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Monday, December 26, 2005

Deutschland Geht Zur Holle [Politics]

That means, "Germany go to hell".

In 1985, Hezoballah terrorists hijacked TWA flight 847. On board was an American navy diver named Robert Dean Stethem. They held the passengers hostage for 16 days, and they murdered Stethem. According to eyewitnesses, they tied Stethem's hands and feet, and beat him, kicking him until they had broken many of his bones. Then they beat him with the butt of a pistol, and finally shot him dumping his body onto the tarmac. The U.S. Navy honored later Stethem by naming an Aegis guided missile boat after him.

One of the terrorists was later caught in Germany. Mohammad Ali Hamadi was caught in Frankfurt with explosives in his luggage. Germany denied the U.S. request for extradition, on the usual grounds that Hamadi may be executed by us barbarous, backwards Yankees. Instead, Hamadi was tried in Germany and sentenced to life imprisonment.

Europeans have a history of refusing to execute men who have fully earned it. Three of the most famous examples are Napoleon, Hitler, and Lenin. What troubles could have been avoided if they had been hanged? How many lives saved?

Following this historic pattern, Germany has released Hamadi from prison, after serving 19 years of his life sentence. I suppose he helped out in the kitchen, or something, and was pronounced reformed.

President Bush, please close all U.S. military bases in Germany. Move our troops to locations where our allies treat us with respect. Poland, for example. Let the Germans defend their own country. Amerikaner heraus!


ericgp said...

Killing people to teach others that you're not supposed to kill people is outright idiotic. You obviously don't agree with this sentiment, but that leaves you and the other 50% of America, versus the rest of the civilised world, who at this point in time, has grown beyond that outdated savage perspective.


Big Ford Fan said...

I disagree, killing bastards like this may give pause to the next batch.

As for the rest of the civilized world, Fuck Em. If it wasn't for the "Barbaric Americans" they would be speaking Russian or Chinese.

Even the Lord says "An eye for an eye."

Revenge is a valid reason to execute cowardly terrorists.

The Auto Prophet said...


"Killing" is not inherenetly evil. "Murder" is. There is a difference.

Executing a murderer is justice. It punishment and self defense. Executing a murderer is not murder.

The Auto Prophet said...

Also, do you think it is OK to release a murderer, who was caught trying to smuggle explosives (for another massacre, no doubt) after 19 years of a life sentence? Shouldn't a life sentence mean "until you die of old age"?

Anonymous said...

The death penalty is rooted in Biblical values that our country was founded on. It is the "progressive" foward thinking other half that wish to abandon these foundational values. Those same people who want to stop using the word "Christmas".

It is always ok to try and save some killer that murdered someone elses family member. It is like Sean Penn going over to visit with the killer - Saddam Husein. Saddam should be executed for the thousands he has murdered. Thankfully Hitler killed himself. Germany would have no doubt let him out of prison by now.

The death penalty is meant to punish for hateful and cruel crimes and as a deterent for future would be killers. When you elect to beat some man to death and dump him on some tarmac then you gave up your right to life. The government bears the sword to execute justice.

As a Texas native - I am proud that my state still uses that authority judiciously and regularly.

Ari said...

'"Killing" is not inherenetly evil. "Murder" is. There is a difference.'

But killing might always be morally wrong. This is not to say that it cannot be justified, but it might just be intrinsically wrong.

An example might be the following:

You are in prison and you are dying of a terminal disease and you will pass away tommorow. Your cell mate is a terrible human being, a convicted serial rapist. You live in Europe where the death penalty is outlawed, but you beleive that this man is scum. He has no family, friends, supporters, he is a true drain on society, wasting its money as he sits in jail for life. You have a powder that you can slip in his food, giving him a heart attack. No one will ever find out he was poisoned, you will die tommorow anyway so you will face no consequence, and like I said before, he will not be missed. So, should you poison the man? I say no, because it is morally wrong. Even though the man might not be missed, I feel that killing is always wrong.

Now, with that said, its not that killing cannot be justified. For example, self defense, in the defense of another innocent, in war where its you or them, etc... one can even make cases for monsters like the serial rapist in the above example, or people like Hitler, Stalin, or Saddam Hussein. But just because it can be justified with those examples or even with 'an eye for an eye' it can still be the case that killing is always wrong.

A good way to think of it is to assign positive and negative values to actions one can do in life. The act of killing anyone might have a value of -100. If you kill in the defense of an innocent person, that act might carry a value of +200, for a net +100 value. But in the example above since there was no other reason than you not liking the prisoner, it might be -50 (after all, the man was scum.) This is my point.

However, this post really has no point with regards to capital punishment. I really don't have a strong opinion on it one way or the other. Everytime I hear that an innocent was executed, I lean towards banning capital punishment. However, when it comes to people like Tookie Williams, I say let 'em fry. But there has to be a moral distinction with regards to killing.

Just my 2 cents.

The Auto Prophet said...

Ari, a long a serious comment. Happy Hanukkah (or, perhaps, Chanukkah), BTW.

