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Romero Letter in Times

Gabe Rottman,
Legislative Counsel,
ACLU Washington Legislative Office
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June 29, 2007

In response to the Gitmo white wash op-ed yesterday. Here’s Anthony’s letter:

Colonel Davis finds fault with critics who compare Guantánamo to totalitarian gulags, and responds by extolling the prison’s culturally appropriate meals and available Korans. But he misses the central point about the wholesale despair of the men held at Guantánamo: even if, by some miracle, any of the men charged as war criminals by military commissions were acquitted, there is no guarantee that they would go free.That’s because, since they have been designated enemy combatants, the administration claims the right to hold them until the cessation of hostilities in the war on terror. It’s just another way of saying they will be held indefinitely, with no real hope of release.More important, the jerry-rigged legal system used at Guantánamo fails to uphold the best of American values. In any large organization, it’s inevitable that someone doesn’t get the word. We suggest that Colonel Davis check with Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates, who advocates the closing of Guantánamo.