Deleted:Taj Mohammed (Guantanamo Bay detainee)

From WikiAlpha
Jump to: navigation, search
The below content is licensed according to Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License contrary to the public domain logo at the foot of the page. It originally appeared on The original article might still be accessible here. You may be able to find a list of the article's previous contributors on the talk page.


Taj Mohammed
Born 1981 (age 42–43)

Taj Mohammed is a citizen of Afghanistan who was held in extrajudicial detention in the United States Guantanamo Bay detention camps, in Cuba.[1] His Guantanamo Internment Serial Number was 902. Joint Task Force Guantanamo counter-terrorism analysts estimate Mohammed was born in 1981. He was repatriated in 2006.[2]

According to Washington Post reporter, Mahvish Khan, who visited Taj Mohammed in detention with habeas counsel, he learned English within his four years of detention.[3]

Combatant Status Review Tribunal

Combatant Status Review Tribunals were held in a 3 x 6 meter trailer. The captive sat with his hands cuffed and feet shackled to a bolt in the floor.[4] Three chairs were reserved for members of the press, but only 37 of the 574 Tribunals were observed.[5]

Initially the Bush administration asserted that they could withhold all the protections of the Geneva Conventions to captives from the war on terror. This policy was challenged before the Judicial branch. Critics argued that the USA could not evade its obligation to conduct competent tribunals to determine whether captives are, or are not, entitled to the protections of prisoner of war status.

Subsequently the Department of Defense instituted the Combatant Status Review Tribunals. The Tribunals, however, were not authorized to determine whether the captives were lawful combatants -- rather they were merely empowered to make a recommendation as to whether the captive had previously been correctly determined to match the Bush administration's definition of an enemy combatant.


A memorandum summarizing the evidence against Taj Mohammed prepared for his Combatant Status Review Tribunal, was among those released in March 2005.[6] The allegations Mohammed faced were:

a. The detainee is associated with forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners.
  1. The detainee is a member of the Lashkar-e-Tayyiba group.
  2. The Lashkar-e-Tayyiba is listed in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Terrorist Organization Guide due to its ties to al-Qaida.
  3. The detainee volunteered to round up people for the Lashkar-e-Tayyiba to fight in jihad.
  4. The detainee was a soldier in the Hizb-I Islami Gulbuddin (HIG).
  5. The HIG is listed in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Terrorist Organization Reference Guide as having long-established ties to Usama Bin Ladin.
  6. The detainee is associated with members of the Taliban.
  7. The detainee was paid for the attack on an American military base.


Mohammed participated in his Combatant Status Review Tribunal.[7]

Administrative Review Board hearing

Detainees who were determined to have been properly classified as "enemy combatants" were scheduled to have their dossier reviewed at annual Administrative Review Board hearings. The Administrative Review Boards weren't authorized to review whether a detainee qualified for POW status, and they weren't authorized to review whether a detainee should have been classified as an "enemy combatant".

They were authorized to consider whether a detainee should continue to be detained by the United States, because they continued to pose a threat—or whether they could safely be repatriated to the custody of their home country, or whether they could be set free.

Mohammed chose to participate in his Administrative Review Board hearing.c

Enemy Combatant election form

Taj Mohammed's Assisting Military Officer, reading from the Enemy Combatant election form, reported that they met on October 19, 2005, for forty minutes, where Taj Mohammed said he wanted to submit 31 letters to his Board. They met again on October 20, 2005 for 71 minutes. His Assisting Military Officer described Taj Mohammed as "polite and cooperative throughout both interviews" The following primary factors favor continued detention

