They’re readying an executive order right now that will confirm that certain detainees – read: the murderous, terrorist scum that we already weren’t releasing – can be continued to be held indefinitely without trial. The fig leaf here is that the new proceedings (unlike those of the wicked, wicked Bush administration!) will be ‘more adversarial’ – which means whatever you want it to mean, of course – and that lawyers for the murderous, terrorist scum can ask again after the administration refuses to let said murderous, terrorist scum go the first time. Maybe even every year.
What’s going on here is, of course, that Congress is on the verge of passing legislation that would effectively make it impossible to transfer the cases of murderous, terrorist scum to regular American courts. Congress is doing this, earlier Democratic rhetoric to the contrary, because there are actual limits to legislative stupidity, and it’s pretty stupid to put murderous, terrorist scum into a civilian court system not particularly designed to handle it. For that matter, the Obama administration itself is unlikely to have really believed any of the nonsense that it spouted off on the subject in years past… but they have to do something, seeing as progressives are already fairly livid with them over the tax issue.
This is their something. If you look at the details, there’s no actual path described that would, if followed, allow murderous, terrorist scum to walk. Regular, small-fish jihadis that we’ve caught and captured, sure: then again, there was already a system in place to handle that. What we’re apparently getting here is a Kabuki quasi-court where the antiwar movement’s pet lawyers can posture, pound the table… and pat themselves on the back for speaking truth to power after power tells them that their clients aren’t going anywhere, any time soon.
Personally, if a Republican President tried this kind of smoke-and-mirrors trick on the Right we’d go ballistic, but the Left does things differently, bless their hearts. But perhaps I’m wrong. Perhaps the actual executive order will be a lot more stringent and quantitative than I’m giving it credit for. Perhaps they really will depopulate Gitmo, instead of leaving it full up for the next administration. Perhaps.
Also, perhaps I am the Emperor of Siam.
Moe Lane (crosspost)
PS: By the way, none of this means that President Obama is a centrist, or that his staff is, or that the executive branch is. Even centrists believe in something: if the President believes in anything besides himself and his family, it’s not readily obvious.
In other words, the term that you’re probably looking for is “opportunistic suckweasels.” Or just “liars.”