Indonesian National Police chief, General Satanto, chairman of the National Narcotics Agency(BNN) says execution of traffickers on death row should be speeded up because the only thing that will teach drug offenders of the folly of engaging in drugs is to be killed. Of course, if they are killed, they really can’t change their behavior.
General Satanto said: “Drug traffickers must be executed immediately as a warning. That is why the BNN is coordinating closely with the Attorney General’s office which is responsible for the executions.” According to the general, putting them in prison doesn’t do much good because all they do is transform a nice pleasant jail into a center of drugs. “International drug trafficking syndicates have been controlled from jails. Imprisonment has failed to stop drug cases.”
There are now 72 people on death row awaiting execution and only 3 drug traffickers have been killed. Drug cases rose from 17, 355 in 2006 to 22,630 in 2007. If the history of prisons and crime has any relevance to the general, there is absolutely no evidence that crime goes down if more are executed. Has he considered legalizing drugs or education as alternatives?
Today marks the 45th birthday of Mikhail Khodorkovsky, former head of Yukos, who had the audacity to politically challenge former president Putin, and, in so doing, was deprived of his company and sentenced to an eight year term on trumped up charges of tax-evasion and fraud. He has now reached the half way point of his prison sentence and according to Russian law, a prisoner can appeal for early release based on his good behavior. Prison guards have tried on several occasions to claim Khodorkovsky had caused problems but all of their charges were discounted by courts of law.
Many human rights groups hope President Medvedev will order the release of the former head of Yukos, both in the name of justice, and in the hope by so doing he establishes himself as an independent leader not under the control of Putin. There were rallies in several parts of Russia to celebrate the birthday of one whom many consider an individual who was fighting for a more democratic Russia.
In the genre of science fiction a common theme is the presence of a foreign entity which compels people of the world to unite because only by forgetting what separates them will they be able to halt the invasion from outer space. The city of Jerusalem is now the scene of Muslims, Jews, and Christians working together in order to stem the tide of a common enemy– gays and lesbians. The annual gay parade next week has aroused the fury of religious right wing fundamentalists who regard the very thought of gays and lesbians as an abomination and anathema to core Biblical beliefs. The High Court of Justice ruled gays and lesbians have a right to march and this event will be guarded by 2,000 police who hope to ensure there is no violence along the four city block march.
Gays and lesbians insist they have the right of free speech and the march is a symbol of tolerance and pluralism. Ariel Atla, a resident told the Jerusalem Post, “there is no reason to make problems–there are enough problems without them.” However, Olga Biyudin, who works in a bank, argued, “Jerusalem is for all the people in the world.”
The anti-gay parade organization proves that Jews and Muslims can cooperate and work together since all they need is a common enemy. The trick is creating a common good that would bring together these diverse groups. Anyone have one?