Andy Worthington: An Archive of Articles About Guantánamo, My UK Housing Activism and Other Writing – Part 23, July to December 2017


A screenshot of Andy Worthington calling for the closure of Guantanamo outside the White House on January 11, 2018.Please support my work as a reader-funded journalist! I’m currently trying to raise $2500 (£2000) to support my writing and campaigning on Guantánamo and related issues over the next three months of the Trump administration.


This article is the 23rd 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 nearly 3,000 articles I have published since I first began publishing articles here in May 2007, which, otherwise, are not available in chronological order in any readily accessible form.

I receive no institutional funding for my work, and so, if you appreciate what I do as a reader-funded journalist and activist, please consider making a donation via the Paypal ‘Donate’ button above. Any amount, however large or small, will be very gratefully received — and if you are able to become a regular monthly sustainer, that would be particularly appreciated. To do so, please tick the box marked, “Make this a monthly donation,” and fill in the amount you wish to donate every month.

As I note every time I put together a chronological list of my articles, my mission, as it has been since my research in 2006-07, for my book The Guantánamo Files, 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.

The period covered by this 23rd list — featuring 85 articles — continued to deal with the fallout regarding Guantánamo of Donald Trump being in the White House, when, sadly, the generally unfulfilled threats of the first six months gave way to concrete — and deplorable — actions. The first was a decision to no longer monitor the health of hunger strikers, which seemed designed, heavy-handedly, to try and get prisoners to stop refusing food (an unlikely course of action, given that hunger striking tends to be the action of prisoners who assess that they have no other power, and no other way of being heard). The second was the Pentagon’s threat to destroy prisoners’ art, which arose after a show of prisoners’ artwork in New York annoyed the government, presumably by daring to convey to the public that the men held at Guantánamo were human beings with feelings and sensitivity.

Neither policy reflected well on Donald Trump and his administration, but sadly he remains impervious to criticism, and two months into 2018, it would be impossible to suggest that there is any light at the end of the tunnel for the 41 men still held. I will, however, continue to monitor the situation, to write about it, and to campaign for the prison’s closure, both here and via the Close Guantánamo campaign that I established with the US attorney Tom Wilner in 2012.

This six-month period also saw a massive increase in my involvement in housing activism in London. As someone who lives in social housing (not-for-profit rented housing), the crisis of unaffordable housing has long been of concern to me  — in particular, since a permanent housing bubble became a substitute for meaningful economic activity 20 years ago, under New Labour. However, since the Tories took power in 2010, the crisis has only got worse, and now, for the first time ever, hard-working, productive and decently-paid people are finding it impossible to carry on living in London, such is a the all-consuming greed of the housing market, while the less economically robust are pushed out after having their homes destroyed.

The Grenfell Tower fire last June, was, in hindsight, the trigger for my increased activity as a housing campaigner. Just after it, I attended a panel discussion about Grenfell that was organised by ASH (Architects for Social Housing), where I met film-maker Nikita Woolfe, who asked me to be the narrator of her new documentary film, ‘Concrete Soldiers UK’, which was released in December. Prior to that, however, I had become concerned by the situation in Haringey, in north London, where the Labour council was trying to enter into a deal with the international property developer Lendlease, which would have led to the destruction of council estates, and had also been alerted to developments in Lewisham where I live, via a screening of the documentary ’Dispossession’ that I attended in September.

As a result, I wrote a new song for my band The Four Fathers, ‘Grenfell’, which a German film crew recorded us playing in October, just before we released our second album, ‘How Much Is A Life Worth?’ We also played a benefit gig in Tottenham in September (hot on the heels of an inspiring anti-war protest gig in Docklands, where we played ‘Masters of War’ as police charged at protestors, and a helicopter flew down low), and I set up ‘No Social Cleansing in Lewisham’ as a focal point for the various Lewisham campaigns, with a benefit gig at the Birds Nest in November, featuring three bands (including The Four Fathers), two spoken word artists, a rapper and a socialist choir.

