Is it just me or have you noticed that Joltin’ Joe’s looking mighty piqued these days. He lost Al Gore’s imprimataur. And now, with Howard Dean’s ascendancy there doesn’t seem much of a place in the Party for Joe’s strident, right-wing views.
I remember when Gore named him his Vice-Presidential candidate. I kind of liked the guy. He was refreshingly shiny, straightforward and scrub-faced. Old straight arrow Joe. But lately Joe’s turned me off big time.
Today’s New York Times says he called for the death of Sadaam. Joe is an Orthodox Jew. While I am not, I’d like to remind him of an important aspect of Jewish law that he seems to have missed: an ancient Talmudic rabbi said that a Sanhedrin (Israel’s Supreme Court) that sentenced a single person to death in seventy years was called a “hanging court.” So much for Joe’s sense of compassion and decency and adherence to his religion’s traditions. Keep in mind, I’m agnostic about Sadaam’s fate. But I think it’s a tad unseemly for a potential future president to call for a suspect’s execution BEFORE he’s even been tried!
He’s been heard in the media talking shrilly and insistently about Dean’s shortcomings. One of his more memorable blows: “If Howard Dean were President, Sadaam Hussein would still be President of Iraq.”
Well, yeah if we hadn’t mounted a preemptive, unilateralist putsch against Sadaam he would still be president of Iraq. But what would we have gained? Let’s see: we’d still have some semblance of impartiality in negotiating to end the Mideast conflict. We wouldn’t have hundreds of jihadists mounting terrorist violence against westerners wherever they can find them. We’d have 400 more boys and girls coming home to the families every night (& who knows how many Iraqis as well). We’d still have the friendship and alleigance of some of our former allies: France, Germany, Russia and China. Not to mention, that we might’ve mounted an INTERNATIONAL military, poliitcal and economic campaign that would’ve knocked Sadaam from his perch.
With Sadaam’s capture, Joe feels it’s his time to shine. But I detect a note of desperation in his voice. LIke he knows it’s not going well and he’s got to strike a few blows before the money, and his campaign dry up. The voice has transformed from its normal baritone into a shrill, almost falsetto pitch. Like a boy whose just lost his marbles whining: “Mommy, he took my marbles. It’s just not fair!”
Joe Lieberman appears to think he’s running for President against Howard Dean, instead of the real opponent, George Bush. The danger, of course, is that Lieberman will do the Republicans’ work for them. If he stays in the race too much longer and continues his merciless blows it could cause some damage to Dean among Lieberman’s right of center Democratic supporters (not too many, but every vote’s going to count in November). That would be truly tragic because in a tight election you need everyone on board.
There were calls for Eichmann’s head before the nuremberg trials too, no? Was that wrong? In my opinion, those calls were well justified. Personally, I am against the death penalty in this country becuase of the occasional abuse by the courts. But Eichmann’s guilt was assured before the trials too, just like Saddam. This isn’t your run of the mill 1st degree murderer. He’s a butcher, a tyrant. These calls by Bush and Lieberman, though a bit premature, are justified too.
The trial of a man like Saddam did not come along so frequently in those ancient times.
“it could cause some damage to Dean among Lieberman’s right of center Democratic supporters”
Dean causes all the damage with his own words!
Charley Davis says
Eichmann was not tried at the Nuremburg Trials which took place in 1946 and 1947 in Germany. Eichmann was captured by Israel years later (about 1968) I beleive. He was convicted of “crimes against humanity” and was executed. Crimes against humanity is considered to be worse than the usual first degree murder (if such can ever be termed “usual”).
Trial or no trial the evidence we all know to be true shows that Saddam is also guilty of crmes against humanity. I believe he should be executed as should several others guilty of the same horrific crimes – Chemical Ali, etc.
Richard Silverstein says
Eichmann’s trial occurred in 1962 if I recall correctly, in Israel as Charley Davis notes.
While Sadaam may be guilty of crimes against humanity, so have many other prominent leaders who ended their lives in peace & tranquility never having seen the court of justice. Do you really believe that Sadaam’s crimes rise to the level of Eichmann’s? If so, why charge Sadaam with capital murder when the world did almost nothing to prosecute people like Idi Amin, Pol Pot and Radavan Karatich (I spell Slavic names abysmally, I know)? Isn’t this hypocritical & purely politically motivated revenge by Bush?