You Don't Like the Truth

So anyway, when I was invited this weekend to see a documentary about some prisoner down in Guantanamo Bay I wasn't all that psyched. I'd rather see X-Men or something.

Yadda, I have my opinions about the Guantanamo Bay jail. Quick sum up: I can see why it originally opened-- but I think it should have closed years ago. (Seems weak to totally turn our back on a fundamental American value (fair trial). And I don't really understand the other side of the argument.). That being said, it's not like I've emotionally cared that much about Guantanamo either. It is whatever it is. A lot of bad guys live there. Probably some innocents too. What am I supposed to do about it anyway? March on Washington? Start a letter writing campaign to my Congressman? Nice in theory but I'm a little busy developing a new powernap iphone app to take up a human right cause thank you very much. Don't get me wrong! I'm not totally lazy about my world helping btw! I have heated arguments on Facebook walls! I'll grumblewhine over beers about our President for going back on a campaign promise! I think Dick Cheney is an insecure asshole and ain't shy to tell people that too! But unfortunately most of this human rights activist is like long term commitment-style. To get anything accomplished would take actual work work. + I like my news cycles in a faster rotation in general too! Weiner in! Weiner out! Boom done! Next! (all sarcastic btw)

Anyway, this documentary is about this Canadian dude named Omar Khadr. He's Canadian-- although his Dad brought the family back and forth from Canada to Afghanistan alot. Seems like Omar's dad was likely some real-deal Al Qaeda terrorist guy. Hung out and played Mille Bornes with Osama probably. Bought each other cupcakes on their birthdays and traded porn dvds. Bottom line, (whether he knew Osama or not) when Omar's dad was filling out the application at the Kandahar DMV-- he likely wrote 'Terrorist A-hole' as his occupation. (btw the guy was killed in a shootout a few years back bye bye take care brush your hair) But like most Al Qaeda guys, Omar's Dad was probably pretty intense and umm... goal driven. Type A. And seems like Dad was raising little Omar to be a terrorist too--  as I assume most good terrorist dad's do. (Ay, if your Dad is a terrorist you ain't gonna be raised to be no friggin florist).

When Omar is 15, his Dad drops him off at some Al Qaeda crib to hang out with bad terrorist dudes and learn to make bombs and stuff. And one day, American soldiers came storming in and friggin blasted the hell out of this place bad ass style. You know, like when you hear about us taking out some “Al Qaeda stronghold” or whatever? This place was those. Our soldiers crashed in and killed all the dudes in a shootout and then for good measure they dropped a bomb on the place for extra smackdown flattening. In the raid, Omar got shot like three times in the chestal region and buried under the bomb blast. Story goes, when the Americans started poking around to look for survivors-- Omar lobbed a grenade at an American soldier and killed him. SFC Christopher James Speer.

The grenade lob was part of the original story but now it seems nobody is really onboard with that being the truth. Here's a very graphic photo of Omar when he was found laying in the rubble. (three bullets, shrapnel, blinded eye) Most people agree that it's unlikely he was up for lobbing anything at anyone after that scene. He was the sole survivor of the Al Qaeda house.

Omar was given medical treatment up on the battlefield then brought back to Bagram and he got some serious enhanced interrogation there for a while (while dealing with recovering from bullet wounds and blind eye). Apparently, Omar being in that house and us knowing who his dad was made him a big ticket item for information drive. Plus, the word was out that he killed an American. After a while, he started talking bout Osama stuff. Giving up information. Then they sent him to Guantanamo.

Anyway, that's where this film takes place. For the most part, this documentary is real footage of Omar being interrogated (by some Canadian douchebag with a jerky attitude). Four days of interrogation. It's unclear what he knows or doesn't know. He sounds confused and broken. He was 15 years old and raised in a war zone by a terrorist dad. The movie screams for us to cut the kid a break. He is likely innocent of what he is accused of (lobbing the grenade). International law says he's a child-soldier and he's supposed to be 'rehabilitated' and not treated like an adult. But his rights have basically been stripped away-- likely because his dead dad was known terrorist. And Americans and Canada are supposed to be the good guys and when it comes to practicing what we preach-- in this case-- we suck. (so does the whole international community). Nobody wants to touch this political live wire of a poor kid trapped in an undefined legal system that apparently overrides humane logic.

Three Good Things About this Movie

- It was weird and amazing seeing real interrogation footage.
- Seems like the first real attempt to put a human face on Guantanamo.
- The whole thing was pretty riveting.

Three Bad Things About this Movie

- The video and audio quality annoyingly sucked.
- The footage made available was still fairly heavily edited.
- You walk out feeling helpless and selfish for not being more active in human rights stuff.

All in all, I thank the gf's sister for inviting me along. It clarified my attitude toward Guantanamo moreso. Regardless, whether you're for or against Guantanamo-- you gotta be a pretty hard person to think that this kid deserved (is still deserving) what he got. Three bullets, tortured, blinded in one eye (the other is slowly going blind) with no rights or a decent trial seems more than enough for a 15 year old kid in the wrong place at the wrong time with a terrorist dad. Put it this way, if this was WWII and Omar was a nazi's kid forced to work at a plant building bombs and shot in a raid-- people woulda cut that kid a break years ago. And taught him about how nazis are bad.

It's the double standard with no standards that slathered slimy all over the situation down there. It's an unintelligent approach. And I think our governments dropping the ball on a fundamental international law legal, ethical, traditional and moral front-- especially when it comes to minors-- doesn't make us look tough--- I think it makes us look chicken.

Here's the trailer for the film if you wanna watch.