[Air-l] A DistributedTeach-In on Guantanamo

David M Silver dmsilver at usfca.edu
Fri Sep 22 13:05:01 PDT 2006

Dear list members,

On October 5, 2006, there will be a national teach-in called Guantanamo:
How Should We Respond? ( http://law.shu.edu/guantanamoteachin/index.htm
). The teach-in takes place at Seton Hall Law School in Newark, New
Jersey and will be broadcasted to over 200 participating campuses in 44

Because October 5 is near, most of us won't be able to organize an event
on our own campuses. But as engaged scholars, events like this,
especially in times like ours, merit our attention and thoughts.

This project has three main elements:

1. On October 5th, Seton Hall will host an all-day conference available
at academic institutions across the United States to study the national
and international implications of indefinitely detaining hundreds of
individuals deemed "enemy combatants."

The program ( http://law.shu.edu/guantanamoteachin/page3.htm ) is
impressive. Topics range from "medical professionals and guantanamo" and
"journalists look behind the wire" to "history of torture in the modern
world" and "american detention policy: the next frontier." Speakers
include professors, attorneys, governmental officials, military
officials, religious leaders, and human rights advocates. Among the
speakers are journalists from the New Yorker, the New York Times, the
Miami Herald, and Time magazine.

2. Beginning at 10:00 EST, the Teach-In will be available via
high-quality video streams accessed through this website. Schools in
earlier time zones can pick up the sessions in progress or, by accessing
a recording of the earlier sessions, view the whole program from the

This teach-in is truly national. Currently, as of September 20, over 200
campuses in 44 states are organizing teach-ins about guantanamo. The
overwhelming majority of hosts are law schools, colleges, and
universities. There are also 5 seminaries and 1 medical school
participating in the teach-in. Additional information regarding the
technology that connects the events at Seton Hall to the rest of the
participating campuses can be found here
( http://law.shu.edu/guantanamoteachin/Teach-In_Tech_9-13-06.pdf )

3. And, of course, participating schools can schedule their own
programming instead of or in addition to some of the nationally
broadcast sessions.

For example, here at the university of San Francisco
( http://law.shu.edu/guantanamoteachin/page11.htm ), a large number of
professors and administrators have organized the following events:

Tuesday, October 5
9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Terrace Room, USF Law School

9:00 - 10:30: Attorneys Bud Walsh and Bernie Casey, both of whom
represent Guantanamo Bay detainees, will present.

10:30 - noon: Professor Richard Leo (Law School) will speak on
interrogations, with emphasis on interrogations at Guantanamo.

Noon - 1:30: Frank Lindh (father of John Walker Lindh, the "American
Taliban") will speak along with a lawyer from the firm that represented

1:30 - 3:00: Attorney and Professor Banafsheh Akhlaghi (Politics) will
speak on representing deportees, refugees, people on the no-fly list and
other people under the radar.

3:00 pm - : We will run the Internet feed from Seton Hall, beginning
with the first presentation.

A national teach-in on how to respond to guantanamo - what a great idea.
(Actually, if YOU are reading this from outside the US and are
interested in making this an INTERNATIONAL teach-in, please contact Mark
Denbeaux at denbeama [at ] shu.edu). It takes a great deal of work to
organize projects like this. It also takes a great deal of courage,
since so many college and university campuses, like so many other
sectors of American society, are hostile to engaged debate and dissent.
Finally, it takes a great deal of faith to organize projects like this -
faith in college campuses as spheres of relevance, spheres of
creativity, and spheres of democracy.

david silver
department of media studies
university of san francisco

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