12:07 PM

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Barzan al-Tikriti executed, beheaded

Mister Nizz



More deaths in the Iraqi "Justice" show over the weekend. Barzan al-Tikriti, Saddam's half brother and Awad Hamad al-Bandar, a judge under the Hussein regime, took the long jump over the weekend. Tikriti's death was particularly gruesome:

One of those present, public prosecutor Jaafar al-Moussawi, told the BBC that when the trap door opened, he could only see the rope dangling.

"I thought the convict Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikriti had escaped the noose. I shouted that he's escaped the noose, go down and look for him. I went down a few steps ahead of the others to see: I found out that his head had separated from his body."

(source: BBC, copyright 2007 -- FULL STORY)

Unlike the case of Saddam, where I was somewhat ambivelant about execution, I really was repelled at this event. As I've posted many times, I remain a staunch opponent of capital punishment (not just here in the states, but elsewhere). Here in the states, there are a few states left that allow hanging as a means of execution. The concept behind hanging is that the massive jolt to your spinal column snaps it, causing instant death. Alas, that's only if the knot has been tied by a reasonably experienced hangman. There have been far too many instances where the intended victim has slowly twisted at the end of a rope, gradually suffocating. Or in a case where the victim is too heavy or has dropped too far and too fast, having his head pulled right off of his body, as was the case here-- Tikriti doesn't look very overweight in that photo.

Iraq is a sovereign nation and the justice system is still going through birthing pains, but I hope it isn't going down the path of vengeance. The hangings over the weekend do not inspire confidence.