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The Guantanamo Bay Diary -- We Are Now Losing the War on Terror

By Gary Starr for The Neville Awards
Originally Posted Jan. 23, 2009

Developing...this will be an ongoing feature here at The Neville Awards.

Neville Update: June 11, 2009 -- Obama Wants Miranda Rights for Terrorists

By Gary Starr for The Neville Awards

Our Fraudinator-in-Chief and the terrorist-loving attorney general Eric Holder have just taken the next step towards surrender in the War on Terror by quietly ordering captured terrorists to be read their miranda rights in the field. The administration is not consulting Congress on this.

This means that battlefields must become crime scenes where evidence is gathered to support a case against the captured fighter.

The terrorists will immediately lawyer up and the lawyers from the ACLU will be standing in line to take their cases and advising them not to talk to the FBI.

The security nightmare both on the battlefield and the city where terrorist trials are held will be a jihadist wet dream.

Our newly minted Muslim sympathizing president is deliberately and systematically dismantling our security infrastructure and making it ever harder for us to defend ourselves. Obama is acting like a lawyer for the enemy. We have said it before and we will say it again...Obama's actions are a violation of the presidential oath of office and are approaching treason.

This new policy is worse than a pre-9/11 mentality of treating terrorism as a law enforcement issue. This sets up the possibility of releasing terrorists on legal technicalities or getting outright acquittals from sympathetic juries.

By the way, the first of the Gitmo detainees, Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani, is now in New York to stand trial for his role in the Aug. 7, 1998 bombing of the U.S. Embassies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Nairobi, Kenya. Charges include conspiring with Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda to kill Americans, and separate charges of murder for each of the 224 people killed embassy bombings.

This will be a circus in the manner of the 20th 9/11 hijacker Zacarias Moussawai trial, costing the U.S. Taxpayer millions taking years to adjuducate.

From Stephen F. Hayes on June 10, 2009 for The Weekly Standard:

Miranda Rights for Terrorists

When 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammad was captured on March 1, 2003, he was not cooperative. "I'll talk to you guys after I get to New York and see my lawyer," he said, according to former CIA Director George Tenet.

Of course, KSM did not get a lawyer until months later, after his interrogation was completed, and Tenet says that the information the CIA obtained from him disrupted plots and saved lives. "I believe none of these successes would have happened if we had had to treat KSM like a white-collar criminal - read him his Miranda rights and get him a lawyer who surely would have insisted that his client simply shut up," Tenet wrote in his memoirs.

If Tenet is right, it's a good thing KSM was captured before Barack Obama became president. For, the Obama Justice Department has quietly ordered FBI agents to read Miranda rights to high value detainees captured and held at U.S. detention facilities in Afghanistan, according a senior Republican on the House Intelligence Committee. "The administration has decided to change the focus to law enforcement. Here's the problem. You have foreign fighters who are targeting US troops today - foreign fighters who go to another country to kill Americans. We capture them…and they're reading them their rights - Mirandizing these foreign fighters," says Representative Mike Rogers, who recently met with military, intelligence and law enforcement officials on a fact-finding trip to Afghanistan.

Rogers, a former FBI special agent and U.S. Army officer, says the Obama administration has not briefed Congress on the new policy. "I was a little surprised to find it taking place when I showed up because we hadn't been briefed on it, I didn't know about it. We're still trying to get to the bottom of it, but it is clearly a part of this new global justice initiative."

That effort, which elevates the FBI and other law enforcement agencies and diminishes the role of intelligence and military officials, was described in a May 28 Los Angeles Times article.

The FBI and Justice Department plan to significantly expand their role in global counter-terrorism operations, part of a U.S. policy shift that will replace a CIA-dominated system of clandestine detentions and interrogations with one built around transparent investigations and prosecutions.

Under the "global justice" initiative, which has been in the works for several months, FBI agents will have a central role in overseas counter-terrorism cases. They will expand their questioning of suspects and evidence-gathering to try to ensure that criminal prosecutions are an option, officials familiar with the effort said.

Thanks in part to the popularity of law and order television shows and movies, many Americans are familiar with the Miranda warning - so named because of the landmark 1966 Supreme Court case Miranda vs. Arizona that required police officers and other law enforcement officials to advise suspected criminals of their rights.

You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to speak to an attorney, and to have an attorney present during any questioning. If you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be provided for you at government expense.

A lawyer who has worked on detainee issues for the U.S. government offers this rationale for the Obama administration's approach. "If the US is mirandizing certain suspects in Afghanistan, they're likely doing it to ensure that the treatment of the suspect and the collection of information is done in a manner that will ensure the suspect can be prosecuted in a US court at some point in the future."

