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The Paranoid Android
...musings of a mechanically depressed robot...
Saddam to hang...
Saddam's list of crimes are quite impressive.  He was accused (and convicted) of ordering the slaughter of several hundred thousand of Iraqi nationals. He was also accused (and convicted) of large scale environmental damage.  For this he will swing.

Between American and Britain we have killed far more Iraqi nationals, and I would be surprised if our combined effect on the environment hasn't caused more damage than burning oil fields for months and destroying marshland.  Calling the dead Iraqis (and our troops) causalities of war supposes that the war was legal - something I have yet to see proof of.

So who in the British and American administrations are going to swing with him?

Just what will we accomplish by hanging this man that we can't from a life in prison?  what gives "us" the right to kill another - no matter what their crimes? are we not by definition murderers by killing him?

Current Location: EC2Y 9AQ
Current Mood: pissed off pissed off
Current Music: Latin Quarter - America for Beginners

23 comments or Leave a comment
laaalaaa From: laaalaaa Date: November 7th, 2006 03:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Maybe i'm being blonde.. but I don't understand how something such as 'war' can be legal? I admit, i'm not as up on the world as I should be, mainly because I avoid the news as it makes me depressed, but I do feel.. if he wasn't to hang, that they should find the worst jail in the world, no luxuries.. bread & water to eat/drink and sunshine if you're really lucky and stick him in there. Also think our jails should stop making our criminals live like kings, as many of them do.

They're kicking up a stink down here at the moment as the government wants to change an ex forces base into an open prison. I don't have a problem with that, all resources should be used, but I do hope they are careful as to which criminals are placed there. Floating jails are also a good idea, albeit a blot on the horizon! If we're lucky it will spring a leak and do the world a favour! :D
paranoidandroid From: paranoidandroid Date: November 9th, 2006 01:35 am (UTC) (Link)
You are very blonde! ;)

The victor makes the laws - so the winner of a war is always legally right! :)

I think the western nations agreed that before you go to war you have to get agreement with the other western nations that it is necessary. That the country being attacked has done something wrong. I'm pretty sure that wasn't the case in the initial attack on Iraq this time round. So the war started before the UN or nato or whatever it is these days agreed that it was necessary.
laaalaaa From: laaalaaa Date: November 10th, 2006 08:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
i'll just go back to being quiet :D
From: gweedeauxsl33t Date: November 7th, 2006 03:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hey PA,

You got any sources to backup those statements? Maybe the number of folks Sadaam killed during his illustrious tenure, and conversely a credible account of the casualties suffered during the current conflict?

Rhetoric and talking points are all well and good, but I'd be ever so grateful for a little evidence to back that up.

Thanks. Ever so. In advance.
paranoidandroid From: paranoidandroid Date: November 8th, 2006 01:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
Before making my post I did a little "internet" research and came across a site stating Saddams top 5 crimes. (http://history1900s.about.com/od/saddamhussein/a/husseincrimes.htm)
This is where I got the number of folks he was accused of killing. The number that is continually banded about in the news here is 180k.

The number of civilian casualties in Iraq are hard to come by (I have taken the liberty of counting both conflicts even though the first war was considered "legal" by the majority of the world) the new scientist puts the current conflict at more than 100,000 deaths(http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn6596) as does the BBC (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/3962969.stm)
Wiki for the gulf war lists 100,000 loss of Iraq troops... the number of civilian deaths is small in comparison but still controversial.

There are other sites with lower death counts for the current conflict but the information is not dated - I can't tell if it's from years ago or it's a more conservative estimate.
The number of allied forces who have lost their lives is over 3000 (http://edition.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/meast/10/16/iraq.main/index.html)

Measuring the effect on the environment is full of subjectivity... but in my opinion "the west" - and by that I mean western Europe and the United States - are responsible for a large majority of the greenhouse gas emissions.

The Kyoto treaty (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/2233897.stm) has had little to no effect on the rich nations damaging the planet, while at the same time looking down their noses at the developing nations for copying them.
From: (Anonymous) Date: November 9th, 2006 12:27 am (UTC) (Link)
You're counting the death toll from Desert Storm? That's pretty absurd. Why not count those in Saddams atrocities, he ordered those troops to start the war in which they were killed? Are we also responsible for the deaths of any innocents in Kuwait that Saddams troops may have caused? You want to blame the west for the deaths of the troops we sent to war and for the troops HE sent to war, you aren't making any sense.
paranoidandroid From: paranoidandroid Date: November 9th, 2006 01:06 am (UTC) (Link)
I said the allies were responsible for as many Iraqi deaths as Saddam was. They were.

Did we need to wade into Iran with cluster bombs and high altitude bombing? Could we have used less fatal force? We were not exactly playing on a level field. Less than 100 allied forces died in the gulf war - and a significant number of those were from "friendly fire"

That aside - my question is should Saddam be killed for his crimes. The rest is to add perspective.

Even if you ignore the gulf war - and change my original statement to he killed hundreds of thousands - "we" killed just one hundred thousand - once you get into that sort of magnitude it doesn't make much difference in morality to me.
From: (Anonymous) Date: November 9th, 2006 12:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes, Saddam should swing for his crimes. I think you should ask the legal system of Iraq if they think it's justice. As for the fatal force question, should we use harsh language instead of bullets and bombs?
jestermephist From: jestermephist Date: November 9th, 2006 01:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
oh man, I did it again, I am having no luck with this lately.
jestermephist From: jestermephist Date: November 9th, 2006 12:29 am (UTC) (Link)
The anonymous comment was me, if it shows up. Sorry about that, forgot to login.
paranoidandroid From: paranoidandroid Date: November 9th, 2006 01:16 am (UTC) (Link)
No problem - I screen anon comments to prevent spam bots benefitting from even the little traffic I get. I've unscreened so you should be able to see it now.
sassylidge From: sassylidge Date: November 7th, 2006 04:11 pm (UTC) (Link)
I disagree that we have killed more civilians than Saddam did. Where are you getting your proof?

