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Human Rights First Responds to President Obama's National Security Speech
WASHINGTON - May 21 - Today, Human Rights First's Chief Executive Office Elisa Massimino responded to President Obama's national security speech, stating:
"Today, the President rightly recognized that our values are our best national security asset; however, his specific proposals undermine the vision he presented. If the President really wants to ‘enlist the power of our fundamental values' he will turn to our federal courts and away from the flawed military commissions system, and he will abandon the misguided plans for indefinite detention of individuals without trial. By continuing to treat these prisoners as warriors, President Obama misses the opportunity to delegitimize them and shift the focus from our flawed procedures to their own heinous conduct.
"The decision yesterday to send a Guantanamo detainee to the United States to stand trial was a step toward rebuilding trust in our institutions. If repeated, this demonstration of confidence in our federal courts will make our country more secure."