Cablegate: Letter From Kuwaiti Detainee at Abu Gharaib And
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 KUWAIT 003056
STATE FOR NEA/ARP, NEA/PD QUINN AND SMITH, S/CT MILLER AND
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PTER PGOV MARR KU IZ
SUBJECT: LETTER FROM KUWAITI DETAINEE AT ABU GHARAIB AND
FATHER'S RESPONSE--ANGUISHED REASSURANCE OR COMMITMENT TO
(U) SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED--PROTECT ACCORDINGLY
1. (U) Local Kuwaiti Arabic daily "Al Watan" published an
article September 8 reporting excerpts of a letter from
Abdarrahmane Al Badali, a Kuwaiti detained at Abu Gharaib
prison in Iraq, and the response from Al Badali's father.
The son's letter, poorly written in undereducated idiom,
asserts in nonetheless fulsome religious language that "he
has learned a lot in prison" and that one of his "Arab
brothers" has proposed that he marry his sister, following
this news with the words "I have changed my father, and
don't worry about the path I have chosen." The father
replies that his son's path is "filled with difficulties and
thorns," that he should study the Quran and "apply it to
your temporal world" and "pay no attention to those of us
outside, for we are in a deep slumber."
2. In response to a query by PAO to a senior editor in
Kuwait, the latter responded that the section of his
newspaper that analyzes Islamic currents thought the letter
might represent a kind of "code," in which the son,
announcing his agreement to marry, was communicating to his
family his intention to seek martyrdom or continuing his
Jihadist "path of thorns," and receiving the desired
benediction from his father. The contact said that the
families of two Kuwaiti jihadis who died in Iraq were
informed of their deaths by a message from extremists
informing them of the "good news" that their sons had just
gotten married. Post also notes that the father's use of
the phrase "we are in a deep slumber" has been used several
times by Osama bin Laden and other extremists in their calls
to Muslims to take up Jihad.
3. While we have no idea if this poorly written
correspondence suggests ongoing extremist intent on the part
of Abdarrahman Badali or simply reflects a family's effort
at mutual reassurance, there is certainly no indication of
regret on the part of the son or his father for the
presumably extremist activities that landed him in Abu
4. Post translation follows: 09/08/04 "Al Watan" Arabic
daily, page 4:
"A detainee proposed that I marry his sister"
In a letter from Abu Ghraib to his father Albidali says:
"The path I have chosen is not easy.prison has taught me a
Albidali's father: I am proud of you.and you are in a place
to be envied.
"Family News Only"
"God's peace be upon you, father how are you. I hope you're
fine, thanks be to Allah.
"I bring you the good news that I'm awaiting reward from
almighty Allah for this plight that has befallen me as a
result of sins, disobedience, scarce reading of the Koran,
excessive chatting and laughter. O father, I have learned a
lot in prison praise be to Allah. Please know father that
this is all thanks to Allah and you. My reward goes to you
my father. My father I love you in Allah. Please take care
of my folks, my mother and sisters. Most importantly take
care of the girls. Father, don't think I am young. They
have arranged a marriage for me but right now it's an
The newspaper article:
"Citizen Abdarrahmane Badali who has been detained in
AbuGhraib for months sent a letter to his family reassuring
them "I bring you the good news that I'm counting only on
Almighty Allah for my reward for this plight that has
befallen me as a result of sins, disobedience, scarce
reading of the Koran. I have learned a lot in prison praise
be to Allah. Father, don't think I am too young. One of
the Arab detainees proposed to me marriage to his sister. I
have changed, my father, and I need your prayers and don't
worry about the path I have chosen. It is not easy. Be
patient father as 'verily, with every difficulty there is
relief'. Praise to Allah, I am with my Arab brothers who all
send their greetings. Be reassured that I am well and don't
forget me in your prayers.
"In the end of his letter, Abderrahman sends greetings to
his mother telling her "I love you in God", followed by
greetings to his sisters.
"Abderrahman's father replied saying: Don't worry O
Abderrahman. This is a path filled with difficulties and
thorns. Be one of those who take opportunities. Seize this
opportunity and memorize the Koran and consult it in your
temporal world. This is an opportunity that does not repeat
itself. Don't pay attention to those outside for we are in
a deep slumber. I declare that I am proud of you in this
life and if God wills it in the after life.
"You must be patient Abderrahman. I am your witness in
front of Allah. Don't omit me from your prayers as you are
in a place for which you are envied. Spare no effort praying
for me, yourself and your brothers. God willing we will
meet one of these days and be one of those who consider
difficulties and afflictions as blessings from God in order
for you to get closer to God.
"Albidali senior concluded the letter saying "your mother,
grandmother, brothers, uncles and their children are all
sending their greetings and waiting for your return. Don't
forget us in your prayers. Please do individual prayers
(translator note: perhaps for each family member.) Do not
forget to memorize the Koran. Persevere in reciting it. We
shall meet in spite of all the oppressors and enemies God
willing. I will not forget you no matter how long it will
"On the other hand, "Al Watan" contacted one of the UN Red
Cross officers in Kuwait Mark Lening who said that Abderhman
Albidali who is detained in Abu Ghraib is well and that the
Red Cross workers in Iraq visit the detainees almost
everyday to check on them.
"He added that he does not know whether Albidali will be
released sooner or later as only authorities can decide
that. He also affirmed that he has brought the matter to
the authorities in Kuwait adding that the committee is not
concerned with the release of Kuwaiti detainees or others.
Authorities in both countries have that prerogative. He
declared that a class of detainees will be released without
trials, while others will go to court. He denied any
knowledge about the status of Kuwaiti citizen Albadali
reaffirming that the committee is neutral and is not
entitled to interfere in such matters. "We only implement
what the two parties in both countries agree on as far as
transporting and delivering the released prisoners".
5. Baghdad minimize considered.