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From the end of this Grauniad article on the Guantanamo hunger strike:

President Obama vowed to shut the camp in his first year of office, but his efforts were stymied by Congress and have apparently been shelved. Earlier this year, the State Department office meant to deal with resettling Guantánamo prisoners was closed down.

...

Meanwhile, those advocating prisoners' rights have also criticised a recent announcement that will end the only civilian flight that goes to the base. Earlier this week Florida firm IBC Travel said it had been ordered to stop flying to the base from May 1 at the latest.

That will mean lawyers, journalists and human rights workers will only be able to get to the base aboard a military flight – something that requires permission from the Pentagon. "It will certainly make it a lot more difficult to get there at a time when we all need increased access," said Farah.

A bit more on the flight story:

Navy halts commercial flights to Cuba

MIAMI, March 18 (UPI) -- The U.S. Navy has ordered a commercial flight service to cease flights to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, citing a long overlooked regulation.

Capt. John Nettleton ordered the Florida flier IBC Travel to quit service to the naval base by April 5, although the Navy had given them until May 1 to comply with its directive, The Miami Herald reported Monday.

Commercial flights from one small service or another have made the trips to and from Guantanamo since the 1980s, the newspaper said.

However, "after a detailed review of Federal Regulations it has been brought to the attention of the installation commanding officer that allowing IBC Airways to operate out of NS Guantanamo Bay is a violation of regulation 32CFR766," a spokeswoman for the base Kelly Wirfel said in an email.

Wirfel said lawyers, journalists and Red Cross volunteers can fly to the base on the weekly military flight from Andrews Air Force base near Washington, D.C. Permission to take the flight must come from the Defense Department's Office of Military Commissions, she said.

Civilian workers at the base can fly to Guantanamo for a fee on a military shuttle between Jacksonville, Fla., and Norfolk, Va., the newspaper said.

The base is famously home to 166 military prisoners, who were granted access to legal representation by the Supreme Court in 2004.

"Of late, the Defense Department has been trying to restrict lawyers' access to imprisoned clients who do not have pending cases, it has been violating the attorney-client privilege, and now it is eliminating the only non-military route to Guantanamo," said attorney Ramzi Kassem, who visits the base frequently to visit with clients.regularly to meet detainees.

"Having no other options doesn't just harm the prisoners and their lawyers. It also hurts workers, service members and their loved ones," Kassem said.

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So looks like instead of closing down Gitmo, Obama might be throwing $50 million at it to build some more prisons. I have no problem with the prison personally, but it's so funny how adamant Obama was about closing it before he got elected and now it seems a massive afterthought.

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So looks like instead of closing down Gitmo, Obama might be throwing $50 million at it to build some more prisons. I have no problem with the prison personally, but it's so funny how adamant Obama was about closing it before he got elected and now it seems a massive afterthought.

 

Obama knows he can't run again, so he can kind of do whatever he wants now, to a point... Public opinion doesn't matter if you can't run again in 4 years.

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So looks like instead of closing down Gitmo, Obama might be throwing $50 million at it to build some more prisons. I have no problem with the prison personally, but it's so funny how adamant Obama was about closing it before he got elected and now it seems a massive afterthought.

 

Obama knows he can't run again, so he can kind of do whatever he wants now, to a point... Public opinion doesn't matter if you can't run again in 4 years.

To an extent. But it's one thing speaking up against something and saying your against it and then a couple of years later actually supporting the cause you were so adamantly against. I think what irks me about it in general is the fact that IMO, Obama get's alot of free passes in the US Media and very rarely has to answer to issues such as this.

Edited by LockStockVilla
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So looks like instead of closing down Gitmo, Obama might be throwing $50 million at it to build some more prisons. I have no problem with the prison personally, but it's so funny how adamant Obama was about closing it before he got elected and now it seems a massive afterthought.

 

Obama knows he can't run again, so he can kind of do whatever he wants now, to a point... Public opinion doesn't matter if you can't run again in 4 years.

