I’ve been thinking a lot about our current situation in the government. And the wars. And our current and seemingly never ending involvement with torture.
With the somewhat recent revelation that some suicides in 2006 were questionable at best, I’m reminded of the things happening in 2006 and why more investigations into the Bush administration are necessary.
Report Casts Doubt On Guantanamo Suicides
by The Associated Press [via NPR]
January 18, 2010
Three Guantanamo Bay detainees whose deaths were ruled a suicide in 2006 apparently were transported from their cells hours before their deaths to a secret site on the island, according to an article in Harper’s magazine.
The published account released Monday raises serious questions about whether the three detainees actually died by hanging themselves in their cells and suggests the U.S. government is covering up details of what precisely happened in the hours before the deaths.
I first read about the suicides through that NPR article. It says the suicides likely happened at a facility near the main Gitmo facility, referred to as “Camp No.” The justification for setting up these facilities and for using this kind of interrogation technique is apparently 9/11:
After the terror attacks on U.S. soil on Sept. 11, 2001, the CIA set up a number of so-called “black” sites around the world, where harsh interrogations of terrorism-era suspects took place.
The Harper’s article suggested such a site at Guantanamo Bay may have belonged to the CIA or to the U.S. military’s Joint Special Operations Command.
I remember 9/11. I remember how it was used as the justification for everything. I remember how people were tortured after 9/11 because they wouldn’t link 9/11 to Iraq and Saddam Hussein. I remember how the administration saw an opportunity with 9/11 and they went for it. When it didn’t work they tortured. They lied. They made up other claims that Hussein was buying yellowcake uranium from Niger.
Last time there was a whistleblower revealing evidence to hamper the Bush administration’s plans, I remember how they outed his CIA agent wife.
I remember how their link from 9/11 to Saddam Hussein, al-Libi gave bad information to authorities because he was tortured. And this information was revealed in a DIA report that Dick Cheney read. And he committed suicide. I wrote about it, in fact.
I’ll quote from myself, again. May 15, 2009:
Joe Wilson was sent by the CIA to investigate claims of Iraq trying to obtain yellowcake uranium from Africa:
Over the past months, however, the CIA has maintained that Wilson was chosen for the trip by senior officials in the Directorate of Operations counterproliferation division (CPD) — not by his wife — largely because he had handled a similar agency inquiry in Niger in 1999. On that trip, Plame, who worked in that division, had suggested him because he was planning to go there, according to Wilson and the Senate committee report.
Cheney had asked for more information on an intelligence report earlier on the same day questioning the link between Iraq and al Qaeda. In response to his request, the CIA sent Wilson to Africa, and an aide to Cheney testified that he had no idea his request would result in that trip.
So, he wanted information but didn’t think they’d send someone to get information?
The DIA in question had some very interesting and useful information. You’re definitely going to want to read this:
WASHINGTON — A government document raises doubts about claims that Al Qaeda members received training for biological and chemical weapons in Iraq, as Senate Democrats yesterday defended their push for a report on how the Bush administration handled prewar intelligence.
The document from February 2002 showed that the agency questioned the reliability of Al Qaeda senior military trainer Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi. He could not name any Iraqis involved in the effort or identify any chemical or biological materials or cite where the training took place, the report said.
The agency concluded that al-Libi probably misled the interrogators deliberately, and he recanted the statements in January, according to the document made public by Senator Carl Levin, top Democrat on the Senate Armed Services Committee.
The DIA report said that the links between al Qaeda and Iraq were probably not to be trusted and that al-Libi’s information was bad. This was made all the more strange when, in the midst of the Plame scandal, Karl Rove sent an email to the reporter Matthew Cooper, saying not to “get too far out” on Joe Wilson, the whistleblower, because the administration had information to discredit his findings and it was going to start declassifying things soon.
If they had this information, I don’t understand. This whole incident happened because Cheney asked the CIA for more information on the Iraq-AQ link and the Niger yellowcake. The CIA asked Joe Wilson to go to Niger because of his expertise on the subject, and Cheney says that the CIA misinterpreted his request and that he never wanted a trip to Niger. If there were information already to cast doubt on Wilson’s new information then why ask for any new information? It already existed!
Valerie Plame’s work consisted of monitoring WMDs going into and out of Iraq and Iran.