Monday, December 08, 2003

From the Damned if you Do, Damned if you Don't Dept. 
Here’s a tidbit from AP’s Niko Price:

Headline: Iraq to Create War Crimes Tribunal

BAGHDAD, Iraq - Saddam Hussein and hundreds of his aides could go on trial for crimes against humanity and genocide in an Iraqi-led tribunal that will be established in the coming days, Iraqi and American officials told The Associated Press on Friday.

Some human rights groups criticized the plans, saying Iraq's U.S. occupiers have too much of a hand in them and that Iraqi judges and prosecutors may not have the experience needed to try the cases.

Ok, I don’t get it. On one hand, these groups are saying the U.S. is too involved. On the other hand, they claim that the little dark swarthy savages—you know, the ones who invented the rule of law in the first place--aren’t competent to try the cases. So if the Iraqis can’t do it themselves, and we can’t help them, then the only option left is to forget about the tribunal at all.

Here’s what they don’t get: If you look at a map of Iraq, superficially looks like one political entity. Ok, we know it really isn’t. Almost everyone by now has figured out that it’s really three: the minority Sunni muslims, and the Shias and ethnic Kurds who were so savagely oppressed by Saddam and a few of his favored Sunni clans.

So most informed people can draw two rough lines on the map and divide the populated areas of the Tigris and Euphrates river valleys, stick a Sunni, Shia, or Kurd label on the map as appropriate, and think that passes for a sophisticated understanding of the situation on the ground.


The reality is that there is no bright line along which the ethnic groups can be separated. Further, Sunni areas are further subdivided into tribes, clans, and sheikdoms—some of which—particularly the al-Tikriti tribe, had closer ties to Saddam than others. Other tribes, even in the Sunni areas, were marginalized and brutalized by Saddam themselves and are aching for payback.

Most people simply do not grasp how deep the interclan rivalries and jealousies are, even among Sunni tribes. Saddam the strong man kept a lid on things in the same way Tito kept a lid on ancient grudges between Croats, Serbs, and Bosnians in the Balkans.

But clans here in Ar Ramadi, and throughout the Al Anbar province, have been arming themselves for years. Some have built up huge neighborhood arsenals, with truckloads of artillery shells. Hundreds of mines. Mortars. RPG-7s, all buried in communal farmlands and behind houses.

Generally, these arsenals were not intended for use against Saddam, or even—for the most part—against coalition troops. The sheiks accumulated these stocks on the sly as a hedge against the collapse of Saddam’s regime, in order to be able to defend themselves against other clans.

Many Iraqis resent being occupied by a foreign power, to be sure. But they’re still human, and share a human thirst for justice. If their thirst cannot be channeled and controlled through the rule of law, then the tribes may well seek rough justice themselves. Don’t believe me? Then jear it from an Iraqi.

Those militants don't understand any language except the language of force. Fuck human rights. Those aren't humans anyway. We desperately NEED to see some heads rolling. Believe it or not. Theres going to have to be some bloodshed for this to work. Bomb the hell out of Tikrit and Al-Awja. Massacre every last person of Saddam's tribe. Rape his women. Yeah. Let them taste some of what we have endured the last 30 years. I don't want to see my dreams ruined because of those trianglees. If the CPA doesn't want to do it, send in a force of IP and civil defense forces and turn your face the other way, they'll be more than glad to do it, believe me.

Apparently, though these human rights groups would prefer to let Iraqi justice disintegrate into blood vengeance, tribal warfare, and vendetta.

Did the United States “have too much of a hand in Nurenburg?”

What’s wrong with these people?

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