Miami Herald: Guantánamo prison: A primer

The Pentagon has built a series of facilities at Guantánamo Bay since it inaugurated its offshore detention and interrogation center for terrorist suspects in January 2002 by airlifting from Afghanistan to Cuba, and housing the first 300 or more temporarily at Camp X-Ray. In early 2011, House Armed Services Committee chairman Rep. Buck McKeon, R-Calif., declared the prison camp infrastructure had an overall capacity to confine 800 captives. Prison leadership said recently that with closures, degraded facilities and ongoing renovation, the capacity was at most 250, but could be much smaller depending on the gender, affiliations and nations of origin of any new detainees: Here’s a breakdown of the known lockups and other buildings, with best estimates of the current detainee population:

Detention Center Headquarters: The prison’s senior staff work at the Intelligence Operations Facility, or IOF, the command-and-control center for the estimated 1,900 military and contract workers at the detention center complex that today houses 60 foreign men as captives. The state-of-the-art building known as the Red Roof Inn was built in 2004 for $13.5 million. It’s not far from the Seaside Galley dining facility for prison staff where the captives’ meals are also prepared. The commander and his deputies occupy space in this eavesdrop-proof structure, the best and most technologically equipped building at the Navy base on a space far from the downtown at the site called Radio Range. It has video-conferencing, the staff judge advocate and a public affairs officer. Based on testimony at the war court’s Camp Justice compound, miles away, it also receives a live feed of military commissions proceedings so the jailers can monitor testimony and arguments in the cases against their captives. The public affairs staff reported in September 2016 that it has a plaque with steel from the World Trade Center, presented to the staff by the firefighter father of two sons killed on 9/11 as well as a framed “Flag of Honor” inscribed with former prison commander Rear Adm. Richard Butler’s name — an American flag whose stripes are made up of the names of every single person who was killed on Sept. 11, 2001.  Opened: 2004.

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