For Immediate Release: October 27, 2010
New Video from Human Rights First Pushes Back
Washington, DC – Human Rights First today criticized Keep America Safe’s new mail campaign to mislead more than 800,000 voters in 17 congressional districts throughout the U.S., an effort the rights group calls a desperate attempt to replace facts about smart national security policy with partisan fearmongering.
According to a report published today by Politico, Liz Cheney’s Keep America Safe claims the 17 candidates all cast votes that “make Americans less safe.” Among the group’s chief criticisms are votes in favor of federal trials for terrorists and votes related to closing Guantanamo Bay.
“Liz Cheney doesn’t know what she’s talking about,” said Human Rights First’s Dixon Osburn. “The bottom line is that since 9-11, military commissions have convicted only five people and three of those convictions were plea bargains. Two of those men are already free. America’s federal courts have successfully convicted more than 400 terrorists, including the Times Square Bomber – who was sentenced to life in only 5 months. There is also widespread consensus among national security experts that the U.S. detention facility at Guantanamo is far more of a liability than a lifesaver. It’s time to stop playing politics with national security and let the facts speak for themselves.”
Human Rights First has released a series of videos to set the record straight on Cheney’s misrepresentation of national security facts. Today, the group announced that it will renew its push to distribute an advertisement making the case for trying KSM in federal court. Keep America Safe’s need to raise this issue in key congressional races is lamentable because – for the most part – candidates have chosen to keep this important conversation out of the political trenches this election season. That has been the findings of the organization and its group of more than 50 retired admirals and generals, who have traveled to targeted states throughout the summer speaking with candidates from all political parties about these very issues. Members of the group recently held a conference calldecrying efforts to politicize America’s national security.
“There are hundreds of terrorists convicted in federal courts who are serving time in U.S. federal prisons across the country. There has not been a single escape. That fact makes it hard to argue that Americans are less safe,” Osburn observed. “Even the American Correctional Association balks at the notion that jailing terrorists within the United States risks American lives. These mailings simply can’t compete with the facts.”
Human Rights First notes that beyond the safety and security of America’s federal prisons, these facilities are far more cost-effective than holding terrorists at Guantanamo, which costs taxpayers $150 million each year. That figure is double the cost of a comparable federal prison.
To view the video: http://www.youtube.com/user/HumanRightsFirstOrg?feature=mhum
To speak with Human Rights First about its work to promote facts, not fear, contact Brenda Bowser Soder at 202-370-3323 or firstname.lastname@example.org.