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While we have your attention, Mr President... (great letter to the Guardian from Frederick Forsyth)
Guardian uk ^ | 11-20-03 | Frederick Forsyth

Posted on 11/20/2003 11:03:26 AM PST by doug from upland

Link to letters: CLICK FOR LETTERS.
==================================================

Today's GUARDIAN in England has letters to the editor. Some will make you want to scream. Some will make you want to throw a brick through a window. Some will make you want to slap a useful idiot upside the head. This one, however, will make you feel good.

Dear Mr President,

Today you arrive in my country for the first state visit by an American president for many decades, and I bid you welcome.

You will find yourself assailed on every hand by some pretty pretentious characters collectively known as the British left. They traditionally believe they have a monopoly on morality and that your recent actions preclude you from the club. You opposed and destroyed the world's most blood-encrusted dictator. This is quite unforgivable.

I beg you to take no notice. The British left intermittently erupts like a pustule upon the buttock of a rather good country. Seventy years ago it opposed mobilisation against Adolf Hitler and worshipped the other genocide, Josef Stalin.

It has marched for Mao, Ho Chi Minh, Khrushchev, Brezhnev and Andropov. It has slobbered over Ceausescu and Mugabe. It has demonstrated against everything and everyone American for a century. Broadly speaking, it hates your country first, mine second.

Eleven years ago something dreadful happened. Maggie was ousted, Ronald retired, the Berlin wall fell and Gorby abolished communism. All the left's idols fell and its demons retired. For a decade there was nothing really to hate. But thank the Lord for his limitless mercy. Now they can applaud Saddam, Bin Laden, Kim Jong-Il... and hate a God-fearing Texan. So hallelujah and have a good time.

Frederick Forsyth
Novelist


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; United Kingdom
KEYWORDS: bush; england; forsyth; letters; ukvisit
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1 posted on 11/20/2003 11:03:29 AM PST by doug from upland
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To: doug from upland
That really is a fine letter, one that made me smile. Thanks for posting.
2 posted on 11/20/2003 11:04:59 AM PST by Coop (God bless our troops!)
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To: doug from upland
Mr. Forsyth is now on my must-read list. Thank you, sir.
3 posted on 11/20/2003 11:06:11 AM PST by 6323cd
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To: 6323cd
Just a few of Mr. Forsyth's "minor" works..LOL:

--The Day of the Jackal
--The Odessa File
--The Dogs of War

4 posted on 11/20/2003 11:15:24 AM PST by Indie ("death was our business....and business was good" -MACVSOG)
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To: doug from upland
The British left intermittently erupts like a pustule upon the buttock of a rather good country.

The American left intermittently erupts like a pustue on the buttock of a rather good country.

Priceless.

The letter deserves a hallowed place somewhere.

5 posted on 11/20/2003 11:18:47 AM PST by Don'tMessWithTexas
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To: Indie
I highly recommend The Fist of God by Mr. Forsyth. Very much an on-topic book indeed. His attention to detail and accuracy makes him my favorite writer.
6 posted on 11/20/2003 11:18:51 AM PST by EscapedDutch (Loquendi Libertatem Custodiamus)
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To: doug from upland
Good read bump
7 posted on 11/20/2003 11:19:05 AM PST by workerbee
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To: Indie
''The Fourth Protocol'' and ''The Devil's Alternative'' are his best, IMNNHO. Whacking good stories. Also, ''The Negotiator'' was enormously entertaining, if rather far-fetched.
8 posted on 11/20/2003 11:19:34 AM PST by SAJ
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To: Indie
I imagine the left will add book burning to their protests now...?
9 posted on 11/20/2003 11:20:33 AM PST by workerbee
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To: doug from upland
Recommended reading: his short story collection, "No Comebacks."

The one story from that collection that really sticks with me is "Money with Menaces."
10 posted on 11/20/2003 11:21:32 AM PST by Poohbah ("Beware the fury of a patient man" -- John Dryden)
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To: EscapedDutch
Fist of God is one of the best novels ever written. His latest, Avenger, was also good. Better than the collection of short stories that he released a few years ago. Day of the Jackal and Devil's Alternative were great. Odessa and Dogs of War were good, but not his best. Still, he's one of the best novelists ever.
11 posted on 11/20/2003 11:21:36 AM PST by Koblenz (There's usually a free market solution)
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To: doug from upland
So has this guy been knighted, or is that reserved exclusively for rock stars??
12 posted on 11/20/2003 11:24:19 AM PST by Spok
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To: doug from upland
Cute letter. Thanks for posting.
13 posted on 11/20/2003 11:24:41 AM PST by Lorianne
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To: Koblenz
I liked Devil's Alternative; it really felt like you were there in a massive crisis.

The Fourth Protocol was very elegantly plotted.

"No Comebacks" has a GREAT short piece titled "Money with Menaces." That story is very rare: a short story with an unstated moral to it.
14 posted on 11/20/2003 11:28:03 AM PST by Poohbah ("Beware the fury of a patient man" -- John Dryden)
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To: doug from upland
Huzzah for Mr. Forsyth, and excepting the buttocks eruption of which he writes, huzzah for the UK!
15 posted on 11/20/2003 11:30:25 AM PST by Chummy
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To: All
Dear President Bush,

I'm sure you'll be having a nice little tea party with your fellow war criminal, Tony Blair. Please wash the cucumber sandwiches down with a glass of blood, with my compliments.

Harold Pinter
Playwright

16 posted on 11/20/2003 11:31:12 AM PST by doug from upland (Why aren't the Clintons living out their remaining years on Alcatraz?)
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To: doug from upland
Frederick Forsyth is not just a novelist. In fact, he's not a good novelist. Frederick Forsyth is and has always been a great novelist.
17 posted on 11/20/2003 11:35:40 AM PST by PeoplesRepublicOfWashington
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To: Indie
Oh my gosh; I read "The Day of the Jackal" when I was 16, and didn't make the connection that he wrote it! My bad!
18 posted on 11/20/2003 11:37:55 AM PST by 6323cd
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To: doug from upland
Dear Mr. Pinter:
You sadly have me confused with those well-known blood drinkers, the Baathist fedayeen, who are of course mostly now dead. With my compliments.

George Bush.
19 posted on 11/20/2003 11:40:08 AM PST by Taliesan
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To: doug from upland
Wonderful! Thanks for posting.

I bet somebody's going to see a surge in the sale of his books (at least a tiny, Freeper-driven one).
20 posted on 11/20/2003 11:44:25 AM PST by livius
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To: doug from upland
Thanks for the chuckle. I always did like Forsyth.
21 posted on 11/20/2003 11:52:22 AM PST by pgkdan
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To: hchutch
Ping.
22 posted on 11/20/2003 11:54:46 AM PST by Poohbah ("Beware the fury of a patient man" -- John Dryden)
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To: doug from upland
Great quote: I beg you to take no notice. The British left intermittently erupts like a pustule upon the buttock of a rather good country.
23 posted on 11/20/2003 11:56:02 AM PST by VRWCmember (We apologise for the fault in the taglines. Those responsible have been sacked.)
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To: doug from upland
Bump
24 posted on 11/20/2003 12:05:21 PM PST by Incorrigible
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To: All
This is a fun one.
=======================

Dear President Bush,

You will be greeted by vast numbers of protesters who think the invasion of Iraq was a crime, and by others who think it was not so much a crime as a mistake - badly planned, and initiated with no idea of what the US was getting into. I wish more of the protesters were there to remind you of your atrocious record as governor of Texas, when you upheld death sentences passed by corrupt and biased courts on illiterate, incompetent and all-toofrequently innocent defendants. Many of the protesters think you are a mass murderer; you certainly have form as a serial killer.

Alan Ryan
Warden of New College, Oxford

25 posted on 11/20/2003 12:09:52 PM PST by doug from upland (Why aren't the Clintons living out their remaining years on Alcatraz?)
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To: doug from upland
A big TTT for great letter
thanks
26 posted on 11/20/2003 12:20:42 PM PST by ralph rotten
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To: doug from upland
Is New College a prison? Why do they have a Warden?

That aside, the good Warden should learn himself a bit of Texas law. The Governor has absolutely no authority over death sentences other than imposing, one time, a 30 day reprieve.

But, then, I doubt that the Warden is one of those who would be worried about facts.
27 posted on 11/20/2003 12:20:42 PM PST by jackbill
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To: All
alan.ryan@new.ox.ac.uk
My response to the clown at Oxford ---

Sir:

In your letter in the GUARDIAN directed toward my president, you said:

" I wish more of the protesters were there to remind you of your atrocious record as governor of Texas, when you upheld death sentences passed by corrupt and biased courts on illiterate, incompetent and all-toofrequently innocent defendants. Many of the protesters think you are a mass murderer; you certainly have form as a serial killer."

Apparently, you have information that we do not. Will you please provide the names of the all-too frequently innocent defendants whom Governor Bush had put to death? If you cannot provide the names, will you have the decency to issue an apology? If you won't do that, will you at least have the sense to destroy your computer and keyboard so you can no longer compose such garbage for others to read?

I am waiting. Please surprise me.

