Executions of Drug Traffickers

I regularly check in on capitalpunishmentuk.org, including checking his monthly listing of verifiable executions.  It was doing this, not watching the news, that I discovered that, last July (2014), Singapore resumed executions with a pair of drug traffickers, and that last month (January 2015) Indonesia executed seven drug traffickers.

Back in March of 2013, I wrote about my feelings about the death penalty for drug trafficking:

I’m of two minds on drug trafficking.  I am no supporter of the so called War on Drugs, and would rather see recreational narcotics kept available with the existing, and possibly more dangerous, recreational drugs: alcohol and tobacco.

On the other hand, if society has deemed that drugs are as dangerous as they seem to have, then drug trafficking should be treated in a maner similar to other crimes against society and national security.

Back on the gripping hand, if the United States passed drug trafficking laws similar to what Singapore and Malaysia have, I am convinced that we’d see more police officers killed.  If you are going to be executed for having the drugs, you might as well kill the cop since that increases the chance that you’ll not get caught – at least marginally, and criminals are known for their marginal thinking.

{The full article is here}

So, I decided to do a quick count.  Based on the information I could glean from Capital Punishment UK, I counted a total of 199 people who have been executed for drug trafficking between July 2014 and January 2015, inclusive.  Most of these have been in Iran or Saudi Arabia.  But at least China also executed drug traffickers in that period.

It is clear that from the Persian Gulf to Southeast Asia governments and people believe that drug trafficking is worthy as a capital crime.

This doesn’t really change my thoughts expressed above.  But it does make me think.

If it weren’t for the dislike of the death penalty in the West (i.e. Western Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand, and other areas that share a broad culture and set of values with these), I wonder if there would have been more executions for drug trafficking worldwide.

For quite a while, I’ve used drug trafficking in my fantasies (see Execution Fantasies).  Much of this is because it gives me a crime that I could, almost, believe I’d be guilty of.  I have a much harder time imaging myself committing murder, rape, or many of the other crimes that carry the death penalty.

Seeing that there is again an uptick in the number of people executed for drug trafficking, especially in places like Singapore and Indonesia, helps make it a valid fantasy.