I also continued to post a photo a day to my pages ‘The State of London’ on Facebook and Twitter, drawing from the photos that I’ve been taking in all London’s 120 postcodes on daily bike rides over the last six years, which I hope you’ll have time to look at, if you haven’t seen them already.

Two months into 2018, all of the above — my Guantánamo work, my housing activism, and my daily photos of London — are all ongoing, and I hope you’ll continue to take an interest in my various endeavours. In closing, I hope that the list below is helpful.

An archive of Guantánamo articles: Part 23, July to December 2017

July 2017

Some of the Close Guantanamo supporters who have stood with posters calling on Donald Trump to close Guantanamo over the first 100 days of his presidency.1. Guantánamo, Donald Trump: For US Independence Day, Please Join Us in Telling Donald Trump to Close Guantánamo
2. Omar Khadr: Canada Agrees to Pay $10m Compensation to Brutalized Former Child Prisoner Omar Khadr, Held at Guantánamo for Ten Years
3. Guantánamo media: For Witness Against Torture, My Independence Day Article About Tyranny at Guantánamo Bay
4. Guantánamo, Donald Trump: Donald Trump’s Stumbling Efforts to Revive Guantánamo
5. Life after Guantánamo: “Choose Peace”: An Inspiring Message of Tolerance From Former Guantánamo Prisoner and Torture Victim Mustafa Ait Idir
6. Guantánamo, Donald Trump: Six Months of Trump: Is Closing Guantánamo Still Possible?

August 2017

7. Guantánamo: Sufyian Barhoumi, the Peaceful Algerian Cleared for Release But Still Trapped in Guantánamo
8. Life after Guantánamo: A Dream of Freedom Soured: Former Guantánamo Prisoners in Tunisia Face Ongoing Persecution
9. Torture: Judge Confirms That Trial of James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen, Architects of CIA Torture Program, Will Go Ahead
10. Guantánamo, military commissions: The Absurdity of Guantánamo: As US Prepares to Release Ahmed Al-Darbi in Plea Deal, Less Significant Prisoners Remain Trapped Forever
11. Guantánamo, Donald Trump: Donald Trump Is Still Trying to Work Out How to Expand the Use of Guantánamo Rather Than Closing It for Good

September 2017

12. Guantánamo media: Detailed Los Angeles Review of Books Article Asks, “What Are We Still Doing in Guantánamo?”
13. Torture: 11 Years After CIA Torture Victims Arrived at Guantánamo, Whistleblowers Joseph Hickman and John Kiriakou on How Torture “Became Legal” After 9/11
14. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: EXCLUSIVE: Fears for Long-Term Hunger Striker at Guantánamo: Lawyers Urge Court to Order Independent Medical Examination
15. Guantánamo, 9/11: Calling for the Closure of Guantánamo on the 16th Anniversary of the 9/11 Attacks
16. Guantánamo, accountability: At Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Former Guantánamo Prisoner Djamel Ameziane Asks US to Apologize, and Calls for Prison’s Closure
17. Guantánamo, accountability: “Guantánamo Was Created to Destroy People, to Destroy Muslims”: Ex-Prisoner Djamel Ameziane’s Powerful Statement to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
18. Guantánamo media: Former Obama Security Official Says Keeping Guantánamo Open “Damages Our National Security”
19. Omar Khadr: Omar Khadr’s Bail Conditions: On 31st Birthday, Judge Allows Internet Access, Refuses to Lift Ban on Free Travel within Canada, or Unsupervised Meeting with Sister
20. Torture, Iraq: 14 Years On, US Court Rules that Iraqis Tortured at Abu Ghraib Can Sue US Contractor
21. Guantánamo media: An Extraordinarily Powerful, Poetic Article about Guantánamo and the Sea by Former Prisoner Mansoor Adayfi
22. Guantánamo campaigns: No Justice at Guantánamo After 250 Days of Trump

