How will the prison system handle Guantanamo Bay prisoners?

In a letter to the editor in last Saturday’s Washington Post, Colbert I. King raises an interesting point.

The writer tells the story about a D.C. native, Keith Barnes. Mr. Barnes was murdered in a Federal Prison in 2005. Barnes had plead guilty in 1998 to second degree murder and consipracy to commit armed robbery.

Barnes agreed to cooperate with the authorities to help convict his three co-defendants. As a reult of his cooperation, two of the others were convicted to 50 years and 54 years to life, respectively. D.C. inmates incarcerated in Federal Prisons where Barnes later served time, discovered his location and stabbed him 106 times.

Apparently in each prison, the authorities were alerted as to his identity and were under orders to keep other inmates away from him. He himself knew of the danger and wrote letters from inside prison. The question now remains; if the Federal Prison authorities could not keep an inmate safe from D.C. inmates who had ordered a “hit” wherever Barnes went, how are they going to control a bunch of battle hardened Al Qaeda insurgents?

FBI Director Robert Mueller is not taking the matter too lightly. He has warned that even if they are sent to maximum-security Federal Prisons, Gitmo inmates may radicalize other prisoners and threaten National Security.

With so much at stake, let us hope that the politicians do the right thing. Some might think that they could do worse than send them into the desert in Arizona and let them watch the weather channel in pink underwear all day.

Come to think of it, what is wrong with that as a solution for all prisoners?

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