Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Orders to close Guantanamo attacked: take action today!

We expected this to happen. President Obama’s bold first moves on Guantánamo Bay and military commissions have been met by brazen campaigns of misinformation from those who want to retain disastrous Bush administration policies.

Fox News is raising the specter of terrorists living in people’s “backyards.” Senators are saying that bringing detainees to the U.S. “will endanger American lives.” Rush Limbaugh is spreading the totally unsupported claim that 61 already-released detainees have “returned to the battlefield.” And, naysayers continue to make claims that our criminal justice system is incapable of prosecuting terrorism suspects.

They want to derail President Obama’s efforts to put an end to indefensible Bush administration practices and policies. That’s why we must get the truth out. How can you help?

Write a letter to the editor to get the facts out there and to make it clear that people all across America support President Obama’s actions to restore our nation’s commitment to justice and the rule of law.

We can’t let Gitmo apologists have the last word. By acting today, you can help counter their dangerous rhetoric.

President Obama’s executive orders were the crucial first steps. But, there is still much that needs to be done before the United States is once again a nation we can be proud of. Instead of backing down the way Rush Limbaugh and others are trying to force him to do, we need the President to follow through all the way.

That means insisting that Guantánamo Bay is shut down as soon as possible. It means making sure that the policies of the Obama administration do not allow for any form of indefinite detention. And, it means rejecting calls for a new system for prosecuting detainees. Our justice system and time-tested federal courts are fully capable of handling sensitive national security cases without compromising fundamental rights.

Help get the facts out there by writing a letter to the editor. Or, learn the facts and post on your favorite blogs or news sites.

Finally, America is headed in the right direction. We can’t afford to let irresponsible voices dominate the ongoing debate over Guantánamo Bay and detention issues.

Let’s make our voices heard until Guantánamo Bay is finally closed and every element of the Bush system of injustice is totally dismantled. Thanks for standing with us.

Anthony D. Romero
Executive Director