March 16, 2004


Iraq-bound jihadologists didnít get the welcome they were expecting:

Ahmed Abdel Razzaq went to Iraq to fight the Americans and die a martyr. He ended up in a U.S. prison camp after the Iraqis he went to defend captured and sold him for $100.

"I went to be a martyr in God's name," said Razzaq, from poor north Lebanon, where Sunni Muslim militancy runs deep.

"I went to jihad (holy war) for the Iraqis but they are all traitors; the people, the army, the Kurds. They say Saddam was bad, but the Iraqis deserve 10 Saddams."

Motivated by religious zeal or Arab nationalism, busloads of Arab volunteers crossed Syria to go to Iraq before and during the war.

Those who got home alive describe being abandoned by Iraqi minders as U.S. forces reached Baghdad, or escaping Iraqis hostile to interference as the Baath government crumbled into chaos.

John Pilger would approve. No meddling in Iraq! Let the Iraqis decide!

UPDATE. Only one year after liberation, things are looking up:

An opinion poll suggests most Iraqis feel their lives have improved since the war in Iraq began about a year ago.

The survey, carried out for the BBC and other broadcasters, also suggests many are optimistic about the next 12 months and opposed to violence.

Posted by Tim Blair at March 16, 2004 05:52 PM

Heh... at least I got to go to the Trenton Planetarium in Jersey and Shakespeare in Connecticut!

THAT'S why they hate us!! We have better fuckin' BUS TRIPS!!

Posted by: geezer at March 16, 2004 at 06:40 PM

$100 a terrorist is about $1.33 a kg; pig carcasses fetch more.

Posted by: Motley at March 16, 2004 at 06:54 PM

Perhaps poor Razzaq was heartened by the western media's hilarious declaration of quagmire a week into the war; or he heard Amb. Joe Wilson (he of the fatuous non-scandal based on journalists' inability to read speech transcripts) tell a US TV audience that he wasn't sure if Iraqis in the south hated the regime or the invading Americans more (the 6 people on Earth including Wilson in doubt about this question had it answered soon enough). Razzaq's fate indicates poor pre-war planning by idiot jihadis. Geez, they were probably told by their recruiters that they'd be greeted as liberators .....

Posted by: IceCold at March 16, 2004 at 06:57 PM

I saw Razzaq on the History Channel tonite, and he looked pretty doggone happy to me...

Or was that Animal Planet?

Ah, nuts.

Posted by: geezer at March 16, 2004 at 07:17 PM

""I went to be a martyr in God's name," said Razzaq"

Why don't we make him one and call it a day? It's a win-win.

Posted by: mj at March 16, 2004 at 11:12 PM

i was shocked when the bride showed me that poll on the bbc site last night, but probably not as shocked as the bbc pollers...

Posted by: Mr. Bingley at March 16, 2004 at 11:47 PM

Note how the author accepts that he went there to defend the Iraqis. No scare quotes there....

Posted by: JPS at March 17, 2004 at 03:51 AM

You know, the funny thing is, is that it seems the only country where people overwhelming support the war is now Iraq.

Posted by: Quentin George at March 17, 2004 at 06:30 AM

Watching BBC World presenters reporting this poll is hilarious. Their expressions of incredulity are a picture. Try as they might, the BBC script writers have not been able to find a way of putting an anti-Coalition spin on this.

'Demand a BROADER view'!!!

Posted by: Richard at March 17, 2004 at 06:45 AM

Hell... as $US 100 each, what every Iraqi really deserves is ten jihadist scumbags like Razzaq. And if you thought the BBC reports were hilarious, go take a look at Al-Jazeera's spin. Hilariously awful...

Posted by: Craig Ranapia (Other Pundit) at March 17, 2004 at 08:17 AM

Things are improving in Iraq on the political side, given the destruction of the fascist dictatorship. Bush deserves credit for the increase in freedom and decency in Iraq.

But a significant measure of the improved social condition of Iraqis results from the lifting of anti-WMD economic sanctions.

