PUBLISHED: 14:17 GMT, 26
March 2012 | UPDATED: 17:29 GMT, 26 March 2012
Something like you love life, we love death, but only for other people.
Abu Qatada, you will recollect, is the man once described by a judge as Osama Bin Laden’s right-hand man in Europe. He is living in Britain courtesy of the European Court of Human Rights, which has ruled he could not get a fair trial if he were deported to his native Jordan. The Strasbourg judges fear evidence gained through torture could be used against him.
We know that Qatada is enjoying life because we have it from his brother in Jordan, who has said that ‘right now he is the happiest man in England’.
Rehoused: Qatada has been handed a more expensive taxpayer-funded home
This is a major endorsement for the Court of Human Rights, the European human rights convention which it enforces, and of course the Human Rights Act, which gives these rules precedence in our own law. In America, the Declaration of Independence offers the right only to the pursuit of life, liberty and happiness.
Here the European court will give you happiness on a plate, although there has to be some doubt about the life bit if Abu Qatada is allowed to hang around for long.
According to his brother Ibrahim Othman, Qatada spends his days with his wife and five children living the simple life, watching Islamic TV channels and reading Islamic texts.
I’m surprised he’s not a Rolling Stones fan. You may remember Keith Richards saying happiness is not a Lear Jet to fly home on.
But if we are to believe Mr Othman, the main source of Qatada’s happiness is not his piety but his house. Let him tell it: ‘They have now given him a very nice new place, bigger than the first house he went to.