CIA not commenting on running secret terror jails

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From the BBC, hardly surprising but still disgusting.

CIA 'running secret terror jails'

The CIA has declined to comment on claims of a covert prison network
The CIA is running a network of secret prison facilities around the world to hold high-profile terror suspects, according to a US newspaper report.
Such prisons are, or have been, located in Eastern Europe, Afghanistan and Thailand, the Washington Post claims.

It says more than 100 people have been sent to the facilities, known as "black sites", since they were set up in the wake of the 11 September attacks.

An intelligence agency spokesman told the BBC the CIA declined to comment.

Questioned about the report, White House spokesman Scott McClellan said: "I am not going into discussing any specific intelligence activities.

"I would say that the president's most important responsibility is to protect the American people. It's a responsibility he takes very seriously."

A Thai government spokesman denied playing host to secret detention facilities.

Central element

The Washington Post quotes current and former intelligence officers as saying that some top terror suspects are being held in an Eastern European country in a compound dating from Soviet times.

Its report says the covert prison system, financed by the CIA, has operated at various times in eight countries, as well as at the US naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

"The hidden global internment network is a central element in the CIA's unconventional war on terrorism," the paper says.

Details of the system "are known to only a handful of officials in the United States and, usually, only to the president and a few top intelligence officers in each host country".

Almost nothing is known about who is held, the interrogation methods used, or how decisions are made about how long they are detained.

Closely guarded

The names of the Eastern European countries allegedly involved were withheld at the request of senior US officials, the Post says, for fear their disclosure could put operations at risk.

The whereabouts of high-profile terror suspects is a closely guarded secret in Washington, says the BBC's Pentagon correspondent Adam Brookes.

The fate of such men as 11 September suspect Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is simply a mystery, our correspondent says, but there has long been an assumption that they are held in secret facilities outside the US other than Guantanamo Bay.

Individuals with close links to the intelligence agencies say the US government sees a compelling case for keeping suspected al-Qaeda operatives incarcerated secretly on foreign soil.

That way the suspects are not able to contest their detention in American courts and can be interrogated over a long period, our correspondent says.

The US has in the past faced questions over its use of "rendition", a process by which terror suspects are sent for interrogation by security officials in other countries, some of which are accused of using torture.

In August, human rights group Amnesty International called on the US to reveal details of its alleged secret detention of suspects abroad.

The group highlighted the case of two Yemeni men who claimed they were held in secret, underground US jails for more than 18 months without being charged.

During that time, they say, they were tortured for four days by the Jordanian intelligence services.

everything, Wednesday, 2 November 2005 20:54 (fifteen years ago) link

Fuck, dude, that's why it's called a "SECRET".

CIA-L (Huk-L), Wednesday, 2 November 2005 21:00 (fifteen years ago) link

Well, that settles that. Good to know. Or not know.

discus (dr g), Wednesday, 2 November 2005 21:07 (fifteen years ago) link

I guess this is just today's story which will be shrugged off by America. Did you guys catch the news that Rumsfeld stands to make a million or two from owning shares in Gilead Science who are producing the bird flu remedy?

everything, Wednesday, 2 November 2005 21:32 (fifteen years ago) link

He would have been better off owning Roche. Tamiflu is a relatively small percentage of Gilead's revenues, and due to the licensing arrangement they signed with Roche several years ago (before the bird flu fears hit), they only get about a 10% royalty on sales.

o. nate (onate), Wednesday, 2 November 2005 21:40 (fifteen years ago) link

Could be true, however it's still payday for Rumsfeld. The share price rose from $31 in February to $48 today, supposedly as a result of the global demand for Tamiflu. Rumsfeld owns between $5 million and $25 million worth of stock.

everything, Wednesday, 2 November 2005 21:49 (fifteen years ago) link

If it's true that Gilead's shares increased that much based on demand for Tamiflu, then I would go short Gilead, because that increase in valuation is out of any reasonable proportion to the actual impact of increased Tamiflu sales on Gilead's bottom line. Looking at their most recent earnings report, in the third quarter of '05, Gilead's revenues from Tamiflu were about $12 million out of total revenues of $493 million (and net income of $179 million). That's versus $1.7 million Tamiflu revenues for the 3rd quarter of '04. So yes, Tamiflu revenues are exploding, but no, it won't have a big effect on Gilead's bottom line. Even assuming that Tamiflu revenues are pure profit, they represent less than 10% of Gilead profits. So Gilead's shares should have gone up less than 10% because of Tamiflu, not the more than 50% increase that we have seen.

o. nate (onate), Wednesday, 2 November 2005 22:05 (fifteen years ago) link

a related thread from today:

Guantanamo Bay-Just some thoughts....

