In its "war on terror," the United States government has ignored fundamental legal principles and human rights protections, making the detainees at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the new "wretched of the earth." This essay argues that the detainees serve as the means for politicians and lawmakers to both keep the public in a constant state of fear and display strength in the area of national security. For their part, the people of the United States are complacent about the legal violations at Guantanamo because the detainees have been emphatically constructed as the alien incomprehensible "Other" and outside the boundaries of the recognizably human.



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