2006 October 23

“The CIA’s Travel Agent”: New Yorker Magazine Details CIA Use of Private Charter Airlines for Renditions


An article in The New Yorker magazine by Jane Mayer, published on this day, exposed the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) program of “extraordinary rendition” in President George W. Bush’s war on terrorism. Extraordinary rendition involved the CIA kidnapping terrorist suspects around the world and transporting them to secret prisons in Egypt and other countries, where many were tortured. The “travel agent” in the title of the article refers to private air charter companies in the U.S. to conduct the flights. Exposure of the extraordinary rendition program — and the accompanying torture — caused national and international outrage over the abuse of human rights by the Bush administration.

The practice of extraordinary renditions began in the 1990s and were used sparingly by President Bill Clinton. It was greatly expanded by President George W. Bush after 9/11 as part of the war on terror.

On February 14, 2007,  the European Parliament condemned the Bush administration’s extraordinary rendition program.

Read: Jane Mayer, The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How The War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals (2008)

Watch a documentary on extraordinary rendition: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMln8hcw4gw

Read more: Stephen Grey, Ghost Plane: The True Story of the CIA Torture Program (2006)

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