September 2, 2014

Standish Max the focus at Stop Gitmo North town hall

Standish residents make the trip

Posted

ROCHESTER — The Standish Maximum Correctional Facility (SMF) was the focal point of attention and conversation at a Stop Gitmo North town hall held in Rochester Monday evening.

The town hall meeting to show opposition to the proposal of the federal government housing Guantanamo Bay detainees in SMF played host to a panel made up of retired U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Gordon Cucullu; former Department of Defense Terrorism Analyst Peter Leitner; Michigan Senate Majority Leader, Mike Bishop; Michigan Corrections Officer Chief Steward Tom Kerrins; Standish businessman Dave Munson; Standish resident Kelly Kimball; and Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard.

Kimball said the panel spoke about some of the dangerous and life-changing experiences that people in Standish would have to put up with.

She said Cucullu spoke about the alleged job creation that would follow the transfer or Gitmo detainees, saying the military personnel serving there would only stay temporarily, working on tours of duty.

“They’re not going to assimilate into the community at all,” Kimball said. “They’re not going to take up residence here.”

She added that Cucullu also spoke about the Gitmo conditions for suspected terrorists. Kimball said he told the audience at the town hall that detainees receive care from Red Cross, and state of the art medical and dental care as well.

Standish residents Dave Munson and, new reports say, Kelly Kimball, made the trip to voice their opposition at the Rochester meeting, which was called by the Michigan Coalition to Stop Gitmo North.

Kelly continued that Leitner called the move to close Gitmo a “bureaucratic maneuver” and added that even when prosecution is pursued the trials drag on.

Leitner, according to Kimball, also said small-scale attacks would be much more likely if Guantanamo Bay detainees were relocated to Standish.

“It will encourage lone wolf attacks,” Kimball said.

The closure of I-75 and government seizure of land was also discussed, a topic Kimball has raised in the past at other events regarding Gitmo detainees being held in Standish Max.

Kimball and Munson were both also present at an informal meeting at city hall Thursday, at which only three city council members attended, preventing an official meeting. Citizens of the city who attended were allowed to speak with the members of city council despite the lack of quorum necessary to carry out official business.

Similar meetings are planned for Lansing and Okemos on Tuesday.

Kimball said approximately 400 people attended the town hall meeting.

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