Original Blog Reporting: TTD Interviews Former Guantanamo Prisoner
TMV encourages original reporting on blogs. And once again The Talking Dog is offering an original Q&A HERE — this time with a former Guantanamo prisoner.
As usual, it’s hard to excerpt from it because there is so much “meat” in the interview that you MUST read it ALL yourself. But we’ll give you the intro and a taste of just one exchange.
British national Moazzam Begg was a prisoner of the United States for over three years, first at Bagram and Kandahar in Afghanistan, and then at Guantanamo Bay. He was also one of the first six men designated as eligible to be tried by military commissions. He was abruptly released two years ago, and the British authorities cleared him of any involvement in terrorism related activities within hours. He lives with his family in Birmingham, England, and is currently the spokesperson for the activist website Cage Prisoners. Mr. Begg is the author of â€œEnemy Combatant: My Imprisonment at Guantanamo, Bagram and Kandaharâ€?. On March 1, 2007, I had the privilege of interviewing Mr. Begg by telephone.
And here’s one of many provocative, thought and debate provoking exchanges:
The Talking Dog: We know from your book that after a harrowing escape through Afghanistan, after you were separated from your family, you managed to make it to Pakistan where you were reunited with your family only to end up being picked up after a late-night knock on the door by members of the Pakistani Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) agency, apparently after ISI was tipped off by Britainâ€™s MI-5 intelligence service. While I assume I know the answer, let me ask anyway: have you, to this day, ever received any kind of official explanation (or official apology) from the governments of Pakistan, the United Kingdom or the United States concerning the circumstances of your detention or even why you were held in the first place?
Moazzam Begg: I should point out that CIA agents were present right from the beginning. They were dressedâ€“ very badlyâ€“ as localsâ€“ but they were there. Unbeknownst to me at the time, my family had brought a habeas corpus petition in the courts in Pakistan. The government there denied knowledge that I was there, even as they were holding me. And no, I have never been given an explanation or an apology from any of those three governments.
Read it all and make up your own mind.