Treatment of Gitmo prisoners was merely "unpleasant," and not abuse
A comprehensive, bipartisan report found the U.S. tortured prisoners after 9/11
In 2013, a bipartisan group released a comprehensive report on interrogation and detention practices after 9/11 that found prisoners in U.S. custody had been tortured, including those held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. In fact, The Washington Post reported in 2009 that the Bush administration official charged with deciding whether to try Guantanamo detainees had declined to do so in one case because the detainee had been tortured:
The top Bush administration official in charge of deciding whether to bring Guantanamo Bay detainees to trial has concluded that the U.S. military tortured a Saudi national who allegedly planned to participate in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, interrogating him with techniques that included sustained isolation, sleep deprivation, nudity and prolonged exposure to cold, leaving him in a "life-threatening condition."
"We tortured [Mohammed al-]Qahtani," said Susan J. Crawford, in her first interview since being named convening authority of military commissions by Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates in February 2007. "His treatment met the legal definition of torture. And that's why I did not refer the case" for prosecution.
On a couple of occassions, I entered interview rooms to find a detainee chained hand and foot in a fetal position to the floor, with no chair, food, or water. Most times they had urinated or defacated on themselves and had been left there for 18, 24 hours or more. On one occassion, the air conditioning had been turned down so far and the temperature was so cold in the room, that the barefooted detainee was shaking with cold. When I asked the [military police guards] what was going on, I was told that interrogators from the day prior had ordered this treatment, and the detainee was not to be moved. On another occassion, the A/C had been turned off, making the temperature in the unventilated room probably well over 100 degrees. The detainee was almost unconscious on the floor with a pile of hair next to him. He had apparently been literally pulling his own hair out throughout the night.