The Washington Post is almost believably shocked to discover that the practice of rendition has returned to Clinton-era levels:
…it is not known how many renditions have taken place during Obama’s first term. But his administration has not disavowed the practice.
Hot Air called this a ‘surprise.’ I know that they’re being sarcastic, because those folks were as aware of the situation with regard to rendition as I have been, for about as long as I have been. Although I have to admit, I am slightly surprised by just how willing the antiwar movement was to roll over and show its belly on the subject of drone strikes; I assumed at the time that the Left actually meant it when they said that they had a problem with summarily executing jihadis. Turns out that it’s apparently sexy to progressives when it’s a Democratic President writing out the kill list.
But enough about the Left’s psycho-sexual hangups*: this situation was as inevitable as it is unfortunate, the WaPo’s objections to the contrary. While blowing up jihadis is great for a program of Lamarckian selection** among the lower levels of our terrorist opponents, and is arguably cost-effective when it comes to keeping the top of the jihadi organizational chart nice and chaotic, it’s useless for processing the middle managers. Those guys you want alive and available to be squeezed. We used to have a facility available for that – and, technically, we still kind of still do – but this administration doesn’t want to get blamed for using the techniques that were used there (note that I did not say ‘doesn’t want to use those techniques’).
The three European men with Somali roots were arrested on a murky pretext in August as they passed through the small African country of Djibouti. But the reason soon became clear when they were visited in their jail cells by a succession of American interrogators.
U.S. agents accused the men — two of them Swedes, the other a longtime resident of Britain — of supporting al-Shabab, an Islamist militia in Somalia that Washington considers a terrorist group. Two months after their arrest, the prisoners were secretly indicted by a federal grand jury in New York, then clandestinely taken into custody by the FBI and flown to the United States to face trial.
And this is a mildly eyebrow-raising case: after all, we know that these people were eventually sent to a compliant American court. What about all the people we may not be hearing about? …Oh, wait, sorry: that was me forgetting that the antiwar Left only cares about that sort of thing when it can be used to smear a Republican President***. My bad.
Moe Lane (crosspost)
*Please note that I am not suggesting that President Obama’s odd fixation with drone strikes can be explained in such terms; I imagine that if I had access to what is essentially a real-time, remote First-Person Shooter AND I was as essentially immature as the President is then I’d be probably at least be tempted to overindulgence when it came to shooting at those terrorist blobs on the screen. So at least it’s probably not a fetish, or anything.
**Much like Darwinian selection, but with the added wrinkle that any organism that’s just outside the blast radius is allowed to take notes.
***If you are in fact an antiwar activist who is genuinely concerned about whether we’re shipping people out to be tortured, then let me blunt: you have a moral obligation to vote for the Republican in the next Presidential election. The press – and Democrats in Congress – simply will not conduct any kind of meaningful oversight over our counter-terrorism operations when a Democrat is in the Oval Office. Anyone in the antiwar movement who votes for the Democrat anyway – or even more stupidly, for a third-party candidate (they won’t win) – is in fact either a hypocrite, or a moral coward.