Four Days Inside Guantanamo Review

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Another essential, damning indictment of America’s torture policy.

Adding to a catalogue of films dealing with America’s chequered track record on its policies of torture, Patricio Henriquez and Luc Côté’s film Four Days Inside Guantanamo, deals with the story of Omar Khadr, a 16-year-old Canadian citizen who in February 2003 was held and interrogated at Guantanamo Bay by the Canadian Security Intelligence Service for his alleged involvement in the killing of a US soldier in Afghanistan in July 2002.

In July 2008 the release of a seven-hour tape of Khadr’s four-day interrogation caused widespread outrage at what was perceived to have been a forced confession, in spite of evidence that pointed to the contrary; that Khadr was not involved, nor could he have been. But while their dubious methods are drawn in to question, more pertinent to the discussion is the sickening treatment Khadr receives at the hands of his own countrymen, partly because he is charged in spite of legitimate evidence that went a long way towards proving his innocence, but largely because of his young age.

Select footage of the original interrogation is intercut with talking head testimonies from Khadr’s family, activists, lawyers and former inmates to create a picture of a child unwittingly caught in an ongoing political debacle. Perhaps the most eye-opening account comes from the so-called 'King of Torture', Damien Corsetti, a former US soldier previously positioned at the notorious Bagram Theater Internment Facility where Khadr was interned before being transferred to Guantanamo.

Present for much of Khadr’s time at Bagram, in spite of his fearsome reputation Corsetti was the first to speak out against his treatment. Although he asserts that Khadr did not deserve the treatment he received, his admission of regret does little to curb the anger that footage of a child being railroaded to confess to a crime that, based on evidence largely shunned by the US, he is unlikely to have committed is likely to elicit. The fact that he remains in captivity to this day, only adds to the outrage.

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