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Obama lets CIA keep controversial renditions tool
Chicago Tribune ^ | 1/31/2009 | Greg Miller

Posted on 01/31/2009 3:28:44 PM PST by csvset

Chicago Tribune 

WASHINGTON -- The CIA's secret prisons are being shuttered. Harsh interrogation techniques are off-limits. And Guantanamo Bay will eventually go back to being a wind-swept naval base on the southeastern corner of Cuba.

But even while dismantling these discredited programs, President Barack Obama left an equally controversial counterterrorism tool intact.

Under executive orders issued by Obama last week, the CIA still has authority to carry out what are known as renditions, or the secret abductions and transfers of prisoners to countries that cooperate with the U.S.

Current and former U.S. intelligence officials said the rendition program is poised to play an expanded role because it is the main remaining mechanism -- aside from Predator missile strikes -- for taking suspected terrorists off the street.

The rendition program became a source of embarrassment for the CIA, and a target of international scorn, as details emerged in recent years of botched captures, mistaken identities and allegations that prisoners were turned over to countries where they were tortured.

The European Parliament condemned renditions as an "illegal instrument used by the United States." Prisoners swept up in the program have sued the CIA as well as a subsidiary of Boeing Corp., which is accused of working with the agency on dozens of rendition flights.

But the Obama administration appears to have determined that the rendition program was one component of the Bush administration's war on terrorism that it could not afford to discard.

The decision underscores the fact that the battle with Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups is far from over and that even if the U.S. is shutting down the prisons, it is not done taking prisoners.

"Obviously you need to preserve some tools, you still have to go after the bad guys," said an Obama administration official, speaking on condition of anonymity when discussing legal reasoning behind the decision. "The legal advisers working on this looked at rendition. It is controversial in some circles and kicked up a big storm in Europe. But if done within certain parameters, it is an acceptable practice."

One provision in one of Obama's orders appears to preserve the CIA's ability to detain and interrogate terrorism suspects as long as they are not held long-term. The little-noticed provision states that the instructions to close the CIA's secret prison sites "do not refer to facilities used only to hold people on a short-term, transitory basis."

Obama's decision to preserve the program did not draw major protests, even among human-rights groups. Leaders of such organizations said that reflects a sense, even among advocates, that the United States and other nations need certain tools to combat terrorism.

"Under limited circumstances, there is a legitimate place" for renditions, said Tom Malinowski, the Washington advocacy director for Human Rights Watch. "What I heard loud and clear from the president's order was that they want to design a system that doesn't result in people being sent to foreign dungeons to be tortured."

In his executive order on lawful interrogations, Obama created a task force to re-examine renditions to make sure that they "do not result in the transfer of individuals to other nations to face torture" or otherwise circumvent human-rights laws and treaties.


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: bho44; bhocia; bhogwot; cia; oboma; rendition; renditions; tools
A kinder, gentler rendition ?
1 posted on 01/31/2009 3:28:45 PM PST by csvset
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To: csvset

What’s up with this “harsh interrogations” crap anyway? Is being “harsh” with a murdering Islamofascist terrorist now against the Geneva/Hague conventions too?


2 posted on 01/31/2009 3:36:13 PM PST by FlingWingFlyer (I wish it was 20 January 2013. I've had enough of this crap already.)
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To: FlingWingFlyer

Everything the CIA does should be secret.


3 posted on 01/31/2009 3:40:30 PM PST by Venturer
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To: csvset
discredited programs

Discreditied by whom? The terrorists? The French? Code Pink? When the next attack comes... and with the restrictions upon those who protect us going up every day they will, we'll see if the American people really want to make smores and sing Cum-bye-ya with terrorists or kick their asses.

4 posted on 01/31/2009 3:42:10 PM PST by Feckless (No Birth Certificate... No Peace)
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To: Venturer

I agree. If everything they do has to be reported by the national “news media”, then what’s the sense of even having the CIA.


5 posted on 01/31/2009 3:42:19 PM PST by FlingWingFlyer (I wish it was 20 January 2013. I've had enough of this crap already.)
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To: csvset

If Obama is closing down Guantanamo, rendition flights of the prisoners can’t be far behind. Those animals are not wanted in the U.S. or Europe.
So where will they end up? China, in Woo’s pig pen? (HBO Deadwood reference)


6 posted on 01/31/2009 3:47:35 PM PST by muleskinner ("You know the Germans always make good stuff')
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To: csvset
Hmmm... Is this going to put a crimp into Congressman-Traitor John Conyers Jr.'s promised probe of "Bush Crimes"?

Or does it just mean that he will probe "Obama's Crimes" alongside the "Bush Crimes"?

