The Washington Independent
The Washington Independent

Republicans Use Nigerian’s Ties to Yemen to Oppose Closing Gitmo

Following up on Spencer’s post, while President Obama’s critics are silent on the detention of alleged would-be Northwest Airlines Flight 253 bomber Umar Farouk

Candice Burns
Last updated: Jul 31, 2020 | Dec 28, 2009

Following up on Spencer’s post, while President Obama’s critics are silent on the detention of alleged would-be Northwest Airlines Flight 253 bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab at a federal prison in Michigan, the failed attempt to blow up the flight to Detroit on Christmas has fast become another tool in the arsenal of Republicans seeking to torpedo the closing of Guantanamo Bay.

As Politico reported over the weekend, Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich.), ranking member on the House Intelligence Committee, to Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) are loudly connecting the dots between the Nigerian suspect’s visit to Yemen and the fact that about 90 Yemeni prisoners remain at Guantanamo Bay to conclude that the prison camp in Cuba should not be shut down.

“Yesterday just highlights the fact that sending this many people back—or any people back—to Yemen right now is a really bad idea,” Hoekstra said. “It’s just dumb. … If you made a list of what the three dumbest countries would be to send people back to, Yemen would be on all the lists.”

King, meanwhile, called it “a major mistake” to send anyone back there. “I don’t think Guantanamo should be closed, but if we’re going to close it I don’t believe we should be sending people to Yemen where prisoners have managed to escape in the past,” he said, citing the claims that Abdulmutallab had trained there.

Even House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) now seems to be hesitating on what to do with the Yemenis. “I’d, at a minimum, say that whatever we were about to do we’d at least have to scrub it again from top to bottom,” he told Politico.

Actually, the U.S. government has been “scrubbing” Yemen quite a bit lately. As The New York Times reports today: “The Pentagon is spending more than $70 million over the next 18 months, and using teams of Special Forces, to train and equip Yemeni military, Interior Ministry and coast guard forces, more than doubling previous military aid levels” in an attempt to help Yemen crack down on terrorism.

In addition to helping Yemen root out al-Qaeda, such assistance is also likely aimed at helping President Obama close Guantanamo Bay. Long before the incident on Christmas, the Yemeni government was seen as unstable and unable to control the rise of terror groups within its borders. And the problem of the Yemeni men imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay — including about 34 who have been cleared for release — has been a thorn in the side of the administration’s plans to close the detention camp since they were announced last January.

The six repatriated to Yemen earlier this month had been seen as a sign of progress on that front. The Christmas bombing attempt could become a major setback.

Candice Burns | Candice Burns has worked in the real estate industry for a long time. She understands the importance of a home for long-term happiness and has dedicated her career to placing people in the home of their dreams. Candice's passions for helping others during difficult times and a strong interest in high-end, luxury homes drove her to explore real estate. She's been in the real estate business for ten years and has helped over 3,500 people find homes during that period. She earned a bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Los Angeles. She's worked with some of Los Angeles' most prestigious real estate firms.


Rep. Paul Ryan to deliver SOTU response

Chairman of the House Budget Committee Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) will deliver the Republican response to the State of the Union Tuesday, according to Mike Allen

Rep. Paulsen allies with medical device industry to relax FDA oversight

Source: Flickr; Republicanconference ( On the heels of the Minnesota Independent story last week about U.S. Rep. Erik Paulsen’s cozy financial relationship with the medical device industry, the New York Times reported Tuesday that some health professionals are alarmed by Paulsen’s push to relax Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversight

Rep. Paulsen touts balanced budget constitutional amendment

In a post for the conservative blog True North , U.S. Rep

Rep. Patrick McHenry: Please, Conservatives, Fill Out Your Census Forms!

The conservative congressman from North Carolina, a constant critic of the census -- one of the people who sounded the alarm about politicization when the

Rep. Paulsen, Karl Rove the latest to get ‘glittered’

Rep. Erik Paulsen and former Bush staffer Karl Rove were both showered with glitter at the Midwest Leadership Conference Friday

Rep. Perlmutter to hold constituent meet-up in grocery store

Colorado Congressman Ed Perlmutter will hold a Government in the Grocery constituent meet-up this evening from 5-7 at the Safeway at 38th and Wadsworth in Wheat Ridge. The address is 3900 Wadsworth. The meeting, where Perlmutter typically sits at a folding table and talks to whomever shows up, is free and open to the public

Rep. Perlmutter criticizes House measure that would eliminate 800K federal jobs

Congressman Ed Perlmutter today issued a scathing statement criticizing the House of Representatives for passing a spending bill that could put nearly a million federal employees out of work. The Colorado delegation voted strictly on party lines, with all four Republicans voting in favor of the bill and the three Democrats voting in opposition. Perlmutter’s statement: “My number one priority is to get people back to work because that’s the best thing we can do to pay our debt and move forward toward economic stability

Rep. Pete Stark Won’t Dignify Constituent by, er, Micturating Upon His Leg

In the tradition of Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), California Democratic Rep. Pete Stark revealed at a recent town hall gathering that there are limits to what

Rep. Peace, ACLU seek investigation of soldier’s allegations of racial discrimination in Afghanistan

Both Rep. Steve Pearce (R-NM) and the American Civil Liberties Union agree: There needs to be an investigation into Spc.

© Copyright 2021 The Washington Independent All Rights Reserved

Terms & Privacy |