The Other Black Hole

Many of you know that I seem to spend an inordinate amount of time discussing matters of American detention policy with an emphasis on the tropical resort we have consigned our military to run at the Eastern tip of Cuba; I do this because that particular facility, from an information standpoint, is relatively accessible. The guests of that resort have attorneys who have e-mail addresses and phone numbers and are sometimes willing to talk to me; some former soldiers have written books, and journalists have visited from time to time.
Regular readers are well aware that the United States also maintains a network of similar gulags legal black holes around the world (an archipelago, if you will) with Guantanamo Bay (GTMO) simply being the best known (and physically the closest). Eliza Griswold, writing in TNR online, gives us this account of one of the largest of these black holes, our facility at an American run air-base in Bagram, Afghanistan.
Of course, you know this from, for example, our interview with Stephen Grey, a journalist who has tracked and studied this network of legal black-holes, or of course, our interviews with Shafiq Rasul or Moazzam Begg, both of whom were early guests at Bagram and other black holes, as well as GTMO.
One interesting development seems to be that after over five years, the military seems to have taken to realizing that Bagram (and GTMO for that matter) is unlikely to be a “temporary” detention facility, but instead intended to remain open as long as George W. Bush is President… or far, far longer. And that as nasty a place as GTMO is… Bagram makes it look nice by comparison. And again… at least we know about Bagram’s existence (even if not, exactly, who we are holding there.)
Understand, of course, that not a single person at Bagram has ever been tried or found guilty of anything… unlike Guantanamo, where a single person has pleaded guilty to something (albeit a crime that didn’t exist when he was apprehended, and which, after over five years detained, carried a nine-month sentence.) Nonetheless, quite a few guests have apparently been held at Bagram for years, with little, if any, hope of release.
Just something else to think about, as we ponder wtf has happened to our country.