Thursday, June 21, 2007
The University of Iowa Press is publishing an anthology of poetry by Guantanamo detainees, says WSJ today. Prisoners, denied paper and pens until 2003, wrote poems with toothpaste on the walls, and scratched them into styrofoam cups with spoons and rocks. Link to article here, a really interesting read. Excerpts of poems, and quotes from officials on why this has taken so long:
"U.S. authorities explained why the military has been slow to declassify the poems in a June 2006 letter to one of Mr. Falkoff's colleagues. 'Poetry...presents a special risk, and DOD standards are not to approve the release of any poetry in its original form or language,' it said. The military says poetry is harder to vet than conventional letters because allusions and imagery in poetry that seem innocent can be used to convey coded messages to other militants."
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