a. Commitment
  1. The detainee was captured on 09 December 2002 under suspicion of firing Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPGs) at the American firebase in Asadabad, Afghanistan, on 02 December 2002.
  2. The detainee admitted firing three RPGs at the firebase. He didn't know the date but it is believe that this was an attack that occurred in September 2002.
  3. The detainee said he was offered money by Mullah Sher to fire the RPGs at the American base. After he had completed the attack, Mullah Sher took the RPG launcher back from him and instead of the promised payment, bought him a pair of tennis shoes. The detainee stated that Mullah Sher has others working for him to conduct attacks against Americans.
  4. Maulawi Sher Wali is a former Taliban Border Brigade Commander for Konar Province. In early 2005, he was reported to have worked to smuggle explosives from Pakistan into Afghanistan.
  5. After the rocket attack, the detainee went with Rohullah to the village of Patak, Pakistan, and met with Kazi Haji. Once there, Kazi Haji gave a letter to the detainee who took it to the Mullah at the mosque in Asadabad. This Mullah has incited people while speaking in the mosque against the central government and the United States. The letter instructed the Mullah to pay the Detainee, who received 1,400 rupees.
  6. Rohullah is a known al Qaida cell leader who operated out of Konar Province, Afghanistan, and the Pakistan border region.
  7. Before Ramadan, the detainee went to Bajoor, Pakistan and met with Kazi Haji and was paid 20,000 rupees. After firing the rockets, he was paid 3,500 rupees by Jan Shah. Jan Shah then drove the detainee to Kas Konar where the detainee crossed the river near the Spin Jumat (Spin Mosque). The detainee was then seen near a stream in a taxi talking on a radio. This was .5km south of the firebase around the time of the rocket attack.
  8. Mullah Sher and Rohullah gave experience to the detainee who then delivered them to Malawi Aslam. It is believed that Malawi Aslam was responsible for the IED attack south of the firebase in September 2002. The detainee was paid by Alef Khan to pass the explosives to Aslam.
  9. Alef Khan has been identified as an armed insurgent operating out of Qalae Siahi District in Nangarhar Province, Afghanistan.
b. Connections/Associations
  1. Prior to firing the rockets at the firebase, the detainee was with Sher and Rohullah on the east side of the Konar River. Then the detainee was in a car with Sultan Sayed near Jan Dad's house.
  2. Sultan Sayed is one of four appointed HIG sub-commanders in Konar Province, to include the region around Asadabad.
  3. The detainee said that while he was Friday prayer at the mosque in the town Shiekh Yousef, Pakistan, a Lashker Taiba commander gave the prayer and began to speak about the jihad in Kashmir. After the speech, he asked for volunteers and financial aid to fight in Kashmire. The detainee went to him and offered to round up some people from his home Province to fight in the jihad.
  4. The Secretary of State has designated the Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LT) as a Foreign Terrorist Organization. The LT is the armed wing of the Pakistan-based religious organization, Markaz-ud-Dawa-wil-Irshad (MOI), a Sunni anti-United States missionary organization formed in 1989. The LT is led by Abdul Wahid Kashmiri and is one of the three largest and best-trained groups fighting in Kashmir against India. The LT has conducted a number of operations against Indian troops and civilian targets in Kashmir since 1993.
  5. United States Forces obtained information stating that the detainee had been working in Pakistan and had been known to be associated with the families of Saber Lal and Haji Rohullah.
  6. Saber Lal and Haji Rohullah are Taliban commanders.
  7. The detainee was once a soldier for Hizb-I Islami Gulbuddin (HIG) commander Sher Wali.
  8. The Secretary of State has identified the HIG as a Foreign Terrorist Organization. Gulbuddin Hikmatyar founded HIG as a faction of the Hizb-I Islami party in 1977 and it was one of the major Mujahedin groups in the war against the Soviets. HIG has long-established ties with Usama bin Ladin. HIG has stages small attacks in its attempt to force United States troops to withdraw from Afghanistan, overthrwo the Afghanistan government, and establish a fundamentalist state.

The following primary factors favor release or transfer

a. Prior to his detention, the detainee had never heard of Usama bin Laden or al Qaida.

b. The datainee stated he never worked for the Taliban.

c. A known Taliban member who received terrorist training in Afghanistan stated the detainee was not al Qaida or Taliban and that he was only an animal caretaker and a nomad from the Konar Province.

d. The detainee claims no knowledge or involvement with Hizb-E-Islami Gulbuddin (HIG).

e. The detainee stated he does not know a Rohullah, Alef Kahn, Saber Lal, or Malawi Alsam. The detainee stated that he knew a Mullah Sher when the detainee helped him build a mosque in approximately 2001.

f. The detainee denies any type of weapons training.

g. The detainee denies any involvement with any attacks against Americans.

h. The detainee has never heard of the September 11 attacks until he was detained.

i. The detainee stated he like the United States presence in Afghanistan because it brings peace and stability to the country.

j. The detainee believes jihad against the United States is wrong, and he does not intend to support it in the future.

k. The detainee believes his cousin had two men provide misinformation to the Americans about the detainee's alleged involvement with the attack in order to retaliate for the detainee's physical attack on him.

l. The detainee claims two interpreters, Waheed and Haji, who were with the Americans at the time of his capture told him to confess to firing the rockets, promising that he would then be released.

