One more slips away!


When it comes to the real evildoers of the world, justice has butter fingers. Over the weekend, one more slipped through the cracks on the floor of the international tribunal at The Hague. Just fifty hours of testimony separated Slobodan Milosevic from certain conviction when he decided to find his own way to eternal hell and damnation, leaving perplexed officials, supporters and critics to expound on mysterious theories of suicide, murder and natural causes.


Milosevic was the first national leader arrested and tried and for once, as his trial spluttered and wound its way through the myriad twists and turns of international law, it seemed as if the world had changed its ways with the perpetrators of genocide. Alas, in the ostensible need to uphold international law and fair play, the wheels of justice may have ground fine but they ground too slowly, allowing the villain to escape before his dues were paid.


You can blindfold justice all you want but the color of the law is different, different for leaders, different for other criminals and different for you and me. Why doesn’t anybody put you and me in five star accommodations when we offend? Why are these leaders not deprived of sleep, or made to stand on one leg for hours, or dog leashes used to lead them to the courtroom?


Mussolini was summarily executed the day after he was captured, without fuss or delay. Perhaps, justice is better served like steak, fast and hot, even when rare.


In death as in life, he managed to hide his real motives inside the darkness of his soul, using his circumstances to his advantage, casting shadows of suspicion on friend and foe alike. His victims will wring their hands in despair and prepare to carry their unquenched anguish and pain in their hearts forever, while whispers of ethnic conspiracy and revenge threaten to inflame the passions of his people and bring back turmoil to a land that has never quite healed.


The Butcher of Belgrade may well burn in hell for eternity, but even there, in the company of his siblings in spirit, he will thumb his nose at the world and stick his tongue out at its velvet gloves.