April 24, 2011

"A trove of more than 700 classified military documents provides new and detailed accounts of the men who have done time at the Guantánamo Bay prison in Cuba..."

The NYT gained access through WikiLeaks.

ADDED: Here's the WaPo article on the documents — "intelligence assessments of nearly every one of the 779 individuals who have been held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, since 2002. In them, analysts have created detailed portraits of detainees based on raw intelligence, including material gleaned from interrogations."

56 comments:

Julius said...

Well thank God for Wikileaks!

Oh fuck that... just thank Julian Assange...

...'cuz here he has done the NYT's and WaPo's work for them, finding out what is going on in Guantanamo.

If the NYT and WaPo had any ability left, they would have gotten hold of this information on their own.

And we can't trust the Obama Administration to be honest about Guantanamo. Every word about that place that comes from them should be distrusted... after all, didn't Obama promise to shut the whole prison operation there down? Didn't he say-- on his first day of work!-- that he was doing it "as soon as it's practical". Liar!

Obama lies. Republicans lie. Team Assange tells the truth.

Luke Lea said...

To protect ourselves from these guys we spent a trillion dollars?

edutcher said...

I suppose the Gray Lady expects this will make us feel sorry for the cutthroats.

Julius said...

Well thank God for Wikileaks!

Oh fuck that... just thank Julian Assange...

Obama lies. Republicans lie. Team Assange tells the truth.


...except when they verify there were WMDs in Iraq?

David said...

Wow.

Bad leak, revealing focus in the coverage.

NYT article is focused largely on how this supposed evidence fits into the theme of American abuse of prisoners.

WAPO, more interestingly, gives an account of how Al Queda reacted to the aggressive American pressure after 9/11.

Neither paper pays any attention to the possible security and diplomatic damage done to the United States by this leak.

Kind of amazing emphasis, eh?

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

Wait, I've lost track. Are leakers and whistleblowers heroes or villains this week? I can never keep track.

Someone should print a schedule so we can keep this straight.

Crimso said...

"Didn't he say-- on his first day of work!-- that he was doing it "as soon as it's practical". Liar!"

So do tell us when it was practical. Not possible, as that isn't what he said. "Practical." Or is it possible Obama is privy to information we are not, information that makes closing Gitmo impractical once the full picture is in view? Given the flak he's willing to take from his left base, I'm betting that's the case.

Crimso said...

"Someone should print a schedule so we can keep this straight."

What is especially amusing is the refusal by the Icelandic MP to give the U.S. government access to her twitter account as part of the investigation of the leaks. We need a schedule to also determine which secrets are good (and should be kept secret) and which are bad (and should therefore be exposed). I resent Assange assuming the responsibility for keeping the schedule, insofar as he has a clear conflict of interest.

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

Crimso said...

Or is it possible Obama is privy to information we are not, information that makes closing Gitmo impractical once the full picture is in view? Given the flak he's willing to take from his left base, I'm betting that's the case.

I've assumed that was true from the beginning. And I've assumed that President Bush had access to the same full picture, which is why he did exactly what President Obama is doing.

And under those assumptions, if President Obama had an ounce of class, he would stop publicly blaming President Bush for actions he privately endorses. A public apology would go too far, since it would acknowledge facts that (based on these assumptions) should not be publicly acknowledged. But stopping the demonization would show some class.

It hasn't happened. From that I draw the conclusion that President Obama has no class.

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

Crimso said...

I resent Assange assuming the responsibility for keeping the schedule, insofar as he has a clear conflict of interest.

Well, I don't know who doesn't have at least a potential conflict of interest here; but I agree on the concept of assumed responsibility. An electoral system for selecting leaders who will make these kinds of decisions is clearly imperfect; but one person declaring himself the arbiter on these matters is even less perfect.

Voltimand said...

Well, now at last--at last!!--the truth can be told: the United States of America uses coercive force in order to protect itself against attacks on its citizens. Those of us who protested the Vietnam War, against the military draft, and against allowing military recruiting on college campuses, have at last bee proven correct. What is there left to say? War is evil, using coercive or deadly force to defend oneself is evil, and we should should stop it immediately. Otherwise, I'm afraid that I and those who think like me will be forced to go through the rest of out lives knowing--knowing for a certainty!--that there are people who are willing to kill so that we may live.

Am I willing therefore to die in their places? I'll get back to you on that . . .

george said...

I don't give Obama credit for being smart enough to realize he shouldn't close Gitmo. Congress told him to pound sand on that and also on his plans to try illegal combatants in a criminal court. He just doesn't have the juice to get it done. He may or may not say he changed his mind depending on who he is talking to at the time but there is little doubt he would close the place if he could.

