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The Washington Post is reporting:
The U.S. government said it accidentally turned over a classified document about how it determines who are the most dangerous detainees in Afghanistan to the American Civil Liberties Union, and wants a federal judge to order the group to return it and not release it to the public, according to court papers. The contested document is a form used by the military to record the findings and recommendations of Detainee Review Boards at its detention center near Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan. The review boards, composed of military officers, determine whether a detainee poses what the Pentagon calls an Enduring Security Threat, or EST, and the document contains the criteria for assessing detainees. A senior Pentagon official, in declaration to the court filed Wednesday in New York, said release of the document “could have significant deleterious repercussions with respect to our diplomatic relationships with Afghanistan and various other countries.” “EST criteria and determinations are not currently a topic in our sensitive bilateral discussions with other countries,” said the official, William K. Lietzau, who added that “revelation of EST criteria would likely complicate those discussions.” He provided no detail but said he could explain why in a private meeting with the judge, if requested.

Benjamin Wittes is editor in chief of Lawfare and a Senior Fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution. He is the author of several books.

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