An Italian judge took the bull by the horns on Wednesday when he convicted the CIA station chief and 22 other CIA folks in the case of the kidnapping of a Muslim cleric in Milan in 2003. All the Americans were tried in absentia and are now considered fugitives. The case becomes a huge symbolic victory for Italian prosecutors in this first conviction over “rendition” – the American policy of capturing terrorism suspects in one country and then taking them to another for “aggressive” interrogations. Although the case is steeped in symbolism, it’s unlikely to have any real, practical effect. It seems highly unlikely anyone will actually spend any time in the pokey. There were no convictions of Italians also charged in the case. Not surprisingly, the State Department said it was disappointed by the verdict, but it is quite likely to be appealed. Read more: New York Times
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