the Guantanamo files

The guardian has an excellent series covering Wikileaks recent discovery of documents telling the secrets of the notorious U.S anti-terror prison in Guantanamo. You can read an introduction here. The documents reveal some interesting data, which is worth a peak in my mind. Among the highlights:

  • Profiles of all 779 detainees (past and present; some containing significant data, others almost empty); The important and sad data is that not all of those held in Guantanamo have been verified as terrorists. It would appear that this ongoing facility of human rights violation has hurt the lives of too many persons whose innocence has never been undermined. Is security really worth that price ? 
  • a significant part of those released from Guantanamo have resumed Terrorist activities; Seems like Saudi and American specialists argue whether recidivism of Terrorists is impacted by a stay at Guantanamo. Apparently, Americans, who are used to an approximate 60% recidivism in their jail system, are not impressed by a 6% recidivism among Guantanamo past guests. Saudis, as can be understood from this data, are accustomed to a much lower recidivism rate, less than 3%, of suspects of terror activities who were treated by them. Reading about this debate, one cannot avoid the thought that  the Saudis should advise the Americans regarding the entire U.S penal system (this last sentence was a joke, people. As much a farce as the current rehabilitation system of the U.S is, no person in his sound mind, with the smallest dignity to human rights,  would suggest to replace it with the Saudi's system). 
  • It also turns out that some of the current detainees appear to be extremely dangerous persons; of the types we should all feel better if they are kept behind bars;  considering recent reports about an ingenious escape of 480 Taliban prison from a jail in Kandahar, an escape timed just before the beginning of the annual summer "fighting season", one has to feel that Guantanamo has some positive appeal as well, despite all this new data... 

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