IT became clear last week that the case against Capt. James J. Yee fell far short of what several senior defense officials had originally suggested: a major espionage plot at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility in Cuba.

Instead, the military announced that it was releasing Captain Yee, the former Muslim chaplain at Guantanamo, after confining him for nearly three months on suspicion of espionage activities. And the military suddenly found itself vulnerable to the allegation that it had fecklessly taken aim at him because of his Muslim faith.

Captain Yee was one of three Muslims, all American, at Guantanamo who were arrested on suspicion of espionage. The other two were translators, who also had contact with the prisoners. They remain locked up.

Unnamed officials were quoted in news articles suggesting an extraordinary scenario: Wily enemies were using Muslims as a fifth column at Guantanamo. And Captain Yee had an extraordinary history; he was a Chinese-American graduate of West Point who had converted to Islam and returned to the Army as a chaplain”¦


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