Following a recent report that the Biden administration planned on vaccinating detainees at Guantanamo Bay before millions of Americans caused outrage, the Pentagon has announced the plan has been “paused.”
“No Guantanamo detainees have been vaccinated,” Defense Department Press Secretary John Kirby tweeted on Saturday. “We’re pausing the plan to move forward, as we review force protection protocols. We remain committed to our obligations to keep our troops safe.”
No Guantanamo detainees have been vaccinated. We’re pausing the plan to move forward, as we review force protection protocols. We remain committed to our obligations to keep our troops safe.
— John Kirby (@PentagonPresSec) January 30, 2021
The original plan was reportedly put in motion due to a lack of vaccinations holding up prosecutors being able to move forward with cases against detainees.
Among those detained at Guantanamo Bay is Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who is accused of masterminding the 9/11 terror attacks. There have been no reports as to whether any detainees have tested positive for Covid-19, but medical workers at staff at the facility began receiving vaccinations earlier in January.
The plan to vaccinate inmates at the detention facility near Cuba was signed by Terry Adirim, the principal deputy assistant secretary of defense for health affairs, this week, but quickly received pushback after reports of the plan caught the media’s attention.
“Outrageous. The Biden Administration is giving vaccines to terrorists at Guantanamo Bay. What do they say to American seniors and veterans still waiting for theirs?” Rep. Steve Scalise (R-Louisiana) tweeted on Saturday before the “pause” announcement.
“Terrorists First was his big vaccine plan apparently. The new administration has a plan and as we warned you it’s America Last,” Donald Trump Jr. added.
Numerous other Republicans criticized the plan, arguing first responders, veterans, and numerous others should be vaccinated before accused terrorists.
My Dad is an 80 year old retired Marine/NYPD and he can’t get one yet, but don’t worry, @POTUS made sure the guy who helped knock down the Twin Towers and his terrorist buddies can.Alleged 9/11 mastermind, Gitmo detainees to start getting COVID vaccines https://t.co/jNvNwtQJO4
— Doug Stafford (@dougstafford) January 30, 2021
There had been more support for the plan from those more supportive of Biden and the Democrat Party, with some directly pushing back against conservatives that had been triggered by it. They argued the vaccinations would help protect workers at the facility and speed up the trial process for detainees.
“The Pentagon approved vaccines for Gitmo detainees so they can restart their war crimes hearings. There’s 40 total Gitmo detainees. ~13 million Americans have been vaccinated in Biden’s first 10 days,” former Hillary Clinton spokesperson Jesse Lehrich tweeted to Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-California), who publicly criticized the plan.
the Pentagon approved vaccines for Gitmo detainees so they can restart their war crimes hearings.there’s 40 total Gitmo detainees. ~13 million Americans have been vaccinated in Biden’s first 10 days https://t.co/v3JKiC5ior
— Jesse Lehrich (@JesseLehrich) January 30, 2021
“Pentagon issued a rule that the vaccine is being given to ALL of its detainees and prisoners starting friday. So they scream ‘terrorists 1st!’ Note: All prisons are highest level of risk,” author Kurt Eichenwald also tweeted to McCarthy.
Figured it out. BS comes from NY Post. Pentagon issued a rule that the vaccine is being given to ALL of its detainees and prisoners starting friday. So they scream “terrorists 1st!” Note: All prisons are highest level of risk, @GOPLeader prefers violating Geneva Conventions. https://t.co/Cxx2BEjenZ
— Kurt “Masks Save Lives” Eichenwald (@kurteichenwald) January 30, 2021
Vaccines are being offered to HELP prosecutors PROSECUTE. Gitmo cases have been held up due to COVIDDon’t you want terrorists prosecuted?Another badly informed talking point.
— NancyE (@Nancye_P3) January 30, 2021
Plus–Gitmo detainees certainly should get COVID vaccines before I do. They are in a confined environment where prisoners, staff, and those connected to them are at high risk of lethal outbreaks.
— Harold Pollack (@haroldpollack) January 30, 2021
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