Recent press coverage of good ol’ cuddly Saddam Hussein, that lovable neatnik who dispenses advice to the young GIs responsible for guarding him, has reminded me of past coverage of “lovable” tyrants like Fidel Castro and, most of all, “Uncle Joe” Stalin. I’m somewhat hardened to this kind of thing, but Iraqi-American Haider Ajina is understandably bewildered:
Recently most of the mainstream media have been promoting a human side to Saddam. Poor old Uncle Saddam, as it were. If this goes on we will soon forget what this man has done. We must not forget the evil this man is and what he has done, lest we wish history to repeat itself.
Saddam Hussein has not a thread of humanity in him. Every act of his is cold and calculated with an end purpose in mind. That purpose being self-preservation and self-indulgence at the cost of all others and at what ever means possible. Saddam has been a thug since his teenage years. He was implicated and later convicted of attempting to assassinate Iraqi prime minister Abdel-Karim Qassem in 1958. Later he was implicated in the mysterious death of his Baathist predecessor Bakar after Baker retired. Shortly after Saddam became president in 1979, he convened a high level Baathist meeting during which he had close allies and friends escorted out of the meeting room and shot, just for being to close to him. Saddam then proceeded to rule Iraq with an Iron fist. He gassed the Kurds, bombed the Shiites, attacked the Iranians, attacked the Kuwaitis, sponsored terrorist camps, financed terrorists, (one of his personal body guards trained in Afghanistan at an Al Qaeda camp), murdered over 1 million Iraqis, maimed, tortured and raped many more for political reasons, orphaned his grandchildren. The list goes on and on.
I ask you are the above acts those of a human being?
Saddam is evil personified: a thug, a mass murderer, a rapist, a torturer. He is not a poor old man stuck in isolation, nor does he deserve any sympathy for his current condition. We must never forget what this man and others of his ilk have done to humanity, unless we wish it to happen again and again.
All true. But, in the eyes of many journalists and policitians, secondary to Saddam’s more important status as the enemy of George W. Bush. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend,” and all that. So don’t look for the humanization of Saddam to stop any time soon. It will be interesting to see how the western media cover his trial.