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Bush-era officials warn against keeping Gitmo open

Activists protest the continued operation of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp in front of the White House.
Activists protest the continued operation of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp in front of the White House. Photo: Win McNamee / Getty Images

Bush-era U.S. officials and military attorneys are warning against keeping the Guantánamo detention center open, saying it could waste billions of dollars, according to the Guardian.

"We've invested roughly $6.5 [billion] on detention in Guantánamo and what has it gotten us? We wasted our money....We have over a thousand troops...that could be used elsewhere. We have squandered our credibility around the world in these trials."
— Retired Colonel and former chief prosecutor Morris Davis told the Guardian

Why it matters: In President Trump's State of the Union address, he announced an executive order to keep the doors open at Gitmo, and suggested more prisoners would be added. But a former legal adviser to President Bush, John Bellinger, told the Guardian he believes that move is "more of a political bone thrown to his conservative base than any indication he will change policy."