‘Innocent’ Gitmo Detainee Suddenly Becomes Jihadi Warrior

When Abu al-Hareth Muhammad al-Oufi was imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay, he loudly, continually protested his innocence. He claimed he was on his way to Pakistan to help refugees, out of the kindness of his heart.

Now that he’s resurfaced in Yemen as an Al Qaeda fighter, suddenly his story has changed: Former Gitmo Detainee Hailed as ‘Fomenter of War’.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico�—� Before he was released from Guantanamo, a Saudi detainee insisted he had only wanted to help refugees and was not a fighter. Now, as an Al Qaeda field commander sporting a bandolier of bullets, he is threatening the United States and has been hailed by a militant Web site as a veteran guerrilla and “a fomenter of war.”

The story of Abu al-Hareth Muhammad al-Oufi underscores the dilemma Barack Obama’s administration finds itself in: Keeping men locked up without trials invites global criticism but releasing them without a fair and diligent process to distinguish enemies from noncombatants exposes the U.S. and its allies to danger. It also shows how hard it is to separate truth from lies.

“Hard to separate truth from lies?” Oh yeah, it’s incredibly difficult. Who would have imagined that Islamic terrorists might actually lie?

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