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Re: [casi] Prime Minister and mass graves

Dear Peter & List,

The issue of putting Saddam on trial is indeed a very
complicated one. The article referred to by Muhammad
attempts to portray the trial of Saddam in Iraq as a
step towards returning sovereignty to the people of
Iraq. Forget about the fact that Iraq remains under
occupation; forget the Geneva conventions; forget that
the attack on Iraq was in itself a violation of
international law and a war crime; forget that only a
sovereign state can have a sovereign legal system...
How can a state be sovereign under occupation??

> it is patronising to argue that the Iraqi
authorities cannot dispense justice<

Why wasn’t the same argument used in the former
Yugoslavia? Aren’t the Yugoslavs able to dispense
justice in the same way? Why was Milosovic then taken
to the Hague for a special trial instead of being
tried by his own people?? Perhaps the distingushed QC
can explain that issue..

To start with, the Special Tribunal established in
Iraq a few days before the announcement of the arrest
of Saddam was given one mandate only: to try elements
of the former regime for crimes against humanity, war
crimes and genocide. I do not want to go into
speculations on whether or not Saddam was already in
custody when the tribunal was established, for this is
the not the place for it. It is enough to say that it
is too good to be a coincidence..

There is an almost unanimous agreement among legal
experts all over the world that the tribunal has no
legitimacy because it was established by the IGC which
was appointed by the Occupation force after an illegal
aggression. It therefore does NOT represent the people
of Iraq, but the will of the occupiers.

There is also another problem with that tribunal.
Under which laws are Saddam and his supporters going
to be tried? We know that the CPA had suspended Iraq’s
laws, and imposed new laws and regulations (again in
violation of international law). According to which
laws is Saddam going to be tried?
If an Iraqi court is to try Saddam for the above
crimes, then it should deal with ALL such crimes
committed against the people of Iraq, regardless of
who committed them. That means that the court will
have to try US, British and other leaders for their
complicity in Iraq’s affairs and crimes committed
against Iraqis since 1958; it should deal with crimes
committed by Kurdish separatist groups in Iraq; it
should deal with Turkish crimes committed inside Iraq;
it should deal with crimes committed by SCIRI, Da’wa
party, communists and all other parties, including the
Ba’th, against Iraqis; it should deal with the
genocidal sanctions imposed against Iraq; it should
deal with the crimes committed against Iraq under the
illegal no-fly zone regime; it should deal with the
latest illegal aggression against Iraq; it should deal
with Saudi and Kuwaiti complicity in the Iran war; it
should demand compensations for Iraqis for all their
losses caused by the bombings and attacks.. it
should.. it should.. The list is very long..

Is the tribunal going to do that? Certainly not,
because it was not established to bring justice to
Iraqis, but to cover up the bigger crimes.

And that is why an international tribunal is not
suitable, because then the other and bigger crimes
against Iraqis will be exposed. And because if the UN
establishes such a tribunal, the US will not be able
to decide alone how the trial is conducted. We don’t
want the world to know the whole truth, now do we??

One final issue.
If the supporters of trying Saddam in Iraq insist that
Iraqi law is still valid, then may I remind them that
law 734 of 1987 stipulates that any Iraqi or foreigner
living in Iraq, who deals with a foreign power, will
face the death penalty. If Iraqi law is to be applied,
then all members of the IGC should be tried for
How about that??


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