Saddam won the PR war in the end
If you haven’t done so already, check out the video of Saddam Hussein’s hanging at the New York Times homepage (you see the preparation, not the actual hanging).
Two things may strike you: First, the quiet dignity and courage of the condemned man (Saddam was a vicious sadist and a war criminal, but he pulled things off well at the end); and, second, how much the executioners look more like a collection of thugs than the lawful representatives of an independent nation.
David Kurtz over at Talking Points Memo got it about right:
Looking at the photo the NYT is leading with on its homepage, I am struck by the motley bunch of executioners. Hooded to protect their identities, they look like a gang of toughs from a B movie–or, on further reflection, like the hooded terrorists who in the earlier days of our occupation were murdering hostages like Nick Berg, on camera, for maximum shock value.
My prediction is that at least among Sunni Arabs, the ultimate impact of this video will be to cast Saddam in a heroic light — the brave leader facing death with courage and dignity, while his executioners hide their faces in fear.
The martyrdom of the Butcher of Baghdad has begun, with a little help from our “friends.”
December 31st, 2006 at 8:10 pm
Riverbend’s 12/31 entry puts the qotation marks around Steve’s observation.
January 1st, 2007 at 12:09 am
It’s 12:05Am CST….that means it’s time to say Happy New Year to Steve and all the regulars at the cafe…..you’re all doing impoortant work here folks keep up the great work….
I’m happy to know you all….in the blog sense of course….
back on topic….
The NYT echoes Steve’s comments….and strangely enough, makes the case that it was America who tried become Saddam’s “benefactor” in the end…..
gimmeabreak! that doesn’t pass the giggle test….
The question remains: Was the role of America in Saddam’s trial and subsequent( and pre-ordained) execution, ham-fisted, botched or just plain stupid?
From Steve: Thanks hizzhoner. And a Happy New Year to you and all the rest of the regular gang. You guys (and gals) are at least as important to the place as I am.
January 1st, 2007 at 6:44 am
happy New Year!
the Bull in the China Shop
yes, the feeling i had, forced to stumble across the hanging everywhere in the news - was disgust. (Public) executions are nothing what civilized nations do - they happen under Stalin and Hitler, in the Middle Age and under the Law of the Sharia
but they don’t happen in civilized nations - and that’s the lesson to learn here, because Bush had made it clear, that his America loves executions, the more the better
i guess, that’s what David Kurtz wanted to say - it’s hard to say, what this Pyrrhus Victory will cost in the end
it is as if Bush wants to do everything to make America look like a “motley bunch of executioners”