October 2017

Former Guantanamo prisoner Mourad Benchellali, who was released in 2004, but is still not free from the unjustified stigma of having been in Guantanamo.23. Life after Guantánamo: Life After Guantánamo: The Story of Mourad Benchellali, Freed 13 Years Ago But Still Stigmatized
24. Guantánamo, torture: Ten Years On, Guantánamo’s Former Chief Prosecutor on Why He Resigned Because of Torture, and How It Must Never Be US Policy Again
25. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: Trump’s Disturbing New Guantánamo Policy: Allowing Hunger Strikers to Starve to Death
26. Donald Trump. enemy combatants: What Should Trump Do With the US Citizen Seized in Syria and Held in Iraq as an “Enemy Combatant”?
27. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: New York Times Finally Reports on Trump’s Policy of Letting Guantánamo Hunger Strikers Die; Rest of Mainstream Media Still Silent
28. Guantánamo, Supreme Court, military commissions: Abandoning Guantánamo: The Supreme Court’s Shame as a Military Commission Appeal Is Turned Down
29. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: Guantánamo Hunger Striker Ahmed Rabbani, Left to Die by Trump, Calls for “Basic Justice – a Fair Trial or Freedom”
30. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: “When Will My Organs Fail? When Will My Heart Stop?”: Guantánamo Hunger Striker Khalid Qassim Fears Death Under Trump’s New Policy
31. Guantánamo, military commissions: Ahmed Al-Darbi, Admitted Terrorist at Guantánamo, Receives 13-Year Sentence Following 2014 Plea Deal
32. Radio, Guantánamo, hunger strikes: Radio: On the Scott Horton Show, Andy Worthington Discusses Trump Letting Guantánamo Hunger Strikers Die, the Failures of the Supreme Court and More
33. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: Celebrities Fasting With the Hunger Striking Guantánamo Prisoners That Donald Trump Is Allowing to Die
34. Mohamedou Ould Slahi, life after Guantánamo: Mohamedou Ould Slahi: One Year of Freedom, and the Uncensored Version of “Guantánamo Diary”

November 2017

35. Guantánamo, terrorism, Donald Trump: Donald Trump’s Racism and Dangerous Lawlessness Revealed in Response to New York Attack; Proposal to Send Sayfullo Saipov to Guantánamo is Shameful
36. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: Former Guantánamo Prisoner Lakhdar Boumediene Condemns “Cruel, Sadistic” New Policy of Allowing Hunger Strikers to Starve
37. Deaths at Guantánamo: Guantánamo Suicides “Unlikely,” Says Investigator Jeffrey Kaye in New Edition of His Book, “Cover-up at Guantánamo”
38. Canada, torture accountability, Guantánamo: Torture Accountability in Canada: After Payments to Three Men Tortured in Syria, Former Guantánamo Prisoner Djamel Ameziane Also Seeks Damages
39. Guantánamo, military commissions: A New Low for Guantánamo’s Credibility: The Brief But Absurd Imprisonment of the Military Commissions’ Chief Defense Counsel
40. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: Guantánamo detainee: US changed force-feeding policy (for Al-Jazeera)
41. Guantánamo campaigns: 300 Days of Trump: Join Our Photo Campaign Calling for the Closure of Guantánamo
42. Guantánamo media: After Powerful Screening of ‘Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo’ at Westminster University, I’m Available for Further Events
43. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: Guantánamo’s Oldest Prisoner Calls Conditions “Hell,” Says, “We Are Getting Collective Punishment Because of the Hunger Strike”
44. Guantánamo art: Persistent Dehumanization at Guantánamo: US Claims It Owns Prisoners’ Art, Just As It Claims to Own Their Memories of Torture
45. Guantánamo, military commissions: The Latest Scandal of the Military Commissions at Guantánamo: A Death Penalty Case Without a Death Penalty Lawyer
46. Guantánamo art: Curator of Guantánamo Art Show Responds to Authorities’ Threats to Burn Prisoners’ Work: “Art Censorship and Destruction Are Tactics of Terrorist Regimes, Not US Military”