28 posted on 11/20/2003 12:22:40 PM PST by doug from upland (Why aren't the Clintons living out their remaining years on Alcatraz?)
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To: doug from upland
I have always enjoyed Frederick Forsyth's novels. And now this!
29 posted on 11/20/2003 12:24:11 PM PST by Rummyfan
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To: ralph rotten
The Forsyth letter , the Forsyth letter!!!
30 posted on 11/20/2003 12:25:52 PM PST by ralph rotten
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To: doug from upland
That is a classic! I love the Brits who get it.
31 posted on 11/20/2003 12:34:22 PM PST by ReleaseTheHounds
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To: doug from upland
He wrote Dogs of War? That's one of my favorite movies. Check out the pictures of the protesters on the front page of Drudge. There is one I'd like put over me knee and teach her some respect. If it wasn't for us, these clowns would be goose stepping right now.
32 posted on 11/20/2003 1:01:21 PM PST by Historicus
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To: All
My goodness, I heard from Alan Ryan at Oxford a short time ago ---

Dear Mr (redacted),

As you no doubt know, one of the interesting features of the Texan criminal justice system is the unwillingness of the attorney general's office to reopen cases where there is a real question of the guilt of the accused and subsequently executed. Since the state of Illinois is almost certainly more rather than less scrupulous in its treatment of defendants, and it racked up something like a ten percent mis-conviction rate upon investigation, I tend to assume that some 15 of the people executed during Bush's governorship were innocent of the crime for which they were executed.

This is, of course, only indirect evidence, but I would be more willing to agree that I was wrong if the state was eager to investigate every single case where a plausible doubt had been raised. I ought, perhaps, to add that I do not in the least wish to say that the people executed were useful citizens, redeemable, or innocent of absolutely everything they were charged with - only that they were often executed when their guilt in the particular matter was in doubt, when extenuating circumstances were not taken into account, when all those things that someone less morally obtuse than your president would have at least thought about, were taken into account.

And may I congratulate you on the measured and temperate way in which you respond to criticism?

best wishes

Alan Ryan

======================
Alan Ryan
New College, Oxford
Tel: 01865-279501
PA: 01865-279515
Fax: 01865-724047

================================================

MY RESPONSE BACK TO HIM ---

I appreciate your quick response! I am disappointed, however, that you didn't have the names to support the assertion. As a supporter of the death penalty, I would be very angry if innocent people in Texas were put to death by a man I admire.

Intellectual honesty and moral clarity, it seems to me, would require that a reference as "serial killer" necessitates at least some proof rather than "I tend to assume." Assuming doesn't quite make the case as "serial killer."

In Bill Clinton's visits to England, I never read any letters to the editor about the death penalty relative to Ricky Ray Rector. Did you ever write such a letter? From a Google search:

RICKY RAY RECTOR
Executed by State of Arkansas on January 24, 1992

Ricky Ray Rector was retarded due to lobotomy. His IQ is unknown, but his retardation must have been profound, as before being executed, he saved his last dessert "for after". Governor Bill Clinton, who was running for Presidency, did fly back to Arkansas to be sure his execution would be carried out.

I have enjoyed our exchange. By the way, perhaps you would do me a favor.

I am doing research on the reason for Bill Clinton's departure from Oxford those many years ago. According to a writer who spoke with a former State Department employee, Clinton was asked to leave Oxford and the country because of an alleged sexual assualt on a young woman he met in a pub named Eileen Wellstone. Apparently, Wellstone's parents did not press for criminal charges and a Rhodes Scholar was simply sent home. I am not going to assume guilt here, and I would like the real story. Are you able to shed light on it?

Thank you for your help. Here is to a safer world, even if we disagree how we arrive there.

33 posted on 11/20/2003 1:10:55 PM PST by doug from upland (Why aren't the Clintons living out their remaining years on Alcatraz?)
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To: doug from upland
I believe Harold Pinter has an almost limitless supply of blood, most of it oozing from his own (no doubt, high-mileage) anus.

Mark Steyn: It's 'peace' psychosis in a nut's hell

In this paper before the war, Mr Pinter assured us that millions of Iraqi children's rectums were chronically leaking blood - something to do with depleted uranium from the Yanks. In every medical facility I visited in western and northern Iraq, I inquired about this phenomenon and found no one who knew of a single sufferer.

