Patterico's Pontifications


Life Outdoes the Onion

Filed under: Buffoons,General,Morons,War — Patterico @ 9:09 pm

A Guardian op-ed is titled Saddam: A Tribute. (Via Allah.)

And indeed, it is (seriously) a tribute to Saddam.

But it’s so much more.

Sure, it praises Saddam’s Iraq:

Within Iraq itself, a secular state offered women opportunities unimaginable in nearby countries, and provided a standard of living far from unreasonable by the standards of the developing world.

And surmises that it might have been good for Saddam to develop the bomb:

Had he acquired nuclear weapons, this might have proved a useful check on Iran’s regional ambitions.

But it’s also a song of praise for Stalinist totalitarianism:

Living under tyranny may not be ideal, but it is not impossible. In the Soviet Union, life took on a character of its own, in which the human spirit managed to flourish in spite of the political constraints. The literature generated in those conditions can still inspire us. Today, many former Soviet citizens feel no more free under the yoke of global capitalism than they did before, and some would like to see the return of Stalinism.

as well as the Chinese variety:

The people of China seem in no rush to jettison a regime that holds out the prospect of prosperity at the expense only of liberty.

Perhaps a more accurate title would be “A Paean to Repressive Regimes.”

Except that the guy does appear to find one regime too oppressive . . . Britain’s:

Even in Britain, our supposed attachment to our supposed freedom turns out to be tenuous. We seem content to toss aside ancient liberties in the face of a dubious war on terror, and we live, cheerily enough, under a regime of surveillance that the KGB might have envied.

You can’t make this stuff up, folks. Just as truth is sometimes stranger than fiction, real pieces in the Guardian are sometimes weirder than humor pieces in the Onion.

9 Responses to “Life Outdoes the Onion”

  1. That is the weirdest damn thing I’ve ever read.

    Linus (c376df)

  2. I think it’s called amoral realism. It’s the sort of stuff Kissinger claims to believe in. His fragile ego gets in the way of course.

    I repeat:
    In 1963 Britain and Israel backed American intervention in Iraq, while other United States allies — chiefly France and Germany — resisted. But without significant opposition within the government, Kennedy, like President Bush today, pressed on. In Cairo, Damascus, Tehran and Baghdad, American agents marshaled opponents of the Iraqi regime. Washington set up a base of operations in Kuwait, intercepting Iraqi communications and radioing orders to rebels. The United States armed Kurdish insurgents. The C.I.A.’s ‘’Health Alteration Committee,’’ as it was tactfully called, sent Kassem a monogrammed, poisoned handkerchief, though the potentially lethal gift either failed to work or never reached its victim.

    Then, on Feb. 8, 1963, the conspirators staged a coup in Baghdad. For a time the government held out, but eventually Kassem gave up, and after a swift trial was shot; his body was later shown on Baghdad television. Washington immediately befriended the successor regime. ‘’Almost certainly a gain for our side,’’ Robert Komer, a National Security Council aide, wrote to Kennedy the day of the takeover.

    As its instrument the C.I.A. had chosen the authoritarian and anti-Communist Baath Party, in 1963 still a relatively small political faction influential in the Iraqi Army. According to the former Baathist leader Hani Fkaiki, among party members colluding with the C.I.A. in 1962 and 1963 was Saddam Hussein, then a 25-year-old who had fled to Cairo after taking part in a failed assassination of Kassem in 1958.

    According to Western scholars, as well as Iraqi refugees and a British human rights organization, the 1963 coup was accompanied by a bloodbath. Using lists of suspected Communists and other leftists provided by the C.I.A., the Baathists systematically murdered untold numbers of Iraq’s educated elite — killings in which Saddam Hussein himself is said to have participated. No one knows the exact toll, but accounts agree that the victims included hundreds of doctors, teachers, technicians, lawyers and other professionals as well as military and political figures.

    The United States also sent arms to the new regime, weapons later used against the same Kurdish insurgents the United States had backed against Kassem and then abandoned. Soon, Western corporations like Mobil, Bechtel and British Petroleum were doing business with Baghdad — for American firms, their first major involvement in Iraq.

    Alois Fahyling (6aa211)

  3. Actually it is pretty silly. But he;s right about Iran, and you worry about them a lot right?

    Alois Fahyling (6aa211)

  4. Again with the Roger Morris, eh AF? He’s little more than a silly old crank who hasn’t had any sort of influence since the Nixon Administration. I don’t care of the NYTimes op-ed pages run his blatherings, and I am not going to pay him any more deference than I would to Ramsey Clark.

    JVW (7f6ca5)

  5. […] Paterico’s Pontifications links to a post by  David Cox at the UK’s Guardian Comment is free: Saddam: a tribute. The article is so full of absolute nonsense that Paterico calls his post "Life Outdoes the Onion," referring to the satirical web site.  […]

    What the Heck was I Thinking!? :: Maybe Mark Steyn is Right :: November :: 2006 (2f634e)

  6. What a disgusting article by Mr. Cox. The disgust only increases as you read the comments. The fever swamp isn’t only here at Daily Kos or DU. As I post at my blog, maybe Mark Steyn is right about the demise of Europe.
    Great post on your part, Paterico. Good find (if that makes sense in describing that absolute Orwellian fool!)

    Steve G. (feb53c)

  7. That’s an awful piece, but I’m not sure that is a Guardian op-ed. It is posted at their group blog site, “Comment is Free”, which is written partly by people who work for the Guardian, and partly by others.

    From his profile, I conclude that David Cox does not work for the Guardian. So Cox deserves all the blame for this — though it is bad enough so that they should drop him.

    Jim Miller (823043)

  8. There you have it, the Left’s insatiable need to suck up to dictators. Walter Duranty couldn’t resist Stalin, Jimmy Carter never met a totalitarian he didn’t like, and Castro can’t get a moment’s peace without some Lefty sycophant showing up for a photo op. Hugo Chavez has the same problem.

    What it is about individual freedom and liberty that so discomforts “Progressives” that they flock to brutal dictators like moths to a flame?

    mokus (56972e)

  9. “There you have it, the Left’s insatiable need to suck up to dictators.”

    “Saddam had tied down revolutionary Iran, the most potentially destructive force in the region, in an eight-year war, at the expense of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi casualties. Any Islamic terrorists found on Iraqi territory were summarily executed. The Middle Eastern oil that underpins our society, and therefore the values that our Prime Minister holds so dear, flowed freely into our refineries.

    Remember that photo of Rumsfeld shaking his hand

    Alois Fahyling (6aa211)

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