Aleppo Hanging

November 7, 2007 at 4:05 pm 2 comments

Five men were hung from the clock tower in downtown Aleppo last week. Some of Ahmad’s French friends came to visit, and expressed horror at the punishment. I pointed out that, in their country where capital punishment is unacceptable, the state didn’t kill people for their crimes. They pointed out though that it was common in the US. I found myself musing about the differences. They actually hanged men–men who had killed strangers after robbing them–in the middle of the day in a visible (very visible) place. We kill people in the middle of the night when no one is watching. Is that to spare the dead future embarrassment? Or to spare the population the knowledge of what is done in our name?

Ahmad was horrified that men killed people, without remorse, just shot them after taking their money. His shock startled me. It is such a common occurrence in the US. It made me wonder about the difference between the two societies. What makes random violence, drive-by shootings, murder so common in the US and so uncommon here (the country my friends and family see as so violent)?

Then our new French friend pointed out that when men kill their wives or sisters on suspicion they have had sex with men to whom they are not married, the murderers were not hung from the clock tower. They seldom suffered serious legal consequences. Why was it different–acceptable to kill women relatives but not strangers?

The question remained unanswered. I did wonder, though, whether “honor killings” (which in no way correspond to Islamic law) would end if men engaging in extramarital sex were considered fair targets by “dishonored” relatives.

Syria hangs five youths in public square (Deutsche Presse-Agentur)

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Entry filed under: Syria, Women.

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Idetrorce  |  December 15, 2007 at 4:11 pm

    very interesting, but I don’t agree with you
    Idetrorce

    Reply
  • 2. Hannah  |  January 10, 2008 at 10:01 pm

    Sir, I was googlen the Hanging in Syria because I was there when it happend. We stayed in Busra hotel, 30 sec. walking from the clock tower. I must say it happend at 5 o’clock in the morning and they let them haning for a couple of hours, so it didn’t happen in the middle of the day, they were long gone by then. The persons whom where hanged were naked and were wrapped in white blankets with very angry messages on them. The real question should be though if they were hanged rightfully. I know the story goes that they robbed and than killed each 20 men. I (and more people with me) found that hard to believe. After some research and talking to the locals we found out that the last public hanging was in 1993 so over 15 years ago and that happend to a Isrealic Spy. So why hang these five ‘simple’ robbers? The fact is, the people of Syria are getting suspecious about there goverment. The goverment needed to warn his people; ‘ If you disagree with us, this will happen’. I think this should change youre perspective about the whole situation a little bit don’t you think? Now, I’m the last person who will say that Syria is a violent country, because it’s a wonderfull place to be, the people are great ánd there in many social ways a good excample for western society. Hówever, I don’t realy think you can compare what happend in Syria (which was pure a political happening) to the death penalty in the USA. There they get at least a trial, weither it happens fair or not, in Syria that is out of the question.

    I would like a response from who ever wrote this, could be very interesting. Thank you anyway for telling your site of the story, I hope you see things in a different light now.

    Greetings,

    Hannah

    Reply

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