Guantanamo's Child: The Untold Story Of Omar Khadr

by Michelle Shephard

John Wiley & Sons | April 16, 2010 | Hardcover

Guantanamo's Child: The Untold Story Of Omar Khadr is rated 5 out of 5 by 3.
A prize-winning journalist tells the troubling story of Canadian Omar Khadr, who has spent a quarter of his life growing up in Guantanamo Bay.

Khadr was captured in Afghanistan in July 2002 at the age of 15. Accused by the Pentagon of throwing a grenade that killed U.S. soldier Sgt. First Class Christopher Speer, Khadr faces charges of conspiracy and murder. His case is set to be the first war crimes trial since World War II.

In Guantanamo''s Child, veteran reporter Michelle Shephard traces Khadr''s roots in Canada, Pakistan and Afghanistan, growing up surrounded by al Qaeda''s elite. She examines how his despised family, dubbed "Canada''s First Family of Terrorism," has overshadowed his trial and left him alone behind bars for more than five years. Khadr''s story goes to the heart of what''s wrong with the U.S. administration''s post-9/11 policies and why Canada is guilty by association. His story explains how the lack of due process can create victims and lead to retribution, and instead of justice, fuel terrorism.

Michelle Shephard is a national security reporter for the Toronto Star and the recipient of Canada''s top two journalism awards.

"You will be shocked, saddened and in the end angry at the story this page turner of a book exposes. I read it straight through and Omar Khadr''s plight is one you cannot forget."
Michael Ratner, New York, President of the Center for Constitutional Rights

"Michelle Shephard''s richly reported, well written account of Omar Khadr''s trajectory from the battlefields of Afghanistan to the cells of Guantanamo is a microcosm of the larger "war on terror" in which the teenaged Khadr either played the role of a jihadist murderer or tragic pawn or, perhaps, both roles."
Peter Bergen, author of Holy war, Inc. and The Osama bin Laden I know

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 320 pages, 9.13 × 6.36 × 0.96 in

