"Seventeen of the 241 terrorist detainees currently being held at Guantanamo Bay are Chinese Muslims known as Uighurs. These Uighurs have been allied with and trained by al Qaeda-affiliated terrorist groups. (1) The goal of the Uighurs is to establish a separate sharia state. (2) (...)
At Guantanamo Bay, the Uighurs are known for picking up television sets on which women with bared arms appear and hurling them across the room. (3) (...)
By their own admission, Uighurs being held at Guantanamo Bay are members of or associated with the Eastern Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM) (4), an al Qaeda-affiliated group designated as a terrorist organization under U.S law. (...) (5)
Prior to 9/11, the Uighurs received jihadist training in Tora Bora, Afghanistan, a known al Qaeda and Taliban training ground. (6) What's more, they were trained, most likely in the weapons, explosives and ideology of mass killing, by Abdul Haq, a member of al Qaeda's shura , or top advisory council. (7) President Obama's own interagency review board found that at least some of the Uighurs are dangerous. (8) (...)
Even if you accept the argument made by their defenders that the Uighurs' true targets are Chinese, not Americans, it does nothing to change the fact that they are trained mass killers instructed by the same terrorists responsible for killing 3,000 Americans on September 11, 2001. (9)"
Taking these claims in order:
(1) "These Uighurs have been allied with and trained by al Qaeda-affiliated terrorist groups." The Uighurs deny that they were members of the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, which is the "al Qaeda-affiliated group" the government accuses them of being "affiliated" with. They were present at what is variously described as a camp or a village where Uighurs were trained by the ETIM. From this brief (pdf):
"The village itself was no more than a handful of houses bisected by dirt tracks. Each Petitioner, as well as five Uighurs who would later be determined non-combatants, lived in this village in October, 2001. In return for food and shelter, the Uighur men did odd jobs and manual labor. They helped build houses and a mosque."
The training consisted in being taught to assemble and disassemble a rifle, and (in some cases) firing a few rounds from it. From the same brief:
"In the village there was a single AK-47 Kalashnikov rifle and a pistol. Sixteen of the eighteen Uighurs (including all Petitioners and all five of the Uighurs later determined to be noncombatants) freely admit that they were shown the Kalashnikov, and how to assemble and disassemble the weapon. Some engaged in target practice. (Akhtar Qassim, later determined not to be an enemy combatant, shot three or four rounds.)"
From this CSRT transcript:
"Q. What other activities were going on at the camp?
A. There was no typical training, whoever volunteered, once in a while people would run or exercise. I would carry wood, water came from far away, bring stone to build houses.
Q. I want to make sure that I understand, you only trained on the rifle for two or three days between the time you arrived and the time you left the camp?
A. I don't remember the exact date, maybe June 10th or the end of June. One day they showed us an old rusty rifle for about a half hour. Then the second day we shot three to five bullets."
"Abbas, however, says that the detainee who went off on the TV has already been released to Albania and that it had nothing to do with any bare arms. Rather, he had repeatedly requested to speak to camp supervisors and had been ignored, so he chose to cause a scene."
"To support the contention that Parhat was "part of or supporting" ETIM, the government relies on evidence that comes almost entirely from Parhat’s own statements and those of other Uighur detainees. Parhat stated that, when he decided to leave China, he headed for a Uighur camp, widely known in Xinjiang province, that was located in the Tora Bora mountains of Afghanistan. See CSRT Exhibit R7, at 1-2 (App. 51-52) (FBI interview report dated May 11, 2002). At the camp, he received training on a Kalashnikov rifle and a pistol, which “consisted of weapon disassembly and cleaning,” Pet'r Br. 18 n.22 (quoting CSRT Exhibit R3, at 2 (App. 37))3; performed guard duty, see CSRT Exhibit R7, at 2 (App. 52); and helped to build a house, see CSRT Decision, encl. 3, at 6 (App. 24). He sought the training, he said, only to fight the Chinese government. Id. encl. 1, at 2 (App. 12); id. encl. 3, at 3-4 (App. 21-22).
Parhat testified that a man named Hassan Maksum, whom the government has identified as a leader of ETIM, was a leader at the camp. See id. encl. 3, at 6 (App. 24). Parhat maintains that the fact that Maksum was a leader of the camp is not enough to make it an "ETIM camp," and that the kind of activities in which Parhat participated at the camp are not enough to establish that he was "part of or supporting" ETIM. The government argues to the contrary."
"Parhat’s own statement was that the camp was given to the Uighurs by the "Afghani Government." CSRT Exhibit R6, at 1-2 (App. 49-50) (FBI interview report dated July 19, 2003).6 Of course, the Taliban was the "Afghani Government" in 2001, and not all entities provided with housing by that government -- which no doubt ranged from orphanages to terrorist organizations like al Qaida -- were “associated” with the Taliban in a sense that would make them enemy combatants."
"Although the report states that Basit said he had been told that the camp was provided to the Uighurs by the Taliban, Parhat's appellate counsel has called our attention to evidence from another Uighur’s CSRT to the effect that the Uighur camp was actually in existence prior to the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan."
"As Part III indicates, the principal evidence against Parhat regarding the second and third elements of DOD’s definition of enemy combatant consists of four government intelligence documents. The documents make assertions -- often in haec verba -- about activities undertaken by ETIM, and about that organization's relationship to al Qaida and the Taliban. The documents repeatedly describe those activities and relationships as having "reportedly" occurred, as being "said to" or "reported to" have happened, and as things that "may" be true or are "suspected of" having taken place. But in virtually every instance, the documents do not say who "reported" or "said" or "suspected" those things. Nor do they provide any of the underlying reporting upon which the documents' bottom-line assertions are founded, nor any assessment of the reliability of that reporting. Because of those omissions, the Tribunal could not and this court cannot assess the reliability of the assertions in the documents. And because of this deficiency, those bare assertions cannot sustain the determination that Parhat is an enemy combatant."
"Parhat contends that the ultimate source of key assertions in the four intelligence documents is the government of the People’s Republic of China, and he offers substantial support for that contention. Parhat further maintains that Chinese reporting on the subject of the Uighurs cannot be regarded as objective, and offers substantial support for that proposition as well."