Andy Worthington: An Archive of Guantánamo Articles and Other Writing – Part 18, January to June 2015


Andy Worthington standing with the poster for the We Stand With Shaker campaign at the protest against Guantanamo outside the White House on January 11, 2015, the 13th anniversary of the opening of the prison (Photo: Medea Benjamin for Andy Worthington).Please support my work!

This article is the 18th in an ongoing series of articles listing all my work in chronological order. It’s a project I began in January 2010, when I put together the first chronological lists of all my articles, in the hope that doing so would make it as easy as possible for readers and researchers to navigate my work — the 2,584 articles I have published since I began publishing articles here in May 2007, which, otherwise, are not available in chronological order in any readily accessible form.

I first began researching the Bush administration’s “war on terror” prison at Guantánamo and the 779 men (and boys) held there over ten years ago, in the fall of 2005, and began researching and writing about it on a full-time basis exactly ten years ago in March 2006, when the Pentagon lost a FOIA lawsuit and was obliged to release 8,000 pages of documents relating to the prisoners. Initially, I spent 14 months researching and writing my book The Guantánamo Files, based on those documents, and, since May 2007, I have continued to write about the men held there, on an almost daily basis, as an independent investigative journalist — for two and a half years under President Bush, and, shockingly, for what is now over seven years under President Obama.

As I note every time I put together a chronological list of my articles, my mission, as it has been since my research first revealed the scale of the injustice at Guantánamo, continues to revolve around four main aims — to humanize the prisoners by telling their stories; to expose the many lies told about them to supposedly justify their detention; to push for the prison’s closure and the absolute repudiation of indefinite detention without charge or trial as US policy; and to call for those who initiated, implemented and supported indefinite detention and torture to be held accountable for their actions.

I am also about to embark on my first quarterly fundraising appeal of 2016, when I ask readers, if they can, to support my work, most of which is undertaken without any institutional support — or, to put it another way, to help to fund me as a reader-supported journalist and activist, reliant on your support. I’m trying to raise $3500 for the next three months, so if you can support my work — with a donation however large or small — then please click on the “Donate” button above to donate via PayPal.

The period covered by this 18th list, from January to June 2015, was not a good period for the release of prisoners, as just six men were freed — in June. However, I continued to work as tirelessly as possible to push for action from the US government. As with every year since 2011, I visited the US in January to call for the closure of the prison, including at the protest outside the White House on January 11, the anniversary of the opening of the prison in 2002, and throughout this period I also continued to work diligently on the We Stand With Shaker campaign that I launched in November 2014 with the activist Joanne MacInnes.

That campaign contributed to the release of Shaker on October 30, 2015 — a real triumph for campaigners around the world facing what appear to be insurmountable odds, but from January to June, as we came up with new campaigning ideas, like February’s “There is no love in Guantánamo” campaign, featuring Roger Waters, we had no idea if he would actually be freed. In March, the government backed a motion calling for his release, put forward by the Shaker Aamer Parliamentary Group, led by the MPs John McDonnell and David Davis, and in May Davis, with his colleague Andrew Mitchell, and with the Labour MPs Andy Slaughter and future party leader Jeremy Corbyn, visited the US to call for Shaker’s release, a visit that the US attorney Tom Wilner, my colleague in another campaign, the Close Guantánamo campaign, helped by arranging visits with a number of influential Senators.

Throughout this period, the latest review process at Guantánamo, the Periodic Review Boards, continued, and former child prisoner Omar Khadr was finally freed on bail in Canada, appearing in public for the first time and cutting through all the scaremongering hyperbole about him with his modesty and charm.

Throughout the period covered by this list, I also continued to write, when time allowed, about the disgraceful war being waged on public services by the Tory-led government here in the UK, and our sad General Election, when the Tories, with just 24.4% of the electorate on their side, nevertheless ended up with 51% of the seats. My band The Four Fathers‘ song “Tory Bullshit Blues” failed to dent their relative popularity, sadly, and in June I remembered how it was 30 years since an earlier Tory nightmare, Margaret Thatcher, had crushed dissent by travellers and festival-goers at the Battle of the Beanfield.

As I always explain when I publish these lists, I remain convinced, through detailed research, through comments from insiders with knowledge of Guantánamo, and through an analysis of classified military documents released by WikiLeaks, that between 95 and 97 percent of the 779 men and boys imprisoned in total were either completely innocent people, seized as a result of dubious intelligence or sold for bounty payments, or Taliban foot soldiers, recruited to fight an inter-Muslim civil war that began long before the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and that had nothing to do with al-Qaeda, Osama bin Laden or international terrorism.

The articles I wrote between January and June 2015 are listed below, separated into two categories: articles about Guantánamo, and articles about British politics. I hope you find the list useful, and will share it if you do.

An archive of Guantánamo articles: Part 18, January to June 2015

January 2015

Yemeni prisoner Fahd Ghazy, photographed before his capture and his rendition to Guantanamo.1. Yemenis in Guantánamo: As Three Yemenis Are Freed from Guantánamo, Video Highlights Plight of 52 Others, Long Cleared for Release
2. Guantánamo anniversary, US visit: Close Guantánamo: Andy Worthington’s US Tour Dates, January 8-15, 2015
3. Prisoners released from Guantánamo: Who Are the Five Guantánamo Prisoners Given New Homes in Kazakhstan?
4. Shaker Aamer: Shaker Aamer’s First Phone Call from Guantánamo to His Lawyers Since Publication of the Senate Torture Report
5. Guantánamo anniversary: As Guantánamo’s 14th Year of Operations Begins, This Must Be the Year It Closes
6. Guantánamo campaigns: Gitmo Clock Marks 600 Days Since President Obama’s Promise to Resume Releasing Prisoners from Guantánamo; 59 Cleared Prisoners Remain
7. Video, Guantánamo anniversary, US visit: Video: Andy Worthington Calls for the Closure of Guantánamo Outside the White House on January 11, 2015
8. Video, Guantánamo anniversary, US visit: Video: At New America, Andy Worthington, Tom Wilner and Col. Morris Davis Discuss the Closure of Guantánamo and the CIA Torture Report
9. Guantánamo anniversary, US visit, radio: Radio, TV and Live Events: Andy Worthington Discusses Guantánamo and the Need to Close the Prison During His US Tour
10. Prisoners released from Guantánamo: Who Are the Five Yemenis Released from Guantánamo and Given New Homes in Oman and Estonia?
11. Photos, Guantánamo anniversary, US visit, torture: Photos and Report: Occupying Dick Cheney’s House and Protesting About Guantánamo, Torture and Drones Outside CIA HQ
12. Guantánamo, Periodic Review Boards: Progress Towards Closing Guantánamo, As Periodic Review Boards Resume with the Case of a Seriously Ill Egyptian
13. Video, Guantánamo anniversary, US visit: Video: Andy Worthington Speaks About Guantánamo and We Stand With Shaker in New York, Plus Lawyers Ramzi Kassem and Omar Farah
14. Photos, Guantánamo anniversary, US visit: Photos: “Close Guantánamo” Protest Outside the White House on January 11, 2015, the 13th Anniversary of Prison’s Opening
15. Video, Guantánamo anniversary, US visit: Video: Andy Worthington Talks About Guantánamo and the Need to Close the Prison at Western New England School of Law
16. Guantánamo anniversary, US visit, radio: Radio: Two Recent Interviews with Andy Worthington About Guantánamo as the Prison Begins Its 14th Year of Operations

