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Following the terrorist attacks of 9/11, the United States imprisoned more than seven hundred and fifty men at its naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. These men, ranging from teenage boys to men in their eighties from over forty different countries, were detained for years without charges, trial, and a fair hearing. Without any legal status or protection, they were truly outside the law: imprisoned in secret, denied communication with their families, and subjected to extreme isolation, physical and mental abuse, and, in some instances, torture.
These are the detainees' stories, told by their lawyers because the prisoners themselves were silenced. It took habeas counsel more than two years - and a ruling from the United States Supreme Court - to finally gain the right to visit and talk to their clients at Guantanamo. Even then, lawyers were forced to operate under severe restrictions designed to inhibit communication and envelop the prison in secrecy. In time, however, lawyers were able to meet with their clients and bring the truth about Guantanamo to the world.
The Guantanamo Lawyers contains over one hundred personal narratives from attorneys who have represented detainees held at Guantanamo as well as at other lawless detention centers such as Afghanistan's Bagram Air Base. Mark Denbeaux and Jonathan Hafetz - themselves lawyers for detainees - collected stories that cover virtually every facet of Guantanamo, and the litigation it sparked.
Together, these moving, powerful voices create a historical record of Guantanamo's legal, human, and moral failings, and provide a window into America's catastrophic effort to create a prison beyond the law.