The Road to Guantanamo

This drama-documentary was shown last March on Channel 4, and I remember being so affected by it that I couldn’t stop thinking about it and found it difficult to sleep for a few nights. Guantanamo

It tells the story of 4 young British Muslims from Tipton, Birmingham who fly to Pakistan for the wedding of one of them but instead, end up in US custody at Guantanamo for over two years, until they are finally released without charge or apology. Only 3 returned back home. They became known as the ‘Tipton Three’.

It wasn’t that I had never heard of Guantanamo Bay or was oblivious to the things that were going on in the world, because this was the kind of stuff I was exposed to when I became interested in Islam back at college, but in the months before I watched that documentary, I had kinda cut myself off from the news, politics etc because I needed to focus on other important things. So when I watched the documentary, it just brought it all back home to me.

I managed to get hold of a dvd copy of the film over the weekend and I watched again. If you haven’t seen it, do watch it and share it with others.

Here is the official website and you can watch the film on google.

***Former detainee Moazzam Begg is amongst demonstrators outside US embassy in London calling for the closure of the Guantanamo Bay military prison

Moazzam Begg wrote about his ordeal; his imprisonment at Guantanamo, Bagram and Kandahar…

“Under the hood I felt I couldn’t breathe properly. . . . Flashing lights—obviously from soldiers’ cameras taking trophy pictures—came and went in front of me, despite the hood’s darkness. From beside me a voice said in Arabic, “Shall we pray, brother?” A guard came and screamed in my ear, “Shut up, motherf****r, if you speak again I’ll kill you.”

Enemy Combatant

May Allah keep our brothers and sisters strong.

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~ by usma on 10, January, 2007.

12 Responses to “The Road to Guantanamo”

  1. […] For those of you unable to attend this rally, please encourage others to take action against Guantanamo Bay. Encourage others to watch The Road to Guantanamo, the story of 4 young British Muslims from Tipton, Birmingham who fly to Pakistan for the wedding of one of them but instead, end up in US custody at Guantanamo for over two years, until they are finally released without charge or apology (source: Just Another Blog). […]

  2. sorry the new URL for that previous post is:

    http://www.hahmed.com/blog/2007/01/10/guantanamo/

  3. Salam. Subhanallah it really had an efefct on me too. the worst part was not knowing what happened to one of the brothers that was missing.i cant imagine what his parents must be going through.

  4. I think what the film road to guantanamo showed was the sheer normalcy in those boys..they were such yorkshire lads. i think most people that watched it knew at least somebody who were just like the ‘tipton 3’, not knowing much about world politics, having zeal and enthusiasm for Islam.
    It was an excellent piece of drama, one to be comended!

  5. that’s what really got to me- they were just like us; young kids our age, going over for a friends wedding..you see brothers like that at college/uni,then they have 3 years of their life hijacked like that.
    It’s all the qadr of Allah and not one of them said they regretted anything, it made them stronger.

    Raz, do you remember we were outside Paddington police station the day after they were brought there,sabina was there too, we were looking for some other place, unaware as to what had happened the day before.

    You must remember the brother who said salam to me outside the station then started swearing at me when I said “sorry I don’t have any change”-btw, thanks for walking off and deserting me!

  6. yeah they went in as 22 or 21 or 20 year olds and came back as 25 year olds.
    For the rest of this who did not experience this grueling experience, I feel lucky to be not in their shoes and whatever problems I had for the past four years were miniscule compared to what they went through.

  7. err…will i be in trouble if i say i dont remember?? my memory doesn’t serve me at the best of times..its got a habit of that now.
    yeah thats the most important thing..the fact that none of then have said they regretted.
    i dont know if this is my historian tendancies here but wont it be weird whan you think about it…in the 30-50 years time we’ll look back at all this, and think to ourselves, and maybe even narrate to our grandchildren??!! why not? that it was US that were in the thick of it. From T.V programmes, blogs, newspaers the lot of it, it was our identity at issue here, it was our problem and it will be our solution, whichever, if ever we get there.
    ps. didnt one of them have this really cool skill of rapping..i think he’s got a msn spaces somewhere..and its put up on there, perhaps you could post that up?

  8. ooh i just noticed enemy combatant..has anybody read that yet?
    i havent read all of it but it was a really weird day when i started to read it.
    Iy was summer and i used to finish work at 3..so what inused to do is finish a book i was reading in Russel Sq or somthing, just appreciate my surroundinds..this is when i discovred my dreams of being a farmer..lol! *neeeeeeewhoooo*
    it was on those days i thought Id go up oxford street.It was one of those swealtering days, where your thinking, maan i cant be bothered any more, so i went into Borders..it had really powerful AC 😀
    Id heard about the book enemey combatant, so it thought id flick through the pages. Expecting to see pix of men in orange boiler suits, gasmasks, protesters, i saw a pix of moazzem and his family. very sweet family. and then i flicked throgh some more and came across old pictures of him when he was a child. i thought id read some pages. the guy was talented!! i think he majors in computer sciences but he’s ability to capture me..in the midst of the heat and hustle and bustle of oxford street meant that i sat through two chapters, flicking pages away. it was a very lovely read. not overly riduculing, or sorry, but saying it how it is. it almost bought me to tears in that very short space of time. I shoudl mention also his ability to write beautiful poems…the sheer contrast of this gentle and emotional man labled as a threat to society was the very essence of the book that took me in.

  9. “i dont know if this is my historian tendancies here but wont it be weird whan you think about it…in the 30-50 years time we’ll look back at all this, and think to ourselves, and maybe even narrate to our grandchildren??!!”

    If we live to have grandchildren : ) But I get you, my grandad used to tell me about the Indo-Pak partition and its just the way it is; future generations will come to study past events and its so weird just to think that “the war on terror” will be something that will be written about and firmly placed in the books of history (albeit a biased and edited version-oops, I said the “B” word!)

    Yeaaah, I liked his rapping and beat boxing. where abouts on msn?

    Enemy Combatant is on my book list (along with all the others)-Im looking forward to reading that as well as this one-should be interesting eh? 😉
    And don’t worry razmatazz, we’ll get you your strip of land to farm and you can sit there with your animals and read your history books 🙂

  10. […] I plan on going to this-The “Tipton Three” will be there and Moezzem Beg too(awaiting confirmation I believe). A little problemo..I have the […]

  11. judgement on them for going ‘in search’ of a bride. if muslims are so religous then tell me how in Gods eyes can they marry a stranger and recite words they don’t mean?

  12. “judgement on them for going ‘in search’ of a bride. if muslims are so religous then tell me how in Gods eyes can they marry a stranger and recite words they don’t mean?”

    You just stated a common miconception people have of Islam(incl some muslims)

    1) first of all, its important to distingyuish between what Islam says and what Muslims do. Islam allows both the man and woman,(in fact, it is encouraged) to meet, look and talk to a potential spouse. *Some* Muslims are affected by cultural practices in which none of the above allowed.

    2) what words are you talking about?

    3) are you saying the the brothers who were detained at Guantanamo asked for what happened to them?

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