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Tipsheet

DeSantis Handles Question About Allegations From Former GITMO Detainee in True Form

AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo

Speaking to the Israeli press, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis called a reporter’s question about his military service at Guantanamo Bay “total B.S.” 

The question centered on a claim in the London Independent from a former detainee who alleged DeSantis observed in at least one instance “brutal force-feeding methods” employed during a hunger strike in 2006.

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Mansoor Adayfi describes it as one of the worst stretches of his 14-year imprisonment at Guantanamo Bay. In 2006, he was in the midst of a hunger strike with a number of his fellow detainees in protest over the conditions inside the notorious prison. A new team had been brought in to break the strike with a more aggressive form of force-feeding. One day, he recounts with emotion in his voice, he was strapped to a chair in the yard by his head, hands, waist and feet, and a feeding tube was forced into his nose. He was bleeding and vomiting and screaming while an assortment of uniformed military personnel watched from the side.

Years later, now released from the camp without charge and trying to rebuild his life in Serbia, Adayfi came across a photograph online of someone he says he recognised from that day. Until then, he says he knew the man as a young Navy lawyer stationed at the prison, but now he had a name: Ron DeSantis, the governor of Florida.

Adayfi says that the same man had watched the terrible episode unfold from behind a chain link fence.

“He was watching, and I was really screaming, crying,” Mr Adayfi, a Yemeni, tells The Independent in a lengthy video interview from his home in Belgrade. “I was bleeding and throwing up. We were in the block yard, so they were close to the fence.” (London Independent)

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After knocking the claim, DeSantis turned around to grill the reporter. 

“Do you honestly believe that’s credible? So this is 2006, I’m a junior officer. Do you honestly think that they would have remembered me from Adam? Of course not. They’re just trying to get into the news, because they know people like you will consume it, because it fits your pre-ordained narrative that you’re trying to spin. Focus on the facts and stop worrying about the narrative."


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