7 posted on 01/31/2009 3:57:43 PM PST by Zeppo (Save the cheerleader, save the world...)
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To: FlingWingFlyer; All
"What’s up with this “harsh interrogations” crap anyway? Is being “harsh” with a murdering Islamofascist terrorist now against the Geneva/Hague conventions too?"


8 posted on 01/31/2009 4:07:14 PM PST by musicman (Until I see a REAL C.O.L.B. BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
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To: csvset

That make it official, where’s my Code Pink “ARREST OBAMA” shirt?


9 posted on 01/31/2009 4:13:32 PM PST by Doctor Raoul (Somewhere In Kenya, A Village Is Missing It's Idiot)
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To: FlingWingFlyer

After watching BHO in the primaries I discovered that one of his favorite words is “divisive” with the short “i” not the long “i” the other word he loved to use in speeches was
“shuttered”


10 posted on 01/31/2009 4:17:27 PM PST by MissDairyGoodnessVT (Off Hunting------- for the COLB)
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To: csvset

In any case, if I read it correctly, he just gave a one-year extention to both Guantanamo and the supposed secret CIA prisons. Now he’s signed off on renditions.

I want to agree with some others. Everything the CIA does should be secret. It would be secret now, except that CIA was doing everything it could to soil Bush’s nest. It is noteworthy that almost everything that they exposed in an effort to hurt Bush will now continue under Obama.


11 posted on 01/31/2009 4:34:32 PM PST by marron
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To: csvset

I’d prefer that Obama have kept going and repudiated renditions.

Both torture and torture by proxies help lose the “war” for us.


12 posted on 01/31/2009 4:45:09 PM PST by secretagent
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To: All

“Obama’s decision to preserve the program did not draw major protests, even among human-rights groups. Leaders of such organizations said that reflects a sense, even among advocates, that the United States and other nations need certain tools to combat terrorism.”

LOL, what a bunch of hypocrites, they would’ve skewered Bush.

The upper echelon of the Socialist crowd will cover for Obama occasionally, but something tells me that the Dummies, and moveon’sters will be up in arms lmao.


13 posted on 01/31/2009 5:04:51 PM PST by rbmillerjr (Colin Powell types begged for McCain moderates and then voted Democrat.)
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To: csvset

My guess is the reason the Left isn’t screaming about this is that they probably don’t know about it.


14 posted on 01/31/2009 5:08:53 PM PST by GrouchoTex (...and ye shall know the Truth and the Truth shall set you free....)
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To: csvset

Not crazy about your typography. Hard to read.


15 posted on 01/31/2009 5:14:36 PM PST by Albion Wilde ("Praise and worship" is my alternate lifestyle.)
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To: rbmillerjr

I don’t know. Remember Ron Silver back in the Clinton days exclaiming, “ it’s ok, they’re our planes now”. I figure the left will now say, “it’s ok, it’s our CIA now”.

Yes, hypocrits


16 posted on 01/31/2009 5:19:26 PM PST by kalee (01/20/13 The end of an error.)
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To: kalee; rbmillerjr

hypocrits... I need a new keyboard. Sometimes it types the key I hit and sometimes it leaves it blank or gets carried away and types multiples of that key.
A new keyboard is definitely in my near future. lol


17 posted on 01/31/2009 5:24:28 PM PST by kalee (01/20/13 The end of an error.)
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To: csvset

A rendition of hope.


18 posted on 01/31/2009 7:20:33 PM PST by romanesq
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To: csvset

Also remember that rendition was first practiced in Slick Willie’s administration.


19 posted on 01/31/2009 7:32:08 PM PST by pennboy
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To: csvset
Obama's decision to preserve the program did not draw major protests, even among human-rights groups. Leaders of such organizations said that reflects a sense, even among advocates, that the United States and other nations need certain tools to combat terrorism.

"Under limited circumstances, there is a legitimate place" for renditions, said Tom Malinowski, the Washington advocacy director for Human Rights Watch.

What incredible hypocrites. Also no mention that rendition was begun under Clinton while Leon Panetta looked on.

20 posted on 01/31/2009 8:16:20 PM PST by TigersEye (This is the age of the death of reason.)
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To: Doctor Raoul
Code Pink? Are they still around? /s

I'm surprised Benjamin wasn't appointed to a cabinet post..

21 posted on 02/01/2009 4:17:02 AM PST by csvset
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To: csvset

Jodie Evans


22 posted on 02/01/2009 7:19:59 PM PST by Doctor Raoul (Somewhere In Kenya, A Village Is Missing It's Idiot)
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