There is definitely a difference between an individual killing someone, and the state doing so. In your example, you ask, "what if you could kill a guilty man, and get away with it, would that be moral?".

The answer is, no. Not in a civilized society, which prohibits personal retribution such as duelling, honor killings, etc. The justice system judges the accused, and takes action on behalf of the victims and society.

I believe that capital punishment, is not terribly effective as a deterrent in its present form (12 years of free meals, exercise, TV and library books)in the U.S. But in general, it is the right thing to do. Murderers should be killed to protect society, to deter other murderers, and to provide retribution and justice to the victims. "Whoever sheds man's blood, his blood will be shed by man, for God made man in his own image."

Ari said...

"But in general, it is the right thing to do. Murderers should be killed to protect society, to deter other murderers, and to provide retribution and justice to the victims. "Whoever sheds man's blood, his blood will be shed by man, for God made man in his own image.""

This is justification, but it could still be that to kill is intrinsiclly wrong. While God made man in his own image, he also said "You shall not murder" and its noted that us Jews make a huge distinction between murder and killing. From wikipedia:

"You shall not murder"
The Hebrew word is unambiguously murder; kill is a mistranslation. The Hebrew Bible makes a distinction between murdering and killing, and explicitly notes that murder is always a heinous sin, while killing is sometimes necessary, and in these cases just in the eyes of God. Thus, Jews take offense at translations which state "Thou shall not kill", which Jews hold to be a flawed interpretation, for there are circumstances in which one is required to kill, such as if killing is the only way to prevent one person from murdering another. Another case is killing in self-defense.

To me this implies that there is an intrinsic wrongness with the taking of a life, no matter who's life it is, but when necessary, it must be done. I'm not terribly religious, but I do consider myself a God fearing man, and as such, take such an interpreation to heart. This is why I say I'm on the fence when it comes to capital punishment.

However, you say that it is ok for society to do the deed. However, gonig down the ladder, it will always be an individual who does the dirty deed. Can 'Society' ask him to do an intrinsically wrong act? Thats a big question and I am too young and too naive to be able to answer that.

P.S sorry for the long winded posts. I'm writing a final for ethics and I'm trying to avoid work like the plague!

And Happy Chanukah to everyone!

sh said...

I'm writing a final for ethics...

LOL, Ari - keep going and you'll be able to cut and paste from here.

Agreed, life-taking is wrong, but it is necessary and allowable when all indications of trial proceedings conclude a "high-handed" (premeditated or animalistic) act of murder.

In this case, Golda Meir's words, "There will be peace when the Arabs love their children more than they hate others."

Anonymous said...

Sadly, it's pretty obvious that the Arabs, or more to the point the Muslims, of the world will never love their children more than they hate others (virtually everyone else, and many co-religionists of the wrong "stripes" even).

I fully agree that we should pull ALL of our military bases out of Germany.

How about it, Mr. Bush? Oh, and make sure to tell the German public exactly WHY their economy is losing billions of dollars per year and the Poles are gaining it.

Of course, writing to Volkswagen or Audi or Mercedes-Benz or Daimler-Chrysler and saying "hmm, don't expect me to be visiting or buying at any of your dealers any time soon... I guess we Americans know who our friends are" might strike a nice chord too.

Plus, not forgetting the Germans (and the French - they'll sleep with anyone for money too) constantly trash our nation, our judgement, our President - and I'm not even Republican - yet they have no qualms about selling arms to Iraq even when such things are illegal per the UN, you know - the food for oil scandals? Also, the Germans, French (and Russians) are sending military goods to Iraq.

You know, Iraq, the country whose President says Jewish genocide is hunky dory, and the holocaust never happened, plus, I'm sure if he had a few thousand nuke missiles, he'd take out the US too.
Or should I say, ONCE he has some nukes for his current missiles?

Anonymous said...

I agree with your comments.. although I am a Republican. I think you are getting Iraq and Iran confused. It is the president of Iran who would love to kill Jews. But France and Germany both sold to Iraq and probably Iran during the long ten year UN embargo of Iraq.

I have a feeling that most Arabs would love to through stones at my house just because of my last name... Asher.

Those who think Islam is a peaceful religion are deluding themseleves. I am thankful that the US has faithfully defended many countries against terrorists, not just itself. As a Christian, I think we have a responsibility to protect Israel and that means fighting terrorism both here and abroad.

Which means sometimes we will have to use the death penalty.

ericgp said...

First off, I believe that a life sentence, should indeed be a LIFE sentence. I'm not saying to go easy on them, but I do not believe that killing should be used to show that killing is not okay.

As for the "biblical roots" of this country, that happens to be a very shoddy fallacy. There were deists who founded the country, as well as a share of christians, however this country from day one was meant to be free of dominance by or leanings towards a specific belief.

