Friday Night Owls: Amnesty Int’l calls on President Biden to shut down Guantánamo military prison

Friday Night Owls: Amnesty Int’l calls on President Biden to shut down Guantánamo military prison

Night Owls is a themed open thread appearing at Daily Kos seven days a week.

In response to reports that the Biden administration has launched a formal review of the future of the Guantánamo Bay detention facility, Daphne Eviatar, Director of the Security with Human Rights Program at Amnesty International USA, released the following statement:

“We are pleased to hear that the Biden administration wants to review the U.S. policy of almost 20 years of indefinite detention without charge of Muslim men at an offshore prison. For almost two decades, the United States has denied justice to the hundreds  of men the government has kept detained at Guantánamo Bay indefinitely, without charge or trial. Forty men remain there today. It is long past time to close it down.

“President Biden must commit to finishing what former President Obama failed to do: putting an end to this human rights atrocity by immediately transferring detainees not charged with crimes to countries where their human rights will be respected, providing fair trials to anyone charged, without resort to the death penalty, and finally shuttering this discriminatory and unlawful detention facility once and for all.” […]

On January 11, 2021 Amnesty International released a report highlighting ongoing and historic human rights violations at the Guantánamo Bay detention facility, as detentions there entered their 20th year and as a new President prepared to enter the White House. The report called for renewed urgency on this issue, accompanied by a genuine commitment to truth, accountability and remedy, as well as a recognition that indefinite detention at Guantánamo must not be allowed to persist any longer.



Now it is OFFICIAL and just made public. Harriet Tubman has been inducted into the United States Army Military Intelligence Corps Hall of Fame as a full member (not honorary), acknowledging her work as a spy and scout during the Civil War! We got her in!

— Dr. Kate Clifford Larson (@KCliffLarson) February 12, 2021


“You can be for the rule of law or you can vote to acquit Mr. Trump. But you can’t be for both.”
          ~~Michael McFaul (Feb. 11, 2021)


On this date at Daily Kos in 2004—Pure and Simple: Equal Rights:

Thirty years ago this month, Right-to-Life activists in Boulder, Colorado—scurrilously egged on by the local, chain-owned daily newspaper—challenged one of the nation’s earliest tendrils of what they called the “gay agenda.” 

Then, as now, the gay agenda was a quintessential American agenda— the acquisition of equal legal protection by yet another group of our country’s second-class citizens. At issue in Boulder was not gay marriage or civil union, but another basic right: non-discrimination in employment. Shortly before Christmas, 1973, the nine-member city council—with its two-year-old liberal majority at the helm—passed one of the first four or five such ordinances in the U.S. Some gay activists and progressives to the left of the council had wanted something more: a clause proscribing non-discrimination in accommodations. 

The legislation was initiated by Mayor Penfield Tate II, elected by the unpaid council as the first Black mayor in Colorado history, chosen in a city with less than 2% African-Americans. A lesbian acquaintance told Tate she had been fired specifically because of her sexual orientation. Tate knew about injustice first-hand. And he saw the matter quite simply: an abrogation of the constitutional right of every American not to be legally diminished for background or belief or biology.

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