Friday, October 22, 2004

Bush's Willie Horton?

My sister sent me a news article, asking why it wasn't getting more airplay. She is absolutely correct that it is both important, and being ignored by everyone. I haven't even seen it in the political blogs. It seems that Guantanamo Bay could be turning into a radicalizing greenhouse:
A video given to NBC News by a contact in the region shows Mehsud at a hideout last week, playing to the camera. He urges fellow militants by radio to prepare for a suicide mission.

"Once you tie the bombs tightly to your bodies, then you should be ready for suicide. Once I give you the order, go and act," says Mehsud in the video.

Later, in a confrontation with Pakistani troops, one hostage and five of Mehsud’s men were killed.

The Mehsud story is more than a bit embarrassing for the United States. Until last March, Mehsud was in prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba — having been captured fighting with the Taliban in Afghanistan. However, a Pentagon review board decided to release him, ruling Mehsud was not a security threat. ...
Experts say it's possible Mehsud was always a hardcore militant and deceived his captors. "The other possibility is that the two years in captivity was itself a radicalizing experience," says terrorism expert Brian Jenkins. ...
The Pentagon says 156 Guantanamo detainees have been released after signing pledges to renounce violence. Mehsud is one of ten who returned to terrorism. Aspokesman admits the process for deciding which detainees to release is "imperfect."

So either the U.S. government screwed up in letting a terrorist go, or they created a new terrorist with the human rights violations in Guantanamo Bay. Are we safer, with Bush in the White House?

Update: NPR has taken up this story, with some alterations. Michele Norris said that over 200 detainees have been released, and the 10 that have returned to battle are only those that have been killed or recaptured. There is supposedly a Washington Post article about this, I'll try to find it later.

No comments: