Monday, November 28

Why the US holds detainees outside the US

At the end of World War II there were almost four hundred thousand German soldiers interned in POW camps in the US. A portion of the German’s captured by the allied forces were the responsibility of the US to hold until the conclusion of the war. To do this, troop ships were filled with prisoners as they were emptied of soldiers in Europe. After arrival in the US, they were put on trains for long trips to Middle America where their POW camps were located.

Housing prisoners of war in the US is nothing new, so why aren’t we housing prisoners of war from Afghanistan and Iraq in the US? Here are a couple of likely reasons why.

First, none of those being held meet the definition of a prisoner of war, other than some of the Iraqi Government Officials now on Trial. Most people are familiar with the existence of the Geneva Convention, but few actually understand the basic principles of it. Not only does the Convention have requirements on how prisoners are to be treated, but also have requirements on the behavior of “soldiers” in order to receive treatment in accordance with the Convention.

In addition to those caught physically fighting the US, there are also those who have been detained, accused of being support staff for terrorists. These people are as dangerous, if not more dangerous than the foot soldiers that they recruit and support. These people recruit those who conduct suicide attacks. They collect and then provide funding to terrorists as well as arrange for training, documentation and transportation. The only crime that many of these people have committed is limited to attending a training camp or even attempting to attend a training camp but failing to make it all the way to the camps in Afghanistan. Look at the “Portland Six” that were detained (and now jailed) for attempting to get to Afghanistan to fight the US.

Now the US has done the sensible thing by imprisoning these people whether caught on the battlefield, or caught as the result of finding information in a laptop in a computer in a terrorist hideout somewhere in the world. They are going after all the links in the terror chain and that is a problem because at some point the chain does cross into regular society and those links sometimes look just like yours and mine.

It seems that there are many out there who have no clue that there are people out there that would kill them if they could. Many terrorists are destined to only one act of violence, a suicide terrorist attack. Until that time, their main task is to train for their one event and to avoid capture.

For those in the supporting roles, their job is to accomplish their goals while blending in with the enemy, creating reasonable doubt just in case their true intentions are questioned or if they are ever detained or arrested. If any of these people are caught, the few pieces of incriminating evidence get lost in the static of neighbors commenting on what nice people they are, employers noting what good employees they are and nobody remembering any sign of radicalism. Then there are those who are not active in fighting but if asked will assist those who are. Finally there is the strange silence from the Muslim community in general. They are the ones best able to identify those who might be a threat, yet they don’t notify the authorities as if doing so might betray another Muslim. This thinking ignores the betrayal all the terror supporters are committing against other Muslims.

The game is not over if the terrorists happened to be caught either. This is where they call in their ‘useful idiots’ to gum up the Justice System.

A couple of terrorists have worked their way through the courts. John Walker Lindh The American Taliban, Richard Reid the ‘Shoe Bomber’, and Zacarias Moussaoui, who after two and a half years of turning his trial into a circus, finally got bored and admitted that he was indeed a terrorist and declared his allegiance to Osama Bin Laden. In Moussaoui’s case, the German Government has evidence against him but refuses to give it to the US Government unless they remove the threat of the death penalty for Moussaoui. The French apparently also gave information with the understanding (so they say) that he would not receive the death penalty as a result of their cooperation. This just proves that the terrorists were not stupid to choose Europe as a base of operations. Where would Richard Reid be now if his flight was headed to France from the US? Most likely in a French jail with a much shorter jail sentence. If they Europeans are so concerned about these people not facing the death penalty, then they should do a better job of preventing them from traveling to the US and arrest them before they can get set their feet on US soil.

Then there’s Jose Padilla, the ‘Dirty Bomber.’ Jose has been held for three years as an enemy combatant, despite being an American Citizen. Only now is he being charged with conspiracy to murder Americans. For some reason, he has not been charged with treason. He is also not being charged concerning the original reason why he was detained, which was planning to conduct a radiological ‘dirty bomb’ attack on the US.

He was not charged with that crime as the Government suspects that the evidence collected concerning that crime would not be admissible in court. However, that does not mean that he’s not guilty of that crime. It just illustrates the difficulty in fighting the war on terror both in the field and in the courts and how difficult it is to move suspects from one arena to the other.

Then we have Ahmed Omar Abu Ali, a terrorist recently convicted of planning to kill President Bush and being a member of al-Qaeda. Ahmed had claimed that he was tortured into confessing, however, the jury did not believe that he was tortured, especially after viewing his confession tape.

It seems that there is a standard practice of the Muslim community to express outrage at the news of any Muslim being arrested on terror charges. Noting useful facts that it is ‘against Islam’ to kill civilians while ignoring the facts of why these people were detained in the first place.

Take a look at the website If you spend a couple minutes reading the stories of the prisoners, you will quickly realize that all these guys apparently ended up in Gitmo as the result of some sort of injustice. Some have no story, just a mailing address so that you can send them a postcard or whatever. I imagine that their stories don’t help their cause. At least David Hicks doesn’t hide much in his story. Then there are those that we are sure are terrorists who aren’t even mentioned, like Abdullah Mehsud (Noor Alam), who after his release from Gitmo went off and kidnapped two Chinese Engineers. Then there is Abdul Ghaffar who was released from Gitmo and later killed back in Afghanistan. His summary in Cage prisoners only mentions that he was “He was released and later killed”. So at least some of those released from Gitmo were terrorists. Unfortunately, this was only proven after their release through their future actions.

