This New York Times headlines captures the new post-Saddam meme the press will take:
The lede reads:
Two suicide bombers exploded cars outside Iraqi police stations today, killing at least six people and themselves, and wounding 22, in an apparent sign that the insurgency aimed at American occupation forces and the Iraqis who work with them is continuing despite the capture of Saddam Hussein. [Emphasis added.]
The unspoken assumption is, “Now that Saddam is in our hands, you told us the fighting would end, but it hasn’t. Liar.” Except Bush said no such thing. From yesterday’s address:
I also have a message for all Americans: The capture of Saddam Hussein does not mean the end of violence in Iraq. We still face terrorists who would rather go on killing the innocent than accept the rise of liberty in the heart of the Middle East.
Nevertheless, the many in the press will try to make you think that Saddam’s capture is supposed to mean an end to the violence, and that Bush will have failed if it doesn’t happen.
From Strategy Page, vie Steven DallaVicenza:
One reason M-1 tanks are still frequently used for combat operations in Iraq is because they have a new shotgun type shell for use against hostile infantry. The XM1028 shell holds 1100 10mm tungsten balls that are propelled out of the gun barrel and begin to disperse. The tungsten projectiles are lethal at up to 700 meters. The official, “Comments Off
If you’re like me, and Whomever help you if you are, then you often find yourself wondering, “Say, I wonder to myself wonderingly, where can I find some really good stuff written by Rocky Mountain bloggers?”
Jim Geraghty “blew a gasket” at NRO today. His words, not mine.
It’s a good thing. Read it.
Bill Safire doesn’t think Saddam will cough up any useful intel:
I think Saddam is still SaddamComments Off
I didn’t expect this:
U.S. troops captured a haggard Saddam Hussein (news – web sites) in a cramped hole near one of his sumptuous palaces Sunday, a humiliating fate for one of history’s most brutal dictators. A U.S. official later said Saddam had been moved to another country, and the Dubai-based Arab TV station Al-Arabiya said he was taken to Qatar.
If the move to Qatar is simply for security’s sake, then I understand. But I hope he’s returned to Iraq to face the justice of his people.
Why turn him over to the UN (or any other body or country), and give a propaganda coup to the organization which did nothing to topple or capture him?
Zombyboy collected some choice comments from readers of the DeanForAmerica blog.
Jihan Ajlouni, a 24-year-old university student, said, “This is a big loss for the Arab nation. Saddam was one of the great Arab leaders who supported the Palestinian people and many Arabs. We feel very sad today, and we say to all the traitors and collaborators: Don’t rush to celebrate because there are millions of Saddams in the Arab world.”
Fathi Salman, 50, a taxi driver, described the arrest of Saddam as a “black day” for the Palestinians. “This is a black day for all the Palestinians and all the Arabs and Muslims,” he said. “I still can’t believe that President Saddam has been captured by the Americans. Saddam was the only Arab leader who cared about us. He supported the Palestinian cause from the beginning. His arrest is a major setback for the Palestinians. It’s a pity that he didn’t fight.”
Khairiyeh Said, 43, a high-school teacher, said she wept when she watched Saddam in captivity. “I was sitting with my friends when we heard the bad news,” she added. “We all started crying because we love Saddam and we hate [US President George W.] Bush and [Prime Minister Ariel] Sharon. This is a big victory for Bush and Sharon and all the enemies of the Palestinian people. We hope the Iraqi resistance will now teach the American dogs a good lesson.”
Michael Hanna a 28-year-old engineer was one of the few Palestinians who said they were happy that Saddam was captured by the Americans. “Saddam is responsible for the killing of thousands of his own people and he deserves to die,” he said. “I have no sympathy for him or other Arab dictators. I hope he will be put on trial and executed. This should be a lesson for other corrupt and tyrant Arab leaders. I hope the Iraqi people will now be able to live in peace because they have suffered for a long time under Saddam and his sons.”
There’s at least a little bit of hope most everywhere.
Check the furrows and wasted eyes in SaddamComments Off
Bill Whittle gives us some brutal, historical perspective.
Howard Dean comments:
“This is a great day for the Iraqi people, the US, and the international community.
“Our troops are to be congratulated on carrying out this mission with the skill and dedication we have come to know of them.
“This development provides an enormous opportunity to set a new course and take the American label off the war. We must do everything possible to bring the UN, NATO, and other members of the international community back into this effort.
“Now that the dictator is captured, we must also accelerate the transition from occupation to full Iraqi sovereignty.”
To sum up: “We’re doing so well, we should turn it over to people who won’t do so well.”
Remember when some Palestinians danced in the streets on 9/11? They ain’t dancing now:
Disbelief and gloom seized many Palestinians Sunday at news of Saddam Hussein’s capture as Israel fired off a telegram of congratulations to Washington.