Published: April 16, 2010

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0470841176

ISBN - 13: 9780470841174

Found in: History

save 93%

  • Out of stock online

$2.00  ea

Online Price

$29.95 List Price

This item is eligible for FREE SHIPPING on orders over $25.
See details

Easy, FREE returns. See details

Item can only be shipped in Canada

Downloads instantly to your kobo or other ereading device. See details

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from A book that triggers compassion Michelle Shephard tells the story of a young man few Canadians feel any sympathy for. However, only a cold-hearted person would not be affected by the tragedy of this young boy, who lost his childhood to his late father's dream of a global jihad. Shephard takes on a huge challenge and accomplishes her goal admirably. As I put down the book, I could not help but feel deep compassion for Omar Khadr. The book has left me feeling that I should do something to help him. This despite the fact I have a lifelong distaste for jihadism and nothing but contempt for the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. Omar Khadr deserves a second chance in life, and if he ever wins freedom, he will owe it partly to Michelle Shephard's fine book. For making me look at the young man as a fellow human being, "Thank you Michelle Shephard."
Date published: 2008-05-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely Great! A great read!
Date published: 2008-04-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Canada's Problem Child - great read Guantanamo’s child is about to become Canada’s child. The six year old case against Omar Khadr is imploding in slow time as each new revelation exposes false information, accusations of torture and tampering. It is a legal process so appalling that the US Supreme Court, dominated by Republican appointees, declared the entire “Military Commissions” process unconstitutional in 2006. Whatever the outcome, it is becoming clearer by the day that Omar Khadr will be back in Canada in less than a year. How Canada deals with this problem when he arrives is not clear. The newly launched book by reporter Michelle Sheppard, Guantanamo’s Child, gives the reader a direct insight into Omar Khadr and how he became the world’s most (in)famous child soldier. Contrary to the views of many in government agencies, the interest of Canadians is best served when national security matters are intelligently discussed in the public eye. It is ironic that in Canada, it is reporters such as Stewart Bell, Kim Bolan, Nazim Baksh, and Ian MacLeod who have the most knowledge and long term experience in critical matters such as terrorism and extremism. This work by Michelle Sheppard adds further to that body of knowledge. The book reveals Omar Khadr’s life voyage as extraordinary by any standard. From Toronto to the means streets of Jalalabad Afghanistan, and then to primitive mountain shelters in Pakistani Waziristan, Omar Khadr travelled more in his first 15 years than most people do in a lifetime. The question must arise. Is Omar Khadr a dedicated and dangerous jihadist who fought US Special Forces soldiers, or is he a 15 child whose life was laid out for him when he was born? One thing is clear. His father, Ahmed Said Khadr, wanted to build a puritanical Islamic-inspired state in Afghanistan, and he was determined to shape his sons to be a part of that plan. Jim Gould, a DFAIT official working in an intelligence capacity, met with Omar Khadr in the prison at Guantanamo Bay. He describes Khadr by saying that “All those persons who have been in a position of authority over him have abused him and his trust for their own purposes.” To truly understand Omar Khadr’s current situation, it is necessary to look into the murky world of terrorism, intelligence, high politics and law. What is really behind the trials is the laundering of evidence gained by torture, the structures of the intelligence community, and the policies of the Bush Administration. The so-called “trials” will not have any rules that resemble a judicial proceeding. Much like the Soviet show trials of the 1930s, confessions will be allowed, no matter how they were obtained. The presumption of innocence has been inverted to a presumption of guilt, and the rules of the Commissions are “flexible” to allow the presiding authorities to admit or exclude whatever evidence they want – including third party hearsay. However, some of the lawyers who have worked for Omar Khadr see the case as a legal one in which the forces of law need to be marshaled. In other words, they believe that they are engaged in a legal struggle. As the book makes clear, this is a political struggle, with the experience gained in past criminal trials of only modest value. To be a lawyer in these case is to fight in the “the wilderness of mirrors” that is world of intelligence. Ultimately, it appears as this case will be determined by those lawyers who can best understand and then undermine the complex political and intelligence systems involved. It is an unwitting Omar Khadr who has become a global symbol of all that is wrong with the so-called “war on terrorism.” The attacks on the World Trade Centres killed almost 3,000 innocent victims. However, a series of incompetent policy decisions means that the USA has lost the moral high ground it could have controlled and exploited. As one of the Guantanamo staff put it, we have “lost the high ground, we cashed in our principles for a piece of information – and it did not work.” Omar Khadr could have been a major victory in the ongoing struggle against extremism and terrorism. As a child soldier, captured at the age of 15, he would have been an excellent case for rehabilitation and return. Like his brother Abdurahman, there is no indication that Omar really wants to continue in the role of his father. Now, Omar Khadr and the entire Guantanamo Bay process have become a glowing symbol for further radicalization which is being exploited by Al Qaeda and its inspired followers around the world. The reviewer is Tom Quiggin. He is a Canadian court appointed expert on jihadism and is currently assisting in the training of the defence lawyers for the Guantanamo Bay Military Commissions.
Date published: 2008-04-01

– More About This Product –

Guantanamo's Child: The Untold Story Of Omar Khadr

by Michelle Shephard

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 320 pages, 9.13 × 6.36 × 0.96 in

Published: April 16, 2010

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0470841176

ISBN - 13: 9780470841174

About the Book

A prizewinning journalist looks at one of Al-Qaeda's newest and deadliest recruits

Involved in a firefight in Afghanistan that killed a decorated U.S. medic, Al-Qaeda-trained Omar Khadr now faces charges of conspiracy and murder. Sent to Guantanamo at only 15, Khadr belongs to "Canada's first family of terror," a dubious distinction that has made him a folk hero to radicalized young Muslims the world over, while fueling hatred for both the U.S. and Canada. In Guantanamo's Child, veteran reporter Michelle Shephard examines the frightening phenomenon of home-grown terrorists, their process of radicalization, and the significance of commonly held notions of law, such as due process and protection of individual rights, in cases such as Khadr's.

Michelle Shephard (Toronto, ON, Canada) is a national security reporter for the Toronto Star and the recipient of two of Canada's top journalism awards.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments.

Introduction.

Author''s Note.

Chapter One. "Shoot Me".

Chapter Two. Al Kanadi.

Chapter Three. the Khadr Effect.

Chapter Four. Flight or Fight.

Chapter Five. "Don''t Forgat Me".

