« Why aren't we part of the project? | Main | Del. Isechal: Philippine "Survivor" has taken use of Peleliu clinic facilities »

June 10, 2009

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Pretty much the US is using the Compact as their leverage over us. I mean if we didn't need their money this would not be even considered! I mean these guys were cought in Afganistan or Irag!!

Once these people indefinately detained by the U.S. in Cuba are brought to Palau, it will be extraordinarily difficult or impossible for Palau to send these people to any other country including these peoples' homelands which likely will not accept them if they are indeed terrorists or policial dissidents. This is exactly why Australia sent boat people to Nauru (after Australia around 2001 asked Palau and was declined) promising Nauru that the detainees would stay only 6 months or so in Nauru, and then Australia left them there for years and years with Nauru unable to get rid of them. Called the "Pacifric Solution" in Australia (see internet articles). This also is why an attorney (Bruce Jorgensen) raised this matter in the U.S. Court on Saipan in 1999-2000 and won in 2003 in 3 civil actions, forcing the U.S. and CNMI to create an asylum system there. And because of these lawsuits, the U.S. stopped bringing boat people to the CNMI on Tinian. Nestralda Mechaet (then married to Jorgensen) knows about this if you want more information/details. She lives in Palau/Ngaraard.

America ia using/duping Palau (as equivalent of Aussie's duping Nauru) in creating America's own version of Aussie's "Pacific Solution" for indefinately detained persons entitled to seek asylum?

Each and every one of these folks, once in Palau, will be entitled to seek political asylum and/or protection from torture in their homelands---at which time, merely upon the request being made, the Palau Government will be precluded by international law from subjecting the detained asylee/torture protection applicants to "non refoulement" (return to the asylees' country of origin) unless and until such time as full processing of their asylum applications is concluded. Which, as Palau has no such procedure, could mean years and years as was the case with the Aussie detainees in Nauru (some of whom remain in detention still today on Christmas Island)?

This of course brings to mind for reflection the U.S. decision circa 1998-99 to divert so-called Chinese "boat people" from Guam to Tinian. For processing by U.S. INS/related personnel for political asylum w/release to the U.S. which ceased when it was publicly revealed that this, in turn, opened the door for all CNMI situated non-resident workers to also seek and apply for political asylum/torture protections and thereby be precluded from deportation by the CNMI government unless/until an asylum/torture protection system was implemented in accordance with U.S. and international laws and treaty obligations.

ONCE THIS CAN OF WORMS IS OPENED IN PALAU ON PALAU SOIL WELL THEN ALL PALAU SITUATED NONRESIDENT WORKERS FROM PLACES LIKE MAINLAND CHINA OR SRI LANKA OR TOTATALITARIAN GOVERNMENTS CAN JUST APPLY FOR ASYLUM OR TORTURE PROTECTION IN PALAU---AND, THEN, PALAU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO SENT THEM HOME BUT THEY CAN STAY INDEFINATELY IN PALAU.

DON'T OPEN THIS CAN OF WORMS IN PALAU.

This is not a good idea! How much are we benefitting from it? Are we turning Palau in to another Gitmo'prison island? If the rest of the world doesn't want them why Palau?

WHAT IN THE HELL ARE THEY THINKING? I KNOW MONEY IS A KEY PLAYER IN THIS BUT WHAT YOU ARE GOING TO DO WITH THEM. BRING THEM DOWN TO PALAU WE WILL HAVE OUR WAY OF QUESTIONING THEM. NOT WATERBOARDING BUT OUR SECRET CALLED "MASIL"

is this man out of his freakin mind. You have to be the dumbest man to allow this to happen. even the people in the states don't want them. what happens when their counterpart comes and decide to come for their rescue, who's gonna defend our sorry asses. remember this people are not ordinary criminals their bigger than the freakin maffia or the triads.I've always and will always be patritic but if this "TOOL" mr. toribiong decides to do this maybe he needs to shoot himself in the head. I've been in the the army for a while and i've been face to face w/ these kind of people, they will not hesitate a bit to take someone life.

