lunedì, dicembre 05, 2005

Condaleeza Rice tells off Europe

In a strange turn of events the US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, is expected* to issue a warning to Europe today about the illegal US prison camps in Eastern Europe, including Kosova, being run for the interrogation and internment of people the US administration might consider a threat. I wrote a while ago about a US base on the island of Diego Garcia, that was being used as a secret prison facility. She will also defend what is called "Rendition" - or what the rest of us call "Kidnapping" - as practised by the US Secret Services on a seemingly regular basis all around the world.

Of course, the main thrust of the expected attack will be based on the fact that the countries of Europe are condemning the existence of these illicit prison camps. The US secret services were recently exposed, resulting in arrest warrants being issued against CIA operatives in Italy, when they "caught" a suspected terrorist by using the simple expedient of kidnapping him off the street and taking his to a US air base in northern Italy, thence flying him on to a US air base in Germany en route for Egypt.

It brought to mind a quotation recorded at the time of the Nuremberg trials at the end of WW2, when Herman Goering reportedly said to Gustave Gilbert, a German-speaking intelligence officer and psychologist working with the allied forces during the trials:

“Of course the people don't want war. But after all, it's the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it's always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it's a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to greater danger."

Obviously a political view that is still firmly held in some government circles.

* The transcript of Condaleeza Rice's speech can be read here. She claimed that: "In some situations a terrorist suspect can be extradited according to traditional judicial procedures. But there have long been many other cases where, for some reason, the local government cannot detain or prosecute a suspect, and traditional extradition is not a good option. In those cases the local government can make the sovereign choice to cooperate in a rendition. Such renditions are permissible under international law and are consistent with the responsibilities of those governments to protect their citizens." Perhaps she has already forgotten that the US operation in Italy was undertaken completely without the "soveriegn choice" of either the Italian people, nor the Italian government. What price for truth now? It is no wonder that she is known as "Conda-liesalot Rice" back in the US of A...