Files About UK's Role In CIA Renditions 'Accidentally' Destroyed

from the yeah,-right dept

Remember how the tapes of the CIA's torture campaign were "destroyed" under suspicious circumstances, despite orders not to destroy them? It appears something similar has happened in the UK, where files on the UK's role in CIA rendition efforts have been "accidentally destroyed." I'm wondering if anyone can read that claim without rolling their eyes.
When Tyrie asked the Foreign Office (FCO) to explain which government department keeps a list of flights which passed through Diego Garcia from January 2002 to January 2009, FCO minister Mark Simmonds replied: "Records on flight departures and arrivals on Diego Garcia are held by the British Indian Ocean Territory immigration authorities. Daily occurrence logs, which record the flights landing and taking off, cover the period since 2003. Though there are some limited records from 2002, I understand they are incomplete due to water damage."

The Foreign Office would not say whether the damaged files were UK or US records, or say where they were located. An FO spokesperson maintained that because the damage "was only recently discovered" it did not know how or when it occurred.
Convenient story. As the report notes, this follows earlier vehement denials from the UK government that Diego Garcia was used for rendition... only to later have to admit that they were lying.
Ministers of successive governments have repeatedly given misleading or incomplete information about the CIA's use of Diego Garcia. In February 2008, the then foreign secretary, David Miliband, was forced to apologise to MPs and explain that Tony Blair's "earlier explicit assurances that Diego Garcia had not been used for rendition flights" had not been correct. Miliband said at this point that two rendition flights had landed, but that the detainees on board had not disembarked.
Once again, it appears that the intelligence community is more focused on covering its tracks than on making sure it's not violating everyone's rights.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Ninja (profile), Jul 10th, 2014 @ 10:58am

    Can we have those agencies accidentally destroyed and those bad politicians that don't care about their citizens accidentally burned in the process?

    We will produce very little damage, we swear.

    Signed: we the people.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
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    Michael, Jul 10th, 2014 @ 12:12pm

    Though there are some limited records from 2002, I understand they are incomplete due to water damage.

    The same thing happened to some of the detainees in Guantanamo bay.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
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    SolkeshNaranek (profile), Jul 10th, 2014 @ 12:13pm

    Re:

    I'll bring marshmallows and hot dogs if you can bring the roasting sticks.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 10th, 2014 @ 12:20pm

    The cancer is terminal.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
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    Trevor, Jul 10th, 2014 @ 12:26pm

    Well

    I used to work in business administration, and we used a file destruction service that had two ways of destroying documents: shredding and pulping.

    Pulping is basically mixing the documents into a water solution until they are turned into pulp. Clever name, I know.

    As is always the case, based on the wording used, he is probably technically right; I'm sure the documents were "water damaged."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
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    That One Guy (profile), Jul 10th, 2014 @ 12:32pm

    Re:

    Getting there anyway. When those in charge can blatantly destroy evidence of their actions, knowing no one can or will punish them or hold them to account, then there's not really anything holding them back, and once they realize that... things start going downhill, fast.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
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    sorrykb (profile), Jul 10th, 2014 @ 12:49pm

    Water damage

    An FO spokesperson maintained that because the damage "was only recently discovered" it did not know how or when it occurred.

    I'm guessing the damage occurred when they flushed the evidence of their complicity in torture and murder down the toilet.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
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    weneedhelp (profile), Jul 10th, 2014 @ 12:49pm

    Miliband said at this point that two rendition flights had landed, but that the detainees on board had not disembarked.

    Sure... and Clinton smoked but didnt inhale. We believe ya. /s

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 10th, 2014 @ 1:01pm

    Re: Well

    They're the masters of misleading statements.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Whoever, Jul 10th, 2014 @ 1:22pm

    The winter of 1967 ...

    [last lines]
    James Hacker: How am I going to explain the missing documents to "The Mail"?
    Sir Humphrey Appleby: Well, this is what we normally do in circumstances like these.
    James Hacker: [reads memo] This file contains the complete set of papers, except for a number of secret documents, a few others which are part of still active files, some correspondence lost in the floods of 1967...
    James Hacker: Was 1967 a particularly bad winter?
    Sir Humphrey Appleby: No, a marvellous winter. We lost no end of embarrassing files.
    James Hacker: [reads] Some records which went astray in the move to London and others when the War Office was incorporated in the Ministry of Defence, and the normal withdrawal of papers whose publication could give grounds for an action for libel or breach of confidence or cause embarrassment to friendly governments.
    James Hacker: That's pretty comprehensive. How many does that normally leave for them to look at?
    James Hacker: How many does it actually leave? About a hundred?... Fifty?... Ten?... Five?... Four?... Three?... Two?... One?... *Zero?*
    Sir Humphrey Appleby: Yes, Minister.

    http://www.imdb.com/character/ch0030013/quotes

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 10th, 2014 @ 1:54pm

    This business with records being destroyed is becoming too frequent to be ignored as just happenstance. It starts one place and then suddenly the rest of the branches of government start thinking that it worked so well there, why not somewhere else that is having problems. IRS for instance???

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 10th, 2014 @ 4:46pm

    We're sorry, but the records seem to have become damaged after we stored them in the swimming pool...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
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    Crazy Canuck, Jul 10th, 2014 @ 5:06pm

    Funny how the information these agency keep that they really shouldn't end up being preserved until the end of time. Yet the documents they are ordered to keep happen to be some of the only documents that actually get destroyed....

    I think the moral of the story is that the courts should order the agencies to preserver all the information they have collected, thereby it will all accidentally be destroyed... =P

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
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    Kronomex, Jul 10th, 2014 @ 5:10pm

    You can bet that the files were both British and American. The water damage came after the files were chewed up by the dog then set alight by a careless person who spilled petrol on the remains and then dropped a lit match on it after being frightened by a paper clip. Being unable to find a full bucket of water or fire extinguisher said person realised they had a full bladder and peed on the papers thereby causing the the water damage. All rather simple when you think about it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 10th, 2014 @ 11:06pm

    Double standard

    Yet if we were to have our files get "damage" accidentally prosecutors would be able to instruct the jury to make adverse inference - that is assume the worst about what was in the documents was incontrovertible proof that we're dirty, dirty scumbags. Yet we don't see it used in government destruction of evidence cases.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 11th, 2014 @ 4:33am

    It should be clear to anyone that has followed the events the last 13 years, that "The West" is run by criminals pretending to be politicians. Torturers and murderers the whole stinking lot of them.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
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    art guerrilla (profile), Jul 11th, 2014 @ 5:44am

    Re:

    actually, to set the record straight, cliton was -as per usual- trying to be too clever by half, he was *trying* to indicate in a smartass way, that he had -technically- never 'smoked' MJ, but he had eaten MJ-laced brownies, etc...
    from what i read, though, he was a hoover when it came to cocaine...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2014 @ 7:34am

    Re:

    Well ya.... just like everywhere else. Are you seriously just now figuring this out? This isn't shocking to anybody who pays even a little attention to history.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
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    Eldakka (profile), Jul 14th, 2014 @ 8:43pm

    Re: Well

    Yes, technically correct, as are other useful similiar phrases, "Cause of death was heart failure".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
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    GEMont, Jul 19th, 2014 @ 4:42pm

    Re: Re:

    Probably true, but you might be quite shocked at how few people actually pay any attention at all to history.

    On the other hand, because history is often written by the victor and the victor is very often the bad guy, it takes a special kind of mind to read between the lines and determine the truth from the BS that is often the sole content of some parts of available history.

    For those whose only contact with history is from high school education, utter ignorance of reality might be better than what they walk away with, awareness wise.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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