Another day, another outlandish Trump lie. This time compounded by White House Press Secretary Spicer piling it on with additional lies.
On Monday, President Donald Trump tweeted: “122 vicious prisoners, released by the Obama Administration from Gitmo, have returned to the battlefield. Just another terrible decision!”
In fact, the overwhelming majority of those men were actually released under President George W. Bush, not by Barack Obama. Only eight or nine of those “confirmed” to be engaged in terrorist activities transferred out under President Barack Obama, according to recent intelligence reports.
Spicer then defended Bush by telling reporters, “Just to be clear: There’s a big difference: under the Bush administration, most of those were court-ordered.”
But Spicer’s assertion that “most” or “many” of the Bush-era releases were court-ordered is a lie, according to lawyers involved in such cases and to Obama administration officials.
“That’s loony. …That’s just flat-out not true,” said Sabin Willett, a prominent lawyer for Guantanamo detainees. “You can count on one hand, and not even use all your fingers, the number of people a district court ordered released where that was not reversed on appeal.”
In fact, no more than three of the 532 Guantanamo detainees transferred out under Bush were moved because they won a court challenge, legal experts said.
“The truth is that Sean Spicer doesn’t know what he is talking about and doesn’t care enough to take the time to find out,” said former Obama White House Counsel Greg Craig, who was deeply involved in Obama’s early Guantanamo policy.
And Trump tweets on.