When they found him in the bolt-hole they should have put a bullet in his head and buried him in the desert. There would be no pretense of lawful conduct, there would be a plea of extraordinary circumstances in a time of war. Be done with it, move on.
Instead they handed him to a poorly trained court. They allowed his lawyers to be assassinated one after the other. They charged him with international crimes while dangling a breach of international law over his head (and around his neck).
The self-styled hero of the Arabs was able to style himself a martyr, slain by the new administration that itself indulges in torture and extra-judicial killing. Thousands of idiot would-be terrorists, young, angry, open to suggestion, are given additional inspiration.
We kill him, Israel builds a new settlement. There is no progress towards peace.
Our inconsistency and hypocrisy are so brazen, so flagrant, that any hope those young angry men might consider peaceful campaigns based on human rights and the rule of international law is jettisoned.
Because we're going to get loud and righteous when those brats who tried to smuggle heroin are lined up for the same penalty. Death penalty is wrong, we'll say, belatedly adding "for this crime, which we don't think is so serious". Not for crimes where we endorse it.
Do as we say, not as we do.
UPDATE: His hangmen, Shiites, got to taunt him as they killed him. Just like Abu Ghraib but with gallows.
More than anything it brings to mind the scenes of Somalis dragging the bodies of Rangers through the streets of Mogadishu. There isn't a sniff of law or justice about it.
A tribute to Fred Gruen - A few weeks ago, I gave the FH Gruen lecture, on the topic After reform: the economic policy agenda in the 21st century. Thanks to sound editor Simon Kravi...
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