Guantanamo: The Voice of a Guard – A Special Group 48 Virtual Event

Thursday, January 13, 2022 7:30 PM

For nearly 20 years, Amnesty International has campaigned against the ongoing human rights violations at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility and the release of those detained. Thirty-nine prisoners remain detained. Amnesty International’s campaign to close this secret detention facility continues.

Join us to hear the story of Steve Wood, who was a guard at Guantanamo Bay as a member
of the Oregon National Guard. He was told the detainees were the worst of the worst and responsible for the 9/11 terrorist attack. He witnessed torture techniques and inhumane conditions. Eventually, he guarded Mohamedou Ould Slahi, a Mauritanian man held for fourteen years without charge, and whose story was the subject of the film “The Mauritanian” starring Jodie Foster.

Today, Steve Wood works towards the end of closing Guantanamo. He has reconnected with Mohamedou, and they treat each other as brothers. We are pleased to hear his story in his own words.

To join our virtual event, contact us for the event link.

ILLUSTRATING IMPRISONMENT: Sarah Mirk Presents “Guantanamo Voices”

Portland area author/journalist Sarah Mirk compiled an amazing graphic non-fiction book, Guantanamo Voices: True Accounts from the World’s Most Infamous Prison, exposing the human rights abuses at Guantanamo Bay prison, which the US opened in Cuba exactly four months after 9/11. Mirk will speak at a livestream event followed by an audience Q&A. The event will be hosted by local media personality Theresa Mitchell.

Sarah Mirk Presents “Guantanamo Voices”

Tuesday, January 12, 2021, 7:00 PM
Streaming live on YouTube

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Guantanamo 19th anniversary rally and march

No More Excuses: Shut Down Guantanamo!
Friday, January 8, 2021, 4:30-6:00 PM
(socially distanced) Rally & March
Pioneer Courthouse Square, SW Yamhill and Broadway, downtown Portland

January 11, 2021 marks 19 years since the opening of the US prison camp in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The prison now holds just 40 people (from a height of nearly 800 at one point). Although it stands as a symbol of the United States’ lack of respect for due process, human rights and the rule of law, it has still remained active. In 2018, President Trump reversed President Obama’s policy directive that called to shut down Guantanamo; President-elect Biden has not prioritized closing the camp despite calling it “an advertisement for creating terror.” Local Portland groups join worldwide voices calling to Close Guantanamo Now!

This event is coordinated by Peace and Justice Works Iraq Affinity Group and cosponsored by Amnesty International Group 48. For more information, contact Peace and Justice Works at 503-236-3065 or

Guantanamo 14th anniversary event

Shut Down Guantanamo – Stop Inspiring Terrorism
Visibility Action
Monday, January 11, 2016
3:30-5:30 PM
SE Hawthorne & Grand (East end of Hawthorne Bridge)

Join Portlanders calling to close down the prison camp in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, exactly 14 years to the day after it opened, with a visibility action at the east end of the Hawthorne bridge, SE Hawthorne and Grand on Monday, January 11 from 3:30 to 5:30 PM. Peace and Justice Works Iraq Affinity Group will use its 12-foot-tall “tower of peace” to call attention to the notorious prison where over 100 people still languish in a facility that undermines the supposed rule of law that separates our country from chaos.


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Global Day of Action To Close Guantanamo and End Indefinite Detention on May 23

May 16, 2014

Local Media Contact: Megan Harrington, Amnesty International USA Group 48, 206-398-9838

Amnesty International USA Group 48, Veterans For Peace, and hold ‘May 23 Global Day of Action To Close Guantanamo and End Indefinite Detention’
Exactly one year after President Obama recommitted to close down the detention facility, multiple local social justice groups will protest the lack of progress on detainee transfers

PORTLAND, OR—On Friday, May 23, one year after President Obama once again promised to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay in a speech at National Defense University, local chapters of Amnesty International (USA Group 48), Veterans For Peace, and will host a rally at noon at Director Park in downtown Portland.

This rally is part of a Global Day of Action organized by Witness Against Torture, September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows, the National Religious Campaign Against Torture, Amnesty International and other groups.

Groups are calling on President Obama to transfer the dozens of cleared detainees and make good on his commitment to close the detention facility this year.

The President’s pledge last May came amidst a mass hunger strike by men protesting their indefinite detention. Since then only a handful of detainees have been transferred despite Congress’ decision to ease restrictions on such transfers.

There are no excuses for further delay. The President has the authority to transfer cleared detainees and it’s time to use it. Groups are also calling on President Obama to release the full Senate report on CIA torture and ensure that the CIA does not have the final say about what information is made public.

“The existence and continued use of the ‘gulag’ of Guantanamo is grotesque,” said S. Brian Willson, member of the Portland chapter of Veterans for Peace. “The fact that Americans tolerate the long imprisonment and torture of other human beings without due process means we need to take a serious look at the level of apathy in our culture.”

Activists will wear orange jumpsuits representing detainees at colorful demonstrations in over 25 cities, including Portland.

WHERE: Director Park, 815 SW Park Ave, downtown Portland, OR.
• Events will also be held in Washington, DC, New York City, Los Angeles, Boston, Chicago, London and over 20 other cities. For a full list & contact info, visit:

WHEN: 12pm, Friday, May 23, 2014

WHO: Members of the public and activists from multiple local social justice groups

WHAT: Global Day of Action Against Guantanamo

To participate, the public can attend a rally, sign a petition, call elected officials and tweet President Obama.