Saturday, April 5

Plain Silly: Not to mention helping to further stereotypes of the south: Lincoln Statue Heightens Old Pains
"Hitler/Paris 1940. Lincoln/Richmond 1865. Any questions?" one sign read. Another, held by a young boy, read: "Lincoln wasn't worth a cent -- then or now." And a wanted poster with Lincoln's face read: "WANTED: For War Crimes."

Several hours before the afternoon dedication, about 100 members of the Sons of Confederate Veterans and their families gathered at the nearby grave of Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederacy, to protest the Lincoln statue.

"As long as I'm commander in chief, we will never accept it," vowed Ron Wilson, national commander of the group. "We are going to fight these people everywhere they raise their head."

Truer than he knows: Iraqi Information Minister Sahaf reads Saddam message: "The criminals will be humiliated ... "

Source: Reuters

All the News that's Fit to Correct: From the "Correction" Section of the NYT's
Corrections: A front-page news analysis article on Sunday about the political perils faced by President Bush over the war with Iraq misattributed a comment about Saddam Hussein's government being "a house of cards." While some American officials had used the phrase to predict a shorter conflict and a quick collapse of the Iraqi leadership, Vice President Dick Cheney was not among them.

A rather intriguing error and correction, given that all last weekend, and talking heads all week, have attributed that quote to Cheney as though it was proof-positive that the administration's plan was flawed. Also, this indicates some pretty sloppy research by someone at the Times.

(Hat tip to Bill Kristol, appearing on Fox News Network.)

Evil. The evidence continues to mount that this regime was exactly what the Bush administration described it as: evil. The moral element of this war is clear to me, and those who attempt any form of moral equivalency between the coalition forces and the Iraqis is wearing willful blinders.
Hundreds of bundles of bone in strips of military uniform have been found by British soldiers at an abandoned Iraqi military base on the outskirts of the town of al-Zubayr.


Outside, in a courtyard, a brick wall riddled with bullets stands behind a foot-high tiled platform, with a drainage ditch running in-between.

It looks like "a purpose-built shooting gallery" says one British soldier.

Next to the courtyard, a building contains what look like cells with metal hooks hanging from racks on the ceiling - and a picture of Iraqi president Saddam Hussein.

Source: BBC NEWS | UK | 'These are all executions'

The Iraqi Version of "No Child Left Behind"
U.S. Marines were digging up a suspected chemical weapons hiding place in the courtyard of an Iraqi school southeast of Baghdad on Saturday.

The Marines said that a man who described himself as a former member of the Iraqi special forces told them that groups of Iraqi men had knocked down a wall of the girls' school two months ago, hidden something in the courtyard and then concreted it over again during the course of three nights.

Source: Reuters AlertNet - US Marines digging up suspected chemical arms site
More on Saddam: Watching that footage of "Saddam" in the streets yesterday reminds me of going to theme parks or events for kids where Mickey Mouse (or Sir Topham Hat--I took my two eldest boys to Thomas the Tank Engine yesterday) comes out for an appearance and everyone mobs him, takes pictures, shakes his hand, etc. The scene yesterday was like some perverse, Dante-esque theme park, and the stuffed Saddam mascot came out to greet the crowd.
Surprising/Intriguing: I didn't expect this move, but, I guess, neither did the Iraqis. I wonder if Saddam and his doppelganger buddies are smiling now?
An armored force of 50 American tanks and other vehicles wheeled suddenly into the center of Baghdad today, taking the city’s defenders by surprise and triggering a rolling firefight along boulevards lined with some people waving and others shooting.


"We do have troops in the city of Baghdad,'' Capt. Frank Thorp told reporters, "They're in the middle of the city.''

Source: Armored Force Comes Under Fire During Three-Hour Incursion

Delusional? If the happy, laughing man on TV yesterday was Saddam--he is either honestly believing his own disinformation, not being told the truth, or is utterly delusional. I still think something is odd about the whole thing. Why would he risk going into public like that? And what was the deal with the rather small crowd?

Source: Iraqi TV Presents a Relaxed Hussein

Getting All the Plum Jobs Now: First the Daily Mirror, then Greek TV, now: Peter Arnett now reporting for Arab channel Al-Arabiya. I am sure he will redeem himself with so many opportunities to demonstrate his journalistic skills.

Friday, April 4

As John Lemon Predicted: In feedback yesterday, JL called it: Hollywood eyes Jessica Lynch
More Progress: Elite Iraqi Guard Division Defeated -US Marines "U.S. Marines said Friday that the Nida division of the Iraqi Republican Guard had been defeated by U.S.-led forces pushing toward Baghdad from the southeast."

