Category Archives: Rendition

States Secrets Privilege can’t be used for rendition case.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has told Eric Holder NO on using the states secret privilege argument in the rendition case against a Boeing subsidiary.

Bet that just ruined his day! From the Jurist writeup linked above:

The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled Tuesday that the state secrets privilege does not bar a lawsuit against a company that allegedly provided logistical support for CIA rendition flights. Plaintiffs Binyam Mohamed, Abou Elkassim Britel, Ahmed Agiza, Mohamed Farag Ahmad Bashmilah, and Bisher al-Rawi allege that Jeppesen Dataplan, a wholly owned subsidiary of Boeing, knowingly supported direct flights to secret CIA prisons, facilitating the torture and mistreatment of US detainees. The US Department of Justice (DOJ) intervened in 2007 before the defendant filed an answer, arguing that the lawsuit posed a risk to national security. In overturning the lower court’s dismissal of the case, the Ninth Circuit ruled that the state secret privilege must be based on actual evidence in the case, not on what evidence might be involved in the case:

Concluding that the subject matter of this lawsuit is not a state secret because it is not predicated on the existence of a secret agreement between plaintiffs and the Executive, and recognizing that our limited inquiry under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) precludes prospective consideration of hypothetical evidence, we reverse and remand.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which filed the suit on plaintiffs’ behalf, welcomed [press release] Tuesday’s ruling, saying, “[t]his historic decision marks the beginning, not the end, of this litigation.

ACLU is batting a thousand lately..and I do love it! 😉

Gates, torture and Obama’s choices..

Gates is staying on as we now know…but… Before you get your panties in a wad, read this article by Steve Clemon’s, a progressive. An excerpt from his Washington Note piece:

After speaking to some other national security policy experts very close to Bob Gates and General Brent Scowcroft, I changed course and began to see the value of Gates staying at DoD.

My hunch is that Gates wants a chance to make the kind of leaps in the Middle East I have been writing about for some time. He wants to try and push Iran-US relations into a constructive direction. He wants to change the game in Afghanistan — and the answer will not be a military-dominant strategy. He wants to try and stabilize Iraq in a negotiated, confidence building process that includes Saudi Arabia, Iran, Turkey and other regional forces. And he wants to support a big push on Israel-Palestine peace and reconfigure relations between much of the Arab League and Israel.

I hope Clemon’s hunch is right. Christ, I hope he’s right.

As for torture…and whether Obama’s administration will go or should go after the war criminals in Bush’s cabal..check out this column by Jack Goldsmith at WaPo. Personally, I don’t buy into Mr Goldsmith’s logic…but it never hurts to listen to the other side of the argument.

My problem with his logic is the pov that charging people with crimes will hinder future presidents in getting opinions and options from smart intelligent individuals.


Extraordinary Rendition and Torture are war crimes plain and simple. Never in our modern history has an administration been so callous in ignoring the rule of law and the Geneva Conventions. The people that allowed these heinous things to happen and indeed supported them, need to be held accountable. We need to show the world that we will never again allow criminals such as those in the Bush Administration to run rough shod over common sense and common decency.

Can you say rendition? I knew you could..

From The Guardian:

Information about the operation of prison ships has emerged through a number of sources, including statements from the US military, the Council of Europe and related parliamentary bodies, and the testimonies of prisoners.

The analysis, due to be published this year by the human rights organisation Reprieve, also claims there have been more than 200 new cases of rendition since 2006, when President George Bush declared that the practice had stopped.

Since Georgie lied about torture, it isn’t a stretch to believe he lied about this as well is it?