But Republicans on Capitol Hill are not happy. "When they mirandize a suspect, the first thing they do is warn them that they have the 'right to remain silent,'" says Representative Pete Hoekstra, the ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee. "It would seem the last thing we want is Khalid Sheikh Mohammed or any other al-Qaeda terrorist to remain silent. Our focus should be on preventing the next attack, not giving radical jihadists a new tactic to resist interrogation--lawyering up."

According to Mike Rogers, that is precisely what some human rights organizations are advising detainees to do. "The International Red Cross, when they go into these detention facilities, has now started telling people - 'Take the option. You want a lawyer.'"

Rogers adds: "The problem is you take that guy at three in the morning off of a compound right outside of Kabul where he's building bomb materials to kill US soldiers, and read him his rights by four, and the Red Cross is saying take the lawyer - you have now created quite a confusion amongst the FBI, the CIA and the United States military. And confusion is the last thing you want in a combat zone."

One thing is clear, though. A detainee who is not talking cannot provide information about future attacks. Had Khalid Sheikh Mohammad had a lawyer, Tenet wrote, "I am confident that we would have obtained none of the information he had in his head about imminent threats against the American people."

Neville Update: May 16, 2009 -- Obama Leaving Terrorists at Gitmo for the Time Being -- Re-Opening Military Tribunals

All Democrats in favor of standing with your president to trash Bush's Guantanamo terrorist detension program, shout aye! "Aye!" All Democrats in favor of doing what it takes to close Guantanamo, shout aye! ............(crickets chirping)

The reality of NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard) has hit the Gitmo controversy and the Democrats with full force.

Apparently these Democratic "terror warriors" don't want them.

"We're not going to bring al Qaeda to Big Sky Country. No way, not on my watch," declared Montana Sen. Max Baucus. "I wouldn't want them and I wouldn't take them," insisted Nebraska's Ben Nelson. Not Quantico, piped up Virginia's Mark Warner. After all, it "is in a very populated area in the greater capital region." Look, "Alcatraz is a national park and a tourist attraction, not a functioning prison" for terrorists, said the office of California's Dianne Feinstein.

On day two of his presidency, Ol' Blood 'n Guts Barack Obama issued an executive order to shut down, within one year, the Gitmo prison that still houses 241 detainees. Four months later, he may be about to be handed his first defeat of a major campaign promise, and by his own party. Faced with the actual politics of bringing terrorists to U.S. soil, congressional Democrats are running for the exits.

Public outrage has already inspired officials in Louisiana, California, Mississippi, Missouri and Virginia to introduce or pass resolutions prohibiting the Administration from sending the terrorists to their communities. Playing off this, the House GOP introduced legislation that would prohibit the administration from transferring Gitmo detainees to a state without permission from that state's governor and legislature. They then dared Democrats to vote against this "Keep Terrorists Out of America Act."

The Dems caved. Just like when they were challenged by the GOP to eliminate the war budget The House instead yanked the $81 million Mr. Obama wants as a down payment to begin the process of shuttering the prison. Worried that even this didn't provide enough cover, they also inserted language barring detainee transfers to the U.S. until at least October. Tough guys all.

As with Obama's epiphany that releasing the "torture pics" would not be good for the national security Obama has decided that the civilian courts are largely unsuited for the realities of the war on terror. He has now decided to preserve the military tribunal process that will be identical in every material way to the one favored by Dick Cheney -- and which, contrary to the narrative that Democrats disseminated for years, will be the fairest and most open war-crimes trials in U.S. history.

Of course Obama still showed his affinity for his homeboys in the Gitmo lockup. As a sop to the outraged left wing of his party he changed some of the rules:
  • Restrictions on hearsay evidence that can be used in court against the detainees.
  • A ban on all evidence obtained through cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment. This would include statements given from detainees who were subjected to waterboarding, a form of simulated drowning.
  • Giving detainees greater leeway in choosing their own military counsel.
  • Protecting detainees who refuse to testify from legal sanctions or other court prejudices.
In other words, the effective interrogation techniques for obtaining evidence against a terrorist will be inadmissable, a terrorist cannot be compelled to testify and can waste the court's time hiring and firing lawyers. This sounds like a civilian court to us.

Guantanamo now joins the growing list of items in the security toolbox that Ol' Blood 'n Guts Obama once criticized as contrary to American values but has since discovered are now consistent with the national security. Wiretapping, renditions, military tribunals, Gitmo -- it turns out the Bush Administration weren't a bunch of knuckledragging cavemen but rather tough defenders against terrorism.

