Bush’s bitter legacy (on the seventh anniversary of 9/11)

11.9.08

President Goerge W. Bush“Bush’s Bitter Legacy” is the title of an article I wrote for the Guardian’s “Comment is free” section today, in which I briefly ran through the legal and moral desolation of the Bush administration’s “War on Terror,” and pointed out that, although both Barack Obama and John McCain have pledged to close Guantánamo (the most visible icon of the post-9/11 flight from the law), and Obama has also talked of a timetable for withdrawing US forces from Iraq, neither man has yet dealt with the unaccountable prison system that lies behind Guantánamo, or with the thorny details of how to actually close the prison.

With reference to the work of Reprieve, the legal action charity whose lawyers represent 31 prisoners in Guantánamo, I discussed the particular difficulties faced by a number of these men, who have been cleared for release, but who cannot be freed because of treaties preventing the repatriation of foreign nationals if they face the risk of torture, and other obstacles preventing the closure of the prison — not least the Military Commissions, the disgraceful trial system for terror suspects that was conceived by Vice President Dick Cheney and his close advisers just two months after the 9/11 attacks.

Andy Worthington was the Communications Manager for Reprieve in 2008 and is the author of The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison (published by Pluto Press, distributed by Macmillan in the US, and available from Amazon — click on the following for the US and the UK). To receive new articles in your inbox, please subscribe to my RSS feed, and see here for my definitive Guantánamo prisoner list, published in March 2009.

One Response

  1. Andreas Kabbadias says...

    ALL OF THE DO-GOODERS SHOULD ASK THE QUESTION = WHAT IS AN ETHIOPEAN LIVING IN ENGLAND BY THE GRACE OF MAINLY LAW-ABIDING PEOPLE, DOING IN PAKISTAN? PAKISTAN IS NOT HIS COUNTRY, NOBODY GOES TO PAKISTAN BECAUSE OF IT’S SUNNY BEACHES AND NIGHT LIFE.

    AND WHY SO MUCH TIME AND MONEY ARE SPENT ON TRYING TO FREE PEOPLE IN OTHER PARTS OF THE PLANET WHEN HERE IN ENGLAND PEOPLE ARE KICKED OUT OF WORK, AND PEOPLE WHO HAVE WORKED ALL THEIR LIVES IN BUILDING UP THIS COUNTRY, ARE NOW BEING KICKED OUT OF THEIR OWN HOMES WITH NOWHWERE TO GO, ALL BECAUSE THIS GOVERNMENT HAS SCREWED-UP THIS COUNTRY. CHARITY STARTS AT HOME, LOOK AFTER THE LAW ABIDING CITIZENS FIRST AND FORGET ABOUT TRYING TO PUT THE WORLD TO RIGHT.

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Andy Worthington

Investigative journalist, author, campaigner, commentator and public speaker. Recognized as an authority on Guantánamo and the “war on terror.” Co-founder, Close Guantánamo and We Stand With Shaker. Also, photo-journalist (The State of London), and singer and songwriter (The Four Fathers).
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