It has now been proved beyond reasonable doubt that these sanctions were wrongfully imposed by the UN. I predicted this fact on my blog before the war. My world model with respect to WMDs is therefore correct.

The US was responsible for pressuring the UN to impose these economic sanctions, based on faulty or politically manipulated, information. hence it does not deserve much credit for lifting them. (Although Hussein should have done more to allay the suspiscions of UN WMD inspectors)

The aforementioned statements are all factual and can be verified by independent observation. Anyone who disagrees with these statements is ignorant, idiotic or a liar. Be warned: if I am challenged on this point, I will resond with maximum intellectual force.

Posted by: Jack Strocchi at March 17, 2004 at 11:18 AM

"Hussein should have done more to allay the suspicions of the UN WMD inspectors."

Hussein should have done everything to allay those suspicions, if he wanted to remain in power. Agreement to do that was a condition that allowed him to keep his ass on his throne. I am eternally ashamed that the US, through a stupid excess of respect for multilateralism, did not go into Baghdad and pry that scumbag out of his hole and stand him against a wall in 1991.

The fact that we had the 12 year argument about nukes, biological, and chemical weapons is due to leaving him in power then. We had to do it all over again in 2003 because we did not finish the job the first time, and had to do it in less faavorable circumstances than 1991. That just goes to prove Douglas MacArthur's comment was correct, in war there is no substitute for victory. Now because we did not win a victory in Korea fifty years ago we face the problem of the lunatic Kin Jong Il threatening nuclear war.

Saddam once had chemical weapons, he used them on Kurds. He had programs to develop nuclear and biological weapons. Now he will never become a Middle Eastern Kim Jong Il with oil revenues to feed his nuclear habit, and that is a Good Thing, exclusively due to the Iraq Campaign completed a year ago.

Go be pompous somewhere else.

Posted by: Michael Lonie at March 17, 2004 at 12:46 PM

Michael Lonie disses me for being right:

Go be pompous somewhere else

Dont tell me where to be pompous. The WWW gives me the right to be pompous, self-righteous asshole anywhere in the world.
I choose to exercise that right here.
Regarding the "substance" of your point, your argument for regime change rests on identifying potential with actual WMDs.
Tat kind of talk is metaphysical bs. Deal with the real world.
The fact that you did not predict the no-WMD state of Iraq is an existence proof that you are were ignorant.
The fact that you continue to bleat about it indicates that you are an idiot.

Posted by: Jack Strocchi at March 17, 2004 at 02:27 PM

Actually, Jack, you have no right to be a pompous, self-righteous asshole or anything else here. This is not your blog, and the "WWW" (Wankers' Willies Wave?) doesn't give you shit. Go back to your own blog -- you do have one, or one you can post to, I believe -- and pomp and ass away there. As for you being allowed to post a comment, go ahead, I have not banned you -- but any more macho blusterings and threats will be miraculously transformed into poems about unicorns and how much you want to give Justin Timberlake a blow job while wearing your grandma's wedding dress.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at March 17, 2004 at 03:14 PM

Look, Dad, here's a guy selling a Razzaq.
Yeah? How much is he askin'?
A hundred bucks.
A hundred bucks? - He's dreaming.

Sorry if this comment is a few years late, but it takes a while for your movies to get to Canada.

Posted by: cowboy bob at March 17, 2004 at 03:15 PM

Jack is unstoppable, fear his maximum intellectual force! Yesterday he proved the sanctions were in error due to a lack of WMD in Iraq... join us tomorrow as he disproves gravity by demonstrating how objects fall to the ground when dropped!

Posted by: Sortelli at March 17, 2004 at 03:50 PM

Don't you love Jack's method of debating intelligently?

I know all! Disagree and you are nothing! Your intellect is puny! Mine is massive!


Posted by: Quentin George at March 17, 2004 at 03:55 PM

The horse could not have possibly escaped the barn, because the barn doors are open!

Anyone who disagrees with this logic is a fool!!!!

Posted by: Sortelli at March 17, 2004 at 05:31 PM