Thursday, April 3

More Warm Welcomes. Despite some of the doom and gloom, it does appear that there are a good number of common Iraqis who are glad we are there. I still think that once the country is secured, and Saddam and his Baathist buddies are gone, the overwhelming majority of the country will be thankful for their liberation.
In the giddy spirit of the day, nothing could quite top the wish list bellowed out by one man in the throng of people greeting American troops from the 101st Airborne Division who marched into town today.

What, the man was asked, did he hope to see now that the Baath Party had been driven from power in his town? What would the Americans bring?

"Democracy," the man said, his voice rising to lift each word to greater prominence. "Whiskey. And sexy!"


Again and again, people pointed to the sky, tilted their heads back and pointed to their open mouths. A boy, age about 6 or 7, approached an American reporter and said the two words that were uttered over and over: "America. Good." Then he kissed the reporter on the cheek, shook his hand and pointed to the sky, pleading for water.

The Shiites seemed mildly to wildly grateful for the presence of the Americans, but were curious about what it will amount to.

And we are going to have to stay long enough to get things moving in the right direction. I think that is best not only from a moral perspective (if we are going to blow everything up, we ought help pick up), and for our national security--a stable, secular, democratic Iraq is the best thing that could happen to us in the region. And I pray we don't let the UN or the Euroweenies mess things up.

Source: Exuberant Crowd's Most Urgent Request: Water

Insde the NYT's Editorial Page:
Lawrence Eagleburger, secretary of state during the first Bush administration, gave some fascinating insight into the process Wednesday night on the Fox News show Hannity & Colmes. Responding to a Hannity query, Eagleburger said: "About ten days ago, I was approached from the New York Times to write an op-ed piece. To make it very short, when I talked to them about it, I was told what we want is criticism of the administration...Needless to say, I did not write the op-ed piece."

Now, I read the Times, but it is always useful to know where editorial page editors are coming from (not that we couldn't tell...)

Source: The Times Indecent Proposal -- April 3, 2003

Progress! ABC radio is reporting that the US military has taken the Saddam International Airport, and that resistance was light. Further, there have been reports of Iraqi civilians cheering on the US troops. This comports with the mass surrenders and bus caravans that I reported earlier today.
OTB Move: James has moved Outside the Beltway off of BlogSpot onto its own domain. Give the new site a look.
More Encouraging News: U.S. - Najaf Cleric Urges Iraqis Not to Hinder Troops Thursday, Apr 03, 2003; 8:06 AM
AS SAYLIYA CAMP, Qatar - A U.S. commander in the Gulf said on Thursday that a prominent Shi'ite Muslim cleric in the holy city of Najaf had issued an edict urging Iraqis to remain calm and not to hinder U.S. invading forces. "A prominent cleric, Grand Ayatollah Sistani, who had been placed under house arrest by the regime for a considerable period of time, issued a fatwa," Brigadier General Vincent Brooks told a news conference in Qatar.

"And it was done this morning, instructing the population to remain calm and to not interfere with coalition actions. We believe this is a very significant turning point and another indicator that the Iraqi regime is approaching its end."

A Reuters correspondent in Baghdad just one week ago saw a fatwa issued by Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani still pinned to the door of a main Shi'ite mosque in the capital saying Iraqis would "stand together against any invasion."

Source: Dispatches

The Money Primary: According to WaPo John Edwards is the early leader, by about $400k over John Kerry (who isn't helping himself calling for "regime change" in DC and playing the UN card--that might all fly in Paris, but not so much 'round here these days). The article correctly notes that "frontrunner" status (which Kerry covets) is going to be determined at this point largely by money.

Of course, I still maintain that any Democrat is going to have an uphill battle against Bush, unless the war effort takes a disastrous turn, which seems unlikely to me.

And, indeed:

But another Democratic strategist noted that Dean trails Edwards, Kerry, Lieberman and probably Gephardt. "Dean doesn't get extra points [merely] because he said he was going to raise $1.5 million and got $2.6 million," the strategist said. "He's still behind. . . . You can't buy ads with 'beating expectations.' "
Eye-Witness to the Surrenders: : ABCNEWS Journalists Report From Gulf: Mike Cerre, with the 1st Marine Division north of the Tigris river 11:30 p.m. ET Wednesday, 8:30 a.m. Iraq
At dawn, buses filled with military-age men coming from Baghdad started approaching our lines asking to surrender. It's been going on for the past two hours now. It started with a bus and a van. There's now several buses. As I look down the road behind me, people are streaming out of the city just to our north and approaching our lines, asking to surrender.

