During his presidency, Barack Hussein Obama made it his goal to close Guantanamo Bay, the base in Cuba where the United States detains terrorists. Unfortunately for Obama, he couldn’t quite get this done before leaving office, and Donald Trump just made an announcement about Guantanamo that is sure to make Obama’s blood boil.
The New York Times reported that Trump’s White House is almost done with an executive order that would direct the Pentagon to bring future Islamic State detainees to the Guantánamo Bay prison. An up to date version of the draft was released this week, and it called for Defense Secretary Jim Mattis to use Guantánamo to detain suspected members of “Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and associated forces, including individuals and networks associated with the Islamic State.”
The Trump administration is moving forward with this despite warnings from government national security officials that the order would give federal judges an opportunity to reject the executive branch’s theory that the war against the Islamic State is legal, even though Congress never explicitly authorized it. They say this could become a problem when reviewing an inevitable habeas corpus lawsuit filed by an ISIS detainee.
“It raises huge legal risks,” said Jack Goldsmith, a Harvard Law School professor and former senior Justice Department official in the Bush administration. “If a judge says the Sept. 11 authorization does not cover such a detention, it would not only make that detention unlawful, it would weaken the legal basis for the entire war against the Islamic State.”
Trump, however, has made it clear that he wants to make cracking down on terrorists his top priority. What do you think about this? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.