I am fairly certain Obama will go to his grave without figuring out why he was forbidden to do these things and why he was foolish to even consider it.

What I don't understand is why the Supreme Court that was so hot and heavy to have these savages tried expeditiously when Bush was president hasn't said squat about the fact Obama has made no progress in that regard. It's almost like the whole issue was just cynically drummed up for partisan reasons and the SC was just used as a tool.

Voltimand said...

George:

"What I don't understand is why the Supreme Court that was so hot and heavy to have these savages tried expeditiously when Bush was president hasn't said squat about the fact Obama has made no progress in that regard."

This is a non-starter. SCOTUS doesn't exist to issue daily briefings addressed to the other branches of government. As the French say, "what would you?"

OTOH, always glad to see in public an articulation of the utter silliness of the current potus. I think James Buchanan could have run--scelrotic--circles around him. Obama's existence serves the estimable purpose of reminding ourselves daily of the truly phenomenal mindlessness of the democratic party. When your enemy is utterly clueless as to his own cluelessness, that's when he becomes truly dangerous.

cubanbob said...

I never understood why this scum was simply not interrogated and when they had nothing more of use to give simply summarily executed. They are outside of international law and Congress ought to strip the courts of any power over this matter. Foreign terrorists captured outside of the US are stateless terrorists and as such terrorist are forfeit any and all rights. Like pirates back in the day.

Gary Rosen said...

what cubanbob said

Gary Rosen said...

"if President Obama had an ounce of class"

oh haha hehe hohoho

Martin you are such a kidder!

AST said...

And these documents demonstrate the innocence of these inmates? No? They really don't demonstrate any atrocities against them, either, considering the nature of Al Qaeda. The Times' piece is shamelessly tendentious, and the WaPo's is not really anything new.

Neither supports the pacifists' case against either the war or the detentions at Gitmo. Remember that these captives are the kind of beasts who murdered Daniel Pearl.

Nobody should kid himself that the struggle with international terrorism is over. It will make the Cold War seem neat and simple, and we're doing our best to pretend it doesn't really exist.

Revenant said...

The Washington Post article was pretty interesting.

Don't Tread 2012 said...

"...including sleep deprivation, shackling in stress positions and prolonged exposure to cold temperatures..."

Funny, nothing in the headline regarding Reid and Pelosi galore's ramming through of ObamaKare (a redistributive leftist scheme disguised as 'health care').

If the American people can be exposed to these conditions, then the animals representing the best ideology from the 12th century don't deserve any better.

sarge said...

"Foreign terrorists captured outside of the US are stateless terrorists and as such terrorist are forfeit any and all rights"

yar much like old lt. claire chenualt an his flyin tigers wuz stateless terrorists in the eyes of them japanese saviors of china

one mans terrerist is another mans freedom fighter

sides thars great evidence lots of them gitmo detainies wuz innocent of anything but bein turned in for bounties

3 of em got beat an strangled just before they was to be released d/t bein innocent -some gitmo troops reported thar crime but eric holder coverd it up an is now complcet in murder an most unnamerikan torture

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guantanamo_Bay_homicide_accusations

sarge said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael said...

Good thing Obama shut down Gitmo.

The Drill SGT said...

Beyond this little nugget, I was relatively pleased with the contents of the files and the work being done at Gitmo: But they also show that an even larger number of the prisoners who have left Cuba — about a third of the 600 already transferred to other countries — were also designated “high risk” before they were freed or passed to the custody of other governments.

The Drill SGT said...

Voltimand said...
Otherwise, I'm afraid that I and those who think like me will be forced to go through the rest of out lives knowing--knowing for a certainty!--that there are people who are willing to kill so that we may live


LOL....

Orwell, said (may not be his quote though) it better, but I enjoyed your take regardless:

"People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf."

A Toast to our rough men!

TWM said...

Is it wrong of me not to care about the mopes in Guantanamo? I suppose so, but really if it's wrong I don't want to be right.

damikesc said...

Julius, few lie as frequetly as Assange. And few hate whistle blowers more than he.

Erik said...

I'm still not convinced that these guys in Gitmo are treated any worse than prisoners in American prisons. Now, I might not be happy about the treatment in some cases, but I find it difficult to summon any great amount of outrage over it. So far, nearly everything I've read about the situation seems to justify the existence of Gitmo, despite the NYT spin on things.