To an extent. But it's one thing speaking up against something and say your against it and then a couple of years later actually support the cause you were so adamantly against. I think what irks me about it in general is the fact that IMO, Obama get's alot of free passes in the US Media and very rarely has to answer to issues such as this.

Agreed. 

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Huge Supreme Court decision today, regarding gay marriage rights. The ruling should come down within the next 4 or 5 hours. Potentially historic civil rights decision...

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  • 4 weeks later...

Land of the slaves. What I hate most about America is the assertion that they are land of the free and the world leader in Democracy. No, it's a disgrace to Democracy when $$$ buys everything.

 

If there was 90% public support for a bill in a real democratic country in Europe it'd pass in a heartbeat. We can't expect the same standards with the United States, the disgrace that country brings to the word democracy. 

 

Next time I see a stars and strips flag, I will spit on it. Shameful country. Shameful. With an incompetent, cowardly electorate. 

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Land of the slaves. What I hate most about America is the assertion that they are land of the free and the world leader in Democracy. No, it's a disgrace to Democracy when $$$ buys everything.

 

If there was 90% public support for a bill in a real democratic country in Europe it'd pass in a heartbeat. We can't expect the same standards with the United States, the disgrace that country brings to the word democracy. 

 

Next time I see a stars and strips flag, I will spit on it. Shameful country. Shameful. With an incompetent, cowardly electorate. 

 

Good Post and agree with all you say.

 

I often think democracy is an illusion in America. A land where a major party goes to all lengths in some areas to stop people voting if they think your not voting for them. Some that did vote, had to queue for 7 hours.

 

I feel a little sick every time i hear the line 'great country'. (Sorry to our American friends who view Villatalk. Just how i feel.)

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Land of the slaves. What I hate most about America is the assertion that they are land of the free and the world leader in Democracy. No, it's a disgrace to Democracy when $$$ buys everything.

 

If there was 90% public support for a bill in a real democratic country in Europe it'd pass in a heartbeat. We can't expect the same standards with the United States, the disgrace that country brings to the word democracy. 

 

Next time I see a stars and strips flag, I will spit on it. Shameful country. Shameful. With an incompetent, cowardly electorate. 

 

Bear in mind, spitting on our flag does absolutely no good for the 90% of us Americans who are also outraged about this.

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Next time I see a stars and strips flag, I will spit on it. Shameful country.

 

We have our warts just like any other country. Calm the f*ck down.

Edited by maqroll
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Next time I see a stars and strips flag, I will spit on it. Shameful country.

 

We have our warts just like any other country. Calm the f*ck down.

 

 

Agreed. But to reclaim the title of "Land of the Free" you should consider making it standard to have more than two weeks' holiday a year. Oh, and repeal the "Patriot" act.

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Land of the slaves. What I hate most about America is the assertion that they are land of the free and the world leader in Democracy. No, it's a disgrace to Democracy when $$$ buys everything.

If there was 90% public support for a bill in a real democratic country in Europe it'd pass in a heartbeat. We can't expect the same standards with the United States, the disgrace that country brings to the word democracy.

Next time I see a stars and strips flag, I will spit on it. Shameful country. Shameful. With an incompetent, cowardly electorate.

Sure. And if this gun legislation had 90% support, I am sure it would pass.

Shameful, shameful, pompous asshole does not even know the facts.

 

Now, back in the real world, the bill did not pass because the four democrats that did not vote for it are up for reelection in 2014 in red states.  They knew a vote for gun legislation is essentially a vote for a new senator.  That very much seems like the essence of a Republic.  Represent the values of the people you have been elected to represent.

 

Also humorous that you are mad at the US for calling ourselves the "Land of the Free" because we did not pass a bill that restricts the citizens' freedoms further.

 

Edited: Let's focus our anger on issues and ideas rather than on each other please. No more personal stuff.
Edited by OutByEaster?
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