What a boot licking move! Off course it's a suck up for a favorable compact review. We need money, so never mind putting our people in harms way and creating new enemies around the world.

We need to face the inevitable and that is, we cannot sustain our current way of governance. Who has the courage to take the knife and trim the fat. I suspect we will continue to beg until we are forced to do this.

It's called 'Diplomacy'- a relationship of two countries where one do all the ASS kissing.... take a wild guess who is doing all the kissing, and i can tell you all it's not U.S of A.
May be this will pave our way for fast internet and may be some money to fund our coconut government that cannot pay its own bills.

This is TREASON! Fellow Palauans, are we going to sit and do nothing? Words cannot express my heart's sadness. I will cry out bloody tears if the detainees are brought here. How long is "for a little while"? This is the beginning of the dead to our culture.

Dear fellow Palauans,

Thank President Toribiong for showing the same sensibility and compassion as President Obama in recognizing the fact that even detainees and terrorists have human rights too. Just because we have to deal with terrorism and crime does not mean we must fight fire with fire! We are deemed infidels but we must show the muslims that these infidels have compassion and therefore are lesser infidels than the terrorists themselves. What a moral and psychological blow for the muslim fundamentalists Obama and Toribiong have dealt! Hip Hip Hooray!

However, on the surface it would seem to me that these detainees are about to be sent somewhere that has no ability to exercise the kind of rigorous security required to house dangerous Criminals/Terrorists. After all P.Moron was able to order pizza's for the extorting inmates threatening Moron's life while he was in there. There have been cases where Palauan prisoners disappear without a trace and/or have too much of an easy time in our jails as they are let out for basketball practice, etc. On this front, I must protest that any ex-Guantanamo Bay detainee be sent to Palau on the same grounds of those who are protesting herein above.

However, I have full faith in my leader (President Toribiong) and the leadership of USA on which we depend so much for funding (and whose grants have developed Palau). I am sure that since USA funded most of developments I am sure that President Obama and President Toribiong know full well the rate and quality of our prison system such that only the misdemeanors of terrorists will be sent to us in Palau.

DONT BLAME PRESIDENT TORIBIONG, if the TR Administration had listened to Lord Morris, Palau would not be in this position now, the PSB would be still operating, Pensioners funds intact and we would not have to bend-over for USA like this.

Squawk Sulang Squawk Sulang Sulang Squawk Squawk.

I don’t like the idea. However, this could mean a military base in Palau. I don’t like the military base either, but I guess it’s better than some other unknown foreign investors. Military base means better economy and security for our island.

This is how USA does things. They for see 20 yrs from now while we, (Palauans) only see next year. I wonder what part of Palau will be the ideal place for this detention compound.


Sulang,


Honto-Style


“What they will encounter in Palau is paradise,” said Stuart Beck, an American lawyer who is Palau’s permanent United Nations representative. “From the time the first British vessel hit a reef in Palau in 1783, it has welcomed refugees.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/10/world/10palau.html?_r=1&hp

nice. i wish i could get resettled in Palau.

honto style.......you like military base??? now then, i'll be your PIMP DADDY 'cos once the military base is established then all them HO'S, prostitutes, skanks or what have you will come out of the woodwork and will need managment...if i don't do it somebody else will. be careful of what you wish for HONTO.

I was initially very skeptical as well. However in reading the article printed in Guam PDN, it's all about the money and not good will towards "Palau's best friend...".

$200,000,000!! Now do you think it's worth it?

http://www.guampdn.com/article/20090610/NEWS01/90610004/9+55+a.m.+—+Guantanamo+Bay+detainees+may+be+headed+for+Palau

Barack Obama is "playing chess while everyone else is playing checkers" is how one of the talking-heads put it. i guess he has found a good match in JT. kudos!!! a win win for every one.

check out the headline on the acclaimed "HUFFINGTONPOST.COM", OH boy.....

hmmm...
would of thought that if the US wanted to build a military base here, they wouldn't need Uighurs as a catalyst to do so...Compact anyone...lol
kede chebuul...


