I’m delighted to report that, in recognition of my work on Guantánamo and the “war on terror” over the last seven years (including being the lead writer on the sections of a report on secret detention for the United Nations in 2010 dealing with US secret detention since 9/11, and being a media partner of WikiLeaks for the release of classified military files from Guantánamo in 2011), I’ve been short-listed for the prestigious Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism, dedicated to the memory of Martha Gellhorn (1908-1998), one of the great war correspondents of the 20th century.
The prize was established in 1999, and previous winners include Nick Davies, Robert Fisk, Patrick Cockburn, Ghaith Abdul-Ahad, Dahr Jamail, Mohammed Omer, Ian Cobain, Julian Assange and Gareth Porter.
As noted by the Committee (James Fox, Jeremy Harding, Cynthia Kee, Alexander Matthews, Shirlee Matthews and John Pilger), the prize is “awarded to a journalist whose work has penetrated the established version of events and told an unpalatable truth, validated by powerful facts, that exposes establishment propaganda, or ‘official drivel’ as Martha Gellhorn called it.”
As Martha Gellhorn also noted, highlighting an essential truth about how people allow themselves to be manipulated — something that is, sadly, abundantly clear from the “war on terror” declared by the Bush administration after the 9/11 attacks, and the lies told about the prisoners in — “Gradually I came to realize that people will more readily swallow lies than truth, as if the taste of lies was homey, appetizing: a habit.”
The winner will be announced on June 19, and, to reiterate, I’m deeply honored to have been short-listed.
Below, to provide some context for the prize, is a video from 1983 of Martha Gellhorn interviewed by John Pilger:
Andy Worthington is a freelance investigative journalist, activist, author, photographer and film-maker. He is the co-founder of the “Close Guantánamo” campaign, and 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. He is also the co-director (with Polly Nash) of the documentary film, “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” (available on DVD here – or here for the US).
To receive new articles in your inbox, please subscribe to Andy’s RSS feed — and he can also be found on Facebook (and here), Twitter, Flickr and YouTube. Also see the four-part definitive Guantánamo prisoner list, “The Complete Guantánamo Files,” an ongoing, 70-part, million-word series drawing on files released by WikiLeaks in April 2011. Also see the definitive Guantánamo habeas list and the chronological list of all Andy’s articles.
On Facebook, Ruth Gilburt wrote:
Yay! Really excited on your behalf…and very well deserved, Andy x
Cee Aitch wrote:
Be very proud. Congratulations.
Tangerine Bolen wrote:
So well deserved Andy. Truly.
Toia Tutta Jung wrote:
Margaret Rooney wrote:
Umm Ghazi wrote:
Amy Phillips wrote:
this is great news!!!
Thanks, Ruth, Cee, Tangerine, Toia, Margaret, Umm Ghazi and Amy, for your lovely comments!
Waris Ali wrote:
Congratulations Andy, more than well deserved!!
Sarah Gillespie wrote:
Fantastic!! Well deserved X
Laurette LaLiberte wrote:
Congratulations, you deserve it !!
Alex Grace wrote:
Well done Andy – keep up the good work xxx
Holly Berry wrote:
Laurette LaLiberte wrote:
Though the best reward will come when they finally shut it down !!
Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich wrote:
Erika Freiheit wrote:
Great news & best of luck
Shamsa Mughal wrote:
Well done !
Alice Clucas-Depret wrote:
Carol Brown wrote:
Brilliant news! Well done.
Aaron Ben Acer Quinn wrote:
well deserved Andy, when I think of Gitmo, the journalist that automatically springs to mind is you…. best of luck bro
Jeanne Herrick-Stare wrote:
This is wonderful recognition! Huzzah!
Dejanka Bryant wrote:
Excellent news! Well deserved, Andy.
Daniel Millito Figueroa Moreira wrote:
Pauline Kiernan wrote:
Fantastic news Andy. I am thrilled. And definitely SHARING! Px
Deb Equality Della Piana wrote:
George Kenneth Berger wrote:
Good news, Andy. I’ll share this.
Sarah Hashim brilliant!!! congrats Andy you absolutely deserve it!!
And thanks also, Laurette, Waris, Sarah, Alex, Holly, Soraya, Erika, Shamsa, Alice, Carol, Aaron, Jeanne, Dejanka, Daniel, Pauline, Deb, George and Sarah. Wow! What a wonderful response! And Laurette, you’re correct, of course – the best reward will come when they finally shut it down !!
Rita Pal wrote:
That is fantastic. Hope you get it. Well done and congratulations. You must be so pleased.
Thanks, Rita. Yes, very pleased. It’s very reassuring to have one’s work recognized!
