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The Guantánamo EffectExposing the Consequences of U.S. Detention and Interrogation Practices$
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Laurel Fletcher and Eric Stover

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780520261761

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520261761.001.0001

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The Legacy of Guantánamo

(p.93) Chapter 5 Return
The Guantánamo Effect

Laurel E. Fletcher

University of California Press

Many respondents said they were elated when they learned about their impending departure from Guantánamo. In the weeks and months ahead, many former detainees had simply moved into a “post-Guantánamo phase” in a different land. Detainees are not aware of their fate as they leave Guantánamo. The U.S. government has repeatedly stated that its decision to release detainees is not an admission that they are cleared of wrongdoing, or that U.S. forces committed an error in capturing them or later detaining them in Guantánamo. Virtually all of the released Afghan detainees reported that their family's wealth had been substantially diminished by their incarceration. Many Afghan former detainees stressed they wanted the authorities to find and punish the individuals in Afghanistan who had reported them, and also wanted compensation sufficient to resume a “normal life.” For many, the “stigma of Guantánamo” hindered their ability to find meaningful employment.

Keywords:   Guantánamo, Afghan detainees, U.S. government, Afghanistan, employment

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