Obama Administration Closes Office in Charge of Closing Gitmo


The State Depart­ment on Mon­day reas­signed Daniel Fried, the spe­cial envoy for clos­ing the prison at Guan­tá­namo Bay, Cuba, and will not replace him, accord­ing to an inter­nal per­son­nel announce­ment. Mr. Fried’s office is being closed, and his for­mer respon­si­bil­i­ties will be “assumed” by the office of the department’s legal adviser, the notice said.

The announce­ment that no senior offi­cial in Pres­i­dent Obama’s sec­ond term will suc­ceed Mr. Fried in work­ing pri­mar­ily on diplo­matic issues per­tain­ing to repa­tri­at­ing or reset­tling detainees appeared to sig­nal that the admin­is­tra­tion does not cur­rently see the clos­ing of the prison as a real­is­tic pri­or­ity, despite repeated state­ments that it still intends to do so.

Mr. Fried will become the department’s coor­di­na­tor for sanc­tions pol­icy and will work on issues includ­ing Iran and Syria.

The announce­ment came as Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and four other Guan­tá­namo Bay detainees fac­ing death penalty charges before a mil­i­tary tri­bunal over the Sept. 11 attacks made their first pub­lic appear­ance since Octo­ber on Mon­day, sit­ting qui­etly in a high-security court­room at the naval base in Cuba as pre­trial hear­ings resumed. A closed-circuit feed of the pro­ceed­ings was shown at Fort Meade.

When asked about the office clos­ing at yesterday’s White House brief­ing, spokes-hack Jay Car­ney said that Pres­i­dent Obama ‘remains com­mit­ted’ to clos­ing Gitmo by the end of his term.  Funny, he said that four years ago too.

(Won­der if the Left has got­ten in on the joke that he’s likely never going to yet?)

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