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Road to Guntanamo - opinions?


by Sunny on 10th March, 2006 at 3:16 pm    

So, what did everyone think of Michael Winterbottom’s polemic yesterday? I was invited to a screening around two weeks ago, and published a short review here. I do express reservations about the film’s willingness to unquestioningly take whatever the Tipton Three said at face value, however Winterbottom said that the film was clearly and pointedly from their point of view. It was a reconstruction based on what they said and went through - nothing more and nothing less.

Admittedly there is something shady about four boys heading over to Afghanistan just after war had started, but I don’t buy the way some commentators have sought to imply that just because they did that - they must be terrorists. The US and UK authorities had over two years to establish whether these guys were in any way related to terrorism. They utterly failed.

As Garry Smith points out - it’s a very slipperly slope towards outright discrimination and heightened paranoia when people are dismissed just because of their religion.

A rational analysis of terrorism must lead to an acceptance that it is impossible to fully protect a country against all terrorist attacks. It’s a harsh reality to face, but it’s true. This statement does not mean, as is sometimes fatuously claimed, that we should do nothing to combat terrorism. It means that we should do everything in our power to combat it while abiding by the principles we seek to defend. Abandoning those principles is a victory for extremism.

Well said.



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60 Comments   |  


  1. Rohin — on 10th March, 2006 at 3:36 pm  

    Hello all. Sorry to hijack this thread Sunnster, but hey I am in the very country in question (the US, not Cuba) I thought it’s half-appropriate.

    When I’m on holiday I refuse to email/blog etc, but I have plenty to write about on my return. From Hasidic Jewish gangsta rappers, chats with scientologists and evangelical Christians (I like to bait them: “What about GAY abortion?”), visiting the Oscars, North Cali beatniks, American desis and a big one - race.

    That’s just the politics, I shall refrain from making you all jealous with the rest of my hol! Hope you’re all doing well. I even met some of those mutineers for those of you who know what that means. PP seems to be chugging along healthily without me, which is thoroughly depressing as I wanted it to fail miserably so my return would be demanded in the streets. With cartoons. And stuff.

    Take care y’all. See you soon.

  2. j0nz — on 10th March, 2006 at 3:37 pm  

    Guantanamo Bay, which has now acquired a reputation as one of the world’s most brutal jails

    LOL. Even though not one person has died there. Well that’s proganda for you! So brutal that on average inmates have put on 11lbs as they get 3 square meals a day.

    Tipton Three. What can I say. What the fuck do you expect to happen?! I really don’t have much sympathy for these pseudo terrorists. Either complete dumb assses or extremely cunning…

  3. Jai — on 10th March, 2006 at 3:38 pm  

    =>”It means that we should do everything in our power to combat it while abiding by the principles we seek to defend.”

    I sincerely believe that we cannot underestimate the truth of the above statement. It’s so fundamental to absolutely everything involved in this struggle — from the methods used to fight terrorists, to the attitude towards “enemy combatants” (not to mention innocent bystanders), to the treatment of captured enemies, and of course to the legal, political, and social attitude towards our fellow citizens (both Muslim and non-Muslim).

    I believe that a historical US politician (Benjamin Franklin ?) made a similar, and very famous, statement to the above (paraphrased, of course). The radio broadcaster depicted as the main character of the current film “Syriana” also says something along these lines, ie. “We cannot defend freedom abroad by abandoning it at home”.

  4. Sunny — on 10th March, 2006 at 3:39 pm  

    Heh… good to hear from you Rohin! I expect a 10,000 word epic of what you did out there, a week after you get back!

  5. Amit — on 10th March, 2006 at 4:12 pm  

    LOL @ Rohin…well I’m a fan so don’t worry..i’ll get the banners and placards ready…I may be the only one but I’ll be there!

    Unfortunately I missed the program, does anyone know if it’s going to be repeated?

  6. soru — on 10th March, 2006 at 4:21 pm  

    ‘Well said’

    err, what?

    That paragraph has the logical structure ‘_true fact_ therefor _statement_’. This is a form of intellectual sleight of hand, little different from ‘the average rainfall in madagascar is 23.4 inches per month. Therefor we must build a motorway bypass around bradford’.

    The premise is true, the conclusion may or may not be, but it is not explained in any way what the premise has to do with the conclusion.

    If someone invented a really good terrorist detection device tomorrow, so that almost all attacks _could_ be stopped, would that make it somehow ok to compromise civil liberties?

    If you reversed it, so it said ‘it is impossible to completely rule out the chance of the government going fascist, therefor we must not take any new measures about terrorism’, would that be equally valid?

    soru

  7. azucar — on 10th March, 2006 at 4:23 pm  

    I believe it’s meant to be released in cinemas and on dvd today. So I read somewhere….

