There's a new front in the global war on terror: ice cream for suspected terrorists. The U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, has begun rationing the amount of ice cream that can be given to its 147 detainees. The Miami Herald's Carol Rosenberg photographs a refrigerator at Gitmo with two signs reading "DETAINEE FOOD ONLY" and "Only 1 Ice Cream For each detainee!" The somewhat questionable capitalization decisions aside, here are the details.
Rosenberg writes, "Found this fridge for Guantanamo detainee food in the rotunda of Camp 6, the most populous of the U.S. Navy base prison camps on Sept. 23, 2010 with nearly 90 captives." The feeding of U.S. detainees suspected of terrorism has been a fraught and complicated issue for much of the nine-year war on terror. Early detainees were given barely enough food to survive, angering human rights advocates who said the underfeeding could represent torture. Later, some Guantanamo detainees have attempted to starve themselves or go on hunger strikes, prompting U.S. military doctors to force-feed the inmates--a practice that can be extremely painful.
"Until recently the prison camps boasted on their web site that they provided the 174 war on terror detainees with 5,500 - 6,000 calories a day," Rosenberg writes. It's unclear if the dessert rationing is related to Guantanamo Bay quietly removing its calorie information. But what's motivating the decision to ration ice cream? Is the Pentagon finally delivering on Secretary of Defense Robert Gates' pledge to reduce spending? Or perhaps some of the greedier detainees were taking more than their fair share. We hear that KSM absolutely loves Chubby Hubby.