Mathew Rogue Element Sandoval wrote:
well-deserved, dear friend. While anyone following Guantanamo knows that your work has been invaluable, it’s fantastic to see you receive wider recognition. Congrats.
Marjorie Cohn wrote:
That’s wonderful, Andy! Well-deserved.
Rupert Williams wrote:
congrats Andy you deserve it
Thanks, Mathew, Marjorie and Rupert. Much appreciated.
When Giacomella Jackie Milesi Ferretti shared my link, and I thanked her, she wrote:
no need to thank me Andy… it is my pleasure to share your great work!!
I can’t do as much as you do, yet I share at least what I consider important at a geopolitical level with many persons that are engaged in trying to make this world more HUMAN…
Very well put, Giacomella.
Lilian Norman wrote:
Great news hope you get it no one deserves it more
Thank you. Lilian. That’s very kind.
Kathleen Kelly wrote:
Jackie Sherman wrote:
well done.. and so well deserved!!
Guy Smallman wrote:
About time too!
Lindis Percy wrote:
WELL DONE Andy – richly deserved. We SO look forward to you coming to speak at the annual Independence FROM America demonstration on 4 July – please let us know about accommodation etc etc I sent an email to you recently about this. WE ARE SO FORTUNATE THAT YOU ARE COMING…AREN’T WE FRIENDS! Come and hear him!
James Yee wrote:
Andy, you fight from the trenches with a level of energy that I hope will never run out.
Thanks, Kathleen, Jackie, Guy, Lindis and James. Your supportive words are most welcome!
Rosie Much wrote:
well deserved andy
Neil Goodwin wrote:
Well done Andy! Holding thumbs – as they say in SA xx
MadLion Muir wrote:
Thank you for your tireless and courageous work. Win or not.
Leticia Werner wrote:
Wow, fantastic Andy! All the best to you for putting your whole heart into this matter! Lots of love!
Mui JS wrote:
You deserve it, Andy. You’ve certainly educated some of us, in a painstaking fashion too.
Pete Johnson wrote:
Well deserved. You have done so much for those people, and so much to point out the shame and revulsion that we all should feel.
Richard Osbourne wrote:
Congratulations Andy. You deserve all the accolades coming to you.
Ridwan Sheikh wrote:
Thats great. Congrats! Fully deserved for all the effort and dedication you have put in. It shows, that if you work diligently, people will see that, and your stock rises without you saying anything. Its always those people who blow their own trumpet that people have a problem with. Enjoy your moment!
Winston Weeks wrote:
Absolutely, what an honor and well deserved Andy.
Thanks, Rosie, Neil, MadLion, Leticia, Mui, Pete, Richard, Ridwan and Winston, for the support and the lovely comments.
Val Stevenson wrote:
My dear friend Andy greatly deserves the prize. He became fascinated and appalled by Guantanamo when I sent him a book about Afghanistan to review for nthposition. I never got the review, but he became a one-man wikipedia on the whole sorry affair, which is much more useful.
What a lovely comment, Val. Unfortunately, I don’t recall that book about Afghanistan. I know you played a part in getting me interested in the Bush administration’s crimes by sending me “Torture and Truth” by Mark Danner and “Dick: The Man Who Is President” by John Nichols, both of which I reviewed, but I can’t think what the book about Afghanistan was. Can you recall?
This is my review of “Dick: The Man Who Is President” by John Nichols, from 2005: http://nthposition.com/dickthemanwhois.php
Andy, let me add my hearty congratulations for the well deserved recognition of this nomination!
I am looking forward to sending you a second hearty congratulations when you win this award.
That would be nice, wouldn’t it? Thanks for all your steadfast support over the years, arcticredriver.
Congratulations! I am so happy to see that your tireless work and commitment has been recognised in this way – so thoroughly deserved!
Thanks, Diana, for the kind and supportive words.
Hanann Baghdadi wrote:
It’s a great day when people with conscience, who are least concerned with the prize, are rewarded for their hard work, the world out there is still a good place! Congratulations!
Aleksey Penskiy wrote:
Congratulations, you deserve it!!!
Shaker Elsayed wrote:
Best wishes. U deserve it & more.
Rosie Much wrote:
you’re such a light andy. good to see some being shone on you.
Thank you, Hanann, Aleksey, Shaker and Rosie. Great to hear from you all!
Redjade Magyarországon wrote:
big time congrats!!
Mohammed Zakaria wrote:
Congratulations Andy, you deserve to win.
Thanks, Redjade and Mohammed, for the supportive words!
Willy Bach wrote:
If anyone deserves this award it must be Andy Worthington. He has done terrific work. Without Andy’s research we might not have been where we are today, challenging US Commander-in-Chief to close the gulag at Guantanamo. No, I could not control my anger for long enough to be polite.
