The Notebook: Closing Gitmo

Katie Couric is on assignment. I'm Randall Pinkston.

Today, President Obama issued an executive order to close the detention center at Guantanamo Bay within a year, and to end the harsh interrogation tactics of its prisoners.

Just last week, a Bush Administration official admitted to Bob Woodward that at least one inmate had been tortured at Gitmo. The Saudi national was stripped naked, degraded, and physically abused.

The new president is sending a message: that is not America. That is not the behavior of the world's moral authority.

But Americans are divided on the decision. In a new CBS News poll, 48 percent said they want Gitmo to remain open.

It's a rocky road to the moral high ground. That Saudi national is accused of plotting to be the twentieth hijacker on September 11th.

In determining the actions necessary to secure America, President Obama will wrestle with the fine line between justice - and justifying the means.