I posted a Reuters bit about this, too.

kingfish orange creamsicle (kingfish 2.0), Wednesday, 2 November 2005 22:08 (fifteen years ago) link


Traders are no doubt eyeing the $4 billion that the Senate just released for the purchase of vaccines.

everything, Wednesday, 2 November 2005 22:14 (fifteen years ago) link

If you read the fine print though, only $1billion of that is to go to purchases of existing vaccines (such as Tamiflu & its competitor Relenza), and that will be spread out over several years. Yes, it will increase Gilead's earnings, but by how much? And is it enough to justify the price gains we have seen? I'm still not convinced.

o. nate (onate), Wednesday, 2 November 2005 22:22 (fifteen years ago) link

How does that affect your views of Rumsfeld's behaviour then?

everything, Wednesday, 2 November 2005 22:29 (fifteen years ago) link

What behavior? What has Rumsfeld done regarding bird flu? I haven't heard anything.

o. nate (onate), Wednesday, 2 November 2005 22:36 (fifteen years ago) link

Sorry, here in Canada we tend to get all hot under the collar about tycoon politicians serving themselves larger and larger slices of whatever pies they can get their hands on. As I said upthread, America shrugs. Good for you.

everything, Wednesday, 2 November 2005 22:55 (fifteen years ago) link

from CJR Daily:

...The existence of these "black sites" in Afghanistan and Thailand has been the subject of speculation for a few years now, but what the article tells us is that these hidden prisons now also exist in "several democracies in Eastern Europe." This is problematic. If the methods of interrogation and detention that the CIA is employing are thought to be too illegal to house suspects America, then how could they possibly be legal in the countries of the "New Europe"?

The answer is that they are probably not....

kingfish orange creamsicle (kingfish 2.0), Wednesday, 2 November 2005 23:25 (fifteen years ago) link

I'm so going to get pummeled for this but...

Better pros in a black-ops environment (grown-ups who understand the moral cost of their actions, and who are more interested in verifiable and actionable intel than bloody confessions) than inexperienced, unprepared, hick GIs at Abu Ghraib.

rogermexico (rogermexico), Thursday, 3 November 2005 01:30 (fifteen years ago) link

The largest CIA prison in Afghanistan was code-named the Salt Pit. It was also the CIA's substation and was first housed in an old brick factory outside Kabul. In November 2002, an inexperienced CIA case officer allegedly ordered guards to strip naked an uncooperative young detainee, chain him to the concrete floor and leave him there overnight without blankets. He froze to death, according to four U.S. government officials. The CIA officer has not been charged in the death.


mookieproof (mookieproof), Thursday, 3 November 2005 02:32 (fifteen years ago) link

xpost And torture also produces highly dubious "intelligence." People will say just about anything to make it stop. Also, I would be slightly disturbed that people are being trained to become "pros," particularly as the US is a signatory to the Geneva Conventions and such actions only undermine any claims to be "civilised."

salexander / sofia (salexander), Thursday, 3 November 2005 02:46 (fifteen years ago) link

Also, I would be slightly disturbed that people are being trained to become "pros,"

Ever hear of the

walter kranz (walterkranz), Thursday, 3 November 2005 02:56 (fifteen years ago) link


Ever hear of the School of the Americas (now known as the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation)?

walter kranz (walterkranz), Thursday, 3 November 2005 02:57 (fifteen years ago) link

I'm not surprised by that; I knew that it happened in other countries and probably in most/all secret services. Didn't quite a few Nazis flee to South America and help train people in torture techniques?

salexander / sofia (salexander), Thursday, 3 November 2005 03:14 (fifteen years ago) link

Yeah, it's not surprising and I think it's more than slightly disturbing.

walter kranz (walterkranz), Thursday, 3 November 2005 03:30 (fifteen years ago) link

That might have been SARCASM! I volunteer with Amnesty International and hear lots of horror stories all the time.

