Wednesday, April 20, 2005

 

Let's Talk About Gitmo

Two stories on page 15A of today's SAEN regarding the detention center at Gitmo. First, the SAEN happily reports on baseless claims of torture by some recently released prisoners. Second, a story reporting that the AP is suing the DoD for access to documents relating to military hearings for Gitmo detainees. What the SAEN does not tell you is that many detainees at Gitmo are still providing valuable intelligence on al Qaeda. From the Washington Times:
Detainees at Guantanamo Bay are providing the U.S. military with its best information on America's No. 1 enemy, Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda terror group, says a new Pentagon report.

More than three years after many of the al Qaeda and Taliban fighters were captured in Afghanistan, the 550 prisoners continue to divulge new information on recently nabbed bin Laden operatives and on remotely detonated bombs killing U.S. troops in Iraq.

I have to say that knowing this I think the AP could perhaps find something better top do than tie up the DoD with another law suit. The SAEN story about released prisoners goes on to say that "Some freed detainees have charged they were mistreated and tortured..." Well, boo-freaking-hoo. Why do I appear so callous? Here is what happens sometimes when we release folks from Gitmo:
The report said that at least 10 former detainees the Pentagon knows by name have rejoined the war against coalition forces.

One of them, Abdullah Mahsud, had denied links to al Qaeda and said he was forced to join the Taliban army. Today, Mahsud is back in Afghanistan leading a gang of kidnappers.

Perhaps it is time for the SAEN to rethink it's stance on Gitmo. Today's story on page 15A has plenty of accusation against Americans, but not once does it mention the value of the information were are getting there or that some of those released from Gitmo have rejoined the fight. In fact, some of the info learned at Gitmo is helping in Iraq:
The bomb makers picked up in Afghanistan are experts in the same types of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that have killed hundreds of coalition troops, including Americans in Iraq.

"One detainee also detailed how pagers and cellular telephones are used to initiate detonations," said the Pentagon report. "Another detainee has been cooperative enough to draw schematic diagrams of the bombs he designed and built. In addition, he has provided his critiques of the design of IEDs being constructed by terrorists in Iraq."

And in another blow to the left's crazy notion that poverty breeds terrorism:
More than 50 detainees hold college degrees or obtained other higher education. Among the educated are doctors, pilots, engineers, translators, lawyers and computer experts.

A detainee who attended Texas A&M for 18 months "has threatened guards and admits enjoying terrorizing Americans." Others obtained degrees in aviation management and petroleum engineering.

Let's look at the the kind of person that the SAEN and other media appears to be championing:
"A detainee who has assaulted [Guantanamo] guards on numerous occasions and crafted a weapon in his cell stated that he can either go back home and kill as many Americans as he possibly can, or he can leave here in a box," the report said. "Either way, it's the same to him."

Finally, and perhaps most important, the continued detention of these terrorists at Gitmo is a vital strategy in the war on terror:
The capture of these terrorists and others likely deprived al Qaeda of new leaders[emphasis added]. "It is likely that many Guantanamo detainees would have risen to positions of prominence in the leadership ranks of al Qaeda and its associated groups," the Guantanamo report said.

Comments:
baseless claims of torture

From what I've read the claims of torture are hardly baseless. I find it highly disturbing that we would condone such treatment of prisoners regardless of the supposedly "valuable intelligence" we are getting. You can get a person to admit to anything if you use torture methods. That means most if not all the information we are getting there is possibly suspect.

Try reading something other than the Rev. Moon's right-wing rag and you will see what I mean.

Effectiveness of Interrogations Questioned (AP)

U.S. law enforcement agents at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, prison for terrorism suspects concluded that the military's aggressive questioning yielded information that was "suspect at best," according to newly released portions of an FBI document.
 
When I say "baseless claims of torture" I am talking about those recently released detainees in the SAEN story today. Just because they calim it, and it happened before, does not make it so. Therefore, the claims made in today's article are baseless.
 
The SAEN, and the American media in general, do not have to report on claims of abuse everytime they are made.
 
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