Most are military-age young men who say they are civilians but you can see they have military boots. Some of them have military belts and they all have short haircuts, presuming that they are military who've been fleeing Baghdad. We were able to talk to one of the translators who said they left Baghdad last night. They got weekend passes from their officers who knew they would probably be deserting.

They're trying to make it to American lines where they feel they are safer, because if they stop at one of these towns, they'll be pressed back into service by the local political parties. The Marines are trying to process as many as they possibly can.

Another Hat Tip to Blogs of War

But, I Thought They All Hated Us: Report: Buses of Iraqis Fleeing Baghdad
Iraqi deserters and civilians are flooding out of Baghdad by the busload on Thursday and surrendering to U.S. forces advancing on the Iraqi capital, said a U.S. television reporter traveling with Marines.

Hat Tip to: Blogs of War

The Iraqi Regime: Lovers of Truth: Why al-Jazeera's man in Baghdad was kicked out
Al-Jazeera reporter Tayseer Allouni may have been ordered out of Baghdad by the Iraqi government because he tried to interview people without an official minder present, according to a senior executive at the Arabic TV news channel.


[T]he chief of al-Jazeera's Washington bureau, Hafez al-Mirazi, told CNN Allouni had angered Iraqi information ministry officials when he tried to conduct interviews without a government minder present.

Just Imagine What Special Forces Can Do Private First Class Lynch (a nineteen year-old female supply clerk) put up a fight before she was captured:
Rescued U.S. soldier Jessica Lynch shot several Iraqi soldiers prior to her capture, firing her weapon until she ran out of ammunition, The Washington Post reported on Thursday, citing U.S. officials.
The 19-year-old private first class continued firing at the Iraqis even after she sustained multiple gunshot wounds and watched several other soldiers in her unit die around her, one official told the newspaper.

Source: (Reuters) Report: Captured Woman Put Up Fierce Fight
Weighing Bad News: I was struck last night, while listening to the news, of the substantial difference between bad news for the Iraqi military and bad news for coalition forces. Yesterday, bad news for the Iraqis was that two divisions of the Republican Guard were degraded to the point that had lost most, if not all, of their military significance. Bad news for the US forces around Baghdad was the loss of a Blackhawk and and an F-18.

In no way do I mean to diminish the loss of those who died in the helicopter crash, nor the importance of the missing Navy pilot, but in macro terms, this comparison is a glaring example of the lop-sideness of this war.

Too Much Real Estate: You know you have too many palaces when describing one as "the one by the airport" isn't specific enough:

Lead units of the multi-pronged U.S. assault force were about four miles from the edge of Baghdad, and some soldiers made a brief foray into a presidential palace near Saddam International Airport.

Navy Capt. Frank Thorp, a U.S. Central Command spokesman, did not specify which of two palaces near the airport was entered.

Source: AP/Yahoo

Progress: U.S. Forces Enter Presidential Palace. And may it be so: "A U.S. spokesman said Iraqi forces appeared on the verge of collapse."
Making our Move: (Reuters) U.S. Infantry Vanguard 6 Miles from S. Baghdad "Advance armored units of the U.S. 3rd Infantry Division were just six miles from the southern edge of Baghdad on Thursday, U.S. military sources in the area told Reuters correspondent Luke Baker."

Wednesday, April 2

The 24-7 Effect: It is interesting to see how the constant coverage, especially given the live and direct nature of it, has distorted time. One would think (and indeed, it does kind of feel this way) that the war had been going on for months, not two weeks (indeed, as I write this we are still an hour shy of the two-week mark). The examples of this are rampant in the press. The headlines over the weekend, for example, that made comparisons to the quagmire of Vietnam, are illustrative. How can a quagmire develop in 10 days?

A key example tonight was Howard Fineman reporting on MSNBC about the president and how "burdened" (referencing this USA Today story) and “isolated” he has been, and talking about how the President was going to have to get out and be seen. Now, I know for a fact that the President gave a public speech last Wednesday, and I thought made at least one other public appearance since. But even if the last time was the Florida speech, it has only been a week! How can one be "isolated" after a week? The time dilation and distortion here is really remarkable.

