Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Battle Over Guantanamo

©2008 Charles Dharapak/Ap Images

Today President Obama and former Vice President Dick Cheney gave contrasting speeches about America's stance on terrorism.

President Obama focused his address on his unwavering decision to close down the Guantanamo Bay detention center. Despite a wave of opposition from Congress and the FBI, Mr. Obama says he will continue to fight for the prison to be closed.

American Values

In his speech Mr. Obama said that America's fight on terrorism should not compromise American values. He said that the United States are known all over the world for shutting down institutions like this. Both Congress and the FBI said during a heated debate yesterday that the president has not outlined a secure plan for shutting down the prison and transplanting detainees. President Obama responded to peoples' fear of former detainees plotting terrorist attacks, by reminding people that fear cannot outweigh the government's ethical approach.

"Americans must demonstrate that our values and institutions are more resilient than a hateful ideology," said President Obama.

The Rebuttal

Former Vice President Dick Cheney gave a rebuttal almost immediately after President Obama’s speech. Mr. Cheney’s speech was titled “Keeping America Safe.” He is leading the Republican opposition against closing down the prison, saying it will make America more vulnerable. defending Bush administration techniques at Guantanamo. He defended Bush administration techniques at Guantanamo, saying they were necessary to prevent future attacks.

"We can't forget what happened in 9-11 and we can't let 9-11 be a prelude to something worse," said Mr. Cheney.

President Obama's speech is on the heels of Attorney General Eric Holder Jr.’s announcement that the first Guantanamo detainee will go to trial on U.S. soil. Ahmed Ghailani will go to a criminal civil court in New York City. Ghailani was indicted by a federal grand jury in New York for the attack on U.S. embassies in Africa in 1998. The bombing killed 224 people, including 12 Americans.

No comments:

Post a Comment