December 2017

47. Guantánamo art: The Guantánamo Art Scandal That Refuses to Go Away
48. Guantánamo, torture, Human Rights Day: Guantánamo, The Torture Report and Human Rights Day: America’s Unaddressed Legacy of Torture and Arbitrary Detention
49. Guantánamo, hunger strikes: Guantánamo Hunger Striker Khalid Qassim Says, “We Are Like Lab Rats,” Says Doctor Told Him, “If You Lose Organs, It Is Your Choice”
50. Guantánamo, torture: Nils Melzer, UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, Accuses US of Still Using Torture at Guantánamo, Asks to Visit and Meet Prisoners Unsupervised
51. Guantánamo art, Mohamed Ould Slahi: Guantánamo Writer Mohamedou Ould Slahi’s Devastating Criticism of US Claims That It Owns and Can Destroy Prisoners’ Art
52. Guantánamo, Donald Trump: Guantánamo Lawyer: It is “Entirely Unprecedented” for Trump to “Take the Position That There Will Be No Transfers out of Guantánamo Without Regard to the Facts”

An archive of articles about British politics, July to December 2017

July to August 2017

"F*ck off back to your wheat field": a great placard from the 'Not One Day More' protest against Theresa May and the Tories in London on July 1, 2017 (Photo: Andy Worthington).1. Photos, Theresa May protest: My photos of ‘Not One Day More’, a Huge Protest Against Theresa May in London, July 1, 2017
2. Protest music: Four London Gigs for Andy Worthington’s Band The Four Fathers, Promoting Songs from Forthcoming Album, How Much Is A Life Worth?
3. Housing crisis: Haringey and the Wholesale Social Cleansing of London: Thousands of Social Tenants to Be Removed Via Estate Regeneration
4. Protest music: Video: Andy Worthington’s Band The Four Fathers Play ‘Rebel Soldier’ Live at Vinyl Deptford
5. Jeremy Corbyn, Brexit: Message to Jeremy Corbyn: You Represent Hope Not Just Because You Oppose Austerity, But Because You Must Save Us From Brexit
6. Protest music: Video: Andy Worthington’s Band The Four Fathers Play Bob Dylan’s ‘Masters of War’ at Vinyl Deptford
7. Grenfell Tower fire: Video: Architects for Social Housing’s Powerful Public Meeting, ‘The Truth About Grenfell Tower’, and Their Detailed Report
8. Photos, WOMAD: My Photos: The Wet But Still Wonderful WOMAD Festival 2017
9. Protest music: Video: Andy Worthington’s Band The Four Fathers Play Anti-Austerity Song ‘Riot’, Released on Sixth Anniversary of UK Riots
10. London photos: The First 100 Days of My Photo Project, ‘The State of London’

September to October 2017

11. Protest music: My Band The Four Fathers Release New Single, ‘She’s Back’, About Pussy Riot, As Maria Alyokhina Releases Memoir, ‘Riot Days’
12. Photos, anti-war protests: Photos: Festival of Resistance Against the DSEI Arms Fair in London’s Docklands, Sept. 9, 2017
13. Housing crisis: Social Cleansing and the Destruction of Council Estates Exposed at Screening of ‘Dispossession’ by Endangered New Cross Residents
14. Protest music: My Band The Four Fathers Release ‘Equal Rights And Justice For All,’ Defending Habeas Corpus, Opposing Arbitrary Detention at Guantánamo and in the UK
15. Housing crisis, Jeremy Corbyn: The Crime of Destroying Social Housing in London – and the Significance (Or Not) of Jeremy Corbyn’s Response
16. Housing crisis, protest music: No Social Cleansing in Lewisham! Fundraiser for Tidemill and Achilles Street Campaigns with Potent Whisper, The Four Fathers, Commie Faggots at the Birds Nest, Nov. 12
17. Housing crisis: Tottenham Housing Campaigners Seek a Judicial Review to Save Their Homes from a Rapacious Labour Council and the Predatory Developer Lendlease
18. Housing crisis: How Architects for Social Housing Took On the Dangerous Neo-Liberal Contempt for Social Housing of Patrik Schumacher and Others at the Barbican

