Imam Samudra and brothers Amrozi and Mukhlas were shot to death by separate firing squads in the early hours of the Indonesian morning, six years after the Kuta nightclub explosions that killed 202 people.
Australia’s official policy on such matters is to oppose the use of the death penalty but only to intervene if Australian citizens are involved. Amnesty says this is hypocritical and endangers the lives of Australians on death row.
Many people that i have spoken to are confused about the executions. Has it merely elevated the trio to martyrdom status or has it finally enabled the grieving families to accept closure? Are those in favour of capital punishment uncivilised folk or is life without parole a more inhumane punishment than a painless instant death?
Personally, i have no emotional hang-ups about killing murderous psycopaths who indiscriminately kill (many Muslims also died in the bombing, which was carried out in the name of Allah). I don’t view this as an uncivilised or barbaric standpoint – but pragmatic. However i do accept the martydom argument.
The reactions of the parents of those killed in the bombings are as diverse as the rest of the population.
David Stewart, whose son Anthony died in the nightclub attacks, has said he would be happy to pull the trigger on the firing squad rifle, adding that “I’d check the rifle to make sure I wasn’t given the blank.”
However, former Adelaide magistrate Brian Deegan, who lost his son Josh in the Bali bombings, says he’s full of trepidation about future reprisals after the executions of three bombers.
Though i can’t even begin to imagine what losing a child must be like, i can sympathise with Mr. Stewart. I just cannot understand the latter viewpoint. Fear mustn’t prevent us from removing this cancer from our societies. We have to stand up to bullies, even though there will be consequences.
They killed 202 people. They weren’t sorry. Now they too are dead. Good.