Saturday, January 25, 2003

Horrifying Developments

CNN has this story detailing how one Iraqi scientist attempted to gain sanctuary from UN inspectors and WAS HANDED BACK! The man yelled "Save me, save me" in Arabic and forced his way into a UN vehicle. The story has a picture of the man talking with an "unfazed" (CNN's word) UN inspector just before he was dragged by his hands and feet back into Iraqi custody.

I find this horrifying. What could these UN folks have been thinking? The Iraqi is a dead man, after he's been tortured thoroughly; his family faces possible death, too. His friends and coworkers also will be under the Iraqi gun. The UN people didn't even do a cursory interview to see who he was and what information he had in the notebook he carried with him. The CNN article completely avoids any discussion of his possible fate.

What possible justification can the UN folks have? Watch for some press spokesperson come forward to say that the inspectors weren't equipped to handle such unforeseeable circumstances, that they didn't have anyone who could process "non-procedural status changes" and they were respecting Iraqi sovreignty, or some such ass-coverage. If we even hear that much.

I have to say that maybe moral relativism plays a part. Too often, people claim that honor only because it's a high-sounding disguise to cover for their own cowardice and fear. Rather than engage and confront, it's easier to just let them be and hope for the best. That's been the European approach to Iraq and terrorism until the past few weeks. Now that they are starting to find dozens of terrorists hiding all over Europe, planning horrifying things, maybe, just maybe, they'll wake up and start saving lives, instead of throwing them away.

UPDATE: The Saturday evening news is now covering this incident and they are portraying it as a "security threat" (NBC's words) to the inspectors by deranged Iraqis! There is no identification of this man as brave or heroic nor any sympathy shown. And they are still refusing to acknowledge that any Iraqi scientist who talks in private with any UN inspector will likely be arrested by Iraqi security and treated as a possible traitor, and likely tortured for information. The Iraqi presumption has to be that any private conversation has to have been damaging.

My already low opinion of the major media continues to sink. This is making me sick, it really is.

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