It used to be that leaders use religion to placate the masses, now its money... the new opiate of the masses.

Either put up or shut up I guess. Where the hell does our President get off doing this without consulting with the communities and the people.

This is the best JT can do...sell Palau at every opportunity he gets. WTF. What a downer.

You will see Palau LOSING its status as a vacation destination for sure. Fucken idiots. Build hotels and put Chinese Muslim Dissidents in there for 200Million.....?

THis is only the beginning of the ultimate downfall of our country because of stupid policies.

I say, what tourist wants to come to Palau...the next GITMO...Why don't we invite the damn Abu Sayef who are just a boat ride away.

At the very least, this should be explained to the people and get the people's acceptance. This is not a country that belongs to one person/president/whatever.

Here goes Mardingaol again. I thought this guy crawled under a rock and perished. Just read how backward his thoughts are.

Hey, this is Palau's best way of returning a favor to its closest friend, the USA. Mardingaol forgot that US marines liberated Palau in 1945, fed the hungry natives, clothed the naked and gave independence to Palau in 1994. The compact funding has kept Palau from becoming another failed state.

Now Mardingaol is preaching the gospel of hate.

I think this was a great move on palau's side to show that a friend must stand next to a friend in time of need. And the US, with is military and financial prowess, will help Palau in its hour of desperation, all the way to the end.

Good move Toribiong. You have foresight. US will reciprocate your generosity and friendship oneday.


Local Fu&*:
We returned the favor to the US by having our sons die for the US.

Go suck on your ego fuckhead...your not even Palauan and you will never know how it is to lose a loved one fighting in a war for a foreign land that his grandparents haven't even set foot on.

Now, the $200M welfare money is just that. It will allow the good 'ol boy network to rise up and screw us over with the handout mentality. What a solution JT.

Keep selling.

How about finding out a little about what Uighur are before saying all this ignorant B.S. These detainees are classified as not being enemy combatants, they infact are now looking for a place to be relocated because no one will take them. Not only have they been found innocent by the courts, they have been detained for over 5 years despite the fact. Not because they are Al-Qaeda, but because if they return to China, they will most likely be put to death, and we all know how no-one wants to get on China's bad side now. And Palau is Pro Taiwan, so there we go.

So High Chief Reklai, High Chief Ibedul, and those the President consulted with all know this. Have some faith in your leaders for God's sake. Techa kongei el melai rar Al-Qaeda el mer tial beluu? Tirka diak el mekebelung.

E omsal bekikl ra Asylum slippery slope, em telkib el soro. I'm sure there's gonna be a law that pertains only to these specific foreign nationals, adressing the asylum issue. Just like the naturalization bill proposed last year.

Just cut out drama. THESE guys are not Al-Quaeda.

Jaks,
Can you give them the directions to your house? They're on their way.

I wouldn't want them in my backyard. I am not yet sure what I think of this proposal but am more than willing to assist Palau if asked. I think everyone should take a long, serious look at the implications of this move. Not something to rush into. Many in the media are misrepresenting Palau and it is unfortunate. Let me know if I can help here in Washington, DC. Best regards to all in Palau.

Honto Style,

There is a forward U.S. Military base in Belau called Camp Katuu and U.S. Embassy already.

Are these Uighurs terrorist or Asylum seekers/refugees?

In the meantime Clarence et.al. were just here recruiting Palaun kids/mercenaries to fight for U.S' wars and you guys are crying!!!

Oil.. What for? I said they were detainees proven innocent without anywhere to go, not guests for dinner and convesation. Bo bii aikang.

Palau is absolutely being missrepresented, ignorance is to blame.

Also the Americans Liberated Palauans? The Japanese liberated the Palauans from all the diseases and exploitation from the Europeans. They gave us a working economy and an infrastructure. Within 50 years Palauans would've been a neo styled pacific culture. What did we get after the U.S bombed our island? A dependence on Foreign Aid and Canned Food.

relax. there are only up to 17 chinese nationals - and guam is less than 2 hours away so if they become out of control the military can fly the national guards to palau right away. these guys are not risky without their weapons - and no guns in palau for them. unless they borrow TR's gun.

