Listen in vain to NPR's report for anyone mentioning torture, war crimes, violations of international law at Guantanamo. Conveniently, with such acts unmentioned, the issue of accountability and restitution never comes up. For Northam the only important issue is the difficulties that closing Guantanamo will present for the US government, "specifically what to do with the roughly 250 prisoners still held at Guantanamo."
To articulate the quandries of the poor, befuddled US government, who better to turn to than US government/military insiders such as Scott Silliman (see above), Commander Glen Sulmasy (of the Coast Guard Academy), and Matthew Waxman (of the Pentagon, State Department and Hoover Institution). One outsider, Vincent Warren with the Center for Constitutional Rights is mentioned for a very brief comment on favorable international attitudes to the new Obama administration. Here's how the cast performed:
- Silliman (who can't decide whether torture is effective) is on to argue for courts martial type proceedings as opposed to normal court proceedings that can be too "long and complicated."
- Sumasy, who is gung-ho for a more focused "war on terror" (in spite of what Juan Cole and Tony Karon think), is featured in this report for his advocacy of "hybrid courts or national security courts."
- Waxman (who to his credit fought against torture from his Pentagon posting) is on to emphasize that the only problem with sending the detainees somewhere like Bagram Air Base (Bagram!) is that it would not address the fundamental issue of what legal process detainees are "entitled" to. You have to ask why NPR wasn't covering Waxman back in October of 2007 when it mattered.