November to December 2017

A promotional poster for 'Concrete Soldiers UK', designed by the Artful Dodger. The film, directed by Nikita Woolfe, was released in December 2017.19. Housing crisis: ‘Concrete Soldiers UK’: New Documentary Film About Social Cleansing and Council Estate Destruction in London Features Andy Worthington as Narrator
20. Housing crisis, protest music: ‘No Social Cleansing in Lewisham’: After Success of Gig in Deptford on Nov. 12, Campaigners Plan to Stage Events in Other Boroughs
21. London photos: Celebrating 200 Days of Andy Worthington’s Photo Project, ‘The State of London’
22. US extradition: Support Lauri Love, Computer Expert and Activist, Who Faces Extradition to the US in a Life-Threatening Betrayal of Justice
23. Protest music: How Much Is A Life Worth? New Album Released Today by The Four Fathers, London Journalist and Activist Andy Worthington’s Band
24. Housing crisis: How People Power Is Stopping Social Cleansing in Haringey
25. Housing crisis: No Social Cleansing in Lewisham: Please Join the New Campaign!
26. Housing crisis: Just Two Days Until the World Premiere of ‘Concrete Soldiers UK’, About Community Resistance to the Destruction of Council Estates, Which I Narrate
27. Housing crisis: Following the Successful World Premiere of ‘Concrete Soldiers UK’ at the Cinema Museum, the Next Screening is at Deptford Cinema on Dec. 18
28. Brexit: Finally! Theresa May and the Tories Suffer a Major Defeat on Brexit as MPs Secure a Meaningful Vote on the Final Deal
29. Grenfell Tower fire, protest music: Grenfell, Six Months On: The Four Fathers’ New Song Remembering Those Who Lost Their Lives and Calling for Those Responsible to be Held Accountable

And a few anomalies:

1. Artificial intelligence: Guest Post: Tom Pettinger, PhD Student, Examines Artificial Intelligence – Is It the Saviour of Humanity, Or Its Destroyer?
2. Life offline: Switch Off Your Devices and Have a Week Off: Why Headspace, Silence and Human Interaction is Good for Us
3. Life offline: Radio: I Discuss My Contention That We Should Take a Break from Constant Phone and Internet Use with Chris Cook on Gorilla Radio
4. Gun control: My Thoughts on Gun Control, Based on a Comparative Analysis of the US and the UK

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 music is available via Bandcamp). He is the co-founder of the Close Guantánamo campaign (and the Donald Trump No! Please Close Guantánamo initiative, launched in January 2017), 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.

3 Responses

  1. Andy Worthington says...

    When I posted this on Facebook, I wrote:

    Here’s my latest article – hopefully a useful chronological list of all the articles I wrote and published between July and December 2017, 85 articles in total, about #Guantanamo, the primary focus of my work for the last 12 years, and also about the UK housing crisis, which I’ve increasingly been focusing on since the #Grenfell Tower fire last June, which brought home to me how disposable the lives of those who live in social housing are to those supposedly responsible for them. I hope you find the list useful. Over the last 12 years, it’s been my hope that these lists (23 in total now) primarily enable anyone researching Guantanamo and the “war on terror” to follow developments chronologically.
    And if you like my work, do consider making a donation to support me, as a reader-funded journalist and activist.

  2. Infoprovincia says...

    Suppose that too is what the Mayor of London wants. More affordable apartments being built over tube lines and railway lines. Whilst there’s uncertainty about Grenfell tower that was severely damaged by the fire and many people are still struggling to find a place to live after the dreadful disaster that lives have been lost. Has Kensington & Chelsea Council thought about knocking down that burnt out building and replacing it with a memorial garden along with new apartments being built around the memorial garden that once stood the tower before the fire happened last year. Plus Latimer Rd tube station could be renamed as Grenfell by the Mayor as the tube station on the Hammersmith & City and Circle Lines is very close to the scorched tower block.

  3. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks for your comments, Infoprovincia. We will have to wait and see what the community decides about the future of Grenfell, now that the council and the government seem to have accepted that imposing their own wishes is a step too far when it comes to insensitivity.

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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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