"Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please." (Mark Twain)

Monday, June 27, 2005

Our Coalition Is Strong 

I am intrigued by the story about a court in Italy (which, you will recall, holds an honorary membership in New Europe) issuing arrest warrants for 13 alleged CIA operatives who kidnapped an Islamist imam from the streets of Milan a month before the kickoff to Dick & Dubya's Excellent Invasion, and spirited him away to be tortured by our good friends in Egypt. Laura Rozen, who provides a link to this generally good (aside from its shameful, offhand implication that Ansar al-Islam was in any way associated with the Hussein regime) piece in the Boston Globe, mentions something that I hadn't previously known - the Italian press is naming all 13 of these individuals by name, along with their "dates and places of birth, credit card numbers, and American addresses."

Wow. If it is the case that 13 CIA operatives have been so thoroughly outed in the Italian press, the implications are mindboggling. This represents an enormous loss of intelligence assets, at the hands of one of our closest allies. Reuters is now reporting that Italy will seek extradition of the fugitives, which means that the US government might now find itself simultaneously embroiled in two potentially explosive extradition battles (the case of Luis Posada Carriles being the other).

Of course, the question on most observers' minds is why. Is it a payback for the killing of Nicolo Calipari? Or is it something much simpler, nothing more than an ethical rejection of the Boy King's torture policies? It's impossible to say, at this point, but it will be interesting to watch developments as they unfold.

 

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