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Notes From Guantánamo
January 9, 2012 12:41 PM   Subscribe

My Guantánamo Nightmare. Lakhdar Boumediene was imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay for seven years without explanation or charge until his case made it to the Supreme Court, leading to a decision which bears his name and his release ordered by a federal judge. The NYTimes has his and another account from another former detainee: Notes From a Guantánamo Survivor. [Via]
posted by homunculus (63 comments total) 19 users marked this as a favorite

 
Anyone want to take bets on how quickly all of this will be conveniently forgotten once the 'war on terror' is over?
posted by anaximander at 1:01 PM on January 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Silly goose! the war on terror will never be over...ever. It's entire function is to provide perpetual war, hence perpetual curtailment of civil liberties and the continued sacking of the national purse strings by the military industrial (and political) complex. Our president just recently signed the bill that effectively repeals the Bill of Rights. This case will be forgotten not because the war on terror is over, but because there will be innumerable similar cases.
posted by txmon at 1:10 PM on January 9, 2012 [24 favorites]


This is overblown nonsense; we're only getting one side of the story here, and there's obviously some items he decided to filter out. I'm also surprised he decided to move to France of all places...

He whines about losing sleep and being put in awkward positions, but then went and started fasting. Sounds like he brought torture onto himself. He talks about missing his kids, but actively trying to die of starvation negates that he really cared about them.

Speaking of suicide and seven years captive, has anyone seen Homeland? Dude from the show seems to be doing fine with his family.

I hope he does better and all (since he seems like one of the good ones), but I'd be interested to hear the other side of the story before pressing judgment.
posted by Mach3avelli at 1:12 PM on January 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


[golf clap]
posted by digitalprimate at 1:14 PM on January 9, 2012 [15 favorites]


txmon, what I find darkly hilarious about this whole situation is how, if this was written into a novel by any contemporary writer, it would be treated as the beginning of some sort of dystopian nightmare.

But we'd never let that happen in real life, right?

Mach3avelli:

I hope he does better and all (since he seems like one of the good ones), but I'd be interested to hear the other side of the story before pressing judgment.

What 'other side of the story'? The government had no basis on which to hold him. What exactly are you implying here - that the fact he went on a hunger strike means that he was secretly guilty of something?
posted by anaximander at 1:15 PM on January 9, 2012 [6 favorites]


Poe strikes again, I have no idea if Mach3avelli is serious or not.
posted by sotonohito at 1:16 PM on January 9, 2012 [9 favorites]


Why did they keep just one of the guys they grabbed in Bosnia? Was Bensayah grabbed on actual evidence and the rest of them, including Boumediene, just people who had innocent connections with Bensayah? Or did poor Bensayah just not get a good lawyer?
posted by pracowity at 1:17 PM on January 9, 2012


I thought we were already doing a good job of 'conveniently forgetting' this kind of thing. And Mach3avelli wins the Eponysterical Badge.

As one whose eye muscles have grown sore from rolling at the crappiness of most NYT links here, I must commend the Grey Lady for publishing these. But seriously, "Opinion"? (eyes rolling, ouch!) Is that all that Unpleasant Truths have become?
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:17 PM on January 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


since he seems like one of the good ones

WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU
posted by odinsdream at 1:20 PM on January 9, 2012 [19 favorites]


7 years? I'd be looking for payback.
posted by coolguymichael at 1:22 PM on January 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


But seriously, "Opinion"? (eyes rolling, ouch!) Is that all that Unpleasant Truths have become?

I think any first-hand account written by non-staff who is the subject of the article gets slotted under 'Opinion.'
posted by shakespeherian at 1:28 PM on January 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Anyone want to take bets on how quickly all of this will be conveniently forgotten once the 'war on terror' is over?

Over? Like the 'War on Drugs'? That kind of over?
posted by PenDevil at 1:29 PM on January 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


He whines about losing sleep and being put in awkward positions, but then went and started fasting. Sounds like he brought torture onto himself. He talks about missing his kids, but actively trying to die of starvation negates that he really cared about them.

Get back under your bridge
posted by clockzero at 1:29 PM on January 9, 2012 [31 favorites]




Our president just recently signed the bill that effectively repeals the Bill of Rights.

Does the NDAA expand the government’s detention authority?
posted by weston at 1:47 PM on January 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and Rice all enjoy lifelong gubmnt benefits and pensions.

