Guantanamo Bay detainees ‘eat fresh’

GUANTANAMO BAY NAVAL BASE, Cuba – Enticing detainees with movies and fast food, interrogators at Guantanamo Bay have developed relationships that produce vital information in the campaign against terrorism, the prison camp’s top intelligence official said.

About one-third of the detainees – most of whom have been held at the prison for nearly five years without charge – are still interrogated, said Paul Rester, director of the Joint Intelligence Group at Guantanamo Bay. They offer details about the structure of terror networks and the terrain of countries where they operate.

“What we confront is human and it’s dynamic, and knowledge does not in fact perish with time,” Rester said Tuesday in an interview with The Associated Press at the U.S. base in southeast Cuba.

Rester said the military allows detainees to skip scheduled interrogation sessions, and as many as five opt out on a typical day.

For some detainees, getting to leave their cells is an incentive to participate, he said. Most detainees at Guantanamo are confined for up to 22 hours a day.

Those who cooperate have been allowed to eat sandwiches from a Subway restaurant on the base and watch movies and soccer games in interrogation rooms, Rester said.

He said abuse during interrogations was not common.

The U.S. says it now holds about 430 men at Guantanamo on suspicion of links to al-Qaida or the Taliban.