Splendid Brit Justice

The judge who just sentenced 3 Islamic* terrorists is the one wrongly derided for demanding an explanation of the workings of the Internet. This episode confirms the sheer quality of the Brit legal system.

The story:

Three Islamist extremists were jailed yesterday for engaging in “cyber-jihad” by inciting terrorism on the internet.

They promoted martyrdom and holy war through online forums and websites, including discussions about a plot by 45 doctors to explode a car bomb at an American naval base. It was the first prosecution based entirely on the distribution of jihadi material via the internet…

At the end of the trial yesterday, Mr Justice Openshaw was handed a note from the jury indicating that it was their request that had prompted his question. It read: “We, the jury, would like you to know that we are sorry for any embarrassment.”

The judge was reported to have said: “The trouble is, I don’t understand the language. I don’t really understand what a website is.”

I opined on July 4 that the US Constitution was much more robust than that of the UK.

So it’s only fair to add that in my experience the Brit legal system is fair, rational, and intelligent, whereas the US legal system is not.

* See subsequent post.


2 Responses to Splendid Brit Justice

  1. dearieme says:

    If the US Constitution is so wonderful, why does SCOTUS so often ignore it, and replace it by judicial whim? Or, put more generally, how can any constitution be protected from the judiciary?

  2. gandalf says:


    I think the US Constitution works because it distributes power across a wide range of institutions – States, Feds, Judiciary, Legislature, Executive,

    So although each of these naturally tend to corruption, cronyism, and despotism, they’re more likely to cancel out than in the top-down UK.

    Having said that, the US judicial system is quite dreadful and by far the weakest of its institutions.

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