February 2015

17. Guantánamo campaigns: Please Write to the Prisoners in Guantánamo, Let Them Know They Have Not Been Forgotten
18. Video, Guantánamo anniversary, US visit: Video: Andy Worthington Speaks at “Guantánamo At 13: How Obama Can Close the Illegal Prison” in Northampton, Massachusetts
19. Guantánamo, torture: Andy Worthington Speaks at Two London Events on the CIA Torture Report and the Banned Books of Guantánamo, February 2015
20. Shaker Aamer, We Stand With Shaker: We Stand With Shaker: Send a Valentine’s Card for Shaker Aamer to the US Ambassador in London, to Ask for His Release from Guantánamo
21. Guantánamo anniversary, US visit, radio: Radio: Andy Worthington Discusses Guantánamo and We Stand With Shaker on KBOO FM in Portland and Radio Islam in Chicago
22. Shaker Aamer: On Eve of 13th Anniversary of Shaker Aamer’s Arrival at Guantánamo, Renewed Calls for Action from Barack Obama and David Cameron
23. Shaker Aamer, We Stand With Shaker: US Ambassador Snubs 60 Celebrities and MPs Calling for Release from Guantánamo of Shaker Aamer
24. Shaker Aamer: “There’s a Part of Our Heart That’s Missing”: Shaker Aamer’s Sons Speak to Sky News on 13th Anniversary of His Arrival at Guantánamo
25. Shaker Aamer, We Stand With Shaker: Photos: “There is No Love in Guantánamo” – We Stand With Shaker Protest at the US Embassy in London, February 13, 2015
26. Guantánamo, Mohamedou Ould Slahi: A Tale of Two Guantánamos: Mohamedou Ould Slahi’s World of Torture vs. the Senate’s Terrorist Fantasies
27. Guantánamo, military commissions, David Hicks: The collapse of Guantánamo’s military commissions (for Al-Jazeera – my post here)
28. Photos, Shaker Aamer: Photos: 13 Years in Guantánamo – Protest for Shaker Aamer Outside 10 Downing Street, February 14, 2015
29. UK protest, legal aid, We Stand With Shaker: Defending 800 Years of Habeas Corpus: We Stand With Shaker Attends Not the Global Law Summit in London on Monday
30. Photos, UK protest, legal aid, We Stand With Shaker: Photos and Report: Celebrating Magna Carta and Habeas Corpus and Campaigning to Save Legal Aid at the Not the Global Law Summit in London
31. Guantánamo, military commissions, David Hicks, Shaker Aamer, radio: Radio: Andy Worthington Speaks to Michael Slate and Scott Horton About Guantánamo, David Hicks and Shaker Aamer
32. Guantánamo, Periodic Review Boards: As Last Egyptian Is Cleared for Release from Guantánamo, Another Yemeni Faces Periodic Review Board
33. “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo”: Deptford Screening of “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” + Q&A with Andy Worthington, March 6

March 2015

Guantanamo prisoner and alleged "high-value detainee" Abu Zubaydah, in a photo taken before his capture.34. Torture, extraordinary rendition: European Court of Human Rights Orders Poland to Pay $262,000 to CIA “Black Site” Prisoners
35. Video, torture: Video: Andy Worthington Discusses the US Torture Program with Lembit Opik on Press TV
36. Guantánamo, torture, radio: Radio: Andy Worthington Discusses Guantánamo, Torture and the Failed Military Commissions with Jon Gold
37. Guantánamo, Periodic Review Boards: 13th Guantánamo Prisoner Seeks Release Through Periodic Review Board
38. Shaker Aamer, UK politics: Please Ask your MP to Support the Parliamentary Debate for Shaker Aamer, Mar 17
39. Shaker Aamer, UK politics: March 17: Come to the Green Card Lobby of MPs Before the Shaker Aamer Parliamentary Debate
40. Guantánamo, David Hicks: An Interview With David Hicks Following the Dismissal of His Guantánamo Conviction
41. Life after Guantánamo: Guantánamo Prisoners Released in Uruguay Struggle to Adapt to Freedom
42. Shaker Aamer: 284 British Imams and Community Leaders Call for Shaker Aamer’s Release from Guantánamo
43. Shaker Aamer, UK politics: UK Government Backs Parliamentary Motion to Secure Release of Shaker Aamer from Guantánamo
44. Shaker Aamer, UK politics: The Full Text of the Parliamentary Debate for Shaker Aamer, the Last British Resident in Guantánamo (1/2)
45. Shaker Aamer, UK politics: The Full Text of the Parliamentary Debate for Shaker Aamer, the Last British Resident in Guantánamo (2/2)
46. Guantánamo, Periodic Review Boards: Periodic Review Boards at Guantánamo: Another Yemeni Cleared for Release, Another Approved for Ongoing Detention
47. Guantánamo op-eds: Dispelling the Myths of Guantánamo Bay (for the Chicago Tribune, with Tom Wilner – my post here)
48. Guantánamo interviews: Strangers in a Strange Land: My Interview About the Struggles of the Six Men Freed from Guantánamo in Uruguay

