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The Metaphysics of Jailbreaks

July 28th, 2013 - 7:08 pm

In the mid-seventies, when I was reporting from Rome for The New Republic, jailbreaks were commonplace.  Red Brigades terrorists and other such broke out of prisons throughout the country, and one day I got a telephone call from Washington.  An irritated colleague asked, “Can’t the Italians keep anyone in jail?”  My answer was fairly blunt.  “Suppose you’re a prison guard,” I said, “you’re making barely enough to scrape by, month by month.  Then somebody calls you late at night.  The message is brutal.  ’Stay away from cell block B Thursday after 11 o’clock.  We’ll pay you ten thousand dollars and we won’t kill your daughter.’”

What would you do?  Stupid rhetorical question, I know, but nobody had posed it to my colleague, who was anything but stupid and was very well educated.  It’s just that very few deep thinkers are familiar with the dark side.  When you find one–Eric Hoffer, for example, or Alexander Solzhenitsyn, for another–it is worth your while to pay close attention.

These thoughts are prompted by the two recent dreadful jailbreaks in Libya and Iraq, both of which are very serious and infuriating.  Some of those evil people in Abu Ghraib were transported there by Marine convoys that covered many miles of very dangerous territory (IEDs abounded), so that “the rule of law” could be established under American guidance.  Some of those convoys were commanded by people very close to us.  So the family takes it very seriously.  Would that our commander in chief were serious, and that American guidance had continued.  But no, he was in a hurry to get out, and this is one of the consequences.

I’m not suggesting that all, or even most, of the guards at Abu Ghraib or Benghazi were complicit in the two massive breakouts in recent days.  In both cases, police and security forces were killed; they weren’t conveniently elsewhere.  But jailbreaks, especially when high-profile prisoners are involved, are not spontaneous happenings.  They are planned, and you can be sure that the planners had managed to enlist the support of some of the men in charge.  “I’ll pay you ten thousand dollars and we won’t kill your daughter” works most every time.

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Top Rated Comments   
Those who escaped were not dangerous TeaParty extremists,nor Christians.
So, all is well.

Oh, and you forgot the LEGAL jailbreaks...Israel is now freeing terrorists to have the privilege to sit down and discuss about "peace" with... the terrorists' commanders.



1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
It makes you think. Jails are expensive and corruptible, bullets cheap and final. That Swiss story is instructive. We pretend to jail them and they pretend to break them out. Kind of like the relationship between Wall St. and DC, or our two political parties.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (13)
All Comments   (13)
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Why is this jailbreak being regarded as a setback for the United States? Iraq is no longer an American responsibility. Obama made sure of that! If anything, this jailbreak is a strategic blow against Iran, given that Iraq is now a satellite of Iran.

The fact is, events in the Middle East are out of America's control. Not only is there nothing we can do about the jailbreak in Iraq, there is nothing we should do about the jailbreak in Iraq. The people who are going to suffer the most from these escaped prisoners will be the very supporters of Moqtada as-Sadr and Muntazar al-Zaydi who wanted American troops out. They made their bed; they can lie in it.

I would like to think that the United States could stop Iranian provocations. Under a different president, that might be possible. Under this president, it is not possible. I doubt that Obama is even interested in stopping Iran's nuclear ambitions; I think he only makes noises against it to straitjacket Israel and keep it from doing anything to even slow down Iran. It would be easier to imagine pigs flapping their wings in the air than Obama effectively stopping Iran's nuclear weapons program.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The issue with Iraqi and Pakistani prisons is the very quality of the infrastructure.

The players being detained justify Pelican Bay style containment.

The actual facilities -- per the photos -- are really suitable for petty thieves and town drunks.

1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Where was Obama? Why isn't he insuring that jails in Libya, Syria, or Switzerland are secure? Just another Obama failure.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
There is one very easy way to make sure there are no further jail breaks. Take no prisoners in the first place. A dead jihadist can't escape.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All well and good subject on the threats we face . I have just been reading the history of the Rhine river:"The Romans viewed the Rhine as the outermost border of civilization and reason, beyond which were mythical creatures and wild Germanic tribesmen, not far themselves from being beasts of the wilderness they inhabited."
the Problem I believe is this Rhine river today runs out from Wall Street with all the Wild beast ghosts sailing on it being given flesh bodies to rip the world to pieces making humans their slaves and only the coming of Constantine wisdom to unite the three Abraham faiths can the world withstand this demonic attack on our world first by a return to Christian inUSA
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
footnote
Tear out the Christian root from this nation they do this by their actions because they believe this is a dog eat dog world and the little things that stand in their way crush under their feet .Few boats will be left to lift But they bath in great Nephilm glory of winner they believe in the graveyard of all the losers
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Ya know, way, way, way back in history most crimes were punishable by death. Cruel and unusual the death penalty.

Transportation was a good idea. I hear Picairn Island is still empty. Or the Gobi.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Dr. Ledeen, thank you.

What leaves me wondering is, what must the background of your intelligent cohort be that would require you to school them in tactics of which an eighth grader would be expert?

No wonder we keep getting rolled.

1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
my cohort went to the best schools, and grew up in the best neighborhoods. most of them were never forced to defend themselves either on the school bus or on the streets. most of them have never seen an act of violence except on tv or the movie house...nor seen the inside of a prison...it's all kind of metaphysical for them.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
So, you 'went to different schools together!' I thought as much. You bring so much to the table. Stay well!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Those who escaped were not dangerous TeaParty extremists,nor Christians.
So, all is well.

Oh, and you forgot the LEGAL jailbreaks...Israel is now freeing terrorists to have the privilege to sit down and discuss about "peace" with... the terrorists' commanders.



1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Of course there are always those who help from the inside, even though many others toil under extremely grave & perilous circumstances. But it is also the case that so MANY outrages occur under the reign of 'The One', one must wonder why this is so.
So when the fish stinks from the head up - via the Commander-in-Chief - the chances of it happening are exponentially higher. Besides, how much disdain has he shown for the military which helps guard these high value prisoners - http://adinakutnicki.com/2012/12/10/another-bullseye-painted-on-the-backs-of-u-s-military-vets-addendum-to-the-hunt-against-vets-commentary-by-adina-kutnicki/
As a result, those who 'spontaneously' break out under the command of U.S. contractors, well, it shouldn't be unexpected.

Adina Kutnicki, Israel http://adinakutnicki.com/about/
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
It makes you think. Jails are expensive and corruptible, bullets cheap and final. That Swiss story is instructive. We pretend to jail them and they pretend to break them out. Kind of like the relationship between Wall St. and DC, or our two political parties.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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