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Thread: Call it a tutorial for al Qaeda on how to avoid detection.

  1. #1
    Council Member Stan's Avatar
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    Default Call it a tutorial for al Qaeda on how to avoid detection.

    A very interesting article regarding recent and past CIA "kidnappings".

    http://www.opinionjournal.com/editor...l?id=110009742

    The Italian Job.
    What good is NATO if allies indict Americans after a joint operation?

    If the CIA agents did anything wrong, that's up to American authorities to decide. Mr. Spataro, an independent prosecutor, can indict as many Italians as he wants. His pursuit of U.S. government personnel, however, makes him a rogue. Aggravating the harm, Mr. Spataro cited the 25 agents by name, possibly putting their lives in danger.
    European officials need to understand the risks they're running if they keep this up. Italy and the U.S. are NATO partners, but such an alliance is meaningless if "allies" make a habit of prosecuting each other for cooperating against a common threat. Italy's political grandstanding is endangering NATO, as well as the lives of millions on both sides of the Atlantic.

  2. #2
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Lessons needed

    Quote from the opinion article:

    'No one seriously claims, however, that the CIA agents were in Italy without the explicit knowledge and participation of Italy's security services. This is the crucial point -- and explains why the indictments are a hostile act against the U.S. By long-established international legal practice, the official agents of one country operating in another with that state's permission are immune from prosecution. The status of forces agreement that governs U.S. troops stationed in Italy enshrines this principle at least for official conduct'.

    I am neither a lawyer or an Italian, but it is clear to me there is a great difference between an inter-government status of forces agreement (common across NATO) and intelligence agents working with host security services. Very different rules apply, I would be suprised if those rules have any external, let alone parliamentary oversight. No, there is no 'long established international legal practice...(giving) immunity from prosecution' unless those agents hold diplomatic immunity.

    Imagine the furore in the U.S.A., if during the Irish conflict, had British agents kidnapped a Provisional IRA supporter, say in Boston and flown him back to Northern Ireland, to be interned or put on trial. Would that be the same? No. Would Senator Kennedy have remained silent, because of our alliance? Hell no.

    Partnership means partnership, not unillateral action. If Italian agenst co-operated in the kidnap they ignored Italian law.

    I will leave aside the apparent lack of field-craft of the CIA agents in Italy, which is reported as making the prosecutors task that much easier.

    Davidbfpo

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    Default -Bust Bush The Boss Then

    The logical extension of the previous contention extends all the way up the food chain then. Why stop with a few clumsy operatives who got sloppy? Why not go all the way or don't go at all then? To my way of thinking, this whole affair lends legitimacy and gives credence to world courts and world tribunals that are markedly anti-American, much like some European nations, Belgium in particular, that are rabidly anti-Israeli. If my memory serves me right, Belgium indicted Ariel Sharon, the then PM of Israel, on war crimes. Italy IMHO really nees to, ah, bring it on or stand down, shut up and let the lead nation in the WOT do its thing.

  4. #4
    Council Member Stan's Avatar
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    Default long-established international legal practice

    Evening David !

    Imagine the future in the U.S.A., if during the Irish conflict, had British agents kidnapped a Provisional IRA supporter, say in Boston and flown him back to Northern Ireland, to be interned or put on trial. Would that be the same? No. Would Senator Kennedy have remained silent, because of our alliance? Hell no.
    You are 1,000 percent correct. I can't imagine that happening, but I am afraid it may to some extent already have take place. Granted, there's no proof, but I've watched 'our collective' best in their roles around the world. You're right, the agreements in place are for soldiers and rightfully so. The others simply fall into the role of diplomats. Indeed a shame.

    I would argue that those fine folks did not simply turn up in Italy without an invitation and their operations, while a secret were fairly clear to those involved. I would also argue, that 'yours and ours' are somewhat more mature at dealing with such issues collectively and discretely. I doubt we would hear about such events so soon, if ever.

    Hi Goesh !

    The logical extension of the previous contention extends all the way up the food chain then.
    bring it on or stand down
    I like your approach. Why beat each other, if we already permitted this to even start ? Why should it be comfortable when things go wrong ? Soldiers around the world don't have this 'exit' factor when Sierra hits the fan.

    Regards, Stan

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    Council Member Tom Odom's Avatar
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    Default Risks Versus Gains

    My concern in this arena has been the same all along and it gets at what David was speaking of, that is to say the strategic costs (risks) of such operations to the overall objective of a strategic COIN effort against Muslim extremists versus the tactical short-term gains in intelligence.

    This is very much the strategic partner to Kalev Sepp's tactical COIN Paradoxes, especially the more you shoot the less protected you are. It is counterintuitive in some ways in that the tactical gains cost more than they are worth, especially in cases such as this Italian affair. I would say this is a classic case of strategic IO fratricide.

    As for standing aside and letting the US get on with it, well we tried that in the run up to OIF with blustering rhetoric that only hurt us down the road.

    Tom

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    Council Member Stan's Avatar
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    Evening Tom !

    As for standing aside and letting the US get on with it, well we tried that in the run up to OIF with blustering rhetoric that only hurt us down the road.
    Oh, for certain, it won't be painless. We're going to pay for at least ignorance and you already know my views.

    I loved watching you perform battle of the wits each Monday 'upstairs'.

    An NCO's life is not often easy

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    Council Member bismark17's Avatar
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    Default

    MI6 may not have abducted anyone here but it sure sounds like they assassinated an american citizen that was involved in arms smuggling to the Provos if you read the book Valhalla's wake....I realize I'm missing the point. I am not thrilled with Italy but I also think it wasn't the brightest operation to run either. Especially in some of their operational choices.


    Valhalla's Wake: The Ira, M16, and the Assassination of a Young American (Hardcover)
    by John Loftus (Author), Emily McIntyre (Author)
    cut and pasted from amazon.

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    Council Member bismark17's Avatar
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    Default

    Oh, thanks for the book suggestions on the FRU and 14nth Intel Co! I have already ordered and read most of them. Fishers of men is an absolute classic. I am surprised the MOD let that get published. Maybe it wouldn't have been after 9/11....I'm going to order several more to lend out.
    Last edited by bismark17; 03-07-2007 at 01:40 AM. Reason: left something out

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