We are fucking doomed.
posted by dbiedny at 1:57 PM on January 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


since he seems like one of the good ones
---
WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU


For fucking real. The entire comment was hilariously awful, but that made it flagged as racist trollmastery - GTFO.
posted by FatherDagon at 1:59 PM on January 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


LMFAO at "one of the good ones."
posted by dixiecupdrinking at 2:02 PM on January 9, 2012


We can all tell our grandkids how we preserved their way of life by quietly and deliberately ceding the moral high-ground on this "Terror" thing.
posted by bonobothegreat at 2:05 PM on January 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


edit: /satire

Wow, I would have thought relating his experience to a TV drama would have been overt enough. Or the "hunger strike = fasting" thing. Or the pernicious xenophobia/racism.

Maybe you should spend less time on the internet. Or more?

Discuss.
posted by Mach3avelli at 2:11 PM on January 9, 2012 [8 favorites]


This case will be forgotten not because the war on terror is over, but because there will be innumerable similar cases. outrage fatigue has set in and besides there's a new, must-see "Keeping Up with the Kardashians" on tonight.

FTFY.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 2:14 PM on January 9, 2012


The fact that the United States had made a mistake was clear from the beginning. Bosnia’s highest court investigated the American claim, found that there was no evidence against me and ordered my release.
That to me is one of the most amazing (or amazingly disgusting) things about this. A lot of the Gitmo detanees were found to be held on bad evidence, once they actually had to go to court. But here a court actually looked at the evidence before he was ever arrested, and they decided there wasn't any.

So what did the U.S. government do? They just kidnapped him right outside the courthouse. That's what 'Extraordinary rendition' actually is. Just straight up kidnapping.
I hope he does better and all (since he seems like one of the good ones), but I'd be interested to hear the other side of the story before pressing judgment.
...
edit: /satire

It seemed like satire to me, but it was really subtle. In particular, you made it sound like you were trying to be reasonable by saying stuff like "I hope he does better" and "I'd be interested in hearing the other side of the story" You weren't going for Santorum/Gingrich/Cheney level crazy. It's hard to tell if you're being sarcastic when you're actually being more reasonable then the actual people who take the other side.

Anyway, the thing is, of course: "The other side" is all classified anyway. We'll never see it, unless it becomes declassified. One of the reasons I'm disappointed in Obama is that he swept this all under the rug. "We have to look forward, not backward" (and of course "upward not forward, and always twirling, twirling, twirling towards justice")

Of course, that doesn't apply to a lot of the people actually in Guantanamo. Those are dangerous terrorist, who, although they've been in prison for a decade and we don't have any solid evidence they've ever broken any laws, we still need to 'look backwards' and also they are totally like super villans who can McGuiver nuclear bombs which is why they're too dangerous to be put in the same prisons that house Charles Manson and held McVeigh, bla bla bla.
posted by delmoi at 2:34 PM on January 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


That to me is one of the most amazing (or amazingly disgusting) things about this. A lot of the Gitmo detanees were found to be held on bad evidence, once they actually had to go to court.

IT'S ABOUT OUR RESOLVE DELMOI
posted by Hoopo at 2:48 PM on January 9, 2012


So what did the U.S. government do? They just kidnapped him right outside the courthouse. That's what 'Extraordinary rendition' actually is. Just straight up kidnapping.

It's a shame that kidnapping isn't a crime in the U.S....
posted by ennui.bz at 2:52 PM on January 9, 2012


Chris Bertram writes briefly about Shaker Aamer:
The position of the last British detainee at Guantanamo, Shaker Aamer, is in the UK news today. He’s never been charged with anything and was “cleared for release” under the Bush administration. He is in failing health. For protesting about his own treatment and that of others, he is confined to the punishment block. It seems the reason the Aamer can’t be released today is that the US Congress has imposed absurd certification requirements on the US Secretary of Defense, such that Panetta would be personally reponsible for any future criminal actions by the released inmate. One of the reasons why the US Congress has put these obstacles up is because of claims made by the US military about “recidivism”, claims that also get some scrutiny in the report. It would seem that subsequent protests about conditions in the camp, writing a book about it or making a film, are counted as instances of “recidivism”.
posted by vanar sena at 2:57 PM on January 9, 2012 [2 favorites]




Oh no, it can't be the govt doing strange things here, can it?

