When the British police held a suspected terrorist to the floor and shot him dead, I speculated that perhaps this Middle-Eastern-looking suspected terrrorist who had in effect been summarily executed might not in fact have been an actual terrorist.
By now we all know that in fact he was not a terrorist, the “wires trailing from his jacket” were probably related to his job as an electrician, and that he was not an Arab or a Pakistani Muslim but in fact a Brazilian (presumably Christian).
Which is precisely why there are supposed to be investigations and trials before criminals are executed — you are supposed to make sure, at a minimum, that the person you are executing is actually a criminal!
I am utterly horrified by this. And, one of the things that makes me proud to be an American is that American police did not react this way after 9/11/01. A lot of “suspected terrorists” were arrested, some were tried and convicted, most were released, and none were summarily executed. (In fact, none were executed at all.) Even many of those captured on the battlefields of Afghanistan and Iraq — captured in the act of armed attacks in defense of terrorist camps — were sent to GuantÃ¡namo rather than killed on sight — or beheaded on videotape like they would have done to our people.
I’m sure the terrorists view the fact that we imprison and feed them rather than behead them as a sign of our weakness, but it is really a sign of our (moral) strength.