Skip to comments.Ex-Iraq Information Chief Blames Saddam (Baghdad Bob)
Posted on 09/17/2003 6:00:50 PM PDT by kattracks
The Associated Press
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates Sept. 17 Iraq's former information minister said Wednesday that ousted President Saddam Hussein made tactical errors in his fight against U.S.-led forces.
Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf, who drew international attention during the war for making obviously absurd claims of Iraqi military victories, criticized Saddam's decision to divide Iraq into four military zones five days before the war.
"It (the decision) was a direct mistake of the president and the leadership," al-Sahhaf said on Abu Dhabi Television. That "led to fatal mistakes."
He complained that the zones were placed under the control of civilians, including Saddam's younger son Qusai, and his trusted aides, Ali Hassan al-Majid and Izzat Ibrahim. He said the military experts were relegated to secondary positions.
Al-Sahhaf, who is expected to appear in four more episodes of the program "Al-Sahhaf's War," also denied that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.
"Chemical weapons and missiles were destroyed in the 1991 war," he said.
During the interview, the station aired what it called exclusive footage, acquired inside Iraq, of Saddam meeting with top officials just days before the war.
In one segment, Saddam is seen calling Arab leaders "agents" for suggesting he go into exile as a way to avert the war. Saudi Arabia and several Gulf states had supported the idea.
"Nobody dared to speak to Saddam about the idea of going into exile," Al-Sahhaf said, saying it was never considered by the president.
Al-Sahhaf disappeared April 9, the day Baghdad fell, and reportedly hid in a relative's home. He was not included in the list of 55 most wanted Iraqi officials and left Baghdad for the United Arab Emirates on July 10.
This must be true. Would Baghdad Bob lie to us?
The First Update - 9 April Last known remark of M.S.S., to John Burns of NY Times : "I NOW INFORM YOU THAT YOU ARE TOO FAR FROM REALITY."
"There are no American infidels in Baghdad. Never!"
"My feelings - as usual - we will slaughter them all"
"Our initial assessment is that they will all die"
"I blame Al-Jazeera - they are marketing for the Americans!"
"God will roast their stomachs in hell at the hands of Iraqis."
"They're coming to surrender or be burned in their tanks."
"No I am not scared, and neither should you be!"
"Be assured. Baghdad is safe, protected"
"Who are in control, they are not in control of anything - they don't even control themselves!"
"We are not afraid of the Americans. Allah has condemned them. They are stupid. They are stupid" (dramatic pause) "and they are condemned."
"The Americans, they always depend on a method what I call ... stupid, silly. All I ask is check yourself. Do not in fact repeat their lies."
"I can say, and I am responsible for what I am saying, that they have
started to commit suicide under the walls of Baghdad. We
will encourage them to commit more suicides quickly."
"I can assure you that those villains will recognize, will discover in appropriate time in the future how stupid they are and how they are pretending things which have never taken place."
"We have destroyed 2 tanks, fighter planes, 2 helicopters and their shovels - We have driven them back."
"The authority of the civil defense ... issued a warning to the civilian population not to pick up any of those pencils because they are booby traps," he said, adding that the British and American forces were "immoral mercenaries" and "war criminals" for such behavior.
"I am not talking about the American people and the British people," he said. "I am talking about those mercenaries. ... They have started throwing those pencils, but they are not pencils, they are booby traps to kill the children."
"We have them surrounded in their tanks"
"The American press is all about lies! All they tell is lies, lies and more lies!"
"I have detailed information about the situation...which completely proves that what they allege are illusions . . . They lie every day."
"Lying is forbidden in Iraq. President Saddam Hussein will tolerate nothing but truthfulness as he is a man of great honor and integrity. Everyone is encouraged to speak freely of the truths evidenced in their eyes and hearts."
"Now even the American command is under siege. We are hitting it from the north, east, south and west. We chase them here and they chase us there. But at the end we are the people who are laying siege to them. And it is not them who are besieging us."