34 posted on 11/20/2003 2:39:11 PM PST by Flashman_at_the_charge
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To: doug from upland
The majority of the English still loves America and honest people like our President GWB. But the increasing muslim population is a grave concern, not only in GB but here at home. The idea of liberty and Freedom are not compatible with the teaching of islam. For example, the freedom to choose one's religious affiliation is not acceptable in most, if not all islamic countries.
35 posted on 11/20/2003 2:56:33 PM PST by desertcry
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To: doug from upland
Harold Pinter
Pustule
36 posted on 11/20/2003 3:03:38 PM PST by desertcry
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To: desertcry
BTTT
37 posted on 11/21/2003 6:09:04 AM PST by Coop (God bless our troops!)
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To: doug from upland
ping
38 posted on 11/21/2003 7:12:19 AM PST by Blessed
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To: doug from upland
I always liked, "A Season In Hell", it was like the conversion of a liberal. Nice letter by the way.
39 posted on 11/21/2003 12:20:24 PM PST by TEXASPROUD
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To: doug from upland
Bump for DFU's patience in dealing with the "pustule". :)
40 posted on 11/21/2003 12:39:03 PM PST by Grit (Visit - http://www.NRSC.org - Help get 60 Senators in 2004)
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To: Grit
Here is a good one from the link above...

Dear George,

I would just like to say how much I hate you. You have done nothing positive in your whole time as president. You are the reason for the poverty in the Middle East. You have no idea what you are doing. You're killing loads of people, and that is not excluding your own nation too. There are still lots of very poor people in America, and they are getting poorer.

You keep making excuses about Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden, but all you were in Iraq for was the oil. Saddam had been there for 30 years, so why is it only now you decided to act? You keep talking about September 11 when all you do is bomb other countries and give Israel lots of money. It is a very bad idea that you have come over here.

I don't want to grow up in a country which is so influenced by you and your policies.

Mickey (12)

Ladies and Gents, the children are our future.

41 posted on 11/21/2003 12:54:53 PM PST by Grit (Visit - http://www.NRSC.org - Help get 60 Senators in 2004)
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To: Grit
Mickey is stupid beyond his years. It is a shame that 12 years and 9 months ago his mommy didn't Lewinsky dad instead of what they did.
42 posted on 11/21/2003 1:26:54 PM PST by doug from upland (Why aren't the Clintons living out their remaining years on Alcatraz?)
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To: dead; Lurking Libertarian; Dataman; RightOnline; FairOpinion; Tamsey; EggsAckley; PhiKapMom; ...
How can you not love this?

Dan
43 posted on 11/21/2003 1:33:34 PM PST by BibChr ("...behold, they have rejected the word of the LORD, so what wisdom is in them?" [Jer. 8:9])
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To: doug from upland
Thank You, Doug. Forsyth puts it all in sharp perspective. What he says goes for the elitist American Left as well.
44 posted on 11/21/2003 1:40:35 PM PST by Bernard Marx
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To: doug from upland
Wow. That has got to be the best ed letter I've ever read!

Loved Dogs of War and The Odessa File.

45 posted on 11/21/2003 1:46:48 PM PST by Mr. Silverback (Pre-empt the third murder attempt-- Pray for Terry Schiavo!)
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To: Grit
Dear Mickey,

Thanks for your letter concerning how much you hate George W. Bush. I think it was a really brave thing to do. I'd like to invite you to America to see what a hell-hole he has made of this country. I'd be happy to put you up while you're here, for free. Don't bother bringing a swimsuit. See you soon.

your good friend,
Michael Jackson

46 posted on 11/21/2003 1:46:58 PM PST by Billthedrill
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To: Poohbah
The one story from that collection ["No Comebacks"] that really sticks with me is "Money with Menaces."

For me it's: "There Are No Snakes in Ireland."

47 posted on 11/21/2003 1:50:41 PM PST by Bernard Marx
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To: doug from upland
Bump for later
48 posted on 11/21/2003 1:53:27 PM PST by The Coopster
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To: BibChr
Our own left also resembles a pustule.....
49 posted on 11/21/2003 7:54:52 PM PST by Dataman
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To: All
Salam Pax Dear George,

I hate to wake you up from that dream you are having, the one in which you are a superhero bringing democracy and freedom to underdeveloped, oppressed countries. But you really need to check things out in one of the countries you have recently bombed to freedom. Georgie, I am kind of worried that things are going a bit bad in Iraq and you don't seem to care that much. You might want it to appear as if things are going well and sign Iraq off as a job well done, but I am afraid this is not the case.

Listen, habibi, it is not over yet. Let me explain this in simple terms. "You have spilled a glass full of tomato juice on an already dirty carpet and now you have to clean up the whole room". Not all of the mess is your fault but you volunteered to clean it up. I bet if someone had explained it to you like that you would have been less hasty going on our Rambo-in-Baghdad trip.