Also, "we" aren't putting saddam to death. Iraq is.
paranoidandroid From: paranoidandroid Date: November 8th, 2006 01:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
"We" are - the "civilized" world has put Saddam on trial after ousting him from power in Iraq. As for numbers of deaths, you can see several sources in my previous reply.
paranoidandroid From: paranoidandroid Date: November 9th, 2006 01:07 am (UTC) (Link)
I forgot to mention - I didn't say "civilian deaths" I said Iraqi nationals
(Deleted comment)
paranoidandroid From: paranoidandroid Date: November 9th, 2006 01:25 am (UTC) (Link)
Ahh - a web site I read suggested he's been tried for envirenmental damage - I did think that was bizarre considering the other crimes. Of course it might just be my reading comprehension!

I believe it is our place to voice concerns on the morality of his judgement. We stepped into something - we caused the end result - we should be bringing pressure to bare to move them on from the barbaric practices of Saddams reign to something the new regime can be proud of. If we are not to meddle - we shouldn't have been there in the first place. We're up to a necks in it already - might as well try to make the best of it.

Of course - that's just my opinion! Everyone has one and yours is as valid as mine. :)

From: faith__eternal Date: November 7th, 2006 06:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, a lot of people derserve to be punished over a lot of stuff. I just fear what sort of uproar this will add to the uproar already existing. They could have given him a life sentense or plan to execute him years down the road when (hopefully) things start to settle down. He does deserve to be punished in the harshest way since he was quite cruel and brutal to many people. is plans were pure evil. And the US will look at it from a religious view that any man that commits murder deserves to be killed by man as punishment.

I guess the US and UK are trying to do something good through all the war nonsense? I hope. But I feel it's mostly unecessary. And Bush is an evilish one too.

I don't know anymore. It's all f**ked up!
paranoidandroid From: paranoidandroid Date: November 9th, 2006 01:30 am (UTC) (Link)
He does deserve to be punished, of that I agree entirely. I just don't agree with capital punishment... under any circumsatance.

I find it hard to believe a nation of Christians ignore Christ and revert back to the old testement "An eye for and eye" mentality when Christ said (and I'll paraphrase here) "you don't want to be doing that any more - you should do as I say instead - turn the other cheek"

It certainly is b0rked beyond repair.
From: faith__eternal Date: November 9th, 2006 01:59 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm impressed:) I too take this view. Though sometimes I go back and forth, but in the end, I go back:p I feel it's not our place to judge and sentence so harshly. That's up to God. Otherwise, it's basically murder for murder.
tabby_of_doom From: tabby_of_doom Date: November 7th, 2006 11:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
This is much like the conversation that I had today over lunch. Americans are completely hypocritical when it comes to Saddam Hussein's crimes on humanity. We are no strangers to genocide. America is responsible for the near decimation of millions of Native Americans over the centuries of "discovery." We've gone so far as to use Gatlin guns on the Native American population before their final surrender.

I believe life imprisonment is the more ideal punishment for Hussein. The death penalty is a barbaric practice and you cannot be a civilized country when you practice barbaric practices.

That's just one woman's opinion.
jestermephist From: jestermephist Date: November 8th, 2006 12:56 am (UTC) (Link)
So we should never punish a person for an atrocity because some of our forefathers weren't as enlightened as we are now? The death penalty is more humane than forcing a person to live their life out in a cage with other criminals and be raped and so on. Barbaric and civilised are the kind of words and judgements those people who murdered all those native americans used.
jestermephist From: jestermephist Date: November 8th, 2006 01:08 am (UTC) (Link)
Um, that's kind of a candy coated world view. Sometimes force is needed, we could all have let europe be overrun by the nazis and just stood by on a moral high horse. We could die secure in the knowledge that those bad men were wrong but violence is never the answer. Maybe we should have hung Churchhill and Truman and burned Roosevelt in effigy for all those innocent germans who were killed?
paranoidandroid From: paranoidandroid Date: November 9th, 2006 01:14 am (UTC) (Link)
Sometimes force is needed. Sometimes it is questionable whether it is needed. This time it is highly questionable.

The death penalty is wrong. There is absolutely nothing you can say to me that will change my point of view on this subject. There are viable alternatives to the death penalty. Most of the "civilised" world has worked out the death penalty is not needed - it's about time the USA did too.

I would not equate the Iraq war with the second World War. I can threfore draw no parallels between the two.
jestermephist From: jestermephist Date: November 9th, 2006 01:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
Well, I'm all for the death penalty, until criminals stop raping, molesting, or murdering I will remain in favor of the death penalty. You can throw civilised around all you want but that's a judgemental word implying those who don't agree with you are to be dismissed as less than you. You don't have to see the parallels between an evil dictator who starts with atrocities against his own people but eventually invades a less powerful neighbor and an evil dictator who starts with atrocities against his own people but eventually invades a less powerful neighbor if you choose. I do, but I'm an uncivilised American.
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