In the crosshairs of conscience: John Kitzhaber's death penalty reckoning

To cope with his dread, John Kitzhaber opened his leather-bound journal and began to write.
It was a little past 9 on the morning of Nov. 22, 2011. Gary Haugen had dropped his appeals. A Marion County judge had signed the murderer's death warrant, leaving Kitzhaber, a former emergency room doctor, to decide Haugen's fate. The 49-year-old would soon die by lethal injection if the governor didn't intervene.
Kitzhaber was exhausted, having been unable to sleep the night before, but he needed to call the families of Haugen's victims.
"I know my decision will delay the closure they need and deserve," he wrote.
The son of University of Oregon English professors, Kitzhaber began writing each day in his journal in the early 1970s. The practice helped him organize his thoughts and, on that particular morning, gather his courage.
Kitzhaber first dialed the widow of David Polin, an inmate Haugen beat and stabbed to death in 2003 while already serving a life sentence fo…

Captured British ISIS Jihadists face execution in Iraq

Members of an Iraqi Special forces intelligence team talk to suspected Islamic State fighter in Mosul, Iraq
6,000 captured Jihadis got the death penalty in terror trials lasting under 20 minutes. Iraqi courts are sentencing Islamic State fighters - including Europeans - to execution by hanging.

BRIT Jihadists captured after the fall of ISIS in Iraq are facing the death penalty in terror trials lasting less than 20 minutes. 

Iraqi courts are sentencing Islamic State fighters - including Europeans - to execution by hanging. 

The war-torn country's Justice Ministry has disclosed 194 terrorism-related executions since 2016, including at least 27 foreigners from other Arab countries, according to a review of ministry news releases. 

Last month the ministry said it had executed an additional 38 prisoners on terrorism-related charges, but it did not specify their nationalities, prompting a rebuke by the United Nations human rights office. 

At least 1 of those executed was from Sweden, according to researchers on human rights and terrorism. 

Up to 6,000 more are on death row, and their nationalities have not been disclosed, according to the United Nations. 

Many more suspected militants are in custody, including at least 4 Europeans. 

More than 800 UK citizens are thought to have gone to fight for Isis in Iraq and Syria, including teenagers, women and young families. 

3 weeks ago, 2 Turkish men who claimed they had travelled to Iraq to work as plumbers were found guilty of being ISIS fighters and sent to the gallows after a hearing that lasted just 18 minutes, reported the Washington Post. 

In December 2016, judge Abu Iman, who rules at the Qayyarah terrorist investigations court, warned that at least 100 Brit Jihadists captured in the beseiged city of Mosul would face the death penalty. 

He said: "They have committed crimes against Iraqis so they should face local law." 

And last month UK defence secretary, Gavin Williamson, said Britons who have fought for Islamic State abroad should be "hunted down and killed". 

He suggested there was deliberate targeting of British Jihadists by the armed forces fighting ISIS as the group retreats in Syria and Iraq. 

He said: "A dead terrorist can't cause any harm to Britain." 

"I do not believe that any terrorist, whether they come from this country or any other, should ever be allowed back into this country. We should do everything we can do to destroy and eliminate that threat." 

Williamson said Jihadist groups in Libya, Iraq and Syria were breeding grounds for plotting attacks in the UK. 

He added: "Our job in terms of eliminating will not stop this year, will not stop next year - it is something we have got to continue to pursue." 

Source: thesun.co.uk, January 9, 2018

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