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Not Another Day in Guantánamo Demonstration

 

 

MAy 23rd ImageFriday 23 May

1200hrs

Trafalgar Sq, London

Dress – VFP Hoody

On 23 May 2013, at the height of media focus on the ongoing hunger strike at Guantánamo Bay, Barack Obama made another promise to close the prison camp. In spite of positive measures in that time, such as the release of 12 prisoners, 154 prisoners remain, almost all of whom have been held without charge or trial for over 12 years.

With an ongoing hunger strike and daily human rights abuses against prisoners, the Obama administration continues to demonstrate that it has no interest in justice or freedom.

As part of an international day of action coordinated by Witness Against Torture (USA), Veterans For Peace will be joining the London Guantánamo Campaign for a demonstration to remind the US government and the mainstream media that Guantánamo prisoners do not only matter when politicians care to notice. These prisoners, including South London Shaker Aamer suffer injustice and indignity every day and have done so for over 12 years. Enough is enough…Not another broken promise! Not another day in Guantánamo!

The May 23rd Day of Action is coordinated by Witness Against Torture in collaboration with Amnesty International, Blue Lantern Project, the Center for Constitutional Rights, CloseGitmo.net, Code Pink, London Guantánamo Campaign, the National Religious Campaign Against Torture, No More Guantánamos, the Torture Abolition and Survivor Support Coalition, Veterans for Peace, and World Can’t Wait. For a list of actions worldwide, please see www.witnesstorture.org

  • Garry Harriman 17/05/2014, 15:41

    I am ashamed to say that Guantanamo and the people languishing within the confines of that abhorrent place, have never been at the forefront of my mind.

    Indeed, I have to freely admit, that I actually thought that those there deserved to be there if they were indeed in there for legitimate reasons, actually causing harm or the intent to cause harm to others. Upon reflection, however, I actually do not and have not ever believed in the so called `war on terror` and the threat that supposedly is posed to National Security from so called terror groups, more so when they were created by us in the first place. Further, I have serious doubts re` what actually happened on September 11th, 2001, the event that `changed the world forever`. I`ll stop there, but, suffice to say, in my view, the real truth behind these events will never surface to the public domain.

    On that logic then, I asked myself, are the majority of inmates confined in Cuba innocent of the crimes they that many have not even been charged with? I am also struck by the lack of commentary on this post and wonder of this subject is still not understood well (as in my case) and/or. if there still remains a high degree of ambivalence on this matter.

    It seems that many of the people in this situation held in the Republic of Cuba may mirror many of the facets of the land mass they occupy. Guantanamo was seized by the USA after an agreement following the War of Impendence form Spain under the Platt Amendment (if memory serves me well) and, understandably, still causes huge resentment to this day. Cuba is still subject to cruel and crippling trade embargo that was put in place in 1961 after the `Bay of Pigs` and is responsible for the dire economic decay of the nation today that accelerated following the collapse of the USSR. I have been to the country on 2 occasions can see the damage that has been inflicted despite the charm and resolve that Cubans exhibit. They do without, and I also think that materialism and the lack of it, in this case, is not such a bad thing after all.

    Thank you, VFPUK for again awakening my conscience on this matter and for all that you do to make this life and this planet a better place for all of us.

    Garry Harriman
    VFPUK and USA
    RAF 1987 -2006
    Ga, USA

  • Willy Bach 23/05/2014, 00:48

    I share Garry’s thoughts on the War on Terror and its consequences. Thanks for putting it so articulately.

    I would also say that for Britain and other allies of the USA, torture is like a defining moment. It expresses who we are on the scale of civilisation. We must never again be drawn into a war that is in itself a war crime and never allow ourselves to be so steeped in the rhetoric and justifications of the war in order to participate in its ugliest deeds.

    The US routinely uses torture. We must proclaim that we don’t do torture – an mean it.

    Willy Bach
    VFP UK & Stand Fast (Australia)
    RE 1963-1970
    Brisbane
    Australia

    • Garry Harriman 23/05/2014, 15:40

      Hello, Willy.

      Thank you for your reply and your interesting comments. You`ve done well for yourself ending up out there! I had a chance to go to Melbourne, refurbishing luxury yachts when I left the RAF bit turned it down after researching more and discovered the wage I was to be paid was extremely low with a very high cost of living! I ended up in Goose Bay, Labrador, Canada, and now here I am in the USA! Best laid plans and all that!

      Isn`t it great to be part of an organisation such as VFP?

      Take care, and `put a shrimp on the Barbie for me, mate!`

      A joke: 2 Aussie truckers are planning to take a tour of the country. One asks the other `what route are ya taking, mate?` `I think the wife deserves to go mate` says the other!

      Garry