by David Phinney
Friday July 12th 2024



Spooky Business in a Strange World

by David Phinney

April 25, 2007 — The flood of emails continues pouring in about the short news story retelling Donald Vance’s three-month imprisonment at Camp Cropper in Iraq.

Vance says he was acting as an FBI informant while working for an Iraqi-owned private security company. He claims he was witnessing the possible illegal sales of arms to insurgents and other nefarious doings and wanted to do something about it. Yet, the US military imprisoned him for some three months — without charge or explanation.

Answers as to why Vance was held will hopefully come out in a lawsuit Vance is waging against former US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. They may not be very flattering to the U.S. government.

MEANWHILE: I don’t know who this new guy is that sent me the email below, but he seems to represent himself as the “third detainee,” Joe Trimpert. Then again, the sender may be an imposter. But it is known that Trimpert was a “Third Detainee” arrested at the same time as Vance. Vance accuses Trimpert of some pretty ugly business, including brutal acts against Iraqi civilians.

THE LINK: At is an intriguing curiosity. (As of 05/16/07, I noticed the contents had been removed, but I previously copied the files. Email me if you are interested). Sent to me by the “Third Detainee,” it portrays what appear to be release papers from Camp Cropper’s detention facility with these provisions:

— Disavow and renounce violence
— Disavow membership to Saddam Hussein’s Ba’ath party.
— Will not associate with anyone planning to harm Iraqi security forces

Vance says he never was compelled to sign conditions such as these.

Camp Cropper commander, Army Lt. Col. William H. Steele appears to have approved the release papers — the same Steele arrested several weeks ago by the US Army for allegedly, among, other things, aiding insurgents, misappropriating government funds, and having relationships with Iraqi women.

Vance is a little concerned about this following email from the mystery sender:

“Mr. Phinney
I’ve been following Vance’s story it’s interesting and if there is really a God when judgement day comes, he will definitely have to Explain himself with in regards what to what Really Happened that Day on April 15th, 2006.
And that is all i pretty much have to say about the events that took place on April 15 th-2006 to the Day i was Released August 10th, 2006… Camp Cropper
I’m not interested in an interview…”

Here’s some bio material from the cryptic link (complete with spelling errors, etc.): Just click below…..

-American Citizenship
-I was detained and Held at Camp Cropper from April 16th, 2006-August 10th, 2006
-Detainee Number given to Me: US200341DT
-Called a traitor, told I was going to be sent to Camp Delta/X-Ray in Guantanamo Bay Cuba.
-No access to a Lawyer, No phone Calls.
-Asked for a Copy of the Geneva Convention (Given to Me, but only in Arabic)
-Constatly loud music 24/7, U.S. Military/CiA,FBi/ questioning Me.. trying to get Me to say I was a member of “Al-Qaeda in Iraq”
-Living in a 12×12 Concrete Cell, with a Turkish Toilet aka a hole in the ground to take a crap in.
-Only allowed to go outside at Night for Recreation (I used to kill roaches) inside the play pen. Night Recreation because Americans aren’t suppose to be in Camp Cropper.
-4 Doors down from me was Chemical Ali
-Wrote 11 Red Cross Letter’s Home to America, Not a One of them Ever Reached the States.
-Constant sounds of the MP’s (Military Police) playing with their Taser’s all you would hear is this zap zap! noise.
-Requested Books to Read, issued em then taken away within minutes, also requested Soduku haha, PSP,Portable DVD player.
***My time in Camp Cropper Sucked more than Monica Lewensky !
Finally Released August 9th, 2006′ (The Military/CiA/FBi) said there wasn’t enough evidence regarding what really happened. I was given $20.00 bucks, had to pay for my own Ticket thou from Iraq to America. Not Even an apology for being held.
Only a letter of Release.
-Lesson’s Learned, Shit Happens when you least Expect it (“Murphy’s Law”)
-I suppose i could be still pining/dwelling over what happened, I’ve pretty much moved on since then. But what the heck is that going to accomplish dwelling on what happened. I know other Americans who are trying to win something, trust Me that incident will never leave the Soul, just gotta deal with it.
– I just feel sorry for my Iraqi counter-parts who might be innocent as well, just happened to be hanging out in a part of town at the wrong time.
-Once I received my so called Freedom from Camp Cropper I can just say it felt like that Movie The Shawshank Redemption times 50 over.
-It’s not easy living with what happened in Camp Cropper, and a lot of lies put down by other Detainees/former co-workers.. if the Military were to release files on what really happened on April 15th, 2006′ their could be a whole lot of embarrassment for all parties that endured a Vacation at Camp Cropper.
-But Oh Fracking Well, I emailed various news agencies in regards of being held, ect… but i made i clear I wasn’t looking for any publicity, still not looking for any stardom like other detainees.. Sure you Can Speak Out but what i’ve read so Far it has not done a thing except to get a lot of Americans pissed off/ and more mistrust from Our Gov’t.. rather you’re Gov’t.
-Why do i say you’re Gov’t i do share the same views as what has been written by other detainees regarding (torture or American’s), and for anyone who happens to be still in Camp Cropper regardless of their Nationality., so much for due process.
-I do think half the detainees are probably not guilty in Guantanamo Bay Cuba, i couldn’t imagine being locked up in GITMO for over a year i’d lose my mind.
-The one thing i missed while being held at Camp Cropper was Music, upon my release and back in America, i went out and bought a new ipod., since the Military/CiD/CIA/FBi confiscated my ipod, Macintosh G4, and bad ass Movietunes projector.
-Present Day, well just moving forward, what can you do? Live in the Past..? Not Me… I’ve seen some crazy things in my life Example From September 11th, 2001-October 3rd, 2001 I helped recovered Dead Americans from the Pentagon.. this can be verified. **There are still times i feel Dead/ and i’m pretty sure that perhaps other American detainees might feel this as well.
-What to do, that was Then….. This is Now…, i plan to save up as much $ then move outside of America probably to our neighbors in the South Mexico, i really have Desire to live in or work in America again., i spent sometime down in Mexico after returning from Iraq, did you know you can talk trash about the American Gov’t down there and not have to worry about being locked up…(i however did not par-take) in such activites but met a lot of American Expatriates living down there, who moved out of America because of politics. I will probably do the same in the near future.
And in closing, i decided to put this up.. to give some insight, if i want celebrity status some day i will post my whole name on Here & perhaps go on Oprah…haha, Thanks but No Thanks. All American Detainees who were with Me should be counting their lucky stars including Me… We could have Easily been in there for Life……, and inshallah the Detainee’s being currently held at Camp Cropper/Camp X-Ray/Abu Graib.. i hope they will win their Freedom …
Who I’d like to meet:
-Jack Idema (American Prisoner of War/Detainee) Afghanistan 2004′
To Read more About Jack Idema visit -Associated Press Photographer Bilal Hussein (Iraqi Detainee Camp Cropper April 12th,2006) I did see Bilal briefly in Cropper but didn’t talk to him. I have been in contact with people at the AP via email/phone.
To Read more About Bilal Hussein visit
**The Road To Guanatanmo** 1-10 Video Series
This is pretty damn Close what it feels like to be Detaineed by the American Gov’t and treated like an Insurgent even if you’re found Innocent in the End….


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