This is a pretty naked, rather exquisite statement: if I was a Christian, I might want to show mercy. Well, no, as a matter of fact. At least, not if you were an American Christian. Apparently, American Christians are quite free to wish death and imprisonment with cheerful exuberance, on anyone they think “dun it”.
You don’t want to bore people like that with issues like evidence and proof. Good heavens! And they don’t really want to discuss compassion or mercy so much as scream hysterically at you that if we don’t beat the hell out of our enemies, they’ll take away our Hummers. It doesn’t seem to matter much if “them” is Al Qaeda, communists, liberals, drunk drivers, Canadians, or Scots.
Yeah, I’m not interested in sounding reasonable at the moment. I’m just a little nauseated by the orgy of hatred and paranoia that dominates American politics right now. And I’m really sick of seeing this coming from people claiming to be Christians.
There’s that division between Europe and America. Americans– at least, the vast majority of them, seem very, very excited about the idea of inflicting a lot of pain and suffering on Abdel Baset al-Megrahi and they don’t seem to care very much about whether he actually did the crime or not. At least, none of the posters or bloggers that I have found have devoted a single line, let alone a paragraph, to the fairly serious claim that his conviction was a frame-up in the first place. The people who do seem aware of the dubious integrity of the case against him see predisposed to approve of the early release any way.
The crucial witness against Megrahi for the prosecution was Tony Gauci, a Maltese storekeeper, who testified that he had sold Megrahi the clothing later found in the remains of the suitcase bomb. At the trial, Gauci appeared uncertain about the exact date he sold the clothes in question, and was not entirely sure that it was Megrahi to whom they were sold.
You get the feeling the Americans don’t really care about the evidence. You get the feeling they suspect that requiring “proof” would merely be a way of hoodwinking them out of the satisfaction of seeing someone suffer and die in order to vitiate their rage.
Sorry– does that sound brutal? Yes, doesn’t it? Yes, yes, yes.
Even Obama, sadly, has joined the chorus. Has U.S. politics reached such a low point now that even a fairly honorable guy like Obama feels utterly compelled to name a few witches?
Just imagine Obama saying: “We do need to acknowledge that the evidence against Mr. al-Megrahi is controversial, to say the least, and we must respect the desire of whacky other countries to actually show something they call “compassion” even to people of Arabic ethnicity….”
Something like that. And the Republicans would be foaming at their mouths with apoplectic rage that an American president missed a valuable opportunity to advocate for cruelty and hatred around the world, instead of just in America.
“I’ll never apologize for the United States of America, ever. I don’t care what the facts are.” Attaboy George! That about sums it up– George Bush Sr. responding to criticism of the U.S. warship Vincennes under Captain William Rogers for shooting down Iranian Air Flight 655 killing over 300 innocent civilians.
Yeah. Do you suppose there are Iranians out there who might be a bit miffed that Captain Rogers– widely regarded by his own military at the time as a “loose cannon” never paid for his sins?
No? What if they know that he received a medal for it?
I suspect that that is the way America really means it: no matter what the facts are. It’s us vs. them, ours vs. yours, and if we need your oil, we’ll damn well take it, thank you.