Please keep all sharp objects away from the editors of the NY Times and the Washington Post, Katie Couric, Charles Gibson, Brian Williams, Chris Matthews, Kieth Olbermann, the ACLU, Code Pink and George Soros. Your savior has let you down again.

Neville Update: March 28, 2009 -- Obama Considering Welfare for Freed Gitmo Terrorists

From the Associated Press, a partial account of National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair’s first press conference today:

During his news conference, Blair also said the Obama administration is still wrestling with what to do with the remaining 240 detainees at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, which the president has ordered closed.

That would happen when they can't be returned to their home countries, because the governments either won't take them or the U.S. fears they will be abused or tortured. That is the case with 17 Uighurs (WEE'-gurz), Chinese Muslim separatists who were cleared for release from the jail long ago. The U.S. can't find a country willing to take them, and it will not turn them over to China.

“We can't put them out on the street,” he said.

"If we are to release them in the United States, we need some sort of assistance for them to start a new life," said Blair

Some of the detainees, deemed non-threatening, may be released into the United States as free men, Blair confirmed.

Blair said the former prisoners would have [to] get some sort of assistance to start their new lives in the United States.

Four points:
  1. Does this mean that the Obama administration is planning on giving some freed Guantanamo detainees a welfare check? In other words paying terrorists to live here.
  2. The Uighur detainees are cited, over and over again, as the types of detainees who can be safely released into the U.S. This is insane.

    They have received terrorist training in the al Qaeda/Taliban stronghold of Tora Bora, and have admitted that they were trained by two known terrorists. The group that trained them threatened to attack the Olympic Games in China last year.
  3. The AP says the United States can’t find a country to take the Uighurs, other than China, which may treat them "harshly".
  4. Is the Obama administration considering paying other Guantanamo detainees to live in the U.S. as well?

The Obama Administration's principle concern seems to be the comfort of Gitmo terrorists Gitmo on American soil rather than the national security of the United States. As usual.

Neville Update: March 14, 2009 -- More fun and games at Club Gitmo

The five terrorists at Guantánamo Bay charged with planning the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks have filed a document with the military commission at the United States naval base there expressing pride at their accomplishment and accepting full responsibility for the killing of nearly 3,000 people.

In their filing, the men describe the planning of the Sept. 11 attacks and the killing of Americans as a model of Islamic action, and say the American government's accusations cause them no shame, according to the excerpts read by the government official.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Walid Bin Attash, Ramzi Bin al Shib, Ali Abdul Aziz Ali (why does he need two Ali's i his name?, Mustafa Ahmed al Hawsawi filed the following on March 1, 2009 (excerpted here):

To us they are badges of honor whicj we carry with pride…Killing and fighting and destroying you and terrorizing you, responding back to your attacks, all are considered to be great legitimate duty in our religion.

Our religion is a religion of fear and terror to the enemies of God: The Jews, Christians and pagans...we are terrorists to the bone. Many thanks to god.

This is the argument for keeping Gitmo open. Trials in open court with ACLU lawyers would not work. They would become a propaganda circus and a security nightmare.

These terrorists are self-declared enemies of the United States. It is insanity to call them criminals. They should be treated as we treated German, Japanese and Italian World War II POW's, held for the duration of the war without trial.

By the way two more issues:
  • A terrorist released from Gitmo in 2007, Mullah Abdul Rassoul, has just resurfaced as a top Taliban officer in southern Afghanistan
  • As of March 13, 2009 according to the Eric Holder's Justice Department. the phrase Enemy Combatant is no longer used in official government documents