More vindication for Bush's policy, in the end. I rather hoped Obama would come to this conclusion as well, but I can't give him credit for a policy essentially forced onto him. Gitmo has been imperfect, but given the possible outcomes I prefer imperfect to disastrous. I have no doubt Obama could have found a disastrous "solution" to this problem if given the chance, given his proclivity for disastrous "solutions" to problems in other policy areas.

The Drill SGT said...

@Erik, 0724

pay attention Althouse, That is what pragmatic looks like :)

Class factotum said...

"...including sleep deprivation, shackling in stress positions and prolonged exposure to cold temperatures..."

1. New parents.
2. The weights class at my YMCA.
3. Living in Wisconsin.

We are all being tortured now.

Karl said...

on page 3 this: "The documents can be mined for evidence supporting beliefs across the political spectrum about the relative perils posed by the detainees and whether the government’s system of holding most without trials is justified"

After doing exactly that for the first two pages.

Freeman Hunt said...

If the NYT is anything, it is predictable.

Aridog said...

"There's too much stress on taking prisoners. Our job is to annihilate the enemy."

Gen. Creighton Abrams.

Pogo said...

It's to Obama's credit that the massive and seemingly endless anti-war and anti-Gitmo demonstrations and marches which have continued since Bush left office have not altered his steely determination.

The Drill SGT said...

Aridog said...
"There's too much stress on taking prisoners. Our job is to annihilate the enemy."


Note the sound of crickets chirping in that article and ask yourself this question.

It's been 2 years since Obama took office, we've had a surge in A-stan, yet no new prisoners at Gitmo? Surely we take some? Where do they go? Who holds them? How are they treated? Do we interogate using the terrorist friendly Army FM, or do we have surrogates rip out fingernails? What do we learn?

The NYT's doesn't want to know.

Instead it wants to rehash Bushitler.

The Drill SGT said...

Aridog said...
"There's too much stress on taking prisoners. Our job is to annihilate the enemy."


On a different note, at the squadie level, some SSG is briefing his troops before a patrol:

"OK guys, the old man didn't specificly ask for prisoners this time, so mark your targets well. It's a dangerous world out there. 2 in the chest and 1 in the head, then move on. Let's all come back from this one."

Point is, if we aren't exploiting the intelligence value of prisoners, then there isn't much point in risking anything taking prisoners, is there?

Freeman Hunt said...

It's been 2 years since Obama took office, we've had a surge in A-stan, yet no new prisoners at Gitmo? Surely we take some? Where do they go? Who holds them? How are they treated? Do we interogate using the terrorist friendly Army FM, or do we have surrogates rip out fingernails? What dowe learn?

Exactly.

Where does the NYT think the prisoners would be if not at Gitmo? Constant carping about torture at Gitmo will only get detainees transferred elsewhere where they do Torture with a capital T. Or get them blown up by missiles because they aren't worth taking alive.

Leland said...

Good comment by Erik @7:24 and follow up by Drill SGT and Freeman.

Sorry, can't add much to what they said, but I do wish to agree.

Ut said...

Meanwhile, Commandant Obama-Klink has lost control of Stalag 17 in Afghanistan, as hundreds of terrorists easily break out of his "prison" in Kandahar.

http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/asiapcf/04/25/afghanistan.prison.break/index.html?hpt=T2

Said Commandant Obama: "I know nothinnnnnnnnnnk."

Ever notice that whenever Obama takes over a prison ... the terrorists seem to find it terribly easy to get out of that prison?

Ut said...

" ... yet no new prisoners at Gitmo? Surely we take some? Where do they go? Who holds them? How are they treated?"

Our forces capture them.

But then Obama's prison commanders in Kandahar let them out the back door.

Maguro said...

It's been 2 years since Obama took office, we've had a surge in A-stan, yet no new prisoners at Gitmo? Surely we take some? Where do they go? Who holds them? How are they treated? Do we interogate using the terrorist friendly Army FM, or do we have surrogates rip out fingernails? What do we learn?

Good question. There's a big detention facility at Bagram AB, but interestingly, there haven't been any leaks on what goes on there.

Probably a lot fewer prisoners being taken, too, given all the hassles associated with keeping them these days. Much easier/safer/more efficient to just have a JDAM dropped on a house than have your guys kick down the door and try to apprehend someone.

Quayle said...

Where does the NYT think the prisoners would be if not at Gitmo? Constant carping about torture at Gitmo will only get detainees transferred elsewhere where they do Torture with a capital T.

I think they should be transferred to the general population at Rikers Island.

MadisonMan said...

Is Assange still in prison? Or is he out pending his extradition hearing?

MadisonMan said...

Constant carping about torture at Gitmo will only get detainees transferred elsewhere where they do Torture with a capital T.

