June 28, 2014 – Last Thursday, Uruguayan footballer Luis Suárez was banned by FIFA from all “football related activities” for four months for biting Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini during last Tuesday’s World Cup match. Since then, many have called Suárez’s ban excessive. Retired Argentine football player Diego Maradona even likened the ban to being “handcuffed” and “thrown in the Guantánamo Bay detention camp”.
Whether or not the ban is excessive or unjust we happily leave to everybody’s best judgment, as it is a matter of utter irrelevance. What truly matters from a wider perspective are the criminal acts of those who remain unpunished up till today. And their actions involve much more than biting someone’s shoulder. The most notorious example is 2009’s Nobel Peace Prize winner, U.S. president Barack Obama. In Libya alone a few hundred thousand people have been killed since 2011 as a result of the US/NATO-led war against the country, and a staggering number of at least two million (meaning one third of the population) has been displaced.
On Saturday, FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke defended the punishment that was handed down to Suárez by explaining: “[the biting incident] was seen by hundreds of millions of people. It is not what you want your kids, what you want the little ones who are playing football around the world, to see at a World Cup.” In other words, Suárez was mainly punished for giving football a bad name.
Now let’s return to Obama. Not a footballer but a politician, but the requirements and expectations remain the same: one should not behave in a violent manner or in any manner that causes distress. Not at all, but most certainly not when the whole world is watching. And the whole world, including young children, was watching when the US and NATO forces were bombing sovereign and prosperous Libya back into stone age. Which punishment did Obama and the like receive for giving politics the worst name ever?
Imagine Obama being punished like Luis Suárez and thus being banned from “all politics related activities for four months” for each person wounded or killed by his regime. Without any doubt it would be impossible for him to ever return to politics. The day this kind of justice will arrive might be the day on which the world is ready for a People’s Government as Libya had since 1977, till Obama c.s. decided to replace it with “western style democracy”. And the results of that turned out to be far more devastating than the teeth marks in Giorgio Chiellini’s shoulder.