Saddam trial brings nothing but trouble

By breaking down a few numbers, it is easy to see that Saddam Hussein’s trial has not been going too well. During the last few months, three head judges and two defense attorneys have been killed. The hearings have been few and far between, and witnesses that could have influential testimonies have been out of the country. Insurgent attacks have disrupted the proceedings – the list of problems goes on.

But this week brought the latest roadblock. The Washington Post reported that Tuesday Saddam Hussein’s trial was postponed.

It doesn’t seem like the trials are going very smoothly.

The U.S. government is searching for some sort of legitimacy throughout the entire war in Iraq, and it is hoping that this trial will be what tips the scales. However, Saddam’s trial has done nothing but bring constant chaos to the region.

By attempting to ensure that the tribunal is run completely by Iraqis, the United States has overstepped its bounds. The U.S. government is attempting to use the American law system in Iraq while the country is in the middle of a war. A much better option would have been to send the trial to a U.N. tribunal and take the hearings out of the hands of people who might have suffered under Saddam’s rule. It is possible Saddam’s lawyers may be able to get charges dropped, just because the judges in the trial have a bias against the former Iraqi leader.

The United States should have handed over the trials to outside forces from the beginning. The whole issue of legitimacy has pushed our government to take steps that make the entire trial more and more questionable.

The external forces were just too strong to allow these hearings to proceed without delay. But, just blaming those factors from outside the courtroom does not do the situation justice. There have even been disputes between the judges and the panels within the tribunal.

Between the lawyers, judges and Saddam, there has been too much drama inside the courtroom. Earlier in the trial, Saddam even refused to speak. It’s kind of difficult to carry out a trial when the key defendant denies the trial can even take place.

Until the constant turmoil throughout the region is minimized it will be next to impossible for the people involved in the trial to focus on the task at hand. The United States cannot demand that the trial continues without delays if the area surrounding it is not under control. As the United States persists holding the hand of the Iraqi government and prolongs the deadline for the removal of U.S. troops, Iraqis are not the ones in power.

If they are not trusted with even the simplest tasks within the government, then why allow them to oversee the tribunals?

Regardless of how long these tribunals last, one thing will remain the same: No good can come out of a situation cluttered with so much destruction and violence. Hopefully, when the other top members of Saddam’s regime come to trial, a lesson will be learned.

The above editorial is the consensus opinion of the Daily Kent Stater editorial board