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Sunday, 29 March 2009

You can't go home (to Yemen) again

What will Obama do with Guantanamo's single largest group of detainees? One hundred Yemenis wait to go home -- but those who've already returned to Yemen didn't find a warm welcome.

To read the just-released Human Rights Watch report, "No Direction Home: Returns from Guantanamo to Yemen," click here. To hear former Guantanamo detainees describe their difficulties after returning to Yemen, along with commentary from Human Rights Watch researcher Letta Tayler, click here.

Omar Fawza can't find a wife. The 20-something Yemeni reveals his bachelor status with a sigh that suggests it's the most painful experience of his life -- worse even than the five years he spent in U.S. captivity at Guantánamo Bay and in Afghanistan, where he says he was treated "like a dog."

For Fawza, thwarted marital bliss has become the symbol of his rotten existence since U.S. forces scooped him up in Pakistan shortly after the Sept. 11 attacks. Fawza, who had gone to Afghanistan to fight with the Taliban against their domestic rivals long before 9/11 but never saw combat, was locked up by the Americans as part of "the worst of the worst," and then abruptly sent back to Yemen in 2006. Like most of the 14 Yemenis shipped home from Guantánamo so far, he's been stigmatized in his own country as a terrorist ever since, though he was never charged with a crime. More

Afghan war planned before 9/11.

Iraq war planned before 9/11.

Exposing the identity of the criminals responsible for 9/11