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CatWoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-29-06 05:24 PM
Original message
Josh Marshall provides insight, re: Saddam
http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/011729.php



(December 29, 2006 -- 12:05 PM EDT)

It's a hornet's nest. But I'm game. So why not jump in.

"Bush administration officials" are telling CNN that Saddam Hussein will be hanged this weekend. Convention dictates that we precede any discussion of this execution with the obligatory nod to Saddam's treachery, bloodthirsty rule and tyranny. But enough of the cowardly chatter. This thing is a sham, of a piece with the whole corrupt, disastrous sham that the war and occupation have been. Bush administration officials are the ones who leak the news about the time of the execution. One key reason we know Saddam's about to be executed is that he's about to be transferred from US to Iraqi custody, which tells you a lot. And, of course, the verdict in his trial gets timed to coincide with the US elections.

This whole endeavor, from the very start, has been about taking tawdry, cheap acts and dressing them up in a papier-mache grandeur -- phony victory celebrations, ersatz democratization, reconstruction headed up by toadies, con artists and grifters. And this is no different. Hanging Saddam is easy. It's a job, for once, that these folks can actually see through to completion. So this execution, ironically and pathetically, becomes a stand-in for the failures, incompetence and general betrayal of country on every other front that President Bush has brought us.

Try to dress this up as an Iraqi trial and it doesn't come close to cutting it -- the Iraqis only take possession of him for the final act, sort of like the Church always left execution itself to the 'secular arm'. Try pretending it's a war crimes trial but it's just more of the pretend mumbojumbo that makes this out to be World War IX or whatever number it is they're up to now.

The Iraq War has been many things, but for its prime promoters and cheerleaders and now-dwindling body of defenders, the war and all its ideological and literary trappings have always been an exercise in moral-historical dress-up for a crew of folks whose times aren't grand enough to live up to their own self-regard and whose imaginations are great enough to make up the difference. This is just more play-acting.

These jokers are being dragged kicking and screaming to the realization that the whole thing's a mess and that they're going to be remembered for it -- defined by it -- for decades and centuries. But before we go, we can hang Saddam. Quite a bit of this was about the president's issues with his dad and the hang-ups he had about finishing Saddam off -- so before we go, we can hang the guy as some big cosmic 'So There!'

Marx might say that this was not tragedy but farce. But I think we need to get way beyond options one and two even to get close to this one -- claptrap justice meted out to the former dictator in some puffed-up act of self-justification as the country itself collapses in the hands of the occupying army.

Marty Peretz, with some sort of projection, calls any attempt to rain on this parade "prissy and finicky." Myself, I just find it embarrassing. This is what we're reduced to, what the president has reduced us to. This is the best we can do. Hang Saddam Hussein because there's nothing else this president can get right.

What do you figure this farce will look like 10, 30 or 50 years down the road? A signal of American power or weakness?




-- Josh Marshall


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ninkasi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-29-06 06:55 PM
Response to Original message
1. Great article
and well put. He writes "This is what we're reduced to, what the president has reduced us to. This is the best we can do. Hang Saddam Hussein because there's nothing else this president can get right."

Incredible, that one incompetent man can cause so much pain and death. Impeach him now. We've got to find a way to stop this senseless killing and ruined lives. K&R
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Skinner ADMIN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 08:40 AM
Response to Original message
2. I'm going to kick this. (nt)
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symbolman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 08:49 AM
Response to Original message
3. Me too.
This is some of the best writing I've seen in a long time. No conjecture here, no tin foil, nothing but the goddamn Truth layed bare for all to see.

The Mayberry Machiavellians, the gang that can't shoot straight finally do something 'right'.

Why didn't they just toss Saddam in the air and let Cheney shoot him like one of his hand fed, bred in captivity Pheasants, who never had a chance from the start?

"We're gonna give ya a fair trial and then we're gonna hang ya." Quick, what COWBOY movie was that, and which one is THIS?
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maine_raptor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 08:54 AM
Response to Original message
4. Just K & R'ed it too
Once again Josh has put to type THE central point of this whole sorry episode: That the fate of Saddam is "a stand-in for the failures, incompetence and general betrayal of country on every other front that President Bush has brought us".

Many say that we went into Iraq for Oil, Wealth, etc., but for me, I truly believe that in deepest recesses of the mind of Bush none of that mattered. For George it was all about getting the guy that tried to kill his Dad. Congrats, Mr. President, "Mission Accomplished".

Too bad you had to ruin two countries in order to finally get something "right".
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NashVegas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 09:30 AM
Response to Original message
5. It's a Total Farce
Does anyone in Washington believe that all the incendiaries going off while Saddam's been sitting in lock-up were intended to re-instate him as ruler, should we pull out?
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kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 09:32 AM
Response to Original message
6. Josh is almost always very close to the truth..
I always read his comments.
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NashVegas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 09:34 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. Almost
;)

There are occasions when I think he's putting his own spin on some party marching orders (or partying offers) but mostly, he's quite keen.
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Oilwellian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 10:10 AM
Response to Original message
8. Josh is spot on
Clearly, Bush has weakened our nation in many ways.

K&R
:kick:
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fishnfla Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 10:17 AM
Response to Original message
9. "there's nothing else this president can get right" well, even this
was handled poorly, IMO. all this helter skelter hush-hush lack of transparancy
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charlie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 10:32 AM
Response to Original message
10. That's a near-polemic
Marshall has for years used a sedate stick-to-the-facts style in his writing. But not lately. Bush has finally uncorked Marshall's inner beast. At long last. It's good to see.
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Octafish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 10:48 AM
Response to Original message
11. History's judgement will not be kind to these nutjobs.
So let's add as much as we can to the record.



It's the least we can do for the Truth's sake.
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Hamlette Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 11:29 AM
Response to Original message
12. thanks for posting...
I saw this last night but I wasn't awake enough to appreciate this line: "a crew of folks whose times aren't grand enough to live up to their own self-regard and whose imaginations are great enough to make up the difference".

Probably the best description of the Bush administration, in all its endeavors, I've ever read. Remember this is the prez who was going to cut taxes to force a downsizing of gov't, including eliminating social security, when all the while he's been growing gov't because he's afraid, afraid mostly of losing elections. The only thing 9/11 changed ("it changed everything") is this: It allowed Bush to believe his bullshit about God wanting him to be prez and then giving him this "challenge" so he could remake the world. Where's that hurl icon when I need it?

May history remember them the way Josh has so accurately described them.
k&r

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Beetwasher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 11:32 AM
Response to Original message
13. Couldn't Have Said It Better
Yup, "farcical" pretty much somes it up.
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ljm2002 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 12:55 PM
Response to Original message
14. Yes, it was great to read that...
...for once Josh lets loose and it is some terrific commentary.
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Garbo 2004 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 01:19 PM
Response to Original message
15. K&R. n/t
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King Coal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 01:32 PM
Response to Original message
16. Way to go, Cat. K&R
Thanks! :hi:

Bush loves a good lychin'.
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TahitiNut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 01:39 PM
Response to Original message
17. Here's exactly what Josh Marshall is describing. The kabuki of political necrophilia.
Deja vu.



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WillyT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 01:53 PM
Response to Original message
18. Exactly...
K & R !!!

:kick:
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ooglymoogly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-30-06 06:29 PM
Response to Original message
19. thanks for putting it bluntly where it belongs nt
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