Explosive claims in a letter to his lawyers reveal a Gitmo detainee’s fears about his captors’ intentions, well in advance of his mysterious death. Meanwhile, the investigation into his apparent suicide centers on the protocols meant to prevent it.
More than two years before he was found dead in his cell at Guantanamo Bay, Adnan Farhan Abdul Latif reported that the people who oversaw his every move were facilitating his demise.
In a letter sent to his attorneys on May 28, 2010, the Yemeni detainee claimed he was given “contraband” items, such as a spoon and a “big pair of scissors … by the person responsible for Camp 5,” where uncooperative prisoners are sent.
“I am being pushed toward death every moment,” Latif wrote to human rights attorneys David Remes and Marc Falkoff. The communication was written in Arabic and translated into English by a translator Remes has worked with for nearly a decade.
“The way they deal with me proves to me that they want to get rid of me, but in a way that they cannot be accused of causing it,” Latif wrote.
On September 8, Latif was found “motionless and unresponsive” by guards in a cell in the very same Camp 5 cellblock he had cited in his letter. Two months later, the military produced a report that said he committed suicide.
The mystery surrounding the death of the eldest son of a Yemeni merchant who, by all accounts, did not belong at the offshore prison for suspected terrorists, is underscored by the almost prophetic nature of this singular letter. […]”
From Jason Leopold & Jeffrey Kaye in “Latif Letter About Guantanamo Speaks From the Grave: ‘I Am Being Pushed Toward Death Every Moment’” (Truthout, 10 December 2012)
… And, on a side note:
“The Justice Department has ruled that the Obama administration does not have to disclose video showing the forced extraction of Guantanamo Bay prison detainees because doing so would be detrimental to national security.
US District Judge John Bate has decided that the Pentagon does not have to produce dozens of recordings taken at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba military detention facility, closing the case on a long-standing Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request filed by plaintiffs with the International Counsel Bureau (ICB) and the law firm of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP.
The attorneys and ICB have been asking to see 45 video clips of forced cell extractions recorded at Gitmo as well as another tape showing a detainee shackled by guards against his will so that they could administer a haircut. On December 4, Judge Bate granted summary judgment to the government, giving Uncle Sam the go-ahead to keep the materials classified. […]”
— Pentagon’s secret Guantanamo videos will stay classified (RT, 11 December 2012)