Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Breaking the Law, Breaking the Law

Apparently Italy knows a war crime when they see it:
Italy Convicts 23 Americans for C.I.A. Renditions

In a landmark ruling, an Italian judge on Wednesday convicted a base chief for the Central Intelligence Agency and 22 other Americans, almost all C.I.A. operatives, of kidnapping a Muslim cleric from the streets of Milan in 2003.
[...]
In June, Il Giornale, a newspaper owned by the brother of Mr. Berlusconi, published an interview that it said it had conducted via Skype with Mr. Lady, the former C.I.A. base chief in Milan, whose whereabouts are unknown. In the interview, he said of Abu Omar’s abduction: “Of course it was an illegal operation. But that’s our job. We’re at war against terrorism.”
[...]
Both Mr. Castelli and Mr. Lady have retired from the C.I.A., according to former agency officials.

Most of the top C.I.A. officers said to have planned the Abu Omar rendition have left the agency, with the exception of Stephen R. Kappes, who at the time was the assistant director of the C.I.A.’s clandestine branch.

He is now the C.I.A.’s second ranking official.
But wait, there's more:
EXCLUSIVE: Convicted CIA Spy Says "We Broke the Law"

Sabrina deSousa Says U.S. "Betrayed" Her and Others Found Guilty in Kidnapping of Muslim Cleric in Italy

One of the 23 Americans convicted today by an Italian court says the United States "broke the law" in the CIA kidnapping of a Muslim cleric Abu Omar in Milan in 2003.

"And we are paying for the mistakes right now, whoever authorized and approved this," said former CIA officer Sabrina deSousa in an interview to be broadcast tonight on ABC's World News with Charles Gibson.

DeSousa says the U.S. "abandoned and betrayed" her and the others who were put on trial for the kidnapping. She was sentenced in absentia to five years in prison.

[...]
"Everything I did was approved back in Washington," she said.
[...]
Representative Pete Hoekstra (R-MI), a member of the House Intelligence Committee told ABC News that the trial was a disaster for CIA officers like DeSousa on the frontline.

"I think these people have been put out there. They've been hung out to dry. They're taking the fall potentially for a decision that was made by their superiors in our agencies. It's the wrong place to go."
[...]
"He was the wrong guy," said Baer. "It was not worth putting the reputation of the United Sates on the line going after somebody like this."
Ah yes, The Nuremberg Defense, 'we vas only following orders.'
It didn't work then and it shouldn't work now.

Yo Pete, you're right in one way, the decision was made in WH & CIA Headquarters, but that just means they should all stand trial for war crimes. As I recall the Nuremberg Trials, the minions got jail time. The puppet masters got death.

They broke US, Italian and International laws. They did it willingly. and they knew at the time they were breaking the laws.

In US criminal courts I believe that's called premeditation.



Cross posted at VidiotSpeak

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