maher day

i am right now in a country that had the good sense to splash maher all over the front pages of major papers and broadcast news, citing it as the first example of a big "mistake" made in the name of the war on terror. thank you, washington post et al, for noticing.

the incomparable maher is a headline today thanks to his long-awaited exoneration. the closing of this chapter in his painful story has now opened the door for him to seek retribution. and he's going for it. his case against canada is a strong one, if not bleak. and so he's suing canada for something like 450 million. fuck. ok. get it and run, i say. when maher was addressed in the house of commons today, harper made no actual apology, but he sure tried to sound regretful. nice.

guess i'm feeling glad this thing is getting done for maher, that the media hasn't forgotten him, and that the right lines are seemingly being drawn between this story and the Bigger Point - that the so-called war on terror is executed with very real costs to very innocent people.

the news flurry today transported me instantly to when maher returned home from his syrian torture hell. alex neve - our head cheese at amnesty - called from the trudeau airport in montreal where he was waiting to greet maher right off the plane. all us staff were gathered in the board room of the amnesty office to greet alex when he got back to ottawa to recount in precise detail every moment of the mayhem that surrounded maher in that airport. later, when we were visited at the office by maher himself, most of us fumbled our words when attempting to convey to him, meekly, how honoured we were to say hi. for me, it was a surreal experience - the abstract work life collided poignantly with a real life moment, an in-the-flesh person to touch and talk to, who brings into sharp real-life focus every reason for every thing we do, and why.


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