It is not coincidence or a surprise that US will give these detainees to us. After JT met Hillary, they knew that we need money and what's the better way to get rid some of detainees,give them to us. These People never proven guilty and they can not release them to US soil,so in order to get rid of them is to detain them elsewhere.So, is it money? Ask those families who lost there sons to these wars and see how they feel about.There the one who made sacrifice.Did JT thinks this through or did he just see many 0's after 2 and forget about the rest.Long term people, we got to start looking ahead instead of now.

Bukitang,
Go back and re-read what my comments. Well, if you can’t comprehend then that is sad.
There was no line in my comments suggesting that I wish for something like this to happen in Honto, nor did I prefer military base. As I recall, I did say:

“I don’t like the idea. However, this could mean a military base in Palau. I don’t like the military base either, but I guess it’s better than some other unknown foreign investors. Military base means better economy and security for our island.
This is how USA does things. They for see 20 yrs from now while we, (Palauans) only see next year. I wonder what part of Palau will be the ideal place for this detention compound.”
Now tell me which part of my comments encouraging detainees and or military base in Palau? Please read and try to understand before you jump into conclusion. This is our weakness.
Let me be clear just incase: “I DON’T LIKE THE IDEA.”
All I did was trying to make the best of it and nothing more. Okay?
Sulang.

Uchel,
For your information, the so called “military base” in Palau is not even close to one and that’s why they called it “Camp Katuu.” It is a permanent camp site. In the near future you’ll see and experience the real military base in Palau. Don’t get me wrong! I don’t like the idea either, but I’m trying to see the bright side of it, that’s all.
Sulang

I for one am intriqued by this. Lets consider this for a minute. We can ask the military to construct a secure compound near camp Katuu to house em'. We can also demand that they provide all the related costs to it. This is maybe the only time the U.S. is desperately looking for help from us so let's milk it for all we can.

This will at least provide some needed jobs for guarding,cooking etc..... These people have been found not guilty and ordered release by the US courts. They're certainly not the hardcore terrorists we keep hearing about in the news. We can use em' for free labor and if the Chinese wants them? We can get turn em' over after a couple of years and get some money for it.

I do agree with Mardingaol, the 200 million dollars will inspire our leaders to do what they've done over the years so we can only hope and pray that JT is better and will show some needed restraint.

I respect those who don't wanna have anything to do with these people but its better than some hotel "investment" from a chinese firm in babeldaob.


Okemii

Iang hai e rengelekei! Mereko bomrei. A babii a okelall ma blatong a telbongel.

you stupid Palauan puppets!

Ng meral chebuul ar mechuodel el ulmekerreu e omcheliu ra beluad el kired e kid a di meterkakl er ngii. Lak de dengerngerii a delad el Belau...adang. Bo de dak ede bekodir tial tekoi e tia mo uchul a chelbuul el mer kid a rengelkel Belau ma delad el Belau.

Do we really want to piss off China? Serioiusly?! Some countries are afraid to take in detainees as they do not want to mess with China. So Palau, are you seriously going to mess with China? Please be very afraid! U.S. does not care if China blows us up. Of course they will try to protect us as it is one of the terms in the Compact, but come on... seriously? This is JT signing off our lives to the U.S. of A. Check out this video on youtube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jNsuf2kRm2E

And please..."honored and proud" to take in the detainees? Are you kidding!!! And who are these 17 detainees? Do we honestly believe what U.S. says about these people? Because if we do believe in U.S. then we are so doomed. US has a long history filled with lies and more lies...so come on people.

Anyway, does anyone here know if there's a group in resistance against this agreement with U.S. el ngar Belau?

Thanks.