Chapter Six. The Elephant and the Ant.

Chapter Seven. "We Are an al Qaeda Family".

Chapter Eight. "It''s Destroying Us Slowly".

Chapter Nine. "There Are No Rules".

Chapter Ten. Law and Disorder.

Afterword.

Appendix: List of Principle Characters.

Notes.

Select Bibliography.

Index.

From the Publisher

A prize-winning journalist tells the troubling story of Canadian Omar Khadr, who has spent a quarter of his life growing up in Guantanamo Bay.

Khadr was captured in Afghanistan in July 2002 at the age of 15. Accused by the Pentagon of throwing a grenade that killed U.S. soldier Sgt. First Class Christopher Speer, Khadr faces charges of conspiracy and murder. His case is set to be the first war crimes trial since World War II.

In Guantanamo''s Child, veteran reporter Michelle Shephard traces Khadr''s roots in Canada, Pakistan and Afghanistan, growing up surrounded by al Qaeda''s elite. She examines how his despised family, dubbed "Canada''s First Family of Terrorism," has overshadowed his trial and left him alone behind bars for more than five years. Khadr''s story goes to the heart of what''s wrong with the U.S. administration''s post-9/11 policies and why Canada is guilty by association. His story explains how the lack of due process can create victims and lead to retribution, and instead of justice, fuel terrorism.

Michelle Shephard is a national security reporter for the Toronto Star and the recipient of Canada''s top two journalism awards.

"You will be shocked, saddened and in the end angry at the story this page turner of a book exposes. I read it straight through and Omar Khadr''s plight is one you cannot forget."
—Michael Ratner, New York, President of the Center for Constitutional Rights

"Michelle Shephard''s richly reported, well written account of Omar Khadr''s trajectory from the battlefields of Afghanistan to the cells of Guantanamo is a microcosm of the larger "war on terror" in which the teenaged Khadr either played the role of a jihadist murderer or tragic pawn or, perhaps, both roles."
—Peter Bergen, author of Holy war, Inc. and The Osama bin Laden I know

From the Jacket

An excerpt from Guantanamo''s Child:

Omar had been through the drill many times before. The guards would arrive early in the morning, shackle him, and cover his eyes and ears for the drive to camp Iguana, where he would wait for his visitors while chained by the ankle to a hook bolted to the floor. that morning, he remained there for hours until Edney and Whitling were led in. the Edmonton lawyers had been fighting for Omar for four years but had never met him. They could hardly believe they were standing in front of him.

Omar smiled. His family had written to him about h is Canadian lawyers and had sent a picture they had taken during one visit, so Omar know the men before him were Dennis and Nate. But his family hadn''t prepared him for Edney''s accent. Omar had been exposed to many languages inside Guantanamo and had even picked up a Saudi accent, but he had never heard anything quite like Edney''s Scottish brogue. Omar began laughing as Edney talked, cutting through the tension.

For two days, Edney and Whitling tried to get to know Omar. Together they ate the picnic lunch of olives, cheese, bread and candies that they had brought, Edney tussling with Omar to make sure he received his fair share of the sweets. Edney talked almost as much as he listened. He told stories about Omar''s family and told him about Kareem and Abdullah. "Your sister Zaynab is always trying to bully me," Edney said and flashed a smile. Edney told Omar about his sons and showed him pictures. "You''ve got to have hope, Omar," Edney told him just before he left. "Without hope, we all die."

"I wont'' give up on you," Omar replied, "but you''ll give up on me. Everyone does."

Omar hugged them and asked Edney if he could keep a photo of Edney''s son Duncan in his hockey uniform. then he gave whitling a paper origami bird and asked him to give it to his wife as a present.

"You will be shocked, saddened and in the end made angry at the story this page-turner of a book exposes. I read it straight through, and Omar Khadr''s plight is one you cannot forget."
—Michael Ratner, President, Center for Constitutional Rights, New York

About the Author

Michelle Shephard is National Security reporter for The Toronto Star and has covered the story of Oamr Khadr since he was captured in July 2002. During her ten years in journalism she has won Canada''s top two newspaper awards: the National Newspaper Award for investigations and the Governor General''s Michener Award for public service journalism.