Sunday Times (London): America has told Britain that it can “kidnap” British citizens if they are wanted for crimes in the United States (via Digby).

This is with the U-fucking-K, indomitable partners in the war for keeping the country terrorized and second contributor to troops in Iraq. Is there any nation right now whose sovereignty the Bush Administration would feel more hesitant to completely disregard? How much contempt for international law do these guys have to fucking openly say “Screw you guys, if you don’t hand over whoever I tell you to, I’ll just go ahead and kidnap him/her. Hell, I’m not even sure I’ll even bother asking”.

The kicker? This wasn’t even brought up because of some scary arab dude whose smack talking to friends was intercepted and interpreted as a cunning, well organized plot to destroy the land of the free once and for all. This was brought up because of tax evasion.

The US government’s view emerged during a hearing involving Stanley Tollman, a former director of Chelsea football club and a friend of Baroness Thatcher, and his wife Beatrice. The Tollmans, who control the Red Carnation hotel group and are resident in London, are wanted in America for bank fraud and tax evasion. They have been fighting extradition through the British courts.

During a hearing last month Lord Justice Moses, one of the Court of Appeal judges, asked Alun Jones QC, representing the US government, about its treatment of Gavin, Tollman’s nephew. Gavin Tollman was the subject of an attempted abduction during a visit to Canada in 2005. Jones replied that it was acceptable under American law to kidnap people if they were wanted for offences in America. “The United States does have a view about procuring people to its own shores which is not shared,” he said.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not naive enough to believe countries never kidnap people abroad for all kinds of reasons. But it’s done secretly, and will be denied ad nauseam until there’s hard evidence to show. And then that nation will be publicly shamed and accused of interventionism and not respecting the rule of law, etc. A fucking established democracy that goes around “spreading freedom” doesn’t state publicly “Oh yeah, it’s our interpretation of the law that we can go in any country we want and do as we please. Now watch this drive!”

I’m too tired of this shit to summon the dutch kid or Grand Master Yoda. Go Cheney your whogivesashitaboutstateoflaw-selves, White House!