Judge: Pentagon Can Keep Gitmo Costs Secret

Justification of Secrecy Is Itself Secret

US District Judge Beryl Howell has rejected a FOIA lawsuit seeking information on the costs of building and maintaining the detention center at Guantanamo Bay, saying the Pentagon is entitled to keep it secret.

The Pentagon responded to the initial FOIA request from the Miami Herald in 2010, saying they had a single one page document which contained the sought information, but that the entirety of it was classified.

That sparked the lawsuit, and the Pentagon filed a document arguing in favor of the secrecy. The court document was itself classified by the Pentagon, and the name of the official who filed the document was itself kept secret.

Judge Howell’s ruling didn’t involve any actual explanation for why the facility’s costs should be secret, but simply insisted that he saw no evidence of “bad faith” by the Pentagon in keeping it secret.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.