If you insist on stating that it should be the "Christmas" season, etc. for purity's sake, then Christmas should dump the Yule Log, the Yule Tree etc as they belonged (and still do) to Pagan cultures that preceded them for thousands of years. This country doesn't belong to any specific religion's people, so stop trying to pass off a groups desire as the populaces history. Stating a falsehood over and over doesn't make it any more of a truth.


John B said...

Re: "The U.S. Navy honored later Stethem by naming an Aegis guided missile boat after him."

That I didn't know, congrats to the navy. On a related topic, CBC Newsworld (all news channel of CBC) recently broadcast One Day in September on the Munich massacre. The documentary's producer made a valid claim that Germany acquiesced to the terrorists and helped stage a hijacking of a Lufthansa jet shortly after Munich. The hijackers demanded the release of the lone captured terrorist which the Germans readily agreed to. The Germans thought they would be subsequently left alone.

See Churchill and feeding the crocodile.

sh said...

Rough men

There's a character trait that's decided by fate
Comes (sadly) to many, far too faint, far too late.
They won't face the aggressor, stand up to his ire
They have not the will to fight his fire with fire.
So they bend over backwards to see all sides as fair,
Till they're faced with dragon breath fire in their hair.
Like our brethren in France, who'd know better than we,
Yet seem never to learn, seem doomed never to see.

Yes, it seems there are some who're determined by fate,
To possess not the courage to step up to the plate,
Who shrink from all threat because nothing's worth war.
But how can they know lest they've been there before?
Thank God some have courage, the will, yes, the grace,
To stand for the shirkers, stand strong in their place.
Thank God we have stalwarts who'll stand for us all,
Who will rise to the challenge at their nation's call.

The faint-hearted, who fear, whose reaction is flight,
Have no comprehension of those who will fight.
To hide their own trepidation they attempt to demean
The rough men, who defend them, as barbaric, obscene.
Yet these rough men stand ready, hard weapons to hand,
To put placaters behind them, draw a line in the sand,
To preserve for the peaceniks what they won't defend,
So their own unearned freedom won't perish, won't end.

To appeasers, rough men are coarse government tools.
To rough men, appeasers are dumb delusional fools.

Russ Vaughn
2d Bn, 327th Parachute Infantry Regiment
101st Airborne Division
Vietnam 65-66

Anonymous said...

New reaserch suggests that the death penalty may actually engender murder.

“The dozen states that have chosen not to enact the death penalty since the Supreme Court ruled in 1976 that it was constitutionally permissible have not had higher homicide rates than states with the death penalty, government statistics and a new survey by The New York Times show.

Indeed, 10 of the 12 states without capital punishment have homicide rates below the national average, Federal Bureau of Investigation data shows, while half the states with the death penalty have homicide rates above the national average. In a state-by- state analysis, The Times found that during the last 20 years, the homicide rate in states with the death penalty has been 48 percent to 101 percent higher than in states without the death penalty.”

-New York Times

So the question of Morality seems to be a moot point.

Why instate a policy that just leads to more killing?

Anonymous said...

So the question of Morality seems to be a moot point.
Why instate a policy that just leads to more killing?

You mean like abortion?

Anonymous said...

"You mean like abortion?"

Where did that come from? The previous abortion comment seems inappropriate. Incidentally, I’m pro-life but the topic was clearly capital punishment. People only switch topics like that when they are loosing the debate.

Capital punishment is wrong (and ineffective) and so is abortion.

Sometimes we must resort to war (the examples are obvious). We should never shirk from our responsibilities to defend our nation and allies.

But executions are never necessary. We choose to execute to make us feel better. It’s very selfish.


Ari said...

"But executions are never necessary."

Is this true? You make it seem that you think that killing is sometimes necessary, as in the example of it being necessary to go to war. It seems wrong to say that it is always unecessary to execute someone. I can think of many people who deserve to be killed. While it may be wrong to kill (see my previous posts) I don't see it being the case that it is always unecessary.

After all, while one can argue against abortion by saying that the "person" (or whatever you want to call him/her/it) is innocent and does not deserve to die. But this can not be the case for a guilty (and let's for the moment say the person is indeed guilty) that a guilty person who has done something so heinous, he no longer deserves to live.

Like I said before, I think killing is always morally wrong, but that does not exclude necessary killing. And I certainly think that executions can sometimes be necessary.

Again, I have no strong opinion one way or the other. My feelings on the subject change daily. So I'm playing a sort of devil's advocate here.

Anonymous said...

So, if a man killed another man with a stone. That would be murder.

And if 12 men killed another man with stones, that’s murder too.

But if 12 men vote that a man DESERVES to be killed, and then they hire a professional to do it, and pay the professional with taxes collected from the people, and let some people watch, that’s an execution?

I’ll amend what I said before. War doesn’t make killing OK. I just don’t know how to stop war when there are leaders instigating conflicts all over the world. But stopping executions, at least in this country, is easy. Just legislate an end to capital punishment.

I also think you’re mixing up what people DESERVE with what it is NECISSARY that they receive. I meet people every day that deserve a swift kick in the a**. That doesn’t mean it’s necessary that I give it to them.