Members of the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker, Witness Against Torture, Pax Christi and TASSC held a noontime hour-long vigil at the White House calling for justice for the Guantanamo hunger strikers, an end to torture and indefinite detention and for the closing of GITMO. After Art gave some opening remarks (see below), Helen read the April 14 NY Times op-ed piece, “Gitmo Is Killing Me,” by hunger striker Samir Najial Hasan Moqbel. Then Col. Morris Davis, former chief military prosecutor of the GITMO Military Commissions from 2005-2007, and Tara T.C. Morrow, representing the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT), both offered compelling statements about why Guantanamo must be closed. (See T.C.’s Statement below) T.C. also offered a prayer that will be used during Torture Awareness Month in June- the prayer is on the NRCAT web site. This was followed by Amber reading the names of Yemeni prisoners who have been cleared for release–after each prisoners name was read we said together: “We Remember You.” Also Mary Harding from TASSC offered remarks as did Gizachew Emiru, the new TASSC executive director. The vigil concluded with Pat reading a prayer written by Sr. Dianna Ortiz, Jesus, Our Tortured Brother Today” and a closing circle.
April 11th, 2013 12pm @ the White House
Over 30 people gathered at Noon on Thursday in front of the White House on behalf of the Guantanamo prisoners on a hunger strike. I think we were able to make a strong and visually powerful statement to the powers that be and to numerous people who stopped to take notice of our witness. Below is the program we offered.
Links for further reading
Déjà vu: Defense Officials Downplay Growing Guantanamo Hunger Strike With Bush-Era Talking Points: Jason Leopold, Truthout
The Guantanamo Effect: Miriam Ghani
Deprived of justice, the Guantanamo detainees’ last resort is to hunger strike: Jonathan Hafetz, The Guardian
Get serious about closing Guantanamo: Tom Wilner, Washington Post