To tell you the truth, I am glad that someone is doing the cleaning up, and thank you for getting rid of that scary guy with the hideous moustache that we had for president. But I have to say that the advertisements you were dropping from your B52s before the bombs fell promised a much more efficient and speedy service. We are a bit disappointed. So would you please, pretty please, with sugar on top, get your act together and stop telling people you have Iraq all figured out when you are giving us the trial-and-error approach?

Anyway, I hope this doesn't disturb you too much. Have a nice stay in London, wave hello to the demonstrators, and give my regards to your spin doctors. I bet they are having a hell of a job making you look good.
Regards,
Salam Pax
The Baghdad Blogger
____________________________________________________________LILEKS responds, Hey, Salam? I know you’re the famous giggly blogger who gave us all a riveting view of the inner circle before the war, and thus know more about the situation than I do. Granted. But there’s a picture on the front page of my local paper today: third Minnesotan killed in Iraq. He died doing what you never had the stones to do: pick up a rifle and face the Ba’athists. You owe him.

Let me explain this in simple terms, habibi. You would have spent the rest of your life under Ba’athist rule. You might have gotten some nice architectural commissions to do a house for someone whose aroma was temporarily acceptable to the Tikriti mob. You might have worked your international connections, made it back to Vienna, lived a comfy exile’s life. What’s certain is that none of your pals would ever have gotten rid of that “scary guy with the hideous moustache” (as if his greatest sin was somehow a fashion faux pas) and the Saddam regime would have prospered into the next generation precisely because of people like you. People who would rather have lived their life in low-level fear than change your situation. I understand; I would have done the same. I’m not brave enough to start a revolution. I wouldn’t have grabbed a gun and charged a palace. I would lived like you. Head down, eyes wary. When the man’s too strong, the man’s too strong. But let me quote from a Guardian story on your life:

“Like all Iraqis, Salam was familiar with the dangers. At least four of his relatives had gone missing. In the past year, for no apparent reason, one of his friends was summarily executed, shot in the head as he sat in his car, and two others were arrested; one was later freed and another, a close friend, has never returned.”

The rug was soaked before we got there, friend. Cut the clever café pose; drop the sneer. That “Rambo” crap is old. Iraq needs grown-ups. Be one.
____________________________________________________________What kind of person is Salam Pax? He's a Baathist, or at least the son of a Baathist. In another of those many pieces I've written over the past year that hardly anyone read, I said as much and more. Salam Pax, everybody's golden boy before and during the war, had deep connections to the Saddamites. His daddy's one of 'em:

His Baathist connection is through his grandfather, a tribal chief, and therefore through his father and uncle, both of who seem to have had some weight in the old regime. His uncle is a banker of some authority in Baghdad, possibly a Baathist financier. His father's career led to opportunities outside Iraq, rare enough in a dictatorship, and to Salam's trilingual education in Vienna (in addition to Arabic and English, Salam speaks German). The Vienna route suggests but doesn't necessarily demand a connection to the Iraqi oil industry — Vienna is OPEC's headquarters. It's just as likely that Salam's father was an oilman as he was just an Iraqi bureaucrat either attending OPEC meetings or keeping tabs on Iraq's representatives. Salam once maintained his own flat in Vienna, suggesting a freedom to travel that has long been rare in Iraq.
****Since Salam resurfaced after the war, his posts have generated even more speculation and intrigue. In one of the entries he angrily denounced the Iraqi National Congress for appropriating the elite Iraqi Hunting Club and Mansour Social Club, wondering where he and other members would go for indoor swimming.
He doesn't like what the war has done to his lifestyle. Pity the poor boy; he went from scion of a murderous regime to just another Abdul trying to make a buck. My conclusion about Salam, six months ago:

As a supposed insider, his opinions carry weight with his numerous readers in a way that official Pentagon briefings or U.S. press reports do not. They shouldn't, because those opinions still flow from his old elite ways, and from a lifetime of steep indoctrination in party thinking. He is interested in reworking the truth about the Baath party both to assuage his own guilt and to get himself a leg up in the chaotic new Iraq. But that doesn't make him an official agent of influence. It just makes him a quirky, iconoclastic Iraqi whose life of irresponsible leisure has come to an abrupt end. His anti-American spin reflects an unconscionable irresponsibility and an effort to save himself, and truth just gets in the way of that. Thus, he is an untrustworthy witness to history.
I think that last sentence has been proven right--Salam is completely untrustworthy. Yet the Guardian hired him anyway, and they're getting from him exactly what I expected and predicted--garbage designed to lessen the Baathists' brutality while undermining our war to free his people--from people like him.

Posted by B. Preston
JunkYardBlog
50 posted on 11/22/2003 1:37:59 AM PST by anglian
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