Quarterly Fundraiser: Help Me Raise $2500 for My Work on Guantánamo and Torture

5.9.11

Please support my work!

On the eve of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 that precipitated the “War on Terror” that has consumed my life for the last five and a half years, through my work chronicling the illegality and the human cost of the Bush administration’s cruel and misguided response to those attacks, it is, I’m rather astonished to note, three months since I last reached out to you, my readers and my supporters, to ask you to provide some financial support to help me to continue my work.

Every three months I ask for donations to help me maintain my existence as a journalist working mainly in the new media, combining traditional journalism (paid for by those who publish it) and reader-funded journalism (supported directly by my readers) as a viable model for a writer in 2011. My last appeal in June — for $2,000 — was thoroughly successful, and with the help of 36 wonderful friends, readers and supporters (and my apologies if I didn’t manage to thank you all personally!), I succeeded in raising that amount, and, with donations received over the summer, exceeding my expectations.

As a result, I’m putting out an appeal for $2,500 this quarter. This is not a vast amount of money, and nor is it enough to live on, but if those who enjoy my work provide me with $10,000 a year then I am less reliant on the vagaries of the freelance world, and can pursue the kind of research and analysis that I have been undertaking since May, when, after liaising with WikILeaks on the release of previously classified military files from Guantánamo, I began a colossal project chronicling all the prisoners in Guantánamo, adding information from these files to what was already known, to create “The Complete Guantánamo Files,” a 70-part series of articles, totalling at least 700,000 words, for which I have currently completed the first 17 parts.

This project, which is taking up most of my time from now until the end of the year, is partly funded by one of the organizations that supports my work, but not to the extent necessary to make it viable and self-supporting financially, and so, if you can help out at all, please click on the “Donate” button above to make a payment via PayPal.

All contributions are welcome, whether it’s $25, $100 or $500. Readers can pay via PayPal from anywhere in the world, but if you’re in the UK and want to help without using PayPal, you can send me a cheque (address here — scroll down to the bottom of the page), and if you’re not a PayPal user and want to send a check from the US (or from anywhere else in the world, for that matter), please feel free to do so, but bear in mind that I have to pay a $10/£6.50 processing fee on every transaction. Securely packaged cash is also an option!

In return, I promise to continue shining a light on the dark corners of the United States’ activities since 9/11, and also, when possible, to comment on other stories that have proven of interest to my readers — primarily, the revolutionary movements in the Middle East, the ongoing global financial crisis, and the appalling political state of the UK under a Tory-led coalition.

Over the next three months I will also be working with a number of organizations and concerned individuals on plans to raise the profile of Guantánamo, and the 171 prisoners still held, for the 10th anniversary of the prison’s opening, on January 11, 2012.

This is a terrible anniversary that, when President Bush left office and Barack Obama took over, seemed to be one that would be marked by the closure of Guantánamo and the restoration of America as a nation ruled by law, in which the arbitrary detention of foreigners in an offshore prison would no longer be tolerated, and those who were responsible for creating Guantánamo and redefining and authorizing torture would be held accountable for their actions.

That did not happen, of course, and so the long road to justice and accountability has grown longer still, but with your help I will continue to call for accountability and a return to the rule of law, and to demonstrate why both remain necessary.

As always, it is good to have you with me, and without your support, of course, my work means nothing.

Andy Worthington
London
September 5, 2011

P.S. On a more prosaic note, I also need donations to secure some technical support for my site, as my security was recently compromised. This is a less glamorous side of the expense of running a website and working in the new media, but it is, of course, of vital importance, as cyberthreats continue to proliferate.

Andy Worthington 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) and of two other books: Stonehenge: Celebration and Subversion and The Battle of the Beanfield. To receive new articles in your inbox, please subscribe to my RSS feed (and I can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, Digg and YouTube). Also see my definitive Guantánamo prisoner list, updated in June 2011, details about the new documentary film, “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” (co-directed by Polly Nash and Andy Worthington, on tour in the UK throughout 2011, and available on DVD here — or here for the US), my definitive Guantánamo habeas list and the chronological list of all my articles.

33 Responses

  1. Andy Worthington says...

    On Facebook, George Kenneth Berger wrote:

    I’ll contribute soon, Andy.

  2. Andy Worthington says...

    Thank you, George, and thanks also to the first friend who has made a contribution. It’s very much appreciated.

  3. Andy Worthington says...

    George Kenneth Berger wrote:

    I wasn’t able to pay with paypal, I think because it does not recognise my email address. My Gmail is routed through the Netherlands, where many government and other certificates were falsified electronically about two days ago. Gmail was one victim, and I cannot connect with various sites. All sorts of rumours are flying about, mainly, “Iran did it,” without a shread of public proof, just accusations. Very weird cyberattack.

  4. Andy Worthington says...

    Hi George, that’s funny, because I’ve just received a donation from you via PayPal! Thanks very much, and thanks also to the other friend who, in the last few hours, has also made a donation to keep me hard at work.

