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Niko
Parole proceedings usually involve the court which made the conviction in the first place and the court, under which jurisdiction the prisoner is actually serving time.

@ Querdenker

President Bush, Vice President Cheney and Secretary of State Rice have all denied that the United States has engaged in torture. Given that, do you accept that the US has not engaged in torture? If not, then could you explain why one should accept the claims of the German government about there being no extradition request or that there was no deal for Frau Osthoff, but not accept the US government's claims that the US has not engaged in torture?

By the way regarding the sentence:

Während der gesamten Haftzeit Hammadis sei kein US-Auslieferungsantrag eingegangen.

I assume that you reject as false the account by Victoria Toensing of her negotiations on behalf of the US government for the extradition of Hamadi as documented at
http://www.digenovatoensing.com/inthenews/Germany_Needs_Fortitude.htm

The initial extradition request had been rejected at the time Hammadi was arrested in Frankfurt. Since Hamadi was tried and convicted of the crimes (hijacking and murder) the request was no longer valid.

As the NYT reports: "At the time of Mr. Hamadi's conviction, the United States expressed satisfaction at the outcome of the case. The White House spokesman at the time, Marlin Fitzwater, said the sentence "satisfies the demand of justice and confirms that no cause or grievance excuses terrorism" and added that the United States expected he would "serve the full sentence in accord with German law."

The NYT also says: "The spokesman, Sean McCormack, vowed that the United States would pursue Mr. Hamadi and bring him to the United States to stand trial in the murder of the diver, Robert Dean Stethem of Waldorf, Md.
"The United States will make every effort to see that this individual, Mohammed Ali Hamadi, faces justice in a United States court for his role in the murder of Mr. Stethem," Mr. McCormack said in the regular department briefing."

Sorry but any extradition request would fail since Hammadi has been convicted of exactly these crimes. Germany cannot allow to help getting him convicted again for the same crime.

German Grundgesetz, Art. 103(3) Niemand darf wegen derselben Tat auf Grund der allgemeinen Strafgesetze mehrmals bestraft werden.

The U.S. knew that of course. That's why they only "expressed interest" in having him but didn't file for extradition later, knowing the request had to be denied.

Ambrose, it says "während der gesamten Haftzeit", not before. The request BEFORE thze trial was denied for reasons which are indeed questionable (to save the lives of German hostages).

As for things government says, I remain sceptical, whether it's U.S. or German. But do you really want me to get into the torture issue again? I may not have the same definition of torture as Mr Cheney or Ms Rice.

Querdenker,

1. I'll leave to international lawyers whether or not extradtion requests ever expire. If they do, I expect we'll see further news reports in the coming days regarding subsequent US extradition efforts.
2. Your double jeopardy claim seems unlikely, given that there were no German victims in the hijacking and that the only basis for Germany trying Hamadi was his accidental arrest in Frankfurt. I'll confidently predict that open indictments against Hamadi for various crimes remain in the US.
3. I have never seen any evidence that you have the least amount of skepticism towards statements made by the German government. You are always consistent with what I hear from the German government/media/academic talking heads that appear on the German news and talk shows that are broadcast over here.
4. Do you think that the release of Hamadi will have any effect on Germany's relations with the US?

Ambrose

1. An extradition request that is denied expires. The U.S. would have to file a new one after that. If the U.S. government was notified in advance of Hamadi's pending release it had time to do so.

2. Double jeopardy does refer to the crime committed and tried. The circumstances are irrelevant. Hammadi was tried for hijacking and murder of a US citizen. Sean McCormack named the same crimes. I would concede though that double jeipardy for now is only legally enforceable in the EU. It does happen that people are extradited after serving time to another country, usually to be convicted of NOT exactly the same thing. But I don't know of a case when Germany has extradited someone to another country to be tried again for exactly the same thing.

3. That's a wrong impression. And as you know the German government did change, too. My nick actually speaks against being consistent with any official opinion. Given the crimes Hammadi had committed I would not have paroled him, but that's not the point. I just wanted to point out that this was absolutely withing German law and procedures (life without parole does not exist in Germany) and that it was ulikely that Hammadis release was connected with Osthof since the parole process must have started before Osthof was kidnapped. And the average time "lifers" with "besondere Schwere der Schuld" is between 17 and 21 years. The longest time a terrorist has ever served in Germany was 26 years.

4. Not likely since nobody has an interest in negative effects.

Querdenker,

1. I'll stay with my impression with regarding your comments. When you do say something that does differ from the German elite's thinking, I'll gladly acknowledge it.

