Death at Camp Delta

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On the evening of June 9, 2006, three inmates of the Guantanamo detention facility known as Camp Delta, Salah Ahmed al-Salami, Mani Shaman al-Utaybi and Yasser Tala al-Zahrani, were found dead in their cells.

All three men had died in a very similar and somewhat bizarre circumstances hung alone in their individual cells, with bound hands and feet, and with a rag stuffed down their throats.

Their bodies were not discovered for two hours despite supposedly being under surveillance from both circulating guards and static cameras.

Senior military commanders at Guantanamo described the deaths as “an act of asymmetrical warfare” perpetrated by the dead men. A military investigation pronounced the deaths suicides.

No disciplinary action was taken against any member of the guard force despite manifest breaches in the standard operating procedures in effect at the facility on the night in question.

In December 2009 Seton Hall University School of Law published a detailed review of the military investigation based on redacted documents disclosed as the result of a Freedom of Information Act request.

The report, Death in Camp Delta, found that the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) investigation suffered from major shortcomings and raised “more questions than answers”.

Earlier this month an article written by Scott Horton for Harper’s Magazine appeared which went one step further. SEE THE REST OF THIS POST