  8. azucar — on 10th March, 2006 at 4:30 pm  

    “LOL. Even though not one person has died there. Well that’s proganda for you! So brutal that on average inmates have put on 11lbs as they get 3 square meals a day”

    The fact that no one has died (yet) doesn’t make it excusable in anyway at all. You can’t argue the fact that the treatment that goes on there is inhumane/degrading. And it’s not like the Tipton Three are the first ones to come out and tell the world what goes on in there either.

  9. Jai — on 10th March, 2006 at 4:45 pm  

    Rohin,

    Nice to hear from you mate. Hope you’re having a great time in the US; I had a (shall we say) “eventful” week on SM during the past few days as you may or may not know. In any case, it’s good to hear that you met up with some of the Mutineers, I hope they are all well and that you enjoyed your get-together(s) with them.

    Have fun during the rest of your travels ;)

    Jai

  10. Robert — on 10th March, 2006 at 8:04 pm  

    What annoyed me about the film was the sleight of hand they did, presenting the apparent TV footage. It was actually acted reconstruction, similar to the dramatic bits.

    Winterbottom and the writers need to understand their audience better. More explanation of just what - the hell - those boys were doing there was definitely required. They presented it like some kind of Cliff Richard film - “Hey guys, let’s all go to Afghanistan!” It didn’t ring true for me. I’m not necessarily saying it definitely did not happen in that way, but it is simply not good enough to say “don’t be prejudiced, be open minded” - the film-makers need to account for the fact that the audience is going to be skeptical.

  11. David T — on 10th March, 2006 at 8:06 pm  

    Nice to hear from you Rohin! You lucky bastard.

    “It means that we should do everything in our power to combat it while abiding by the principles we seek to defend.”

    Quite. And what we have is a political philosophy which cherishes both basic constitutional freedoms and the process rights which ensure that they are properly taken into account; even when to do so is unpopular, and indeed even when it places us at risk.

    Which is precisely why we shouldn’t be compromising or abandoning those principles, in the name of pragmatism, accommodation, or fear.

  12. merlin — on 10th March, 2006 at 8:07 pm  

    Someone posted this on Barfi - thought it sums things up quite nicely…………………..

    I watched this docu-drama (it wasn’t a documentary) with fascination and contempt for what is being permitted to happen at Guantanamo. I had the feeling whilst watchign it that it was actually a somewhat sanitised version of what happened there, or that the Tipton 3 were accorded special treatment on account of their British nationality.

    But I would have had much more sympathy for the 3 lads if I believed their story.

    Just how did these three young Muslim lads from the West Midlands wound up in the world’s most notorious detention centre, orange boiler suits and all.

    Their story was a load of the proverbial cock and bull.

    1) They go to Pakistan for a wedding. So far so good. Nothing unusual yet.

    2) Seemingly out of the blue, the idea is mooted of going to Afghanistan. Why? For ‘the experience’ and to ’see if we could help’. One of the three claims that everyone in Pakistan was saying that Afghanistan would not be attacked, and the implication is that they believed what everyone was saying.

    3) On the road just after they enter Afghanistan, the war starts and the night sky is lit up with great flashes of light and the rumbling of distant explosions. “Hey, lads, think we’d better turn back…” Funny how no one even suggested that course of action. Still, it’ll be a great experience, eh, lads?

    4) Hilariously, the film then depicted them sitting around doing nothing for two and a half weeks. After this odd little interlude, they ask a bloke to take them back to Pakistan. The bus sets off. “We assumed it was heading in the right direction,” one of the three says…

    5) This is turning into National Lampoon’s Afghan Adventure. The bus drops them off in the last remaining Taliban stronghold in teh country, where the lads spend a further indeterminate period of time (depicted on film) just sitting around doing nothing. None of them question anybody or make any efforts to reverse the magical mystery tour they’ve just been taken on.

    6) And now - to cap it all! - the Tipton 3 again accidentally (”A truck appeared and we just got on it”) wind up on a vehicle in the middle of a Taliban convoy. What a series of unfortunate events! This is so totally believable!

    7) After capture - and some truly shocking scenes showing their treatment by the new Afghan powers - the lads mysteriously do not reveal themselves to be 3 hapless British Muslims who took a detour whilst on a wedding trip to Pakistan and are now regretting it and just want to go home to their Mums. No. Hilariously egged on by other inmates not to reveal themselves as actually British wedding guests, they keep firmly quiet, and do a lot of scowling and looking sullen.

