Guantanamo Bay & Combating Terrorism

I am researching how the use of torture at Guantanamo Bay has impacted America’s ability to combat terrorism. My topic reveals how containment of individuals in an effort to lessen violence can actually exacerbate it, displayed by the idea that detention at Guantanamo fueled terrorist organizations.

Many scholars have debated the tactics used at Guantanamo Bay and the resulting impacts on the war on terror. Some historians, such as Gerard P. Fogarty, have explored the benefits of Guantanamo Bay, including how it has improved the security of the United States by allowing the government to better understand al Qaeda and its affiliates, which is critical to disrupting their attack plans. However, the majority of scholars have argued that unlawful detention has hurt America’s ability to combat terrorism. The use of torture has encouraged foreign extremists to join terrorist organizations because leaders of terrorist groups use Guantanamo Bay as a recruiting tool to justify hatred toward Americans. Additionally, many historians have suggested that Guantanamo Bay and other forms of detention has lead to increased domestic and international criticism of the United States. This makes it challenging for America to recruit Iraqi allies, weakening America’s ability to combat terrorism. Historians also discuss how unlawful responses to terrorism can worsen our military’s professionalism, integrity, and recruitment and can even reduce the government’s influence, authority, and power. In my RBA, I want to argue that Guantanamo Bay has fueled terrorist organizations. I would like to use Guantanamo Bay to show that when countries contain individuals in an effort to control violence, the effects of the containment can exacerbate the issue. In particular, when they are contained based on race, those individuals are more likely to resent those who capture them because of the discrimination.


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