Thursday, October 18, 2007

Ghosts at Gitmo

Check out this Washington Post op-ed, "Going to See a Ghost." In it Gitanjali S. Gutierrez (right) commits to paper thoughts about her client, Majid Khan, just before her 1st visit with him at Guantánamo; thereafter, she explains, "military regulations will restrict my ability to speak publicly about the case."
A lawyer for the Guantánamo Global Justice Initiative of the Center for Constitutional Rights and the 1st habeas attorney to travel to the detention center in Cuba, Gutierrez writes that Khan lived in the United States as an asylee from age 16 until age 22, when he returned to his birthplace to marry. There, she continues, he "was kidnapped by Pakistani police, who turned him over to the CIA," in whose secret custody he was held for 3 years, as 1 of the several off-the-books captives who've come to be called "ghost detainees." Calling for fairness in Khan's case, Gutierrez concludes:
In literature, ghosts are symbols not only of mortality but also of accountability. ... For three years, Majid Khan was a ghost. Now he has reappeared. Let his terrifying experiences serve to remind us of the danger posed when power goes unchecked -- and of our duty not to be silent but to stand and fight for the fundamental rights that protect us all.

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