I hadn’t even originally planned on doing a blog entry this week, but I can’t pass up a chance like this:
Timeline on Jonathan “call me Jack” Idema:
July 9: Idema claims he’s the inspiration behind George Clooney’s Role in Peacemaker
July 23: Idema’s lawyer claims to have video proof he was working with the US. This is at first questioned, but later US Military spokesman Major Jon Siepmann admits that they did indeed receive prisoners from Idema’s group. They claim this was an isolated incident and they had no idea of anything else he was doing.
July 27: Knight-Ridder releases a story about Jack Idema’s career as a part-time journalist.
August 6: Idema’s dubious history is discussed in the article.
August 11: Idema’s lawyer complains that he can’t get a fair trial in Afghanistan.
August 16: Idema’s trial is delayed for a week when he claims the FBI is withholding evidence that could prove his innocence. The FBI agrees to hand over the huge collection of files relating to Idema and his group.
August 23: After a week, Idema complains that he hasn’t been given access to everything, and that the documents would prove he was working for the US Army. The defense shows video of Afghanistan’s former Education Minister congratulating Idema and his group for capturing “terrorists” and promises to help them continue their work. One of Idema’s cohorts, Mr. Caraballo enters the courtroom with a crutch, and badly bruised feet. The prosecution claims he “slipped”.
August 24: The US investigates the treatment of Idema’s men while in custody, and decides that it was acceptable.
August 25: The US once again denies any contact with Idema outside the single incident with the prisoners reported on July 23. They claim Idema had delusions of grandeur, and that any contact he claimed was entirely in his head.
August 26: The Department of Defense, after over a month of denials, finally admits that they were in contact with Idema, and that Acting Director of Security Heather Anderson had telephoned him.
This obviously isn’t over, but at the month and a half mark, I thought it would be a good time to review. I don’t know if the Pentagon is in contact with a lot of would-be A-Teams, but how could it take them nearly two months between the time of the initial arrest and the time where they finally remembered “oh yeah, we called him?”
And at any rate, why lie (multiple times at that) about it? The story barely registers on the mainstream American press’ radar. The average American barely cares about the vast amount of torture the US military has performed itself… surely the whole truth about Jack Idema can’t be that serious a threat.