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US Military Taunts Saddam(24 posts)

US Military Taunts SaddamCaptain Morgan
Mar 31, 2003 1:38 PM
The Pentagon challenged Saddam Hussein to make a live appearance if he wants to prove he is alive. (from ABCNews):

Twelve days after U.S. decapitation strikes targeted a Baghdad suburb marking the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Pentagon spokeswoman Victoria Clarke today criticized the Iraqi president for not making a single live appearance.

"Since the coalition bombed Saddam's headquarters at the very beginning of the war, the world has neither seen his hide nor hair, only tapes," said Clarke. "We have not seen his sons."

Clarke's comments came hours after Iraqi TV showed taped images of Saddam with his two sons, Odai and Qusai. The footage was broadcast after Iraqi state TV resumed its service early today following heavy overnight strikes on the Ministry of Information.
why don't they just report him dead and see if he counters? nmDougSloan
Mar 31, 2003 1:41 PM
I like your idea, exceptCaptain Morgan
Mar 31, 2003 1:53 PM
There might be a chance that the regime has a video tape saying "I'm not dead." However, our "challenge" is uniquely specific and perhaps a little bit more difficult to respond to directly via a prerecorded video tape. Either way, I cannot wait to hear Iraq's response.
Initially they said he should make an appearance with...TJeanloz
Mar 31, 2003 2:17 PM
A week or so ago, they pointed out that he could easily have a reference to a particular date on a tape - like having a copy of that days newspaper lying around; but he has yet to do anything of the sort...
More amateur hour at the Pentagon.czardonic
Mar 31, 2003 2:00 PM
I guess they thing Saddam is pretty stupid. But it takes real stupidity to think that Saddam can be taunted into exposing himself.

Of course they probably think that Saddam will become a laughing stock in the Arab world if he doesn't call their bluff and sign himself up for a Tomahawk-a-gram. You, know, like Bin Laden lost all that popularity after he went on the lamb.

The Whitehouse is already re-treading their "this campaign was never about any one man" campaign. Its only a matter of time before the name Saddam Hussein disappears from this administration's vocabulary altogether.
Actually, there is SOME credibility to the tactic.sn69
Mar 31, 2003 2:05 PM
Take night #1, for example. ...The Pentagon releases a report that Tariq Aziz is in negotiations to defect. Shortly thereafter, SH and TA are on their cell phones, the latter assuring the former that all is well and that he isn't defecting. At the same time, our SIGINT aircraft triangulate SH's location and the TLAMs are re-programed. Blamo. Whether or not he's dead remains to be seen. The point I'm making with regards to your first sentence is that it has worked once...why not try it again?
So you think he'd fall for the same trick twice? (nm)czardonic
Mar 31, 2003 2:17 PM
He mightMcAndrus
Mar 31, 2003 2:31 PM
Sooner or later he has to -prove- he's alive if he wants to keep the fear of Saddam in his forces.

If he's not alive then his top guys are hiding his death (or dismemberment) to keep discipline and morale up. Sooner or later they have to produce the goods.

Personally, I love the idea.
It's one of those ideas so silly it might work. nmsn69
Mar 31, 2003 2:55 PM
Could also backfire. . .czardonic
Mar 31, 2003 4:24 PM
. . .if the Iraqi people get the idea that the United States, in its inability to find and eliminate Saddam, is reduced to this kind of amateurish gamesmanship.

I don' think it really matters anyway. There seems to be a larger than expected number of die-hards willing to fight this one out, Saddam or not. This appears to be a case where the decapitated body has retained the ability to lash out.
Could also backfire. . .sn69
Mar 31, 2003 5:01 PM
I got some word of a different nature this afternoon, specifically addressing Fedayeen activity and their use of kidnapping as a means to "motivate" the otherwise ambivalent non-Ba'athe populace.

As with everything else, we'll have to see how it plays out.

I don't, however, consider this amateurish gamesmanship. Most everything CENTCOM is doing is measured, weighed and planned for a specific result or effect. That is, it is when they are doing that which they do best--fight wars. What is far more disturbing is potential interference from the non-uniformed elements of DOD.

