“Senior” Obama admin official claims that Gitmo recidivism rate is Bush’s fault

Posted by: ST on January 7, 2010 at 7:11 pm

Plum Line’s Greg Sargent excitedly reports on an unverifiable claim he received from a “senior Obama administration official” on the issue of Gitmo recidivism:

One of the big stories of the morning — echoed widely by the news orgs and on the right — is that new government stats show that 20 percent of Gitmo detainees who have been released are thought to have returned to extremist activity. The story is expected to make it tougher to close Gitmo.

But what if all those detainees were released under Bush, and not under Obama?

That’s the case that was made to me by a senior Obama administration official. He claimed that the administration doesn’t believe that any of the detainees released under Obama have gone into terror-related activity — because the Obama administration has a better screening process in place to determine which detainees pose a threat.

The story in question involves a new and classified Pentagon report that says roughly one-fifth of released detainees are suspected or confirmed to have returned to terrorist activity — up from a lower estimate in April.

But the senior official says the report shouldn’t reflect badly on Obama policy. “We have been presented with no information that suggests that any of the detainees transferred by this administration have returned to the fight,” the official says.

The official suggested that the possibility that all the recividists were released under Bush shows that the previous administration didn’t do the work of screening detainees slated for release that the Obama administration is doing.

“The President created the Guantanamo Review Task Force to conduct the thorough work that had not been done before: to review the relevant information about each detainee, including the threat they pose, to determine whether they should be prosecuted, detained, or transferred,” the official says.

Um, um, but wasn’t the whole “controversy” surrounding Gitmo, as we were told by Obama and other self-serving Democrats and various “human rights” groups across the globe, was that we had to “close” Gitmo and either try the prisoners who were there or release them? Yes, I believe it was. Not only that, but as I wrote about a week ago, it wasn’t Bush who wanted to close down Gitmo, but he didn’t have a choice after all the whining and handwringing by the left, including the bleeding heart liberal lawyers –including some at AG Holder’s law firm – who defended some of the detainees, defenses that culminated into a couple of SCOTUS rulings that essentially forced the Bush administration to have to release Gitmo prisoners. The precise reason the administration didn’t want them to be released is due to the fear that they’d go right back to what they’re doing. But the left wouldn’t listen to reason. It was all about playing politics with our national security, and nothing more. And now the chickens have come home to roost.

Yet today the admin trying to blame the Bush administration for the fact that some of the Gitmo prisioners they released went back to doing what they do best – which is exactly what worried the administration the most, which is exactly what the left cared nothing about while using Gitmo as a political tool to bash Bush both on a national and international scale. And besides, the Obama administration is trying to take credit for the ‘care’ they’ve taken in the Gitmo prisoner reviewing process exactly why? Ed Morrissey wonders the same thing:

Er, how much does it matter when Obama has determined to release all of the remaining Yemenis anyway? The administration isn’t being choosy at all. They only began releasing Yemenis a few weeks ago, and stopped after getting embarrassed when the EunuchBomber attack made the situation in Yemen impossible to dismiss. Until then, though, the White House had insisted publicly that they would eventually turn over all of the Yemenis except any involved in chargeable “crimes” back to the nearly-failed state of Yemen.

Not only that, but this “senior” official would have everyone believing that the administration actually plans on indefinitely detaining numerous Gitmo prisoners that have not been prosecuted. Read this line again:

“The President created the Guantanamo Review Task Force to conduct the thorough work that had not been done before: to review the relevant information about each detainee, including the threat they pose, to determine whether they should be prosecuted, detained, or transferred,” the official says.

Excuse me, but wasn’t indefinite detention without trial one of the main complaints the left threw out at Bush on the issue of Guantanamo Bay? Hell yes it was. Yet this guy is saying the “task force” will determine whether or not detainees should be prosecuted, detained, or transfered. If they had a choice in this all along as to whether or not to detain without trial Gitmo terrorists who they deemed high value enough to detain indefinitely, then why the heck didn’t they choose to detain KSM on that basis? After all, they’ve said they’re going to do that anyway, regardless of whatever the outcome of his “fair” NYC trial is, right?

