a job.



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