Military Commissions

Video and Report: The Incredibly Powerful “Close Guantánamo!” Event in the EU Parliament, September 28, 2023


My detailed report about, and the video of ‘Close Guantánamo!’, an extraordinary and hugely powerful three-hour event held at the EU Parliament on September 28, 2023, featuring nine speakers, including Mansoor Adayfi (on what was only his second trip to freedom since he finally got a passport earlier this year) and two other former prisoners, two lawyers, a UN Rapporteur, myself and others, hosted by the inspiring independent Irish MEPs Clare Daly and Mick Wallace. As the event highlighted, the priorities for anyone concerned with justice, and with bringing to an end Guantánamo’s vile existence, are to resettle 16 men still held who have been approved for release (for which the countries of EU can help), providing adequate medical care for everyone still held at the prison, reminding the US government that it continues to have an obligation to ensure the welfare of former prisoners, even after their release, and, eventually, seeking accountability for the crimes that the US government has committed, and still continues to commit at Guantánamo.

Despite 9/11 Accused Being Mentally “Unfit To Stand Trial,” Biden Refuses Plea Deal That Would Provide Mental Health Care, As Required By International Law


My analysis of the significance of a DoD Sanity Board’s assessment that Ramzi bin al-Shibh, one of five men accused of involvement in the 9/11 attacks, who are caught up in seemingly endless pre-trial hearings in Guantánamo’s broken military commissions, is unfit to stand trial because he suffers from PTSD and psychosis. That assessment has been accepted by the military judge in the 9/11 case, but meanwhile President Biden has refused to accept conditions requested by the 9/11 co-accused in plea deals that have been ongoing for the last 18 months, since prosecutors finally recognized that the use of torture had made a successful trial untenable. The conditions include the lifelong provision of adequate physical and mental health care, which has not been provided at Guantánamo, and which, ironically, has contributed significantly to bin al-Shibh’s inability to stand trial.

Radio: I Discuss Guantánamo’s Discredited Torture Trials with Scott Horton


Linking to, and discussing my recent interview with Scott Horton about a recent damning ruling against the government by the trial judge, Col. Lanny Acosta, in the military commission case of Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, accused of being the mastermind of the bombing of the USS Cole in 2000. The ruling specifically prohibits the use of self-incriminating statements made by al-Nashiri to a so-called “clean team” of interrogators at Guantánamo after he had been held and tortured for nearly four years in CIA “black sites,” and Col. Acosta’s devastating conclusion was that al-Nashiri’s torture and “conditioning” in the “black sites” was so severe that he was incapable of delivering any kind of self-incriminating statement on a voluntary basis.

Video: I Discuss the Collapse of Guantánamo’s Military Commissions on “Unauthorized Disclosure” with Kevin Gosztola and Rania Khalek


Linking to, and discussing my recent interview about Guantánamo with Kevin Gosztola and Rania Khalek for their “Unauthorized Disclosure” podcast, including a discussion about the recent damning ruling against the government by Col. Lanny Acosta, the military judge in the case of “black site” torture victim Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri.

Trial Judge Destroys Guantánamo’s Military Commissions, Rules That “Clean Team” Interrogations Cannot Undo the Effects of Torture


A long read featuring substantial excerpts from, and my detailed analysis of an absolutely devastating ruling against the US authorities in the military commission pre-trial hearings for Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri. A Saudi national held and tortured in CIA “black sites” for nearly four years before his transfer to Guantánamo in September 2006, al-Nashiri’s trial judge, Col. Lanny Acosta, Jr., has just refused to allow prosecutors to use self-incriminating statements al-Nashiri made to a “clean team” of interrogators four months after his arrival at Guantánamo, because, he has concluded, there is no way that he was acting freely, given the extent of the torture to which was subjected in the “black sites,” and the “conditioning” that accompanied it, requiring him to tell his interrogators what they wanted to hear, to prevent further torture.

