The perverse prism
through which the left views the war in Iraq is crystallised in the news
story that a law firm which made its name defending terrorists in Northern
Ireland is now helping families of Iraqis shot at a checkpoint to mount legal
actions against the American military. Once again the global dimension to
terrorism, and its many apologists, is apparent.
Madden and Finucane, founded by Pat Finucane, the Catholic solicitor allegedly
shot dead by loyalist paramilitaries in 1989, is planning a $15m (£9.5m)
suit in the American civil courts for a family shot at an American checkpoint
last month. This firm has been feted by the British and Irish Governments
as champions of truth and justice! The British media sycophantically takes
their every utterance as gospel, instead of treating it with an appropriate
degree of suspicion, if not outright contempt.
A three-man team from Madden and Finucane met lawyers and “human rights”
groups in Iraq last week. One of the solicitors who compiled a dossier on
the checkpoint shooting, said: "When unarmed civilians are killed by soldiers
it creates resentment which only intensifies the conflict. Our experience
in seeking justice in cases in Northern Ireland is invaluable in similar
situations such as this." What he means is that having been indulged
by successive UK governments afraid to stand against terrorism, his firm
now thinks that the US government will also cave-in. Putting the boot into
Bush earns brownie points within the Irish republican constituency.
The firm represents most of the families of the 13 people killed on Bloody
Sunday in Londonderry in 1972 and is thought to have made a small fortune
from the work. Its lawyers have also advised the three IRA suspects on trial
in Colombia for allegedly aiding terrorist bombers. From Belfast to Bogotá
and now to Bagdad, the forces of law and order are under attack from those
who call themselves lawyers.
It has appeared to skip the minds of these intrepid lawyers that in a battle
zone, the Queensbury rules do not apply. The US troops involved were risking
their lives to liberate a nation from the Saddam diktat but that is reason
in itself for the hard left to find ways to undermine and attack these brave
killings took place on August 7. According to the families of the victims,
the cars in which they were traveling arrived at an American roadblock manned
by the 1st Armoured Division which was raiding a suspected hideout. The car,
containing three men, was riddled with bullets when it failed to slow down,
resulting in the death of Saif Raed Azawi, 21. Ali Hekmet, 31 a passer-by,
also died. A second car containing members of the Al Kawas family was also
shot at, resulting in the deaths of Adel Abdul Kareem, 43; Hadir, 18; Ola,
16; and Mervit, 8. Another child and a pregnant woman survived.
firm concerned said: "The events constitute a grave breach of the Geneva
Convention. Such breaches are commonly referred to as war crimes. We are
currently discussing with legal contacts in America how to pursue a case
for sizeable compensation. That does not overcome the need for an independent
investigation to bring those responsible for these killings to justice."
it is. The US/UK forces of liberation are actually “war criminals.” The total
silence of these legal wannabe human rights champions during the years of
the Saddam dictatorship is evidence of their absolute moral equivocation.
Why didn’t they send a team out to investigate the thousands being slaughtered
by Saddam? Don’t say their dedication to truth and justice is only applicable
when the targets are the US or UK governments?
Where were they when the Taliban brought Afghanistan back to the Stone Age?
The American military argues that under military rules none of the people
at the checkpoint is eligible for compensation for wrongful death because
they stumbled into a military operation. A week after the incident, the commander
of coalition forces, Lieutenant-General Ricardo Sanchez, said the procedure
for setting up "hasty checkpoints" would be changed.
is that US and UK troops are being killed by the Ba’athist debris that has
survived Saddam's fall. When our forces establish checkpoints, they must
not be put in a position where they risk sacrificing their lives rather than
offend left-wing vultures scavenging on the international battlefield.
Vance is a UK-based political commentator. Having previously been the Deputy
Leader of the UK Unionist Party, he decided it is better to be outside the
tent peering in! His web site is A TANGLED WEB.