Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Accepting the Rule of Law

This link from Instapundit about an Iraqi General arrested for murders and other crimes is important.

I'm not sure if everyone will realize why. I've no doubt that to many this will just seem proof of how impossible things are over there.

They aren't impossible. It's not honest to look at a difficult situation, call it impossible, and excuse ones self from any further corrective action. It's not honest at all.

Democracy is a new idea in most of the middle east. Even more of a new idea, and many times more important than Democracy, is the idea of the Rule of Law.

To be free a nation has to be ruled by LAW, not by whatever leader manages to get to be on top of the heap, even if he or she got there democratically.

In order for democracy to work the people, all of them, have to be confident about what will happen when they don't win an election.

The minority has to trust the Rule of Law.

No, I'm not any kind of lawyer, and I may use words incorrectly but the concept is simple. The Law has to apply to everyone. Our leaders must not be exempt. Our governors, congresspersons, and police chiefs, must not be exempt. And do I need to say that even here in the US this is an ongoing battle? There's a reason that people become so angry when they find that a trooper got in trouble for trying to issue a DUI to the wrong official.

Iraq is hardly unique in having a culture where a position of power is a position of privilege. Saddam kept order through terror and the fact that the military and police certainly *did* kill people. The police aren't trusted. The courts aren't trusted.

But it's just not honest to look at this fact and claim nothing can be done. Something *can* be done and LTC Doug Crissman did it.

The American commander, LTC Doug Crissman, narrowly averted a possible bloodbath today when he intervened, without orders from above, and arrested the General.

People *must* know that the law applies to everyone. It will never perfectly apply, but people have to have confidence that it does apply *most particularly* to those in government, to those in power.

We'll find out more later. I hope it all goes well.


Blogger Ymarsakar said...

Once again it seems that commanders on the ground save the day, while critters back in Washington sit on their seats and talk.

Seems like such an inefficient allocation of resources.

1:20 AM  
Blogger Ymarsakar said...

I have always liked these type of stories, ever since 2003 even. I liked the combination of Iraq and American fighting, war, and political stories. Because even back then, as little as I knew of the art of war and military history, I still understood intuitively that if you wish to save Iraqis in Iraq, you must get those Iraqis to work for or with you. And whatever stories I heard to that effect, I valued, simply because I was curious. I wanted to know how it would progress. badly, goodly, etc.

A lot of the military science fiction I read had to deal with cooperating with indigenous populations. Because in those stories, the good guys NEVER have the firepower superiority of the United States, so they had to find allies and friends.

4:24 PM  

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