National Security Brief: Gitmo Officials Add Detainee To Forced Tube Feed List

The U.S. military announced on Tuesday that 46 detainees on hunger strike at Guantanamo Bay on the list of those approved for forced tube feeding, up one from Monday’s count.

The number of those currently on hunger strike hovered at 80 after dozens decided to break their protest in recent days. It is unclear why these detainees ended their hunger strike. Gitmo officials have suggested that relaxed rules on communal living influenced their decision while others have said that perhaps Ramadan has played role.

Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal reports:

After 11 years of detention at Guantanamo Bay, suspected terrorist Sufiyan Barhoumi has decided to plead guilty to war crimes, throw himself on the mercy of the court and serve whatever sentence a U.S. military commission deems just.


There’s just one problem: The Pentagon refuses to charge him.

The standoff illustrates the legal quagmire surrounding the offshore prison — even as President Barack Obama renews his long-stymied quest to close it.

In other news:

  • The Hill reports: Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) is mounting a push this week to defund the surveillance programs at the National Security Agency. Amash said Monday that the defense appropriations bill, which could come to the House floor this week, was a chance to stop the NSA’s “unconstitutional spying on Americans.”
  • McClatchy reports: The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency warned Lebanese officials last week that al Qaida-linked groups are planning a campaign of bombings that will target Beirut’s Hezbollah-dominated southern suburbs as well as other political targets associated with the group or its allies in Syria, Lebanese officials said Monday.
  • Politico reports: Sens. Rand Paul and Ted Cruz have joined an upstart effort to remove the chain of command from military sexual assault cases.
  • The AP reports: Israel condemned new guidelines by the European Union on Tuesday which ban EU funding and cooperation with Israeli institutions that operate in territory captured by the Jewish state in the 1967 Mideast war. In order to obtain EU funding from 2014, Israeli projects will be required to sign on to a clause stipulating they operate within the country’s pre-1967 borders and not in east Jerusalem, the West Bank or Golan Heights.
  • The Financial Times reports: Benjamin Netanyahu faces a domestic political scandal with possible international repercussions after news emerged that his government withdrew a witness in a US lawsuit brought on behalf of terrorism victims after facing pressure from China.
  • The New York Times reports: At least seven people were killed and more than 200 were injured in overnight clashes between Islamists and Egyptian riot police, health officials said on Tuesday. After days without major violence, the clashes highlighted the growing political disaffection among supporters of Egypt’s former president, Mohamed Morsi, who was ousted by the military almost two weeks ago.