January 16, 2004

SMILE

Take a look -- eight seemingly-genuine images of Saddam Husseinís capture. Not previously published.

(Via Brussels Blog and reader John S.)

Posted by Tim Blair at January 16, 2004 02:22 AM
Comments

Wow .... good postcard material.

"To Iran: Chill Out ...

From: The US Militay"

Posted by: JJJ at January 16, 2004 at 03:48 AM

"of" is just a cropped version of "Saddam."
Blair lied!
People were an eigth photo denied!

Posted by: Joe Geoghegan at January 16, 2004 at 04:05 AM

Love that Brawny product placement in jpg 08. Oh and the 409!

Posted by: Lori at January 16, 2004 at 04:20 AM

Why is he playing playstation in that crappy dorm room?

Posted by: Bill at January 16, 2004 at 04:23 AM

From photo #8, it looks like Saddam has joined "The Frightened Family." (That won't mean anything to 99% of your readers, but there's probably one or two Americans who'll remember "The New Show.")

Also, today I am trying to get people thinking seriously about the possibility that Molly Ivins has an unrequited crush on George W. Bush. Please forgive the non sequitur.

Posted by: Guy T. at January 16, 2004 at 04:39 AM

I've seen these somewhere before, just the other day. But they were much smaller.

In particular, I remember seeing the pink box behind Saddam in photo #8, and wondering if it was a box of C&H sugar. It seems to be labelled "Tikrit". Huh?

This leads inexorably to just one question: What, no non-dairy creamer? Is that a violation of the Geneva Conventions?

Posted by: Angie Schultz at January 16, 2004 at 04:47 AM

Gephart will clearly be next to go. After he fails to win/place/show in Iowa, there's nowhere else for him to go but out.

Posted by: Rv. Agnos at January 16, 2004 at 05:09 AM

I must point out that I am undergoing sympathetic humiliation after viewing these photos.

Saddam looks like I do after I've been working at home for several days.

Posted by: Steve in Houston at January 16, 2004 at 05:18 AM

Shouldn't there be a Grateful Dead poster in that last photo somewhere?

Posted by: scott h. at January 16, 2004 at 05:18 AM

I especially like the one where he is marched in front of a room full of Cheering GI's.. This may sound awfully PC and sappy of me, but I can't help but feel proud about the great diversity in race amongst folks in that room.. Our soldiers reflect what America is and what the world(UN) should be. united..

Posted by: Arvin at January 16, 2004 at 05:23 AM

I hope they've made Saddam sit through a showing of South Park: Bigger, Longer, & Uncut.

"Eeeeeyyy, Satan!"

Posted by: Brian Tiemann at January 16, 2004 at 05:37 AM

I made my weekly trek over to DU, for a laugh and to see what they had on these.

They're pretty outraged.

But they are busy looking for Kurds in the photos, 'cause G-d knows, accoring to DU, no Aussie, Brit, or Yank could EVER be smart enough to capture Saddam.

Posted by: Rick The Lawyer at January 16, 2004 at 05:39 AM

We should have a photoshop contest with these.

Posted by: Tim Shell at January 16, 2004 at 05:40 AM

These pictures make me queasy. I know Saddam is an evil dictator and has murdered hundreds of thousands but I don't take comfort in snapshots of soldiers pinning him down like a trophy. He is all the terrible things that everybody has said but the issue is the behaviour of our troops. It strikes me as bad taste.

And it concerns me that our soldiers are taking candid shots and distributing them over the net. There is all kinds of opportunities for terrible results.

Posted by: bbridges at January 16, 2004 at 06:42 AM

And to think that Tony Blair and John Howard both said that if he disarmed he could stay in power.

What were they thinking?

Posted by: bongoman at January 16, 2004 at 07:20 AM

Shouldn't there be a Grateful Dead poster in that last photo somewhere?

Or a box of Baby Wipes!?

Posted by: x at January 16, 2004 at 07:26 AM

1) bbridges should remove his/her head from their arse.

2) Tim, you fool, it's a *plastic* Saddam!

3)The one with the GI pinning Saddam down would have to be the coolest hunting photo in history.

Posted by: Jake D at January 16, 2004 at 07:37 AM

I like picture #2.

''Send Lawyers, Guns, and Money''

But they may have shot the lawyers already. They pointed a brief at a recon patrol, and were gunned down. Lawyers without Borders is expected to condemn the incident.

