Dieser Bericht wird die Debatte über die Schliessung Guantánamos verändern: Jeder siebte Entlassene geht wieder terroristischen oder militanten Aktivitäten nach, berichtet die New York Times mit Berufung auf eine Untersuchung des Pentagons. Ich habe hier bereits im Januar über den Fall Al-Shihri berichtet, der aus dem Lager entlassen wurde und später zu Führer der Al-Kaida im Jemen aufstieg.
Insgesamt 74 Insassen sollen „rückfällig“ geworden sein. In einigen Fällen bedeutet dies aber offenbar nur, dass sie wieder Kontakt zu Militanten gesucht haben, nicht dass sie etwa schon Anschläge geplant oder verübt hätten oder im bewaffneten Kampf gestanden hätten.
An unreleased Pentagon report concludes that about one in seven of the 534 prisoners already transferred abroad from the detention center in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, has returned to terrorism or militant activity, according to administration officials.
The conclusion could strengthen the arguments of critics who have warned against the transfer or release of any more detainees as part of President Obama’s plan to shut down the prison by January. Past Pentagon reports on Guantánamo recidivism have been met with skepticism from civil liberties groups and criticized for their lack of detail.
The Pentagon promised in January that the latest report would be released soon, but Bryan Whitman, a Pentagon spokesman, said this week that the findings were still “under review.”
Two administration officials who spoke on condition of anonymity said the report was being held up by Defense Department employees fearful of upsetting the White House, at a time when even Congressional Democrats have begun to show misgivings over Mr. Obama’s plan to close Guantánamo.
Kritiker vermuten allerdings, der Report solle die Schliessung des Lagers torpedieren und es nachträglich rechtfertigen:
“It’s part of a campaign to win the hearts and minds of history for Guantánamo,” said Mark P. Denbeaux, a professor at Seton Hall University School of Law who has represented Guantánamo detainees and co-written three studies highly critical of the Pentagon’s previous recidivism reports. “They want to be able to claim there really were bad people there.”
Mr. Denbeaux acknowledged that some of the named detainees had engaged in verifiable terrorist acts since their release, but he said his research showed that their numbers were small.
“We’ve never said there weren’t some people who would return to the fight,” Mr. Denbeaux said. “It seems to be unavoidable. Nothing is perfect.”
Terrorism experts said a 14 percent recidivism rate was far lower than the rate for prisoners in the United States, which, they said, can run as high as 68 percent three years after release. They also said that while Americans might have a lower level of tolerance for recidivism among Guantánamo detainees, there was no evidence that any of those released had engaged in elaborate operations like the Sept. 11 attacks.
In addition to Mr. Shihri and Mr. Rasoul, at least three others among the 29 named have engaged in verifiable terrorist activity or have threatened terrorist acts.