Jan 24, 2009

When imagination roams free

There are some very entertaining reasons floating around for why Gitmo shouldn't be closed. "I think the first thing we have to remember is that we're talking about terrorists here," says House Minority Leader John Boehner "Do we bring them into our borders?", invoking the spectre of the terrorist-as-illegal-immigrant, working cash in hand as a nanny or gardener, while fiddling their green card applications. GOP House Minority Whip Eric Cantor warned: "Most families neither want nor need hundreds of terrorists seeking to kill Americans in their communities," implying a hitherto untapped ability, on the part of the terrorists, to bust out of high security prisons at will and wreak their mayhem. Lest we mock, National Review's Jim Geraghaty points out that "A detainee who escapes from any of the U.S. sites is within quick reach of terror targets, potential hostages, means of escape, etc.... It's hard to picture militia members, the Crips, Bloods, or what have you doing something as extreme as, say, crashing a plane into the prison to faciliate an escape and/or provide martyrdom to their brethren." For sheer economy, this is he winner, artfully combining the two things everyone knows about terrorists — that they crash planes into buildings and they live in Gitmo — into one phantasmagoric specter. Not even prison can hold these mighty beings.  

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