Obama has gotten a relatively free pass as president, no doubt due to the intrigue of being the first black president. Congressional investigations into his administration go nowhere. The liberal media minimizes any wrongdoing by the administration and finds a way to spin it against Republicans instead. But something unusual has started happening. Influential figures on the left are speaking up loudly and attacking Obama over his policies regarding the U.S. military and defense. Obama is accused of being worse than former President George W. Bush due to the way he is continuing to detain Guantanamo inmates.
Obama originally said when he ran for office that he would close the Guantanamo Bay prison, and after being elected in 2009, publicly instructed the military to shut it down within one year. It is now over four years later, into his second term, and the prison is still open. Most of the prisoners have been there for over 11 years without a trial. Nine have died since it opened in 2002. The scrutiny has intensified in recent months as a majority of the 166 inmates, down from a high of 684 in 2003, have gone on hunger strikes, and at least 21 of the men are being force-fed twice daily. The administration has approved 86 detainees for release, but curiously none have been released so far this year.
Obama recently closed the office of the Special Envoy to the Closure of Guantánamo, evidence that it is becoming even less likely that it will be shut down. Polls reveal that a whopping 70 percent of Americans approve of Obama keeping the Guantanamo Bay prison open, giving Obama less incentive to shut it down. Many of the detainees are from Yemen, and cannot be released there, because the administration imposed a ban on transfers to Yemen in 2009 after the Underwear Bomber attack.
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