Radio: I Discuss Guantánamo’s Collapsing Trials and “Forever Prisoners” with Misty Winston on TNT Radio


A promotional image for my interview with Misty Winston on TNT Radio on September 17, 2023.

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On Monday, I was delighted to talk — for the first time in a while — with the US-based radio host Misty Winston, a fiercely independent thinker (and a massive supporter of Julian Assange) for her show on TNT Radio, an Australian-based online radio station that is more generally known for indulging conspiracy theorists. Misty is a great supporter of my work, and frequently amplifies my posts on Twitter — sorry, X — where she has over 70,000 followers, and I’m honoured that, on her Substack, she chose to describe me as a “legend”, a “fighter” and a “relentless champion.”

Our interview is available here, starting 19 minutes into the show, and I’ve also embedded it below (although in the embed you can’t fast forward as easily as in the link above).

We began by looking at the situation at Guantánamo right now, where 30 men are still held, 16 of whom have been unanimously approved for release by high-level government review processes, although, as I explained, despite being approved for release they continue to languish at Guantánamo with no sign of when, if ever, they will actually be freed. This is in spite of the fact that, as of September 6, they had been waiting to be freed for between 348 and 1,013 days, and, in three cases, 4,975 days.

We also spoke about the case of former prisoner Ravil Mingazov — now, disgracefully, imprisoned in the UAE — which I reported about in depth in an article yesterday, and then discussed another former prisoner, our mutual friend Mansoor Adayfi, resettled in Serbia from Guantánamo in 2016, who I’ll be meeting for the very first time next week, at an hugely significant meeting in the EU Parliament, which I helped to organize with the formidable independent Irish MEPs Clare Daly and Mick Wallace, and which I wrote about here.

We also spoke about the devastating opinions and reports issued this year by a number of UN Special Rapporteurs and Working Groups, which I’ve written about extensively — see here, here and here, and, in particular, see this devastating report by Fionnuala Ní Aoláin, the Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms while Countering Terrorism, who, earlier this year, was the first Rapporteur to visit the prison, and whose conclusion was that, in numerous fundamental respects, the conditions for those still held amount to “ongoing cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment” that “may also meet the legal threshold for torture.”

We then spoke about the collective amnesia that permeates almost the whole of the United States when it comes to Guantánamo, and then discussed the recent and truly astonishing ruling by a military judge at Guantánamo in the case of the “high-value detainee” and torture victim Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, eviscerating the government’s claims that a man tortured and “conditioned” into obedience for nearly four years in CIA “black sites” could, voluntarily, make a self-incriminating statement four months after his arrival at Guantánamo in September 2006 when interrogated non-coercively by a so-called “clean teams” of interrogators from the FBI and other agencies.

This should mean the end of the claimed legitimacy of Guantánamo’s torture-tainted military commissions, but, as we also discussed, the inability to prosecute men who were tortured — and the need for plea deals to be reached instead — is currently being weaponized by the usual rabid Republicans, and has led to sadly predictable wavering by President Biden, which I’ll be writing about very soon.

My thanks again to Misty, and I hope you have time to listen to the show, and that you’ll share it if you find it useful.

* * * * *

Andy Worthington is a freelance investigative journalist, activist, author, photographer (of an ongoing photo-journalism project, ‘The State of London’), 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 (see the ongoing photo campaign here) and the successful We Stand With Shaker campaign of 2014-15, and the author of The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison 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 you can watch it online here, via the production company Spectacle, for £2.50).

In 2017, Andy became very involved in housing issues. He is the narrator of the documentary film, ‘Concrete Soldiers UK’, about the destruction of council estates, and the inspiring resistance of residents, he wrote a song ‘Grenfell’, in the aftermath of the entirely preventable fire in June 2017 that killed over 70 people, and, in 2018, he was part of the occupation of the Old Tidemill Wildlife Garden in Deptford, to try to prevent its destruction — and that of 16 structurally sound council flats next door — by Lewisham Council and Peabody.

Since 2019, Andy has become increasingly involved in environmental activism, recognizing that climate change poses an unprecedented threat to life on earth, and that the window for change — requiring a severe reduction in the emission of all greenhouse gases, and the dismantling of our suicidal global capitalist system — is rapidly shrinking, as tipping points are reached that are occurring much quicker than even pessimistic climate scientists expected. You can read his articles about the climate crisis here.

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, The Complete Guantánamo Files, 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.

6 Responses

  1. Andy Worthington says...

    When I posted this on Facebook, I wrote:

    Here’s my latest article, linking to, and discussing my latest interview, with Misty Winston on TNT Radio, in which we spoke about all the recent news regarding Guantanamo, including UN reports, the plight of Ravil Mingazov, and the recent damning ruling for the US government by a military judge, in the case of “high-value detainee” and torture victim Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri.

    I hope that you’ll have time to listen to the show, and that you’ll share it if you find it useful.

  2. Andy Worthington says...

    Kevin Hester wrote:

    The “Empire of Chaos” continuing to torture these people physically and mentally and the only place we hear about it is in the alternative media from journalists like Andy and Misty Winston.
    These crimes are being committed on what I consider to be land stolen from Cuba.

  3. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks for the kind words, Kevin. Yes, ‘stolen’ sounds like an accurate description – and it was only supposed to have been used as a coaling station, certainly not for a lawless prison designed to hold Muslim men indefinitely without any fundamental rights whatsoever.

  4. Anna says...

    First time a Guantanamo doctor declares someone unfit to stand trial because of the impact of the torture he underwent … Even one of the five 9/11 ones.
    But “[…] al-Shibh would be expected to remain in custody while court officials waited for him to become mentally competent again — if that ever happens.” The never ending cruelty, any excuse no matter how despicable, to keep this man from being freed and getting proper mental care. The latter apparently being blocked by (also) Biden!

  5. Andy Worthington says...

    Yes, it’s another devastating ruling, Anna, which I’ll be writing about soon, along with Biden’s reluctance to engage with the plea deal negotiations. Imagine the notion of waiting for someone to “become mentally competent again” when no efforts have been made, over two decades, to properly address his evident mental health problems, and no plans are even in place to ensure that he receives that care now. Never-ending cruelty, indeed – and also a clear abrogation by the US government of its legal requirements to provide the proper support to torture victims, as UN Rapporteur Fionnuala Ní Aoláin explained in her devastating report in June, noting that “the US Government’s failure to provide torture rehabilitation squarely contravenes its obligations under the Convention against Torture.”

  6. Andy Worthington says...

    For a Spanish translation, on the World Can’t Wait’s Spanish website, see ‘Radio: Platiqué acerca de los juicios en colapso de Guantánamo y los “prisioneros para siempre” con Misty Winston en TNT Radio’:

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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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