    Well, that’s just a few of the lacunae in their preposterous story of how they ended up at Guantanamo. The story is just a complete load of rubbish from start to finish. I can only imagine how it must have seemed to the Americans, a story like that. “How I Went To Pakistan To Get Married And Found Myself On A Taliban Truck”

    After I’d resolved for myself that it was all a load of bull, I settled down to view the rest of the drama from the point of view of yes they were would-be volunteers for the Taliban, who got caught. That shouldn’t and doesn’t alter the fact that the treatment meted out to them and many others both in Afghanistan and Cuba was of the very lowest you are likely to hear about in the world today. And like I said at the start, I suspect the drama was heavily sanitised.

    But pull the other one, Tipton 3. It’s got bells on…

    P.S. I thought it was a classic moment when one of the 3 told his US interrogator, in a broad Brummie accent, “But I was working at Curry’s in 2000!”

  13. Bikhair — on 11th March, 2006 at 12:36 am  

    Merlin,

    If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck, and chills with other ducks, perhaps it is a duck. I guess the only question is, is being a duck a crime, is chilling with other ducks a crime, and what exactly are these ducks?

  14. Mike — on 11th March, 2006 at 12:39 am  

    Jonz your a fascist pig. Guantanamo Bay and abu Gharib will go down in history as the American Sobibor and Treblinka.

    Here is an excerpt from the trial of Lynndie England I wrote about a while back.

    The courtroom was silent as the military judge read the list of charges against Pvt. Lynndie England. Among them:

    1. Five counts of leading naked men around by a leash without an official Dominatrix license issued by the mayor of San Francisco,

    2. Three counts of piling naked men on top of each other outside the confines of an accredited Ivy League fraternity,

    3. One count of repeatedly saying “Nee” until Iraqi prisoners brought her a shrubbery,

    and the most heinous crime of all, an act of such inhuman brutality that it makes the Rape of Nan King look like a Sunday picnic:

    4. Eleven counts of genital mocking.

    To those who think that genital mocking is a victimless crime, think again. Nationwide, over 300,000 white males have their genitals mocked each year. The numbers are significantly higher among enlisted men, who have teensy, peanut-sized genitalia, for which they compensate by carrying around big guns and saying, “OOoh, look me at me, I’m so macho!”

    To Muslim males, having one’s genitals mocked by a woman is considered a fate worse than having one’s head slowly sawed off while other men laugh and sing over your bloodcurdling screams. That’s exactly why this crime was so insidious, and why that palimpsest piece of flatulovaporous effluvium must never be allowed to see the light of day again.

    Statistics show that 9 out of 10 gential mockers will mock genitals again if released into the general population. Serial mockers such as England have been known to mock hundreds of genitals before finally being apprehended. Unless anti-genital mocking hate crime legislation is enacted immediately, we may never again return to the bygone days when young men could walk the streets at night with their flies open and their tackle out.

    Unfortunately, the neocon judge in this case refused to accept England’s guilty plea, citing that some of the photographic evidence was taken at a democrat party fundraiser at Martha’s Vineyard last weekend. The judge’s decision sends a dangerous message to genital mockers that the mocking of genitalia will not only be tolerated, but encouraged as a matter of military policy.

  15. Bikhair — on 11th March, 2006 at 3:36 am  

    Mike,

    “To Muslim males, having one’s genitals mocked by a woman is considered a fate worse than having one’s head slowly sawed off while other men laugh and sing over your bloodcurdling screams.”

    Very funny. Except that no one at Abu Gharib sawed off anyones head so they can only be guilty by relgious association. Ok now I get your point.

  16. Larry Teabag — on 11th March, 2006 at 1:01 pm  

    I agree with other comments here, that the apparent swallowing whole of the T3’s implausible story weakened the film in my eyes.

    However it’s worth saying that despite being locked up and investigated for 2 years no-one’s proved their guilt.

    However even if they were there fighting, their detention and torture in the legal black-hole of G’tmo was still utterly intolerable in the civilised world. That point came through loud and clear.

  17. Mike — on 11th March, 2006 at 1:39 pm  

    “However even if they were there fighting, their detention and torture in the legal black-hole of G’tmo was still utterly intolerable in the civilised world. That point came through loud and clear.”

    In another time these ‘British citizens’ would have been hung for treason. Moreover, their claims of torture have not been proven.

  18. Sid D H Arthur — on 11th March, 2006 at 2:27 pm  

    In another time these ‘British citizens’ would have been hung for treason. Moreover, their claims of torture have not been proven.

    In another time, the detainment of prisoners without recourse to basic tenets of human dignity, to be given the right to for legal representation, to be detained without trial, and to be tortured would have been the outragageous practice of “other” totalitarian regimes that would be everthing a liberal democracy would be against. Instead now we’re part of that practice and we have to tolerate the fatuous defence that this is what liberal democracies must do.