Thanks to The Invisible Hand for Blogrolling PoliBlog.
Indeed: Mort Zuckerman column in US News states, quite correctly, the following:
Sooner, rather than later, the treacherous will get what they deserve. So it must be for the others who have betrayed our restraint and practiced a lethal deceit: What Saddam's thugs are doing on the field of battle is what France, under the leadership of President Chirac, did on the field of diplomacy.

The whole thing in worth a read. It is noteworthy its praise for both President Bush and Prime Minister Blair.

Who do you tust? Hmm, while US forces claim Iraqi rout, "Iraq's Information Minister Mohammed Saeed Sahaf has said the progress which US troops claimed to be making was erroneous." It is a tough call as to whom I should listen...

Tuesday, April 1

More Fun From France: One in three French backs Saddam
(Hat tip to Drudge)
Today's DoD News Briefing had an interesting response from General Myers. It is a bit lengthy, but worth the read, given all the criticism that has been leveled at the SecDef and the war plan in general.
Q: Secretary, I want to ask you once again about criticism from current and former officers about the flow of forces to the region and also whether there are sufficient forces in Iraq. Someone said that there should have been at least two heavy divisions before you started to fight, and there are others who criticize you for delaying signing deployment orders -- they point to the 3rd Armored Cav[alry] Regiment -- and also delaying calling up Guard and Reserve forces, that that added to some of the problems we're seeing now with lack of forces on the ground. And there are those that say that you're too enamored with air power over ground forces. I wonder if you could just comment on --

Rumsfeld: Well, why don't I --

Myers: Can I comment?

Rumsfeld: (Laughs.) Sure.

Myers: I would love to comment. My view of those reports -- and since I don't know who you're quoting, who the individuals are -- is that they're bogus. There is -- I don't know how they get started, and I don't know how they've been perpetuated, but it's not been by responsible members of the team that put this all together. They either weren't there, or they don't know, or they're working another agenda , and I don't know what that agenda might be. It is not helpful to have those kind of comments come out when we've got troops in combat, because first of all, they're false, they're absolutely wrong, they bear no resemblance to the truth, and it's just -- it's just -- harmful to our troops that are out there fighting very bravely, very courageously.

I've been in this process every step of the way as well. There is not one thing that General Franks has asked for that he hasn't gotten on the time line that we could get it to him. And it wasn't because of a late finding. It might be because we didn't have a, you know, a ship or something. But, I mean, it's not -- it's been for mechanical reasons, not because of administrative reasons, I can guarantee you that. Every member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff signed up to this plan and the way it was executed from the first day, and they'll be signed up to the last day, because we still think it's a good plan. Every member of General Franks' component commanders signed up to this plan as it was changed over time, and as it finally came down to be the one we went to war with. And they all stood up, and they gave a thumbs up to the plan.

So there may be others that have other ideas of how we should have done it. And I -- and, you know, God bless them, that's a great sport here inside the beltway. And I suppose if I -- when I retire, I'll probably have my comments, too: Gee, they ought to have more air power. (Laughter.) I wish the secretary would say we ought to be more air power-centric, perhaps. But I've never heard him say that --

Q: (Off mike.)

Myers: No. He hasn't said it. And that's not what he -- that's not -- I'm not going to speak for the secretary, but that's not the kind of comments that he's been making in this whole process. So that's -- it's been interesting, but it's not very useful to this discussion.

You know, we went in there with some very sophisticated objectives. We had diplomacy underway at the United Nations. We wanted to deploy a sufficient force, but not the kind of force that would make it look like diplomacy didn't have a chance to work. So we had to work that piece. General Franks -- and for the benefit of our troops -- wanted to protect tactical surprise. How do you protect tactical surprise when you have 250,000 troops surrounding Iraq on D-day? How do you do that? Well, you do it by the method he did it: by having the types of forces -- you do it by starting the ground war first, air war second. Do you think there was tactical surprise? I think there was. Do we have the oil fields in the south? About 60 percent of the oil wealth has been preserved for the Iraqi people. You bet. Have we had a Scud fired against Jordan or Israel yet? No. Why? Because we went in very early, even before the ground war, to secure those places. Do we have humanitarian supplies flowing into Umm Qasr now? Yes. Why? Because we put the ground forces in there early. Were we 200 miles inside Iraq in 36 hours? Yes.


