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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Tariq Aziz: Political Prisoner

Today's Indie reports:

Boris Johnson is fuming about a police investigation into how he became the owner of a red leather cigar case that once belonged to Saddam Hussein's former deputy Tariq Aziz. Mr Aziz has bigger things to worry about than the loss of a cigar case. Captured by US troops in April 2003, he has spent almost five years in prison without trial.

The neocons and their 'liberal' interventionist allies assured us that the Iraq war was about spreading human rights and democracy. Well, I don't know about you, but one of the key aspects of human rights for me is that people are not held for long periods in prison without trial. If there's strong prima facie evidence that he has committed crimes, why hasn't Tariq Aziz (above) been charged?

It's difficult to escape the conclusion that Tariq Aziz is being punished simply because he was a member of a government that didn't kowtow to the US and Britain's demands.

Yes, Aziz was a leading member of a dictatorial government which infringed human rights, but there are lots of leading members of dictatorial governments which infringe human rights who don't get detained by the US and Britain for five years.

Tariq Aziz also committed another 'crime' in the warmongers' eyes: in a series of television interviews for western tv stations in the lead-up to war he made the likes of Richard Perle and co look very stupid. An erudite and eloquent man, he repeatedly denied that Iraq had WMD. He was regularly called a liar by the neocons, but five years on, we all know who the liars were.


Anonymous said...

What can he be charged with? How about smoking in enclosed public places. I'm sure the 'liberators' of Iraq will try and get him on that, if nothing else.

Anonymous said...

Another hanging is in prospect no doubt accompanied by mobile phone cameras and jeering as before. What a legacy. We are indeed in the dark ages.

Anonymous said...

I know that I am coming late to this "party" but I was doing a search for Tariq Aziz and found your website.

Neil, there could be another side to this story. He could be in protective custody rather than a political prisoner. And that protective custody would be that the US is protecting itself from people learning that Tariq Aziz was a student at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey California and well-liked by US government officials in years prior to Saddam losing favor in the US. But you won't find any reference to his education there on Wikipedia or many other places. Tariq Aziz speaks fluent English and might have a lot to say that the Bush White House and others don't want us to hear. Just a thought. Perhaps it might be something that you would be interested in pursuing.