With the first strikers beginning three months ago, several of the Guantanamo Bay hunger strikers are now in failing health, and while the military is trying to downplay that, and is trying to ameliorate the situation with force-feedings, experts say that the first deaths are now just a matter of time.
23 are now being force-fed, a process sparking criticism of its human rights implications, and four of the detainees are now shackled permanently to beds in the hospital wing, too weak to move.
“They won’t let us live in peace and now they won’t let us die in peace,” complained Fayiz al-Kandari, a Kuwaiti held since 2002 on allegations that he once received personal religious instruction from Osama bin Laden. He has never had a trial and has been repeatedly abused in custody.
For the first two months of the strike, prisoners were in a communal detention center, though in April troops attacked the center and forced the strikers into solitary confinement, nominally for security reasons.