He was transferred to the now decade-old prison in a military flight on
February 6, 2003. Following his arrival, he received the traditional orange jumpsuit now associated with the detention center. The next day, he was
interrogated by the FBI and placed in isolation for 30 days. The month-long seclusion, during which his only human contact was provided by several groups
of interrogators, was designed to "wear down" new detainees, according to the standard operating procedures of Camp Delta.
As a whole, the Bagram and Guantanamo experiences prompted a deep feeling of mistrust in authorities, according to Dr. Katherine Porterfield.
"I've worked with survivors of torture from countries all around the world, but I had never faced a patient who initially doubted who I was, and who
thought that I, as a doctor, might be there to harm him," she said.
His attorneys David Frakt and Eric Montalvo, two JAG officers who were assigned to his case, faced a similar reaction when they first met him. "He couldn't
believe I was there to actually help him. He reasoned that since I was with the government then my role was to interrogate him or that it was all fake,"
Jawad's distrust was apparent even the day when Montalvo informed him that the government had withdrawn their case after a judge declared that most of the
evidence supplied by the prosecution had been obtained through torture. Through the gates of Camp Iguana, Montalvo told his client that he was soon going
to be released. Initially, Jawad's reaction wasn't the ultimate bliss that one would expect of someone who had now lived almost a third of his life devoid
"In a way he had a measured response to some extent because he had been told many, many things that hadn't happened," Montalvo surmised. "At the same time
he was happy that we were having that conversation. In the end, the sheer moment of joy was when he met me later in Kabul. We saw each other and it was his
first day as a free man. There, he got down and kissed the ground."
After nearly seven years in captivity, Jawad returned to Afghanistan in August 2009, where he met President Hamid Karzai, who promised him a house in a PR
stunt during a reelection campaign. The pledge was never fulfilled and life has been difficult for Jawad since he returned, according to Montalvo, who
still calls him from time to time.
"He clearly had some psycho-social issues and he was basically deprived of his adolescent years, so he was sort of the boy in the bubble who went back to a
society that is fairly harsh," Montalvo said. "He has no income and no support and has all these accusations against him still hanging on his back, so, how
would you feel in that situation? It didn't go well for him."
"At the same time, he's alive and healthy and not in trouble, so, you know, it depends on what expectations you have."