Don’t Forget Us Here: Lost and Found at Guantanamo

Mansoor Adayfi with Antonio Aiello. Hachette, $30 (384p) ISBN 978-0-306-92386-9
Adayfi debuts with a searing look at the brutal conditions he endured during his 14 years at the U.S. military’s Guantanamo Bay detention camp. In 2001, during a stint in Afghanistan working as a research assistant, he was abducted by warlords. Initially, his captors wanted a ransom payment, but instead they sold him to American forces, presenting the 18-year-old Yemeni captive as a recruiter for al-Qaeda. Following months in a CIA black site in Afghanistan, Adayfi was transferred to Guantanamo, where, he writes, interrogators tortured him and were unwilling to accept his claims that he wasn’t a terrorist. The savagery of his treatment—including one instance in which he was force-fed through his nose after organizing a hunger strike (“My nose bled and bled, but the nurse wouldn’t stop”)—is harrowing, and the revelation that no charges were brought against him at the end of his long captivity is deeply disturbing. Even still, Adayfi manages to focus on the beauty and hope that came from his darkest times, like learning English and computer skills and advocating for other inmates, which made “the harsh cold of solitary confinement go away, if only for a little while.” This poignant testament strikes a devastating chord. Agent: Julia Eagleton, the Gernert Company. (Aug.)
Reviewed on : 05/05/2021
Release date: 08/17/2021
Genre: Nonfiction
Compact Disc - 978-1-5491-5943-5
Show other formats
Discover what to read next