You Call This A Victory?

John Walker Lindh, the superdufus Talibastard has pleaded guilty to aiding the Taliban. His sentence: 20 years in prison. Already the Justice Department is calling this a major victory in the war on terror.

Let’s face it, this is no major victory. At best it’s a very minor one. 20 years is a slap on the wrist for a man who committed treason and took arms against his country. Granted, Lindh will cooperate with authorities by giving intelligence on Taliban and al-Qaeda operations, but it’s unlikely that he has any intelligence of real value.

U.S. District Attorney Paul J. McNulty, chief prosecutor in the case, called the pleading "an important victory for the American people in the battle against terrorism. This is a tough sentence. This is an appropriate punishment and this case proves that the criminal justice system can be an effective tool in the fight against terrorism."

This is not a victory against terrorism, what terrorist is going to be dissuaded by a twenty year prison term? Death isn’t enough to dissaude these people. The fact that the 8 most serious charges against Lindh were droppd, this is hardly a victory worth celebrating.

The only positive aspect is that the justice system was able to deal with a known terrorist and get a conviction, even if it was a slap on the wrist sentence.

As for Lindh, in 20 years expect his book deal, talk show appearances, and the usual media attention. Unfortunately for the rest of us, his treason will probably never be acknowledge as such by the nation he betrayed.

UPDATE: James S. Robbins in The Corner states that the plea deal
will avoid a messy media circus
over the case. That does make the decision considerably more palatable. Also, there are some good comments for and against this decision that are worth reading on the comments link below.

4 thoughts on “You Call This A Victory?

  1. Treason? Murder? Betraying his country?

    John Walker Lindh wasn’t a traitor- he was a stupid fucking kid. Hell, I’ve had enough fantasies about running off to Saudi Arabia and becoming a Sufi that I can’t blame the idiot for what he did. Treason is for people who put the country in danger- not for dumbass twenty year olds who go play soldier.

    Give the kid a break.

  2. The big difference to me is that he joined the Taliban and took arms against Americans. There’s nothing wrong about going off to the Middle East to learn about Islam, but joining a foreign army is another thing. The death penalty would have been too harsh, but I don’t think that a life in prison or permanent expulsion from the United States would have been too out of order.

    Then again, 20 years in prison for him won’t be a walk in the park. He’s going to need constant supervision or he’ll be toast in federal lockup. I’ll be willing to cut him some slack when he starts publically recanting the Taliban and al-Qaeda.

    (BTW, I’ve always found the Sufi sect of Islam fascinating myself. They seem to have a very interesting and spiritual view of the universe. The fact that the Taliban and the Wahhabis are so intent on getting rid of them is also a plus in my book.)

  3. True. I’m fine with 20 years… it seems like a fair punishment. Killing the bastard (who, as far as we know, never killed anyone during his stint with the Taliban) seemed far too harsh. I would have thought kicking him out of the country would have been more appropriate though… instead we have to waste taxpayer dollars supporting him. 🙁

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