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In 2001, four Pakistani Britons, Ruhal Ahmed, Asif Iqbal and Shafiq Rasul and another friend, Monir, travel to Pakistan for a wedding and in a urge of idealism, decide to see the situation of war torn Afganistan which is being bombed by the American forces in retaliation for the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Once there, with the loss of Monir in the wartime chaos, they are captured by Northern Alliance fighters. They are then handed them over the American forces who transport them to the prison camps at the Guantanamo Bay base in Cuba. What follows is three years of relentless imprisonment, interrogations and torture to make them submit to blatantly wrong confessions to being terrorists. In the midst of this abuse, the three struggle to keep their spirits up in that face of this grave injustice. Written by
Kenneth Chisholm (firstname.lastname@example.org)
When one of the "detainees" is first brought into the interrogation tent, a guard accidentally lifts the man's shirt, revealing the wire of a remote microphone. See more »
[rapping to an American guard]
My name's Shafiq Rasul, and I'm from Tipton, I tell them I ain't Taliban, but they don't wanna listen. You won't believe I just came out here, for my mate's wedding, do you? I never thought my ass, would be heading for Cuba.
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Road is the story of three British citizens of Pakistani descent who through a series of accidents and bad coincidences wind up in Taliban-held Afghanistan during the British-American bombing and occupation in the post-911 months of 2001.
Ruhel Ahmed, Asif Iqbal and Shafiq Rasul are 20-year-old devout Moslem men living in England who travel with their friend Monir to Pakistan to attend Asif's wedding. After spending a few days of shopping and sightseeing, the friends attend a mosque with Asif's Pakistani cousin, Zahid.
The Imam inspires them to volunteer to travel to Afghanistan and provide humanitarian aid presumably to the refugees being created in the civil strife with the Taliban on the eve of the invasion The friends decide to go to Kabul "to help." The story finds them set loose in the chaos of the invasion after the bus driver hits and kills a man, then leaves them.
They try to arrange for a ride back to Pakistan, instead the ride takes them north to a Taliban stronghold. The stronghold falls and they are taken prisoner; they lose track of Monir, and he is not heard from again. They herd the three onto trucks, and the nightmare truly begins: Asif and Shafiq are sent to Guantanamo, Zahid is imprisoned in Pakistan.
It's a hard movie to watch with the reenactments of the cruel treatment born by the "boys." What's always puzzled me is how did we know these detainees were Al Qaeda enablers, instrumental in the attacks of 911, sworn enemies of every good and decent American thing? The movie provides a news clip of King George saying, "The only thing I know for certain is that these are some bad people." Well we've seen the certainty of The Decider before, e.g. weapons of mass destruction and Saddam's relationship with Al Qaeda. According to MSNBC sources, as reported in Wikipedia: As of November 2006, out of 775 detainees brought to Guantanamo, approximately 340 have been released, leaving 435 detainees. Of those 435, 110 are labeled as ready for release. Of the other 325, only "more than 70" will face trial, the Pentagon says. That leaves about 250 who may be held indefinitely....
For my complete review of this movie and for other movie and book reviews, please visit my site TheCoffeeCoaster.com.
Brian Wright Copyright 2007
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