More info on the specific Uzbek allegations by Murray from Registan.net here.
I watched 60 minutes last sunday (I know, I should know better) and they featured this former British Ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray, seen here with Scott "The Chin" Pelley.
The story was on a process called rendition (originated in the Clinton administration) whereby foreign nationals caught by US troops in battle are returned to their native country. This is not done 100% of the time, and depends on the nature of those captured (ie if we captured OBL, we wouldn't send him back to Suadi Arabia). CBS is concerned that when these foreign nationals are returned to their home countries, they will be tortured - which probably does occur. They relied heavily on an interview with Craig Murray, former Ambassador to Uzbekistan (which borders Afghanistan) and who was apparently aware of some harsh torture taking place in that country.
Well, it turns out that this guy (Craig Murray) isn't just any former ambassador... he's a candidate for a Member of Parliament (MP) slot in the UK. And his website features the following reasons for the people of Blackburn to vote for him:
Why Vote Against Jack [Straw and for Craig Murray] ?Now, this doesn't eliminate the concern over torture of people in Uzbekistan - although what the Uzbeks do with their own citizenry that we capture on a battlefield is really not something we have control over. I would guess that if were instead to take the Uzbeks we capture in Afghanistan and transfer them to Gitmo or some other US facility, little Craiggie would be all atwitter about the US kidnapping foreign nationals and not returning them to their home governments... I feel that this may be less about what happens to those captured and more about Craig Murray/Bush. We can pressure them diplomatically, or I supposed we could invade them too and enforce democracy and human rights on them, too... although I suspect Craig wouldn't approve that either, based on his statement above about Iraq.
- A vote for Jack Straw is a vote for a dossier of lies. Jack Straw was in charge when MI6 when produced its "dodgy dossier" on Iraq. Then he led us into an illegal war, based on lies, against the wishes of the UN security council.
- A vote for Jack Straw is a vote for torture. Jack Straw expressly agreed that MI6 should use intelligence material obtained under torture, in tyrannical regimes like Uzbekistan.
- A vote for Jack Straw is a vote for George Bush. Under Jack Straw, our Foreign Office has slavishly sold out Britain's principles for blind support of the USA.
Other interesting info from his website:
Like so many of the British people, I was aghast as we launched an illegal war, plainly against the wishes of the UN Security Council. We were so sure we would lose at the UN we didn’t even put it to the vote.When my weatherman incorrectly predicts the weather, do I call him a liar and demand that he resign? No, I understand that his predictions for the future were based on information he currently has - and with time and more information, his predictions would become more accurate.
Like many in the FCO I knew in advance that the so-called dossier on weapons of mass destruction was full of lies. 152 of its alleged "facts" are now known to be complete fabrication.
Now they tell us the WMD were not the reason for war but rather it was to bring democracy to Iraq. Yet at the same time the West is giving financial and military support to the Karimov regime in Uzbekistan, one of the most brutal regimes in the World.Have patience, Craig.. have patience, my good man... sometimes, convincing your friends to follow your lead is easier than forcing your enemies... Or, I s'pose we could invade on Monday, if you'd like... Now, we should remember that Bush has been talking about the spread of freedom into the Middle East as an issue of US National Security for 4 #$%ing years, but yeah... we were totally blindsided by this democracy in the middle east argument... where in the heck did THAT come from? (those wily neocons)
We appear to have sold out the principle of support for international law and the United Nations. We have replaced it with the notion of a new world order based on one superpower, led by George Bush, and that we will benefit from being his best friend.Nevermind that the UN has its own torture camps running in Africa - in the form of sexual abuse and pedophilia networks.
This is a website for those who wish actively to work against the neo-conservative world order.Hmmmm, if he's using the term NeoCon as it's used by the hardcore Left, I'd have to say that he's an Anti-Semite, too! Perhaps he really just means "hard right-wingers who used to be Lefties"... well, I'll give him the benefit of the doubt on this one.
If we can defeat Jack Straw, the Foreign Secretary, in Blackburn we can send the strongest possible signal of disapproval of the Bush/Blair foreign policy.ahhhh, his election is about stickin' it to Bush! It might have helped put Craig's information in perspective if CBS had disclosed that Craig isn't exactly a "fan" of the War On Terror, democracy in the Middle East, etc, etc. Or mentioned that Craig was not just some former ambassador, but a political candidate running against a top Blair cabinet minister? But hey, we're talking CBS' 60 Minutes here, so we shouldn't expect them to question the biases of anti-Bushies.
ARC: St Wendeler