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Jihadi John – another extra-judicial killing, this is wrong

Tom Winnifrith
Friday 13 November 2015

Don’t misunderstand me: Jihadi John, the Brit who cut folk’s heads off for ISIS was a bad man. The world is no worse off for his death. He will now be discovering that there are no 72 virgins and I rather hope that he is burning in a Judeo-Christian hell for eternity. Having said all of that… 

The man was executed without trial. The US – our ally in our idiotic Middle Eastern meddling – targeted him and executed him from the air without trial, no doubt with the blessing of the British Government. Should we really be celebrating the fact that State can execute its own citizens and is doing so repeatedly without trial?

Does this not set a rather dangerous precedent? I shed no tears for Jihadi John. But state organised extra judicial executions are bad things.  They were bad things when we executed Irishmen in Gibraltar thirty years ago. Yes those Irishmen were members of the loathsome IRA but as British citizens they deserved a trial. 

We should not be celebrating any such killing. Whilst today’s opponents are ISIS, a couple of years ago the same fighters we execute today were receiving armaments from us as they took on the man we then considered the spawn of all evil, that is to say President Assad.

Who is to say what grouping this Government or any future Government will consider such an enemy of the State that he or she can be executed without trial? The precedent is now clear. Together with the Americans we are now systematically executing our own citizens across the Middle East.

Just think for a while. Does this really make us safer back in Blighty? Or will these actions encourage other Islamofascists to take up arms against us? If you think that martyrdom brings you 72 virgins, death is no deterrent. And do you really enjoy living in a country where the state glories in how it can – at will – execute its own folk?

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About Tom Winnifrith
Tom Winnifrith is the editor of When he is not harvesting olives in Greece, he is (planning to) raise goats in Wales.
[email protected]
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