For years, Navy medical staff boasted to visiting reporters that the relationship was so cordial with hunger-strikers that they let the prisoners pick their flavor of nutritional supplement. Butter pecan and strawberry were alternately identified as forced-feeding favorites.

Flavor makes a difference, according to the Navy medical staff, if a detainee burps and gets a taste of the backwash.

But it's five months into the hunger strike by the prison's count, (six according to the detainees' lawyers) and medical staff are no longer so good-humored. All nutritional supplement supplies are just one flavor — vanilla.

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