Saddam’s Snuff Film
Okay, I’ve finally gathered my thoughts about this whole turn for the worst which has happened with Iraq. As soon as I found out they were going to execute Saddam, I just thought “Oh fuck, that is a REALLY bad idea.” My other friends concurred, it was really just like watching a car crash in slow motion. Don’t do it, don’t do it, aw fuck, you went and did it! Even my tattoo artist and I talked about what a bad idea it was. I forget where I read it, but someone even said George W. Bush was so incompetent he ended up making Saddam look sympathetic.
Now up here in Canada we’re just looking around at each other blinking and sighing and agreeing that the next year in Iraq is going to make the last four put together look like a cake walk. Not only that but now Bush is instigating a troop surge, which was what happened in Viet Nam to kick off the most massive American death toll and ended up with them losing the war anyway.
Because really, that war is so unwinnable. (Unwinnable isn’t a real word but I’ll use it anyway). Once the fighters change from soldiers to civilians it’s pretty much over.
And besides that, this whole thing smacks very much of the pot calling the kettle black. American and UN sanctions against Iraq killed more Iraqis than Saddam ever did, and adding the death toll from the current war seals the deal. Of course a number of Iraqi’s have turned Saddam into a martyr, a hero. He held their country together even when 5000 kids died a month from malnutrition and lack of medicine.
Ever since he came out of that hole and through all the indignities and violations of the Geneva code he was put through by the Americans, he was fuckin’ dignified. I wouldn’t believe it either, but woah, he handled himself really well, he was securing his role as a martyr even as his captors jeered at him. I think he knew he was going to die, any time a judge felt sympathies towards his case they got fired. It was a pretend trial and had nothing to do with an international court of justice.
As soon as I found out they were executing Saddam in a matter of hours, I looked up the Eid holiday. Eid is the celebration after Ramadan, a time for thankfulness, forgiveness, happiness, a lot like Christmas, but without the Christ. It’s a really important holiday to Muslim people and hanging him at the beginning of it was a clear Fuck You to Islam. Shiites were celebrating, but the rest of Iraq was appalled. And now Saddam’s not just a martyr to Iraqis, he’s a martyr to Arabs in a lot of other Middle Eastern countries.
Having his execution posted on YouTube and other assorted online sites was just, oh man, ANOTHER really bad idea. That pushed it over the edge for people. Political snuff films are still snuff films. Even the footage of the twin towers was a snuff film. And the way he died, the floor dropping while he was in mid prayer, that was really affecting stuff. It was like the end of Dancer in the Dark, only it wasn’t Bjork, and Catherine DeNeuve didn’t have a cell phone.
If we had a better, more human Prime Minister who actually reflected the feelings of his people, Canada would be vociferously condemning the execution. I haven’t talked to a single Canadian yet who thinks it was okay.
It’s sad, because 9/11 was the most amazing opportunity for America and the rest of the world to sort out why bad feelings are directed at the US. Internationally people were shocked and saddened as much as Americans, but also with this feeling of “Well, yeah, we do hate you, and we have a lot of reasons.” We sympathized. We understood. America could have completely changed it’s foreign policy, things could have been really amazing, and a lot of nation to nation hostilities could have ended.
But you know, America as we know it was founded on genocide and has stuck to those guiding principles for most of it’s existence.
Canada is also founded on genocide. A lot of countries are. Canada still blatantly practices genocide towards it’s First Nations people, and we still have armed skirmishes, although I’m not sure that comes out in the news often.
Either way, mostly I feel like I’m just watching this fucked up bloody gory horror film that may never end. I know the new spin is that the Iraqi government made the decision to hang him, but all of that process was controlled by the American government and everyone knew it.
Bleh, I feel like writing about something else now. The tattoos are getting all flaky and scaly now, I don’t much like this short phase. I feel itchy and sore and I can’t do anything about it.