Contact: Josh Holly; 202.226.3988
WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Armed Services Committee Ranking Republican Duncan Hunter (R-CA) today stated that he will oppose any attempts by Congressional Democrats to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility and import dangerous terrorists into American communities.
“Many of these terrorists held at Guantanamo have killed or threatened Americans,” stated Hunter. “Khalid Sheikh Mohammed admitted earlier this month to masterminding the attacks on the United States on September 11th.”
Options for moving these terrorists to detention facilities based in the continental United States were unveiled during a House Armed Services Committee hearing earlier today.
Congressional Democrats listed the following American communities as potential relocation points for terror suspects held at Guantanamo Bay:
- Fort Leavenworth, Kansas;
- Fort Knox, Kentucky;
- Fort Sill, Oklahoma;
- Fort Lewis, Washington;
- Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina;
- Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, California;
- Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California;
- NAVBRIG Norfolk, Virginia;
- WPNSTA Charleston, South Carolina;
- NAVSTA Pearl Harbor, Hawaii;
- SUBASE Bangor, Washington;
- NAS Jacksonville, Florida;
- NAS Pensacola, Florida;
- MCB Quantico, Virginia;
- Edwards Air Force Base, California;
- Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico; and
- Lackland Air Force Base, Texas
Hunter stated that “the potential closing of Guantanamo and the relocation of dangerous terrorists into our local communities are bad for the following four reasons:
- “This action will undermine our current detention operations by parceling out the detainees to different facilities across the country, as no single facility can currently house all the detainees held at Guantanamo.
- “Transferring detainees from Guantanamo will create an opportunity for these dangerous enemies to recruit new followers and disseminate their terrorist skills. Moreover, it will increase the threat of an attempted escape and could potentially endanger thousands of American civilians.
- “It will make the new detention facilities prime targets for any terrorist attack that al-Qaeda is able to mount within our borders.
- “It will have severe implications on our detention policy that has been upheld by the federal courts because it will raise uncertainties about foreign detainees’ rights under the U.S. Constitution.”
He concluded, “Five years into this long war, we have crafted new policies tailored to this new conflict that will work—now it is up to us to exercise discretion and give this policy a chance.”