Sunday, December 14, 2003

Rejoice ! Rejoice !

England carve out a draw in Sri Lanka - and a nation breathes again.

Oh, and some bloke with a remarkable resemblance to Alexander Solzhenitsyn has been captured in Tikrit.

Exclusive Victorian-style photograph of Saddam Hussein seconds before he was brought before a military barber. Taken by Frank Meadow Sutcliffe

Already BBC Radio have found the downside. A commentator on R5 thought the use of the words 'We Got Him !' would offend people throughout Britain, not to mention the fabled Arab Street, in a state of permanent fury after Afghanistan, Iraq, Jenin, Gloucester and other imperialist atrocities, but seemingly as hard to find as the Mi-Go of the Himalayas.

BBC correspondents raised fears about the fairness of a possible trial, and worried about photographs and the Geneva Convention. Was Saddam in uniform ?

I believe its possible for a trial to be fair and yet the verdict to be known in advance.

The children weren't so concerned. My small daughter, who's been studying the sad fate of Guy Fawkes at her Catholic primary, wanted to know if he would be racked or have his fingernails removed. The eleven year old listened to the R5 correspondent and asked 'why don't they just shoot him ?'. I think he meant Saddam.

Over the last year we have heard a mighty chorus of voices urging that Iraq be run by the Iraqi people with no outside interference. Just watch those same people urge that Saddam not be handed over to the Iraqis.

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