Earlier this month, the US released 16 Saudis from Guantanamo Bay. A total of 77 Saudis have been freed from detention. If you shared my “Uh-oh” reaction, then you will not be surprised by this latest report in The Age (via Andrew Bolt) about freed Gitmo detainees taking up arms and resuming jihad. According to the paper, at least 30 former Guantanamo Bay detainees have been killed or recaptured after taking up arms against allied forces following their release. A Defense Department spokesman told the newspaper that most of the catch-and-release beneficiaries have been discovered in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Commander Jeffrey Gordon said the detainees had, while in custody, falsely claimed to be farmers, truck drivers, cooks, small-arms merchants, low-level combatants or had offered other false explanations for being in Afghanistan.
“We are aware of dozens of cases where they have returned to militant activities, participated in anti-US propaganda or engaged in other activities,” said Commander Gordon.
His comments follow the death this week of Taliban commander and former detainee Abdullah Mehsud, who reportedly blew himself up rather than surrender to Pakistani forces. In December 2001, Mehsud was captured in Afghanistan and held at Guantanamo Bay until his release in March 2004. He later became the Taliban chief for South Waziristan.
The article notes Gitmo detainees’ successful use of sob-story cover stories–repeated wholesale by the MSM. As we saw during the suicide pact stunt, manipulation and lying are staples of their training.
“These former detainees successfully lied to US officials, sometimes for over three years,” Gordon told The Age. “Common cover stories include going to Afghanistan to buy medicines, to teach the Koran or to find a wife. Many of these stories appear so often, and are subsequently proven false, that we can only conclude that they are part of their terrorist training.”
The Age notes a recent analysis of 516 Guantanamo detainees by the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point, which found that “while there was no evidence linking six of them to terrorist activities, 95 per cent were a potential threat to US interests. This was based on their affiliations with groups such as al-Qaeda, their enthusiasm for violent jihad, their having undertaken small-arms training or having been willing to perform a support role for terrorism.”
The PDF of the CTC report is here. Here’s one of the graphs breaking down the threats:
The researchers reviewed 291 unclassified summaries of detainee records that contained evidence that the detainee directly participated in or supported hostile acts. They found:
• 56 individuals admitted to fighting the U.S. or Coalition forces
• 104 individuals were found to have manned the front lines
• 9 individuals were found to have participated in a bombing operation, improvised explosives device (IED) attack or other explosives-involved operation
• 98 individuals were found to have directly participated in, or supported the planning or plotting of, a combat operation.
• 3 individuals were found to have purchased weapons for the furtherance of committing hostile acts.
• 21 individuals were found to have engaged in ‘other’ hostile activities.
And here’s a breakdown of the countries of origin of the 516 detainees. Most came from Afghanistan, Yemen, and, yes, Saudi Arabia:
Savvy Democrats ought to be questioning the Bush administration’s mass release of Saudi detainees given such analysis. But they’re all too busy pressing for the immediate closure of Gitmo and the full liberation of every last detainee from the facility.
Democrats: For freeing jihadists faster.
Put that on a bumper sticker.