They loved him in January but soon enough it will be "Obama who?"
European countries that have offered to help the Obama administration close the detention center at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, have begun raising questions about the security risks and requirements if they accept prisoners described by the Bush administration as “the worst of the worst,” according to diplomats and other officials.
The concerns, and a deep suspicion of whether the American intelligence community will share full information on the prisoners, are likely to complicate the resettlement effort, which is critical to President Obama’s fulfilling his pledge to close Guantánamo within a year of his taking office.
The offers, from Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, Belgium, Switzerland and other countries, have been widely seen as efforts to win favor with the new administration by helping to close the camp, which was a contentious issue during the Bush years.
Still, with a first round of talks on the Guantánamo issues scheduled for Monday in Washington between Obama administration officials and a high-level delegation from the European Union, several European leaders have recently emphasized that they can make no firm commitments until they are given complete details on the prisoners.
Its early in the process so it ought to be easy to write this story, since some of the Euro-objections are reasonable, particularly their 'who are these guys' plaint. On the other hand, the Times could have provided a bit of uplift had they found some Euro-leader pounding the table and declaring their commitment to making this work.
We especially like this obstacle:
The Bush administration often failed when it asked other countries to accept detainees, partly because those requests were usually accompanied by public comments defending the imprisonments by describing the detainees as dangerous terrorists.
The new administration is sending a different message. “We are less vested in trying to prove that these people are rightly held,” the senior State Department official said.
Given that stance by the Obama administration, some European officials say Washington’s focus on sending the detainees to Europe raises many questions.
Let's see - if the prisoners are dangerous, Europe doesn't want them; if they are not dangerous, the US ought to keep or release them.
I bet these guys had a lot of fun with "Which came first, the chicken or the egg?" when they were kids.