Patterico has the continuation of his interview with Stashiu (Patterico’s post is actually part III). In this post, Stashiu discusses how the detainees tried to commit suicide to make a political statement and how the Gitmo staff worked tirelessly to prevent the detainees from succeeding:
Was there a genuine effort to prevent suicides and deaths from hunger strikes?
“Not on my watch” was the biggest goal for most of us. Many of us felt that without major changes in policy the AQ leadership would eventually find a way. We just weren’t going to let it happen while we were there.
The rotation that replaced us was a fine group and would have done everything they could to protect the detainees. I believe the detainees just timed things to take advantage of the new rotation before they had learned all the tricks. The detainees tried when we came in and we had a very sharp learning curve. I believe that the timing of the attempted suicides, the attack on the guard force with the staged suicide [more on this below — P], and the successful suicides [were] not an accident.
I believe that those men were ordered to die after months of planning. They knew when new personnel came in and waited until everything could come together. If the personnel rotation had happened a month or two later, I’m certain the suicides would have been a month or two later as well. It was one of the factors they waited for because our rotation was aware of most of their ruses.
It’s amazing the lengths that the Gitmo doctors go to save the lives of terrorists whose goals are to kill as many Americans as possible:
Colonel Bumgarner did a thankless job in the best way he could and I am proud to have worked with him. The only surprise in the article was that he used to be a quarterback because he’s built like a lineman. It’s only after you get to know the man that you realize how smart he is. Every day there was [a] new challenge as the AQ leaders probed for weaknesses. Without his efforts, many more of the detainees would have been dead by their own hands. Honestly, I was amazed that it took so long and that we kept everyone alive during our time there, sometimes by the skin of our teeth. . . . Some wouldn’t have survived but for the skill and dedication of the doctors who were determined to save them.
Read the rest Patterico’s post.