One of the most amazing episodes of the London subway bombing involved the capture of one of the bombers, Ramzi Mohammed. There the man was, standing in his underwear yelling out that he has rights. You can bet that there is no shortage of people that will ensure that the UK does not infringe on his rights. This is kind of silly since he had planned on blowing his rights all over the inside of a subway car.

Ramzi is a perfect example of how the terrorists will demand that ‘we’ play by our rules as they use our rules against us. Ramzi Mohammed managed to get into a position using his right to privacy where he could have killed many people. Unfortunately for him, his backpack didn’t explode. He just happened to be lucky enough that a quick-acting policeman didn’t have the opportunity to gun him down on the spot. Sure, he is not in the news at the moment, but give the moonbats some time. They will warm up to him. After all, if the leader of the crips can be reformed, why shouldn’t this guy be given another chance.

Unfortunately for other Muslims, the UK is now deporting people that they no longer want in their country, including those with the weakest of links to any terror entities. But enter the rights groups who claim that many of these people cannot be returned to their home countries because they are wanted there and those countries might not respect their human rights, forcing them to flee to the UK in the first place. These groups also sue to ensure that these deportees without a destination are not detained either, in an attempt to leave the person’s status as before, which does nothing to reduce the UK risk of another terror attack.

In the aftermath of the first London subway bombing, the Muslim community went into autopilot denying that the Muslims identified could not have been involved. A website even explains how these guys were ‘duped’ into carrying the explosives. (How the Government Staged the London Bombings in Ten Easy Steps) Too bad for them at least one of the terrorists left a video claiming responsibility for the attack. The reaction from the Muslim community was one of utter shock. That comes from living in utter denial. At least there is the fact that terrorist attacks did occur. Now just imagine if we had arrested Mohamed Atta on September first? At what point does a person become an imminent threat?

Atta’s lawyer would surely claim something like this:

There’s no evidence that terrorism was contemplated or being planned by any particular person at any particular time or in any particular place.”

Then there would be the Muslim Community that would express outrage as well as the usual crowd of sympathizers including members of the press that would claim that he and those arrested with him were singled out because they were Muslims.

Then there would also be cries of persecution and claims that there was no proof that Mr. Atta had done anything wrong and that all of his activities have more plausible, non-threatening alternative explanations. After all, most of these people are nobodies. There is nothing special about them and they live lives almost exactly like hundreds of thousands of people like them (with minor differences.) Their greatest asset to those that wish us harm is that a ‘nobody’ can kill much more effectively than a known criminal. After all the only real evidence might just be what is locked inside their brains.

So what happens once we catch these terrorists?

Take a look at what is going on in the Guantanamo Bay Detention Center, Gitmo. There is a never-ending stream of visitors from Congress, the International Red Cross and lawyers representing those who are held there. Then you also have those demanding to get access, such as the investigators from the UN and EU. It is not good enough to just be allowed to visit the prison; they are also demanding to be able to talk to the prisoners, in private.

As one UN investigator stated, the US MUST be hiding something at GITMO because they will not permit them to talk to the Prisoners in private. But he forgets to mention that the US already permits the International Red Cross to talk to prisoners in private. This is despite the fact that they have leaked information to the press in violation of their rules that permit these visits in the first place. (Strange that the UN has no interest in visiting the rest of Cuba to talk to Cuba’s prisoners, in private.)

The International Red Cross, IRC, acts as observers when it comes to Prisoners of War. There are no POWS in Gitmo. But the US is granting them access anyway to show that they are treating them in line with the Geneva Conventions. Of course the IRC does not like what is going and they are pushing to have these criminals granted full rights under the Geneva Convention even though al-Qaeda violates the rules of war by targeting civilians. Did they point out to the prisoners that they broke the rules of the Geneva Convention and that the US has no requirement to treat them as they are currently? I suspect not. Lets not forget that they have also targeted the UN, as was done in Iraq.

Now these are the 500 worst people that the US has found other than the really big fish that the US has confined in unknown locations around the world. These big fish are the ones who have declared jihad against the US. They are the ones who issue orders for their followers. They collect and distribute funds and hand out missions and targets. There is very good reason to keep their locations unknown and even in some cases prevent or delay news of their capture. Does the US get any slack in detaining these criminals? Not lately as the European Union has been creating such a stink about the possibility of secret CIA prisons somewhere in the EU. No wonder the US is acting like it has no friends in the war on terror. Look at how our friends are acting. Perhaps if the US got some cooperation, then its actions could be a little less extreme. It is teaching the US a lesson though, that perhaps Guantanamo is not such a bad place after all, compared to hiding them somewhere else. At least there you can control the Lawyers, plane spotters, International Officials, and the whole mess that goes with it. Right now, I am waiting for the first pictures to be published of these secret prisons as well as a location so that I can check it out in Google.
ACLU to Sue the CIA - Stop the ACLU

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