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The ‘hole’ story

According to an account from Major Bryan Reed, an operations officer for the US army’s 4th infantry division, in an exchange before he was pulled from the hole in the ground he was sheltering in, the former dictator said to US troops in English:

“My name is Saddam Hussein. I am the president of Iraq and I want to negotiate.” US special forces replied “regards from President Bush”.

11 comments to The ‘hole’ story

  • mad dog

    Saddam was digging himself into a hole and coalition forces pulled him out of it….? Is this a change in tactics since “the restaurant” episode?

    Things would have been different in my day, etc.


    DECEMBER 14, 2004

    After weeks of hiding, Howard Dean is cornered by journalists in an ice fishing shack on Lake Champlain, Vermont. The once combative Dean emerges disheveled, bedraggled and unshaven. “I am the titular head of the Democratic party,” he says, “and I want to negotiate.”

  • Doug Collins

    Sometime – for at least for a few days – before he is executed, I hope some good psychologists get a chance to examine Saddam. All the other psychopathic mass murderers managed to die before they could be dissected. We have had remote control psychoanalyses of Hitler and Stalin, but no one, to date, has ground-truthed any of that.

    When one considers the massive damage these types of aberrent individuals have caused to societys over the last few centuries (getting more severe as time goes on, I might add) and the relative ease they have had in gaining power in case after case, it would be a pity to lose the chance to examine one of them when we have it.

  • ed

    I couldn’t imagine that the analysis of Saddam’s personality would be much more complex than “he didn’t give a rat’s a** about anyone else”. That is all it takes to achieve the same result. You simply have to view people as a renewable resource.

  • Doug Collins

    You are no doubt correct about Saddam’s lack of any concern whatsoever about anyone else. The problem is that there are vast numbers of our fellow humans (I use the term loosely) who share his outlook. Yet very few of them can induce large numbers of their countrymen to enthusiastically follow them, subvert their country and murder their fellows. Even fewer can do this without alarming the victims until it is too late.

    People like Hitler, Stalin, Lenin and Saddam as well as older specimens like Napoleon and perhaps Louis XIV and Cromwell have more to them than merely not giving a rat’s ass. I’m not by any means suggesting that we keep Saddam around any longer than necessary. I am just pointing out the fact that this is the first time in human history that we have one of these recurring monsters available for study. If we could learn something that would keep another one from reaching power, it would be tragic to lose the chance to learn it.

    We might find that we have one or two more gestating somewhere right now.

  • The important question, raised by Rand Simberg, is whether Saddam saw his shadow when he came out of the hole.

  • Martin Adamson

    I never knew he spoke English. He never gave any signs of it when being interviewed by those Titans of The Left, Tony Benn and George Galloway.

    Then again, he’s had a long time to practise that one phrase, I suppose. “*I* am the President of Iraq”, “I am THE President of Iraq”, “I am the PRESIDENT of Iraq”, “I am the Negotiate of Iraq and I want to president – oh BUGGER!!!”…..I hope it came out the way he wanted it to.

  • Verity

    I think we ought to put him and 12 other dictators – Mugabe, various Africans scattered tastefully through the south of France, etc – on The Weakest Link and let Anne Robinson grill them.

    As each one was voted off by his fellows, instead of seeing them give their comments, we would hear a gunshot.

    The final two could fight a duel with pistols. I don’t know what could happen to the winner. A free dinner for two with Anne Robinson?

  • mad dog

    Arm the dictators! Let them kill each other. It’s an infallible method that has worked perfectly up to date…

  • Verity

    I see that on the dear old Beeb website they’re reporting that some Arab newspapers, and one of Saddam’s daughters, are claiming that Saddam was drugged or gassed when he was captured. They report this as though, if true, that somewhat unsporting gesture made the capture invalid.

  • The challenge was finding his hidey hole. Finding it based on the tuft of carpet which wasn’t buried was sporting enough.

    What they are doing is making excuses for him. Surely if we hadn’t prevented him from doing so he would have gloriously martyred himself down in that stinking pit.