Speaking at a White House news conference on Tuesday, President Obama told reporters that there was no need for a special long-term detention & interrogation facility like Guantanamo Bay prison.
"I continue to believe that we've got to close Guantanamo," the President said. "I think it is critical for us to understand that Guantanamo is not necessary to keep America safe... And I understand that in the immediate aftermath of 9/11, with the traumas that had taken place, why, for a lot of Americans, the notion was somehow that we had to create a special facility like Guantanamo, and we couldn't handle this in a normal, conventional fashion. I understand that reaction. But we're now over a decade out. We should be wiser."
But the President's views runs counter to the views of U.S Navy admiral and commander of U.S. Special Operations Command, William McRaven, who, when asked by Sen. Kelly Ayotte - during a Senate Armed Services Committee confirmation hearing in June of 2011 - whether there was a need for a long-term detention & interrogation facility, like Guantanamo Bay, to gather vital intelligence information - replied in the affirmative, saying that a detention center of this nature is indeed "very helpful".
Sen. Kelly Ayotte proceeded to ask Adm. McRaven: "And as far as you understand it, is Guantanamo Bay still off the table in terms of being used for that type of facility?" McRaven replied: "As far as I understand it, it is."
Apparently, President Obama issued a directive forbidding the use of Guantanamo Bay as an interrogation and intelligence-gathering facility.