Guantanamo Voices

Chris Held at Heathrow for Seven Hours
January 9, 2009, 6:11 pm
Filed under: travel troubles | Tags: ,

Last night, former Guantanamo Bay guard Chris Arendt got a small taste of life as a detainee — he was held for seven hours in Heathrow trying to come into the country.

The problem started at the passport check desk, when he furnished proper papers but couldn’t provide a home address since he has been traveling since August interviewing homeless veterans and living rather homeless himself. The guard grew more suspicious when Chris also could not name an employer – he works as an unpaid organizer for Iraq Veterans Against War. “What do you eat?” asked the guard. “Sometimes I eat bread out of dumpsters,” joked Chris and that was the kicker.

In a small room at Heathrow, Chris was quizzed about his purpose here, all about the Cageprisoners tour and some questions about whom he knew in the UK. Chris has a way of talking himself into trouble and it took seven hours and the intervention of a House of Lords member before Chris was released. Luckily, he made it out in time to get some sleep before today’s press conference.

“He is the only ex Guantanamo guard to share a platform with detainees but he very nearly became one of the first American tourists to be detained at Heathrow,” noted Yvonne Ridley at the morning press conference, adding that she would leave all conspiracy theories to the media to pursue.

Chris Arendt - Highly Suspicious Dumpster Diver

Chris Arendt - Highly Suspicious Dumpster Diver