Guantanamo at 18, Out of the Headlines, But Activists Continue to Bear Witness

US Capitol at Night
Times Up for Mass Surveillance.
January 13, 2020
Cotton, Cruz, and Braun Attempt to Weaponize DOJ Against Dissidents
January 17, 2020

More than a decade after they were brought to Guantánamo, 40 men remain detained there, including five who have been approved by the U.S. government for transfer out of the detention camp. Most of the men have never been charged or convicted of any crime. 

At the same time, more than a decade after the end of the CIA torture program, the full Senate Intelligence Committee Report on torture is still classified, and people who actively participated in the program, like CIA Director Gina Haspel, have not only not faced accountability, but instead been promoted to high positions in government.

Since January 2, 2002, over 800 men have been imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay over the past two decades. Although the prison, its detainees, and the military commission ‘trials’ that are taking place there have fallen off the front pages, hundreds of activists continue to commemorate the opening of the prison, bearing witness to its inhumanity, unconstitutionality, and the racism and Islamophobia that allowed it to open and remain in operation.

This year, commemorations were held on both coasts, in Los Angeles on January 10, and in Washington, DC on January 11.

In Washington, DC DRAD joined with, Amnesty International USA, Center for Constitutional Rights, Close Guantánamo, CODEPINK, Council on American-Islamic Relations, Detention Watch Network, Justice for Muslims Collective, National Religious Campaign Against Torture, September 11 Families for Peaceful Tomorrows, Tsuru for Solidarity, Witness Against Torture for a rally at the White House followed by a procession to the Trump hotel.

In Los Angeles, DRAD supported a commemoration organized by Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace. Speakers included Mohammad Tajsar of the ACLU of Southern California, Michael Rapkin of the Guantanamo Bar, Fayaz Nawabi of CAIR, Carley Towne of Code Pink, Victor Conde of the Los Angeles Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild and Shane Que Hee of Out Against War. The Rev. Louis Chase of ICUJP was the M.C

Activists created a tableau of detainees and Stephen Fiske of ICUJP sang his original song “Close Guantanamo” (set to the tune of “Guantanamera”).

protesters in orange jumpsuits hold signs against guantanamo and torture