When I was transferred to the Communication Management Unit, also known as the Terrorist Unit or (Guantanamo North)–a special secret illegal prison within the US BOP prison system designed especially for a selected few Muslims.
After a short time there, I was asked by the brothers there to stand up as their Amir. At this time I started classes in Islamic Sciences and did not have time to take on such a responsibility, so I refused their request.
On an early morning after sunrise, as I was on a rusted manual treadmill that was provided for us in a small cage. Shukri asked to speak to me, and knowing that it was regarding the matter of being the Amir, I tried to brush off the conversation and continue my daily routine. “You need to accept being the Amir because everyone has by ijma (consensus) decided that they want you to be, and by you not accepting, it would make the problems we have out of control.”
My workout slowed down as he engaged me in the conversation. After several minutes, I reluctantly agreed.
Over the upcoming months, I learned more about him and our other brothers in the unit. They shared their past and opened their hearts. Among that which brother Shukri agonized over was his daughter, Sanabel. He, as the other brothers in the prison, loved his family deeply, but he faced a dilemma that not many others faced. His daughter, Sanabel, who was ill from childhood, continuously occupied his thoughts. The doctors predicted that she would not live very far past the age of seven but, by the will of Allah, she made it to her mid-twenties, Alhamdulillah.
One day, my dear brother Mukhtar Albakri (One of Lackawanna Six case) came to me and told me that Shukri is in the yard crying and that I should go check on him. This yard that he was in is basically nothing more than a small cage. When I went to look for him, he had gone back to his cell. I asked him what had happened and he told me that he just got off the phone, and that his Sanabel is in critical condition, with an unlikely recovery. Read the rest of this entry »