Daily Archives: October 18, 2005


Extraordinary rendition and torture – not just an American problem!

Award wining journalist Neil Mackay has just published a series of articles on extraordinary rendition and torture. We are posting them here on the site today along with additional material and comment from Craig Murray. This takes place in the context of the British high court currently considering the fate of the Belmarsh detainees, who may of been detained on the basis of evidence gained under torture, and the British government actively and publicaly seeking to justify the use of such evidence on a continuing basis (Real Player).

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Torture Flights: The Inside Story

By Neil Mackay writing in the Sunday Herald

THEY could be walking the streets of Sweden, Italy, Albania, Indonesia or Pakistan. They are kidnapped in broad daylight, hooded, drugged, shackled and placed on a jet operated by the CIA. When they wake they find themselves in a country such as Morocco, Egypt or Uzbekistan ‘ where torture is the currency of the interrogation room. The CIA hand the captive to the local secret police, and the prisoner disappears off the face of the Earth. If they are lucky, they will emerge a few years later in a cage in Guantanamo Bay, broken by beatings, rape and electrocution … if they are unlucky, they are never seen again.

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Two experts on extraordinary rendition: one invented it, the other has seen its full horrors

An excellent report from Neil Mackay. There is one important error – in the penultimate para MI6 head of station should read CIA head of station – there was no MI6 station in Tashkent.

Uzbekistan withdrew intelligence co-operation from the US and UK three weeks ago – it is worth noting that we didn’t stop, they did. Bush has announced that Uzbekistan should be given “One last chance” to restore intelligence co-operation before the US considers sanctions similar to those undertaken by the EU. So it is not the torture the US objects to, it is the new Uzbek refusal to share the results of it.

Extraodrdinary rendition, however, goes on elsewhere. I happened to be in Uzbekistan and blew the whistle on our cooperation with torture there. In Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Morocco and many other destinations, extraordinary rendition continues unabated.

This War on Terror. Remind me, who are the good guys?

Craig

By Neil Mackay in the Sunday Herald

These two men are experts on rendition: one invented it, the other has seen its full horrors

IF there are two men in the world who know about ‘extraordinary renditions’ then they are Michael Scheuer, the CIA chief who invented the programme, and Craig Murray, the UK ambassador to Uzbekistan who saw first-hand the devastating consequences for British intelligence of using renditions.

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One victim’s story

By Neil Mackay in the Sunday Herald

ON each stage of his journey, as he descended further and further into the gulags and torture chambers of the war on terror, Benyam Mohammed al-Habashi was shadowed by British intelligence. The British were there in Karachi when Americans interrogated him and Pakistanis tortured him; they were feeding questions to the Moroccan torturers who took a scalpel to his penis; they stood back and watched as he was dragged to an American torture chamber in Afghanistan and then to the gulag of Guantanamo, where he languishes to this day.

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Britain sued for ‘complicity’ in torture

By Neil Mackay in the Sunday Herald

One of the world’s leading human rights lawyers is to sue Britain for its ‘complicity’ in the torture of terror suspects who have never been convicted of a crime. The news comes as a former leading British diplomat has accused the government of basing its anti-terror policies on information from torture victims that was ‘bollocks’.

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What will our grandchildren think?

Torture flights: our role in US brutality shames Britain

From the Sunday Herald

IF and when the so-called war on terror ever ends, our grandchildren or our great-grandchildren may well look back in disbelief and wonder how it could have been that, at the turn of the 21st century, the two nations that waged a global conflict under the banner of democracy could have so blatantly flouted that principle.

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