Despite U.S. authorities determining that none of the 166 prisoners being kept at Guantanamo Bay pose a threat to Americans, Republican Congressman Mike Pompeo of Kansas insisted the prison should be kept open Sunday.
“The president talks about releasing these detainees but history shows clearly: 25% of the folks that have been released today have returned to the battlefield to wreak havoc against American interests to continue to battle for Islamic jihad,” Pompeo said in an interview with MSNBC’s Craig Melvin. “I don’t think it makes any sense, when you’ve got at least a quarter of the folks who you’re going to release come back and present a risk to Americans, to let anybody go who poses that kind of threat to America.”
Melvin played a video clip of Pardiss Kebriaei, a Senior Staff Attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights, who discussed the humanitarian crisis at Gitmo as more than 100 of the detainees have participated in a hunger strike where guards are force-feeding prisoners through nasal cavities.
Pompeo, who visited Guantanamo Bay last week, said that was not the case as he becomes visibly agitated after being confronted with facts.
“It is not a crisis mode,” he said Sunday. “We have prisoners down there that have chosen not to consume calories, have chosen not to take protein. We now have an obligation to try to take care of them. The last thing to say about these folks who are assertedly hunger strikers is that they look to me like a lot of them have put on weight.”
Great move by Craig Melvin, as he immediately asks him how he could possibly know if the detainees had put on weight unless he saw them before they started their hunger strike. After which Pompeo tries to change the subject in order to save face.
The congressman, who sits on the House Intelligence Committee, starts to refer to Craig Melvin as "Calvin," and blathers on about the detainees and the "great harm" they've done to America. Nearly the last minute of the video segment is just all down hill from there for Pompeo.