Posted by: Jim at January 16, 2004 at 07:40 AM

Jim,

In the US we don't have Arses. We have Asses. As in the phrase "Kiss my ass."

Thank you very much.

Posted by: bbridges at January 16, 2004 at 07:53 AM

The photo of cash box:
one soldier to the other: darn, that photographer.

Posted by: d at January 16, 2004 at 07:58 AM

I think even Saddam seems to be smiling in one of them.

Posted by: Amos at January 16, 2004 at 08:15 AM

bbridges,

how do you distinguish between an ass (donkey) and an arse (backside)?
Pedantically yours, TimT

Posted by: TimT at January 16, 2004 at 08:16 AM

This may sound awfully PC and sappy of me, but I can't help but feel proud about the great diversity in race amongst folks in that room

Actually, I'd always wished that the crew that nabbed that sonofabitch had at least one American Arab who could tell the bastard precisely who was knocking at the door and exactly how small a POS he was, hiding in his septic tank...

And chances are, that's exactly what happened.

-Vic

Posted by: Vic at January 16, 2004 at 08:35 AM

``how do you distinguish between an ass (donkey) and an arse (backside)?''

Context.

And much as I love to see our guys in photos, I wish they'd digitized the faces so they couldn't be recognized. Even ``Soldier of Fortune'' does that. I'd hate for some sand louse to recognize any of them and decide he's going to avenge Dear Leader personally.

Posted by: Annalucia at January 16, 2004 at 08:37 AM

Oops, Jim, my comment was supposed to be in response to Jake.

TimT,

I read somewhere that the difference between "arse" and "ass" is the difference between Rugby and American Football.

But I find "ass" to be a bit more vulgar and thus more american. "Arse" to American ears sounds a little formal. It seems the impact would be lost if I shouted "Kiss my Arse!" to somebody over here. And if you threatened to kick somebody's arse, you'd probably be laughed out of the bar.

Posted by: bbridges at January 16, 2004 at 08:46 AM

love the zippy tie on his wrists in pic eight. you can do heaps of good stuff with those things.

Posted by: roscoe. at January 16, 2004 at 08:56 AM

Solider second from the right: CRAZY EYES. next contestant for The Bachelor, i reckon.

Posted by: Atari at January 16, 2004 at 09:18 AM

Hey Jim,
In Tim Blair's Australia we kick people up the ARSE.

We don't kick ASS cause thats cruel to animals ...

Posted by: Arik at January 16, 2004 at 09:28 AM

Snopes lists the authenticity of these photos as 'undetermined'.

http://www.snopes.com/photos/military/saddam.asp

..still nothing on snopes about the plastic turkey.

Posted by: Pig head Sucker at January 16, 2004 at 10:12 AM

Guy holding down Saddam's head is a good-looking dude. He can push my head down any day.

Posted by: freddyboy at January 16, 2004 at 10:27 AM

I second that, freddyboy. Plus, he's a soldier which ramps the hotness factor up a few notches.

Posted by: goldsmith at January 16, 2004 at 10:33 AM

Let's just agree that bbridges is an ass's backside and should be kicked accordingly.

Posted by: maxi at January 16, 2004 at 10:57 AM

bbridges makes me think of something my father used to say: "Why are there so many more horse's asses than there are horses?" (That would be using the "ass=arse" definition of the word.)

Posted by: Andrea Harris at January 16, 2004 at 11:00 AM

Boy this is quite the catty crowd. I've been commenting here for a while but I dare to disagree and suddenly this response? You guys don't believe in debating?

Or do you really believe that it is good policy to allow personal photos from such operations to be freely traded across the internet? Frankly I'm surprised they are allowed to carry personal cameras.

Posted by: bbridges at January 16, 2004 at 11:30 AM

We don't care about your discomfort, bb. In case you haven't figured that out yet. Anyway, if you can't take the heat in here, I am sure you can find yourself a nice cool place somewhere else.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at January 16, 2004 at 12:01 PM

Glad you are speaking for everybody Andrea. Is this what is called groupthink?

My comfort level isn't the issue. Do you not dare to think about this issue?

So be it.

Posted by: bbridges at January 16, 2004 at 12:16 PM

What issue, exactly, bbridges? Soldiers have been taking pictures during wars for as long as there've been cameras. The capture was weeks ago, and these 8 photos don't show anything "secret". Soldiers aren't little kids, and if we trust them with guns and tanks and rebuilding countries then I think we can trust them with cameras, Internet connections, and the discretion to handle the pics.

