Joy Reid: During Bush Era, We Were 'Starving' GITMO Prisoners

May 11th, 2019 11:01 PM

Not just a lie—a scurrilous slander.

On her MSNBC show today, Joy Reid claimed that "during the Bush era, we were . . . starving people in Guantanamo."

The truth is precisely the opposite. During the Bush era, Guantanamo officials took forceful measures to prevent people from starving. A number of prisoners had gone on hunger strikes to protest prison conditions. Among their complaints: "the prison authorities broadcast the call to prayers only four times daily, rather than the required five for religious obligations and . . . many of the detainees resented when women GIs broadcast the call to prayer."

Rather than let the prisoners starve themselves to death, the prison officials force-fed them. There has actually been criticism of the force-feeding practice. But be that as it may, it is the precise obverse of starving the prisoners.

For good measure, MSNBC analyst Malcolm Nance condemned President Trump's recent pardon of former Army Lt. Michael Behanna, who was convicted of in 2008 having killed an Iraqi prisoner suspected of being an Al Qaeda terrorist. Nance insinuated that Trump granted the pardon for purposes of " greenlighting actual offenses by people who support their side."  



Nance, like Reid, tramples the truth. The offense in question took place nine years before Trump took office. Behanna's sentence had already been reduced by a military appeals court concerned about the fairness of his trial. He was paroled--released from prison--five years ago.

The pardon came after a raft of public officials, including 37 retired generals and admirals, expressed support for it. Among them was Admiral Anthony Zinni, whose name had been floated as a possible Obama VP running mate in 2008, and whom Obama at one point proposed as Ambassador to Iraq.

Note: Nance concluded his spiel with the clichéd-by-now accusation that we are in "a very dangerous time" in which President Trump is "the leader of a banana republic."

Slurs, slanders, and lies: SOP for the likes of Reid and her crowd. 

Here's the transcript.

Joy Reid
10:14 am EDT

JOY REID: During the Bush era we were torturing people in our custody in Iraq, et cetera. And you know starving people in Guantanamo. 

. . . 

MALCOLM NANCE: Well if you remember, in the Bush era, when they were actually torturing people, as you said: they were waterboarding people, they were abusing people, we had murders. As a matter of fact, Donald Trump just pardoned an Army officer who was tried in military courts and convicted of murder. He literally kidnapped  a prisoner, took him out and shot him to death. So, these are now where the White House is giving them a green light. And they are greenlighting actual offenses that are being done by people who support their side. But the chilling effect, as you say, is coming from they're going to investigate anyone that outs these terrible offensive things that come from the other side or that comes from the government bureaucracy . . . We are in a very dangerous time in the United States, where the President of the United States, as you say, is the leader of a banana republic.