salexander / sofia (salexander), Thursday, 3 November 2005 03:37 (fifteen years ago) link

I've been researching trying to find out about the alleged CIA - Nazi connection at the end of WWII. There's a lot of interesting stories on the web, but hardly any of them are based on credible references. What's not questionable is that the CIA worked closely with Reinhard Gehlen, a top Nazi spy, and his organization up until the 1960s. No telling what they learned from those goons. Oh wait, they are all goons. Anyone got any more credible information on this story?

viborgu, Thursday, 3 November 2005 03:50 (fifteen years ago) link

These are meant to be good analytical books:

# Blowback: America's Recruitment of Nazis and Its Effects on the Cold War (Christopher Simpson)

# U.S. Intelligence and the Nazis (Richard Breitman, Norman J. W. Goda, Timothy Naftali, Robert Wolfe)

There don't seem to be any doubts that the Allies did use and employ Nazis after WWII, much like they used evidence from Nazi "experimentations."

salexander / sofia (salexander), Thursday, 3 November 2005 04:18 (fifteen years ago) link

walter, yes -- at Fort Benning, Georgia.

Noriega, Papa Doc Duvalier, and almost every Latin American dictator you can name got their training there.

It's kind of hard to believe.

This year's big protest is almost upon us, and if you want, you can join in. My sister's going to be there. Here's the link with everything you need to know, including travel, schedule of events, etc -

Tracer Hand (tracerhand), Thursday, 3 November 2005 04:25 (fifteen years ago) link

mookieproof, I stand corrected and appalled.

rogermexico (rogermexico), Thursday, 3 November 2005 05:27 (fifteen years ago) link

eight years pass...

Former CIA Director Leon Panetta, in his new book, describes being summoned to a White House meeting and cussed out by President Obama’s chief of staff after he agreed to give the Senate intelligence committee access to documents chronicling the agency’s use of torture during the Bush administration.

“The president wants to know who the fuck authorized this release to the committees,” Rahm Emanuel, who served as Obama’s chief of staff and enforcer in 2009 and 2010, is quoted as saying while slamming the table for emphasis....

This new account from Panetta has particular relevance today, said Katherine Hawkins, national security fellow at pro-transparency group Open the Government.

“It seems that the White House’s and Director Brennan’s opposition to Senate Intelligence Committee oversight over the torture program began sooner than we knew,” she wrote in an email. “This explains why, over six months after the President promised to support release of the torture report, the White House and CIA are still insisting on unacceptable redactions. It also explains why there have been no consequences for Brennan’s role in the unlawful search of Senate computers.”

this horrible, rotten slog to rigor mortis (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 9 October 2014 15:17 (six years ago) link

one year passes...

In response to a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union, the Central Intelligence Agency today released over 50 documents detailing the agency’s torture and rendition program under the Bush administration....

"These newly declassified records add new detail to the public record of the CIA's torture program and underscore the cruelty of the methods the agency used in its secret, overseas black sites," said Jameel Jaffer, ACLU deputy legal director. "It bears emphasis that these records document grave crimes for which no senior official has been held accountable." The documents include new records about the death of Gul Rahman, who died at a CIA secret prison in Afghanistan in 2002. The CIA "Death Report" on Rahman released today details the horrific conditions he was subjected to:

"Often, prisoners who possess significant or imminent threat information are stripped to their diapers during interrogation and placed back into their cells wearing only diapers. This is done solely to humiliate the prisoner for interrogation purposes. When the prisoner soils a diaper, they are changed by the guards. Sometimes the guards run out of diapers and the prisoners are placed back in their cells in a handcrafted diaper secured by duct tape. If the guards don't have any available diapers, the prisoners are rendered to their cell nude.

"Rahman froze to death in his cell, naked from the waist down. The ACLU represents Rahman's family in a lawsuit against the two CIA-contracted psychologists who designed and implemented the torture program, James Mitchell and John "Bruce" Jessen.

we can be heroes just for about 3.6 seconds (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 15 June 2016 21:10 (five years ago) link

great job "moving forward" and not prosecuting these fucks, Obama

we can be heroes just for about 3.6 seconds (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 16 June 2016 04:53 (five years ago) link

Much of Congress with their head in the sand too on this, while there's others who sadly endorse such behavior and think its a good thing

curmudgeon, Thursday, 16 June 2016 14:04 (five years ago) link

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