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Blockbuster: Former Gitmo Guard Joe Hickman Exposes Truth About “America’s Battle Lab”

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Joseph Hickman is fighting to expose the truth about Guantanamo, the 3 prisoners who died on June 9, 2006 and the coverup that ensued–detailed in his important book, Murder at Camp Delta: A Staff Sergeant’s Pursuit of the Truth About Guantanamo Bay.Hickman was the primary source for Scott Horton’s expose in Harper’s about the 2006 deaths, which were officially called “suicides” despite contradictory physical evidence.  He was also the main source for the report by Jason Leopold and Dr. Jeffrey Kaye that revealed the use of an anti-malaria drug on every arriving prisoners–a drug known to produce psychotic side effects in the doses used.

Hickman says he “drank the Kool-aid” and believed in the mission of Guantanamo until a day or two after he arrived.  He was disturbed to see prisoners in 6′ x 8′ cages in subhuman conditions.  On a patrol, he discovered the secret site outside Camp America that he dubbed “Camp No” because of numerous signs that warned him not to approach it.

He describes the increasing tensions provoked in part by hard-nosed commanders, leading to a riot and major hunger strike in April and May of 2006.  He tells of the mysterious white van that guards were instructed not to search or record its movements.

Hickman provides a detailed account of the events of June 9, when the white van took 3 prisoners in separate trips from Camp Delta in the direction of Camp No.  Those 3 men returned about 4 hours later, dead.  The coverup began immediately with Col. Bumgarner giving a direct order that guards would be hearing a different story in the media, and that they were forbidden to ever talk about what they saw.

With great assistance from a team of law students at Seton Hall, Hickman has doggedly pursued the truth.  In addition to his narrative of the inmate deaths, he explains how he discovered evidence of the high-dosage injections of meflaquone given to each arriving prisoner, which produced a psychotic state for a month or more.  And he talks about the real meaning of the tag “America’s Battle Lab”, used by high-ranking officials to describe the prison in Cuba.

This podcast is dedicated to Shaker Aamer, the last British man held at Guantanamo. Hickman reveals for the first time that, on June 9, 2006 Aamer was removed from his cell and subjected to a torture session with tactics consistent with the injuries noted in the autopsies of the dead men.  Considering that incident and many other factors, Hickman predicts–with considerable regret–that Aamer will never be released.