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January 13, 2010
Military.com|by Bryant Jordan
A former GI at Guantanamo Bay has made his separate peace with two of the men he once guarded, apologizing to the former detainees in a TV broadcast Tuesday night for what they went through at the island base.
Neely has previously publicly alleged systematic abuses at Guantanamo and regret for his role there, but his meeting with former inmates -- arranged by the BBC -- was a first.
Neely was assigned to Guantanamo in 2002 and was there when the first detainees arrived. After leaving the Army he headed a chapter of Iraq Veterans Against the War. He previously alleged in an interview with the Center for the Study of Human Rights in America that he witnessed abuses at Guantanamo.
After over a month of confinement, Army Specialist Marc Hall still sits incarcerated in the Liberty County Jail near Fort Stewart, GA. The U.S. Army jailed Hall on December 11, claiming that the lyrics of his hip-hop song, “Stop-loss” amount to the “communication of a threat.” Hall, an Iraq War veteran, recorded the song last summer, expressing his anger over the Army’s Stop-Loss policy, which involuntarily extended his contract for a second Iraq deployment. We believe that Spc. Hall’s right to free speech is being violated with the Army’s actions.
Shafiq Rasul, the other former inmate, said Neely's comments had made things easier for himself and Ahmed, because they backed up what they had been saying for years of their treatment.
The two British Muslim men were held more than two years before being repatriated to England. They were picked up in Afghanistan, where they say they were merely delivering humanitarian aid.