Thursday, August 11, 2005

Reuters - UK holds 10 foreigners deemed to be security threat. The BBC >reports these include some of the tabloids' favourite bogeymen like Abu Qatada. Who's already been banged away without charge for two years and is also subject to a control order. (Which would surely tend to suggest that control orders are a waste of time?)

Anyway, looks like they'll all be deported without any kind of trial, and probably without the right to appeal. Despite this being utterly illegal.

Yay for Tony "cunting fuck" Blair and his tough anti-terror measures which are protecting our way of life! (God, I hate him.)


Anonymous Colman said...

Who's first to say "7/7 changed everything"?

8/11/2005 11:11:00 am  
Blogger sean said...

What, so you'd let Abu Qatada out, right? Or give him a nice long expensive trial where we can't convict him cause we're hamstrung by no-phone-tap human rights bollocks, so he goes free, and starts preaching shite and we all get blown up.
Nice one.
I guess you are probably in favour of Omar 'fantastic four' Mohammed getting a £30k car paid for by the British taxpayer, under the Motability Scheme, too?
They should call it the Gullibility Scheme. Coz that's what we've been, so far.
Throwing these ten cunts out should just be the start. Then move on. And if they all get 'brutalised' under a nastier regime than ours, so be it - they're the ones who say they like sharia law and Muslim justice. See how much they like it when the Jordanian Mukhabarat are in charge of shower time in the clink.

8/11/2005 11:53:00 am  
Anonymous Dr Victorino de la Vega said...

Before becoming the Arabian kingdom’s ambassador to the UK, Prince Turki al-Faisal was the head of his country’s ruthless intelligence services for more than two decades.
He personally supervised the killing of hundreds of dissidents be they “Islamic” or democrats; under his guidance thousands of journalists, lawyers, trade union leaders and human rights activists were systematically tortured in Riyadh’s infamous high security prison

In a farewell interview with The Times earlier this week, Prince Turki al-Faisal said that he had been “going around in circles during his 2½-year posting in a failed attempt to make Britain understand the danger posed by Saudi and Arab dissidents in London”

This is where we've come to after 4 years of “war against terror”: Saudi thugs and Pentagon “security experts” are giving enlightened advice to Herr Big Bliar- not that he needs it, Tony’s technocratic/positivist “neolabour” ideology is largely aligned with Washington and Ryadh’s repressive mores…

Blair simply needed a pretext to commence his totalitarian crackdown on civil liberties: from that perspective the tragic events of 7 July 2005 were god sent- on September 12, 2001 his friend Paul Wolfowitz had said that “911 awakened an insouciant giant”…and that “the rules of the game would change”

Sounds familiar?

8/11/2005 11:59:00 am  
Blogger sean said...

Moreover, I don't understand our pantywaisted fear of the death penalty in other countries. I thought when it came to other countries we're meant to respect their traditions? Well maybe the death penalty is one of those.

Jordan is not an enemy of the West, its a relatively friendly and co-operative country, by the standards of the Middle East. Abu Qatada, a Palestinian national, is wanted by the Jordanians for murder and terrorism charges. Yet we snobbishly refuse to hand him over, cause we're pooing our pants that he might be executed.

Who gives a flying fuck? If they want to top him, that's up to them. Let their judicial process deal with people as they see fit. I have no problem with that. Where has this sudden shibboleth about the death penalty come from??

8/11/2005 12:10:00 pm  
Blogger David Ham said...

NM, where does this "without trial" thing come from? The revoking of leave to remain is usually an executive act at first instance. The BBC report specifically notes that they are expected to appeal the decision. Looks like the normal judicial reviews on deportation will be followed including (presumably) a decision on whether the assurances received by the Home Secretary satisfy ECHR requirements.

Personally I'm with Simon Hughes - it would be preferable to prosecute in the UK rather than offloading people on other states.

Sean - I know you hate the ECHR but please don't try to tar it by association with irrelevant rules. The inadmissability of phone tap evidence has nothing to do with human rights law and everything to do with resistance from the police and security service who think it would compromise sources and methods.

8/11/2005 12:10:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Sean - I have no particular problem with making phone tapping admissible in terrorism cases. But part of the delights of western democracy is the belief in the rule of law. We had quite a battle (several, actually - and literally) to achieve that in this country, and I'm rather pissed off to see our Dear Leader chuck it away at the drop of a few home-made bombs.

