Thursday, December 18, 2003

Bush busily wiring up a show trial for Saddam 

Michael Moran of MSNBC writes:

“There is no way anything that transpires with Saddam will ever be described as a plea agreement,” a U.S. official says, requesting anonymity. “There are ways to make sure a death penalty isn’t imposed, though. I don’t think it will come to that, but if the information is there, there is nothing stopping it”


Two days ago, we were going to have a trial for Saddam that would "withstand international scrutiny."

Yesterday, Bush gave in to his blood lust and said he wanted Saddam dead.

Today, anonymous US officials take plea bargaining off the table, and talk about the inner workings of the trial as if, well, they were in charge ...

What's so tragic and stupid about all of this, and so indicative of Thug behavior generally, is that an actual judicial proceeding, as at the Hague, would be:

  • better for Iraqis, who need to see a system of justice at work where the results aren't pre-ordained by their ruler (now Bush)

  • better for the Arab would, who would see the rule of law in action (not that Bush gives the rule of law anything other than lip service)

  • better for us, since if the Iraqis ended up condemning Saddam themselves, in an open and transparent judicial forum, the bunker-less and Democratic citizens of our great cities would be far less likely to be the target for revenge killings....

You'd almost think Bush wanted chaos to continue, wouldn't you?

Meanwhile, building the case is expected to take a long time. I'd say Fine! if I had confidence that the Iraqis were really running the show, but as it is I'm imagining Saddam "finally breaking down" and revealing WMD information on, say, November 9, 2004, with enough time to break the story but not enough time for it to be investigated ....

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