Waterboarding and other 'Decision Points' in Bush's war on terror

Controversial 'Decisions Points' during George W. Bush's tenure, including his green light to waterboarding, have returned to public scrutiny.

By , Staff writer

Guantánamo Bay

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    The entrance to Camp Delta at Guantánamo Bay is seen on Oct. 24.
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George W. Bush in 2002 authorized Guantánamo Bay, Cuba as a holding place for terrorism suspects. It was seen as a place beyond the reach of most US constitutional protections.

According to a book review in The New York Times, Mr. Bush "tries to play down the problems of Guantánamo Bay, writing that detainees were given 'a personal copy of the Koran' and access to a library among whose popular offerings was 'an Arabic translation of Harry Potter.' "

Prisoners at the detention center have said conditions are harsh, illegal, and inhumane. Bush said in 2005 that he was open to closing Guantanamo, and the number of detainees dropped in half to fewer than 300 by the time he left office.

On President Obama's second day in office, he ordered the Guantánamo detention camp closed within a year. Nearly two years later, however, the camp remains open amid dispute over where to transfer the remaining 174 detainees for prosecution.

During the Monitor's tour of the facility in 2009, "detainees noticed camp officials talking with two reporters who were taking notes.

One detainee began to shout. "Liar! Liar! Liar!" Another detainee on a wing on the other side of the recreation area joined in: "He is lying." Within moments, at least eight bearded detainees were pressing their faces close to the thick glass in the narrow windows in their individual cells, shouting to the reporters. "He is lying. He is lying."

Soon a chant went up. "Liar. Liar. Liar."

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