Neville Update: Feb 21, 2009 -- The One Month Obama Report Card on Foreign Policy
  • His first call to any head of state as president was to Mahmoud Abbas, leader of Fatah party in the Palestinian territory.
  • His first one on one interview with any news organization was with Al Arabia television.
  • He ordered Guantanamo Bay closed and all military trials of detainees halted.
  • He ordered all overseas CIA interrogation centers closed.
  • He withdrew all charges against the masterminds behind the USS Cole and 9/11.
  • He appointed an Attorney General and Justice Department officials on record as opposed to the use of "enhanced" interrogation techniques in terror investigations.
  • By executive order Obama has allocated $20.3 million in "post-conflict humanitarian aid" to "Palestinian refugees and conflict victims in Hamas-controlled Gaza. The additional funds bring to $60 million U.S. aid commitments in Gaza.
  • Obama has signed an executive order presidential determination which allows hundreds of thousands of Palestinians with ties to Hamas to resettle in the United States
  • Responding to signs of Obama's weakness on Terror Enforcement The Associated Press reported, on February 8th, that Yemen, which boasts of having a "truce" with al Qaeda, "released 170 men it had arrested on suspicion of having ties to al Qaeda." The announcement came "two weeks after al Qaeda announced that Yemen had become the base of its activities for the whole Arabian Peninsula."
  • Responding to signs of Obama's weakness on Terror Enforcement Pakistan, a supposed ally, has just concluded a deal with the Taliban ceding to its control an area on the Afghan/Paki border which its troops had, unsuccessfully, tried to capture. The Taliban now has the same deal it had in Afghanistan - a protected sanctuary from which to launch raids on the West.
  • By executive order Obama has decided to end sanctions against Iran in the face of Iran's continued development of nuclear technology and Iran's continued support of Hamas and Hezbollah.
  • Iran has launched it's first satellite nicknamed "Hope". Where's the change? Iran can now easily launch nuclear-tipped missles into Europe and Asia.
  • Obama has decided on a new U.S. ambassador to Syria and is expected to lift sanctions on it's military and energy programs. Syria is charged with aiding Al Qaida in Iraq and secretly building a nuclear reactor with North Korean assistance.
  • Canada and Brussels have bristled over the protectionist "Buy American" slant of the new Stimulus package.
  • Kyrgestan is kicking the United States Air Force out of our main re-supply base to Aghanistan. The Russians are kicking in $200 million in aid and have expressssed interest re-engaging in Afghanistan so they need the base now.
  • After Obama offered to help India in it's "negotiations" with Pakistan over Kashmir Obama was told he was "barking up the wrong tree."
  • California Senator Diane Feinstein recently blew the cover on a secret CIA program, revealing that Predator attack drones, which we use to attack Taliban and al-Qeada safe havens, and recently killed 27 al-Qaeda terrorists in Pakistan originated in that country, stating , "as I understand it..[the flights] are flown out of a Pakistani base." This policy that Pakistan has publically protested, provided Pakistan with plausible deniability. Feinstein sits on the Senate Intelligence Committee. Way to go Dianne!!
  • Obama is ready to look at re-modeling our missile defense plans to include Moscow in a concession to Russian opposition. The Kremlin has been pressing Washington to give ground on the proposed missile shield in exchange for Russia helping supply the U.S.-led military campaign in Afghanistan.

Neville Update: Feb 9, 2009 -- Charges for USS Cole Bomber dropped.

In a legal move by the senior military judge overseeing terror trials at Guantanamo Bay, the "Hon." Susan J. Crawford, in compliance with upholding Fraudinator-in-Chief Obama's Guantanamo executive order to halt court proceedings at Gitmo, the military charges against suspected Al Qaeda bomber Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri heve been dropped.

This is an absolute insult to the sailors killed on the USS Cole, to the country, and one more indication that we are leaving the field to the enemy. Obama is a disgrace and bin-Laden is doing the "U.S. is a paper tiger" dance of joy.

Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell said that the dismissal was made "without prejudice," meaning the U.S. government may continue to prosecute him at a later date. For now Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri remains in custody, but we at Neville are not exactly holding our breath waiting for a new trial.

The al-Nashiri trial was the last one still ongoing because Col. James L. Pohl, the chief judge of the Guantanamo Bay War Crimes court, refused to abide by the executive orders. He should be given a medal.

Obama met with family members of victims of the Sept. 11 and Cole attacks the day after the suspension of the trial was announced...a true "profile in courage".

Neville Update: Jan. 31, 2009 -- If you want to see a preview of what trials in open court for the Gitmo terrorists will look like consider the following:

The so-called "20th hijacker", Zacarias Moussaoui, currently spending life in prison for his role in the 9/11 plot, has decided to re-open his case. According to his lawyer Justin Antonipalli, the Feds failed to turn over evidence that could help in his defense.

Per the Wall St. Journal Antonipalli is urging a three judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to throw out the plea and order a new trial.

It took four years to get this scumbag convicted. Multiply this by 245 cases (the number of scumbags still in Gitmo) in U.S. court and you have an ongoing circus that will make the ACLU attorney's rich, make a mockery of the justice system, and make a mockery of the War on Terror.

Way to go Barack!! Our World Citizen Hope 'n Change Prez, "Blood and Guts" Obama strikes again.

