This weekend several members of Congress visited Guantanamo Bay.
The US lawmakers witnessed interrogations, toured cellblocks, and ate the same lunch given to detainees on the first congressional visit to the prison since criticism of conditions there intensified in the spring.They looked around, talked to the troops, tasted the food,
In another [interrogation session], a female interrogator took an unusual approach to wear down a detainee, reading a Harry Potter book aloud for hours. He turned his back and put his hands over his ears.There may be some commentators out there who think that the stewards of Guantanamo Bay prison cleaned up all the “dirty work” in anticipation of the congressional visit. Rest assured, such commentators have never been in the military, much less been subject to any type of military inspection or a Big-Dog visit to a military unit. If a unit isn’t taking care of business in the first place—that is, living up to the objective mission standard set before it—no amount of cosmetic clean-up will be able to hide that unit’s incompetence and/or perfidy.
''The Guantanamo we saw today is not the Guantanamo we heard about a few years ago," said Representative Ellen Tauscher, Democrat of California. [SNIP](Emphasis mine.)
Representative Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, is one of many Democrats who have called for an independent commission to investigate abuse allegations and said the facility should close.
Lee stopped short of changing her position after the visit, but acknowledged, ''What we've seen here is evidence that we've made progress."
Did it ever occur to these ladies that the Guantanamo Bay they heard about is Bravo Sierra? Apparently not, because they are still talking about the camp in terms of “progress” and “improvement” as if they had been there before or had read credible accounts of criminality rather than purposeful propaganda regarding the subject (like from the linked Boston Globe).
However, it is progress indeed that some members of congress got up off of their bipartisan duffs and took a trip down to the prison to see for themselves what’s going on. Better that a “conference” in the Bahamas, at any rate.
Oh and this is a bad idea for sure.
Human rights investigators for the United Nations urged the United States to allow them inside to inspect the facility.