2. Your claim that Hamadi would have been tried on the exact same charges in the US is pure speculation. In any event, it seems to be a remarkable exercise in extraterritoriality for Germany to have tried a Lebanese citizen for the murder of a US citizen outside of Germany. For that reason, Germany should have given US interests after convicting Hamadi the greatest deference.

2. I'll differ with you on the effect. This could cause real damage to Germany's image here. If the media here bangs the drum loudly about this, there will be an increase in the negative feelings among the US public towards Germany. No matter how thorough an explanation about the majesty of German law one gives, I doubt many here will believe that German government could not have extradited Hamadi to the US if it had wished to do so. The timing of this, with the increased chance of the American public overlooking this because of Christmas, is, I'm assuming you'll state, just a coincidence. And even if this is ignored, I doubt that this will increase the Bush administration's desire to be more receptive to any requests that Chancellor Merkel will make.

I'm just quoting what McCormack said. The State Department has conceded it knew about the release early, yet nothing was done. "Letting your views know" is not anything that can be worked with legally.

You insist that "Germany" (or the German government) pushed for his release, but you have no proof for it, just speculation. Hammadi was due for parole review and whether parole is granted or not depends almost exclusively on how his behavior was in jail and whether he is likely to relapse. We have learned little on that yet.

As I said he served a typical sentence for murder. So maybe he could have served a few years longer.

From what I know the initial extradition request was turned down in 1987 because of the death penalty. The US did agree to having him tried in Germany and it was well understood that he would not be extradited to the U.S. after having served his time.

From what I understand the U.S. wasn't interested in going through an extradition process now which would have been problematic and would not only have raised "double jeopardy" questions, but also questions about the current legal treatment of terrorists in the U.S. It was much easier for the U.S. to whine a bit about Germany and then try again in Lebanon.

The German government had no power to stop the parole process. It's entirely in the hand of the independent courts. The prosecution can make its case on behalf of the state, but the judges make the decisions.

Or do you prefer judges who follow the orders of the government? I don't.

@Cousin Dave :"To name one instance: Germany was helping Russian firms selling GPS jammers to Saddam evade Russian export controls as the war was starting. To my mind, that's aiding and abetting."

So a group of persons was doing that...if that means whole Germany is
responsible for that, it would mean America IS the greatest evil in this
world...
Bur it is not a s simple like that - you cannot make a whole country
responsible for something a few do.
But doing so is the amnerican way of life?

@Pogue Mahone
You are hilarious!
As if only Saddam was the problem in Iraq...
You are arrogant and indignitive so perhaps if have to consider that
the american way of life, too.
You do not know how Iraq will develop in the next years given the
religious conflicts in that country, and we will never know how
Iraq would have developed if there were no intervention because
it happened.

America "frees" people -> true (killing the ones to be freed included)
But also you can easily say that America just clean up the mess it left!
What about:
Chiang Kai-shek,
Ferdinand Marcos,
Syngman Rhee,
Schah Reza Pahlevi,
Suharto,
Duvalier,
the armament in iraq and iran,
who delivered the weapon saddam killed the kurd with,
the US supported Saddam,
the US supported AL Quaida (against the USSR),
the US (ISI) supported the taliban.
...
this list will go on, but first I think you should answer to that.
(which you will not, because you either do not know about or yu will
refrain from answering because that won't fit in your view of America)

do you know the term "gerrymandering"?
the election in Afghanistan and Iraq were only held in the 2/3s of
the country that are under control.

And for the fight against terrorism:
You cannot fight terrorists with bombs you will only get more of them.

Greetings the Deffel

Greetings the Deffel wrote above:

"who delivered the weapon saddam killed the kurd with,"

Please tell me Herr Deffel. One or two links to credible sources would be nice.

Danke in advance.

http://www.derriere.de/International/International_04,08,03.htm
"1980-88: Krieg Irak-Iran. Die USA verhindern eine UNO-Resolution zur Verurteilung der Invasion. Bald beginnen die ersten Waffenlieferungen an den Irak. US-Geheimdienste versorgen das irakische Militär mit Informationen über militärische Aktionen Irans. Zur selben Zeit gestatten die Vereinigten Staaten Israel, Waffen an den Iran zu liefern. 1985 beginnen die USA, im Geheimen Waffen an den Iran zu liefern. Mit den Erlösen wird die Contra-Revolution in Nicaragua finanziert (Iran-Contra-Affäre). 1987 gehen US-Kriegsschiffe im Persischen Golf vor Anker, schießen einen iranischen Passagierjet ab, 290 Menschen sterben."

