After communism and capitalism, there is asterism.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Saddam and Bush's Moral Equivalence

From Stirling Newberry at BOPnews:
When presented with proof that Saddam ordered a show trial of 148 people - including children - who were alledged to be involved with an assassination attempt, he said he was head of state, and had the power to refer them to a court, and that the court had the right to convict them under the law, and sentence them. When given proof that their land was razed, he said that the decree was legally passed for "national security reasons", and that compensation was paid. When given a list of the people trucked to a desert prison, he stated that they had been legally sentenced for their involvement.

While the court against Saddam is trying to hit home that 10 of the people sentenced to death were under the age of 18 - one as young as 11 - the moral force of this is almost nothing. The United States ships people to be tortured. The United States detains people without legal evidence, without a means to prove innocence, and without access to trial. The United States executes jeuveniles and mentally incompetent individuals.
Sometimes it takes an American to tell Iraqis the blindingly obvious. America has no moral authority to judge Saddam. It is not that Saddam is not a criminal - the point is that he must be judged by an Iraqi controlled court according to Iraqi moral standards and not American ones. And before you show moral outrage at Iraqi state crimes take a look at your own countries first.


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