Well, boo hoo, eh? - Public Domain

That at least is the complaint being made, that the remaining pair of the “Beatles” who fought for Islamic State think it is unfair that they lost their UK citizenship as a result.

The men were allegedly among four British jihadis who made up the ISIS cell nicknamed “The Beatles” by surviving captives because of their English accents. The cell became known for its brutality, holding in captivity more than 20 Western hostages, and torturing and killing several, including American, British and Japanese journalists and aid workers, in 2014 and 2015.

Just losing citizenship strikes me as a rather mild punishment for that. Although of course that’s not what they did lose it for. Rather, taking up arms with enemies of the Queen, that’s the reason for the no passport rule.

In an interview with Associated Press from northern Syria, Elsheikh said the “illegal” withdrawal of their UK citizenship put them at risk of “rendition and torture”.

“Being taken to any foreign land and treated in any way and having nobody to vouch for you,” he said.

“When you have these two guys who don’t even have any citizenship… if we just disappear one day, where is my mum going to go and say where is my son?”

It’s at about this point that I’ll say that those who live by the sword will and should die by it.

There’s an entirely reasonable argument that they shouldn’t be taken out around the back and chainsawed to death just yet. We are better than that, we do indeed think they should have a fair and full trial. No, not just first, but to see whether they were or are guilty of those murders. However, they’re not doubting that they were part of Isis at all and the revocation of citizenship is dependent upon that and that alone. So, that part of the punishment is fair enough.

But enough of being serious about this, the torturers are claiming their human rights have been violated. The correct response is a hearty guffaw.

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paulscottrobsonjghmoqifenPatTim Newman Recent comment authors

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moqifen
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moqifen

“There’s an entirely reasonable argument that they shouldn’t be taken out around the back and chainsawed to death just yet”
Can’t say i’d be crying in my cornflakes if this was to happen.

Spike
Member

Surely the Rule of Law means that you enforce the law even if the lawbreaker complains that it will be unpleasant! Something that the US should learn as we strain to see everything through the eyes of “LGBT people” and “Dreamers” and “The Homeless” and promiscuous teens needing strangers to pay for their abortions.

Pat
Member
Pat

But they are not in a foreign land. They are In their (adopted) homeland. One they adopted in full knowledge of how it respected the human rights of those who disagreed with it.
That things didn’t turn out too well for that adopted home, in part because of its decision to fight everyone in sight including Britain, is their problem.

Tim Newman
Member

They should be returned to Syria and tried according to the laws of the Syrian government. If a Syrian turned up in the UK and started beheading people, I’d expect British law to apply, so what’s the difference? Pack them off to Damascus, let Assad know who they are and what they’ve done, and scratch them from the record. If Ma doesn’t like it, she’s free to leave.

Pat
Member
Pat

As I understand it they are in Kurdish held Syria, and I’m sure Assad has someone reading the news.
I wonder why they surrendered to the Kurds rather than any of the other peoples fighting the Islamic state. Couldn’t be from an expectation of mercy? Like the Kurds are the only ones wouldn’t kill them out of hand?

moqifen
Member
moqifen

a relevant quote would be from the great HL Mencken “Injustice is relatively easy to bear; what stings is justice”.

jgh
Member
jgh

There’s the established principle with Laurie Lee and George Orwell losing their British citizenship after fighting on the losing side of the Spanish Civil War…. oh.

paulscottrobson
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paulscottrobson

Tim Newman is right. These are crimes committed in Iraq/Syria ; those countries are perfectly entitled to apply their legal justice system to them, irrespective of whether they are British citizens or not.

There are, I believe, UK citizens on death row in the USA (and executed in the past), and in places like Singapore where drug dealing leads to a death sentence ; can’t see how this is any different.