Bring on the tribunals

I once asked a gal pal of mine which team she might be rooting for in a recent Super Bowl. It was completely presumptuous of me to do so, and I realized it as soon as I uttered the question. I knew with that remarkable speed of intuition that I had just left myself open to some kind of sarcastic retort from a human being who was probably not into football one iota and would relish the opportunity to make that fact clear in a mildly nasty, down-putting sort of way. And sure enough, she jumped on it, responding with a semi-haughty but still elegant quote that I remember to this day: “I care less about very little.”

Which pretty much sums up how I’ve been reacting to the whole quasi-flap that’s been brewing about the probability that military tribunals will be used to dispense a hard-barked justice to any villainous Al Qaida fighters we capture in southwest Asia. I mean, I’ve huffed and puffed and tried real hard to get worked up about the looming specter of faceless courts of doom presided over by evil generals and sadistic captains who won’t be able to contain themselves after opening frightening boxes of Pandora’s Military Whoop Ass, and it’s just not workin’ out for me. I can’t muster up much outrage. Hell, forget outrage. I can’t even dredge up an eentsy teentsy gnat nut of concern.

If I’m gonna get worked up about something right now, I’d much rather get worked up about a sewer project getting forced down my throat that will cost me 20 large (to use trendy Soprano-speak), or the economic ramifications of the Train Trench, or what the hell is ever gonna be built at the corner of First and Virginia streets, or the terrifying sociopathic tendencies shown by all the gastro-terrorists waiting in line 45 minutes to get six-packs of hot doughnuts.

But the tribunals? Snore.

Remember, all this preliminary hand-wringing over tribunals is happening, and we’ve not come close to seeing one in action. Before such panels are declared monstrous, they should at least be given the chance to act monstrously. Here’s my guess as to how the tribunals will shake and bake. The lackey Qaidans, the Sgt. Achmed Schultzes who see nothing but are just following orders, will get to pound away on Afghani rock piles for about 40 years. Not sexy. The top-ranking Qaidans will be luckier, dispatched via specially blended Jonestown Juleps to that great Virgin Superstore in the Sky, where there will be a blue light special on Martyrs for a few weeks.

Of course, you need to remember that, when it comes to predictions about what’s going to happen in the W.O.T., we’re all pointing into a sky filled with uncertainties with fingers full of maybes.

As for Mr. John Walker (Has he washed his sooty face YET? John, think of your poor mother!), ole Johnboy won’t come close to anything that even remotely resembles a tribunal. Court TV will never let that happen—he’s the O.J. of 2002!