Sunday, November 12, 2006

Long Live Saddam ... In prison

The death penalty is something our nation should be outgrowing, not exporting.

That said, there are reasons to string the madman up, take some pictures of his bloated corpse, and be done with him. Mainly, his demise might diminish the fervor of one rank of the so-called insurgents who've devoted themselves to spilling the blood of Americans and Shiites in Iraq for the last three and half years. His death might also reassure some of our Iraqi allies that they'll not be facing an exact repeat of the last time we retreated from the region and left them to be rounded up and tortured for their support of Western intervention. And there's always the sadistic pleasure of taking revenge on an unrepentant, egomaniacal killer.

Nonetheless, Saddam should live. It might be a good idea to remove him to a maximum security prison in, say, Denmark, but killing him is unwise. Everybody loves a shahid, so why let him pull an Obi-Wan Kenobi on us? Move him to a northern climate, put him on a high-trans-fat diet with not much yard time, and he'll pass like Slobodan--in his sleep before the next Olympics. Not much glory in that.

Sadly, it's not up to us--or me, for that matter, like always. We turned him over to the Iraqis (not so much a puppet regime as a Pinocchio regime) when he should have gone to the Hague. When they hang him, there will no doubt be celebratory gunfire in the streets. Get yer' AK out. Another victory for civilization. Before the barrels cool they'll be back to murdering one another in the name of Allah.


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