The Guantanamo Bay detention camp, established in 2002, is a military prison located at our Naval Base in Guantanamo, Cuba. The stated reason for its existence is to â€œdetain extraordinarily dangerous prisoners, to interrogate prisoners in an optimal setting, and to prosecute prisoners for war crimes.â€ Most Guantanamo prisoners were captured in Afghanistan and have been detained for more than 12 years without being charged. Some of these inmates are â€œindefinite detaineesâ€ – prisoners considered too dangerous to be released but, due to insufficient evidence, cannot be tried in court. Advocates and former prisoners have accused our military of human rights abuses by subjecting these detainees to torture, sexual degradation, forced drugging and religious persecution. At least 6 Guantanamo detainees are reported to have committed suicide and 9 others have reportedly died in custody, but defense lawyers contend these numbers are understated. Prisoners have conducted several hunger strikes which have resulted in camp guards force-feeding detainees. President Obama campaigned on a promise to close this facility but Congress has prevented him from locking these prisoners up in stateside federal prisons or sending them abroad. There are now 143 detainees remaining at Guantanamo Bay even though 73 of these men were cleared for release years ago. The remaining 70 detainees are awaiting Congressional approval for transfer to stateside federal penitentiaries. Those opposed to releases say these prisoners should stay behind bars until we can assure they will not return to the battlefield. One recent study confirmed that 107 of 620 detainees released from Guantanamo, or 17%, had returned to terrorism as of last July, and another 77, or 12%, are suspected of having done so. Those opposed to this facility say Guantanamo Bay has been a shameful failure since it opened. They claim indefinitely incarcerating those who have not been charged or tried violates everything weâ€™re fighting for and everything we stand for as a nation.
Pending Legislation: None
I oppose reforming current Guantanamo policy
I support identifying a legislator who will sponsor a bill to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility; conduct detainee trials; relocate those found to be guilty to stateside federal correctional facilities; parole those who are found to be eligible; and repatriate those not tried