I sure as hell wish this administration could get their facts and stories straight. I also wish they’d make up their damned minds. I also wish that for once, just once, that they would stop blaming everyone else for their own missteps. Obama’s “buck stops with me” remark from earlier today just doesn’t cut it. It’s typical of juvenile narcissists like the ones we have in this administration – and typical of salivating supporters like Andrew Sullivan, who buys the “it’s Bush’s fault” argument by this senior official to a “T” – to blame everyone but themselves when something goes wrong, which can be a deadly attitude to take in these uncertain times because when you blame everyone else for your problems, that means you’re not accepting responsibility and therefore won’t find any need to engage in any meaningful corrective action to try and prevent the problem from happening again. IOW, you don’t learn from your mistakes when you continually shove responsiblity for them onto someone else.

Will this administration ever learn?

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12 Responses to ““Senior” Obama admin official claims that Gitmo recidivism rate is Bush’s fault”


  1. Neo says:

    “The strident left-wing critiques of the Guantanamo facility have all centered around the fact that detainees there are horribly mistreated and conditions unbearable. But when push comes to shove, it would seem concerns about Guantanamo are overblown, and the prisoners there know that being held under the Geneva conventions outside the U.S. is much preferable to a maximum security prison in the U.S.”

  2. Xrlq says:

    Gitmo recidivism is entirely Bush’s fault. If it weren’t for Bush, these recidivists would never have been anywhere near Gitmo.

  3. Ved says:

    It is maddening to constantly hear what a screwed up mess Our Fair President has “inherited”, while he; and his Administration; continually focuses on ideological and partisan issues. I know they weren’t perfect, but I miss President Bush and VP Cheney. This pansy we have in office now scare the hell out of me…

  4. Marshall Art says:

    Will this administration ever learn?

    I think the question is really, is it capable of learning? I’m guessing, “no”. There’s not much there to suggest such a thing.

    And what’s with that comment by “Xrlq”? I don’t get it.

  5. Sarah says:

    When you can’t figure out how to do the job that you recently, voluntarily took on, you blame the previous guy to hold that position. It works very well for quite a few gigs, but not for POTUS.

  6. 2Hotel9 says:

    It is W’s fault, all of these terrorist a$$holes should have been executed immediately upon capture, as the Geneva Accords requires.

  7. Jo says:

    At the risk of being crass, when will he grow a pair and stop blaming Bush for everything from those pesky ‘freedom fighters’ continuing to pick on us to an ingrown toenail? I guess in the State of the Union it will be, “My first year as reigning king would have been perfect but that nasty, evil Bush left me with such a mess, who could have done any better?!”

  8. Carlos says:

    In answer to your question in Obama’s theoretical SOTU speech, Jo, blindfold yourself, open a phone book and place your finger on a spot on the page. Any phone book from NYC to Brownstown, WA will do.

    You’ll have a better than 50% chance of pointing to someone who could do a better job, and certainly less than a 5% chance of getting someone who would be worse.

  9. Oldfolks65 says:

    Marshall you said,

    And what’s with that comment by “Xrlq”? I don’t get it.

    I am taking that as a tongue in cheek comment and a correct statement. Without Bush those “recidivist’ would be somewhere else trying to come up with new ways to kill Americans. If Obamalamadingdong continues on his merry path to love and peace through political blather, that is exactly where they will be in the near future.

  10. Oldfolks, that’s the way I took X’s comment, too. Totally tongue in cheek.

  11. Marshall Art says:

    That’s cool. I’ve not visited in a while and ain’t hip to who’s who anymore. Didn’t wanna say something stupid.

  12. Xrlq says:

    Not to worry, Marshall; OF and ST took it correctly, purely tongue in cheek. My serious point was that of course the recidivists would have been recidivists no matter who was in charge; they just wouldn’t have any connection to Gitmo. :)