Myers: General Franks is not criticizing the plan and he's the one that gets the rows for executing it. And I would only say this: that there is -- there could be a big difference in perceptions. And I'll go from the field -- and none of the perceptions are wrong, but it was like this seminar I was in at Harvard after the Gulf War. The comment was thrown out at this seminar, "Gee, the Army division commanders weren't happy with the air support they got." And I was surprised. So I called my good friend General -- at the break. I went out, put my quarter in the machine, called General Horner. And he was down -- I think commander of Space Command. I said, "General Horner, why would they say this?"

Rumsfeld: I think also it's useful to put it into some historical perspective. I don't think there's ever been a war where there haven't been people opining about this or speculating about that or second-guessing on something else. As I say, we're 10 or 11 days into this, and these things have kind of a rhythm to them, and right now we're hearing all of the complaints and concerns and questions. One of the ways you can get a sense of how knowledgeable people are is if somebody says that they were sent with half of their forces, which I read in one paper -- fact is, that's just not true. So if the person believes that, you can think, gosh, if he thinks he was sent with half his forces -- there hasn't been delays in any major thing.

Before this started, the president sat down in a secure video with General Franks and each of the component commanders before he made a decision to go forward, and he asked them a couple of questions. He said, "is this war plan a good one and will it win?" And each single person, every component commander, they said directly to the president of the United States on secure video, "absolutely."

Q: Well was --

Rumsfeld: Shh. Just listen. (Laughter.)

Then he said, "Do you have everything you need?" Simple question. These are adults. They're all four-stars. And they sat there, and they looked at the president in the eye and said "absolutely, we've got everything we need."

Now, is it, as General Myers says, perfectly possible that some person five layers down is short a meal for a day, or he his communications mixed up with somebody else's? You bet. This is an enormous process. There's something like -- what? -- 260,000 -- 300,000 people involved in this activity, and it is a monstrous task that they've performed, and they've done it brilliantly.

Myers' willingness (and zeal, I might add, as I heard this live) to answer the question and defend Rumsfeld was rather striking. Further, the litany of successes that he details is noteworthy, as are the remarks about diplomacy and the build-up.

Democrat & Chronicle: Moore explains Oscar speech. And this kind of talk, strikes me as either fantasy, or a total non sequitur: “Saddam Hussein is a brutal dictator,” he added, “and I hope he’s removed as soon as possible. But nonviolently.” (As James at OTB notes, it is like being anti-abortion, but pro-choice).

And, boy, I can hardly wait:

His next project is guaranteed to be controversial. “I’m making a film called Fahrenheit 911, the temperature at which freedom burns. It’ll be about how Bush is using 9/11 and those 3,000 lost lives as an excuse to move along his own conservative agenda.”

For example?

Intriguing: Sarin Gas Documents Seized in Iraq
Special Forces teams operating in northern Iraq have seized manuals on the production of deadly poison gases, chemical masks and other documentation in raids on the camps of Islamic militants with alleged links to the al Qaeda terror organization.

And from the same story:

As fighting raged from Basra to Baghdad, members of the 101st Airborne Division involved in street clashes in the holy Iraqi city of Najaf were given new rules of engagement, ABCNEWS has learned.

A high-ranking military source told ABCNEWS that they were now permitted to fire upon all buildings, including residences and buildings of religious or historical value.

The change in orders came about after U.S. military officials say they learned that Iraqi forces were using religious landmarks as shields and hiding anti-aircraft artillery next to mosques.

Indeed: "That Arnett took his star turn on Iraqi state television and spoke seriously to a uniformed member of the Iraqi military indicates that he possesses the credulousness of a child, not the judgment of a seasoned reporter."

The piece itself is worth a read, and probably ought to be entitled "Why Arnett Shouldn't Have Been Hired in the First Place," rather than "Sacking Arnett for the Wrong Reason"

War Summary

Noteworthy stuff:

  • The Republican Guard's Medina division, massed south of Baghdad, and the Hammurabi division, north of the city, have been targeted by "tremendous sorties," McChrystal said at a Pentagon briefing. He said two other divisions have also been targeted, and that initial assessments show that the Medina division's strength might have been cut in half.

  • The Kurdish militia, the Peshmerga, said about 1,000 Iraqi soldiers have surrendered along the northern front line separating Kurdish areas from those controlled by the Iraqi regime.

  • Elements of the U.S. Army's 101st Airborne Division seized an airfield on the outskirts of Najaf. The strip will be used by military transport planes once it is cleared of mines, military officials said.

  • Fighting also continued around Nasiriya and Samawa, where U.S. officials said 50 Iraqi soldiers and 100 members of a paramilitary group were captured.