  19. Mike — on 11th March, 2006 at 3:45 pm  

    “Instead now we’re part of that practice and we have to tolerate the fatuous defence that this is what liberal democracies must do.”

    Nonsence, again the only evidence that we have is from former detainies. We have all read what alledeldly goes on at Guatonamo ie: interogated by scantilly clad females, stress positions(oh dear) Korans being flushed down the toilet turned out to be a crock; minor examples of possible disrespect of the holy book are outweighed by multiple desecrations of their Korans by the detainees. One man was exposed to Christina Aguilera CDs played very loud in an attempt to break him, which I can’t say I’d care for. Another had large chunks of Harry Potter read to him, but don’t worry, it wasn’t the new one.
    None the less, Shehzad Tanweer was outraged enough by the brutal torture of fellow Muslims of having Harry Potter read to by a woman, he self-detonated on the Underground and killed seven people. You might like to ponder that before they puff up the next shameful torture technique (insufficient selection of entrées?).

  20. Al-Hack — on 11th March, 2006 at 4:10 pm  

    What does Shehzad Tanweer have to do with the Titon Three, Mike?

    Btw - the story about the Koran being flushed down the toilet. Newsweek half-heartedly apologised with the story after the US administration didn’t produce the report it was supposed to, in time… but the same stories have surfaced on other military documents. Do your research properly.

  21. j0nz — on 11th March, 2006 at 5:20 pm  

    Mike, you utter panzy. I feel sorry for you.

    Hiya Rohin!! If you get time maybe make a post?!

  22. Mike — on 11th March, 2006 at 5:26 pm  

    Al-Hack

    Are you familiar with American plumbing? Apparently not, it’s impossible to flush a Koran down the toilet? Especially down an American federally-regulated lo-flush toilet (inflicted on the nation by the eco-zealot Al Gore) It even takes a bit of effort to get even an average issue of Newsweek down and round the bend. I tried flushing my own Koran, a tome of over 950 pages down there and wound up getting water all over my wingtips and squelching off in my socks to call a plumber. Perhaps the editorial bigfoots at Newsweek should have tested that themselves in their executive washroom.

  23. Al_Mujahid_for_debauchery — on 11th March, 2006 at 5:58 pm  

    Mike,

    They were flushing down pages from the Quran and not the whole Quran in one piece.

    Anyway,

    I dont really give a fuck about the flushing down of the Quran. What I do care about is dispelling the notion that what happened in Abu Ghraib was the equivalent of hazing which one goes through during initiation for joining some jock fraternity.
    To trivialize the happenings in Abu Ghraib as a frat party gone wild with genital mocking and teasing is not only reckless but shows an astonishing amount of ignorance and apathy or both.

    People were killed in Abu Ghraib. People were killed in American confinement Afghanistan. We are not talking here about genital foolery. We are talking about murder and vicious beatings which led to murder.

    “At least 26 prisoners have died in American custody in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2002 in what U.S. Army and Navy investigators have now concluded or suspect were acts of criminal homicide, according to military officials”
    http://72.14.207.104/search?q=cache:7c-OmJ7UJvIJ:www.iht.com/bin/print_ipub.php%3Ffile=/articles/2005/03/15/news/abuse.html

  24. Al_Mujahid_for_debauchery — on 11th March, 2006 at 6:06 pm  

    The number of dead prisoners in American custody in Iraq/Afghanistan because of government interrogation now surpasses the government sponsored custodial murder in most 3rd world nations.

    Yes, I am sure that we can find nations around the world where government murders more people in custody, but its non excusable irrespective of where it happens.

    I do believe that America will eventually account for all these custodial deaths and hold investigations and eventually come out stronger once we learn from our mistakes in the way we carried out this war.
    This however does not mean that we should give the current US government a pass on some very blatant prisoner abuses.

  25. j0nz — on 11th March, 2006 at 6:23 pm  

    Conditions have seriously improved at Abu Ghraib in the past 4 years. There was an uprising there a few years back, and Saddam ordered the execution of 600 prisoners.

    Not that this justifies soldiers humilitating or abusing prisoners, that is just wrong. All those abusing their position should be dealt with seriously.

    But, get a grip lefties. If it was down to you, Saddam could have executed another 600 prisoners in a day at Abu Ghraib, and we would be none the wiser.

    And the hysterical stuff of leaving a Qu’ran near a toilet in Guatanamo needs no real comment. 16 People died through this bit of ‘information’.

