Friday, April 07, 2006

Justice prevails in Iraq

A year ago, CBS cameraman Abdul Ameer Younis Hussein was shot by US forces while filming the aftermath of a car-bombing in Mosul. He was subsequently arrested for supposedly cooperating with insurgents. After being detained without charge for a year, he was finally brought before a court - and today thzt court threw out all charges against him for lack of evidence. It's good to see justice prevail, but you have to ask why the hell it took so long, and why Hussein was not charged from the outset rather than having to wait a year to find out why he was being held. You also have to ask why he is still in jail - for despite the fact that the charges were thrown out, Hussein was taken back to Abu Ghraib by American soldiers and is not expected to be freed for several days. The excuse is "paperwork", but that simply doesn't wash. Pretty much every other country in the world allows acquitted defendants to walk free from the courtroom, rightly putting justice and the freedom of the innocent before bureaucracy. Iraq should so the same.