Posted by: Bryan Costin at January 16, 2004 at 12:55 PM

Oops...it looks like the sensitivity police at Stony Brook - State University of NY learned of the photos. They have been pulled. I hope y'all dl'ed copies!

Posted by: Kenny Biel at January 16, 2004 at 01:06 PM

Freddyboy:
"Guy holding down Saddam's head is a good-looking dude. He can push my head down any day."

Just on horses and asses and stuff:

Er, Freddyboy, in the nicest possible way, in Australia you may be what we call a horses hoof. Its ryhming slang...

Posted by: Arik at January 16, 2004 at 01:33 PM

Um, I'm a poofter too, Arik. Is there some sort of problem with that?

Posted by: goldsmith at January 16, 2004 at 01:58 PM

"Glad you are speaking for everybody Andrea."

Well, since no one has come to your defense, I guess I do. As for your "issue" -- we can read your original post, where you groused about how icky it was that the soldiers had cameras for... some reason. Because it made you feel all icky. Of course, I paraphrase. But I am wondering why you are so worried about soldiers with cameras. Frankly, I just don't get it; I'd be a little more worried about a soldier's gun.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at January 16, 2004 at 02:02 PM

Goldsmith,
No problemo for me. Aussie slang has more words to describe gays than most others - don't forget it started out as a male-only convict colony ...

Just ask and the Aussies here can flood you with slang synonyms, starting with shirt-lifter and moving on to ...

Posted by: Arik at January 16, 2004 at 02:17 PM

GOLDSMITH !

GOD IS WATCHING YOU ! THE GOOD BOOK SAYS "DO NOT SPILL YOUR SEED IN THE DESSERT" - er, desert, ahh ..

ANYWAY KEEP YOUR DICK OUT OF THE MOUSSE !

AND STAY KOSHER - messhugganuh

Posted by: MOSES at January 16, 2004 at 02:24 PM

Andrea,

I really don't understand your misrepresentation of what I said. Especially since what I said is clearly available just inches above your post. I've enjoyed (and participated in) quite a few well deserved communal rants about such things by Maureen Dowd etc. and when you misrepresent the meaning, that isn't paraphrasing.

Moving on though...surely you can see the opportunity for security, intelligence and/or public relations debacles that can come out of soldiers with cameras, clicking away and posting without any oversight.

As to the weapon. Well, they are trained extensively in how to use their weapon. They receive no training in how to use their instamatic.

Posted by: bbridges at January 16, 2004 at 02:35 PM

No worries, Arik. I'm just always on guard, having on a few occasions been surprised when I get some anti-gay flak from people I agree with on other issues, like the war and such.

I have an Aussie friend, so believe me, I've heard many of the "expressive" terms for my kind :-)

Moses: Please don't smite me!

Posted by: goldsmith at January 16, 2004 at 02:58 PM

BB, GET FUCKED. Is that clear enough for you? No international english misunderstanding I hope?

Your orginal post:

"These pictures make me queasy. I know Saddam is an evil dictator and has murdered hundreds of thousands but I don't take comfort in snapshots of soldiers pinning him down like a trophy. He is all the terrible things that everybody has said but the issue is the behaviour of our troops. It strikes me as bad taste. "

Ohhh, you feel all queasy for Saddam being pinned down do you? Like I said, remove your head from your ARSE! Right now I'd bet good Aussie dollars on the fact that in Iraq those photos are probably being turned into posters and being hung proudly. Those soldiers have got a hard shitty job so when they got the break of all breaks and caught that prick of course they should be allowed to take some pride and fun from it.

Andrea, over to you...

Posted by: Jake D at January 16, 2004 at 03:21 PM

Oooh Jake !
Maybe Thaddam was nasty sometimes, but that doefn't mean he was bad perfon!

And I dont think he would use cuss-words to nice people like you juft did - I'm tho croff I could just spfit!

Posted by: LimpLefty at January 16, 2004 at 03:42 PM

i think BB's taking the piss. he is isnt he? i was actually upset that the soldiers didnt put a bullet into the great former leader's insane brain...

Posted by: roscoe. at January 16, 2004 at 04:18 PM

I saw these photos this morning (some 14 hours or so ago). The link provided here no longer seems to work.

Yes, these photos are shocking, shocking and profound. Their significance will likely be long debated here on the blogosphere, as well as in the Pentagon.

