As you probably already know, Marc Danziger has his post up on Jamil Hussein. As he says, it’s not quite what he’d expected to post. Go to this link to read it. I’ll offer commentary in an update when I get time.
UPDATE: If you’re looking for analysis now — and frankly, better analysis than I’ll likely be able to give — go to Allah at Hot Air. Allah tells you what’s important about Marc’s post in the light of what we already knew. This is the sort of thing Allah does better than anyone.
I agree with him that “Armed Liberal did yeoman’s work but the results, alas, didn’t match the hype.” In my own update, I’ll explain a little more of what I expected to see, and why I thought it would be important.
Some of that, by the way, may be yet to come.
UPDATE x2: Here’s what got me excited. When I spoke to him by phone, Marc told me that it looked like Jam(a)il Hussein was indeed at the Yarmouk station, but 1) wasn’t even a Captain; 2) was a Baathist holdover (much as Maj. Jeff Pool had predicted in my “third way” post); and 3) had a poor reputation for honesty. I’m not talking out of school here — Marc says this in today’s post:
[A]fter some calls, IMs, and e-mail we get a call back by Sat night (California time)/Sunday morning (Baghdad time); there is no Capt. Jamil Hussein at Yarmouk, but there is a Sergeant by that name, with a somewhat dubious reputation (worked directly under Uday, Baathist remnant, etc.).
This, to me, seemed like potentially important information. However, further investigation complicated the picture, as you can see from Marc’s post.
Also, Marc said he was working on getting pictures of all four mosques alleged to have been burned. Again, he mentions this in his post:
[T]wo different sources in Hurriyah confirm that at least two of the mosques in question are just fine, are standing strong, a couple of bullet marks on them, but that’s nothing out of the ordinary. We also hear that they are closed for worship from fear of retaliatory attacks. There are two other mosques there that were claimed to have been attacked (the claim was later reduced to one) and we’ll see if we can get some pictures of them all, at which point we’ll have some facts to report.
So as of when I hyped his post, it was looking like: 1) Jam(a)il Hussein had been located and determined to be a noncredible Saddam holdover; and 2) we might have the first real photographic proof I’ve seen that four mosques were not burned, despite the AP‘s original claim that they were.
That seemed hypeworthy to me — although I loaded my post with caveats like:
If everything comes together the way he hopes it will . . .
If he’s able to put together what he told me about on the phone . . .
. . . if this comes together . . .
I think we’re still waiting to see, frankly. Marc’s post doesn’t tell us everything about “Who is Jam(a)il Hussein” — but it tells us something. What that is, exactly, is not clear. We need more time and information to see what the significance of his work really is.
And we may never know for sure.
To some extent, as Marc says, “I think we discovered something, but it turns out probably not to have been useful.” Except that more information is always useful, to the extent it leads us closer to the truth. The worry is that the truth will remain ever elusive, but that’s not a reason to fail to seek it.
Me, I’m still interested to see those pictures . . . and Marc says they may be coming.
UPDATE x3: After further reflection and another conversation with Marc, I think he’s found a lot. Rather than explain it in a new update, I’m going to do a new post.