ding dong saddam is dead...
by most accounts, saddam hussein was hanged by the neck until he was dead, dead, dead sometime in the last few hours. (to be realistic about it, his neck probably snapped, severing his spinal cord, less than a second after the trapdoor underneath his feet opened, which is more than he deserved.)
i never met him, and i've only met one person (that i know of) who was directly affected by his presence on this planet, but i'm glad he's dead.
there was an article in the new yorker some years back, post-gulf war I (the one that caused me to register as a conscientious objector) that described how one of his sons (i don't remember if it was uday or qusay) had bought a machine that was designed to shred plastic for recycling, and had used it to kill people.
if you were lucky you were fed into it head-first, but most went in feet first, and took several tens of seconds to die.
the remains were collected in garbage bags and fed to fish.
i am a self-acknowledged bleeding-heart liberal; i am in favor of gay marriage, the right to abortion, legalization of most drugs, universal education and healthcare, et bloody cetera.
i oppose the death penalty in almost all cases because i think, as a society, we have an obligation to live and deal with the results of what we've created (and we can certainly afford it) and simply killing off the products of our society we don't like is a cop-out.
that being said, i also believe there are people who would better serve humanity by being dead, and hussein is one of them. he is not (by far) the worst there is, and i don't believe for a second that his death will deter other dictators or warlords, but what it will do is remove him from society, and perhaps give some sense of justice to those he wronged.
it's a small comfort for those who's loved ones were tortured and killed, and for those who are being killed in the continuing war, and it's very easy for me to say from the comfort of my living room, but i'm glad he's dead.
Labels: grow up