After First Ever Guantánamo Visit, UN Rapporteur Finds Dehumanized, Traumatized Men Subjected to Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment That May Rise to the Level of Torture


The first of two articles about the devastating report about Guantánamo that was issued on June 26 by Fionnuala Ní Aoláin, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms while Countering Terrorism, following her visit to Guantánamo in February, which was the first ever visit to the prison by a Special Rapporteur. Despite improvements in conditions under President Obama and President Biden, she concluded that the detention regime at the prison continues to represent “ongoing cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment”, and “may also meet the legal threshold for torture.”

Searching for Justice at Guantánamo: The New Arab Podcast About Abd Al-Rahim Al-Nashiri, Featuring One of His Lawyers, Mansoor Adayfi and Me


Linking to, and discussing, The New Arab’s podcast, “Searching for Justice at Guantánamo: Tainted evidence and the fight for accountability,” in which Nadine Talaat tells the story of the prison, and, in particular, the case of Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, through interviews with myself, Katie Carmon, one of his military commission lawyers, and former prisoner Mansoor Adayfi.

UN Condemns Arbitrary Detention of Guantánamo Prisoner and Torture Victim Abd Al-Rahim Al-Nashiri, and Calls for His Release


My report about a devastating opinion issued by the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, regarding Abd Al-Rahim Al-Nashiri, held and tortured in CIA “black sites” for nearly four years, between 2002 and 2006, and at Guantánamo since September 2006. Although he has been charged in the military commissions, the Working Group concludes that his treatment has been so lawless and brutal that it constitutes arbitrary detention, and calls for his immediate release. The opinion follows a similarly devastating opinion relating to Abu Zubaydah, which I wrote about at the end of April.

The Broken Old Men of Guantánamo


A major article examining the cases of the 14 men still held at Guantánamo — “high-value detainees” and torture victims — who have not been approved for release, and what the US authorities can and should do with them, given that many have significant physical and/or mental health problems relating to their torture, or to the inadequacy of medical care at the prison. Following recent, highly critical reports by the UN and the ICRC, I look at the possibility of plea deals to resolve the deadlock in the trials of those who have been charged, and who may end up remaining at Guantánamo, but in a new facility providing “rehabilitation from torture, and adequate medical care”, and also suggest that other men not charged may also have to be provided with a similar, but non-penal facility providing the same level of care.

Saudi Engineer Ghassan Al-Sharbi Sent Home From Guantánamo; 31 Men Remain, 17 Approved For Release


Announcing the good news that Ghassan Al-Sharbi, a Saudi national, has been repatriated from Guantánamo after nearly 21 years’ imprisonment, and tracing his long journey through the military commissions, the prison’s broken trial system, and its over-cautious administrative review processes, the Guantánamo Review Task Force and the Periodic Review Boards.

Back to the top

Back to home page

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).
Email Andy Worthington

CD: Love and War

The Four Fathers on Bandcamp

The Guantánamo Files book cover

The Guantánamo Files

The Battle of the Beanfield book cover

The Battle of the Beanfield

Stonehenge: Celebration & Subversion book cover

Stonehenge: Celebration & Subversion

Outside The Law DVD cover

Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo


Posts & Comments

World Wide Web Consortium



Powered by WordPress

Designed by Josh King-Farlow

Please support Andy Worthington, independent journalist:


In Touch

Follow me on Facebook

Become a fan on Facebook

Subscribe to me on YouTubeSubscribe to me on YouTube

The State of London

The State of London. 16 photos of London

Andy's Flickr photos



Tag Cloud

Abu Zubaydah Al-Qaeda Andy Worthington British prisoners Center for Constitutional Rights CIA torture prisons Close Guantanamo Donald Trump Four Fathers Guantanamo Housing crisis Hunger strikes London Military Commission NHS NHS privatisation Periodic Review Boards Photos President Obama Reprieve Shaker Aamer The Four Fathers Torture UK austerity UK protest US courts Video We Stand With Shaker WikiLeaks Yemenis in Guantanamo