The Death Penalty in Modern Times in Countries Overseas
There is a real interlocking of tectonic plates going on beneath the crust of international politics and her criminal justice. Invisibly, yet very strongly, the countries of South Asia are the outset of this process by not pulling apart, but engendering a fusion based on the English Rule of Law and the Death Sentence for terrorists and others. This fusion will not create political union but it will show the brothers at law spirit so memorable of Henry Cecil in his stories. Judges the world over will be united.
These countries stretching across the globe have, to a large extent, followed our lead in repealing the Death Sentence and obliterating its vestiges in their legal systems. I speak of Australasia, Ireland, Canada and the Republic of South Africa. Where in the West, outside the USA, does the Death Sentence for murder regime prevail? The reply is nowhere. Even in Europe the last judicial execution was the hated Dictator: Ceausescu in Bucharest, Romania following a Court Martial by firing squad on Christmas Day 1989. There have been no judicial executions since on the Continent. Indeed you have to go back to the Nuremberg trials and French tried collaborators with the Nazis, both such trials in 1945-46, to find the Death Sentence in use in Europe.
The European Union has put paid to Capital Punishment. You cannot be a member of the EU without signing up to the Human Rights regime which outlaws all forms of judicial execution. The vast power of the EU worldwide has brought the Death Penalty close to extinction throughout the Countries of our World save the USA – or has it?
2. Where May We Find the Death Sentence in Use Under the Rule of Law?
India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia, and there are not many more. Of these five, four have legal systems derived from our own and were within our Empire. Hong Kong our former colony is Chinese, we hear of no Capital trials there. Indonesia has recently executed some convicted serious drug dealers of Australasia extraction. What is the message? Don’t mess with another Country’s laws and expect mercy. Yes that anti-drugs law was tough but everyone knew about it. It is no good complaining if you offend in that manner – Jakarta will stick to its guns and properly so.
You will not win friends that way for sure. Singapore is similarly punitive, but respects English Senior Counsel traditionally as does Kuala Lumpur. Both those countries have Capital trials fortified by our Common Law. How often do such trials take place? Relatively rarely I would say, but the power remains if required. Singapore is known for its judicial tenacity and independence as a regime politically.
3. South Asia: India and Pakistan
This is the heart of the matter: India is a democracy of one billion people, no other country can compare. Pakistan counts more than 250 million and a lesser land area. Both countries have a strong religious element, Islamic in Pakistan and Hindus with Muslims and Sikhs in India. What unifies the two countries? Not the British flag anymore, but the strength of the Pakistan Supreme Court in Islamabad and the Indian High Court in Delhi and Mumbai. These central courts reign supreme in both these countries and the source of their justice is English Common Law going back to pre-1948 and the “Jewel in the Crown” of the Empress of India – Queen Victoria herself.
Do they apply the Death Sentence for murder most calculated? Yes, there was a judicial execution of an Islamic terrorist in Nagpur prison on 30 July 2015 in India. That has been confirmed. He had been condemned for terrorist atrocities in Mumbai: committed in 1993 but had fled justice. The Indian judges who refused his last Appeal for a stay of execution will require armed guards and those judges will not lack resolve when the next case comes along thank God. Executions for convicted terrorists in the Indian jurisdiction will continue you may be certain. This was not a one off hanging in Nagpur on 30 July 2015.
India is democratic and abides by Natural Justice and the Indian Rule of Law as we do in England & Wales. They have the courage to sentence murderers to death and order those executions to be carried out. We plainly do not have the resolve – may we learn the errors of our ways from our former subjects and soon.
She has thousands on Death Row convicted of terrorist murders and very serious such crimes. A small number were executed recently, but the process has been halted by the Pakistan Supreme Court. Why I ask? Pakistan is a troubled Country with less economic clout than India, which has had massive economic growth over the past ten years. India has the might that Pakistan lacks. Yes you have guessed – Pakistan is Islamic and the terrorism of Islam afflicts Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and Libya. Pakistan does not wish to have the pariah state status which Iran is shaking off. The Pakistani Supreme Court Judges are not political, but the Human Rights case has weakened their determination. It is a shocking and awesome task to execute 8,000 tried and convicted terrorists in Pakistan by hanging with so much lawlessness in that country. It is within the discretion lawful of the Pakistan Supreme Court to stay these executions. These judges have been pressurised by all these factors, as may happen to judges anywhere to delay these hangings.
Clearly the EU and the US President (also against the Death Sentence) support a stay. Deportation of these terrorist convicts is out of the question. Eventually they will be executed judicially, like it or not, in large numbers if some are spared. It took 22 years to execute the Nagpur terrorist. It will be done in Pakistan and every law abiding Pakistani agrees with my case and supports their Supreme Court in its judgements.
There is nothing to beat the Raj – divided though it may be. Pakistan’s terrorist problem was contracting when the executions had begun recently after a previous halt. That process has now been stopped once more. Pakistan is the key to Central Asian politics as I have argued. India’s executions give morale support to those ordered by the Pakistan Supreme Court. That morale enhancing fervour is needed throughout the bloodshed torn Pakistan in its cities and on the North West Frontier.
The English Rule of Law prevails as it used to in Calcutta then Delhi, under our Viceroy as it did pre-independence in 1948. The Death Sentence really matters to both these countries. They know what is best for themselves as nation states. I say stop the philandering in the West and follow the lead of Delhi and Islamabad by endorsing these judicial executions emanating from the Indian High Court and the Pakistan Supreme Court. Their pedigree is not flawed in any degree: They were part of our Empire in India so noble. I say let the lead diplomatic nations: the USA and England & Wales in this region speak straight and pronounce the words of help openly: we back your Rule of Law and its executions. Do not leave the peoples of these two countries in any doubt as to our position on this pivotal debate, with terrorist violence raging in Africa, Central Asia and the Near East and even Europe and Ukraine.
We must in honour support morality in these English speaking countries of Asia as the Anglo-American alliance also speaks that language and shares that morality in truth. If the Punjab, Delhi, Mumbai, Peshawar, Quetta, Lahore, West Bengal, Madras, Gujarat and Simla matter still to us today as they did in the days of the Indian Empire, then let us prove our love by not deserting them in their need. Justice counts above all other virtues throughout our World.