Press reports

According to the Associated Press the allegations against Nasir, in his Combatant Status Review Tribunal, was accused of being a member of Lashkar-e-Tayyiba -- The Army of the Pure.[8]

Mohammed told his Tribunal: "I was a shepherd, and I never can even go out very much, and I was always with my goats on the mountain, These are all lies about me."[8]

On June 15, 2008 the McClatchy News Service published a series of articles based on interviews with 66 former Guantanamo captives.[9] Taj Mohammed was one of thee former captives who had an article profiling him.[2]

Taj Mohammed reported being sexually harassed during his interrogations.[2] He reported that guards desecrated the Koran. According to his McClatchy interviewer Taj Mohammed tried to retaliate:

"I got into fights (with guards) because of bad meals, because of them abusing the Quran, because they didn't give us enough time in the shower," Mohammed said. "When they searched our cells the soldiers would flip through our Qurans. The detainees did not like this. We would throw water and shit on the soldiers; we would spit at them. If we could reach the soldiers we would punch them."

According to the McClatchy profile of him Taj Mohammed was radicalized in Guantanamo and said he beat less religious captives.[2] The article said his lawyers, Paul Rashkind, was taken aback when told of these assertions, and questioned whether the McClatchy interviewer may have been taken in by an impostor.

According to the McClatchy interviewer Taj Mohammed was mentored and given lessons in Arabic and the Koran by Yemeni captive Ali Abdullah Ahmed -- one of the three men camp authorities reported committed suicide on June 10, 2006.[2]

According to the McClatchy interviewer Taj Mohammed spent nine months in Camp four in 2005, the camp where "compliant" captives were allowed to mingle with other captives. He was, however, demoted when he slapped a female doctor.[2]

ABC News reported on February 22, 2010, that Taj Mohammed was employed by the Agribusiness Development Team, an Provincial Reconstruction Team development project with participation from the US military.[10] He works as a translator. He is reported to be surprisingly fluent in both English and Spanish—learned in Guantanamo.


On January 16, 2010, the Department of Defense was forced to publish the names of the 645 captives held in the Bagram Theater Internment Facility.[11] One of the indiviuals on the list was named Taj Mohammed.


  1. OARDEC (May 15, 2006). "List of Individuals Detained by the Department of Defense at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba from January 2002 through May 15, 2006" (PDF). United States Department of Defense. Retrieved 2007-09-29. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Tom Lasseter (June 15, 2008). "Guantanamo Inmate Database: Taj Mohammed". Miami Herald. Retrieved 2008-06-22.  mirror
  3. Mahvish Khan (April 30, 2006). "My Guantanamo Diary: Face to Face With the War on Terrorism". Washington Post. pp. B01. Retrieved 2008-01-19. 
  4. Inside the Guantánamo Bay hearings: Barbarian "Justice" dispensed by KGB-style "military tribunals", Financial Times, December 11, 2004
  5. "Annual Administrative Review Boards for Enemy Combatants Held at Guantanamo Attributable to Senior Defense Officials". United States Department of Defense. March 6, 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-22. 
  6. Summary of Evidence memo (.pdf) prepared for Taj Mohammed's Combatant Status Review Tribunal - November 12, 2004 - page 64
  7. Summarized transcripts (.pdf), from Taj Mohammed's Combatant Status Review Tribunal - pages 49-58
  8. 8.0 8.1 Sketches of Guantanamo Detainees-Part I, WTOP, March 15, 2006
  9. Tom Lasseter (June 15, 2008). "Guantanamo Inmate Database: Page 1". Miami Herald. Retrieved 2008-06-16.  mirror
  10. Karen Russo (2010-02-22). "Exclusive: Former Gitmo Detainee Now Working for U.S.". ABC News. Retrieved 2010-02-22. "Mohammed, a sheep herder from Kunar Province, was imprisoned for nearly four years at Gitmo. He said he doesn't harbor hard feelings about his four years of captivity, suggesting it was his destiny. He used the time praying and learning about the Koran. He also worked on his English and learned Spanish, he says, from members of the Puerto Rican National Guard assigned to Gitmo." 
  11. "Bagram detainees". Department of Defense. 2009-09-22. Archived from the original on 2010-01-17. 

External links