There has been much discussion about where to send the two captured ‘Beatles’ – the dual national terrorists Alexanda Kotey and El Shafee Elsheikh captured on the Syria/Iraq border. The answer seems to me to be simple – hand them back to the Kurds, give them a fair trial and shoot them, nicely of course.
The ISIS ‘Beatles’ should not be confused with Liverpool’s John, Paul, George and Ringo. (As it happens I passed by the Cavern Club in Liverpool, where the Fab Four started, this week.) So far as I know neither Kotey nor Elsheikh even possesses a guitar, let alone knows how to play one.
These ‘Beatles’ are also working for German Intelligence, although I doubt they’re smart enough to know it. The DVD targeted the real Beatles, setting up the disgraceful assassination of John Lennon in December 1980. The real Beatles also never beheaded anybody. They were into peace and love, which was nice. They also got MBEs – not even the current Cabinet Secretary, Sir Jeremy ‘von’ Heywood, would be mad enough to organise MBEs for these two clowns.
The MSM, typically, have been confused, describing Kotey and Elsheikh as “British”. Elsheikh is a Sudanese national, who presumably obtained asylum in the UK on a fraudulent basis, later obtaining nationality. I’m not sure about Kotey, but I’m fairly confident he has another nationality.
Putting aside the issue of dual nationality, the Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, has reportedly stripped both of their British nationality. That must be right, although Rudd is rarely known for doing the right thing, no offense intended.
The Laws of War
The Laws of War are fairly clear. When war criminals are caught – and executing civilians without trial amounts to a war crime – they can be tried by a competent military or civilian court. The death penalty for major war crimes is in accordance with international norms.
At the end of World War II the Allies organised International Military Tribunals in Nuremberg and Tokyo to try captured German and Japanese war criminals. British and American war criminals who had worked for the Abwehr, such as Sir Edward Bridges and General Eisenhower, were let off of course.
Lawyers have long questioned the legitimacy of the Nuremberg and Tokyo War Crimes Trials. However, since each of the victorious Allied powers could have tried the defendants separately, it is difficult to see why their power to do so could not be delegated collectively to an international tribunal.
The trials were a farce, particularly the Nuremberg trials, with the DVD’s Generalleutnant Erwin von Lahousen, being called as a witness for the prosecution. Nobody told the judges that the key driver of the Holocaust, Admiral Wilhelm Canaris, was not only alive and well, but was von Lahousen’s boss. (I can now see why Lord Elywn-Jones, one of the prosecutors at Nuremberg, told me many years later that he thought the trials were a mistake.)
BTW, if you doubt that Canaris survived the war, here is a post-war picture of him, taken in the late 50s (officially in 1944), side by side with a real 1944 photo, with apologies for the lack of cropping:
There is no reason at all why the Kurds, who tend to be nice people, could not give Kotey and Elsheikh a fair trial and shoot them. I’m sure it would be nicely done, with an imam in attendance and a last cigarette. I’m not saying they should be put up against a wall and shot, of course – they might damage the wall. Posts are far better, or a pile of sandbags.
There is no Kurdish state, but the Kurdish paramilitary forces are fighting alongside the Allies and are observing the Laws of War. I see no particular reason why they do not have jurisdiction to try and execute any war criminals they capture.
For some reason these two clowns have been handed over to you guys. I’m not sure what you’re expected to do with them. If I were you, I’d hand them back to the Kurds and ask to send an observer to their trial.
If they are to remain in US custody the sensible suggestion has been made that they be sent to Gitmo, where I’m sure they would be humanely treated. Executing them would be cheaper and cause fewer difficulties in the long run, however. It would also have greater deterrent effect and would encourage jihadists not to go around beheading people, even journalists.
There has also been a rather silly suggestion that they be sent to the International Criminal Court in The Hague. I’m not sure that the ICC actually has jurisdiction. There is no state called Kurdistan, so by definition it can’t be a party to the Rome Statute setting up the ICC.
The UK is a state party to the Rome Statute, but since these guys are no longer British citizens and have lost any right to enter the UK, where they are not wanted, we’re out of it. These guys aren’t British in any meaningful sense of the word, although one of them is said to support Queen’s Park Rangers. That doesn’t make you British however.
Neither Sudan nor Syria is a state party to the Rome Statute. In any event the Hague court has acquired a reputation for unfairness and is tainted by the assassination of Slobodan Milosevic, albeit that he was a defendant before the ICTY. ‘Slobbers’ was not exactly a nice man, but he should not have been murdered just because the prosecution had run into difficulties.
