Clayton Hallmark | 05.11.2005 01:53 | Anti-militarism
News media reported Thursday that the group Human Rights Watch "claims records and other evidence point to POLAND and ROMANIA as countries that allowed their territory to be used by the CIA to hold top suspected al-Qaeda captives." We report that HRW knows that from tracing the movements of CIA planes and we provide a list of the planes.
The CIA's Planes/The CIA's Companies
IF YOU DO NOT SEE THE GRAPHIC (table), this site must not support graphics. To see it, go to http://argentina.indymedia.org/news/2005/11/344136.php .
The HRW report clarifies earlier reports http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/11/03/AR2005110301732.html in the mainstream media that declined to reveal which countries.
How does Human Rights Watch know? Planespotters, that's how. The aviation enthusiasts follow the travels of planes, take photos, and post the photos and locations to websites like http://www.Airliners.net , http://www.Planespotters.net , http://www.JetPhotos.Net and http://www.Jetspotter.com .
A Boeing 737 "leased" by the CIA to transport prisoners departed from Kabul, Afghanistan, and made stops at remote airfields in POLAND and ROMANIA before continuing on to Morocco and then to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, according to HRW. So POLAND and ROMANIA are two of the several Eastern European countries earlier reports only alluded to. We can be sure that planespotters soon will identify the rest.
The accompanying table shows the CIA shell companies and the planes they own, including the 737, which has the FAA-assigned tail number (N-number for US planes) N4476S. At least three of the planes, marked with asterisks, are used for "rendition" (kidnap-torture) flights.
HOW THE CIA'S AIRLINE WORKS
The plane is not really leased by the CIA. It is owned by a CIA shell company, Keeler and Tate Management, LLC. Like other CIA shell companies, it has no employees, no business premises, and no website. In lieu of these, it has a CIA-contracted lawyer who provides a mail drop, registers the company with the state and the planes with the FAA, and interfaces in other necessary ways with government agencies and the public. The lawyer provides many of the legal services needed by a normal company, including a place to serve legal papers and court documents on the company.
The address of Keeler and Tate is 245 E. Liberty St., Suite 510, Reno, Nevada 89501 (Washoe county). The corporation information provided to the Nevada secretary of state lists the resident agent as Steven F. Petersen, an attorney whose address is the same as Keeler and Tate's.
The only company officer listed is Tyler Edward Tate of the same address. Some newspapers have tried to track down CIA shell company directors and have found that they almost always are fictitious persons, and once in a while figureheads -- patriotic persons who lend their name in the name of patriotism. Tracing the officers of the shell companies is a futile exercise. Basically, the only real people working for the shell companies are the private attorneys.
The address of Keeler and Tate and of the lawyer Petersen is shared by Lexalt Group West, the law firm of Paul D. Laxalt and Peter D. Laxalt. Paul D. Lexalt is a former Republican senator from Nevada. His law firm specializes in "political public relations services." So does Petersen's.
Laxalt, the former US senator whose address and phone number are used by the owners of the CIA's 737 prison plane, was a close friend of Republican icon Ronald Reagan. When Reagan was president, Laxalt was referred to as the "First Friend."