http://krisen-und-konflikte.de/irak/archiv/nzz_saddam_hussein_07032003.htm
http://www.vsp-vernetzt.de/soz/010513.htm
(Original article from New Statesman vom 01.22.01 - John Pilger)

Der Deffel, bedankt

from krisen-und-konflikte
Vor 1990 hatte der Herrscher in Bagdad weltweit willige Helfer

In den siebziger und achtziger Jahren ist der Irak von vielen westlichen Regierungen als Geschäftspartner umworben worden. Frankreich, Deutschland und andere europäische Staaten lieferten massenweise Rüstungsgüter an das Regime in Bagdad.
France, Germany and other European states supplied massive armaments to the regime in Bagdad.
Dabei fand ein gefährlicher Know-how-Transfer im Bereich der ABC-Waffen statt. Nach dem Sturz des Schahs in Iran 1979 unterstützten auch die USA Saddam Hussein.
..und..
Also German arms companies made good business with Saddam Hussein in these years.
Auch deutsche Rüstungskonzerne machten in diesen Jahren gute Geschäfte mit Saddam Hussein. Viele in den Irak gelieferte Waffensysteme waren nämlich deutsch-französische Gemeinschaftsproduktionen. Wegen der restriktiven deutschen Exportregelungen wurden sie über Frankreich vermarktet. Offiziell gab es sonst keine deutschen Rüstungsexporte, doch über verschlungene halblegale oder illegale Wege fanden zahlreiche Rüstungsgüter den Weg in den Irak. Eine deutsche Spezialität war die Lieferung von Dual-Use-Gütern, die für zivile wie auch militärische Zwecke genutzt werden konnten. So lieferten deutsche Firmen etwa Maschinen und Bauteile für die chemische Industrie, die Saddam in seine Giftgasproduktion umleitete. Anfang der achtziger Jahre bauten deutsche Unternehmen bei Samara ein grosses Chemiewerk. Dort sollten nach offiziellen Angaben Pestizide entwickelt werden, in Wirklichkeit wurden aber grosse Mengen kriegstauglicher toxischer Stoffe produziert.
Als der Irak 1983 erstmals chemische Waffen gegen iranische Truppen einsetzte, verurteilte die amerikanische Regierung dies und forderte von den europäischen Verbündeten schärfere Exportkontrollen.
When Iraq used in 1983, for the first time, chemical weapons against Iranian troops, the American government condemned this and demanded from the European allies sharper export controls.
This should interest you.
The first EU citizen to face charges of complicity in genocide and international war crimes went on trial in the Netherlands yesterday accused of aiding Saddam Hussein to gas the Kurds of Halabja almost 20 years ago.
With the links you've given, America doesn't look too bad compared to France & Germany.

Deffel - c'mon now really - are you 14 or 16 or what?

You are using a piece by John fucking Pilger to back up your claims?

Please - Q, anyone, explain to Deffel the amount of credibility Pilger has on ANYTHING related to the USA - exactly none

Pilger or Fisk are pure America haters and propagandists for the enemy - I wouldn't waste 1 min looking at anything they wrote

As for some of the other semi-coherent thoughts you shared - lets see - what is really good

"As if only Saddam was the problem in Iraq..."

Saddam, his family, the Baath party, the state terror apparatus - you get the idea yet?

"You do not know how Iraq will develop in the next years given the religious conflicts in that country, and we will never know how Iraq would have developed if there were no intervention because it happened."

I don't pretend to be able to see the future - what I can see is that your idea that "we don't know" what would happen in Iraq if we didn't depose Saddam is just a way of AVOIDING dealing with any difficult issue in the world

Maybe Saddam would die in late 2003 anyway, get hit by a bus or have a huge monument of himself fall onto him, and then Uday and Quesay would be visited by the 3 ghosts and have Dickensian changes of heart and make Iraq a free and happy place

MAYBE

Maybe the martians would have secretly invaded and done all of the above

MAYBE

How about dealing with most overwhelmingly fucking likely

Iraqi's would continue to suffer and die under Saddam, and then Uday/Quesay and you would continue to not care one bit because absent the USA to blame you don't care about any issue beyond you daily dose of victory gin ( when you get old enough to enjoy it )


As for the last idiocy - yes, I know what Gerrymandering is - I even know its American origin - and I put it to you that the Federal Republic of Germany was an artificial nation from 1949 to 1989 since 1/3 of Germans were excluded from the vote


Boy your a moron, you know that


@deffel,

I must say, that you are probably the most uninformed person ever to have come to this forum. Usually in situations like this, other like-minded people would have come to your rescue. But you are completely alone on your "speculations." Sadly, I don't think that you will learn from your experiences here.

Who supplied Saddam?

