Al Qaida and Taliban Detainees Need Better Treatment In Guantanamo – Human Rights Group Is Given Access To Students Via Channel One

January 24, 2002
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A group called the Human Rights Watch was on Channel One today. Young people got a dose of their ACLU-like rhetoric.

This group has been in the news recently saying that our government is absolutely wrong in how we are treating the Afghan detainees in Cuba.

Sec. of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has said that these detainees are not official prisoners of war since they are part of a terrorist group. HRW states on their web site that the housing for Taliban prisoners should EQUAL that of American soldiers stationed in Guantanamo. That means if an American soldier has a TV set in their room, the Taliban detainees should too. (Check out the Human Rights Watch web site.)

C1’s president of programming, Morgan Wandell, made the decision that this group needed to talk to America’s young people. Here is part of today’s script from Channel One’s web site:

EARLIER I SPOKE WITH PEOPLE ON EITHER SIDE OF THIS ISSUE…
[split screen](ON CAM ENDS)
TOM MALINOWSKI OF HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH… AND MARINE CORPS MAJOR STEVE COX, WHO’S
BASED AT GUANTANAMO BAY.
[sot seth181543]
specifically what problems are you concerned about there?
[sot malinowski 181547]
The main problem has been that the conditions of their confinement involve what are basically metal cages that are open on the sides to the elements so if it rains these people get wet, and it’s really not a question of having any sympathy for this group of detainees, they don’t want our sympathy they want us dead probably, the real issue here is protecting a set of rules that protect Americans and everybody else whoa re captured overseas. These rules are there to protect the good guys as well as the bad guys.
[v/o stills or video of prisoners]
BUT MAJOR COX TOLD ME THAT THE PRISONERS WILL EVENTUALLY BE MOVING INTO BETTER
QUARTERS.
[sot over graphic cox 5801]
First let me say that camp X-ray is a temp. facility – it’s not meant to be a long term facility – ahh, in the future we will have a modular constructed facility that will have walls – will have air conditioning, climate control for the individual units.
[prisoners]
AND MAJOR COX SAID SOME OF THOSE BEING HELD **STILL** ARE DANGEROUS.
[sot cox 170218]
We’ve had several detainees make several threats to our guards to express their intention to attempt to do harm or kill a U-S servicemember// i can assure you that we will not present that opportunity to them.

[TAG GUANTANAMO]

Just like the January 23 article about Channel One sending children mixed messages about cheating, this article sends a confusing message to children who range from 10 to 18. In another part of the script, Channel One tells children that some in Europe call our treatment of Al Qaida and Taliban detainees “torture.” Of course, they “balance” out such outrageous statements by quoting Donald Rumsfeld saying that isn’t so.

Jim Metrock president of Obligation said, “What Channel One did today underscores the reason most school boards across our country have rejected them. Control of the classroom is turned over to the Hollywood studio of Channel One. If Channel One’s Morgan Wandell wants a wacky group to spout off their gripes against the United States, then that group will be talking to our kids on Channel One. Local communities have no say when it comes to Channel One’s content. I am a conservative Southern who has been watching and reporting on Channel One since 1996. I can say without equivocation that it is sickening to watch Channel One News.”