The guy was banged up for two years and they didn't have enough to bring him to trial, let alone convict. His views may be repellant, and he may spout nonsense, but part of the reason why I consider our system to be better to others is precisely because he's allowed to spout repellant nonsense.

If he has links to terrorism, fine - deport him. But prove it first. That's how the system works in this country.

Dr V - as long as you stay on topic I'm not too bothered, but do you make a habit of cutting and pasting the same comments to lots of different blogs?

8/11/2005 12:14:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

David - sorry, you must have posted as I was typing. The without trial thing is largely an assumption, I must admit. But if it's an executive decision it's pretty much the same thing. In Qatada's case, as I mentioned above, they didn't have enough evidence to imprison him - if they didn't have sufficient evidence to imprison him, they surely don't have sufficient evidence to deport him either.

The basic problem I have with blaming preachers is it strikes me as not too far removed from those arguments that blame computer games or violent movies or Marilyn Manson for nutty teenagers killing people. I also don't quite get how the government can deny any impact from the Iraq war while at the same time trying to punish someone for a few sermons at a mosque. Smacks of doublethink.

8/11/2005 12:27:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

NM, I refer you to my second post. Jordan is a fairly friendly country, arguably a valuable ally. Abu Qatada is wanted their for terrorism and murder.

Yet we won't deport him because we suddenly have this 'thing' about the death penalty.

It's ludicrous liberal posturing, grotesque liberal narcissism. People are dying all over the world, yet all the Liberty and Amnesty people worry about is one wanted terrorist who might receive justice as is it is duly exacted in a friendly country.

On the same grounds we presumably wouldn't deport Saddam Hussein to the Iraqis (if we had him in jail here) in case they hung him. Even though he is a genocidal pervert who murdered tens of thousands of Iraqis.

It's fatuous. The death penalty is not an absolute wrong. It's just something we here in Britain have decided to dispense with in criminal proceedings, for the moment. In treating it as an absolute moral wrong we are crippling our fight against people who want to blow us up.

Again it's the human rights agenda, the ECHR and all that gobshite. In times of conflict and war we have to set aside some of this egregious liberal twaddle.

8/11/2005 12:30:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Sean - he's not just "wanted" in Jordan - he's been sentenced to death there in his absence (about 1/3 down that page).

Whether or not you agree with the death penalty, it has been abolished in this country. For the government to deport Qatada to Jordan without any guarantees that he won't be harmed, they would effectively be sentencing him to death themselves, as the outcome of his deportation would be his execution.

Never mind the morals or wishy-washy liberalism, that would raise all kinds of legal issues about the power of the executive in this country, and set a fairly concerning precedent - all the government would need to do in future would be to secure a conviction in a dodgy court (and you surely can't think that Jordan's justice system is as rigorous as it might be), then deport or allow extradition.

Under the new proposals there would be no appeal procedure or right to a trial in this country. And so the government could effectively order the execution of anyone it likes (including British citizens, if they allow extradition) on a whim.

And that idea scares the shit out of me.

8/11/2005 12:41:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

According to the news Omar 'tastic four' Mohammed has just been detained in the Lebanon. Hooray!
Or are you worried that the questioning of this man might be a little brusque, NM?
I really don't understand, on a very profound level, your comparison twixt radicalising Islamofascist clerics and... er... computer games (it embarrassed me just to write that line; God knows how it feels for you to re-read it).
These clerics preach hatred and jihad. They advise young men to blow themselves up as human bombs. They teach classes on unarmed combat, on how to strip AK 47s, on why no Muslim should be friendly with the kaffirs, on why Jews are worthless scum. They are essentially homicidal Nazis, living amongst us.
With all credit to the designers of Grand Theft Auto, and to the make-up artist who works for Marilyn Manson, I'm not sure they are quite on the same level. Are you?

8/11/2005 12:43:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

NM, just read your last comment.
While I admire (in a way!) your determination to weep for the world, deporting Abu Qatada to a friendly country would not be 'executing him ourselves'.
It would be handing over a convicted murderer to a friendly foreign power, for them to deal with as they see fit.
Who are we to ask for guarantees that someone 'won't be harmed'? Perhaps we should have a look at the beakfast menu in Amman prison, to see if there are enough carbohydrates.
Fer fuck's sake, get a grip. some countries use the death penalty, some don't. As long as they are a friendly country, it's up to them what they do - WITH ONE OF THEIR OWN NATIONALS, CONVICED OF A CRIME IN THEIR COUNTRY. Got nowt to do with us.
If it was a British citizen, of course that would be different. But it ain't. So sod it.

