Earlier this week, President Obama transferred 4 Guantanamo detainees to Saudi Arabia. That leaves 55 hardened terrorists incarcerated at Camp Delta.
But before he leaves office, the president is planning to transfer up to 22 more prisoners to various countries, despite the fact that the review board set up to determine which prisoners can safely be released says that many of those remaining terrorists have promised to return to jihad.
The 4 detainees transferred to Saudi Arabia will undergo “rehabilitation” therapy at a facility the Kingdom says has had great success in “deprogramming” violent terrorists.
Earlier this week, the White House responded to incoming President Donald Trump’s urging to stop transferring prisoners out of Guantánamo, saying it plans to liberate more detainees before Obama leaves office.
The Obama administration reportedly told Congress last month that the sitting president would reduce the population of Guantánamo, also known as Gitmo, by 19 to 40 detainees.
Now, the Daily Mail reports:
President Obama is planning to transfer at least 22 additional Guantanamo Bay detainees out of the military detention center before he leaves office later this month, DailyMail.com has learned.
The group being released will be drawn from those held at Guantanamo – who include an accused senior al Qaeda bomb-maker, the terror group’s top financial manager, and two intended 9/11 hijackers, who have all been held in the Cuba-based U.S. detention facility for more than a decade.
Of the 59 prisoners still held at Gitmo, 22 have been cleared for release by Obama’s multi-agency parole-style board known as the Periodic Review Board (PRB) and nearly half (27) are considered “forever prisoners,” or too dangerous to release.
However, the PRB has made the decision to liberate prisoners who had already been designated too dangerous to release, which means the “forever prisoner” designation has not prevented the Obama administration from transferring out detainees.
According to the Miami Herald, the remaining 10 prisoners are still undergoing war crimes proceedings at military commissions, including six who are facing death penalty tribunals.
The Daily Mail reports:
The list of “recommended for transfer” prisoners includes a number of top al Qaeda operatives and commanders
Some of the recommended transfers have also vowed to return to jihad if they are ever released, according to reports from US military officials. They have also threatened to assassinate the U.S. president, kill American citizens, and attack other world leaders who are allied with the West.
This is what happens when national security is pushed aside in favor of a political agenda. President Obama promised to close the prison camp at Guantanamo Bay and he is willing to sacrifice American lives to fulfill that pledge.
As for the Saudi “deprogramming” facility, the Middle East Institute’s study of the program found that it “has proven unable to rehabilitate the most radical and dangerous militants. Furthermore, the program’s utility as a model for other nations is limited by its reliance on Saudi-specific factors.”
The recidivism rate of Gitmo detainees returning to the fight is close to 30%. That’s nearly one in three terrorists – a low number considering how dangerous the remaining prisoners are considered to be.
President-elect Trump opposes any more releases from Gitmo, but he is helpless until January 20. Trump will be left to deal with any potential fallout from Obama’s release of people who want to kill Americans.