Former Secretary of State Colin Powell said today he favors immediately closing the Guantanamo Bay military prison and moving its detainees to U.S. facilities.He also votes in favor of the justice system (pre-Bush):
The prison, which now holds about 380 suspected terrorists, has tarnished the world's perception of the United States, Powell said.
"If it was up to me, I would close Guantanamo. Not tomorrow, but this afternoon. I'd close it," he said.
"And I would not let any of those people go," he said. "I would simply move them to the United States and put them into our federal legal system. The concern was, well then they'll have access to lawyers, then they'll have access to writs of habeas corpus. So what? Let them. Isn't that what our system is all about?"Well, yea.
Think Progress has the transcript here. He has some other choice words on international diplomacy. Like this:
And so I think it is short-sighted not to talk to Syria and Iran and everybody else in the region, and not just for the purpose of making a demand on them, and “I’ll only talk to you if you meet the demand I want to talk to you about.” That’s not the way to have a dialogue in my judgment.And he sums up things very nicely:
[E]very morning I pick up a paper and some authoritarian figure, some person somewhere, is using Guantanamo to hide their own misdeeds. So essentially we have shaken the belief that the world had in America’s justice system by keeping a place like Guantanamo open and creating things like the military commission. We don’t need it, and it’s causing us far more damage than any good we get for it.Too bad it's a few years too late.