In a time that Americans are feeling very unsure about our safety, I fully agree with the
Patriot act, which was passed only six weeks after September eleventh. It is time we start
protecting America. The patriot act is crucial to national security.
I do not feel that the war on terror has opened the doors to abuse of civil rights of the
prisoners being held at Guantanamo Bay Naval base in Cuba. I feel that we need to be more
cautious of who we let walk our streets. We have to remember the visions of September
eleventh, they were not pretty and many innocent people died. Had we been more
cautious then on who we let into our country, we would not have been as vulnerable and the
incident of September eleventh might not have happened. If we detained some of these prisoners
for a long period of time, until we can be completely sure that they are not a threat to us
Americans, than so be it.
According to CNN.com prisoners at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base which is referred to as
“Camp x-ray” are provided with an eight-by-eight foot outdoor cell with a concrete floor, roof
and surrounded by a chain linked fence. On arrival they are given a mat to sleep on, a towel for
showers and a towel for praying . They are given soap, toothpaste, a toothbrush and they are
able to take a shower each day. They get served three meals a day with water. Two meals are
hot and one meal meets the Muslim religious requirements. On entry they are provided with
medical care. According to US Attorney General John Ashcroft, “They have the right food,
shelter and the right environment to avoid injury”.
I think we are providing these prisoners more comfort than the many homeless people
living in the United States. It is sad that we worry more about the prisoners who are a potential
threat to all Americans than we do for our own people who have been American citizens all of
their life. We need to get a grip on reality… this is war!
According to Eugene Fidell, these detainees who are labeled enemy combatants will be
able to have what is called a revue tribunal. The purpose of this will decide whether the
detainees qualify for this label. The board who will decide this is made up of three military
officers, people who had no prior involvement in the decision to label enemy combatants. Of the
three people there will be a lawyer, a second lawyer as a legal advisor, recorder to the panels and
the detainee will have an opportunity to defend himself. As stated in the Philadelphia Inquirer
on November 28,2004, two people accused of being members of the taliban and a man accused
of having links to Al -Qaeda appeared before a review tribunals at the U.S. Navy base in
Guantanamo Bay , in Cuba. The hearings are to decide whether the 550 prisoners have been
correctly labeled “enemy combatants,” and if not they should be released. So far, one Pakistani
prisoner has been released.
In closing, I feel the detainees are being offered a fair situation. They are given food,
shelter and they are given a revue tribunal to prove themselves innocent. It makes you wonder
how our people are being treated, hopefully as well as we are treating theirs.