Thanks, Willy, for the supportive words, and for being one of the many people following this terrible story for so many years, and refusing to allow it to be forgotten.
Neil Mckenna wrote:
Gloria Torres wrote:
Hilary Homes wrote:
Well deserved Andy! Good luck
Louise Gordon wrote:
Mazel tov, Andy!
Anna Giddings wrote:
Great news. You deserve it
Beverly Hendricks wrote:
Deserved. Thanks, so much, for your work, Andy.
Beth Bailey-Kingdon wrote:
You SO deserve this, Andy. Thanks for all the hard work and inspiration.
Tausif Khan wrote:
Congrats this sounds like a great honor. Good luck to you.
Nan Douglas wrote:
Congratulations, Andy. You deserve this and more. Thank you so much for all your coverage.
John Sage wrote:
David Harrold wrote:
Very well deserved.
Patrick O’Brien wrote:
… congratulations, well deserved — and thank you for your work.
Thank you, Gloria, Hilary, Louise, Anna, Beverly, Beth, Tausif, Nan, John, David and Patrick for the kind words. It is very much appreciated. Working on Guantanamo for seven years as an independent researcher and writer has often been a lonely road, and your support has been essential.
Louise Taverner wrote:
Many congratulations & much deserved.
Gearoidin NiGriain wrote:
Congratulations are definitely in order here!! Well done!!
Omar Deghayes wrote:
Good news Andy ..well deserved
Thanks, Louise, Gearoidin and Omar. Your support is very much appreciated.
I am so pleased for you Andy! The recognition is very much deserved.
Thanks, harpie. Great to hear from you.
Nice job. Perseverance does pay off.
Thanks, Tom. Yes, I was pleased to note that, after seven years at the coalface!
When is the winner announced?
At the dinner to which those on the short-list are invited, in London on June 19, Tom. Three weeks to go!
Judy Ajifu wrote:
Very well deserved, Andy! I am not surprised. Best of luck to you!
Thanks, Judy. Good to hear from you.
Julia Igaz wrote:
Sincerely thank you for all the great dedicated work your continuing to do. I found your site so inspiring, one article+ petition I was so inspired I actually managed to write to just over seventy of the detainees. Thank you once again, wishing you all the very best
Thanks, Julia. That’s wonderful to hear!
Peggy O’Neil Manfredi wrote:
Great “company” you may be joining if you win. Good Luck!
Thanks, Peggy. Yes, a wonderful roll-call of excellent investigative journalists. I feel I’m in great company just having been nominated, to be honest.
D J Sanchez In-Montebello wrote:
Congratulations to you, Andy.
YOU DESERVE THE HONOR for all your tireless work.
Respect to you… “S A N C H E Z”.
Nicola Mattiagne wrote:
We’re very honoured to know you Andy, and the enthusiasm you share in life. You deserve to be recognised for your hard work.
Serra Basarir wrote:
It seems that there are positive developments which herald the closure of Guantanamo Bay. I believe you have been very effective on this from the beginning. Congratulations!
Andy Hemingway wrote:
That’s great news Andy. Really hope that you win it. Your work deserves recognition.
Thanks, D J Sanchez, Nicola, Serra and Andy. Great to hear from you all, and thanks for the kind words and support.
Anna Elliott wrote:
So well deserved.
Thank you, Anna. Lovely to hear from you.
Asif Rana wrote:
Nice one Andy.
Ryan Hunt wrote:
Congratulations, Andy, and well deserved to say the least! Most likely, many more such awards will follow!
Thanks, Asif and Ryan. I like your vision of an award-strewn future, Ryan, but this nomination is really gratifying. I’m particularly pleased that it is “awarded to a journalist whose work has penetrated the established version of events and told an unpalatable truth, validated by powerful facts, that exposes establishment propaganda, or ‘official drivel’ as Martha Gellhorn called it.” I do feel that’s what I’ve been doing for the last seven years.
Ryan Hunt wrote:
Sounds about right to me!
Kirsten Holst Kjaer wrote:
You are great !
Jez Cuthbert wrote:
Thanks again, Ryan, and thanks, Kirsten and Jez. Good to hear from you!
Rachels Page wrote:
Colin Brace wrote:
Most deserved this recognition!
Malcolm Bush wrote:
I think you really deserve some official recognition for all your work. Your work is important and very useful to a wide range of: human rights campaigners, academics, journalists, historians all those among the general public who wish to gain specialized or generic knowledge from your work.
Kristin Higgins wrote:
great stuff Andy couldn’t go to a more deserving person
David Knopfler wrote:
More than deserved!
Thanks, Colin, Malcolm, Kristin and David. Lovely to hear from you all.
Investigative journalist, author, filmmaker, photographer and Guantanamo expert
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