A national shame

Guantánamo Prison must be closed right away

Guantánamo Prison is an inhumane nightmare for detainees and a national shame for the U.S. Indefinitely detaining people in a legal limbo is an action unworthy of a democracy that prides itself on respecting human rights.

There are currently 166 detainees, and almost 100 of them are in a hunger strike to protest against the way they are treated and how guards handled the Koran during a cell search back in February.

Today, 21 of them are being force-fed to prevent them from dying from hunger. At the same time, more doctors and nurses are arriving at the military base to feed those who continue to join the strike.

Guantánamo Prison is a bitter symbol of the misguided strategy of the war on terrorism; instead of combating terrorism, this prison has become a banner of American arrogance.

That is the only explanation for having 86 detainees who could have already returned to their country, Yemen, if it were not for Congress forbidding repatriation to countries that do not meet security conditions. Their detention has nothing to do with their guilt or dangerousness.

Terrorism is a real threat that can be fought with the force of the law. Our democracy does not need loopholes for torture or the inhumane treatment of suspects. Closing the prison is a legal and moral duty that cannot wait.