"because we will behead you all"
"Let the American infidels bask in their illusion"
"I triple guarantee you, there are no American soldiers in Baghdad."
Britain "is not worth an old shoe"
"we have given them a sour taste"
Of US troops: "They are most welcome. We will butcher them."
"We will welcome them with bullets and shoes."
"We are in control. They are in a state of hysteria. Losers, they think that by killing civilians and trying to distort the feelings of the people they will win. I think they will not win, those bastards."
"The British forces which were dropped there have been eliminated mostly on the (battle)field, except for those who fled ... It is a complete defeat ... Amazingly the Americans have pushed the British to do that. They pushed them ahead as if it is an experiment. The result was very tragic for the British."
We have placed them in a quagmire from which they can never emerge except dead
"Washington has thrown their soldiers on the fire"
"I speak better English than this villain Bush"
"These cowards have no morals. They have no shame about lying"
"They're not even [within] 100 miles [of Baghdad]. They are not in any
place. They hold no place in Iraq. This is an illusion ... they are
trying to sell to the others an illusion."
"Their failure in this regard is abysmal. They want to tell the world changes thought - as a matter of fact, they do not respect the world, they want to tell taxpayers and the domestic public to keep them deceived. We will embroil them, confuse them and keep them in the quagmire. They have begun to tell more lies so that they might continue with the perpetration of their crimes. May they be accursed."
"We will kill them all........most of them."
"They are like a snake and we are going to cut it in pieces."
"They do not even have control over themselves! Do not believe them!"
"I would like to clarify a simple fact here: How can you lay siege to a whole country? Who is really under siege now? Baghdad cannot be besieged. Al-Nasiriyah cannot be besieged. Basra cannot be besieged."
"That bastard the American Minister of Defense Rumsfeld, and I won't say shamelessly, because they don't know what shame means. These are criminals. The whole word can hear the warning sirens. This criminal sitting in the White House is a pathetic criminal and his Defense Minister deserves to be beaten. These criminals lie to the world because they are criminals by nature and conditioning. They consider this a military site! Shame on you! You will forever be shamed! You have ruined the reputation of the American people in the most terrible way! Shame on you! And we will destroy you!"
"They are trapped in Umm Qasr. They are trapped near Basra. They are trapped near Nasiriyah. They are trapped near Najaf. They are trapped everywhere."
Called Americans and Brits "Tarateer" In Iraqi slang, Tartoor means a guy full of farts (i.e. hot air)
"they are nowhere near the airport ..they are lost in the desert...they can not read a compass...they are retarded."
"They are not in Baghdad. They are not in control of any airport. I tell you this. It is all a lie. They lie. It is a hollywood movie. You do not believe them."
"Faltering forces of infidels cannot just enter a country of 26 million people and lay besiege to them! They are the ones who will find themselves under siege. Therefore, in reality whatever this miserable Rumsfeld has been saying, he was talking about his own forces. Now even the American command is under siege."
"They tried to bring a small number of tanks and personnel carriers in through al-Durah but they were surrounded and most of their infidels had their throats cut."
"Our estimates are that none of them will come out alive unless they surrender to us quickly."
"We made them drink poison last night and Saddam Hussein's soldiers and his great forces gave the Americans a lesson which will not be forgotten by history. Truly."
"On this occasion, I am not going to mention the number of the infidels who were killed and the number of destroyed vehicles. The operation continues"
"Today we slaughtered them in the airport. They are out of Saddam International Airport."
"The force that was in the airport, this force was destroyed."
"We're giving them a real lesson today. Heavy doesn't accurately describe the level of casualties we have inflicted."
"Their infidels are committing suicide by the hundreds on the gates of Baghdad. Be assured, Baghdad is safe, protected."
"Today I have visited whole Baghdad city, no invaders found. You go and see how we have ousted them from this city. They are cying outside and waiting to receive bullets. They will be killed shortly."