I too, think that revealing the faces of US Airborne Special OPs was a mistake, and may have even been a breach of national security. It is now know what Col. Hickey (I believe that was his name), his Staff Sergeant, and many of his men look like.

Yes, revealing to all the capture of this heinous monster is important, even necessary. I cannot recall similar photos of a head of state shown being captured during wartime within the theater of conflict.

But if the transmission of these photos was indeed a security breach, look for Col. Hickey or his CO to be severely reprimanded, possibly even relieved of command, demoted, or worse.

Posted by: MeTooThen at January 16, 2004 at 05:21 PM

Sorry, I tuned in late. Jeeze, Arik, subtlety is wasted on straights like you. And yes, I'm an Aussie, and know the whole lexicon of abuse for gays. I supposed if I'd said I'd like to go down on Saddam's 18-year old girl-friend (the one whose baby was stolen by aliens), you'd have been cheering. Sheesh!

Posted by: Freddyboy at January 16, 2004 at 06:57 PM

Jesus, BB, what a pantywaist you are. In none of those pictures was the fascist murdering dictator rat Hussein being at all mistreated, unless you think the soldiers should all have been bowing and shaking his hand instead of holding him down on the ground just as cops do to any perp they capture. But from what you said, which has even been requoted by Jake D so you don't have to scroll all the way up and reread your own post, you apparently are uncomfortable with this very standard procedure, though you hide your weird fears with some bullshit about how people will think that American soldiers are rude or something.

As for your line "As to the weapon. Well, they are trained extensively in how to use their weapon. They receive no training in how to use their instamatic." What the fuck? And what is the consequence of untrained use of an instant camera going to result in, the deaths of thousands of cute orphans? Do you have some unnatural fear of blurry photos? In any case, whoever used the "instamatic" seemed quite able to focus and point the thing in the right direction.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at January 16, 2004 at 08:30 PM

Andrea, love your style, I truly hope that the person of your choice makes sweet, sweet love to you.

Before *plastic* Timbo removes this post. Damn your plastic mass produced heart Tim you fiend!

Now back to bagging BMW riders on another site....

Posted by: Jake D at January 16, 2004 at 10:33 PM

Jake and Andrea,

You guys just can't help yourselves can you? You are flailing all around my statement without actually understanding what I said.

How about this. Either the photo is a fake or there will be an investigation and somebody will have their ass (or arse) in a sling.

Your passion for these pictures is clear so I hope you did save them before they were removed.

Relax.

Posted by: bbridges at January 17, 2004 at 12:05 AM

Good God, bbridges, where the hell have you been for the last 20 years? Video cameras and regular cameras have been showing us history of all kinds, from Rodney King to...everything.

Hell, going back farther, you'd probably have gone all queasy about that pic of Jack Ruby blowing Lee Harvery Oswald away, not to mention the MacGruder film.

I think it was important for the event of Saddam's capture to be photo'd--see? None of our boys beat him down with their nightsticks...

Posted by: ushie at January 17, 2004 at 02:02 AM

From CNN (sorry I don't know how italicize within the comments)

"A new picture of Col. James Hickey, commander of the 1st Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, who directed the 600 troops who took part in the capture, matches other photos of Hickey.
...

The Pentagon is reportedly not happy the photographs got out.

But it is uncertain anyone will be reprimanded, because almost every soldier carries a pocket camera these days, and that makes it unlikely whoever took the photos will be identified."

Operative word, "uncertain."

Posted by: MeTooThen at January 17, 2004 at 05:58 AM

BB, tell me agin in simple words fir dumb folks like me, what the problem is? I obviously only got the bit where you feel sick that a dictator got caught and was treated in the appropriate manner.

So they took photos - care factor 0.00. The only thing is they should have blurred their faces but other than that I think they're great and Saddam was lucky, very bloody lucky, not to have copped the Mother of All Bashings.

So BB, what is the problem? Or do you still feel too queasy to answer?

Wanker.


Andrea, apologies for the "make sweet, sweet love" comment, was drunk and bad mannered.

Posted by: Jake D at January 17, 2004 at 08:33 AM

Jake D: heh heh.

BBridges: oh, I see -- you were worried that the strange "picture-making devices" would steal the soldiers' souls.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at January 17, 2004 at 11:30 AM

Um, at 4 am EST I remembered it's "Zapruder," I think. Man, I sure wish there was some way for me to look these things up...

Posted by: ushie at January 18, 2004 at 02:11 AM