April 2015

49. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: Guantánamo “An Endless Horror Movie”: Hunger Striker Appeals for Help to Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
50. Guantánamo, Afghanistan: Prisoners in Guantánamo Ask to be Freed Because of the End of the War in Afghanistan
51. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: Sen. Dianne Feinstein Urges Pentagon to End “Unnecessary” Force-Feeding at Guantánamo
52. Life after Guantánamo: Former Hunger Striker Abu Wa’el Dhiab and Other Guantánamo Prisoners Freed in Uruguay Discuss Their Problems
53. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: 90-Pound Guantánamo Hunger Striker Appeals in Court for Assistance from Pakistani Government
54. Shaker Aamer, We Stand With Shaker: We Stand With Shaker Aamer: 70th Celebrity Photo Published, As Campaign to Free Him from Guantánamo Continues
55. Guantánamo campaigns: As Gitmo Clock Marks 700 Days Since Obama’s Promise to Resume Releasing Prisoners, 57th Man Is Approved For Release
56. Guantánamo, Shaker Aamer: Obama to Release Ten Guantánamo Prisoners Including Shaker Aamer, Says Washington Post
57. Omar Khadr: Canadian Judge Grants Bail to Former Guantánamo Prisoner Omar Khadr
58. Closing Guantánamo: Cliff Sloan, Former Envoy for Guantánamo Closure, On Why Cleared Prisoners, Including Shaker Aamer, Must Be Freed
59. Guantánamo, Periodic Review Boards: Abdul Rahman Shalabi, Hunger Striker Since 2005, Asks Review Board to Approve His Release from Guantánamo

May 2015

Former Guantanamo prisoner Omar Khadr speaking to the media after his release from prison on bail on May 7, 2015. Photo made available by Michelle Shephard of the Toronto Star on Twitter.60. Omar Khadr: Former Guantánamo Prisoner Omar Khadr Says He Is “Ready” for Freedom; All Decent People Must Agree
61. Omar Khadr: Video: Omar Khadr Speaks, Says, “Freedom Is Way Better Than I Thought”
62. Closing Guantánamo: Senators Leahy, Feinstein and Durbin Tell Obama to Free 57 Cleared Guantánamo Prisoners “As Quickly As Possible”
63. Omar Khadr: Canadian Supreme Court Rules That Omar Khadr Was A Juvenile Prisoner, Not An Adult
64. Closing Guantánamo, Supreme Court: Retired Justice John Paul Stevens Calls for Compensation for the 57 Cleared Guantánamo Prisoners Still Held
65. Closing Guantánamo: Rights Groups Send An Open Letter to President Obama and Ashton Carter: Free the 57 Guantánamo Prisoners Approved for Release
66. Shaker Aamer: MPs Visit US to Discuss the Release of Shaker Aamer from Guantánamo with John McCain and Dianne Feinstein
67. Guantánamo: Former Guantánamo Prisoner Asim Al-Khalaqi Dies in Kazakhstan, Four Months After Being Freed
68. Abu Zubaydah: Incommunicado Forever: The Colossal Injustice of Torture Victim Abu Zubaydah’s Ongoing Imprisonment Without Charge or Trial at Guantánamo
69. Shaker Aamer: Clive Stafford Smith Confirms That Shaker Aamer Could Be Released from Guantánamo in June
70. Conditions in Guantánamo: “Petty and Nasty”: Guantánamo Commander Bans Lawyers From Bringing Food to Share with Prisoners

June 2015

Music legend Roger Waters (ex-Pink Floyd) supports We Stand With Shaker at the US Embassy on February 13, 2015 (Photo: Andy Worthington).71. Shaker Aamer: Shaker Aamer’s Latest Words from Guantánamo; Thanks Roger Waters, Says, “I Am An Innocent Man and a Good Person”
72. Guantánamo, hunger strikes, US courts: Appeals Court Refuses to Allow Government to Block Release of Guantánamo Force-Feeding Tapes
73. Life after Guantánamo: Der Spiegel Publishes Detailed Profile of the Former Guantánamo Prisoners in Uruguay, Struggling to Adapt to a New Life
74. Omar Khadr: Omar Khadr Speaks: Major Profile of Former Guantánamo Prisoner in the Toronto Star
75. Shaker Aamer: New York Times Publishes British MPs’ Hard-Hitting Op-Ed Calling for Shaker Aamer’s Release from Guantánamo
76. Deaths at Guantánamo: Remembering the Season of Death at Guantánamo
77. Prisoners released from Guantánamo: Who Are the Six Yemenis Freed from Guantánamo and Resettled in Oman?
78. Closing Guantánamo: The Path to Closing Guantánamo
79. Torture, accountability: Six Months After the CIA Torture Report, We’re Still Waiting for Accountability
80. Guantánamo, hunger strikes, US courts: Skeletal, 75-Pound Guantánamo Hunger Striker Tariq Ba Odah Seeks Release; Medical Experts Fear For His Life
81. Guantánamo, Periodic Review Boards: Shrapnel-Damaged Libyan Amputee Seeks Release from Guantánamo via Periodic Review Board

