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The Torture Career of Egypt's New Vice President: Omar Suleiman and the Rendition to Torture Program

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An editorialist at Pakistan's "International News" predicted Thursday that "Suleiman will probably scupper his boss's plans [to install his son], even if the aspiring intelligence guru himself is as young as 75."

Suleiman graduated from Egypt's prestigious Military Academy but also received training in the Soviet Union. Under his guidance, Egyptian intelligence has worked hand-in-glove with the CIA's counterterrorism programs, most notably in the 2003 rendition from Italy of an al-Qaeda suspect known as Abu Omar.

In 2009, Foreign Policy magazine ranked Suleiman as the Middle East's most powerful intelligence chief, ahead of Mossad chief Meir Dagan.

In an observation that may turn out to be ironic, the magazine wrote, "More than from any other single factor, Suleiman's influence stems from his unswerving loyalty to Mubarak."

If Suleiman succeeds Mubarak and retains power, we will likely be treated to plaudits for his distinguished credentials from government officials and US pundits.  We should remember that what they really mean is his ability to brutalize and torture. As Stephen Grey puts it:

But in secret, men like Omar Suleiman, the country's most powerful spy and secret politician, did our work, the sort of work that Western countries have no appetite to do ourselves.

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If Suleiman receives praise in the US, it will be because our leaders know that he's the sort of leader who can be counted on to do what it takes to restore order and ensure that Egypt remains friendly to US interests.

There are some signs, however, that the Obama administration may not accept Suleiman's appointment. Today they criticized the rearrangement of the chairs in Egypt's government. If so, that will be a welcome sign that the Obama administration may have some limits beyond which it is hesitant to go in aligning with our most brutal "friends."

We sure hope that the Egyptian demonstrators reject the farce of Suleiman's appointment and push on to a complete change of regime. Otherwise the Egyptian torture chamber will undoubtedly return, as a new regime reestablishes "stability" and serves US interests.

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Stephen Soldz is psychoanalyst, psychologist, public health researcher, and faculty member at the Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis. He is co-founder of the Coalition for an Ethical Psychology and is President of Psychologists for Social Responsibility. He was a psychological consultant on two of (more...)
 

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Michael Moore has a prize for anyone in the MSM wh... by Virginia Simson on Saturday, Jan 29, 2011 at 8:09:27 PM
... by Stephen Soldz on Saturday, Jan 29, 2011 at 8:20:55 PM
We are all Khalid Said, someone commented that CNN... by Virginia Simson on Saturday, Jan 29, 2011 at 9:25:51 PM
Why should we be shocked at this when the US does ... by Progessive 1 on Sunday, Jan 30, 2011 at 6:07:51 AM
thanks for this very good article.... by Wendy Culpepper on Sunday, Jan 30, 2011 at 7:45:05 AM
I hope that this article will soon be irrelevant, ... by Stephen Soldz on Sunday, Jan 30, 2011 at 8:18:05 AM
but ...if you get the tone of the videos coming ou... by Virginia Simson on Sunday, Jan 30, 2011 at 9:40:26 AM
loved guys like this, people with no morals, no et... by Archie on Sunday, Jan 30, 2011 at 6:22:54 PM