    US really needs to reign in those unruly officers and punish those who are abusing prisoners severely. But banging on relentlesley about ‘Guantanmo’ or ‘Abu Ghraib’ just makes people switch there ears off. It was you same people who, a couple of years ago who couldn’t utter a sentence without the words ‘Bush’, ‘Blair’ and ‘Illegal war’. Seriously, apart from sounding very dumb, you just repeat yourselves with very little rational thought to back it up.

    And if you are going to bang on about human rights, please spare a thought for those people who are executed around the world for as little a crime as being homosexual, or having a different opinion to the government, or getting raped, or blaspheming, or adultery. China, Iran, Sudan. Let’s have some balance.

  26. Don — on 11th March, 2006 at 6:30 pm  

    Al Mujahid,

    Well put. Mike’s original post was, admittedly, quite witty. But after a couple of years in a cage I imagine the joke wears thin.

  27. Larry Teabag — on 11th March, 2006 at 6:49 pm  

    jOnz: if you are going to bang on about human rights, please spare a thought for…

    That’s the standard lame “moral equivalence” defence. It’s not as bad as what’s going on in Iran/China therefore it’s… what? Nothing to worry about? The British government isn’t complicit in what’s going on in Iran.

    When a barbaric hell-hole like that tortures people and deliberately flies in the face of international law it’s terrible, but basically unsurprising. When the so-called “leader of the free world” does, we should all worry.

    Anyway who the hell are you to say that we don’t spare a thought for beleagured people elsewhere.

    Mike: stress positions(oh dear).

    Nice Mike. I’d like to see how long you’d last.

  28. raz — on 11th March, 2006 at 7:13 pm  

    jonz,

    Al Queda and Islamic terrorists are nowhere near as bad as China, North Korea, etc which has killed countless millions. Are you going to start defending Bin Laden and co with this same argument?

  29. leanne — on 11th March, 2006 at 7:40 pm  

    How terrible of the United States to keep prisoners in a prison….. maybe they should set them up at the Hilton for you.
    The acts described were from the very begining…..Those gaurds were punished for their behavior.
    If you all are so worried about the treatment and tourture of inmates maybe you should look around alittle harder.
    To keep prisoners during war is for the saftey of all, what do you suggest?
    let them go if they promise to be nice?
    or take no prisoners at all?
    just let them go on with the war till everyone kills everyone?
    That would end things I guess, and it would be alot nicer.

  30. Don — on 11th March, 2006 at 7:59 pm  

    Leanne.

    I think the point is that they are not POW’s. If they were, the Geneva Convention would apply. Remember the Geneva Convention?

    The Hilton? No, just don’t indulge in wierd psycho-sexual excesses. And I doubt if anybody believes the guards were doing anything other than that which was required of them.

  31. leanne — on 11th March, 2006 at 10:30 pm  

    they aren’t POW”S ?????
    what are they then?
    The Geneva Convention should apply !
    In case no one has told you….
    we are at war.
    With Iraq,
    but also with terrorism.
    Terrorist groups have delared war on us…..
    us not meaning the U.S. alone - but almost everyone.
    why aren’t they held to the Geneva Convention for taking hostages -
    tourturing and beheading their POW’s ?

    I personally was upset that people who represent me and my country chose to do these acts…….and took photographs .
    I am not sure I can believe it was required of them…..that would be dumb.
    I’m not down playing the events…..but I wouldn’t call it tourture , bullying maybe. degrading yes,
    and immature. Thats all.

  32. Don — on 12th March, 2006 at 12:10 am  

    Leanne,

    ‘they aren’t POW”S ?????
    what are they then?
    The Geneva Convention should apply !’

    Yes, it should, shouldn’t it? But it doesn’t. A little background research might help.

    ‘In case no one has told you….
    we are at war.
    With Iraq’

    Missed that news. When did that happen?

    ‘why aren’t they held to the Geneva Convention for taking hostages -
    tourturing and beheading their POW’s ‘

    Because they are psychopathic twats who recognise no conventions. When and if found, they are subject to quite rigorous consequences.

    ‘I am not sure I can believe it was required of them…..that would be dumb.’

    There is evidence that the degradation was a considered policy. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t also dumb. The two can co-exist, like humans and fish.

    ‘ bullying maybe. degrading yes,
    and immature. Thats all. ‘

    Just avert your eyes from the corpses and it will all be ok.

  33. jamal — on 12th March, 2006 at 12:46 am  

    Yes, the thing is that the geneva convention should be applied but it doesnt. As we all know, america does its own thing when it comes to war and conflict.

    Anyway, regardless of all the arguements that can be put forward, the fact is that these men have been held for many years without charge amidst terrible treatment.

    They should either be charged and dealt with, or let go.

