Cue the scary music…
Crank up the volume and right click on scary musicand open in a new tab for the full effect.
Shortly after 6:00 A.M. Thursday, four Chinese Muslims (Uighurs) were released from detention in the U.S. prison facility at Guantanamo Bay and resettled as free men in Bermuda (roughly 500 miles due east of Charleston, South Carolina) with guest worker status. The four men released Thursday were among 17 Uighurs who had been captured and held by the United States since 2001, despite being determined to not be enemy combatants early on.
It was also announced that the remaining 13 Uighurs will be resettled in the island nation of Palau, in the South Pacific, with Palau President Johnson Toribiong claiming a U.S. aid payment had nothing to do with the decision.
As reported by the Associated Press report in Thursday’s New York Times:
Bermuda Premier Ewart Brown said the men will be allowed to live in Bermuda, a British territory in the Atlantic, initially as refugees but they would be permitted to pursue citizenship and would have the right to work, travel and ”potentially settle elsewhere.”
Brown said negotiations with Washington over settling the Uighurs began last month and he had no security concerns because the men had been cleared by U.S. courts…
[Paulau President]Toribiong said the Uighur detainees from China’s arid west would start their new lives in a halfway house to see how they acclimatize to his tropical archipelago west of the Philippines…
Beijing said Thursday that all 17 Uighurs are terrorists and should be handed back to China. Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said China ”opposes any country taking any of these terrorist suspects.”
Abdul Nasser, one of the four detainees who landed in Bermuda early Thursday morning, issued a statement through his lawyers, saying: ”Growing up under communism we always dreamed of living in peace and working in free society like this one. Today you have let freedom ring.”
Meanwhile scared, ignorant, paranoid, marginalized pawns of the conservative ideologues, from the back woods of Maine to the streets of Wasila, Alaska, are filling their larders, breaking out their ammunition, locking their doors, battening down their hatches, booby trapping their front doors, and hiding in their moldy, dark bedroom closets, with just the useless, cynical right wing racist screamers like Rush Limbaugh Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, or Michael Savage on their portable radios and portable TV’s to give them their daily dose of lies and twisted history, stoking their fears and paranoia, while keeping them ignorant of the truth.
What might happen next? Likely eventual adjudication and disposition of the remaining Guantanamo detainees, (despite any amount of political posturing or delaying tactics or fear mongering ginned up) some may end up in American federal penal custody, some may find themselves deported to other countries where they may be incarcerated there, or maybe not. What must happen, is that what ever form of adjudication and ultimate disposition results for each detainee, it must be done under the light of day, and according to the rule of law and the ethical values of our justice system.
Will those detainees removed from Guantanamo eventually find their way to Main Street, U.S.A, and wreck havoc and terror upon Americans? Only in the minds of Dick Cheney and those who perform as his stooges. What is probably statistically guaranteed is that another lunatic fanatic, such as Timothy McVeigh, Theodore Kaczynski, John Allen Muhammad, or James W. von Brunn will surface sooner or later, another domestic terrorist from within our borders, and strike against his or her peace loving, law abiding neighbors, before any foreign initiated threat may harm us at home.
Let us not succumb to fears based upon ignorance, ignorance caused by the withholding of all known facts by devious, dissembling, lying, criminal government officials (whether former or current officials). We must require our government to lay out everything it knows truthfully about the remaining detainees, in an open, transparent manner, and then follow the rule of law in dealing with each remaining detainee. Let the chips fall where they may.
And while we are at it, let us not overlook what the release of four former U.S. prisoners, four Uighurs who’s crime was that they tried to seek a better life, outside of China, have now been unleashed upon the Bermudian people.