Everyone.

Germany - bunkers and chemicals (for weapons - have historic experience in this area)
France - Air defence system, mirage fighter jets
Soviets - Tanks, aka47s
USA - intelligence (particularily against iran - saved his ass - kept the balance)
China - Tanks, AA, guns, etc

Don't be so naive here. You obviously watch TV right? You've seen all the shit that Saddam lost in '91, right? Can you name ONE weapons system that American? One Tank? One airplane? One gun? Nothing. You don't understand how biased German sources are.

Let me just pick a few of your lunacies:

the US (ISI) supported the taliban.

Never happened. The Taliban AND al Quaeda were formed AFTER the fall of the Soviets in Afghanistan. I suggest you read a book called "Taliban - Ahmed Rashid" He's a pakistani. The Taliban were finance by Pakistan AND the Saudis. Not the Americans.

Chiang Kai-shek

Laugh! Who wants to sell totalitarian China weapons now? Schröder! But, no worries, he's now working for the KGB/FSB employer - Putin.

Here's something that YOU should have to deal with: which country was the first country to recognise Solvenia which precipitated the civil war of Yugoslovia which resulted in the death of 300,000 innocent people? Furthermore, this country later claimed that due to their constituion (the one "forced" upon them) prevented them from assiting as many other countries struggled to stop the holocaust. This country is yours, sweet Germany.

You talk about balance and understanding, but people like you are the comlete opposite and dangerous. I speculate that most readers here won't even waste their time answering your sophmoric blasphamies as it will be considered a waste of their time. Many like you have come here, all of them have left!

@Helmut -
The City of Graz has a message board (hint, hint):
http://www.graz.at/cms/ziel/340531/

I'd post "Hasta la vista, Tookie" if I knew the reference wouldn't be lost. ;)


@deffel -
Again my opinion: You can only be proud of what you archieved.

I absolutely, 100% agree. Is it fair to assume that you do not view your country as a collective achievement? Would any other Germans like to offer a perspective on this question?

But the Europeans lived under several cruel dicatorships even before anybody knew there was a continent today known as North and Southamerica.

That comment's a bit Eurocentric. The North and South Americans were very aware of their continents; after all, it was what kept them out of the ocean. You appear to mean that it was Europeans who were ignorant of them.

Where did eg. Germany support Saddam? Because GER did not sent troops? Why should they?

Not helping the Coalition wasn't helping Saddam. That would be just minding your affairs, and not getting involved in something you didn't want to be involved in/support. Anyone could understand that. Undermining the Coalition was helping Saddam. Opposing America's efforts at every step was helping Saddam. A non-stop media blitz of almost exclusively one-sided propaganda during the entire run-up to the war was helping Saddam. Massive protests against the effort was helping Saddam. Sending human shields to Iraq was helping Saddam. When I say "you", of course I don't necessarily mean you personally -- I have no idea what you did -- but I do mean both your country and your countrymen.

who delivered the weapon saddam killed the kurd with

Source, please?

the US supported AL Quaida (against the USSR),
the US (ISI) supported the taliban

1) Bin Laden did have a group of mujahadin resisting the USSR, but al Qaeda didn't exist then. AQ was what Osama decided to do after the Soviets left and he still had all these guys hanging around. Still, even Osama has denied that he ever received US aid.
2) We did support another Afghani group who also fought against the USSR, and elements of that group apparently did later become part of the Taliban, but the Taliban didn't even exist then either. Ergo, we never aided the Taliban.


@Querdenker -
Could you clarify that 15 years thing? I'm not seeing the distinction, unless it's that one way you *are* eligible after 15 years, and the other way you *might be* eligible after 15 years. Is there more to it?

Islam is the official religion of the State and is to be considered a source of legislation.

I'm not aware of Iraq having an official state religion, but Islam is indeed a source of legislation. Iraq had a vigorous national debate over two approaches to this issue - one that held Islam as a source of legislation, and one that held Islam as the source of legislation. Iraq, a predominantly Islamic nation, chose for itself an Iraqi constitution, and when faced with the question of Islam's role (which, by Islam's own nature, any Islamic country will be faced with), it consciously selected the path which best respected the rights of others. Islam in general has a much lesser concern for non-Muslims.

No law that contradicts the universally agreed tenets of Islam, the principles of democracy, or the rights cited in Chapter Two of this Law may be enacted during the transitional period.

