By Steve Hendricks
Presents a close account of the occasions surrounding the abduction of Abu Omar, a thorough Muslim chief, in Milan, Italy, and then he was once despatched to be tortured in Egypt, and examines efforts of Italian investigators and the CIA's position within the events.
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Additional resources for A kidnapping in Milan : the CIA on trial
Merit mattered, but merit was rarely enough, and it helped to have a patron or friend on the inside. As it happened, Ludwig had a well-placed friend, an American named Bob, who was highly regarded by the director of SISMI’s Milan office and who was also known, favorably it seemed, at SISMI’s headquarters in Rome. Bob could expect that any recommendation he made would be looked on with respect. He was a spy. It also happened that Bob needed a favor, the subject of which he first raised with Ludwig, glancingly, in August of 2002, five months before Ludwig came to the cold bench in Piazza Dergano.
As they had not intended, Egyptian opinion turned on them for good. What little popular support Gamaa had retained through the years of bombings and murder evaporated, and terrorism as a political solution was thoroughly discredited. In 2003 another set of imprisoned Gamaa leaders would be persuaded to renounce violence, and Mubarak, for the moment at least, could claim to have won the fight against terrorism. But for an Egyptian set on violence, there were other places to practice it. THE ALEXANDRIA to which Osama Mustafa Hassan Nasr was born in 1963 was in some respects unrecognizable even from the Alexandria of nine years earlier, when the attempt on President Nasser was made there.
The Arabs only accelerated the decline, principally by moving the capital to Cairo. The denouement continued for a millenium, and when Napoleon intruded into Egypt briefly in 1798, staying no longer than a Romantic poet on holiday, he found Alexander’s mighty port a negligible fishing village. Alexandria, like all Egypt, dates its encounter with modernity to the Ottoman invasion of 1801 and particularly to the rule of the first Ottoman pasha in Egypt, Muhammad Ali. The pasha’s power knew few limits.
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