At the same time, stupid, childish, theatrical "expectations" on the part of the western media machine in its never-ending quest to generate revenue have largely resulted in a minor crisis in faith. It's a war. War sucks. War isn't tidy, nor does it end quickly. I'm starting to feel that the only reason the media is coming to terms with that is because their Nielson ratings plunged over the weekend as their viewing audience decided that this isn't quite the reality tv show that the exectives were hoping it would be.

At no time was it assumed that there would be a lack of armed opposition...at least not from the military. The war-games that IV Corps commander referred to were designed to counter an enemy that fought under certain key assumptions. Surrendering as a pretense to attack wasn't one of them. It's probably going to be increasingly important to seperate the military's assumptions from those of the academic neo-cons.
I don't know if the media is solely at fault.czardonic
Mar 31, 2003 6:35 PM
If anything, I think that any unreasonable expectations are the result of an cocky administraion and a bizarrely starstruck Washington press-corps.

Rumsfeld, Cheney, and the various hangers on that one never knows whether or not to consider part of the administration sold us an easy war. True, it turns out that they were smart enough to not say it outright, but the suits in Washington sewed the seeds and then did little to dispell the notion of a "cakewalk" featuring "dancing in the streets" by the newly liberated.

Anyway, I think Victoria Clarke is a bureaucrat, not part of the military. (To her credit, she did scold a few reporters for referring to "shock and awe" as a "show".)
Good pointsn69
Mar 31, 2003 6:40 PM
I think that's a fair summation. You're right..."it takes two to tango," so to speak.

Humorously, I was talking with my Chief of Staff today who, incidentally, is a HARD CORE conservative. He agreed with me that the DOD putz who coined "shock and awe" (yes, it has been attributed to a uniformed member) should be sent to man a radar DEW station in Greenland.

Did you, by chance, find any Tigers stuff this weekend? I'm sorry--I didn't look for it. I worked/flew a mission on Saturday, and my bride had me painting a bathroom on Sunday after my morning ride.
No time to search for Tigers this weekend.czardonic
Mar 31, 2003 7:08 PM
I did snag a deal on the entire Cowboy Bebop series on DVD from Amazon on Friday though. I haven't seen any of it yet, but I've heard nothing but raves.

Speaking of god-forsaken radar stations, did you read Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon?
You might be missing the pointCaptain Morgan
Mar 31, 2003 2:07 PM
I read into it that this is part of the psych ops campaign in which they are attempting to break moral and create more of an uprising against the regime. Saddam's apparent death would help in that ragard.

However, I do acknowledge that they would probably welcome evidence of his location!
I got it. I think Saddam will get it too, if alive. (nm)czardonic
Mar 31, 2003 2:21 PM
I heard we did not know what happened to Hitler for years nmDougSloan
Mar 31, 2003 2:09 PM
Hitler is still aliveKristin
Mar 31, 2003 2:16 PM
He's living in Graceland with Elvis.
oh, my; don't say that around any Memphis people nmDougSloan
Mar 31, 2003 2:17 PM
Graceland..my dear..no....ClydeTri
Mar 31, 2003 2:31 PM
That is Walt Disney...Hitler is frozen like Ted Williams in Arizona...
LOL. I must have been confusedKristin
Mar 31, 2003 2:38 PM
With all this talk about democrats and repulicans and librarians, how's one suposed to keep track of deak dictator's and film makers? Do you think Hitler would have like Disney World? Perhaps if it had been around sooner and he had visited "Its a small world" as a young boy, WWII would never have happened.
Graceland..my dear..no....Alpedhuez55
Mar 31, 2003 3:51 PM
And here I was thinking he was living in Uruguay. I remember when one of the tabloids had pictures from his 100th birthday party ;)

P.J. O'Rourke did a great essay on that country. He said it is a pleasant place to walk around, with little boys and girls in school uniforms. Then you will walk by an antique store with Nazi helmets and uniforms.

Mike Y.
re: US Military Taunts Saddamrufus
Mar 31, 2003 5:37 PM
`*clanking three bottles on the end of his fingers together*

"oh saaaadaaaam! come out and plaay-yaay!

saaaadaaaam! come out and plaay-yaay!"
Great scene from "The Warriors" (nm)Captain Morgan
Apr 1, 2003 5:48 AM