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              >> Urgent Appeal: Guantanamo Bay!

Prisoners arriving
Prisoners when they arrive at the camp.

Prisoners arriving

Prisoners at the camp

Prisoners at the camp

London protest
Protest in London, England.

Map of Guantanamo Bay
Map of Guantanamo Bay.

Guantanamo Bay prison

Please help to free the Guantanamo Bay 86!

Our gulag at Guantanamo Bay is now in its 11th year of shameful operation.
There are 166 prisoners currently held in Guantanamo Bay Prison (see www.CloseGuantanamo.org). You should be aware of the horrific plight of 86 of these prisoners (NY Times Editorial “Close Guantanamo Prison”, Nov 25, 2012).

According to a two-year-old report -- the January 22, 2010 Final Report of the Guantanamo Review Task Force -- these 86 people have been cleared for release by intelligence analysts, law enforcement agents, attorneys within the Department of Justice, the Department of Defense, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Director of Naval Intelligence, the Department of State, the Department of Homeland Security, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation plus other unnamed agencies within the intelligence community. All of these agencies testify unanimously to the innocence of these 86 prisoners currently held in Guantanamo Bay Prison.

This report can be found at: www.justice.gov/ag/guantanamo-review-final-report.pdf.

President Obama has the constitutional power to shut down Guantanamo Bay!

(from: Fox News Insider, January 4, 2013)

After threatening a veto, President Obama signed a defense bill that places restrictions on his ability to transfer prisoners out of Guantanamo Bay. However, he attached a signing statement that claims he has the power under the Constitution to override the limits set by Congress in the bill, which funds the Defense Department for the next year.

Obama vowed to close the military prison upon taking office in 2009, but Congress made sure the prison remained open by placing limits on the transfer of terror suspects to the U.S. or to other nations.

Yet, according to Judge Andrew Napolitano, if he chooses to, President Obama has constitutional power to shut down Guantanamo Bay. Napolitano explained that the signing statement – “a piece of paper on which the president puts his objections about the law as he signs it into law” – has been used by every administration since Ronald Reagan, and that George W. Bush used signing statements 1,200 times.

Regardless of what Congress does though, the judge believes President Obama could, if he chooses, shut down Guantanamo Bay whenever he wants and transfer the detainees elsewhere. The reason is that the president, as commander of the armed forces, has the power to choose where military prisoners are housed, and as “the chief law enforcer” he can decide where the Justice Department houses civilian prisoners.

“Can the courts undo that? They probably wouldn’t touch it with a ten-foot pole and they would say ‘it’s a political dispute between the White House and the Congress, let them resolve it,’” Napolitano said. Napolitano added that Congress cannot pass a law that limits powers granted to the president in the Constitution.

Why this gross injustice?

Congress refuses to appropriate funds for their release, and Constitutional scholar, Nobel Peace Prize awardee President Obama has been largely silent on the issue.

Call President Obama, call your congressperson, as well as Senators Gillibrand and Schumer.

President Obama: 202-456-1111
Rep. Brian Higgins: 716- 852-3501
Rep. Chris Collins: 716-634-2324
Rep. Louise Slaughter: 585-232-4850
Rep. Tom Reed: 716-379-8434
Sen. Gillibrand: 716-854-9725
Sen. Schumer: 716-846-4111

The other 80 remaining prisoners also don’t deserve to be incarcerated in our gulag either!