1. systemic shortage of arab translators in the US intelligence agencies.
2. more than 500 mostly arab-speaking detainees in guantanamo and secret US prisons elsewhere in the world.
3. potentially millions of conversations (something on the order of 500 simultaneously) subject to illegal warantless wiretaps of US citizens’ overseas phone calls by the NSA, many of those in arabic.
4. “we do not torture.”
so, what are we to do with all those arab prisoners sitting around (in black hoods and ball gags) not getting tortured, with nothing better to do than read the Koran they fished out of the toilet (again!)?
it’s pretty clear to me now: all those “ghost detainees” are being put to work translating the backlog of NSA wiretap fodder. it’s like a sweatshop, only instead of getting paid four cents an hour to make Nikes, they have to patiently explain the difference between the pronunciation of “milk” and “yogurt” (again!) while a technician wires up the electrodes to the nipple clamps.