Friday, January 23, 2009

Guantanamo releasees

Most of the time you read about people still detained in Guantanamo. Well, here's a New York Times article about Said Ali al-Shihri, a Saudi released from Guantanamo in 2007 who has apparently resurfaced as deputy head of Al Qaeda in Yemen, where he was involved in last fall's attack on the U.S. embassy. Just think: he had said that, if released, he would go back to Riyadh and try to work in his family's furniture store.

The article challenges Pentagon statistics about the number of releasee recidivists (they say it's around 11%). Cynics like me suspect that New York Times was less concerned to inform the public than to provide cover for Obama as he discovers that closing Guantanamo is harder than it sounds. After all, the newspaper could have reported before on the others who returned to active combat against the United States - but that would have looked like justification for Bush's policy.

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