I'm sure at this point everyone is familiar with the story of Nick Berg, so I won't bother to rehash the disgusting details. But this incident is so offensive that--after five years of being a
The people--and I use that term loosely--who murdered Mr. Berg claim they have done so in retaliation for the abuse of prisoners at Abu Gharib. While the treatment of Iraqi prisoners by American soldiers is both disturbing and disgusting--and, indeed, casts a dark shadow over our stated mission of "liberating the Iraqi people from the terrors of Heussein"--the idea that murdering innocents is somehow a just response is sickening.
News stories have quotes from around the arab world about this issue. Gems like "This was a justified retaliation. The Americans had committed very ugly actions against the Iraqi people in general and Iraqi prisoners in particular," said Mohammed AlBargouti, a 24-year-old security guard in the West Bank city of Ramallah. and While many thought it an appropriate response to what they see as U.S. abuses against Iraqi civilians, Mutaz, a Syrian taxi driver working in the United Arab Emirates, went further: "It must have been a beautiful sight. The Americans deserve even more than this for what they are doing in Iraq. Every American should watch this tape to see what is coming to them, or are they the only ones allowed to kill? are splashed across various wire stories.
Make no mistake: Nick Berg's murder had nothing to do with Abu Gharib--this is just a convenient excuse. It was an simply an excersize in terror, and a display of "power." Anyone who believes there is any justification for this act is simply not human. There is nothing redeeming about al-qaeda. There is nothing holy about al-qaeda. They are nothing more than thugs who claim to believe in god, because it allows them to control others who truly do.
To be fair, there have been some condemnations of this act from surprising quarters: "Hizbollah condemns this horrible act that has done very great harm to Islam and Muslims by this group that claims affiliation to the religion of mercy, compassion and humane principles," the Shi'ite Muslim group said in a statement. There you have it, folks: even Hizbollah, a group that does not shy away from suicide bombers blowing up children agrees that this is beyond the pale.
Personally, my thoughts run thusly: Men who can saw the head off of another human being while chanting "God is good!" have no place on this earth, and should be hunted down and killed for the good of all civilized people. And I, for one, would gladly be the man to pull the trigger.