Guantanamo architect: Gitmo was a mistake

August 4, 2013

Image of detainees in Guantanamo bay

William Lietzau, formerly America’s Deputy Assistant Defence Secretary for Detainee Affairs, has told the Mail on Sunday that if he had his time over he would never have opened the now-infamous prison.

Mr Lietzau, who announced his resignation last week, was a key architect of the so-called ‘war on terror’ and the US prison at Guantanamo Bay. In his exclusive interview with David Rose Mr Lietzau now admits that both were a mistake.  

Cori Crider, Reprieve’s Strategic Director, commented:

“Lietzau’s right: the ‘war on terror’ was misguided and counterproductive from the start. The shrinking numbers of Americans who defend Guantánamo need to sit up and listen – now one of Gitmo’s legal architects says it should never have been opened. Of course we can’t un-torture people or give prisoners back their lost years, but we can stop making these terrible mistakes. Obama just needs to send the cleared men home, which will end the hunger strike and stop the degrading force-feeding of prisoners.”


Notes to editors

1. For further information, please contact Clemency Wells in Reprieve’s press office: +44 (0) 207 553 8161 /66 / +44 (0) 7739 188 097