Overall, I prefer handing the two ‘Beatles’ back to the Kurds, along with a copy of “Firing Squads for Dummies”, if there is such a book.
Still not buying the single-shooter theory. The number of shooters isn’t the only issue that hasn’t been resolved. A number of Douglas students have started a rather silly campaign, no offense intended, to impose greater bureaucracy by way of background checks.
Whilst I sympathize with the students over the tragic loss of their fellow students and members of the school faculty, I fail to see, with respect, how stricter background checks would prevent future school massacres.
In the first place, Cruz should not have been permitted to acquire a firearm under existing law. Since federal background checks were waived in his case, why would they not be in the case of future school shooters?
Secondly, given that there were other shooters, what relevance does the waiver of Cruz’s background checks have? Furthermore it has not been established that the ammunition Cruz used was acquired legally. It was probably supplied to him by his control. We also don’t know who drove Cruz to the school – it’s unlikely he drove himself.
Thirdly, it has now been established that the school had an armed guard, who failed to enter the school in response to shots being fired. (It can hardly have been coincidental that the shootings were timed whilst the guard was outside.) Had the guard engaged the shooters the death toll might have been much lower. That may be harsh on the poor guard, but I respectfully associate myself with the American President on this. The guard was there to protect the students and he didn’t do his job, sadly.
What concerns me is the speed with which the student’s campaign was got off the ground. It takes time to organise political campaigns, not least to agree basic aims. There is evidence that these students are working with the notorious Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Congresswoman for Florida’s 23rd Congressional District, fairly adjacent to Stoneman Douglas High.
This begs the question of what did the Congresswoman know, and when? Put shortly, did she have advance notice of the atrocity? For the avoidance of doubt I am not saying that she did. I am merely asking the question, given that we do not have a credible timeline.
The Democratic Party have rushed to take political advantage of these shootings, hoping to water down the Second Amendment. The party has a lengthy record of involving itself in political violence – witness LBJ’s involvement in the brutal assassination of President Kennedy. Readers will not have forgotten the assassination of Commerce Secretary Ron Brown in the staged CT-43A crash in Croatia in 1996. It’s still unclear who in the White House sanctioned Brown’s murder and who knew about it in advance.
Wasserman Shultz was chair of the DNC when Obama was President. Presumably she was well aware of Obama’s birth in Mombasa, in what is now Kenya, and his ineligibility for the high office which he held. I know from my contacts with the Democratic Party during this period that senior figures were well aware of the Obama scandal.
Wasserman Shultz is also believed to support the false allegation of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian Federation and has associated herself with frankly hysterical allegations against your President, a decent and honorable man. (I am aware in saying that he met some dubious people in New York in the old days, but how can you live in New York City for years and not meet some dubious people?)
Naturally, since I am suggesting that the Congresswoman might have acted illegally and improperly, I am copying this article to her as a courtesy, and will print or, at least summarise, any response.
The right reaction to the St Valentine’s Day School Massacre is to sack the Director of the FBI, organise an inquiry into the FBI’s role in the recruitment of Cruz by the Frankfurt-based Correa/COREA Group and go after the boys in Frankfurt. It’s also time to lose the FBI from the investigation and put a serious agency in charge, like the ATF, who are good people.
BTW, I haven’t had any complaints from transvestites about my comments last week. For the record, I’ve met some very nice trannies and I have no absolutely no problem about having a tranny in charge of a federal law enforcement agency. As with J. Edgar ‘von’ Hoover, however, the problem comes when the tranny is in the closet along with her dresses.
Follow-up on Rudolf Hess
I’m pleased to say that I had a useful conference this week with my fellow author John Harris, co-author of A New Technical Analysis (2014) and Rudolf Hess: Treachery and Deception (2016). John had been sent copies of my columns on VT by another historian, Peter Padfield.
One of the things to emerge from the conference is that in the last stages of his flight Hess was heading towards a private airstrip large enough to take an Avro Anson, which happened to be at the house of a daughter of the well-known German agent and notorious Liberal, Walter (Lord) Runciman. Disgracefully, Runciman had opposed Winston Churchill’s entirely sensible Naval Estimates in 1914. Moreover on his way to the west coast Hess had flown over Doxford, Runciman’s pile on the east coast. That cannot have been a coincidence – someone at the house no doubt alerted Runciman, who seems to have been with his daughter that weekend, to the fact that Hess was on his way.
