Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Secret Prisons

The Washington Post recently reported that the CIA has secret prisons in other countries, where it interrogates captured Al Qaeda members. As someone who has regularly watched Alias and 24 and countless movies with similar themes, and who has read books by Tom Clancy, etc., I would have already assumed that the CIA was doing something like this. It's interesting that so much popular culture depicts CIA (or other government) agents interrogating people secretly, etc., as something necessary or even heroic, but that so many people seem to be shocked that something like this really happens.


Blogger Stuart Buck said...

Huh? I began the post with several examples.

8:26 AM  
Blogger Richard H said...

If the war with Al Qaeda is only a police action against criminals, then I can understand the desire for a transparent system to adjudicate their situation. But then the category of war has been eliminated. PErhaps this is easier after all the other "wars" we've engaged in have diluted the concept (I'm thinking of the War on Poverty, War on Drugs, War on Obesity, etc.).

Or perhaps people are thinking its not a real war because wars are conflicts between nation states and Al Qaeda is not a nation state. If one must have a nation state as a player for a war to exist, then I'd think that the fact of Al Qaeda's attack on a series of nation states would make it a war.

We could go a bit farther and take Philip Bobbitt's suggestion that the nation state is transitioning to the market state, an era in which what we'd now call non-state organizations will have more prominence.

Either way, it looks like a war to me. Being a war, such prisons need not only physical security but informational security. Not only does Al Qaeda not need to know where the prisons are, WE as average US citizens don't have a need to know. It doesn't bother me in the least.

8:50 AM  
Blogger sean said...

Nothing, Mr. Gowder, nothing at all but sheer good luck prevents that fascist dictator Bush from arresting you right now.

4:08 PM  
Blogger Bill Baar said...

Go to the CIA's website. Look under employment and you'll see a video clip about the agency done by Jennifer Gardner of alias fame.

Note Wilson and Plame posed for Vanity Fair in a Jaguar as though they had watched to many James Bond flicks.

Social Security, Department of Agriculture so fortunate Hollywood doesn't do any features about them because the nexus of pop culture and politics is bad for both Hollywood and Government Agency: they both get swamped in their fake image.

Most everything about the CIA is secret. No one should be surprized the prisons are secret. If we can't hold these folks in prisons, the alternatives are kill them or let them go. What else should we do with them? They're not criminals, there at war with us.

I hope Hastert and Frist successful with their call to investigate. A CIA gone Hollywood spooks me.

4:16 PM  

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