Americans have mostly shrugged off recent allegations that the CIA is interrogating terror suspects in secret prisons in Eastern Europe and elsewhere. Not so the Europeans, whose demand for answers is part of why Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is meeting Tuesday with new German Prime Minister Angela Merkel. Europeans aren’t just upset at the existence of the prisons in retooled Soviet-era facilities and their reported interrogation techniques. They’re upset about the use of their airspace at all, including for what Spiegel Online counted as 437 flights since 2001. Rice can’t say much about any of it, other than to stress, as she did Monday, that the United States doesn’t transport suspects “for the purpose of interrogation using torture.” But Rice’s diplomatic skills will be tested on this trip, which underscores how the Bush White House’s credibility on prewar intelligence now goes to its credibility on many other international issues.
Posted by Rhonda Holman
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