Tortured by the US in Afghanistan’s Bagram jail and Guantanamo Bay, British-Pakistani creator Moazzam Begg informed RT of his ordeal and the vindictive, futile US ‘Warfare on Terror’ that he says “destroyed” American troopers too.
Begg spoke with RT for the ‘Ghosts of Warfare,’ a particular venture trying on the fallout of the US invasion and 20-year occupation of Afghanistan, which formally ended on Monday.
I used to be begging to go to Guantanamo as a result of what I had seen and witnessed in Bagram was so damaging, to today I can’t sleep.
Born within the UK to Pakistani mother and father, Begg had moved to Taliban-run Afghanistan along with his household in July 2001. After the US invasion, they sought shelter in Pakistan. In February 2002, Pakistani authorities arrested him and turned him over to the US troops, “with none authorized course of in any respect.” For the following yr, he was held in Bagram, a infamous jail camp subsequent to the now-abandoned airbase.
Throughout his year-long detention in Bagram, Begg says he noticed two individuals “crushed to loss of life” by US troopers. A subsequent US army inquiry discovered that the reason for loss of life of the 2 males, recognized as Dilawar and Habibullah, was certainly murder.
“For me this place epitomized what the US was doing in Afghanistan,” he informed RT. “They had been bringing individuals to this torture website – Afghans, unusual Afghans – and abusing them outdoors the rule of regulation, after which permitting a few of them to return residence. And they’d go residence and inform individuals ‘that is what the People did’.”
In February 2003, Begg was despatched to Guantanamo Bay, a US-controlled enclave in Cuba the place a camp had been constructed for ‘enemy combatants’ captured within the so-called World Warfare on Terror.
“We had been stripped, we had been crushed, we had been spat upon, we had been humiliated, pictures of us [were] taken,” he informed RT. His captors additionally performed sounds from the following room suggesting his spouse was being tortured there, and confirmed him pictures of his youngsters. “What they needed me to do was to signal a confession that I used to be a member of Al-Qaeda, which I used to be not,” he mentioned.
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Amongst his fellow inmates had been a number of Taliban members, who he says are actually senior figures within the new Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, proclaimed after the US-backed authorities collapsed in mid-August. The Taliban takeover prompted a frantic scramble by Westerners and Afghans who labored with them to flee the nation, which formally got here to an finish on Monday when the final US army flight departed Kabul.
At one level in his Guantanamo captivity, Begg says he stopped considering of himself as a human being and began calling himself 588, the quantity he was assigned. He confirmed RT a hand-made calendar he saved and the letters from his youngsters, redacted by US censors.
My youngsters had been rising up with out me, and day-after-day with out them was a stab within the coronary heart.
Begg was launched in January 2005 and despatched to the UK. The US by no means charged him with any crime. “The Warfare on Terror was not a police operation, it was a army operation,” he informed RT.
Whereas in Guantanamo, among the American guards handled him with compassion, speaking to him, giving him chocolate, and typically letting him watch motion pictures on a smuggled DVD participant. Begg referred to as these “little acts of humanity that I’ve by no means forgotten to today.”
“I left Guantanamo not hating America due to these troopers,” he informed RT.
Begg added that some US troops have written to him afterward, saying that the struggle “destroyed” them and that they’ll’t sleep at evening. Whereas some 15,000 US troops and contractors died within the ‘Warfare on Terror,’ twice that quantity have dedicated suicide, based on the Prices of Warfare venture.
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“This can be a defeat, it’s a army defeat, nonetheless you need to have a look at it,” Begg says of the US and NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan, which left the Taliban in possession of all of the army tools and infrastructure constructed up for the US-backed regime.
He thinks “imperial hubris” received’t enable the West to come back to phrases with this final result and transfer ahead.
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