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EJ Kimball and Benjamin Lerner, May 28 2009, “Keep Gitmo Going: the case for retaining the vital detention andinterrogation facility at Guantanamo Bay”, Center for Security Policy Occasional Paper

Transferring detainees to facilities inside the United States would also pose a direct threat to thesafety of the American public. Any facility holding al- Qaeda detainees would immediately become a terrorist target. Reports have indicated that the Pentagon is investigating threespecific facilities in which to house these detainees: Fort Leavenworth in Kansas, the Navy Brig in North Charleston, South Carolina, and Camp Pendleton in California.15 It wouldappear, however, that Fort Leavenworth may be a non-starter – then-Governor of Kansas, Kathleen Sebelius, along with the State Legislature, recently objected strongly to any transfer ofGuantánamo detainees to Fort Leavenworth.
Even if a location were found within the United States in which to house detainees, significant issues would remain to be addressed. Accordingto Charles Stimson, former Deputy Assistant Defense Secretary for Detainee Affairs, “You can’t commingle them [Guantánamo detainees] with military detainees, so you’d have to set upa separate wing or clear out the facility…[a]nd you would have to address secondary and tertiary [security] concerns within the town, the county and the state” to protect from theincreased risk of terrorist attack.17 Indeed, the Guantánamo Bay Detention Facility was chosen because it served as the safest location at which to house the detainees. The facility issecure from enemy attack and provides the least risk to American citizens in that it keeps the detainees and those who would try to free them far away from major populated areas.
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