American citizen sentenced to death in Iraq

Because due process is for pussies, just like it says in the Constitution!

Link (AP)

Link (Scott Horton)

I don’t know what to say other than this is evil. What more do we need to see to understand how horribly, horribly wrong the American justice system has gone, and is going? I don’t want to anticipate, but if there are any defenders of this action, I’m curious as to what tack they could take. I’m not usually one to start political threads, but this is just atrocious.

That would be “how horribly wrong the Iraqi justice system has gone.” And you know, these are just the statements by his attorneys, so we’re just hearing one side of the story here…the side biased toward him.

Actually, probably more like “how horribly wrong the American political system has gone.” If the story is to be accepted at face value, it appears as though American Military Personnel – almost undoubtedly on orders from above (hence “political”) – were calling the shots here, and the Iraqi judge pretty much coerced.

Full Disclosure – While I am an American citizen, and care about it, I have been ex-pat (and dual citizen, along with my chosen home of Israel) for almost all of my life; not quite sure if this makes a difference regarding the validity of my opinion, but I should probably mention it.

That’s a good point. You should really only get a trial if you’re innocent – if you’re guilty, it’s just pointless molly-coddling.

Shit, I accidentally deleted my middle sentence – insert a “After all, he might be guilty.” in there.

You’re missing my point. My point is, all we have is his attorneys’ record of what happened in the complaint. We don’t know that what they’re claiming is accurate.

So you think he may have in fact gotten a fair trial in which he got to see the evidence against him and present a defense, and is pretending he didn’t? :confused: Wouldn’t that be an incredibly easy claim to disprove?

I’m saying I don’t know what happened at the trial. I don’t even know if under Iraqi law, a defendant is entitled to see the evidence against him or present a defense.

And the question in the linked articles doesn’t seem to be whether his trial was fair or not…it’s whether, under the law, the US can turn him over to the Iraqis, and I don’t know what the law says about that, either.

Oh, well, that makes it okay then. :rolleyes:

It seems to me that as an American, my government should be working to ensure that I’m treated fairly and justly in all cases, not looking for legal loopholes to put me in the hands of a system which lacks the most fundamental requirements for fairness.

Serious question: would you feel the same way if it was an American soldier sentenced to death by an Iraqi court without a chance to defend himself?

Serious answer: If the American soldier (or you, or me) committed a crime under Iraqi law and Iraqi jurisdiction, then he’s subject to the Iraqi judicial system. So, yes, I would feel the same way.

What’s your alternative? To say that Americans have immunity in the rest of the world?

What legal loophole was being abused here? If I understood the article correctly, the judge had already announced his intent to dismiss the charges. If US officials can convince the Iraqi judicial system to condemn Americans to death without trial, the term “legal loophole” seems kind of inadequate.

If the United States Army can’t direct a verdict to a judge in an Iraqi civillian court, then the terrorists have already won.

Why do you hate freedom?


I’m quite surprised, I must say. You’re telling me if the security forces in a province where the insurgency is strong started grabbing American forces and charging them with murder (e.g. on account of civilian casualties that occurred during a battle), you’d have no problem with them being executed on the say-so of a single judge? You wouldn’t worry that the execution was politically motivated and/or unfair? You wouldn’t expect the government to intervene?

George the appointed has pretty much given a one finger salute to internatonal law, and our bought and paid for congress passed a law saying to heck with Habeous corpus, you can bury that with the rest of the corpses we have created. We as a nation now claim the right to imprison, torture and do as we please, to any one anywhere in the world. Why should Iraq not claim the same right? We lost the high ground a long time ago, now we just made it US law, and I personally think that sucks, and the constitution should be burned, to mark the day we went from freedom to Stalin’s plan. I wore the pickle suit, and swore to uphold the constitution. Correct me if Iam wrong,but I thought the president did too. He is not, he is evaporating the constitution

I have to say I find a few disturbing commonalities between the two original OP links.

First, the identification, or lack thereof, of the “American Officers”. Not only were they not named, the defense lawyers say nothing about attempts to learn their names. Surely anyone there with a lick of sense would have asked, “Who ARE you?” Even a refusal to answer would be noteworthy.

And no real explanation of how these two actually performed their intervention. Did they get up on a witness stand? Did they just start shouting out comments from the audience as the sentencing started? These are omissions from the story that make the story somewhat less credible, IMO.

OTOH, a cooperative Iraqi court would be a great help to the Bush administration. He could try non-Americans in the American kangaroo military tribunals; and dump the American citizens into an Iraqi death factory. Nice little one-two combination if you’re not too picky about actual justice.

It says they had an exparte meeting with the judge. That means they took the judge into another room. He came back, and said “Guilty! Kill him.”

No one was given any other information, though, so, in GWBspeak, that means everyone who loves freedom will take our word for it that justice was done, and we are staying the course.

Those who hate freedom might object, but their turn will come.


Because I have to lose everything to get it.

…Or so I’ve heard, anyway.

Christ, Giraffe, that happens HERE. See it on the news about once a week.

I got no dog in this fight. Don’t know if this guy gotta fair trial or not. (My distrust of our administration and the goons they associate with would lead to me think that he did not, but that is my bias). But to contend that a defense lawyer wouldn’t lie his ass off in the press to try to sway public opinion seems just a little naive.

I saw that, but that was apparently after a whole series of exchanges had transpired. They got briefed by somebody about the ruling, they protested, yadayadayada. At least that’s how I read it.

How and when did that all happen> Who briefed them? There was no mention of an Iraqi prosecutor either, another interesting omission.

I certainly could be wrong about this, as I am speculating based on a lack of information, but I am suspicious of these accounts.

I will stop now, as I have no actual data to argue over.