Bringing Back Saddam .. almost

Category: Middle East Topics: Capital Punishment, Crime And Justice, Iraq Views: 3940
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The Saddam-al Qaeda connection has fizzled and no nuclear, biological or chemical weapons have been unearthed in post-invasion Iraq. So the Bush administration's fallback, ex post facto rationale for invading Iraq is that the country is better off without Saddam. But the U.S. backed Iraqi government seems to be ruling more like Saddam everyday.

Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi has recently ordered the arrest of political opponents, closed a prominent media outlet reporting stories that were embarrassing to the Iraqi government, and taken up aggressive tactics vis-a-vis the opposition guerrillas, including reinstating the death penalty against them. 

After the cosmetic changeover of power from the U.S. occupation to a hand-picked Iraqi Prime Minister, Allawi's behavior is predictable. With an Iraqi glove now on the fist of U.S. power, Iraqis can get away with much harsher policies toward other Iraqis than could a foreign occupier-especially the leader of the free world, which has billed its invasion as bringing democracy to an autocratic country. Thus, the U.S. government, as it has done so many times during the Cold War and after, is masking with high flying democratic rhetoric the substitution of an unfriendly dictator with a friendly one. 

The Iraqi government has ordered the arrest of political opponents Ahmed Chalabi and his nephew Salem, who is leading the prosecution of Saddam. They were originally darlings of the Pentagon and American neo-conservatives but have since fallen out of favor with the Bush administration. The Chalabis did too much consorting with the theocrats in Iran for U.S. authorities to stomach. 

In another Saddam-like move, Allawi has closed the Iraq office of Al Jazeera, the pan-Arabic television network, for broadcasting images that embarrassed the Iraqi government. Apparently, the network's coverage was placing too much emphasis on the rampant kidnappings that have recently paralyzed Iraq. 

Finally, Allawi is attempting to show that he will be aggressive against the opposition guerrillas. He has vowed that the fierce offensive in the holy city of Najaf by U.S. troops and Iraqi security forces against the militia of cleric Moktada al-Sadr would continue with no cease fire. Given the sorry state of the Iraqi security forces, the U.S. military is really the one that has decided that no quarter will be given to the insurgents. 

And the aggressive tactics will continue even after guerrillas are captured. After the invasion, to signal that a new benevolent era had arrived in Iraq, the U.S. occupation authority under L. Paul Bremer III suspended the death penalty. Of course, "suspended" is the key word. A suspension, rather than elimination, would allow a future Iraqi government to bring the ultimate penalty back if things got rough. Things got rough. 

Allawi has cast the death penalty so widely that it covers almost any type of guerrilla attack. The death penalty can be applied to Iraqis who engage in ambushes, hijacking, kidnapping, attacks on infrastructure and murder. Of course, killing someone when defending the home country from an unprovoked and unnecessary foreign invasion and occupation is defined as murder. Even in World War II when the stakes were much higher, the United States did not execute captured German or Japanese soldiers for defending their homeland. In fact, after the war, the vast majority of them were given their freedom. Furthermore, although Iraqi officials have claimed that the list of capital offenses excludes any possibility that the death penalty will again be used for political reasons, the ultimate sentence can be meted out for the vague offense of "endangering national security." Such Orwellian wording has to make Iraqis-accustomed to Saddam's terror-very nervous about the direction the new Allawi government is heading.

Americans should be nervous too. One of the many emerging parallels between the current Mesopotamian mess and the Vietnam War is the use of autocratic tactics by U.S. installed puppet governments that lacked popular legitimacy. That strategy failed in Vietnam and it is likely to fail in Iraq. The only way out for the United States is to allow Iraqis to have genuine self-determination soon.

Ivan Eland is the Director of the Center on Peace and Liberty at the Independent Institute in Oakland, California and author of the book, Putting "Defense" Back into U.S. Defense Policy: Rethinking U.S. Security in the Post-Cold War World.


  Category: Middle East
  Topics: Capital Punishment, Crime And Justice, Iraq
Views: 3940

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Older Comments:
PAUL FROM UK said:
Who is the puppet master? Cut those strings and let the Iraqi people decide ...democracy for the people now.

Peace for All.
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YASHMIN FROM USA said:
Akbar, thank you for your comments. I feel exactly same and yes, those demons must have forgotten that one day they WILL pay for what they are doing. Allawi together with his so called Amreican friends is preparing this world for Dajjal to take over. Little do they know that Islam will never die. That Islam is the solution.
I pray for the innocent muslims suffering and butchered everyday by these traitors against Islam.
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JOHN FROM GERMANY said:
SPREAD THIS ARTCILE BY EMAIL!!!

