Saturday, August 12, 2006



Here's something to chill the soul from MSNBC:

LONDON - NBC News has learned that U.S. and British authorities had a significant disagreement over when to move in on the suspects in the alleged plot to bring down trans-Atlantic airliners bound for the United States.

A senior British official knowledgeable about the case said British police were planning to continue to run surveillance for at least another week to try to obtain more evidence, while American officials pressured them to arrest the suspects sooner. The official spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the case.

Sure OK. It almost seems like the US wanted to get these guys before they had a chance to pull some kind of stunt that goes boom, right?

Analysts say that in recent years, American security officials have become edgier than the British in such cases because of missed opportunities leading up to 9/11.

Maybe our guys learned a lesson about taking threats seriously, right?

Here is where we go off the tracks into the unbelievable land of savagery that the War on Terror has become:

The British official said the Americans also argued over the timing of the arrest of suspected ringleader Rashid Rauf in Pakistan, warning that if he was not taken into custody immediately, the U.S. would "render" him or pressure the Pakistani government to arrest him.

British security was concerned that Rauf be taken into custody "in circumstances where there was due process," according to the official, so that he could be tried in British courts. Ultimately, this official says, Rauf was arrested over the objections of the British.

For those of you who don't have the your copy of Fascism 101 handy, to "render" someone (shorthand for extraordinary rendition) is to use the intelligence assets of the United States, such as the CIA, to kidnap citizens of other nations, drug them, and fly them to one of several "black sites" where they are brutally tortured for information. Anyone can be rendered. Without the benefit of charges, evidence, or representation, any citizen of any country in the world can be rendered if the United States suspects that person of being involved in terrorism in any way.

So, according to these British sources, the Brits had to fight the bloodthirsty American government to keep them from rendering their suspects. In the end, the Pakistanis, no doubt ordered and supervised by the CIA, nabbed one of the guys and after "interrogation" he gave up the names of the the others.

I want to go into extraordinary rendition a little more. Here is a nicely concise definition and history of the phrase from the site World Wide Words:

This legal term has gained much attention in the press in the past couple of years because of reports that the CIA has been capturing terrorism suspects in one country and delivering them with no court hearing or extradition process to a second, in which torture is practiced, in order to get confessions or useful intelligence. The term dates to the end of the 1980s at the latest, but is in the news at the moment because of accusations that the CIA is being actively aided by the British government, and because of a court case last month in New York in which a Canadian citizen challenged his removal to Syria in this way.

The core of the term is rendition, an old but little-known legal principle. It comes from an obsolete French term that derives from render, to give back or render. Most people know rendition as a posh word for the performance of an actor or musician, but in the time of the first Queen Elizabeth—about 1600—it referred to the surrender of a garrison (the occupants rendered, or gave themselves up, to the victors).

In US law rendition refers to the transfer of individuals from a foreign jurisdiction to the USA to answer criminal charges; the defendant is said to have been rendered up to justice. However, the formal process iextraditionon. When the transfer is done by extra-judicial methods, the process is strictly called informal rendition, though this can be casually shortened to rendition.

A problem for the security forces is that once brought to the USA the person is subject to US law and the rules of due process, which of course excludes torture. Hence extraordinary rendition, a euphemism for taking them to a country where these rules do not apply.

The rules do not apply.

This is what we've become. Our own allies are afraid to let terror suspects fall into the hands of the dreaded Americans because they will be tortured.

This is a matter of policy.

This is not " a few bad apples" or some other kind of aberration.

This is the policy of the United States of America.

We are so lost......


Anonymous Nemo said...

Robert: Excellent work and excellent research! It's amazing how OPENLY our Fascist "leadership" now indulges itself in its perceived "Master Race" status. Even the UK's The Telegraph early on sneered at the glaring fact that Bush and his GOP Mafia were attempting to bask vicariously in the glory of what was strictly a *British* operation, milking it for all it might be worth. And now THIS! These bastards are obviously completely superficial, willing to pursue *any* course of action -- legitimate or not, prudent or otherwise -- just to get a bit of cheap publicity, "justice be damned!". This toxic Republikan Reich MUST go!

Sun Aug 13, 06:46:00 AM  

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