Wednesday, 15 February 2006

Saddam not eating

TIMES ONLINE: Saddam Hussein today claimed that he and three of his seven co-defendants were on hunger strike...

Great. I hope he dies of it. As Elan Journo argued a week or so back, "By granting Hussein a trial, justice is perverted."

While you're waiting for him to starve himself to death, perhaps you might like to make fun of the murdering arsehole by playing 'Rock, Paper, Saddam' again -- now, with a sequel, 'The Picture'!

Reading 'Interior Decorating for Dictators'

Times Online has these thoughts:
THE trial of Saddam Hussein has become a farce. If its faults are not quickly cured, it should be removed from Iraq and held somewhere else. The best thing that can be said about it is that it has avoided the worst faults of the trial of Slobodan Milosevic, the former Yugoslav President, which is now entering its fifth (and probably final) year. Yet the Milosevic trial is still the better model. It can at least be defended as fair. Saddam’s claim that he is being tried unfairly looks more justified by the day. Of course, there is an argument that trials of dictators should not be held at all... But the alternatives are to free these people — or shoot them immediately.
LINKS: Saddam 'hunger strike' claim - Times Online
The injustice of Saddam's trial - CapMag
'Rock, Paper, Saddam' with sequel: 'The Painting'
- Jib Jab


  1. What are you going to say next?

    A criminal trial is supposed to be a scientific test of guilt or innocence. That's law, rather than mere contingent judgement.

    If you're willing to dispense with the objective test of guilt here, why not elsewhere? Hells bells! It isn't as if the difficulty of proving Saddam's guilt is bloody rocket science. You want to go around woppin' people's blocks off in the name of justice without the law?

    I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!

  2. Read the argument, Rick. Read the argument. "Why not elsewhere?" Just read it, Rick.

  3. I did too read it. All I see is...

    "The Bush administration, after all, determined that Hussein was so vicious that..."

    Sounds like a street gang to me, only with the best Situation Room taxpayer money can buy. Not good enough! One day an administration like that might rock up to your place- are we cool with that?

    No, I don't see your side of this outrage. Who are you and what have you done with the real PC?

  4. If that's 'all you see,' then on 'Reading Comprehension' you score a 'Not Achieved.'

  5. I'm sure Thomas More and others would be humbled to know what has escaped their attention here, as would I. If you please?

  6. Saddam Hussein led a murderous regime - he was personally responsible for its existence, perpetuity and the murders - this is without a shadow of a doubt.

    He is not a private citizen - he was above all that. Unlike private citizens who murder with umpteen witnesses, he was not subject to law when he governed - he was the law.

    There is no defence on lack of actus reus, he was responsible. There is no defence of lack of mens rea, he knew what he was doing. There is no defence that he was carrying out orders - he gave them.

    Holding a trial for him is about as sensible as holding a trial for Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini or Ceausescu - they ARE different - they WERE the law.

    They are entitled to no protection, whatsoever. At best this should be a summary trial outlining his crimes, with a process of discovery that IS cross examined, so that the history of Iraq can be put straight - but he should be shot.

    Anybody beneath Saddam should have a trial, to clear the facts, but he is ultimately responsible.

  7. I'm really disapointed in you guys.

    Man's judgement is not automatically right, so we're in a fix. The solution is to base our judgement entirely on all the factual evidence pertaining to the case. You're entitled to your opinion, but it is not your job to pass the sentence! Not if you are the President himself.

    "Saddam Hussein led a murderous regime...this is without a shadow of a doubt."

    Good then, his trial ought to be quick and decisive.

    "He is not a private citizen"

    Is Her Excellency Dame Silvia Cartwright is "above the law" too? Or is it just Arabs? No she isn't, and neither is Hussein, and neither is "the Devil himself."

    "...about as sensible as holding a trial for Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini.."

    They were only men.

    "They are entitled to no protection, whatsoever."

    Thomas More wants me to tell you that it's not about protecting them, it's about protecting all of us.

    Question: If Libertarianz become majority government after the next election will you deal with those you supplant by killing them or by putting them on trial or by letting them go scot free?

    After what you've both just said I guess we've already been told.

  8. I think this is what's known as being 'intemperate': "Question: If Libertarianz become majority government after the next election will you deal with those you supplant by killing them or by putting them on trial or by letting them go scot free? After what you've both just said I guess we've already been told.

    Or perhaps I have the wrong 'i' word? It barely merits a polite response at all.

    However, perhaps I can point you again to the argument, which it seems you still haven't read:

    "...this trial, the epitome of injustice, is defended as paving the way for a truly just legal system. Proponents argue that, whatever one thinks of the specifics of the trial, it marks the transformation of Iraq's judiciary from courts subservient to a dictator's whims, to courts objectively determining guilt or innocence. But the trial does no such thing.

    "Though there are plenty of American judges with decades of experience under a proper legal system--and few, if any Iraqis with comparable experience--American participation was viewed as unacceptable. Why were only members of Hussein's ethnic tribe deemed fit to judge him?

    "Because justice, on the premise of the trial, is determined by the tribe; the tribe alone is the ultimate arbiter of right and wrong, good and evil, innocence and guilt. On this view, a meticulously logical assessment of universally available facts has no bearing on justice. Whatever the tribal group feels is just--regardless of evidence or logic--is just. A trial conducted on this premise is a repudiation of justice as an objective principle.

    "The trial is not, in essence, a departure from the subjective courts of the former regime. Instead of Hussein capriciously prescribing a "just" verdict, that arbitrary power now belongs to the Iraqi tribe--or any sub-tribe (whether Sunni, Shiite, Kurd) that wrests control of the courts."

    The trial is fast becoming a shambles, moving swiftly into farce. This is not justice, it is injustice to those Saddam, gassed, butchered, tortured and had buried in mass-graves.

    And it's not Thomas More you're quoting, it's Robert Bolt, and you don't need to go beyond this site to find his words. (More himself, as I'm sure you're aware, was in favour of dictatorship.) But observe something else you've overlooked from that passage:

    "Alice: While you talk, he's gone!

    More: And go he should, if he was the Devil himself, until he broke the law!"

    As Scott says above, Saddam broke no law -- he was the law. There was no protection of the law under Sadda, except for Saddam -- his regime shows us what happens when the laws are all flat, and the winds of evil blow through. To suggest he be tried under his 'law' would be egregiously wrong. And it would seem from the present shambles that present law does not offer any more hope.

  9. Okay. I'm cool with that.

    I think this is what's known as being 'intemperate': "Question: deal with those you supplant by killing them or by putting them on trial or...

    That, to ME at least, was a PRACTICAL question.

    So you both are, at it turns out, on the side of Lord Denning and Hollywood More after all? It's rule of man you're out to get and not the rule of law.
    Elan Journo, however, clearly doesn't think there needs to be any law or any trial- except perhaps a show trial.

    Of course it's law I'm talking about, not Saddam's "law" or the pajama party "trial."

    More himself, as I'm sure you're aware, was in favour of dictatorship.

    It's a hard road finding the perfect martyr, bud. But he had some good ideas about chicken incubators!


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