The Anson was somewhat lighter than the Bf110 (a landing weight of around three tons, as opposed to six), but I don’t have any particular difficulty with the airstrip being able to take a 110, unlike Dungavel House. However Hess had clearly run out of fuel.
As an intelligence officer it would make sense that Hess had a Plan B. Having been unable to land at RAF Dundonald after Flying Office Cuddie was sortied from Ayr in his Defiant, of course he would want to divert to a landing strip owned by the relative of a trusted German agent. I’ll bet we’ll find that that Runciman had lined up some replacement auxiliary fuel tanks and a few jerry cans of high octane – the good stuff – to see Hess safely on his way again.
It has also emerged that the meet and greet party at Dundonald, or at any rate most them of them, cleared off to RAF Aldergrove near Belfast. I’ll bet they did!
My Reading This Week
This has included Blitzed, by Norman Ohler (tr. Shaun Whiteside, English edition Random House, 2016). This very well-written historical text documents Nazi Germany’s narcotics programs. I wonder how many liberal supporters of the use of methadone in prisons to keep junkies doped up till they get out know that the drug was developed in Nazi Germany?
Methadone wasn’t the only dangerous drug developed in the Nazi period. Ohler concentrates on Pervitin, trade name for a methamphetamine used widely by the Wehrmacht and Luftwaffe. I wasn’t aware that Guderian’s drive through France and the Low Countries in 1940 was fueled by speed. Von Kleist had a need for speed in more than one sense of the word!
We are not just talking a few junkie Panzer drivers here. We’re talking about millions of tablets being doled out to the German armed forces.
I warmly recommend this text. Ohler is not an intelligence specialist, so is unaware, e.g., that Admiral Canaris survived World War II. He does not make the link between German narcotics policy pre and post 1945. He also thinks that Hitler bore the major part of the blame for the Holocaust and committed suicide in the bunker in 1945. He’s also unaware that Dr Theodor Morell, Hitler’s quack, reported to Admiral Canaris. (The story of Morell’s attempts to poison Hitler without actually being seen to administer poison is quite funny. Amongst the ‘medicines’ Hitler was given was strychnine, which is normally given to rats (other rats?) and not to improve their health.)
These are forgivable errors by a non-intelligence specialist. Not many people know where our community partner the Führer ended up after he left Berlin, along with his doctor, in the F-W Condor, in April ’45 (Austria – he went home).
There are some fascinating titbits in the book – the Abwehr’s acquisition of a large quantity of cocaine in 1943, e.g. It’s a book which really does repay reading.
This week’s TV review: Dad’s Army, The Deadly Attachment
(airdate 31st October 1973)
It wouldn’t be Saturday night in Britain without a rerun of Dad’s Army. On Saturday evening BBC2 reran one of the funniest ever episodes of this wonderful and much-loved series, The Deadly Attachment.
The series really deserves more airtime on American TV. It tells you a lot about Britain and helps explain Brexit. For those who are unfamiliar with it, it tells the story of a bunch of mostly elderly misfits in a Home Guard platoon in Britain’s darkest days, in World War II.
Brilliantly cast and superbly acted, Dad’s Army is timeless. Our heroes are led by pompous bank manager Captain Mainwaring, played to a tee by the late Arthur Lowe. His sergeant is played by that great British comic actor, John Le Mesurier. The funniest of them all is Corporal Jones, played by Clive Dunn, who was actually many years younger than the man he played. Clive was the only member of the cast I met, BTW, in Putney, where he lived, in 1983.
Corporal Jones is full of sound advice, about the importance of not panicking and the fact that Jerry does not like it up him. In this episode the Walmington-on-Sea platoon are asked to guard a captured party of U-Boat crew, led by Philip Madoc. The U-Boat skipper is very German and starts making a list of names.
Private Pike, the mummy’s boy who’s too young to be conscripted, sings a memorable little ditty about Hitler being a twerp and half-barmy, along with his army. The U-Boat captain asks “Vot is your name” and Captain Mainwaring shouts “Don’t tell him, Pike”. It’s one of the great moments in British sit-com history, but you need to watch it. It loses something in the telling! This is one of those shows you don’t mind being repeated again and again.
Michael Shrimpton was a barrister from his call to the Bar in London in 1983 until being disbarred in 2019 over a fraudulently obtained conviction. He is a specialist in National Security and Constitutional Law, Strategic Intelligence and Counter-terrorism. He is a former Adjunct Professor of Intelligence Studies at the American Military University.