Tom Cotton threatens U.S. foreign policy with Guantanamo idea | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Tom Cotton threatens U.S. foreign policy with Guantanamo idea

Posted By on Thu, Feb 19, 2015 at 7:18 AM

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U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton is so committed to the continuance of Guantanamo detention that he's come up with an idea to cut foreign assistance to allies that accept former detainees.

Huffington Post reports:

Though newly minted Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) would ideally like to see the Guantanamo Bay detainees "rot in hell," he views the harsh conditions at the prison camp as an acceptable alternative. It now appears that he's so dedicated to keeping the remaining detainees there — regardless of whether they actually pose a threat to U.S. interests — that he's willing to torpedo the complex web of U.S. foreign relations to do it.

The Huffington Post has learned that Cotton last week suggested cutting U.S. assistance to any ally that helps resettle Guantanamo detainees whom the government has cleared for release. It was not clear whether such sanctions would also apply retroactively to countries that have already taken detainees.

In a closed-door Senate Armed Services Committee meeting about a new bill restricting the Obama administration's efforts to move prisoners out of Guantanamo, Cotton floated his idea as an amendment.

The amendment failed, but the bill was voted out of the Republican-controlled committee last week. The proposed legislation is a clear threat to the White House’s plan to shutter the prison — which the senior-most military official in the U.S. has blamed for a "psychological scar" on the nation — or so empty the facility that alternative confinement becomes more economical. 

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