  34. leanne — on 12th March, 2006 at 1:09 am  

    hope we are not getting bitchy with each other…..it doesnt make people smarter.

    what makes you think I would comment without any researching?
    and the geneva convention ( which I have read most of) does apply.
    There were only some exceptions made to fit the specifics of this war due to the fact the psychopathic twats you mentioned dont follow the rules.
    I feel sorry for the prisoners too, and I said I can not comment on if the gaurds were following orders or not.
    It is over and the ones responsible are being delt with.
    The treatment of the prisoners now is that of prisoners.
    Sorry.
    People get mad at this- but dont seem to take into concideration the living conditions of soldiers in the fighting field ….. on both sides.

    also, what do you mean by advert my eyes from the corpses? I don’t want to see them at all!

  35. jamal — on 12th March, 2006 at 1:28 am  

    “I said I can not comment on if the gaurds were following orders or not.”

    My opinion is that this does not even matter. We dont excuse Nazi concentration camp guards because they was following the orders of hitler.

    The rest of wht you say i agree with. Although im sure those detained dont consider it over.

  36. leanne — on 12th March, 2006 at 1:36 am  

    I know jamal,
    and I would appologize myself to them if it mattered to anyone.
    I only say I can’t comment…..cause I dont know.

  37. Mike — on 12th March, 2006 at 11:52 am  

    Jamal,

    “My opinion is that this does not even matter. We don’t excuse Nazi concentration camp guards because they was following the orders of hitler.”

    Earlier I compared Guantanamo to the Nazi Sobibor and Treblinka death camps (300.000 and 900.000 victims respectively, mostly Yahood with a few odd Gypsies thrown in) When I wrote that my tongue was firmly in cheek. Comparing a prison, where the main problem is weight gain and boredom, to a Nazi death camp is just, well stupid.

    Guantanamo is the only “torture camp” in history where the medical staff outnumbers the prisoners. If you’re a Brit detainee and you get some disease, you’ll be diagnosed and treated a lot quicker in Gitmo than at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. Many Russian Muslims claimed their health improved during their time in the camp—they ate better and they put on weight. Several Afghan and Pakistani Muslims got back home and told the local press they’d had such a grand time they wanted to emigrate to the United States.

    Given that this is a war against combatants without rank or serial number and many possessing multiple passports, Guantanamo is an acceptable ad hoc arrangement and rather humane, all things considered? After all, if Rummy had wanted to be “culturally sensitive” to the Taliban detainees, he’d simply have herded them on to some Afghan soccer pitch and shot them as the half-time entertainment, which is the way Mullah Omar’s boys liked to do things.

    Here are some thumbnail sketches of prisoners at this ‘concentration camp’ do they look innocent to you? They look like typiclal Jihadi types, the type that my wife warns me to steer clear of when she forces me to go to Friday prayer. You know the bushy beard, wild eyed, short pants. I don’t think these people are incarcerated for unpaid traffic tickets.

    http://www.cageprisoners.com/prisoners.php?location=Afghanistan

  38. j0nz — on 12th March, 2006 at 12:04 pm  

    Mike sorry for being such a dumbarse yesterday!!! Your opening was archetypal of the type of hysterical nonsense spouted by the left. I didn’t read your hilarious post in entirety… !!

  39. Mike — on 12th March, 2006 at 12:40 pm  

    Jonz

    Although she is not my type, I like your infidel babe of the week, this week. But I didn’t know L’il Kim had blue eyes.(quadroon?) Poor girl is in prison, some bull dyke will be happy. Who is the fetching lady on the right?

    This is my favorite Desi at the moment. (Her music sucks in a big way) She has received numerous death threats from the usual suspects.
    http://deeyah.com/

  40. Don — on 12th March, 2006 at 1:02 pm  

    Mike,

    Not entirely sure of the logic of your posting a link to support your position that detainees are well treated, when the site details how many have been beaten to death.

  41. Sid D H Arthur — on 12th March, 2006 at 1:07 pm  

    Guantanamo is the only “torture camp” in history where the medical staff outnumbers the prisoners. If you’re a Brit detainee and you get some disease, you’ll be diagnosed and treated a lot quicker in Gitmo than at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham.

    I won’t tolerate criticism of the NHS!!!

    But seriously, Mike is right. Gitmo is a Club 18-30 holiday camp compared to practices of torture perpetrated by other totalitarian regimes he has not wasted time in comparing with.
    Including Eastern European countries where, thanks to rendition of the extraordinary crimes and which have not qualiofied for the media circus of Gitmo, American and European countries (Italy, Poland etc) have transferred victims for real torture. Gitmo is a bad, but ultimately its a smokescreen for the real torture camps that are operating under the media radar highlighted by Craig Murray.

