In the Bible Belt, Christmas Isn’t Coming to Death Row

When it comes to the death penalty, guilt or innocence shouldn’t really matter to Christians.  

NASHVILLE — Until August, Tennessee had not put a prisoner to death in nearly a decade. Last Thursday, it performed its third execution in four months.
This was not a surprising turn of events. In each case, recourse to the courts had been exhausted. In each case Gov. Bill Haslam, a Republican, declined to intervene, though there were many reasons to justify intervening. Billy Ray Irick suffered from psychotic breaks that raised profound doubts about his ability to distinguish right from wrong. Edmund Zagorksi’s behavior in prison was so exemplary that even the warden pleaded for his life. David Earl Miller also suffered from mental illness and was a survivor of child abuse so horrific that he tried to kill himself when he was 6 years old.
Questions about the humanity of Tennessee’s lethal-injection protocol were so pervasive following the execution of Mr. Irick that both Mr. Zagorski and M…

Iraq hands death penalty to al-Qaeda member responsible for massacre 11 years ago

An Iraqi court in the province of Diyala on Sunday sentenced an al-Qaeda member to death, convicted of killing 19 people in an attack on a village 11 years ago, the court announced.

Last week, the same court sentenced 4 more al-Qaeda members to death who were convicted of carrying out attacks in the country in 2007.

"The Diyala Criminal Court has sentenced to death by hanging one of those convicted of terrorism after committing criminal acts and belonging to al-Qaeda," Judge Abdul-Sattar al-Birqdar, the spokesperson for the Supreme Judicial Council, said in a statement.

He added that "among the terrorist operations carried out by the convict, the man killed 19 people, kidnapped 2 others, and wounded 1 person after an attack with the armed group [al-Qaeda] on the village of Amiriyah - al-Rawashd in Diyala Province."

Last year, a court in Basra sentenced 3 people to death for the same attack carried out by several al-Qaeda militants in late July 2007 in the village of al-Rawashd.

The exact number of those accused of the incident remains unknown. It is also unclear how many other convicted members of the extremist group are in Iraqi prisons awaiting the same fate.

Different human rights organizations, including the United Nations, have repeatedly expressed their concerns about the rising number of death sentences in Iraq.

Aside from their condemnation, the organizations warn that efforts by Iraqi authorities to escalate the implementation of death sentences could lead to the execution of innocent people.

Source: kurdistan24.net, August 6, 2018

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"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

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