DONT let AMERICA win the PROPAGANDA WAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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BNAK FROM USA said:
Brother Peter, Original sin is a matter that needs to be approached from different angles.
Firstly: The Islamic belief concerning human sin is: the individual bears the responsibility for his own sin; no one else should bear this burden for him, nor should he bear the burden for anyone else. Allah says in the Quran, "And no bearer of burdens shall bear another's burden..." [Faatir 35:18]. This refutes the idea of original sin. If the father commits a sin, what fault is that of his children and grandchildren? Why should they bear the burden of a sin that someone else committed? The Christian belief that the descendents should bear the sin of their father is the essence of injustice. How can any sane person say that the sin should be carried down the centuries by all of humanity, or that the children, grandchildren and subsequent descendants should be tainted because of their father's sin?
Secondly, making mistakes is a part of human nature. Prophet Mohammed (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, "Every son of Aadam is bound to commit sins..." (reported by al-Tirmidhi, 2423), but Allaah has not left man unable to do anything about the mistakes that he makes. He gives man the opportunity to repent, and so the hadeeth (words of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) quoted above concludes: "...and the best of those who commit sins are those who repent." The mercy of Allaah is clear in the teachings of Islam, as Allaah calls His servants (interpretation of the meaning): "Say, 'O My servants who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allaah, verily Allaah forgives all sins. Truly, He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful." [al-Zumar 39:53]
This is human nature, and this is the solution to the problem of sin. But it is injustice to make this human nature, which is bound to make mistakes, a barrier between the servant and his Lord.
Peace unto you!
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AKBAR KHAN FROM CANADA said:
Don't forget to mention the many crimes against humanity Iyad Allawi has already committed - does going into Abu Ghraib prison to personally shoot prisoners in the head qualify? I believe that Iyad Allawi personally executing prisoners does fall into the category of TYRANTS and DICTATORS! Don't tell me that you're a "TOUGH GUY" Allawi, we all know he is a loser washed up by his Israeli masters, and oh yes, bringing back the DEATH PENALTY is a right step in the direction as well, you ugly Mossad loving CIA shaytan. Remember his defence minister has already warned that he'll "chop off insurgents' hands and heads" which basically gives him the right to do what Saudi Arabia has been doing to it's own people for decades...since we all know that these fighters are NOT insurgents, as we can see happening in Najaf with regular CITIZENS joining the Mahdi Army...and they have every reason to do so. Defending their country against cowards bombing holy shrines. I am a Sunni according to my Aqeedah, but no way in the world would I ever accept this jahil attack on historical sites in Iraq. Kufa, Fallujah, Karbala, Baghdad, and so many other cities in Iraq are so important in Islamic history...as Muslims it is our duty to educated ourselves of hte importance that this region of the ME has played for furthering the development of Islamic thought and society.

We cannot let these dumbells continue to send such beautiful civilizations back into yesteryear anymore. This LOSER called Iyad Allawi has been away from Iraq for 33 years! How more obvious can it get than this that he has no qualifications for taking Iraq in the right direction, but IS qualified to take Iraq in the direction he is told to take it, but his past is blemished with connections to Saddam anyways. Back in the 1960's, this man help Saddam climb to power. Mr. Allawi is a THUG and when he lived his lavish lifestyle in London, he was a Mukhabarat agent for Iraqi's, involved in dirty, bloody stuff.
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TERRY RICHARDS FROM AUSTRALIA said:
I dont live in a perfect country but I know where I would rather live. I can go outside without being bombed, play sport go fishing and enjoy life with family friends and neighbours. I can protest if I dont like something and not be locked away. I have lived and worked with all types of religious persons. Here we dont have to kill to put our point across. Lets live with eachother.
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MOHAMMAD QASEM FROM USA said:
I agree 100% and would like to add:
To bring any ligitimate iraqi government even if they don't like the US or if the USA government does not like them.
This is an Iraqi choice, it should be free, democratic, and transparent with no foreign influence at all.
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NOBODY FROM USA said:
I never really liked challabi in the first place. Wasn't he one of those who encouraged the US to attack? He was looking after his own very selfish interests and now his selfish interests are in conflict with US interests. That is the relationship that he created for himself. Servs him right. I have absolutely no sympathy for him or others like. Other than that the article is an entertaining read.
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