Via the New York Times, I see that BBC World News has a truly incredible story on tap for tonight’s broadcast:
New to Facebook, Brandon Neely was searching the site for acquaintances in 2008 when he typed in the names of some of the detainees he had guarded during his tenure as a prison guard at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.
Mr. Neely, an Army veteran who spent six months at the prison in 2002, sent messages to one of the freed men, Shafiq Rasul, and was astonished when Mr. Rasul replied. Their exchanges sparked a face-to-face meeting, arranged by the BBC, which will be shown on Tuesday. Mr. Neely, who has served as the president of the Houston chapter of Iraq Veterans Against the War, says his time at Guantánamo now haunts him, and has granted confessional-style interviews about the abuses he says he witnessed there. In a message to Mr. Rasul, Mr. Neely apologized for his role in the imprisonment…. The BBC paid for Mr. Neely’s flight to London last month, where a camera crew filmed him meeting Mr. Rasul and a second former detainee, Ruhal Ahmed, on a Saturday afternoon.
(Click through to the Times story for a great photo.)
Neely is the same guard who gave the UC Davis’ Center for Study of Human Rights in the Americas 15,000 words of testimony about his participation in prisoner abuse at Guantanamo Bay. He caught a lot of flak for that.
There’s more over at the BBC’s site, including this:
Mr Ahmed admits they had a secret agenda for entering Afghanistan, but it wasn’t to join al-Qaeda.
“Aid work was like probably 5% of it. Our main reason was just to go and sightsee really and smoke some dope”.
These guys don’t sound like hardened jihadis. Anyway, I’ll be watching.