Noting the interview with the Gitmo captive who was played Kris Kristofferson music to try and break him. Our tax dollars at work, killing right to trial wasn't enough for them, apparently.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 3:23 PM on January 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


It's a shame that kidnapping isn't a crime in the U.S....

Well, typically you're not going to be prosecuted in the U.S. for crimes you commit overseas, except for a handful of laws that make it illegal to go over seas for the purpose of doing things like having sex with children.

The people who carried out the Bosnian abduction would be liable under Bosnian law, and in fact there have been cases of CIA agents having charges filed against them, I think in Italy (edit: yup) for their renditions in those countries. But the U.S. government would apply diplomatic pressure not to prosecute, and a small country like Bosnia probably would do what we ask.
posted by delmoi at 3:23 PM on January 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


You know who else brought torture onto himself?

Gandhi

He was a whiner too. vada pav burger
posted by formless at 3:31 PM on January 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


[If you need to discuss trolling, go to MetaTalk to do it. If you are coming across as if you are trolling here, you should maybe step up your non-trolling game To others: nothing is lost by ignoring someone you think is trolling. Absolutely nothing.]
posted by jessamyn at 3:48 PM on January 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Re: the NDAA analysis linked by weston -- can anybody tell me why any of that is reassuring?

I might've skimmed over something important, but it seems to me like the nut of the article was "Don't worry, this doesn't erode your rights any further: It only cements an already-sinister interpretation of civil-liberties put in place by a gang of war criminals." Somehow I don't feel better.

It seems like almost all of the protections described in the Act hinge on the interpretation of "terrorist" (which is rivaled only by "hipster" in its increasingly unspecific definition); "end of hostilities" (have we set a date for that yet?), and the faith that constitutional breaches will actually be punished. Which has gone so well lately.

So yeah. Any more uplifting interpretations would be welcome.
posted by Misunderestimated at 3:58 PM on January 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


Part of the problem is that Cheney was so successful in framing the situation by consistently saying that the people detained at Gitmo were people that had been "picked up on the battlefield." He repeated this talking point over and over, and so did the apologists, of course, so successfully that it ramed the public's understanding of what Gitmo was all about. Journalist Jack Hitt did a Peabody Award-winning takedown of this fiction for This American Life, which is available as a free download.
posted by planetkyoto at 3:59 PM on January 9, 2012 [6 favorites]


Thanks for that, planet. Sometimes I forget how infuriatingly outrageous the whole Guantanamo clusterfuck is. Good thing Obama's fixing tha- oh wait.
posted by Misunderestimated at 4:34 PM on January 9, 2012


So yeah. Any more uplifting interpretations would be welcome.

Here's Gitmo's explanation. Puppets are uplifting.
posted by homunculus at 4:38 PM on January 9, 2012


Oh good. So basically that whole breakdown of the NDAA was utter crap and it is as bad as we think.

...you're right, it was much better having that revelation delivered by a puppet. Maybe the White House should look into replacing Jay Carney with Kermit if they plan on continuing to legislatively gang-bang the American people.
posted by Misunderestimated at 5:08 PM on January 9, 2012


Re: the NDAA analysis linked by weston -- can anybody tell me why any of that is reassuring?

I think there is some reassurance under the headings "Does it repeal the Bill of Rights?" (no) and "Is there anything in the NDAA about which human rights groups and civil libertarians ought to be pleased?" (yes).

But reassurance is not necessarily what I'm hoping people take away from that summary. I posted it largely because I think a lot of the boil-downs of the NDAA have been terrible, and this is one of the very few examinations I can find that seems informative and credible.

I do think that it suggests that some of the concern is overblown... and a lot of the discussion is hyperbolic. But where the concern isn't (and I agree there's some cause for concern) I also think it points correctly back to the AUMF and our general reaction to terrorism in the last 10 years as the more significant development. And while this summary doesn't point back further, some of the reading I've done suggests the legislative and institutional roots of the problem go back further.

A lot of the narratives in current circulation seems to focus on what a stinker Obama's been, or how blasé congress seems to be about signing away our rights, as if these particular officeholders are clear traitors who have somehow together literally repealed the Bill of Rights. I see this as hyperbolic and hamfisted, but I don't think that's necessarily the problem with it. The biggest issue I have is thinking that it's the current leadership, or the recent "gang of war criminals," when what I'm seeing suggests that it's systemic and has a long history... if a restrained one.