  5. Andy Worthington says...

    Having said that, George, I’m sorry to hear about the cyberattack. That sounds troubling. I wouldn’t have known about it had you not mentioned it:
    http://security.cbronline.com/news/dutch-probes-iran-role-in-recent-hacking-of-government-websites-050911

  6. Andy Worthington says...

    George Kenneth Berger wrote:

    That’s it. The public isn’t being told a thing, yet Iran gets suddenly blamed. Well, I got 1. a certification that I donated to you (25 USD) and 2. A message from Pay Pal saying that the contact could not be made. I used Gmail. So, to play safe I turned off the function that lets money be taken out in another country. No problem, I’ll figure something out. ALL accounts, gmail, yahoo, atc are in trouble. My problem started two nights ago, when I tried to use CHROME to reach a UK site. Same result.

  7. Andy Worthington says...

    Well I’m very grateful for all the effort you went to to make a donation to me, George. Thanks again. It really is troubling, though, if there’s a major problem with so many accounts, as you’re saying, and on a national or trans-national level.

  8. Andy Worthington says...

    George Kenneth Berger wrote:

    Andy, I don’t even know if all accounts are in trouble. Gmail definitely is. I read about yahoo and others in some Dutch paper this morning. The problem concerns “certificates.” These are programs at the receiving end that recognise (or don’t) that I am a legit user of that end’s server. *These* were falsified en masse. This means that a fake certificate recognises me, but leads me to a phony site that looks just like the original. Then I send *them* cash, thinking I sent it to you. So, I either lost 25 USD, or you got it, or I closed my system before some crook got my money. This is *trivial.* Major problems are for government services, such as the tax people. Then people lose a lot. The government posts warnings, but says nothing.

  9. Andy Worthington says...

    I got it, George. I checked with PayPal, but this is a huge and important story, isn’t it? Certificates falsified en masse at government level, leading consumers to scamming websites disguised to look like they’re real?!?

  10. Andy Worthington says...

    George Kenneth Berger wrote:

    It might be. I just warned a FB friend in Amsterdam. She could not reach the Chamber of Commerce and was wondering what was going on. So some sites have been closed off temporarily. I knew that this morning.

    Here’s an English article: http://www.dutchnews.nl/news/archives/2011/09/government_investigates_intern.php

  11. Andy Worthington says...

    George Kenneth Berger wrote:

    I just looked at the English article you posted. I don’t like the purely circumstantial yet suggestive evidence it presents. All other texts I’ve seen are similar, yet yours mentions the self-immolation affair and diplomatic difficulties. That is not evidence, just suggestion.

  12. Andy Worthington says...

    Yes, I agree, George. Thanks again.

  13. Andy Worthington says...

    AniTa Hdz wrote:

    Andy i sent a small donation….no problem thru paypal. Best of luck in raising all you need :)

  14. Andy Worthington says...

    Thank you, AniTa. That’s very kind of you. Please note that this appeal is ongoing, and I’ll be posting another fundraising request later today.

  15. Andy Worthington says...

    Dejanka Bryant wrote:

    Andy, I’ve just sent my donation.

  16. Andy Worthington says...

    Thank you, Dejanka. That’s very kind.

  17. Andy Worthington says...

    George Kenneth Berger wrote:

    Andy, it turns out that my failure to connect with a server in the UK was due to some problem with that server, not with the Dutch issue. I don’t know what caused the difficulty with Pay Pal, but since you got my contribution it was probably just a glitch at Pay Pal, unrelated to the Dutch hack. I was concerned, since I sent the money while news of the certificate falsifications was prominent.

  18. Andy Worthington says...

    Well, that’s good to know, George, although it’s still alarming to hear about hacking at a government level that is not then adequately reported.

  19. Andy Worthington says...

    George Kenneth Berger wrote:

    Well, as I understand it, the attack was on the computer of a private firm that the government used. That’s bad enough in my book, since the firm might have had shabby and/or cheap security. I haven’t looked at the news in Dutch for several days, but I will do my best to check.

  20. Andy Worthington says...

    Exactly, George. Governments really do need to be aware of the threat on an everyday level – and that involves choosing who to work with. Perhaps we’ll discover that it was a bunch of charlatans who put in a cheap bid!

  21. Andy Worthington says...

    George Kenneth Berger wrote:

    That’s what I thought but didn’t want to say out loud. Perhaps not charlatans, but a firm working on the cheap, headed by people who know little about information technology and security, and staffed by indifferent, poorly paid and perhaps poorly educated technicians. Then there’s the additional strong possibility that the bosses did not wish to spend much money on necessary, periodic, checks and updates. It’s typical of what one gets when taxes are lowered, a service is outsourced, and the job is out of sight of the departments which, I hope, employ a few better technicians.

    Or better yet, “outsourced” within the country, and the rules relaxed by deregulation and privatisation of the service. With the possible exception of privatisation, that is what happened to me, thanks to KPMG, which took over a government function that stood in the way of the privatisation of Dutch insurance.

  22. Andy Worthington says...

    Let me know if you find out more, George!

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Andy Worthington

Investigative journalist, author, filmmaker, photographer and Guantanamo expert
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The Battle of the Beanfield

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Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo

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