NYT reported The execution-style killing of a defense lawyer in the trial of Saddam Hussein and some top associates shocked Iraqi and American officials on Friday and renewed doubts about whether it is possible to hold a fair trial in the midst of a war that has spurred a wave of revenge killings against people linked to Mr. Hussein.
I don't know what the problem is. Someone obviously read Shakespeare, "Henry VI", Part IV: "The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers."A group of a dozen armed men seized the lawyer, Sadoun al-Janabi, from his Baghdad office at 10 p.m. on Thursday and his body, with two bullet wounds to the head, was found in a rubbish-strewn lot nearby about an hour later, an Iraqi police spokesman said.
Maybe he should have chosen a more respectible profession (or at least been more selective in choosing his clients).The killing occurred less than 36 hours after Mr. Hussein's trial began on Wednesday, with live television coverage that identified Mr. Janabi by name and showed close-ups of him presenting arguments in the court on behalf of his client, Awad Hamed al-Bander, the former head of the Revolutionary Court under Mr. Hussein.
That is the problem: he was defending a judge.Some Western human rights advocates who attended Wednesday's court session said that the killing reopened the issue of whether the trial should have been held outside Iraq, a question rights groups have raised ever since American troops toppled Mr. Hussein in April 2003.
"We understand that any trial will need to be accessible to the victims of the crimes, and to those in whose names the crimes were committed," said Richard Dicker, a lawyer who heads the international justice program for Human Rights Watch, based in New York. "But if it proves impossible to conduct a fair trial because of the security conditions, the question arises of relocating the trial elsewhere to allow for a fair proceeding."
Like move it to the Hague? They have not finished with Millosovich, have they? We don't want Saddam to die of old age. Too many Iraqis want to see him swing from the end of a rope.Many Western legal experts and rights advocates have argued that Mr. Hussein should have been tried before an international court, or in an Iraqi court with a strong international dimension. But the Bush administration and its Iraqi political allies rejected that in favor of an Iraqi tribunal sitting in Baghdad, partly because an international court would not have the option of imposing the death penalty, which many Iraqis believe is the only fit punishment for Mr. Hussein.