Obama defends terrorism policy, closing Guantanamo - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Peace and Justice League holding Spokane rally Thursday afternoon

Obama defends terrorism policy, closing Guantanamo

Camp 4, the medium security facility within Camp Delta at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba Camp 4, the medium security facility within Camp Delta at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

ADVISORY: The Peace and Justice Action League of Spokane will be holding what they are calling an 'anti-torture' rally Thursday afternoon in Downtown Spokane. The league will be protesting Spokane based psychologists James Mitchell and Bruce Jensen who trained CIA interrogators. The rally begins at 4 p.m. in the 100 block of N. Washington.

WASHINGTON. - President Barack Obama has declared that operating the terrorism-era prison at Guantanamo set back the "rule of law" in the United States and compromised its moral standing in the world.

Obama used a historic backdrop featuring the Constitution, Bill of Rights and Declaration of Independence to defend his decision to shut down the Cuban facility by January 2010. He said he knew when he ordered it closed, it would be a "difficult and complex" issue.

The president also said that "we're cleaning up something that is quite simply, a mess, a misguided experiment."

Obama asserted that America cannot lose sight of its own moral values in the war against terrorism and said Guantanamo has turned out to be a recruiting item for the enemy.

Obama: 50 Gitmo detainees cleared for transfer

President Barack Obama says 50 of the detainees held at Guantanamo Bay have been cleared for transfer to other countries.

The Obama administration is still waiting for other nations to agree to take the men who have been held for years as terror suspects.

Obama said Thursday that government lawyers are continuing to review the cases of all 240 Guantanamo detainees. The government has been negotiating with nations like Yemen and Saudi Arabia for months to deal with some of the detainees.

Obama is seeking to place up to an estimated 100 Yemeni detainees in Saudi rehabilitation programs.

Cheney defends Bush security policies

Former Vice President Dick Cheney is defending the Bush administration's national security policies, saying they were rooted in a determination not to forget the terrible harm of September 11.

Cheney said Thursday that though the administrations and policies have changed, the stakes for the country have not.

He said the Bush administration was driven by a desire to make sure September 11 did not become "a prelude to something worse."

He said that when President Barack Obama takes steps he supports, such as increasing forces in Afghanistan or reversing his plan to release incendiary photos of abused detainees, he will support him.

Cheney delayed his speech until after Obama finished speaking.

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