8/11/2005 12:48:00 pm  
Blogger David Ham said...

Sean, you may not feel that the death penalty is an absolute wrong, but most of the Governments of Europe (including the UK) disagree with you. In signing the 13th protcol to ECHR they declared:

"everyone’s right to life is a basic value in a democratic society and that the abolition of the death penalty is essential for the protection of this right and for the full recognition of the inherent dignity of all human beings"

The provisions of the protocol specify that no derogations are possible even in time of war or national emergency.

That's the legal case. The moral case is just as strong. Even the most authoritarian commentators on the terror attacks argue that the right to life is fundamental. All the restrictions which are being proposed and imposed are supposed to protect life. Taking of life must always be wrong except when immediately necessary to protect more lives. It is never necessary to execute someone you have in custody in order to protect life.

8/11/2005 12:50:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

Well David, I just disagree. I did a philosophy degree and this pat liberal piffle was always trotted out.
Just because four hundred European governments have signed up to this doesn't make it right. It doesn't matter a tinker's burp if Tony and Cherie really agree on this, either.
Saying that is just so typical of the bien pensant morality. Lots of 'good' and 'important' people think this is true, therefore it is true.

The fact is state violence is sanctioned in certain circumstances, even by the most muddle-headed lefty. War, for instance. Or shooting suicide bombers who are about to blow themselves up. Whether that state sanctioned violence should be admitted to the jurisprudential sphere is a close moral call.

Some crimes are so heinous they call for 'revenge' - for a moral payback.
We already imprison people for longer because they do terrible deeds, longer than would be logically necessary if all we wanted to do was protect society from the misdoer, or rehabilitate.

Execution is the ultimate extension of that logic.

The great argument against execution (one I fully appreciate) is the possibility of a miscarriage of justice. In times of peace and goodwill this is probably a clinching argument for a civilised country like the UK.

However these cases are different. We are talkign about a foreigner, convicted of murder in a friendly foreign country. If they feel their state security needs the death penalty, good luck to them.

Hand the fucker over.

And there ends my Philosophy lesson. England to win at Old Trafford.

8/11/2005 01:02:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Sean - if you have proof of any of those allegations of what Qatada teaches (I assume you mean him, at least), then I suggest you take it round to the Crown Prosecution Service, because they certainly couldn't find any...

8/11/2005 01:02:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How can we possibly comment on the quality of Jordanian justice. Being perjorative about other cultures is strictly badthink, surely? Double plus ungood?

Critizing the death penalty is Islamaphobic by the way - there are a number of verses in which it is manadated for various crimes.

Please form an orderly queue for the re-education centre.

8/11/2005 01:04:00 pm  
Anonymous soru said...

Forget Jordan, human rights law does not permit the extradition of terrorist suspects to _france_. The prime suspect for the 1995 paris metro bombing was, until a month ago, still successfully fighting extradition.

That is simply broken, and any principle used to justify is is thereby falsifed.

8/11/2005 02:12:00 pm  
Anonymous Colman said...

So Sean, how are you on shooting people who look vaguely like they might be suicide bombers? Or maybe hanging people who had nothing to do with terrorist offences?

8/11/2005 02:43:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Colman, I think I can answer that one:

Sean, July 22nd, 11:21am: "Fer fuck's sake nosemonkey, aren't you glad they are dead??? I am. I trust the police in this situation, more than bleeding heart liberals sitting on their arses in offices."

Sean, July 22nd, 12:13pm: "Jesus, we're under attack and you're already bleating about possible police brutality. Can't you cut them a bit of slack, right now - at this somewhat difficult moment?"

Sean, July 22nd, 12:20pm: "there's a time and a place for getting on the backs of the police, I would have thought right now was not that time, when they are doing their best to protect us from a bunch of homicidal maniacs. With bombs."

Sean, July 23rd, 5:48pm: "This is a war. People are going to die, including innocents. But why in God's name did he run from armed police, the day after four bombs went off? Poor bastard."

Sean, July 23rd, 6:00pm: "it's a nightmare. Now we've got the worst of all worlds - Muslims will be angry, whites are already very angry, the police are trigger happy, and there's still four suicidal bombers on the loose. And I here the cricket's not going too well."

