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Mon Apr 21, 2014, 05:46 AM

Why Kidnapping, Torture, Assassination, and Perjury Are No Longer Crimes in Washington [View all]



Seven Free Passes for the National Security State

With Cartwright as a possible exception, the members of the national security state, unlike the rest of us, exist in what might be called “post-legal” America. They know that, no matter how heinous the crime, they will not be brought to justice for it. The list of potentially serious criminal acts for which no one has had to take responsibility in a court of law is long, and never tabulated in one place. Consider this, then, an initial run-down on seven of the most obvious crimes and misdemeanors of this era for which no one has been held accountable.

*Kidnapping: After 9/11, the CIA got into kidnapping in a big way. At least 136 “terror suspects” and possibly many more (including completely innocent people) were kidnapped off the streets of global cities, as well as from the backlands of the planet, often with the help of local police or intelligence agencies. Fifty-four other countries were enlisted in the enterprise. The prisoners were delivered either into the Bush administration’s secret global system of prisons, also known as “black sites,” to be detained and mistreated, or they were “ rendered” directly into the hands of torturing regimes from Egypt to Uzbekistan. No American involved has been brought to court for such illegal acts (nor did the American government ever offer an apology, no less restitution to anyone it kidnapped, even those who turned out not to be “terror suspects”). One set of CIA agents was, however, indicted in Italy for a kidnapping and rendition to Egypt. Among them was the Agency’s Milan station chief Robert Seldon Lady. He had achieved brief notoriety for overseeing a la dolce vita version of rendition and later fled the country for the United States. Last year, he was briefly taken into custody in Panama, only to be spirited out of that country and back to safety by the U.S. government.

*Torture (and other abuses): Similarly, it will be no news to anyone that, in their infamous “ torture memos,” officials of the Bush Justice Department freed CIA interrogators to “ take the gloves off” and use what were euphemistically called “enhanced interrogation techniques” against offshore prisoners in the Global War on Terror. These “techniques” included “waterboarding,” once known as “the water torture,” and long accepted even in this country as a form of torture. On coming to office, President Obama rejected these practices, but refused to prosecute those who practiced them. Not a single CIA agent or private contractor involved was ever charged, no less brought to trial, nor was anyone in the Bush Justice Department or the rest of an administration which green-lighted these practices and whose top officials reportedly saw them demonstrated in the White House.

To be accurate, a single member of the national security state has gone to prison thanks to the CIA’s torture program. That was John Kiriakou, a former CIA agent who tortured no one, but offended the Obama administrations by turning whistleblower and going public about Agency torture. He is now serving a 30-month prison sentence “for disclosing a covert operative’s name to a reporter.” In other words, the only crime that could be prosecuted in connection with the Agency's torture campaign was one that threatened to let the American public know more about it.

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Reply Why Kidnapping, Torture, Assassination, and Perjury Are No Longer Crimes in Washington [View all]
xchrom Apr 2014 OP
GoneFishin Apr 2014 #1
gratuitous Apr 2014 #2
Enthusiast Apr 2014 #15
truebrit71 Apr 2014 #19
99Forever Apr 2014 #3
Dragonfli Apr 2014 #4
GoneFishin Apr 2014 #5
awoke_in_2003 Apr 2014 #6
Dragonfli Apr 2014 #7
awoke_in_2003 Apr 2014 #8
DeSwiss Apr 2014 #12
quinnox Apr 2014 #9
BelgianMadCow Apr 2014 #10
DeSwiss Apr 2014 #11
BelgianMadCow Apr 2014 #14
WillyT Apr 2014 #13
struggle4progress Apr 2014 #16
msanthrope Apr 2014 #18
struggle4progress Apr 2014 #20
daleanime Apr 2014 #17
malaise Apr 2014 #21