Guantanamo Prison Commander Previously Ran U.S. Detention in Somalia
When Col. John Bogdan took the witness stand Wednesday morning in the military commission hearing at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, he’d been called to testify about the strict limits he’s imposed on defense attorneys’ visits with their death penalty clients. The attorneys representing the five defendants accused of masterminding the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks claim Bogdan’s rules make their jobs unreasonably onerous.
But as he reviewed his history with the U.S. military, Bogdan mentioned that he’s previously run U.S. detention operations in two other countries: Iraq and Somalia. The judge quickly steered him back to his role at Guantanamo.
While U.S. detention operations in Iraq are well-known, U.S. detention in Somalia is not. Although the U.S. has acknowledged detaining a Somali captive on a U.S. Navy ship off the Somali coast, the extent of U.S. detention operations in Somalia are unclear.