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January 11, 2004

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That last article I linked to is via CalPundit, he and especially Jeanne D'Arc have been covering this some.

The bubbly and vivacious ambassador to Canada is the former governor of my state, who reminds me that as little as I like living in "Mittsachusetts" it could be worse.

I'm not too surprised that it did not get much coverage in the US. There seems to be a very large meme going around the US blogosphere (and media for that matter) that if something, somehow, doesn't affect Americans, then it doesn't matter.
This seems to be reflected, when talking about legal and civil rights, by adopting a legalistic stance on matters such as the Arar case, and completely ignoring the moral ideas behind the framing of the law.
Strangely enuff I don't tend to see this attitude as mainly a rightist attitude, it tend to affect all the spectrum.

I vaguely remember reading, though I do not have a cite for this, that the reason he's a joint citizen is that Syria did not allow him to renounce his citizenship there.

I have read the same thing: all the reports say that Maher Arar was travelling on a Canadian passport, that he had become a naturalized Canadian citizen in 1991, and that he had as far as he was concerned renounced his Syrian citizenship: but that Syria doesn't accept that native-born Syrians have a right to renounce Syrian citizenship.

But it is fairly clear that something terrible happened, to a citizen of one of our closest allies, because of us. It seems very likely that it happened even though he was innocent. And our government is more or less unrepentant, and does not promise not to do the same thing again.

Why should they? They have been doing the same sort of thing all along to citizens of allied countries in Bagram Airbase and Guantanamo Bay.

Factory:Strangely enuff I don't tend to see this attitude as mainly a rightist attitude, it tend to affect all the spectrum.

I think so. See: You see, the trouble is, I'm not actually American ...

I'm going to wait for more in the way of fact to come out. Sure, this needs to be investigated. HAS to be investigated. A serious accusation has been made, and someone needs to be held accountable.

But DeLong calling for a Bush impeachment is an indication of how unhinged otherwise rational people can be when suffering from BHS. There's nothing anywhere in there that has anything whatever to do with Bush. Unless, maybe, Bush had written an executive order making it all happen.

Slart, Bush did have to issue a presidential finding authorizing the use of extraordinary rendition. It's in the original article cited by BdeL. The author of the editorial asks, rhetorically, from whence the President derives the power to authorize torture. It's a good question.

Per SFGate (which I usually find to be something to the left of objective):

This secret program for torturing suspects has been authorized, if that is the right word for it, by a secret presidential finding. Where the president gets the authority to have anyone tortured has never been explained.

Hasn't been explained at all, as far as I'm concerned. Hell, its very existence is suspect. SFGate: shoddy reporting since, well, we can't remember.

The stuff about the presidential authorization was the weakest part of the article, I thought. We simply don't know what Bush's involvement was, if any. I am almost 100% certain it fell far hort of, "yes, deport this Candian to Syria, where he will probably be tortured based on weak evidence." Calls for impeachment are premature at best. But it took DeLong's calling for the President's impeachment, and Crooked Timber's call for someone going to jail--to make me realize that it hadn't even occured to me that there had to be an investigation, or that someone, and possibly someone relatively high up, could lose their job over this. I am not comfortable with that level of complacency, and I think it's much, much more harmful than some overheated blog rhetoric.

But DeLong calling for a Bush impeachment is an indication of how unhinged otherwise rational people can be when suffering from BHS. There's nothing anywhere in there that has anything whatever to do with Bush.

True, it is every bit as silly as someone calling for Clinton’s impeachment after Ruby Ridge, Waco, or Elian Gonzales. Looks like Brad Delong is every bit as "rational" as Jerry Falwell.

I agree, Katherine. Kimmitt noted this situation a while back mid-November), and I think it just took this long to come up to the collective consciousness. Because in the blogosphere, unlike in the dailies, a story dies when there's a dearth of fact.

I have to confess that when I read it, I thought it inevitable that the Canadian government would press the U.S. government very hard for an investigation into the matter. Oh, via Kimmitt (again), here's more on the matter. From WaPo, no less.

Do I need to put a few exclamation points on the end of the last post, so people will go read the WaPo article? Someone did in fact make the call, and that person no longer has his job.

If Arar's account is truthful, he needs to lose more than his job. He, along with anyone else involved.

Slarti--thank you, thank you. I'm going to post that on the main page.

:)

I exist only to serve man. [/Twilight Zone]

QUESTION: Has Maher Arar taken a terrorist training course in Middle East ?

ANSWER: No.

Maher Arar: 27 January 2007
A public apology from the Canadian Prime Minister, compensation of US$8.0mil. Head of RCMP resigns in disgrace. And still the United States of Torture refuses to acknowledge its gross mistake. On a blog site recently, someone accused me of being an obese, blond, blue-eyed, closet Nazi, SUV driving American. Now that's really getting nasty. American citizen is an accident of birth, but you don't have to live there.

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