Guantanamo's Camp Delta: Even the president of the

United States can't seem to close it.



Estadao, Brazil

Obama Incapable of Ending 'Nightmare' of Guantanamo


"It's unclear what Obama can do while under virulent attack from a Republican opposition for wanting to get rid of this inherited nightmare, which continues to damage America's image like no other."




Translated By Cristiane Teston


April 27, 2011


Brazil - Estado - Original Article (Portuguese)

Detainess at the Guantanamo Bay prison await processing, Jan, 11, 2002. The latest data-bomb from WikiLeaks consists of previously classified documents with details on all 'detainees' ever to inhabit the now-infamous jail, located in the legal limbo of U.S.-occupied Cuba.


BBC NEWS VIDEO: Guantanamo files reveal how political correctness fostered extremism in Britain, Apr. 27, 00:06:02RealVideo

The more than 700 classified military documents newly-released by the Web site WikiLeaks and The New York Times about the terrorism suspects imprisoned at the U.S. base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is the fourth set of confidential U.S. government documents made public since last year. The new batch makes it clear that the incapacity of the largest global power to keep its secrets is compounded by its failure to identify who was among the suspected agents of its number one enemy - Osama Bin Laden and his terrorist network, al-Qaeda.


Their September 11, 2001 attacks on the country gave rise to the transformation of Guantanamo into a sui generis prison that's an affront to the rights enshrined in the home of the free and doesnt even constitute an effective instrument for combating the homicidal fundamentalist threat. We already knew of the routine violence, humiliation and lack of legal protection suffered by prisoners of the American enclave in Cuba. We also knew that lots of them, after been captured, were secretly sent to other countries to be tortured - and then to Guantanamo.


But no one knew of the surrealism that dominates in what has become an "enduring American institution," as The New York Times put it, referring to the fact that the President Barack Obama has failed to keep one of the biggest promises he made during his election campaign: to close what Washington gently calls a "detention center." The leaked documents are almost all "assessment reports" written between February 2002 and January 2009, therefore, during the Bush Administration. They are records of 759 of the 779 detainees who have passed through the prison over the period, including a 14-year-old boy and a senile 89-year-old man.


In regard to the at least 150 "enemy combatants," their captors were unable to establish any ties with al-Qaeda or Taliban. They ended up in Guantanamo for more implausible reasons, such as confusion about their names or accusations of terrorist acts by the actual perpetrators - without even investigating these opposing versions. But years passed before they were returned to their countries of origin. A Sudanese cameraman who worked for Al-Jazeera spent six years answering questions about training programs, equipment and the station's news coverage. He was released in 2008 (and returned to his job).


At Guantanamo, there remain 172 suspects. Most are considered "high risk." However, according to the disclosed documents, about 200 of the 600 already released were also considered high risk. Guilty or innocent, none could be taken to a criminal court because of the weakness of the evidence against them and the circumstances of their confessions. Even the best known of all, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, a confessed mastermind of September 11, will be tried by a military commission. The government has dropped the idea of putting him on trial in Manhattan, where the Twin Towers stood, and where he ordered aircraft, hijacked by a suicide team, to strike the buildings on that terrible morning.



Much of what appears in the prisoner "assessment reports" came from a single prisoner who implicated many of the others. In addition, members of the intelligence services of a dozen countries, all Arab or Muslim and except for Russia and China, were in Guantanamo to interrogate their citizens. It was found that what they said didn't necessarily match what they had told the Americans. What is believable is the portrait they paint of the degrading nature of everyday life at the base, the suffocating tension in the air, and vows of revenge and retaliation. It's difficult to imagine that this it has changed with the advent of the Obama government.



Die Zeit, Germany: Guantanamo: Obama Must 'Put an End to the Secrecy'
El Pais, Spain: Guantanamo is Incompatible with Mr. Obama's Principles
Dawn, Pakistan: WikiLeaks: Bin Laden's Son Stayed in Karachi


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It's unclear what Obama can do while under virulent attack from a Republican opposition for wanting to get rid of this inherited nightmare, which continues to damage America's image like no other. And for what? "The more we know about Guantanamo, the worse it seems as a way of confronting terrorism," says London's Guardian, which also published the documents. "It is a symbol of vengeance, not a system of justice." [translated quotes].



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[Posted by WORLDMEETS.US May 16, 4:09pm]


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