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... Whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends,
it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it,
and to institute new Government ...

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Saddam is Still Dead

In today’s New York Times the editors continue to anguish over the execution of Saddam. The Times is joined by Chris Hitchens. Let’s skip all the usual refutations of this superfluous and dissolute hand-wringing; Saddam’s treatment after his capture does deserve criticism but of a totally different kind.

Saddam never surrendered, never issued orders to surrender to his fighters, never signed surrender documents, and continued to claim he was commander-in-chief of Iraq. He claimed he was illegally detained, illegally held, and illegally tried. He continually postured as a victim while rallying his fighters to the cause.

Saddam should never have been tried – he should have been summarily shot for refusing to surrender and refusing to issue orders to his fighters to surrender. For the Sunni factions backing Saddam the war was never over. One does not hold trials during a war; one kills one’s opponents unless they surrender. Saddam remained the leader of insurgent Sunni fighters until the moment he died.

The trial was ill advised. It turned into an “O.J.” circus giving Saddam a platform to posture and re-establish his popularity among the faithful. His pathetic capture and dejected sulking gave way to a defiant and, in the minds of his supporter, heroic fighter. He never earned the dignity of a trial. Only his surrender and his call to his fighters to do the same would have earned him that dignity.
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posted by Jason Pappas at permanent link#


Blogger Captain USpace said...

absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
admire brutal dictators

absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
mourn evil tyrants

absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
dictators should kill more

Thursday, January 04, 2007 6:59:00 pm  
Blogger Pastorius said...

Here here. Well said, my friend.

Thursday, January 04, 2007 7:26:00 pm  
Blogger Jason Pappas said...

Thanks Pastorius. After I wrote the above I recalled that the Japanese war lords had surrendered, stopped their troops from fighting, and signed documents of surrender. Remember the pictures with McArthur? Let’s also remember that the Emperor asked his people to give up the fight. It was after the surrender that trials were held.

Thursday, January 04, 2007 7:38:00 pm  
Blogger Demosthenes said...

Saddam's execution is an excellent example of why executions should be private events. By making them public, you permit the excessively punitive to publicly rejoice which leads society down a bad path, you give death penalty opponents a powerful argument in the behavior of the excessively punitive, and finally you increase the chance of the perception of martyrdom as with Saddam. It's even true here in the United States. Can anyone reading this stomach the idea of Saint Mumia? A public execution would guarantee it.

Thursday, January 04, 2007 8:04:00 pm  
Blogger Jason Pappas said...

David Horowitz goes further. And I thought I was tough!

Thursday, January 04, 2007 10:22:00 pm  

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