As we predicted in our Election Wrap article and our Jan. 20, 2009 - U.S. Losing War on Terror article our Fraudinator-in-Chief began his third day in office by issuing three executive orders and one presidential memorandum:
  • He will close Gitmo within one year.
  • All military tribunals are on hold
  • All coerced interrogation is off the table.
  • A review of the detention of Ali Saleh Kahlah al-Marri
Of course, no one has really figured out where to stick the approximately 250 "disaffected Muslim youts" left at Gitmo. If we send the them to Europe or the Middle East there is every possibility they will be released and thrown back into terrorist circulation. At least 60 released terrorists from Gitmo have either been killed or captured again after release.

This from Gateway Pundit, Friday, January 23, 2009 (

A former Gitmo detainee has become a leader of Al-Qaeda's Yemeni branch. Said Ali al-Shihri passed through a Saudi rehabilitation program for former jihadists before resurfacing with Al Qaeda in Yemen. Al-Shihri, is suspected of involvement in the deadly bombing of the US embassy in Yemen's capital, Sana, in September.

We like to refer to Mr. Ali al-Shihri by his nom de plume: Ramzi al Kaboomi...

If the "disaffected Muslim youts" are brought here they immediately acquire rights under the Constitution and an ACLU lawyer. If they are in the general prison population they will either be killed or they will agitate for Jihad among the black prisoners. Any trials in open court will become a circus. Can you imagine the number of hung juries if there are Muslim jurors?

But, who cares? Barack's got it dialed in. He set up a commission. Per Barack we are no longer fighting a War on Terror...we have a Struggle Against Extremism.

Let's put the "disaffected Muslim youts" in San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsome's halfway houses for illegal aliens. Our "all-important moral standing" in the world is magically restored...the Europeans love us again (and isn't that what's really important?)...we at Neville feel safer already.

The text of the three executive orders:

Executive Order Regarding Guantanamo Bay Detainees

Executive order requires closure of the U.S. detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, no later than one year from the date of the order. Closure of the facility is the ultimate goal but not the first step. The order establishes a review process with the goal of disposing of the detainees before closing the facility.

The order sets up an immediate review to determine whether it is possible to transfer detainees to third countries, consistent with national security. If transfer is not approved, a second review will determine whether prosecution is possible and in what forum. The preference is for prosecution in Article III courts or under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), but military commissions, perhaps with revised authorities, would remain an option. If there are detainees who cannot be transferred or prosecuted, the review will examine the lawful options for dealing with them. The attorney general will coordinate the review and the secretaries of defense, state and homeland security as well as the (director of national intelligence) and the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff will participate.

The executive order directs the secretary of state to seek international cooperation aimed at achieving the transfers of detainees.

The order directs the secretary of defense to halt military commission proceedings pending the results of the review.

Finally, the executive order requires that conditions of confinement at Guantanamo, until its closure, comply with Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions and all other applicable laws.

Executive Order Regarding Detainee Policy

Executive order creates a special task force, co-chaired by the attorney general and the secretary of defense, to conduct a review of detainee policy going forward. The group will consider policy options for apprehension, detention, trial, transfer or release of detainees. Other task force participants include the secretary of state, the secretary of homeland security, the director of national intelligence, the director of the Central Intelligence Agency and the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. The special task force must submit its report to the president within 180 days.

Executive Order Regarding Interrogation

Executive order revokes Executive Order 13440 that interpreted Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions. It requires that all interrogations of detainees in armed conflict, by any government agency, follow the Army Field Manual interrogation guidelines. The order also prohibits reliance on any department of justice or other legal advice concerning interrogation that was issued between September 11, 2001, and January 20, 2009.

The order requires all departments and agencies to provide the (International Committee of the Red Cross) access to detainees in a manner consistent with department of defense regulations and practice. It also orders the CIA to close all existing detention facilities and prohibits it from operating detention facilities in the future.

Finally, the order creates a special task force with two missions. The task force will conduct a review of the Army Field Manual interrogation guidelines to determine whether different or additional guidance is necessary for the CIA. It will also look at rendition and other policies for transferring individuals to third countries to be sure that our policies and practices comply with all obligations and are sufficient to ensure that individuals do not face torture and cruel treatment if transferred. This task force will be led by the attorney general with the secretary of defense and the director of national intelligence as co-vice chairs.

Presidential Memorandum on Review of the Detention of al-Marri

The president instructed the attorney general, the secretaries of defense, state and homeland security, and the director of national intelligence to conduct a review of the status of the detainee Ali Saleh Kahlah al-Marri who is currently held at the Naval Brig in Charleston, S.C. This will ensure the same kind of legal and factual review is undertaken of the al-Marri case that is being undertaken of the Guantanamo cases.
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