After up to 12 years, some of the prisoners just released are off hunger strike, and in “freedom.” This deal was put together last March, reportedly because of the huge pressure the Guantanamo prisoners’ hunger strike put on Obama. But it took another nine months, during which the prisoners could have died, before their release.
One of those released is Abu Wa’el Dhiab, who has been suing the U.S. over forced-feeding he’s endured for years, and suing to get the government to release videotape of the feedings. Reprieve said, about him:
“As a result of the conditions inside the prison and the callous treatment he has received, Mr Dhiab’s health has now deteriorated to such an extent that he is confined to a wheelchair. Recent revelations revealed that Mr. Dhiab is being denied access to his wheelchair, meaning he is brutally dragged from his cell and force-fed against his will every day.”
Glenn Greenwald, as he does frequently, captures the horrors of Guantanamo in Release of Six Detainees After Twelve Years Highlights the Historic Evil of Guantánamo:
“For all the years of propagandistic assertions that the detainees are dangerous ‘terrorists,’ almost none has been charged with any crime by a government that has repeatedly (and with disgraceful ease) convicted people on terrorism allegations. They have just been kept in cages, indefinitely, in the middle of an ocean, thousands of miles from their homes. Nine detainees have died at the camp: several allegedly by suicide, others from illness. One of the detainees kept at the camp (released in 2008) was an Al Jazeera photojournalist, Sami Al-Haj, who was encaged for six years with no charges or trial and with almost no U.S. media notice (even as the U.S. media endlessly denounces the detention of U.S. journalists by other governments).”