April 16, 2021

The Mauritanian| The judge decided he was…

PVR Pictures

The film focuses on Mohamedou Ould Salahi, a Mauritanian, who was captured by the U.S. in 2002, but never officially charged, for suspected involvement in planning the 9/11 attacks. Mohamedou Ould Salahi spent 14 years at Guantanamo Bay despite never being charged with a crime. While flashbacks offer glimpses of Salahi’s treatment at Guantanamo, the central story follows how his attorney uses the intricacies of the law to try and secure his freedom.

 Mohamedou Ould Salahi was interrogated and tortured because he received a call from Bin Laden’s phone. There was no evidence and charges against Mohamedou. Mohamedou was accused of being the man who recruited people to fly planes into the World Trade Centre. While interrogation, Mohamedou was brutally tortured in every way possible to extract a confession from Mohamedou. At the last Mohamedou was assigned an attorney. Side by side the US govt. assigned an investigating officer Mr.  Lt. Colonel Stuart Couch, who after investigation found that Mohamedou was innocent and was held in captivity without any charges being framed against him.

The attorney played a very vital role in giving Mohamedou Ould Salahi justice.  As the brave, determined lawyer navigates through the judicial rhetoric, she suggests the possibilities of a broader conspiracy behind Salahi’s imprisonment.

In the last scene of the movie Mohamedou was allowed to appear in the court via video conferencing and court held that the due to insufficient charges and evidences Mohamedou was kept under captivity. Even after winning the case Mohamedou was kept in prison for another 6 years.

In the final scenes of “The Mauritanian,” as in so many true stories, we see footage of the real Salahi. The film is a classic example of how there are always 2 sides of any story. One side where Mohamedou was never given a chance to prove his innocence and the second side where with the help of attorney, Ms. Hollander, Mohamedou was finally able to express his story to the public by way of letters.

This movie is a classic example where people are framed as a criminal for no reason.  The USA, being an inquisitorial system, does not have well-defined rights of the accused. The incidents as depicted in the movie are classic example of the same. Mohamedou Ould Salahi was interrogated and tortured because he received a call from Bin Laden’s phone. However, investigating officer after investigation found no incriminating evidence against Mohamedou. The convicted and similarly framed prisoners are entitled to human rights. Here, their rights are not only violated but also not remedied.

Does the chapter of not raise questions about human rights violations in a developed country like the USA?

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Disclaimer: The above written piece is entirely based on the facts of the movie and the opinions are personal only. It doesn’t intend to harm sentiments or influence any community.

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