I have faith that restraint isn't about to burst anytime soon, but to bring it back to the article, Boumediene's story reminds me that even if the problems and abuses are narrow, they have a terrible enough human cost that it's probably worth trying to do something about. Doing it is going to require thinking systemically and culturally, though, rather than focusing on the current officeholder slate.
posted by weston at 5:23 PM on January 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


To others: nothing is lost by ignoring someone you think is trolling. Absolutely nothing.

Not true, jessamyn. Chastising, calling out, and socially excluding are accomplished. All worthwhile, in this case, and others.
posted by IAmBroom at 5:29 PM on January 9, 2012


"end of hostilities" (have we set a date for that yet?)

I'm guessing it will coincide with the date that Mickey Mouse enters the public domain.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 5:34 PM on January 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


Part of the problem is that Cheney was so successful in framing the situation by consistently saying that the people detained at Gitmo were people that had been "picked up on the battlefield."

There is more on the subject (including quotes) here. Either we were intentionally lied to, or those who defended indefinite detention at Guantanamo Bay were poorly informed and very mistaken.

On the bright side, when Rumsfeld said, "These are people, all of whom were captured on a battlefield," he was at least kind enough not to lie about the fact that they are people.
posted by compartment at 5:55 PM on January 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


My understanding is that the whole world is considered to be a "battlefield" for the purposes of the War on Terror. So yeah, all these guys were captured on the battlefield. The next trick will probably be redefining the whole world to be an extraterritorial prison, so that people can be captured without having been kidnapped, and locked up without having been detained.
posted by Joe in Australia at 6:36 PM on January 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


weston -- while I'm glad the NDAA doesn't outright repeal the Bill of Rights, I'm no longer convinced that it matters.

When stuff like habeas corpus, the Geneva Conventions on torture, and prohibitions against domestic spying start getting thrown by the wayside, it starts to seem like there's not much that can't be circumvented if it's deemed expedient. We've already moved up to assassinating one of our own citizens away from the battlefield under this administration. That's flatly unconstitutional. There's no reason to think that justifications for the continued whittling of civil liberty won't be dreamed up.

Regardless of the historical precedent, I think the current administration deserves to be singled out for passing up a crucial opportunity to denounce that trend. The Bush administration committed one of the most egregious desecrations of American values in recent memory. Maybe it wouldn't make sense to put Bush on trial -- but Obama should have at least pointed fingers, named names, and vehemently disavowed the crimes of the previous eight years. Maybe he shouldn't have indicted Bush -- but he should have stopped just short of doing so. Any decent president should have.

Instead, we got milquetoast platitudes and a de facto acceptance of the new precedent. Obama promised to close Guantanamo. Apart from all the other important reasons to follow through on that, it would at the very least have been an important symbolic gesture of righting past wrongs and starting a new chapter. Not only could he not pull that off, we get this new shit lumped on as well.

It doesn't really seem to matter how hyperbolic the discussions of the NDAA are. Maybe it's not as bad as people say it is; maybe it's not much worse than what we already had. But the take-home message is that it's not better, and even if it's only a little bit worse, it's still getting worse. And then you have to wonder how much worse it can get.
posted by Misunderestimated at 6:41 PM on January 9, 2012 [6 favorites]


And really -- are we suffering from such diminished expectations that not repealing the Bill of Rights can be counted as an accomplishment for the President? That the fact the question is even in dispute doesn't warrant concern? "Yes, it's true, there's a lot of bad shit in there -- but at least he didn't tear up the very foundation of our government, so give the guy some credit."
posted by Misunderestimated at 6:52 PM on January 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


My understanding is that the whole world is considered to be a "battlefield" for the purposes of the War on Terror.

Which essentially strips the word of all meaning.
posted by compartment at 8:16 PM on January 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


My life in a GITMO dungeon (43 comments)

Dungeons & Dragons products soon available for purchase (230 comments)

Welp.
posted by hamida2242 at 9:10 PM on January 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


Instead, we got milquetoast platitudes and a de facto acceptance of the new precedent. Obama promised to close Guantanamo. Apart from all the other important reasons to follow through on that, it would at the very least have been an important symbolic gesture of righting past wrongs and starting a new chapter. Not only could he not pull that off, we get this new shit lumped on as well.