  42. Sid D H Arthur — on 12th March, 2006 at 1:37 pm  

    This is my favorite Desi at the moment. (Her music sucks in a big way)

    S’funny. Goldfrapp is my favourite White Person of the moment. (Her music sucks in a big way).

  43. Mike — on 12th March, 2006 at 1:45 pm  

    Sid D H Arthur

    I agree these places are not Butlins, but I just don’t feel sorry for these people. I have met too many Islamofascists to care what happens to these hirsute savages. I would have my head sawed off if I was captured by these thugs. Moreover, I don’t agree with the argument that locking up potential terrorists is a step away from the death camps.

  44. Mike — on 12th March, 2006 at 2:04 pm  

    Sid,

    “Goldfrapp is my favourite White Person of the moment. (Her music sucks in a big way).”

    Whatever floats your boat. However, I prefer something a bit more duskier.

  45. Sunny — on 12th March, 2006 at 2:14 pm  

    Comparing a prison, where the main problem is weight gain and boredom, to a Nazi death camp is just, well stupid.

    Agreed, but that doesn’t mean Gitmo is a holiday camp, and the fact that people are even making such comparison (albeit, blindly) should give the USA some cause for concern. Either way that place should not exist.

  46. Barbara Meinhoff — on 12th March, 2006 at 2:51 pm  

    Guantanamo Bay and abu Gharib will go down in history as the American Sobibor and Treblinka.

    And yet no one seems to be making films showing whats happening in Sudan to the Black Muslim and Chrisian population, being enslaved, raped bruned and murdered by the Arab Islamist north

  47. Mike — on 12th March, 2006 at 3:44 pm  

    My own position on Guantanamo two-and-a-half years on is roughly this: I have some measure of sympathy for some hapless Pushtun goatherd scooped up in the disintegration of the Taliban regime, less for the many young Saudis captured in Afghanistan, and less still for the western jihadi—those with British, Australian, Canadian, and European passports. That last group would be the ones I’d be most interested in wringing every last drop of info out of—the Pushtun goatherd is no big threat to us, but the western jihadi are the ones who know how to swim in our waters, what ID you need at the border post, the form of words that gets you onto the plane. I don’t believe these fellows are covered by the Geneva Convention.

    Barbara

    “And yet no one seems to be making films showing whats happening in Sudan to the Black Muslim and Chrisian population, being enslaved, raped bruned and murdered by the Arab Islamist north.”

    Well that would cause gratuitous offense to our multicultural sensitivities. And if you did, you’d see Tony Blair’s storm troopers cracking heads and rounding up the producers at gunpoint. Last year, at a Countryside Alliance rally against the ban on hunting, the fuzz attacked well-behaved, tweedy types in a manner that German cops back in 1936 would have envied.

  48. Chris Stiles — on 12th March, 2006 at 3:51 pm  


    less for the many young Saudis captured in Afghanistan, and less still for the western jihadi

    Presumably that only applies to Western Jihadi’s who stayed on post the Soviet retreat.


    Well that would cause gratuitous offense to our multicultural sensitivities.

    No, it really wouldn’t. However, there are no realpolick reasons for intervening, and no compelling TV images to create a popular clamour to do so.

  49. Don — on 12th March, 2006 at 4:18 pm  

    The silence over Darfur is shameful, Cantuar’s in particular. I don’t suppose many of us have too many illusions about Blair remaining, but I believe he has a real concern for Africa and would have taken a stronger line, as he did in Sierra Leon, had he not enmired imself in Iraq.

  50. Bikhair — on 12th March, 2006 at 4:28 pm  

    Barbara & Mike,

    “And yet no one seems to be making films showing whats happening in Sudan to the Black Muslim and Chrisian population, being enslaved, raped bruned and murdered by the Arab Islamist north.”

    So many books written about this issue with major calls for divestment by University Of California campuses across the state and by other Universities.

    “Well that would cause gratuitous offense to our multicultural sensitivities. And if you did, you’d see Tony Blair’s storm troopers cracking heads and rounding up the producers at gunpoint.”

    Right, which is why no one ever talks about what goes on in the Southern Sudan and Northern Ugandan border or Central African Congo Rebublic. Perhaps their arent enough Arabs of Islamist involved for their to be any real concern for the likes of you. My cynicism is only when people are more concerned about those who perpetuate these terrible crimes (Arab Islamist from the North) and not the people who have to suffer these crimes, Darfurians, Southern Sudanese, Northern Ugandans, women and children of Central Africa. And the list can go on and on.

    I’ve got to ask what the connection is there between Western straglers in Afghanistan and the Sudanese government Barbara. I guess everyone needs their strawman.

