Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Primitive Justice

Practically the only news we hear or read out of Iraq is the number of people killed and the way they were killed. These two facts alone do not convey any information of real importance. In order to learn anything meaningful, we need to know why someone or group was killed.

For example, wouldn’t most people feel differently hearing that O.J. Simpson had just died in car bomb than hearing that Billy Graham had just died in a car bomb? I’m sure there are some innocent people being murdered in Iraq. However, I’m just as sure, that many of the people being killed in Iraq are receiving the justice they deserve from previous acts of injustice. Sure it’s primitive justice, but until Iraq has the time necessary to establish a government with consistent credibility, primitive justice is better than no justice.

4 comments:

Buz said...

David,

Not sure where you are coming from or where you are going with this one.

Not really knowing anything but what I have read in the news, that is to say not really knowing anything, I am not sure how you can make this statement.

While there may be some executions out of vengence, I would not go so far as to equate those with justice, primative or otherwise.

And, if I only believe half of what I hear in the news, it would appear that many more of the killings have to do with political machinations rather than an eye for an eye.

Unless you have some other sources to substantiate your hypothesis, you have lost me on this one, bro.

Buz

David M. Smith said...

Hi Buz,

That was my point. The news is not telling us what we need to know. We have to read between the lines. I think it is quite reasonable to assume some of the killings are retaliation for other killings. Vigilante justice. I am OK with vigilante justice until a better system evolves.

Rick Cendo said...

My interpretation has been that it is group-based vigilante justice -- the Sunnis kill a bunch of Shiites, so the Shiites find a bunch of Sunnis to kill in retaliation, aka sectarian violence. Obviously, that's completely different from individual -based vigilante justice

David M. Smith said...

Hi Rick,

The impression we get from the News reports is that the violence and murder is completely sectarian and completely random. I have no doubt that some of the violence is completely sectarian and completely random just as much of the gang violence in America is sectarian and random. I want to know more of the facts, not just the assumptions of a reporter at an air conditioned desk.

Group based sectarian violence is even more primitive than vigilante justice. It would not be acceptable to me without some tie between those being killed and the perpetrators of violence.