The recent NDAA is only the latest Bill from Congress to make it literally illegal for Obama to close Guantanamo. Obama followed through on his promise to close Guantanamo on the first day of his administration. Congress were the ones to put a stop to it.
posted by yoink at 9:34 PM on January 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


My life in a GITMO dungeon (43 comments)
Dungeons & Dragons products soon available for purchase (230 comments)


I can imagine how to bust prisoners out of a necromancer's tower. All it takes is a little effort and creativity. Maybe I'd to find a vorpal sword or master the fireball spell, but it's possible. At this point it's easier to imagine that than to imagine a way to rescue innocent prisoners from gitmo.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 11:14 PM on January 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


I was going to post the story from the FPP but I thought "What's the point?" I finally understand why adults of my parents' generation hated Holocaust stories.

The USA has reached the point where good people, normal people, are OK with the fact that their government kidnaps strangers from distant countries and has them raped in a government facility. They support their President's right to assassinate people. They discuss whether foreigners have even the most fundamental human rights of life and liberty. Meanwhile, they are subject to secret laws and scrutinised by secret authorities and prosecuted by secret tribunals. So yes, what happened to this guy is appalling, but it's just one more body on the pile of corpses. He's still alive, which is more than a lot of people in similar circumstances can say.
posted by Joe in Australia at 12:11 AM on January 10, 2012 [8 favorites]


Just wait until someone comes along and says, "Gee! The War on Terror went so well, lets apply the same principles to the War on Drugs!" Say, maybe, that seemingly sane Mormon guy, with a name like a cat or something.
posted by Goofyy at 1:09 AM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


What I've learned from this is that if the US government tries to extradite me on a terrorism charge, and our courts let me go (I'm Norwegian), I'd better have a getaway car waiting behind the court house, and a series of hideaways prepared.
posted by Harald74 at 2:17 AM on January 10, 2012


It takes time to lay the political foundation for the prosecutions against those who tortured. The first step is to raise awareness of what happened.
posted by humanfont at 4:42 AM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


We've already moved up to assassinating one of our own citizens away from the battlefield under this administration.

Actually the obama administration has assassinated several U.S. citizens, one of which was a minor.

And since we still have folks trying to run damage control for the president about the NDAA I see we have to go over this again. Yes, the NDAA allows for the indefinite detention of American citizens. We have numerous senators, representatives, and even the President himself on the record as saying that it does in fact apply to American citizens. Now whether this authority will stand the test of a supreme court challenge remains to be seen, but given the way they have been operating so far the administration and congress will do everything in their power to make sure no such challenge occurs until it is certain to be rubber stamped by the SCOTUS. Incrementalism is the name of the game here. What's even more disturbing is that it was in fact the president himself who asked for language to be removed from the NDAA which would have exempted U.S. citizens.

It takes time to lay the political foundation for the prosecutions against those who tortured. The first step is to raise awareness of what happened.

There will be no prosecutions. AG Holder has said as much.
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 5:36 AM on January 10, 2012


Aside from the paper definitions of "constitution", it is defined as "composition", "make-up", "temperament" and "health". There are some who believe that our constitution should only apply to Americans, and recent actions by congress emphasize what a popular idea this is.

I believe our constitution defines the foundation for everything America is governmentally. With habeas corpus enshrined in Article 1, Section 9 and "rapid trial of all criminal prosecutions" in Amendment 6, indefinite detention anywhere by American hands is a stain on the fabric of our country. What we apply to others will eventually be applied to ourselves.
posted by pashdown at 6:44 AM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


yoink -- Does the President have any power at all?

I guess I don't know a whole lot about all the tools in the executive branch's toolkit. But it seems to me like if the President promises to do something -- especially something of such importance -- he better damn well find a way to do it. Call in favors, twist some arms, throw some bones -- just get it done. I don't think that's outside the President's capability.

And regardless of what Obama is or isn't capable of doing, he at least has the bully pulpit, which he's conspicuously refrained from using to its full advantage. Guantanamo could have -- should have -- been made a priority. Its symbolic significance for the country and the world can't be overstated. If it's Congress's fault that Guantanamo remains open, I would've wanted to see Obama publicly shaming Congress every goddamn day until it was closed.

