Many of the prisoners were imprisoned, after the US gave cash awards to friendly Islamists....which prompted me to respond thusly:
Actually, it's even better than that. In Afghanistan, the Taliban were the Islamists. The Northern Alliance, whose warlords and tribal leaders were the ones who received the most and largest cash awards were not and are not Islamists. They're about as Muslim as I am Catholic, which is to say "not even remotely Catholic, but I hang around with a couple of guys who were raised Catholic and sometimes have a nice bit of wine and crackers on Sunday mornings."Adding... do we all remember what my first words were when I heard that the CIA had captured John Walker Lindh? I do. I said, "I wonder if we're going to pin a medal on him for taking the War Against Drugs seriously enough to go join the foreign legion?"
The Northern Alliance, let's remember, are the assholes who were pissed off with the Taliban mainly because, out of all the things that militant Islamist extremist fuckwits like to do when they have a seat in the United Nations, they cracked down on the opium farmers. The Northern Alliance tribal warlords made most of their money growing dope, and the Taliban — with the help of the U.S. under the Clinton administration, let's not forget— were working to eradicate the opium crop yields.
So, in comes the Bush Administration, 9/11 happens and do they negotiate a deal with the Taliban to have Osama bin Laden surrendered? No. The Taliban made an offer for such a deal; it was refused without even being considered.
Now, I'm not saying that the Bush Administration used 9/11 as an excuse to put the opium warlords back into power in Afghanistan, but that's who the CIA paid to capture all these Islamist suckers currently cooling their jets and enjoying the tasty lemon chicken at Guantánamo. The Taliban is out of power and the opium yields are higher than they ever were before the Taliban. You can draw your own conclusions.
My take is this: the Bush people insisted the Taliban had to go, but they also insisted that it be done with a minimal commitment of force. Beyond that, they said, we don't care how you do it — just do it. The CIA said, um... we could use the Northern Alliance, but that would mean trading in the Taliban for a bunch of opium warlords. Is that okay with you? And the Bush people said, why are you people still standing here? Get the hell out of my office and do something! And that's how we got where we are today.
Remember, they picked him up because he had joined the Taliban army to fight against the Northern Alliance in the spring of 2001. Interestingly, he later confessed to having joined al-Qaeda. Considering how such confessions were routinely obtained from guys in his position in those days, and what tended to happen to those who didn't, I think even I would have confessed in his place. Probably a lot sooner than he did.