Humor, Humanity from Guantanamo Prisoners

Debra Sweet | November 11, 2014

Illustration by ​​James BurgessVice, the youth-oriented news/culture site, has broken new ground this week in featuring a series on Guantanamo. Extradordinary, because it gives voice to prisoners and disaffected former guards.  See "What Happens When I Try to Give My Guantánamo Guards Presents" by prisoner Enad Hassan, and My Time as a Guantanamo Bay Guard by Terry Holdbrooks.

Shaker Amer has written a fable, richly illustrated by Molly Crabtree, which describes how people get accustomed to something grossly abnormal.  Colonel John Bogdan Has No Nose refers to the Army Colonel who ran Guantanamo until June, and whose orders provoked the mass hunger strike last year.  The fabled King Bogdan has his nose cut off.  Then all his subjects get their noses removed:

They believe what they are doing in the name of the "War On Terror" is normal and that everyone should act exactly the same.

But it is time to tell the people of No Noseland that they should not cut off the noses of their children. It only spites them, and makes their world a nastier place. The world must tell the US Government that they are not normal, that they have lost their direction and are driving the rest of the world away from justice as well.

Illustration by Molly Crabtree

Humor, humanity, insight coming from the prisoners, while the demented U.S. government continues the brutality of indefinite detention.

Sunday Jan 11, 2015: Protest in Washington DC on the 13th anniversary of Guantanamo's opening.