Hoekstra calls on Obama to rescind decision to close Guantanamo Bay prison
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Press Release)- U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra, Republican-Michigan, the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, issued the following statement to mark the failure of the Obama administration to meet its rushed, self-imposed one year deadline to shutter the terrorist detention facility at Guantanamo Bay and implement the so-called High Value Detainee Interrogation Group (HIG):
“In the year since President Obama made the poorly considered, hasty decision to close Guantanamo Bay, the number of terrorist plots targeting the United States has gone up and public reports of detainee recidivism have shown an alarming increase. Shockingly, we also learned this week that a full year after cutting the CIA out of terrorist interrogations, the Obama administration has also failed to implement another flawed policy – developed without transparency or consultation with Congress – to put federal law enforcement in charge of intelligence collection via a High Value Detainee Interrogation Group.
“While I continue to believe that the Christmas bomber should have been treated as an enemy combatant, the President should at least ensure that his own national security policies are being executed to collect intelligence to protect us from attack, and that the intelligence community has a leading role. Neither happened here and a valuable opportunity to collect intelligence was wasted. The Obama administration’s failures on Guantanamo Bay, Fort Hood and Detroit, show the consequences of politically-motivated, haphazard, national security decision-making without implementation plans.
“In an embarrassing turn-of-fate, the same week President Obama released six terrorist detainees to Yemen, the country served as the launch-pad for a Christmas day terrorist attack in the skies over Detroit. The president made the release decision despite the fact that he knew Yemen’s ungoverned spaces are home to a terrorist organization in-part fronted by former Gitmo detainees, and whose charismatic Yemeni-American “e-imam” may have inspired the Fort Hood terrorist attack that left 14 dead.
“The president has still not answered how America’s national security is improved by closing the terrorist detention facility in Cuba and moving terrorists to a small town in Middle America. President Obama also refuses to be transparent with the American people by declassifying the number of former terrorist detainees who have returned to the battlefield to fight American forces or making information available on the known issues, challenges and threats related to holding the detainees.
“In light of President Obama’s failure to meet his self-imposed closure deadline, I call on him to rescind his executive order to close the Guantanamo Bay terrorist detention facility. The president should also restore the CIA’s interrogation responsibility abroad and ensure a better response to domestic threats. It is also time for congressional Democrats to allow hearings and oversight into the president’s flawed terrorism policies and their troubled implementation, and to stop blocking votes on the numerous Republican bills related to properly holding and securing terrorist detainees.”
Hoekstra, along with Republican Leader John Boehner of Ohio , and other ranking Republicans, introduced the Keep Terrorists Out of America Act, H. R. 2294, to (1) affirm Congress’ opposition to transferring or releasing terrorists held at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility into the United States; (2) prohibit the administration from transferring or releasing any terrorist detainees at Guantanamo Bay to any state without express approval from the state’s governor and legislature; and (3) prohibit the president from transferring or releasing a terrorist detainee into the United States unless he provides notification and certification to Congress.
Preceding provided by Congressman Hoekstra