Sean, July 23rd, 6:11pm: "I'm not quite sure this is 'worst case scenario' - that would surely have been the police showing restraint, not shooting and so letting him on the Tube, then it turns out he was a suicide bomber and he kills 50 innocent people.
I think that's worse than killing one innocent person. We have to remember that - this was the decision the cops had to make in a millisecond. Tough job, glad I'm not doing it.
So not, not worst case scenario. What we have here is a nightmare. Different thing entirely!"

8/11/2005 03:07:00 pm  
Blogger David Ham said...

Sean, of course states are entitled to employ violence in certain circumstances. However to be morally (and in most cases, legally) justified state violence has to be proportionate - in the technical rather than the popular sense of the word.

A just, legal war has to cause the minimum possible casualties. Killing a suicide bomber or a gunman on a killing spree is justified only if that is the only way to stop more deaths.

Killing someone who you already have under lock and key can never be proportionate under these tests and hence is not a legitimate use of state violence.

To say that the death penalty is merely the ultimate extension of the state's use of violence to enforce the law is not an answer. Many forms of extremism are simply accepted ideas taken to an extreme conclusion. By this line of argument almost anything can be justified.

8/11/2005 04:21:00 pm  
Anonymous soru said...

_Killing someone who you already have under lock and key can never be proportionate under these tests and hence is not a legitimate use of state violence._

That's a perfectly reasonable argument for giving potential extraditees the option 'if you prefer not to risk trial in your own country, here's a nice safe jail cell'.

Which is, of course, the policy commonly referred to as 'detention without trial' or 'the UK's own Guantanamo'.

8/11/2005 05:17:00 pm  
Blogger David Ham said...

Soru: Countries like France and Germany with prohibitions on deporting their own nationals have rules which allow those nationals to be tried in their own country for crimes they can't be deported for.

Since we have the (relatively new) jurisprudence prohibiting deportations in this case then there is a case for compensating extra-territorial jurisdiction.

However, locking people up on the word of countries like Jordan (and despite Sean's comments, Jordan is not a nice country with a fair and independent judiciary) or on "reasonable suspicion" based on secret evidence from the intelligence services is asking for miscarriages of justice with all of the negative effects for the individuals and society which go with that.

Oh, and a foreign national in these circumstances is no more or less human than a British citizen and is therefore just as deserving of basic human rights like a fair trial. In that respect the law lords were bang on target.

8/11/2005 06:05:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

Ha ha ha. Very funny NM.

No, really, genuinely amusing - I did go off the handle on that shot-bomber thing, didn't I? hmm... you were right and I was wrong.

However I think I have already tipped the hat to you on that one - so you can stop gloating.

As for the not-handing-over-people thing until we are sure they are going to get nice toilets in their foreign jails.. I think foreign nationals should be handed over to friendly foreign countries if there is the usual prima facie case they have committed a crime.

Whether they are then executed is up to the state involved. Who are we to lecture? Or decide for them?

BTW, I don't seem to remember such liberal bleating when Pinochet was being chased around the shop. Don't recall many people saying 'oh will he get a free trial... and what about those hard beds in the prison? He's eighty-six!'

On execution in general I think we just disagree. I suspect you see it as an absolute moral wrong, and fair enough. I disagree. I think it is something a state sould dispense with as much as possible, but there are cases and times... war.. terrorism. genocide... when it might be justifiable.

8/11/2005 06:39:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Heh... Well, you over-reacted to start with, but at least shifted as the facts became known - unlike some I've had the misfortune of reading on various less than delightful blogs. And hell, your final point was more than fair.

8/11/2005 06:56:00 pm  
Blogger David Ham said...

Well, the Lord Chancellor has just gone on Today to say that the law needs to be changed to allow deportations where the Home Secretary feels that national security outweighs the risk to the individual of torture and death. Leaving aside the track record of home secretaries on individual freedoms, this has got to be one of the more dumb moves which has been suggested.

The reason is that it can't actually work. The cases which prohibit deportation are from Strasbourg. If the government passes that sort of legislation then it'll just result in more long litigation as potential deportees take their case all the way to Strasbourg. Unless, of course, the UK was planning on leaving the Council of Europe, which seems pretty unlikely.

8/12/2005 08:28:00 am  

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