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Transparent CIA flights via Finland and Jaatteenmaki
by Thanos Kalamidas
2011-10-12 08:37:37
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For one more time the last decade Amnesty International uncovers evidence of secret CIA flights over a European member state carrying terror suspects most likely to the Guantanamo base raising for one more time questions about their legality and since this time the lucky country is Finland questions about the knowledge of the state of those flights and what really happened during the 2003 parliamentary elections that led to the resignation of the new elected Prime Minister Anneli Jäätteenmäki.

Ironically the country that strongly even forcefully preaches democracy, pacifism and justice is the country that repeatedly violates all three principals the last at least hundred years and it has done so far more provocatively the last decade with the excuse of the war against terror. And of course I'm talking about USA. And Guantanamo base apart of combining all three violations is a violation itself. Even though a US base being in a foreign soil – even hostile – gives the liberty using small gaps of the law to use torture and methods definitely unaccepted from any civilized and democratic country. Amazingly the last few years we found out that people have been freed from the base, people who had done absolutely nothing to excuse their imprisonment in the base and confinement for years and totally unethically we are even having cases of adults.

Behind these acts there is another series of not only unethical but purely illegal acts that violate fundamental laws not only in USA but a series of other countries. So kidnapping a foreign citizen from their own country and under questionable circumstances without any legal accusations fly them through the airspace of any country is illegal. But when this happens with the permission of the country makes the state and the government accomplice in a crime and in this case a very serious crime that could include accusations in different countries. For example kidnapping a Pakistani citizen and flying him over the Finnish airspace is violation of the Finnish laws and if that happened with the knowledge of the state then if this Pakistani citizen was freed found innocent of the suspicions – accusations and Guantanamo is a whole different story – he or she has every right to accuse the Finnish state for violating his/hers rights and if that person was victim of torture then the Finnish state is accomplice in a serious crime that has to answer and face the sequences from the person and the Pakistani state. And USA can escape because again and despite all the preaching ignores the decisions of the International Court but Finland is a member of the International Court obliged to obey the rules that run it.

But even if the people were found guilty kidnapping a citizen of a foreign country is a violation of his rights, the country’s where the kidnapping happened laws and of course the Finnish laws if the transportation of the kidnapped happened inside Finnish airspace. Again Finland has to answer and it is worst if the state was aware.

During the campaign period of the 2003 parliamentary elections the leader of the Centre Party (Keskusta) and most likely Prime minister to be Anneli Jäätteenmäki, accused the other main player of the elections, leader of the Social-Democrats and then Prime minister, Paavo Lipponen that during his last visit to USA - and just before the official start of the campaign - knowing that he was going to lose the coming elections and therefore the Prime Minister’s seat, he made a series of agreements with president George W. Bush for help in the forming of the alliance that would later invade Iraq and of course in his war against terror that included the acts in Guantanamo bay and everything that that might means. However the whole case was covered – literally – under the most peculiar accusation. The leader of the winning Centre Party and by then Prime minister Anneli Jäätteenmäki, was accused for exposing national security documents and therefore endangering the national safety – based in monolithic laws from the peak of the cold war - and gradually she was led to a resignation and the court rooms that months after found her not guilty coasting her though her political career and perhaps Finland’s hope for a radical change. And it was a huge cover up because even though the case was covered daily from all the media and the Prime minister’s resignation attracted a lot of publicity nobody still asked what Lipponen had agreed with George W. Bush. And amazingly all these happened in the country that champions internationally transparency!

According to the latest reports, the Finnish chapter of the human rights organization Amnesty International believes it has uncovered evidence of more secret CIA flights carrying terror suspects travelling through Finland. In addition to earlier claims concerning three flights, Amnesty now says it suspects there were more than 10 between 2001 and 2006. Amnesty has drawn on a number of public sources in reaching the conclusion that the CIA may have carried out secret rendition flights via Finland from Kabul in 2005 and to Uzbekistan in 2002. A recent Amnesty report into secret CIA detention facilities in Lithuania says that a Boeing 707 was spotted on the runway at Helsinki Vantaa airport in 2004 that it was linked to the Lithuania detention centre.

Perhaps this report from Amnesty International will become the excuse not only to expose a series of illegal moves and acts from CIA but what really happened in Finland at 2003 and I’m sure that history will vindicate Anneli Jäätteenmäki but it would be good if she was also justified in the eyes of her contemporaries and the ones who voted for her not expecting to get Vanhanen and Kiviniemi in her place.

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