New Column: Aftermath of a Hanging
This week's column is about the end of Saddam, and the gaggle of commentators who took issue with the circumstances: Aftermath of a Hanging.
I argue that the detractors have swooped down to a new low, and that they would have found other reasons to decry the execution even if had been pulled off perfectly: "Why wasn’t the execution chamber heated to 72 degrees? Was the rope too itchy? Did you get they skimp out on the rope? Why didn’t they play soothing music? Maybe they should have hired a string quartet? Did Saddam get a final meal? Did he get a bag of Doritos, his favorite snack, right before the end?"
In this column, I discuss a cartoon by Tom Toles that I had written about in the early days of Talisman Gate.
Also today, the New York Times has finally realized that Saddam was an evil totalitarian nightmare--but only after he admitted it himself on tape. John Burns has a front-page story about Saddam's tapes where he discusses using chemical weapons against Iraqi civilians and casually estimates that it will kill thousands and destroy the environment. The tone of Mr. Burns' piece seemed to be one of surprise; it seems that it took Saddam himself to spell it out in order for the journalist and his editors to believe it. Because all the footage, the witness accounts, the documents and the damage that still remains did not add up to a case, afterall, these were Iraqi voices and, as we all know, Iraqis don't matter. Saddam, on the other hand, was and continues to be a compelling story.
[Full text of the NYT piece is posted in the comments section]