I recently came to the mainland U.S. last year. I met an one American and he asked me where I come from. I told him that I come from the Republic of Palau. He had a smirk on his face and he asked me, "oh, do we own you?" I was so mad and I stood up and told him that we were an independent country and I tried not to mention that we depend on U.S. financially. Fortunately, he did not know about that so I was able to keep my Palauan pride intact. However, now that our President just said that we are "honored and proud" to take in detainees, I think the whole world now knows that U.S. owns us. I can no longer hold my head up high as a Palauan because the world knows who we are to the U.S. (Palau the prostitute, U.S. the pimp). The whole world can see this whole situation is ludicrous... however, ignorance has clouded our minds, my dear Palauans. We are the fools to allow this to happen. It's embarassing to hold our heads up high now for the whole world knows that we are cowards. What honor is there in taking in someone's trash?!?! Bo bii aikang e sechelei!

hey..HONTO, do you even understand the shit coming out of your mouth??? re-read your statement and you're strocking the idea of having military base in Belau, it's either yes or no, not may be so. with that said,...one more time, be weeeeel careful of what you wish for.

ReNgelkelBelau,

lako medakt e bolmeklou a rengud.

alsekum kerdi medakt, eng uai a blabo de mechitechut ra terrorist. tiakid el dekted a lousbech er ngii tirkal terrorist loumekemad el kuk klou a klisichel ra atomic bomb.

tiang a bai techelled el me tuobed e ochotid ra beluulchad, el kmo kid a di kekerei el beluu eng di meklou a rengud, e tmolech a uldesued el sebeched lomes lengelakl ra dekted ma rraureng er kid e odars a chimad el ngosuir a kot el klou e mesisiich el beluu ra beluulchad. altang tial lungil lomerelled el mortirkal chad a sebechel remuul a bebil ra beluu el me tuobed e rullii a osisiu el ungil teletael e ngosuir a beluu ra merikel.

tiang a dirrek el klou a belkul el mera beluad leng betok el dimlak lodengelii a beluad a mla mo medengelkid. tial chais a ngara internet ma beluulchad a mengui e mesaod er ngii. ng locha kuk klou a blal rellii lolecholt ra beluad el mora beluulchad ra urerel a PVA ma udoud el longoit er ngii.

e dirrek el betok a redelad el mla melak ma di mesobil lousbech ra rubak, maltang ng sebechel morngii a techall. ;-}

sulang,

buik ra beluu

You best expect that there will be stricter screening on us when we enter Guam. Imagine all the questions and papers that we have to provide making us look like a fool while the long line is waiting. They will treat us like a foreigner from china and other asian countries. OR BEST A TERRORIST.
Guam and CNMI are already giving negative remark on this action. What damage will it do to the tourism???

Good luck Palau.

jaime,

ng mla mo diak a babii. ng kel babii el bertha a ngklel a mlo odimel tial blengur er tirkal detainees...kora kmal klou a temem, meke bai mei meke melib a blatong e meruul a kelir tirkal detainees ea US Of A a omdoud er kau. adang?...:)

670

What are you talking about getting stricter? There are guidelines in the compact set up for us when we enter USA, if you did not know. Unless they make changes to the compact then we are screwed! Guam and CNMI can not just change immigration laws cause of alleged 17 terrorist detained in Palau!! They can complain all the want but we have the right to go to US whenever we want!!

Not saying I like this idea but just saying get your facts straight before you come out blasting away!!

For president to just say the detainees will roam free among the people is a little dangerous.

Remember, these people came from bigger places than Palau. Do not underestimate them. If China wants their return for execution why would we let them free to roam in Palau when we do not have a plan or the training to deal with terrorism.

The money is good. It might just help our ailing economy and maybe the minimum wage can go up at least $3.00 or $3.50. Let's not be quick to say they will be free in Palau but study it more closely. That is all I am asking.

No more tourism coming to Palau.

Iang hai a mengerenger...Lakem uaisei ekau. Kede kora di omais e omes aikal melaok el chais ra beluu. Bong e mei me donga aiskater ma abrabang. Adang mekerang? Me bol uaisei. Ochoi. Seikid. Ma uriul.