Build a compound in Isle Royale National Park. Drop the detainees off in late October. Let them experience the difficulties American Settlers (and native Americans) had to overcome to settle this great Country. Release the survivors the following Spring.

Republican said...

Take no prisoners.

Shoot to kill. Kill on sight.

Phil 3:14 said...

Well thank God for Wikileaks!
Julius;
Your assumption is that revealed secrets are truth.

And not to replay old battles but wasn't it clear in 2008 that a one term Senator (who essentially spent most of Senate term campaigning) with little "applicable" experience prior to that, would have to "learn on the job".

Is it a broken promise when its made in ignorance?

Crimso said...

"It's been 2 years since Obama took office, we've had a surge in A-stan, yet no new prisoners at Gitmo? Surely we take some? Where do they go?"

Apparently through a tunnel.

Aridog said...

Surely we take some? Where do they go? Who holds them? How are they treated?

Good questions to ask about whatever prisoners our enemies capture.

The Drill SGT said...

Crimso said...
Apparently through a tunnel.


Catch and release. Sporting of us hehe?

Alex said...

The day Assange is put in front of a firing squad will be a great day.

The Drill SGT said...

Alex said...
The day Assange is put in front of a firing squad will be a great day.


Maybe we can hope that he vists AQ or Hamas instead

Carol_Herman said...

Don't waste my time!

Gitmo houses 700 of the worst Al-Kay-Duy has that we caught! We spent close to a trillion dollars! So we can make sure they get Halal meals. Have Korans. And, prayer rugs. And, they know FOR SURE we won't cut their heads off with dull knives. Even in retaliation!

America is just playing GOOFY!

And, Don Rumsfeld (in his memoir), says, he was the guy who set policy! And, he CUT BACK on what General Franks wanted ... which was a 2000 bed hotel.

I dunno. But we would'a done a whole lot better if we just had these idiots walk the plank as the ship was crossing the Atlantic.

Meanwhile, Israel, it seems, has the right ideas! Add a few viruses. And, instead of the TEN PLAGUES that is read aloud each year ... Including at Jesus' Last Supper ... there's a similar advantage to NOT taking any credit. As the Koran movers and shakers ... have to buy their modern technology.

And, that's probably the best way to do it, too. Screw up their computers. Let them depend on carrier pigeons.

Obama still hates Israel! And, just like Dubya, who "thought up" the idea of splitting Israel in half ... has to deal, now, with daily events that must challenge him and his stinking crew mates. Libya? Well, that's jolly. With russian help the odds are on Q-Daffy surviving. And, ahead? Russians will get billions. While Tony Blair won't get enriched.

That's what's really happening, now.

And, the saud's? They're not better off!

It's a house of cards.

One card placed on top makes the bottom shake loose.

Go ahead. Place your bets!

Livni, yesterday, lost a 24-year-old nephew. Who was shot by a Palestinian cop. Where the cop was trained by General Jones. And, our Congress plunked $25-billion into the pockets of corrupt arabs.

Maybe, you should worry when the silence is so extreme?

Obama's plans? Obama ain't his real name. Give this 3 more weeks. Lawyers will have "issues" for the next 100 years.

Heck, the LSAT may have to go under drastic revision?

If TRUMP wins, I hope he cuts our the State Department. There's lots of good property scattered all about this globe. It doesn't need diplomats pants dancing inside them.

We may watch Americans doing the right thing in droves?

Fen said...

Am I willing therefore to die in their places? I'll get back to you on that

Don't bullshit. The real question is "are you going to consign your family and friends to peace at any price.

War is NOT evil. People are.

Roger J. said...

Drill: as an habitue of the little red river fishery in arkansas, I remain committed to catch and release as it applies to brown trout and rainbows--with terrorists--not so much

Karl said...

If not Gitmo, why not Minot?

it's a pleasant place where the Air Force re-locates their whiners, douche bags, malcontents, and losers.

opfor311 said...

Actually, Karl, I'd prefer a small compound about 10 miles from McMurdo AFB. You wouldn't even need a fence.

As an other note, hanging is too good for anyone who leaks classified material. Drawing and Quartering might work to encourage the others.....

AST said...

This piece lead me on a search for the etymology of "jury-rigged." It's an old maritime term, but it's not necessarily a negative one. Jury rigs were pre-planned to use in case of the loss of a major spar or mast, because it wasn't practical to carry spare masts on sailing ships. The "jury" seems to have come from the Latin root that also lead to "adjure." Perhaps the sense is that these measures were dictated or made necessary by circumstances, but that's a hypothesis.

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