Strawberry Fields (Guantanamo)

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In 2003 a secret compound was constructed near the main Guantanamo Bay detention camps, in Cuba, to hold CIA detainees, known as Strawberry fields.[1][2][3] Matt Apuzzo and Adam Goldman, in an exclusive report for the Associated Press, reported that "high value detainees" Abu Zubaydah, Abd al-Nashiri, Ramzi bin al-Shibh and Mustafa al-Hawsawi were transferred to Guantanamo on September 24, 2003. They reported that the CIA thought they had learned the bulk of the information to be extracted from these individuals, and, at the time, they thought the men could be held securely in Guantanamo, without any prospect of the public learning that they had been subjected to "waterboarding", and other controversial interrogation techniques.

When describing the camp, in August 2009, David Johnston and Mark Mazetti, writing in the New York Times, quoted CIA officials, who said that the camp's nickname was a sly reference to the Beatles' song "Strawberry Fields Forever", because the detainees would be held there "forever".[3]

However, as the habeas corpus petitions collectively known as Rasul v. Bush made their way to the United States Supreme Court the four men were returned to CIA custody.[1] Apuuzo and Goldman report they were returned to CIA custody three months before the Supreme Court's ruling would have compelled information about their status to start to be shared. According to Scott Horton, writing for Harper's magazine, the men were removed from Guantanamo on March 27, 2004.[4] Horton described the men's covert removal as an instance of "Three-Card Monte at Gitmo".

In January 2006 US District Court Judge Jed S. Rakoff ruled that the United States Department of Defense would have to publish a list of all the detainees held in Guantanamo by March 3, 2006. In fact the DoD published a list of 759 names on May 15, 2006.[5] This list does not include Abu Zubaydah, Abd al-Nashiri, Ramzi bin al-Shibh or Mustafa al-Hawsawi.

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 Matt Apuzzo, Adam Goldman (2010-08-07). "AP Exclusive: CIA flight carried secret from Gitmo". Associated Press.  mirror
  2. Ben Schott (2009-08-13). "Strawberry Fields: A disturbing C.I.A. nickname for the Guantánamo Bay detention centre.". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-03-16.  mirror
  3. 3.0 3.1 David Johnston, Mark Mazetti (2009-08-12). "Interrogation Inc.: A Window Into C.I.A.’s Embrace of Secret Jails". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-03-16.  mirror
  4. Scott Horton (2010-08-06). "Three-Card Monte at Gitmo". Harper's magazine. Retrieved 2010-08-11.  mirror
  5. OARDEC. "List of Individuals Detained by the Department of Defense at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba from January 2002 through May 15, 2006". United States Department of Defense. Retrieved 2006-05-15.