Sunday, December 14, 2003

Few people -- least of all me -- will be anything but delighted at Saddam Hussein's capture.

Now, with the former Iraqi leader behind bars, attention turns to the manner in which any trial is conducted.

Tony Blair has already said that the Iraqi people will decide his fate. But questions are being raised as to whether the Iraqi-led war crimes tribunal established last week will comply with international standards of fairness.

Human Rights Watch is among the groups to have spoken out about the tribunal, warning that "key provisions are lacking to ensure credible and legitimate trials."

Some may argue, understandably, that a tyrant of Saddam Hussein's magnitude does not deserve fairness. But to deny him the basic rights he denied millions of Iraqis smacks of revenge, not justice.

This week's Economist reports on the potential problems with Iraq's war crimes tribunal. The article is available by subscription only, so I've put it into a Word and plain text document below.

Economist: Bringing the old regime to trial (.doc)
Economist: Bringing the old regime to trial (.txt)


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