An Interesting Day at Gitmo

While I actually think these two item are coincidental, note two things that happened on the Gitmo front yesterday.

First, contrary to the claims of Gitmo prosecutors made last month, no inmate ever got a copy of Inspire. Thus, the entire excuse for intervening in the attorney-client communications of Gitmo detainees turned out to be ungrounded.

“We caught it before it went into the camps,” Rear Adm. David B. Woods said, adding that Guantánamo prison camp staff intercepted a copy of the now defunct glossy English-language publication in a routine incoming mail scan.

The circumstances are bizarre because on Jan. 18, a war court prosecutor used the discover of the magazine to justify Woods’ new policy of having contractors scan the privileged legal mail of Military Commission attorneys. “There was material getting in, like Inspire magazine,” said Cmdr. Andrea Lockhart.

[snip]

Curiously, Woods said he did not know precisely when the episode happened.

But he said he was certain it did not occur during his nearly six-month tenure as prison camps commander.

Moreover, he said, the sender’s identity was on the package and that person was “counseled” against sending “that kind of information.” The sender was still having contact with the camps after what the admiral called an “attitude adjustment of what is informational contraband.”

Also yesterday, the guy who will replace the Woods, who put the new communications process into place (a judge has since revised them) was formally announced.

Rear Adm. (lower half) John W. Smith Jr. will be assigned as commander, Joint Task Force Guantanamo, U.S. Southern Command, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.  Smith is currently serving as deputy commander, Joint Interagency Task Force, U.S. Southern Command, Key West, Fla.

Here’s a biography for Smith.

Again, I think it’s just a coincidence both these stories came out yesterday. But it’s an interesting coincidence nevertheless.

One more Gitmo related story I hope to return to is this piece from Jeff Kaye, which provides details from the autopsy reports of two detainees alleged to commit suicide. One of the two, for example, was found in solitary confinement with his hands bound, yet the government claims he hanged himself.

Al Amri’s autopsy states that the “male civilian detainee” was “found hanging by his neck in his cell with a ligature made of braided strips of bed sheet. By report, similar fabric bound his hands loosely behind him.”

Note, these two deaths are separate from the three suspicious “suicide” deaths on June 9, 2006.

Like I said, I hope to return to Jeff’s piece, but in the meantime, do read it yourself.

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9 Responses to An Interesting Day at Gitmo

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bmaz RT @KagroX: How often does a dumb-ass with a gun accidentally 2nd Amendment a neighbor's house? Well, here's 77 from this year https://t.co
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emptywheel RT @jonjones: Interesting. Just saw a TSA emergency lockdown at RDU T2. Cell service knocked offline completely, then onto weak 2G. Was tha…
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bmaz @noahmccormack @Ali_Gharib This looks like, in fact it really is, a modern ripoff of the Man From UNCLE
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JimWhiteGNV Who's living in the crosstie post on our wash rack? http://t.co/67Ms00knwj
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emptywheel The “Accidental” Phone Dragnet Violations IDed in 2009 Were Actually Retained Stellar Wind Features https://t.co/K60o1ZnQpU
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bmaz @trevortimm Weird. I did notice he turned back into an orange egg right before disappearing. Just as when he started. Full circle I guess.
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bmaz @benwizner This actually makes sense. Chinese factories are stable, so @realDonaldTrump has them do it. He couldn't keep his own out of BK.
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bmaz @emptywheel @joshgerstein Yep, but I'm with Josh, I would have guessed even less.
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emptywheel Even under Stellar Wind, NSA had decided contact chaining only useful to 2 hops. So O's decision to limit it to that was...not a concession.
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emptywheel @joshgerstein To put it another way: 98.8% of people investigated bc of Stellar Wind were innocent.
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emptywheel IG Report appears to be hiding role of CTC lawyers, just as torture report but not other reports did. http://t.co/1icn7M78i5 @Krhawkins5
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