That would be if he genuinely wanted to get it done. In light of these new developments -- and really, Obama's ongoing record on most things concerning the Terror War -- the Guantanamo issue looks less like a lack of ability and more like a lack of sincerity. On this issue he's either ineffectual or complicit -- and either way, "tried" doesn't fucking cut it.
posted by Misunderestimated at 7:32 AM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


There will be no prosecutions. AG Holder has said as much

You are incorrect there are two cases before a grand jury at the moment which may lead to multiple indictments of many individuals. Holder appointed a special prosecutor, John H. Durham, to investigate specific torture allegations . That investigation continues and while it has determined that no prosecution is warranted or possible in many cases it has reached the point where a Grand Jury is said to be looking closely at two specific cases. These are the deaths of Iraqi Maj. Gen. Abed Hamed Mowhoush and Manadel al-Jamadi. Holder did state that he wouldn't seek to prosecute CIA officers who acted in good faith. That statement is pretty meaningless though, whether the torturer was acting in good faith or not is entirely up to the DOJ.

These prosecutions are very difficult because physical evidence is limited, the scene of the crime is often unreachable, and the eye-witnesses are often difficult to track down or easily impeached. You have to be able to prove it to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt.
posted by humanfont at 11:05 AM on January 10, 2012


You are incorrect there are two cases before a grand jury at the moment which may lead to multiple indictments of many individuals.

Interesting. Call me when someone is actually prosecuted. Do you have any links I can read about the investigation into these two cases?
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 11:37 AM on January 10, 2012




if the President promises to do something -- especially something of such importance -- he better damn well find a way to do it. Call in favors, twist some arms, throw some bones -- just get it done.

If closing Guantanamo is really a singular priority for you, then I guess it's more or less rational to ask any officeholder to put all their political capital down on that and judging them on success or failure. But it seems to me you're either arguing for much less limited executive power, or are underestimating congressional authority to constrain the President's actions. While Obama does seem to have been ineffectual in closing Guantanamo, and however complicit he's been, I'd suggest that if you're focusing on *him* as the problem, you'll be in the same boat.
posted by weston at 12:19 PM on January 10, 2012


These prosecutions are very difficult because physical evidence is limited, the scene of the crime is often unreachable, and the eye-witnesses are often difficult to track down or easily impeached. You have to be able to prove it to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt.

Made even more difficult when the CIA destroys evidence related to the torture.

Which the DOJ recently announced it wouldn't prosecute.

So yeah, I could see why the DOJ would claim that it's hard to prosecute when there is no physical evidence. It's very convenient for everyone involved, from the CIA to the administration which has publicly announced we're looking forwards, not backwards.
posted by formless at 2:07 PM on January 10, 2012


To prosecute someone for the destruction of the tapes the prosecutor would need to identify the individuals involved in the destruction and demonstrate that the destruction was part of a conspiracy to cover up a crime or that the act was a crime. They would need to show this beyond a reasonable doubt to a jury. After over two years of investigation the special prosecutor couldn't build a strong enough case.
posted by humanfont at 2:37 PM on January 10, 2012


Guantanamo by the Numbers
posted by homunculus at 8:07 PM on January 10, 2012


Guantánamo: An Oral History. "January 11, 2012, marks the 10th anniversary of the arrival of the first detainees at the U.S. detention facility at Guantánamo Bay—the first of what would be nearly 800 prisoners to cycle through the camp. One hundred and seventy one are still there. Despite President Obama’s pledge, the facility remains open, a prisoner of fear-mongering and politics—and it continues to be a symbol of mistreatment and missteps in the prosecution of the war on terror. Vanity Fair has interviewed dozens of people associated with Guantánamo—lawyers, soldiers, diplomats, former detainees—in order to tell the story in their own words."
posted by homunculus at 1:47 PM on January 11, 2012




But it seems to me like if the President promises to do something -- especially something of such importance -- he better damn well find a way to do it. Call in favors, twist some arms, throw some bones -- just get it done. I don't think that's outside the President's capability.

Misunderestimated, ...

1) Many campaign promises are made that cannot be kept. That's not nice, "honorable", or perfect, but it is the way the world works.

2) Wanting something to happen doesn't guarantee it happens, even when you're the POTUS. See: approximately half of US history.
posted by IAmBroom at 11:05 AM on January 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


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