Wednesday, August 30, 2006

The Man Who Has Been to America:

Why should Geneva Convention protections be applied to Guantanamo detainees? One innocent man's journey through the legal black hole of the War on Terror—four prisons, three countries, two years—may be the best argument yet.

McKenzie Funk
July 12 , 2006

IN THE ENEMY COMBATANT’S HOUSE, in the room where he eats and prays and sleeps, a single window casts its light on a single adornment: an enormous Soviet-era map of the world. It is the first thing I notice after I arrive unannounced one cold fall morning and am ushered into the warmth of the room. We sit on the floor below an elongated Africa, a tiny America, and a colossal, pink-shaded U.S.S.R. A brother with a prosthetic leg appears and lays out a brightly patterned sheet still covered with past meals’ bread crumbs. Non ham non, nonreza ham non, the Tajik proverb goes: “Bread is bread, crumbs are also bread.”

The enemy combatant serves the tea. He pours it before it’s properly steeped, dumps the watery cups back into the pot, and repeats. If he’s unhappy to see an American after Guantanamo, he doesn’t show it. He smiles, and two wrinkles appear on his left cheek. I ask him his full name. Muhibullo Abdulkarim Umarov, he tells me. He says he is 24 years old. He asks, “You want to know the story of my capture, yes?” To continue reading click HERE.

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