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Guantanamo: My Journey [Kindle Edition]

David Hicks
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Book Description

The personal account of David Hicks, and his five and a half years spent in the notorious prison, Guantanamo Bay.In 1999 a young man from suburban Adelaide set out on an overseas trip that would change his life forever. Initially, he was after adventure and the experience of travelling the Silk Road. But events would set him on a different path. He would be deemed a terrorist, one of George W. Bush's 'worst of the worst'. He would be incarcerated in the world's most notorious prison, Guantanamo Bay. And in that place where, according to an interrogator in Abu Ghraib, 'even dogs won't live', he was to languish for five and a half years, suffering horror, torture and abuse, while Australians were told who he was - by politicians, the media and foreign governments.Everyone had an opinion on him. But only he knows the truth. And now, for the first time, David Hicks tells his story.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1300 KB
  • Print Length: 412 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Australia (January 25, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004T6E3JA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #143,092 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A challenging life - why? October 19, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The book details the life to date of David Hicks in his own words - from a 'normal' suburban upbringing in Adelaide, through adventures on stations in the Northern Territory, trackwork in Japan, on to saving the world from injustices in Kosovo and Kashimir, then to arrest in Afghanistan, incarceration in Guantanamo and life back firstly in prison in Australia then 'freedom'.

At face value this account is a grave condemnation of United States and Australian policies responding to terrorism or possibly more accurately the threat of terrorism and a need to be seen to be doing something. The alleged level of torture and inhumane treatment handed out to Guantanamo prisoners is inexcusable and one can only hope that, to the extent that it is true, retribution follows.

However the book points to the fickle nature of life, about how relatively innocuous life choices can have profound impact, that human nature is not pure (torture), that human nature is pure (David's father and family), and more reinforcement, as if we needed it, that the first casualty in war is truth.

There is nothing in the book to suggest anything other than David was a victim of circumstance, unwise, immature, impulsive and possibly and uncharitably stupid. The choice of quotes to begin each chapter is wonderful, clever satire. But the question for me remains why as there must always be two sides to the story? A challenge for guards who were stationed at Guantanamo - lets hear your story. John Howard - lets hear your story. But before you write read this book.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Important book, if you dare to give it a try! August 31, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I'm just finishing this, read it in only a few days. As an Australian it disgusts and disturbs me deeply, and has changed my views on a number of things. Through reading this book, David has become a hero to me, even if it's justifiable to say he wasn't a very bright one back in the days when he went blundering about the Middle East and got himself caught up in world events that were to change his life forever.
One thing that maddens me as I read this book is to think how many people will probably fail to get through it because it may change their minds, causing them to reach a deeper understanding of what our government, our media, and many of the population colluded in doing, or allowing to be done, to David.
But I would counter those who wish to hold on to their old views of David with the point he opens his book with: regardless of what he may or may not have partaken in (and that has been almost entirely fabricated or misunderstood), does anything justify the years of disgraceful torture and abuse outside of the law that he was subjected to? My answer after reading this book is clear: absolutely nothing.
I see on the news today, after David spoke on ABC tv last night, that some media pundits are still calling him a terrorist, etc, and saying he 'got off'. Is it really so hard for you people to believe that someone will sign a false confession after torture? Let alone after the incredible abuse and soul-destroying inhumanity David was put through in Guantanamo? I wager these cowardly folks would've cracked and signed much worse statements much earlier on in the process than did David.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars written review March 20, 2012
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This story had an immense effect on me., it showed the suffering that can take place throughout the world when you are in the wrong place at the wrong time., It also opened our eyes to what takes place behind the "scene" so to speak.,.., The suffering David went through in the name of justice was unacceptable and we should see that this never happens again.The public are not always aware of the truth of situations and need to read and learn just what is what., !!!., well worth a read !
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
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This is a heavy read. Sometimes it got so tough I had to put it down and think about something else. David Hicks went to hell & back. He was tortured and battered into a shell of what he once was.

I am so glad he has been able to tell his side of the story. He has written this book exceptionally well, he wrote facts and referenced everything to back up his story. I went in not knowing much about his case only what I'd heard through the media at the time of his detainment.

During the book I decided to do my own research to see if his story backed up; it did. He was in the wrong place at the wrong time and he was detained with no crime being committed. Unfortunately my researched showed this is common in this prison.

If you want to know the real truth about Guantanamo Bay then read this.

Mr Hicks - I hope this book has helped you deal with the pain and helped others see what really happened to you. I wish you well for your future life.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By Burak
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
At first, reading this autobiography felt like I was reading a work of fiction; I couldn't understand how human beings could be degraded in such a manner. The events surrounding David Hicks has shown that the moral panic regarding the "war on terror" was a strategy used to keep fear alive in order to justify indefinite detention without habeas corpus, to make it look like something was being done about terrorism. The prisoners of Guantanamo were described as the most dangerous men on Earth, deemed by former Secretary of Defense as "determined killers" and the "worst of the worst". However, the majority of these men weren't even apprehended by US forces but turned over for bounty by guerrilla groups such as the Northern Alliance. Less than 1 per cent were actually charged with any crimes.

Not every man is perfect, and David has admitted to being naive during his younger years but he reiterates that he never did nor ever will support terrorism and explicitly states that he never engaged in any acts of terrorism. The military training he received while participating in the struggle for freedom in Indian controlled parts of Kashmir was standard military training that did not involve bomb-making, hijacking, targeting civilians or the preposterous type of instruction that he was purported to take part in.

Gitmo should be shut down and this was the promise made by Barack Obama on the 2nd of August 2007, yet money is continuously being spent on renovation, in excess of $500 million dollars.
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