Debunking Another Gitmo Myth




Newsweek
.

Amnesty International
. Jimmy Carter.

Dick Durbin.
The

Guantanamo Bay-bashing
continues.

In a rant published Tuesday, the Minnesota Star
Tribune
actually castigated Durbin for "caving
in"
on his

slanderous remarks
comparing U.S. treatment of
detainees at Gitmo to torture and genocide by Nazis,
Soviets, and Pol Pot. The paper wrote that Durbin
shouldn`t have apologized and decried the entire
operation as a "hellhole." [Editorial: Durbin`s message/U.S. must end prisoner abuse]

But it`s not just unhinged liberals who keep piling
on.

The

"maverick"
Sen. John McCain echoed one of the
Left`s most oft-cited and erroneous complaints about
Gitmo on NBC`s

Meet The Press
this weekend that detainees
have been denied trials:

"The weight of evidence
has got to be that we`ve got to adjudicate these
people`s cases, and…if it means releasing some of
them, you`ll have to release them. Look, even Adolf
Eichmann got a trial."

(Can we put a lid on the Nazi analogies already? Crikey. A Knight-Ridder reporter was too smitten to be
bothered by his Eichmann-invoking hyperbole:

"McCain is emerging as a voice of conscience and nuance
on the stay-or-go Guantanamo issue."
Nuance?)

GOP Sen. Lindsay Graham, another newly christened
"maverick"
who appeared on MSNBC`s

Hardball
last week, lodged

similar allegations
about the absence of trials for
Gitmo detainees:

"We need a procedure and
process that will allow us to determine who an enemy
combatant is, interrogate them to make us safer in a
humane way, and set up trials for the worst offenders
and repatriate those who — who don`t meet the category
of a — of a threat. That, to me, would look good to the
world. It would make us safer."

My friend, Judge Andrew Napolitano, made a similar
assertion on Fox News`s "O`Reilly Factor" last week:

"The government is not giving them those trials."

And now, the facts:

Every single detainee currently being held at
Guantanamo Bay has received a hearing before a military
tribunal. Every one.

As a result of those hearings, more than three dozen
Gitmo detainees have been released. The hearings, called


"Combatant Status Review Tribunals,"
are held
before a board of officers, and permit the detainees to
contest the facts on which their classification as
"enemy combatants"
is based.

Gitmo-bashers attack the Bush administration`s
failure to abide by the Geneva Conventions. But as legal
analysts Lee Casey and Darin Bartram told me,

"the status hearings are,
in fact, fully comparable to the `Article V` hearings
required by the Geneva Conventions, in situations where
those treaties apply, and are also fully consistent with
the Supreme Court`s 2004 decision in the

Hamdi v. Rumsfeld

case."

Treating foreign terrorists like American
shoplifters—with full access to civilian lawyers,
classified intelligence, and all the attendant rights of
a normal jury trial—is a surefire recipe for another
9/11. That is why the Bush administration fought so hard
to erect an alternative tribunal system

long established
in wartime in the first place.

The few critics who acknowledge the existence of the
tribunals argue they aren`t sufficient. They

"provided due process in form, but not in substance,"

as Newsday put it. That view is shared by a
Carter-appointed liberal judge, but an earlier decision
by a Bush-appointed judge upheld the tribunals.

In the end, courts will almost certainly affirm the
legality of the Gitmo tribunals, which as noted, were
modeled after the due process standards described in the
Hamdi decision.

That ruling, may I remind you, addressed the
detention of a

U.S. citizen
as an enemy combatant. As former
Attorney General William Barr noted last week in
testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee,
"Obviously, if these procedures are sufficient for

American citizens
, they are more than enough for
foreign detainees."

Do John McCain and the anti-Gitmo gang actually
believe otherwise, or are they too clueless to realize
the implications of their gulag-Pol Pot-Nazi-Eichmann-hellhole
harangues?

***

Errata: Last week, I

wrote
that Barbara Walters "reportedly pronounced
[an airplane encounter with a nursing mom] `gross
and disgusting.`"
The quote came from The Calgary
Sun
,

Ted Byfield,
June 12, 2005, but Walters

did not use those words
as she frowned and
complained she was "uncomfortable." My apology
for the error. Walters also informs me that Elizabeth
Hasselbeck has not completely given up nursing, and that
Walters was "on a crowded shuttle," not
first-class. All the more reason to cut the mom some
slack.

Michelle Malkin [email
her] is author of

Invasion: How America Still Welcomes Terrorists,
Criminals, and Other Foreign Menaces to Our Shores
.
Click

here
for Peter Brimelow`s review. Click

here
for Michelle Malkin`s website.

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