That's clearly text from the transitional constitution, not the recently-ratified permanent one, and its purpose is also clear. The transitional period took Iraq from American control under a government of Americans, to a government of Iraqis formed by Americans, to sovereignty under a government of Iraqis formed by Iraqis. I'll say again, Iraq is a Muslim nation; that clause is an assurance that "Crusaders" would not be dismantling Islam while Iraq was under American control, or even American political influence. Iraqis were protected from having their religious rights trampled by the laws of outsiders. There's nothing sinister in that.

@ deffel

This will be my last reply to you. You are young and misinformed, but your youth gives you hope. Good luck in life.

"- I am teased to answer this with your comment about supporting a lesser
evil... ;) <- this mean just kidding"

No, I don't think you are. You have been "educated" precisley what to reflect. You never answered any of my questions, but simply deflected them with more acqusations of America's supposed transgressions. Lock step like a good little socialist. Hate what you do not understand.

"I did not support Saddam. Where did eg. Germany support Saddam?
Because GER did not sent troops? Why should they? America could have
beaten him even without the Brits... GER is part of the NATO, and as long
as Iraq does not attack (Iraq not Saudi terrorists that presumably have
been in Iraq someday...) GER has not to send any troops.
Simple as that."

What do you support? I don't expect a german to take any American's word here on this blog [like me], but why not ask a Kurd, Afghani or Iraqi what does he think of America and their aims. I was in Iraq. I spoke to plenty of aforementioned, there and here in Germany, and what they have told me only confirms my position. What qualifies yours? European media? Spiegel? CNN? Do you realise how many Iraqis have died in the effort to stop the terrorists in the post-Saddam Iraq? Apparently not. You cheerlead from the sidelines those who kill whom you fictitiously care about. You and your false self-righteous citizens disgust me.

Does any german here believe german troops [KSK] are NOT in Iraq? :)
Traumt weiter, du Dep.

Donald Rumsfeld confirmed on camera that it really didn't matter what the Brits did, America would have gone in alone anyway. NO, we did not need the Brits or any other allied troops to perform military operations, the US has the military resources to do pretty much any operation without assitance. The non-American troop deployments are only token sentiments meant to sanctify their countries approval-- HOWEVER this is NOT to undermine non-American/Iraqi sacrifices. Some EU country leaders still have a moral conscious despite populist led governments.

Side note: With the exception of Great Britian, there is no other NATO country that can project military force beyond its borders witout the US. Most NATO countries could barely defend their own borders let alone assist anywhere else. Who needs who in the post Cold War? As the US draws down from Europe, you will see that most european countries simply do not have the budget to support their own military commitments.

http://www.spikedhumor.com/articles/3029/CNNNN_On_The_Streets_Of_America_2.html
http://www.spikedhumor.com/articles/3155/CNNNN_On_The_Streets_Of_America_3.html

Two reports about well informed americans. Must be seen!

Note from David: Funny, indeed.
Too bad they didn't ask Germans about the U.S.... Knowledge of basic facts would be comparable.

Pamela,

Given the current day results, the answer to your question about the lost of American lives in reference to WWII and Germany is NO.

We should have supplied the USSR with all the material support they requried and let them handle it.

Just think they would have gotten the french too.

So yes America does make mistakes.

In other news, Putin kicks out Deutsche Welle, snubs BBC.

We should have supplied the USSR with all the material support they requried and let them handle it.

Just think they would have gotten the french too.

That's a bit vindictive. I think it would have been enough just to make Germany keep France.

@deffel

A world war does mean that the entire world is at war but rather the distances involved are global in scope. Witness that Russia was an ally of North Viet Nam while the US was allied with Korea, Australia, the Philippines and to a lesser extent the other SEATO members. NVN invaded Laos, Cambodia and SVN twice while Iraq invaded Iran and Kuwait. My point was that there are those with attention deficit disorders that seem to have no sense of history beyond 15 minutes. What war is perfect, what war stands up to hindsight. In the South, in the US, people still blame Lincoln for reprovisioning Ft. Sumter thus forcing the So. Carolina militia to fire and force the fort's capitulation leading to a declaration of war by the US Congress. We all thought Iraq had these weapons and many other commenters have noted that Saddam really didn't need these weapons to kill either Kuwaitis, Iranians or his own citizens. I wish that more in Europe could talk to my Vietnamese-American students and hear them describe the fate of most of their relatives when the NVN sent two battalions of T-72 tanks down Hwy 1 in 1975.

After the American Revolution it took us four years to come up with our constitution and we are still amending it. I think that Iraq by coming up with their own constitution in three years is remarkable. I would ask if Germany's constitution is illegitimate because there were foreign troops on its soil, like Iraq, at ratification?

I would like to add, after finally getting the chance to read all the comments that my last post was superfulous and I wish to thank all the other commenters that responded so well to Deffel.

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