One piece of information that stands out from the latest trove of leaked documents on Guantanamo Bay out is the high number of “high risk” detainees who have been released or transferred into the custody of foreign countries:
The secret documents, made available to The New York Times and several other news organizations, reveal that most of the 172 remaining prisoners have been rated as a “high risk” of posing a threat to the United States and its allies if released without adequate rehabilitation and supervision. But they also show that an even larger number of the prisoners who have left Cuba – about a third of the 600 already transferred to other countries – were also designated “high risk” before they were freed or passed to the custody of other governments.
This may explain the recidivism rate we’ve seen over the past few years. The Bush administration released or transferred 532 prisoners and the Obama administration has released or transferred 68 detainees. A total of 82 former detainees have returned to terrorism, according the latest Pentagon calculations.
The documents also confirm what critics of closing Guantanamo Bay have been saying all along. Since most of the remaining 172 prisoners are considered high-risk, the administration is caught in a situation where it’s unable to prosecute the majority of prisoners in civilian court, and would also face a major risk by releasing them. This leaves Obama with no other option but to keep the detention center open.