Sunday, October 03, 2010

Siddiqui: HIG Group Interrogation?

We know the German of Afghani descent who purportedly spilled the beans on a Mumbai style terror plot in Europe was taken to Bagram AFB after being caught. But how did he get there? Was he rendered?

Stories are vague about where and how he was captured. Most now say:
Siddiqui, 36, was picked up in Kabul in early July.
The paper of record and spilling top secret info mirrored that account. Yet earlier reports said:
Intelligence and law enforcement authorities in the US and Europe said the threat information is based on the interrogation of a suspected German terrorist allegedly captured on his way to Europe in late summer and now being held at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan.
Emphasis added. If he was training in Waziristan then technically Afghanistan would have been "on the way". But that's a darned long walk.

What about the info? As Tom Maguire asks, how did they get it? Did Obama's crack new HIG terror interrogation team (the one as yet formed during the Christmas Day underbomber attempt) kick into gear?
Members of the new interrogation unit will have the authority to travel around the world to talk to suspects and will be trained to handle certain high-interest people, such as al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. Linguists and cultural and interrogation specialists will be assigned to the group and will have "some division of responsibility" regarding types of detainees, a senior administration official said. Most of the group's members will work there full time, although they will have part-time support from the FBI.

Interrogators will not necessarily read detainees their rights before questioning, instead making that decision on a case-by-case basis, officials said. That could affect whether some material can be used in a U.S. court of law. The main purpose of the new unit, however, is to glean intelligence, especially about potential terrorist attacks, the officials said.
So was he Mirandized? Martinized? Anything? Where's that old time curiosity? Ya know, that opportunistic duty to point out any contrast between humane interrogation and the torture tactics of Bush, Cheney and the Yoo?

Surely it doesn't take a blogger to figure it out. As made clear by the warnings on European travel an attack may still come at any minute. Chest thumping about new tactics--only to have people die via the same 'thwarted' attack--would be bad form. So when (and if) this blows over there will be plenty of time to herald the new methods (probably a few days before the election in the New York Times and concurrent with the early snippets of Bush's memoirs).

But Axelrahm best be careful, especially if Siddiqui was indeed rendered then later slapped around to any level, which will no doubt come out via some channel eventually. The Andy Worthingtons of the world are always lying in wait to proclaim outrage over our treatment of terrorists, especially those named Siddiqui and our gulag at Bagram, no matter how much support they threw towards the One when he was the One.

Also, now that everyone knows he's in Bagram everyone will also be waiting and wondering when he'll be departing for trial somewhere.

MORE 10/4/10

CNN relays an interview with a family member of Mr. 'Sidiqi' (spelled differently than previous reports and unlike the AQ mistress), who says he's basically one halo short of an angel. The Germans say otherwise, that he's been on their radar since 9/11.

The story did confirm he wasn't technically rendered as in a CIA airplane, although he was evidently grabbed by a bunch of guys who put a black bag over his head. According to a letter sent out he hasn't been tortured yet but he had seen Cheney wandering the halls with a menacing glare. OK, I made that last part up.


Debbie said...

All good questions and so far I don't have any answers. Will be interesting to follow.

With everything going on in real life, I haven't had time to devote much to the blog lately and sources seem to be silent for some reason. That in itself I find very interesting.

Right Truth

A.C. McCloud said...

It's pretty quiet all around right now. Let's hope that's a good sign.