What follows are some photos and news articles related to GITMO and the C-141.
January 11, 2002 Posted: 11:28 PM EST (0428 GMT)
GUANTANAMO BAY, Cuba (CNN) -- Twenty Afghan war detainees arrived here Friday and were led off a C-141 transport plane in shackles by U.S. military personnel.
The prisoners -- the military prefers to call them detainees -- will be held at first in outdoor cells with concrete floors and wooden ceilings surrounded by a chain-link fence until a more permanent facility is ready.
A bus with about 40 Marines, Navy medics and security personnel wearing face masks and Kevlar vests met the aircraft carrying the detainees who left Kandahar, Afghanistan, the previous day.
Humvees and troops with grenade launchers and machine guns formed a security perimeter around the area.
The Taliban and al Qaeda captives stepped off the plane one by one, dressed in turquoise blue face masks, orange ski caps and fluorescent orange jumpsuits, their hands in manacles.
As U.S. military personnel frisked each detainee, some resisted, falling to their knees before being picked up by their necks.
Following the deplaning, the detainees were loaded onto a bus and then a ferry that took them to Camp X-Ray, where a detention center is being constructed on the U.S. naval base.
They will be photographed, fingerprinted and interrogated before being led to individual 6-foot-by-8-foot outdoor cages -- their temporary home until the center is completed.
All the detainees were being treated as if they were prisoners of war, although the Pentagon has not declared them as POWs under the Geneva Convention.
Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Friday the captives were considered "unlawful combatants" and have no rights under the convention.
"We do plan to, for the most part, treat them in a manner that is reasonably consistent with the Geneva Conventions, to the extent they are appropriate, and that is exactly what we have been doing," Rumsfeld said.
The detainees were chained to their seats for the 8,000-mile plane trip and even barred from using the toilets, with special provisions being made so they would not have to get up. They were shaved from head to toe for hygiene considerations.
Some of those held at Guantanamo Bay likely will face a military tribunal, a prospect that has generated criticism from civil rights advocates.
The humanitarian group Amnesty International issued a statement Thursday afternoon objecting to the heavy restraints on the prisoners during the flight.
"Reports that al Qaeda and Taliban prisoners may be drugged, hooded and shackled during the 20-hour flight is worrying," the group said.
"If restraints are necessary, they must be applied humanely, with adequate opportunity for the prisoner to move limbs, use the bathroom and eat and drink."
Rumsfeld said Friday the prisoners' rights were not violated and that only one was sedated during the trip to Guantanamo. Pentagon officials said the restraints on the prisoners were justified.
"These are people that would gnaw through hydraulic lines in the back of a C-17 to bring it down," said Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. "So these are very, very dangerous people, and that's how they're being treated."
The Guantanamo base can currently house 100 prisoners but soon will accommodate 2,000. In 1994, tens of thousands of Cuban and Haitian migrants were held at the base after being picked up while trying to sail to Florida.
The United States occupied Guantanamo Bay, discovered by the Europeans in 1494, during the Spanish-American War of 1898 and established a base there.
In 1903, the United States leased the land from the Republic of Cuba. Under the agreement now in effect, the United States can retain possession as long as it pays the annual rent.
January 13, 2002 Posted: 8:01 AM EST (1301 GMT)
GUANTANAMO BAY, Cuba (CNN) -- Twenty Afghan war detainees spent a "calm and peaceful" first night in a temporary detention center -- 6-by-8 chain-link cells on the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the head of security for the detention center said Saturday.
Col. Terry Carrico -- the self-described warden of "Camp X-Ray," the temporary detention compound -- said the inmates carried on some conversation after their arrival Friday afternoon from Afghanistan but were "very fatigued" and slept the night for the most part.
"[Friday] night was very peaceful; I would say it was calm and peaceful," Carrico said. "Once we issued comfort items and got them in their individual units, they were prone, sleeping."
Hundreds of captured al Qaeda and Taliban fighters are expected to be housed at a specially designed facility at a U.S. base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. CNN's Bob Franken reports (January 11)
He described security conditions at the camp as "firm and fair," saying he was confident in his troops' abilities and in plans to oversee the prisoners.
"We have positive control of these individuals," he said. "We'll outnumber them whenever they're out of their cells. I'm very confident we have the situation well in hand."
The 20 prisoners were manacled and wore fluorescent orange jump suits, orange ski caps and surgical masks Friday as they were led off the U.S. Air Force C-141 transport plane that brought them to Cuba.
About 40 Marines and Navy medics as well as security personnel, wearing face masks and Kevlar vests, met them on the tarmac. A security perimeter was formed with Humvees, soldiers with machine guns, and grenade launchers.
The surgical masks were necessary, according to Maj. Steve Cox of the U.S. Marine Corps, because several detainees have tested positive for tuberculosis, but Carrico said Saturday that there were no confirmed cases of TB. The detainees will be given chest X-rays to determine the presence of the disease.
The detainees also wore blacked-out goggles with tape over their eyes. U.S. military personnel frisked each detainee, and some resisted, falling to their knees. They were picked up by their necks amid much shouting.
The shouting, Cox said, came from Arabic translators, who tried to penetrate the earplugs worn by captives due to the high level of noise on the flight.
After getting off the plane, the detainees were loaded onto a bus and then a ferry for the ride to Camp X-Ray. They received medical exams and showers and were photographed, fingerprinted and interrogated before being led to individual outdoor cages. They will be kept there until a permanent detention center can be built.
The "cells" have a chain-link fence perimeter, a concrete floor and a wooden roof but are otherwise open to the elements. The U.S. military sprayed the complex to try to eradicate mosquitoes.
The detainees have a foam rubber sleeping mat and two towels -- one for bathing and another for a prayer mat, Cox said. They also will receive a bar of soap, a squeeze bottle of shampoo, a toothbrush and toothpaste, and flip-flop sandals for showers.
Carrico added that the prisoners will be given a copy of the Koran as part of their "comfort items."
As for meals, Cox said, there will be three per day. Breakfast and dinner will be hot meals, with water as a beverage. They'll also have access to cereal, raisins, peanuts and granola bars.
Another 30 detainees arrived Saturday at the airport in Kandahar, Afghanistan, where Camp X-Ray's new residents were held before their flight to Cuba. The total being held at the Kandahar airfield is 391.
The Guantanamo base, 45 square miles of barren land on the edge of cliffs high above the Caribbean Sea, is a secure and remote facility on the southeastern end of Cuba. More than 3,000 U.S. military service members, civilians and their families live at the base.
The United States wrested Guantanamo Bay -- discovered by Europeans in 1494 -- from the Spanish during the Spanish-American War of 1898 and established a base there. In 1903, the United States leased the land from the Republic of Cuba. Under the agreement now in effect, the United States can retain possession as long as it pays the annual rent.