  51. Don — on 12th March, 2006 at 4:46 pm  

    “Well that would cause gratuitous offense to our multicultural sensitivities. And if you did, you’d see Tony Blair’s storm troopers cracking heads and rounding up the producers at gunpoint.”

    That’s just lazy, inaccurate nonsense.

    Bikhair,

    ‘My cynicism is only when people are more concerned about those who perpetuate these terrible crimes (Arab Islamist from the North) and not the people who have to suffer these crimes, Darfurians, Southern Sudanese, Northern Ugandans, women and children of Central Africa. ‘

    I’m not sure how you distinguish those who accuse the perpetrators and those who are concerned for the victims. You seem to be suggesting (and I apologise if I have misread you) that concern over this atrocity must be considered as having an anti-islam biase.

    As for ‘nobody talks about’ I suggest you refer to Nick Cohen and Christopher Hitchens;

    http://www.vanityfair.com/commentary/content/articles/060109roco03

  52. Mike — on 12th March, 2006 at 5:18 pm  

    Jonz,

    I don’t know if she can be categorized as an infidel,(yet) but I believe UBL’s niece would be an excellent addition to your ‘infidel babe of the week’

    http://sabbah.biz/mt/archives/2005/12/24/wafa-bin-laden-decided-to-show-her-butt-and-sabbah-pays-for-it/

  53. Sunny — on 12th March, 2006 at 5:30 pm  

    Mike - You see, civil rights and liberty isn’t really about who you have sympathy for. It sounds like - “well we have superior firepower and since I don’t have much sympathy for you I’ll lock you up incase you might be a terrorist. Oh and while you’re at it, please improve your civil rights.”

    Do you see why this strategy might not win “hearts and minds”? Though I expect you’re not really fussed about that…

  54. Bikhair — on 12th March, 2006 at 7:15 pm  

    Don,

    “I’m not sure how you distinguish those who accuse the perpetrators and those who are concerned for the victims. You seem to be suggesting (and I apologise if I have misread you) that concern over this atrocity must be considered as having an anti-islam biase.”

    That is exactly what I am suggesting. Barbara didnt bring up crimes commited by those who arent Muslims. So long as Muslims are doing this in some country i.e. Sudan, then who cares about what inconviences they may face in Britain, Pakistan, Iraq, Cuban. Its very strange to me because one has nothing to do with the other, aside from them being Muslim.

    Hey, no one is talking about Islam here, just Muslims.

  55. Sid D H Arthur — on 12th March, 2006 at 8:11 pm  

    Though I expect you’re not really fussed about that…

    Wouldn’t hold my breath Sunny.

    Gitmo was created to win the hearts and minds of the US public. Traumatised and panicked after 9/11, I think they needed to have a signal that Boosh Inc was on top of the War on Trrrrsm.
    When Boosh Inc falls, Gitmo wll have be dismantled too. And all it’ll be is an inglorious stain on an o/w stainlessly glorious presidency.

  56. Don — on 12th March, 2006 at 8:14 pm  

    Bikhair,

    Must one always address every injustice when condemning one? If I consider the situation in the Sudan to be vile and in need of condemnation, which I do, is that invalidated because I don’t simultaneously go into all the inconviences [moslems] face in Britain ‘? Rather a different order of inconvenience, wouldn’t you say?

  57. douglas — on 13th March, 2006 at 1:47 am  

    Sunny,

    I doubt anyone, well me really, would have the slightest issue with the US keeping prisoners of war in detention. It is their complete failure to extend the defenition of prisoners of war to people who may have simply been caught up in the war in terrorism. that makes me think that they are being ingenuous. That said, their policy of humiliation and torture is a spectacular own goal. Given that they couldn’t stick anything on the ‘Tipton Three’, suggests that here are other folk in Gotmo who are innocent.

    I think that the US administration has lost the real plot, in term of winning hearts and minds, in exchange for a cheap ” Nam was Us, or don'’t f**k with us mentality. The treatment of prisoners of war, for that is what they are if you believe in the ‘War on Terror’, ought to be controlled by the Geneva Convention. That fact that they won’t subscribe goves every conspiracy nut on the planet freedom to speculate. It is an erronious policy and it is, quite frankly, wrong, wrong, wrong.

  58. douglas — on 13th March, 2006 at 1:49 am  

    Err,

    sorry about the dodgy spelling.

  59. Me — on 21st March, 2006 at 3:52 pm  

    Fuck you all

  60. Me — on 21st March, 2006 at 3:55 pm  

    War on Terrorism? isnt it quite clear that US went into war only for Oil? how thick and stupid does one have to be not to see that….. I truely and simply felt so bad for the T3, they were just 3 simple and naive boys who made a mistake by even thinking of going to Afghanistan, but we are all humans and we all make mistakes.

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