Guantánamo Prisoners Used To Sing Akon's 'Locked Up' While Being Force Fed

prison akon

The hunger strike among prisoners, and consequent force-feeding of them, at Guantánamo Bay detention facility has grown to involve 104 of the 166 prisoners as of Saturday, Ben Fox of The Associated Press reports.

Ahmed Zuhair, a former sheep merchant who was never charged with any crime during seven years at Guantanamo, spoke the the AP and gave his account of what it’s like to be force fed by the U.S. military.

The 47-year-old, who was sent home to Saudi Arabia in 2009, shares the distinction of staging the longest hunger strikes at the prison after maintained the protests for four years. 

Court papers show that Zuhair fellow prisoners “smeared themselves with their own feces for five days to keep guards at bay and protest rough treatment,” Fox notes.

From the AP:

Officials refer to the process by the medical term “enteral feeding” rather than “force feeding.” It involves restraining men with straps that resemble aeroplane seatbelts to a specially designed chair that looks like a piece of exercise equipment. Zuhair called it the “torture chair” and said he was left tied down for hours at a time, ostensibly so the liquid nutrient drink Ensure could be digested.

In a court-ordered April 2009 report a forensic psychiatrist named Dr. Emily Keram interviewed guards who mentioned this detail.

From the AP (emphasis ours):

Keram also found evidence that Zuhair wasn’t always confrontational. Guards told her that Zuhair often served as an intermediary between troops and prisoners.

Guards told her that prisoners would sometimes sing as they were being force-fed, a favourite was hip hop artist Akon’s “Locked Up.”

We can see why they chose this song. Check out the lyrics:

Locked up, they won’t let me out
And I had a long day in court shit stressed me out
Won’t gimme the bail they can’t get me out …

I don’t wana live here, the walls is grey the clothes is orange
The phones is broke, the food is garbage …

They won’t let me out, they won’t let me out, (im locked up)
They won’t let me out no, they wont let me out, (im locked up)
They won’t let me out, they won’t let me out, (im locked up)
They won’t let me out no, they won’t let me out

Check out Fox’s report >

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