Wednesday, May 04, 2011

In Reply: God-given inalienable rights apply to everyone, all the time.

In reply to the following comment by Dana Pico at the Common Sense Political Thought post, The best result.:
If he had a suicide vest on, it would mean that he was prepared for the attack, that he knew it was coming, in which case he’d almost certainly have tried to escape before the SEALs arrived.

It’s got to take some time to put on a suicide explosive vest and get it right, a lot more time than it would to grab an AK-47 and start defending yourself.

“Arresting” Osama bin Laden would have been like capturing Adolf Hitler, nothing but a circus. We did capture Saddam Hussein, and the Iraqis put him on trial, and, even without the idiocy that American jurisprudence has become, the trial turned into a circus.

Your God-given, inalienable rights are something to be considered in a trial, in a criminal proceeding. But this is war, has always been war, and when you encounter the enemy, the automatic prejudice is to shoot him.
I’m only going with what what I read, Dana… Perhaps I should’ve said "IED" rather than "suicide vest," but ObL blowing himself up really was a legitimate concern…

Osama bin Laden: Osama bin Laden's surrender wasn't a likely outcome in raid, U.S. officials say - "Bin Laden could have surrendered only 'if he did not pose any type of threat whatsoever,' White House counter-terrorism chief John Brennan said on Fox television, and if U.S. troops 'were confident of that in terms of his not having an IED [improvised explosives device] on his body, his not having some type of hidden weapon or whatever.'"

(In fact, there’s a more in depth version of this story I read somewhere, that tells of a team who tried to take a terrorist into custody in a similar situation (at night, at home, not expecting to be caught) where the guy did blow himself up (and took some of his would-be captors with him. I’ll post the link, if I ever find it, again.) [After looking around all day, I'm beginning to think I imagined it. The closest I came was the story further down at the very link I provided, that described the Jordanian who we believed to be working with us, who detonated a vest after several CIA agents gathered around to greet him.]

I agree with you about arresting the guy, and like I said, I do agree that this was the best result.

But no... God-given inalienable rights apply to everyone, all the time. Even in war, shooting folks who’re obviously unarmed isn’t kosher, morally or legally. I’d like to think he posed some immediate potential threat that justified his killing, because if this was an execution, I’m going to be experiencing a little bit more cognitive dissonance than I’d like, vis-à-vis who we are and what we stand for.
Posted 4 May 2011 at 12:51

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