Friday, May 22, 2009

Flashback: May 2006, Bush Said He Wanted to Close Guantanamo

Off the Wire

Off the Wire:

WASHINGTON, May 22, 2009 -- With all of the controversy in the news about President Obama's decision to close the detention camp at Guantanamo Bay, it seems appropriate to point out that former President George W. Bush, in May 2006, said he wanted to close the camp.

In a May 2006 interview reported by CBS News, Bush told ARD German television. "I very much would like to end Guantanamo; I very much would like to get people to a court."

"And we're waiting for our Supreme Court to give us a decision as to whether the people need to have a fair trial in a civilian court or in a military court," Bush said.

In June 2006, speaking at a press conference in the White House Rose Garden the day after returning from a surprise trip to Baghdad, Bush said that he realized the detention center was an "excuse" for critics to claim that American was guilty of hypocrisy over its core values.

"I’d like to close Guantanamo," Bush said. "But I also recognise that we’re holding some people that are darned dangerous, and that we’d better have a plan to deal with them in our courts."

In the press conference, the Times Online noted that Bush also said:
"No question, Guantanamo sends, you know, a signal to some of our friends - provides an excuse, for example, to say, ’The United States is not upholding the values that they’re trying [to] encourage other countries to adhere to."

"My answer to them is, is that we are a nation of laws. Eventually, these people will have trials and they will have counsel and they will be represented in a court of law."
(Report from newswire sources.)

Bush Says He Wants To Close Guantanamo
Bush: 'I'd like to close Guantanamo Bay'

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