Buki, buki,

Poor guy! No wonder we are running around the circle as a nation because we all know it all, pretend we are smart when we can’t even comprehend simple English or at least ask further before jumping into conclusion. Sorry if you’re stock with your own conclusion.

Elbuul a ngara beluu…

A’l kerong di kid!! LOL


Honto-Style

OOOOOO.....my god....

.....WOW......WOW.....

um, are we detaining them? or are they...ahem..."settling" here....

um, I could express my thoughts and opinions in a sensible rational way that effectively projects my perspective....

but theres no point... capital W. T. F. man... W.T.F.

Screw JT. Yeah money, Yay.... once upon a time we used to be our own country where money meant a whole lot less than the fish in our water.

now everything will mean a whole lot less with the world's criminals chilling in our backyards...

now, what in the hell could we do in case of a prison break.... I mean seriously? lets say.... these gitmo boys call up their homies up in china who are still battling for this "Eastern Turkish Empire"... and they decide to raid our tiny ass island or help free the gitmo boys... what then? I mean yeah... okay guams next door... but they arent actually here and um Palau is no Cuba... There is a reason they put Gitmo on Cuba... and JT is sure as hell no Fidel Castro.

I mean, what is our highest most formidable piece of weaponry? a piece of junk revolver thats never used on a cop, can of mace, pepper spray, an army of machete bearing farmers, fishing gaf... baseball bats and 2x4... local choice of weaponry... and spearguns and airpowered pellet guns.

nice. good work JT........(pause).... NOT!

A don't know about you guys, but I think JT made a very wise decision.....

It's like he killed three birds with one stone...

First and formost he did not just agree to this if he felt that the safety of the citizens were at risk. I mean 17 detaines? Come on people I think we can handle that for $200 million. Secondly the Humanitarian side of it carries a lot of weight which is a blessing to us all.
Palau would at least have a chance to step up to the plate and show that commitment towards an already strong bond between us and the United States. I think it's a win win situation for all.

Kudos to you Mr.President,


Mesulang,

We have 17 detainees just for now to open the door...later it will be more then 17 and Palau will be the place for detainees....smart ha, keep other Micronesian and pick Belau..
Did johnson Toribion call public meeting for this? so that he can hear some concern from citizens.

Mosi,
I agree. Plus, be real. Palauans know what visitors are doing before they even do it. Too tight of community to let anything get out of hand. These detainees were determined in court that they should be set free 4 years ago. Politicians are just cowards won't get reelected, even tho community in US said they would take them.
JT only agreed, as reported, to 'temporary' stay. This provides additional leverage for Palau in the future to future terms. A pretty shrewd political/economical move by the administration, in my opinion.

If JT does and will succeed on this never mind the 17 detainees from Cuba. Instead, better mind all of the non-resident workers and peoples in Palau. Cause if Palau let Cuba detainees from China stay here getting asylum and being protected from torture if the Chinese forced by Palau to return to China then what next?

here what next! Every one of the Mainland China or Filipino non-residents in Palau will next be able to stop Palau from sending these non-resident-peoples home also. Because they can say Palau You Must Treat Us By Same Law Prevents You From Sending Home The Other 17 From Cuba.

And so Palau if the stupids let in this 17 well then Palau will have BIG problems deporting or sending home the hundreds or mores of the Mainland China or Filipinos in Palau who don't want to go home and who if faceing deportations in Palu can just say Oh Gee If Palau Send Me Home To China I Will Face Torture Cause I'm Muslim Or Anti-China-Politics!

Stupid for to let in this 17 alone. And more stupid for what next can and probably will come when Muslim Filipino or Muslim Mainland China peoples don't want to leave Palau and Palau under international law is stuck with alls of them not just the 17 now!

Palau agrees to accept Uighur detainees from Guantanamo
BY GRACE CHUNG
MCCLATCHY NEWSPAPERS
WASHINGTON -- To the relief of the Obama administration, the South Pacific island nation of Palau agreed Wednesday to take the 17 Muslim Uighurs from China who are still being held at the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba, the first major release of detainees since President Barack Obama announced his plan to close the prison by next January.

