The steady disintegration of Saddam Hussein's regime has been accompanied by image after image of his defeat, from Republican Guard tanks and armored vehicles ablaze in the streets to American GIs taking five in one of the Indispensable Leader's own obscenely luxurious palaces.
But one discordant image keeps popping up: Saddam's Information Minister Mohammed Saeed al-Sahaf, glaring into the camera and exhorting his boss's backers to hold out because victory is near.
Given that its ability to maintain a presence on the airwaves lends credence to the regime's denials that it's at death's door, one may wonder why our forces don't simply take out Iraqi state TV. In fact they did knock it out at one point, but backup systems quickly brought it back up. Moreover, its main transmission tower stands in an ordinary neighborhood to whose residents our commanders are loathe to bring harm.
But what about al-Sahaf himself? After all, points out the National Review's Jed Babbin, "He is wearing the uniform of Saddam's regime, serving in Saddam's army, and that makes him a legitimate target."
Perhaps. But given the mockery events keep making of his assertions, our pyschological operations people may well have concluded that al-Sahaf is more of a liability than an asset to his masters. Indeed, his statements offer the comic relief to this war. Check out these howlers:
• Americans are now in disarray!
|— Al-Jazeera via CNN, March 27
• They're not even [within] 100 miles! They are not in any place! They hold no place in Iraq! This is an illusion. . . .
|— CNN, April 3
• It will be difficult for the U.S. forces that are surrounded in Saddam airport to come out alive!
|— Reuters, April 4
• The soldiers of Saddam Hussein have given them a lesson they will never forget!
|— CNN, April 6
• Their infidels are committing suicide in their hundreds under the walls of Baghdad!
|— Al-Jazeera via BBC, April 7
• There is no presence of American infidels in the city of Baghdad at all!
|— Fox News, April 7
The regime Mohammed Saeed al-Sahaf serves may not be long for this world, but he himself may have a great future — in stand-up.