  • British forces said they've secured the western part of Basra, Iraq's second-largest city

  • Clean water began flowing Monday from Kuwait to the southern Iraqi port city of Umm Qasr through a pipeline that will provide about 600,000 gallons of fresh water a day, Brooks said. Iraqi forces had cut off water supplies to the city.


Monday, March 31

That didn't take long: Britain's Mirror Hires Fired Veteran Arnett. Of course it is something of a step down.
Remarkable: 8,700 Bombs, Missiles Launched at Iraq, U.S.says. And, I should think: "We are seeing significant degradation of those forces"
Musings. It just occurred to me: what if instead of hearing every night about how the best case scenario did not occur (i.e., the cakewalk thesis didn't play out), we heard about how the worst case scenario did not occur? I know that there has been some reference to the lack of an attack on Israel, the lack of a flood of refugees, etc. Still, it is most remarkable the degree to which many in the press seem most eager to talk about the administration having to rethink its plan (which, actually, I think is an incorrect characterization--I suspect the administration did plan for the failure of the cakewalk. Indeed, the ignorance of many in the press is staggering--they seem to actually think that the US military goes into a place with only one plan, and if that fails they start from scratch...), rather than talk about all that has gone right.
John Leo's US News column is worth a looksee. A taste: "The Hitlerization of Bush is particularly outlandish since there already is a rather obvious Hitler figure in this drama." Indeed.
Fighting and Liberation: Fareed Zakaria's column in Newsweek is worth a read. His tone is a bit more critical than I would prefer, but the basics are on target.

And, I think this is essentially correct:

Many Iraqis will celebrate Saddam’s fall. Others will be angered by a foreign invasion. But most will be on guard to see what happens after the war. That is when America will vindicate itself, if it truly helps to build a new Iraq. After all, the Germans and the Japanese did not cheer in 1945 but they were grateful by 1955. America will win the Iraqis over not by what it does in the next five weeks but rather in the next five years.

Although I do think that ultimately there is going to be some serious jubilation when Saddam is utterly toppled. Still, the true liberalization of Iraq is going to take time, and I hope that we are adequately committed to that process. Not only is it the right thing to do, it is also the path that will lead to more security for the United States.

"Believe it or not, we're winning" A good piece by Mark Steyn. And, indeed:
An innovative war is going very well, and none of the ''setbacks'' are unexpected, despite the Saddamites' determination in their death throes to plumb new depths in depravity. The allied loss of life is wretched for the families involved but strategically significant only as a historically unprecedented low: Just for the record, there have been 10 American combat deaths to approximately 1,000 Iraqi combat deaths, and there is no reason to believe that ratio will change unless Saddam's conscripts start surrendering faster. It was Stalin who said cynically that one death is a tragedy, a million is a statistic. The fact that CNN was able to lapse into its default individual-tragedy mode with soft-focus profiles of each American POW is, in fact, confirmation of how badly the Baathists are doing.

He makes several good point--give it a read.

More Blogs in the news: Bloggers’ Delight
Bad Day in General for "Journalists":
The U.S. military is expelling Fox News Channel's unfortunate hire Geraldo Rivera from the country, CNN reported today.

CNN quotes U.S. military officials as saying Geraldo violated "the cardinal rule of war reporting Monday by giving away crucial details of future military operations during a live broadcast." It gave no further information.


Hook'Em Yet Again!: Texas is finally in the Final Four for the first time since 1947.
In the "He'll Never Learn" Category (not to mention probably never get another serious job in US): NBC Fires Arnett After Iraq TV Interview. Between his escapades in the first Gulf War, anf then making stuff up for CNN a few years later, and now this, one guesses he is truly done with major networks in the US.

And I would not wear this as a badge of honor:

He said the Iraqis allowed him to stay in Baghdad because they respect him.

"The Iraqis have let me stay because they see me as a fellow warrior," Arnett said. "They know I might not agree with them, but I've got their respect."

Sunday, March 30

BTW, John Lemon is back from vacation.
It strikes me as odd that in every picture of Saddam since the war started, there is always some kind of curtain behind him (although the curtain itself varies) and he is always sitting. Plus, why haven't they just issued a video that is 100% conclusive? Most strange.

Fox had a picture that had Saddam's bodyguard in it, but no Saddam. Apparently the bodyguard has never been photgraphed without Saddam present in 15 years. Also strange, but I have not had time to see if there is further news or analysis of this situation.

So, I wonder how many people still think that there is no way, no how, that secular Saddam would ever work with Islamic fundamentalist terrorists.