The State Department expressed gratitude for the offer, but it said the details haven't been settled. Spokesman Ian Kelly also confirmed the U.S. and Palau, which is home to about 21,000 people, are discussing a $200 million U.S. aid package for the next several years, but he said there was no connection between the two discussions.

The administration has sent a special envoy around the world in search of a new home for the Uighurs. The Bush administration determined four years ago the Uighurs aren't a threat to the U.S., but was reluctant to turn them over to China, which labeled them terrorists leading an Islamic separatist movement.

Germany turned down a U.S. request last week, and Australia was still considering a new request when the president of Palau issued a statement yesterday. Conservative Republicans, led by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, have campaigned against resettling the Uighurs in the U.S., but until now, no other country would accept them.

On Capitol Hill Wednesday, both Democrats and Republicans criticized the Bush administration for seizing them in Afghanistan after paying bounties to local officials who turned them in, treating them as terrorists at Guantanamo - and permitting the Chinese government to interrogate them at the prison.

Rep. William Delahunt, D-Mass., the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Oversight Subcommittee, said at a hearing the Uighurs "are a peace loving people who seek only civil rights."

In rare bipartisan agreement, the panel's ranking Republican, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., added he was disturbed fellow Republicans didn't also defend innocent Uighur detainees.

He was referring to Gingrich, who said in May the Uighurs were "trained mass killers instructed by the same terrorists responsible for killing 3,000 Americans on September 11, 2001." He said their goal was to "establish a separate Sharia state," based on Islamic law.

Rohrabacher, a staunch conservative, said: "I always and still support Guantanamo as a prison for terrorists . . . but Uighurs are not enemy combatants. It is unfortunate that other members of my party have not been so principled."

Unlike most of the detainees held at Guantanamo, these men weren't picked up on the battlefield, he said. They were turned over to the U.S. in 2001 by bounty hunters in Pakistan. Rohrabacher, who had been a speechwriter for President Ronald Reagan, said the source of evidence against the Uighurs "was the Communist Chinese."

Delahunt said China's attitude about the Uighurs - as members of a terrorist organization affiliated with al-Qaida - was the reason it was so difficult to find another country to accept them.

"Until today's announcement, finding a suitable venue to resettle the Uighurs was extremely difficult because nations were profoundly concerned about the reaction of the Communist Chinese."

Both congressmen asked to interview the detainees, but their requests were rebuffed. They were shocked to learn a Chinese delegation had been permitted access.

"The Chinese communists were allowed access not only to interrogate but to intimidate the Chinese," Delahunt testified.

The Pentagon didn't dispute Delahunt.

"All foreign visits with detainees are supervised, and our policy is and always has been, for humane treatment," said J.D. Gordon, a Pentagon spokesman.

The Uighur people are a predominantly Muslim minority concentrated in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region in western China. The Communist party took control of resource-rich Xinjiang in 1949. Since then, it has been the scene of ethnic and political tension.

"The Uighur people are opposed to terrorism and violence because we ourselves are victims of terrorism," testified Rebiya Kadeer, the president of the World Uighur Congress and the American Uighur Association. "The Chinese government has used our Islamic faith against us and labeled Uighurs terrorists to justify crackdowns and security sweeps as part of the war on terror."

Kadeer was imprisoned in China for six years and exiled in 2005 for her efforts to draw attention to the Uighur plight.

"Chinese restrictions on peaceful religious activity and expression in Xinjiang are particularly egregious and draconian in scope," observed Felice Gaer, the chairwoman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.


Well said Mosi,

For once I agree with you 100%! This is a win win and win situation for Palau!

Kudos to you Mr. President. My faith in you proves 1000% correct!

The comments to this entry are closed.

Twitter Updates

    follow me on Twitter

    October 2009

    Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
            1 2 3
    4 5 6 7 8 9 10
    11 12 13 14 15 16 17
    18 19 20 21 22 23 24
    25 26 27 28 29 30 31