Donald Sensing is entirely correct in writing:

I'll add a thought that I have not seen anywhere. In all the discussions about how Saddam's trial must be fair and the outcome just, surely I am not the only one who thinks that justice cannot be served by any verdict except guilty.

Saddam must be found guilty and there must not be any possibility of finding otherwise. Yes, I know this sounds repulsive to tradtional American virtues of law and courts. But Saddam's case is truly unique. before you hastily rush to comment, stop and really think through what a "not guilty" verdict would mean, and what it would engender.

Saddam's guilt is absolutely unquestionable, and the verdict, to be just, must be foregone from the beginning. So reaching a verdict is not the real issue of the trial. Fully exposing Saddam's deeds to the Iraqi people and the world is the point. Enabling the Iraqi people to face their horrors so they may grow out of them is the point. Discovering the truth of Saddam's ties to nations and international agencies that propped him up is the point.

The trick, though, is in getting Saddam to give us the information we want, and it's hard to imagine him spilling all the beans if he knows there's a guaranteed noose after the 20 questions, no matter what. Part of the trial will revolve around all sorts of "international law" issues that won't add up to much, and the rest will be bargaining between the Iraqis (and the CPA) and Saddam over how much info he'll give them.

I expect he'll be forced -- through mild forms of torture -- to incriminate himself, and his captors will probably hang the life-in-prison carrot in front of him the whole way to give him some incentive to cooperate. I don't think the CPA will let the Iraqis use hard-core torture techniques, and I don't think the Iraqis will let him escape execution (not that the CPA would want him to).



Email blogmasterofnoneATgmailDOTcom for text link and key word rates.

Site Info