Andy Worthington & Stephanie Tang (Debra Sweet, previously scheduled, is unable to come) Address How & Why the U.S. has Kept this Illegal Prison Open for 12 years, and Our Responsibility to Close It.
& special screening of the film Doctors of the Dark Side
Film at 7:00 pm (at Revolution Books 2425 Channing Way, followed by speakers Debra Sweet and Andy Worthington in conversation
The Bush regime filled the off-shore prison at Guantanamo Bay by rendering men seized from around the globe into indefinite captivity, employing and legally justifying a program of torture they called "enhanced interrogation." Even Bush's team slowly began to release hundreds of prisoners for whom no case could be fabricated to justify prison. When Barack Obama was elected, he quickly promised to close it within a year...five years ago.
It's still open, with new infrastructure added, and more personnel than ever. Most people in the U.S. have no idea there are still 82 prisoners there who were cleared for release years ago; 45 who the President says will never be charged or released; and "military commissions" trials are designed to cover the torture inflicted on the prisoners, depriving of them rights the U.S. has claimed to cherish.
Why, as the "war on terror" is said to be winding down, will this country not close Guantanamo? And what is our responsibility to see that it does?
Andy Worthington, a journalist based in the U.K., has covered the prison intensely since 2006. In hundreds of articles, beginning when very little was known about the prisoners, he's uncovered the lives of the men held without charge, and the stories the U.S. created about them. Author of The Guantanamo Files: Stories of the 774 Men Held in Guantanamo, and in his 2009 film Outside the Law, Andy further developed the picture by sifting through the Guantanamo Detainee Briefs released via Wikileaks by Private Manning in 2011.
Debra Sweet is the Director of The World Can't Wait, organizer of years of programs & protests of indefinite detention and torture by the United States, including a full page ad in The New York Times in May 2013 picturing Guantanamo prisoners for the first time in those pages, and bringing together prisoners' attorneys, academics, artists, and voices of conscience to declare “Close Guantanamo NOW.”