A Look At Gitmo

A Look At Gitmo

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Guantanamo Bay
Is there room for ethics in the modern Jihad?

September 11th 2001, four planes were hijacked by terrorists after they left the airport. The terrorists on board had 4 targets that they wanted to use their newly acquired flying bombs to hit high rated targets in the United States. 3 of those planes 4 planes hit there targets taking down both world trade center buildings and the third striking the pentagon. These events claimed the lives of over 3,000 Americans and brought America into a type of war that no nation has ever been able to stand against the modern jihad. In the immediate aftermath of the attacks the United States military activated to full strength and began to prepare for the war that would inevitably follow. The first nation targeted for an overt attack was the weak regime in Afghanistan. The Taliban was actually installed into power and armed by the United States during the "cold war" to fight the USSR. The Demons of the cold war had come back to haunt us, and it was the regimes that we had anointed that had risen and turned on their old masters with a hatred that we had fueled and with the weapons that we gave them.
America had officially entered into the Jihad with an enemy that it had trained, and trained well. This enemy did not operate like the enemies that we are used to fighting. There is no one organization in this war instead we are fighting against hundreds each one has its own goals and methods and cracking an enemy like that is nearly impossible using old techniques. So the president's advisors on such matters told him this and informed him that the only way for use to get good Intel on this enemy is to hold them and integrate them as to who they work for. They felt that the best way to accomplish this was to keep certain high rated enemy combatants and to hold them at a single point where they can be interrogated for information, and it was from this decision that the Guantanamo bay came into existence. These high rated enemies were held as illegal combatants and due to a loop hole in international law and this allowed us to ignore the Geneva Convention and hold them for as ever long as we wish. Now these prisoners are kept in our naval base in Cuba where they are interrogated by military personal United States military for information.

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How ever our policy of keeping these prisoners has come under a great deal of fire both from within and outside of the United States.
The International Red Cross was allowed to enter the base and look at the condition of the detainees and see if they are properly cared for and treated. Their findings outlined a couple of concerns over the treatment of the prisoners and the interrogation methods used by the interrogators. These methods included assaults on both the physical and mental states of the prisoners in order to break them down and gather intelligence. The Red Cross also has reason to believe that the doctors at the base are working with the interrogators to help steer the tactics that the interrogators use against the prisoners, and if this is true it is in clear violation of the oath that these doctors took in while training in their field. The International Red Cross went further to explain to those reading the paper that they were not allowed to share with the general public the full results of their findings due to restrictions that were agreed upon with the untied states government.
The Department of defense has released its own statement that basically says that the prisoners kept a Gitmo are properly treated for and are not placed in any undue stress and that the interrogation techniques being use on the prisoners are no different then the ones that would be used against a normal civil prisoner. They also go on to say that the prisoners are cared for and that there are internal auditing systems inside of the prison that monitor the behavior of the guards working at the base to make sure that they are not mistreated by guards. I also happen to know one of the guards stationed at the base and he tells me that the guards aren't even allowed to talk to the prisoners or even touch them unless they pose a threat against the guards or other prison staff. And that the reports of prisoner abuse insides of the prisons are drastically over stated. But even looking past the treatment of the prisoners we are forced to look upon how having this base open and keep these people under lock and key with out any legal rights and look at how this effects our political relations with other countries.
Many countries have expressed there concern with our treatment of the prisoners that are kept in Guantanamo some have gone so far to have requested there immediate release. Because of our maintenance of this base we have come under a great deal of fire even from friendly countries such as France and Germany. They believe that our keeping these prisoners are portraying the united states in a negative light and believe that these people should be treated as POWs and be given more humane treatment. The state department has sent letters to some of the more friendly countries inviting them to tour the prison facilities themselves, but some nations even after the tour still request us to rethink our treatment methods; though the state department says that these requests are just governments bowing down and echoing the concerns of their people.
But still there is still much debate as to how effective the keeping all of these people prisoners are. Some say that we are not gathering any true intelligence and that most of what the prisoners at the base are telling us is simply to throw us off track and that they have accomplished this in many occasions because most of the intelligence that we are getting from them turns out to either be wrong or just plain lies. However the Department of Defense maintains that we are gathering a great deal of intelligence and that keeping the prisoners there is a vital part of our counter-terrorism plans.
Then the question becomes what to do with these prisoners when it comes time to release them. The biggest concern is that we may have inadvertently managed to create a super terrorist. Much like prisoners in maximum security prisons usually leave knowing more about how to commit crimes, and have more underworld connections then they knew when they came in to prison. If we release these prisoners who will obviously hate America more then when they came in back into the loving embrace of the Jihad we may be spawning a whole new breed of super-terrorist. So the question then becomes how can we make sure that these guys don't come back to haunt us once we release them. I brought up these subject with my friends all of whom have widely ranged political views and after about an hour of debating we came to the conclusion that the only true way to make sure that don't come back to kill us is to eliminate them. Now this conclusion came under much fire by the liberals in the group who called the idea barbaric but when somebody brought up that these people had thrown in with people who would go into schools buses and blow them selves and that they deserved no better then a quick death, some of people opposing these actions were silenced. But still the question remains how are we to deal with these prisoners in way that would satisfy the world community. Though that has never been much of a concern when it comes to the internal policies of the United States.
Looking at the situation in Guantanamo bay it is clear that we have gotten ourselves into somewhat of a lose-lose situation with this base and that there is no clear way out. If the Untied States does not handle this situation with kid gloves it is probable that it will explode in our faces. We must look at the big picture and see what would be in the best interest of all the nations in what the State Department calls the functioning core of the world. These are the nations that are most vulnerable to the terrorist actions. In this Jihad ethics may be forced to take a back seat to the hard realities of the situation.
(In case you are wondering why I did not make a parallel to General Sherman's decision in regards to prisoner exchange the reason is that there are almost no parallels between the two situations. The civil war was an internal conflict between the United States and the confederate states and it was a war fought with honor. Men of both sides met each other in fields of honor and fought with honor but in these days there is none of that we are talking about people who run into buildings and buses filled with people with C4 and ball bearings attached to their chest and blowing themselves up with the intent of killing the most number of civilians possible such tactic would have been completely unheard of in the civil war. Not to mention the terrorists can't give us anything of value to compensate for the releases of the prisoners.)
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