Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Club Gitmo

A letter in the Wall Street Journal:

David B. Rivkin and Lee A. Casey are right in pointing out the drawbacks in closing Guantanamo ("Why It's So Hard to Close Gitmo," op-ed. May 30). One more comes to my mind: Although the hostile press depicts this detention center as nothing less than an American version of a concentration camp, for at least one woman in Russia it is a place where she is delighted to have her son confined.

A Reuters dispatch from Moscow, dated Aug. 8, 2003, reported that Amina Khasanova, whose son was a detainee there, told a Russian newspaper that she was "terribly scared of a Russian prison or a Russian court" for him and hence presumably was in no hurry to have him released. "At Guantanamo they treat him humanely, the conditions are fine," she said.

Her son, Andrei Bakhitov, one of the eight Russian detainees at Guantanamo, had written her: "I think that there is not even a health resort in Russia on the level of this place."

Richard Pipes

Cambridge, Mass.

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