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Meeting tonight: Eye Witness accounts of the Guantanamo Bay prison

BGC | 06.12.2007 10:11 | Anti-racism | Repression | Terror War | Birmingham

Birmingham Guantanamo Campaign invite people to attend a truly unique opportunity to hear former US army Chaplain James Yee speak and discuss his experiences with former Guantánamo detainee Moazzam Begg. Yee will be speaking as part of his UK tour, at Carrs Lane Church Centre, Birmingham City Centre, B4 7SX at 7.00 pm.

There are few people in the world who have never heard of the notorious US military prison facility at Guantánamo Bay , Cuba . However, very few people have heard eye-witness accounts from US military personnel who served there – and even more rarely from Muslims within the US military.

Chaplain (Yusuf) James J. Yee, a former US Army Chaplain and graduate of West Point served as the Muslim Chaplain for the U.S. prison camp in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in 2003. While ministering to prisoners at Guantanamo Bay , Captain Yee advised camp commanders on detainee religious practices and objected to the cruel and degrading abuses to which the prisoners were subjected.

What sets Yee’s already unique story apart from others is how his fortune changed from being recognized twice as an outstanding officer serving the US military to being regarded as an enemy of the state. Captain Yee was arrested and imprisoned in a Naval brig for 76 days in September 2003 while being falsely accused of spying, espionage, and aiding the alleged Taliban and Al-Qaeda prisoners. He was held in solitary confinement and subjected to the same sensory deprivation techniques that were being used against the prisoners in Cuba that he had been ministering to. After months of government investigation, all criminal charges were dropped. He tendered his resignation from the U.S. Army and received an Honorable Discharge on January 7, 2005. Upon separation he was awarded with a second Army Commendation
medal for “exceptionally meritorious service.”