Monday, December 15, 2003

We Got Him (With A Little Help From Our Friends)

The Saddam thing is still bouncing around every TV station, radio programme and website on the globe. Its interesting cruising the various Western, Arab and far-flung sites to see what their take is on the capture and its repercussions. Apparently the Palestinians are pretty pissed off about the whole thing and cannot believe that someone who they respected as a fighter was caught without a shot being fired. For the US its the best possible outcome, although there are complaints already of how, as a prisoner of war, Saddam shouldn't have been paraded in front of TV cameras, not least while he was having a medical examination. Personally, I'm not sure what rights he deserves after the way he's treated people over the years, but in a democracy fundamental rights cannot be removed, no matter how much of a greaseball the guy is.

I can see all sorts of things hitting the fan when he goes on trial, too. Will he be tried by an Iraqi court, or an International Tribunal? From what I can tell, Iraq has no death penalty, so they'll have to reintroduce it pretty damn fast if they want to use it on Saddam. If its an International Tribunal, we're going to get countries who do not support the death penalty (out of principle) not accepting a verdict of death, plus the usual Arab nations who do have capital punishment disagreeing anyway because Saddam is a Muslim/Arab. One Arab commentator yesterday was saying that Milosovic went on trial in the Hague rather than in Serbia because he was white/Christian and that if Saddam is treated any differently then it'll because of his Arab/Muslim-ness. And of course should Saddam be executed he will instantly turn from a humiliated tyrant into a martyr, which is all we need. What a strange religion Islam is where no matter how horrible you are, fellow Muslims will always support you. I must be missing something somewhere.

No comments: