"Vice President Dick Cheney's foreign policy advisers won an internal administration tussle over what to do with the men, U.S. officials confirmed on condition of anonymity. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had argued for a quicker release but was overruled, partly out of concern not to make the release appear part of a deal involving the British, the sources said."
In other news, I heard it was the State Dept. that sent Condi with the message to release them. It was Cheney who blocked her.