Monday, July 3, 2006


Documentary recreation
With English subtitles as required

Tipton is in the Black Country, a part of the West Midlands. It used to be one of the most industrial and smoky towns in England but almost all of the factories have now been closed and knocked down. It's made the air in Tipton less dirty but unemployment has gone up in the last 20 years. The main neighbourhoods of town include Lost City (a grotty 1930's council estate), Prince’s End (a main road lined with decrepit council flats and shops), Tibbington (another rundown council estate) and Great Bridge (a bottleneck crammed with decaying old pubs and shops). Tipton was described by the BBC as "one of the few places in Britain with no middle-class".

Karachi is located on the coast of the Arabian Sea in southeastern Pakistan. A financial and commercial centre, it is the most populated city in the country.

Afghanistan is a landlocked country at the crossroads of Asia. It is bordered by Iran in the west, Pakistan in the south and east, and the People’s Republic of China to the east. Modern Afghanistan arose as an independent state in 1919, when foreign intervention ceased following the Anglo-Afghan wars. The country's recent history has seen it ravaged by the Soviet deployment of the 40th Army into Afghanistan in December 1979. The final USSR troop withdrawal took place in February 1989. The chaos and corruption that dominated post-Soviet Afghanistan resulted in the downfall of the government as it steadily lost ground to guerrilla forces and the Taliban movement seized power in 1996. They imposed a strict interpretation of Islamic law and gave safe haven and assistance to individuals and organisations that were implicated as terrorists, most notably Osama bin Laden’s Al-Qaeda network. The only city in Afghanistan with over one million residents is its capital, Kabul. The other major cities in the country are Kandahar and Kunduz, a stronghold of the Taliban.

Since 2002 the three Guantanamo Bay detainment camps (Camp Delta, Camp Iguana and Camp X-Ray) have operated as military prisons within the United States naval base in the southern part of Cuba. The camp has drawn strong criticism both in the U.S. and worldwide for its allegations of torture and the detainment of prisoners without being charged with any crime nor having a proper trial. According to the U.S. government, many detainees are considered to be illegal combatants and thus not entitled to the protections of the Geneva Convention.

Asif Iqbal, resident of Tipton and soon to be married
Ruhel Ahmed, his friend, both 19-years-old
Shafiq Rasul, their 23-year-old friend
Zahid, Shafiq’s Pakistani cousin

This fact-based story of three Muslim Brits (the so-called “Tipton Three”) and their buddy Monir mixes documentary footage with "dramatisations" of real events that took place in 2001. What started out to be a simple trip back to their homeland wound up being a tortuous adventure for them all.

Not always easy to watch, this insight to the brutal treatment any adversary is subjected to by his captors is both riveting and revealing.

for language and disturbing violent content

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