An archive of articles about British politics, January to June 2015

The 'March for Homes' in London on January 31, 2015 (Photo: Andy Worthington).1. Housing crisis: Join the ‘March for Homes’ in London This Saturday, January 31
2. Housing crisis: Photos: On the March for Homes, Thousands Defy the Rain to Demand Secure and Affordable Housing for Ordinary Londoners
3. Housing crisis: London’s Housing Crisis: Please Support the Sweets Way Tenants Facing Eviction in Barnet
4. Homelessness: Photos: March for the Homeless Opposite 10 Downing Street, London, April 15, 2015
5. Protest music: Andy Worthington’s Band The Four Fathers Release Free Song, ‘Tory Bullshit Blues’
6. Save the NHS: Please Support the Campaign for the Reinstatement of a Publicly-Owned NHS
7. UK election: Time for Proportional Representation: Whatever the Outcome of the General Election, Our Voting System is Unfair and Unrepresentative
8. UK election: UK Election: Tory Victory A Disaster for the People of Britain and the Democratic Process
9. Human rights: What Does It Say About the Tories That They Want to Scrap Human Rights Legislation?
10. Unemployment: The Scandal of Demonising the Unemployed When There Aren’t Enough Jobs
11. Battle of the Beanfield, Stonehenge, civil liberties: It’s 30 Years Since Margaret Thatcher Trashed the Travellers’ Movement at the Battle of the Beanfield
12. Anti-austerity protests: Photos: London Protests Against the Tories and Austerity
13: Habeas corpus, Shaker Aamer: 800 Years of Magna Carta: The Stench of Hypocrisy Regarding Habeas Corpus for Shaker Aamer and Other Guantánamo Prisoners
14. Anti-austerity protests: Photos: The Impressive 250,000-Strong Anti-Austerity March in London
15. Stonehenge, civil liberties: Stonehenge and the Summer Solstice, 30 Years After the Battle of the Beanfield
16. Battle of the Beanfield, Stonehenge, civil liberties, Guantánamo: Guantánamo, Stonehenge Book Readings and Music: Two Events with Hamja Ahsan – Radio Show on Sunday June 28, and Art Event in Hackney Wick on July 2
17. Anti-austerity protests: Video: Charlotte Church’s Inspirational Anti-Austerity Speech on June 20

And one about Europe: Can’t Pay, Won’t Pay: It’s Time for Greece to Say No to the Murderous Austerity of Its Creditors

Andy Worthington is a freelance investigative journalist, activist, author, photographer, film-maker and singer-songwriter (the lead singer and main songwriter for the London-based band The Four Fathers, whose debut album, ‘Love and War,’ is available for download or on CD via Bandcamp — also see here). He is the co-founder of the Close Guantánamo campaign (and the Countdown to Close Guantánamo initiative, launched in January 2016), the co-director of We Stand With Shaker, which called for the release from Guantánamo of Shaker Aamer, the last British resident in the prison (finally freed on October 30, 2015), and the author of The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison (published by Pluto Press, distributed by the University of Chicago Press in the US, and available from Amazon, including a Kindle edition — 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 six-part definitive Guantánamo prisoner list, and 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, the full military commissions list, and the chronological list of all Andy’s articles.

Please also consider joining the Close Guantánamo campaign, and, if you appreciate Andy’s work, feel free to make a donation.

2 Responses

  1. Andy Worthington says...

    When I posted this on Facebook, I wrote:

    As I count down to my quarterly fundraiser next week, here’s a reminder of what I’ve been doing – the latest chronological list of all my articles, from January to June last year, which, hopefully, is useful for anyone researching ‪‎Guantanamo‬, the campaign to free Shaker Aamer, and other topics including the housing crisis in the UK, and the 30th anniversary of The Battle of the Beanfield. I hope you find it useful, and will share it if you do.

  2. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks to everyone liking and sharing this. As I mentioned, I do hope my ongoing project of listing all my writing, from the last eight years and nine months, in chronological order like this is useful for people researching the long and disgraceful story of Guantanamo.

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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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