True confession: A dear friend from college came to visit me recently. We celebrated by enjoying some of our favorite ways to hang in college, including eating Ben & Jerry’s ice cream and binge watching Gilmore Girls. While she was here, I also took her on a quick tour of downtown since she never had the opportunity to really look around. During our tour, we stopped by the library. We are both avid readers, so I felt like this was an important place to show her. We went inside the library, but she wanted to look through some of the new books. I think we both added around 20 books to our ever growing books to read on that day. One of those books was Guantanamo Diary.
While reading Guantanamo Diary I was stunned. Growing up in the States, you tend to feel like we’re the good guys. I’ve always felt relatively safe and protected. And yes, I know there are many things wrong with this country, but overall it seems to be a pretty great place to live. Mohamedou Ould Slahi’s story takes away some of those warm and fuzzy feelings though. The book is written by Slahi and illustrates his time in captivity, eventually taking him to Guantanamo Bay. He is currently being held there to this day, even though he has yet to be convicted of a crime. I can’t imagine being locked up and treated so horribly for 13 years for a crime I didn’t commit. If he is guilty, that’s a different story, but so far they haven’t been able to pin anything on him.
Large sections of the book have been redacted by the government, so it can be hard to follow at times. Overall though it was a quick read, although not always so easy due to the content. I would highly encourage anyone to read this book. It is truly an eye-opening story any US citizen should read.