Biden Dissatisfied With Continued Guantanamo Bay Restrictions

Biden Dissatisfied With Continued Guantanamo Bay Restrictions

( – President Joe Biden signed the annual National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for 2022 into law on Monday, December 27, 2021. Senate Bill 1605 lays out the yearly budget and authorizes expenditures for the US Department of Defense. Widely supported by both parties, the signing of the legislation remains a routine presidential duty. However, that didn’t stop Biden from expressing dissatisfaction with portions of the measure.

President Biden released a statement about the NDAA later that day, praising the “vital benefits” provided by the measure that improve “access to justice for military personnel” and support America’s national defense efforts. However, he spent part of the statement slamming two sections of the bill restricting his authority over prisoners held at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp (Gitmo).

Section 1032 of the NDAA continued the current restriction on using federal funds to transfer the custody or control of Gitmo prisoners to foreign nations. Similarly, Section 1033 prevents the unrestricted transfer of Guantanamo Bay detainees into the US.

Biden spent the rest of his statement attempting to justify his concerns. For instance, he claimed the restrictions could create difficulties complying with final judgment orders by the courts.

However, considering that many former Gitmo detainees rose to prominence again in terrorist groups, is it really that unreasonable to restrict executive branch officials’ ability to transfer prisoners without adequate Congressional oversight?

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