The former Iraqi ruler was a hero to many Palestinians for his stand against Israel and its U.S. ally, as well as for helping families of Palestinians dead in an uprising.
For Israel, he was a menace over the horizon who long bankrolled the enemy.
“It’s a black day in history,” said Sadiq Husam, 33, a taxi driver in Ramallah, West Bank seat of the Palestinian Authority.
From an AP roundup:
“Praise the Lord. … This is a day of glory for the American military, American intelligence, and it’s a day of triumph and joy for anybody in the world who cares about freedom and human rights and peace.”Comments Off
I’m not normally one to encourage people to stuff the ballot box, but you might want to vote in this poll twice.
From the Democratic Underground:
With all due respect to the Iraqi people, for us in the USA — I’m not so sure this is a positive thing. The Chimperial administration is going to play it as a Glorious Victory Against Evil, and tell us to rejoice that We The People no longer have to fear the flying monkeys that Saddam was going to set upon us any minute! The dead of Sept 11 and their grieving families have been avenged! All Hail, Chimperial Highness! Our children will be safe in shopping malls!
Yeah, safe children is a bad thing.
No responses yet to the post, but I’ll keep an eye on it.
James Joyner has another excellent roundup of blogoshere reaction to today’s big news.
I can’t improve on that.
TLB would like to ask a question to some on the left. . .
Here’s how David’s Medienkritik expects the German media to respond to Saddam’s capture.
Most amusing prediction: German commentators will ask, “Did Saddam see his lawyer already?”
As the entire world now knows, Saddam Hussein, armed with a pistol, was captured alive and unharmed by American troops on Saturday.
Domestically, President Bush has one hell of a reelection campaign commercial. Imagine the video of that Army doctor checking Saddam’s fillings, with the sonorous voiceover: “Once a tyrant, now a prisoner. He will never threaten America again.” Or words to that effect. Every time a Democrat complains of quagmire, the White House will be able to roll that videotape and say
OK — how long before someone claims we’ve had Saddam for weeks (or months, or whatever), and only announced it today to distract attention away from the Halliburton overcharge scandal?
UPDATE: Want more wild conspiracy theories? Wizbang’s got’em.
As I’m watching the news, following links on weblogs, and trying to write a “What’s it all mean?” essay, my bride tells me “it means — neener neener neener.”
I don’t think I can top her commentary, but I am trying to flesh it out a bit.
I’ll have something on Saddam in just a bit. Right now I need to main line some coffee and Gatorade.
Glenn has links to everything in this extended post.
Iraqi journalist Fatah al-Sheikh wept when he saw U.S. video of Saddam Hussein at a news conference Sunday.
“When I saw Saddam’s long beard, how he looked like a defeated man, it reminded me of the two years I spent in jail, how his agents tortured me in every way you could imagine,” he said.
Iraqi reporters at press conference with Paul Bremer mirrored the jubilation in the streets by jumping for joy when the U.S. administrator showed pictures of the man who had terrified Iraqis and ruthlessly crushed dissent for decades.
They punched the air and shouted but Sheikh just sobbed loudly.
Like millions of Iraqis Sheikh was relieved when U.S. forces toppled Saddam in April.
But he could not feel safe without clear proof of Saddam’s death or capture.
“Saddam put me in prison just because I was publishing an Islamic newspaper without official permission. I was in jail in 1989 and again in 1999. In the end I had to pay them off to get released,” said Sheikh.
Employees of the U.S. administration, who in an unusual move were allowed into the televised press conference, clapped and cheered Bremer.
Some reporters screamed “death to Saddam.” Others thanked the 600 U.S. soldiers who tracked down the once-feared leader who was hiding in a hole near his home town of Tikrit.
Tonight we celebrate the cholidays. And that’s no typo.
A few years back, I was off to St. Louis for one of several trips to see my grandmother one more time before she didn’t die. Right before I left, my friends told me I’d be throwing a Christmas/Chanukah party so we could all exchange gifts.
On the one hand, it was a great idea. It certainly beat the old system, where we’d all sneak off to someone’s bedroom at a big party, to surreptitiously give each other our gifts. On the other hand, it kinda sucked. A party means dinner, and dinner means elbows, and I was living in a not-very-big townhouse. Our party space was maybe 550 square feet
All you have to do is read the comments in the Drinks below each post to discover many the readers here are way smarter than I am.
So how about helping out with some practical advice to a Navy reservist on his way to Iraq?
Hot off Drudge:
A German cannibal is holding talks with several film companies on a movie deal about his grisly story, his lawyer said on Friday at his murder trial.
Armin Meiwes, 42, has already begun writing his memoirs while in jail. They will detail how he killed, carved up and ate a victim he says wanted to die, lawyer Harald Ermel said during a break in the trial.
Anthony Hopkins’s agent could not be reached for comment.