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Thursday, 26 May 2011

Mladic and bin Laden. Spot the difference

They had both been on the run for ten years. They had both gone into hiding with a network of supporters to sustain them - they had both been responsible for the deaths of thousands of people. They both had a loyal group of followers, mostly trained in combat. They were both two of the most hunted men in the world.

But it is in the capture that any similarities end. One will go to the European War Crimes Tribunals and be held account for what he has done. He will face a trial, and the victims of his crimes will be able to put their case, and he will be judged on his actions, probably facing a jail sentence til the end of his days.

The other was executed by a kill squad, getting out of his bed, in front of his wife and one of his young daughters. Unarmed, he had a high calibre weapon placed near to his head, and half his head blown away.

Yes, bin Ladens execution was efficient, his body swiftly sunk beneath the waves - but I believe that Mladic's arrest and trial witnesses to a deeper justice than the barrel of the gun. Bin Laden will always be a martyr to his followers, killed by the evil empire, but the trial of Mladic will weaken his following as his crimes are exposed and he is finally made responsible for his barbarism.

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