17 February, 2015

To Live and Die in Gitmo

To Live and Die in Gitmo:

Ali Abdullah Ahmed (693) was a Yemeni who, according to his Department of Defense record,
was “a street vendor who sold clothing…and was prompted to travel to
Pakistan to receive [a religious] education upon hearing God’s calling.”
He was captured at a safe house in Faisalabad that was alleged to be
under the control of Abu Zubaydah, then believed to be one of Osama bin
Laden’s top officers. Branded by the Pentagon as “a mid-to-high-level
Al-Qaeda” operative, Ahmed arrived in Cuba on June 19, 2002. Later,
government investigators realized there was “no credible information”
tying him to terrorism. But this wasn’t the Palookaville slammer: If you
tell the world, as the Pentagon did, that your island prison is home to
“the worst of the worst,” you won’t want to advertise your errors and
hyperboles. So they kept Ahmed. [...]

Not everybody at the Pentagon agrees. A highly placed source in the Department of Defense who deals with detainees’ affairs, and who asked to remain anonymous because he is not permitted to speak to the media without receiving prior clearance, wrote to me in an email: “After reviewing the information concerning the three deaths at Camp Delta on June 9, 2006, it is painfully apparent the personnel involved in fact created an illusion of an investigation. When you consider the missing documents, the lack of key interviews, and the questionable evidence found on the bodies, it is blatantly obvious there was something that occurred that night that is not documented.”