"These images are not the suburbs of Baghdad. From what I glimpsed, these gardens with rows of palm trees on the side, which you saw in the images, are located in the south of Abu Ghreib, where we have surrounded the Americans and British."
When told coalition troops occupied Baghdad airport -
"...at Saddam Airport? Now that's just silly!"
"The situation is excellent, they are going to try to approach Baghdad...and I believe their grave will be there."
"NO", snapped Mr al-Sahaf, "We have retaken the airport. There are NO Americans there. I will take you there and show you. IN ONE HOUR!"
"We defeated them yesterday. God willing, I will provide you with more information. I swear by God, I swear by God, those who are staying in Washington and London have thrown these mercenaries in a crematorium."
"Please, please! The Americans are relying on what I called yesterday a desperate and stupid method."
"They will be burnt. We are going to tackle them"
"We blocked them inside the city. Their rear is blocked"
"Today we slaughtered them in the airport. They are out of Saddam International Airport. The force that was in the airport, this force was destroyed."
"They are trying to fool you. They are showing any old pictures of buildings. They even went into the VIP section of the airport, just because Saddam Hussein may have sat in such and such a chair or slept in such and such a bed"
"We went into the airport and crushed them, we cleaned the WHOOOLE place out, they were slaughtered"
"Yes, the american troops have advanced further. This will only make it easier for us to defeat them"
"Their casualties and bodies are many."
[On surrenders] "Those are not Iraqi soldiers at all. Where did they bring them from?"
"Just look carefully, I only want you to look carefully. Do not repeat the lies of liars. Do not become like them. Once again, I blame al-Jazeera before it ascertains what takes place. Please, make sure of what you say and do not play such a role."
"This is unbased"
"Search for the truth. I tell you things and I always ask you to verify what I say. I told you yesterday that there was an attack and a retreat at Saddam's airport."
"I have detailed information about the situation . . . which completely proves that what they allege are illusions . . . They lie every day."
"You can go and visit those places. Nothing there, nothing at all. There are Iraqi checkpoints. Everything is okay."
"This boa, the American columns, are being besieged between Basra and other towns north, west, south and west of Basra....Now even the American command is under siege. We are hitting it from the north, east, south and west. We chase them here and they chase us there."
"By God, I think this is rather very unlikely. This is merely a prattle. The fact is that as soon as they reach Baghdad gates, we will besiege them and slaughter them....Wherever they go they will find themselves encircled."
"They (the U.S.) are deceiving their soldiers and their officers that aggressing against Iraq and invading Iraq will be like a picnic. This is a very stupid lie they are telling their soldiers, what they are facing is a definite death."
"Listen, this explosion does not frighten us any langer. The cruise missiles do not frighten anyone. We are catching them like fish in a river. I mean here that over the past two days we managed to shoot down 196 missiles before they hit their target."
"Blair...is accusing us of executing British soldiers. We want to tell him that we have not executed anybody. They are either killed in battle, most of them get killed because they are cowards anyway, the rest they just get captured."
"They fled. The American louts fled. Indeed, concerning the fighting waged by the heroes of the Arab Socialist Baath Party yesterday, one amazing thing really is the cowardice of the American soldiers. we had not anticipated this."
"We will slaughter them, Bush Jr. and his international gang of bastards!"
But about the chemical weapons, he could be telling the truth, if this article by Rolf Ekeus is accurate. The gist of the article - and considering the source, I think it highly credible - is that Iraq, during and after the Iran-Iraq war, discovered that its stockpiled chemical weapons rapidly lost their effectiveness, and that Iraq therefor destroyed/dumped its existing - and useless - weapons and concentrated thereafter on developing techniques & facilities for rapidly producing new weapons/warheads in the event of war. Iraq lacked the technology to produce weapons that could sit on the shelf for years and remain effective. This is what makes it so difficult to find their weapons systems: You're not looking for a warhead, you're looking for a factory, and that factory can be, and probably is being, used to create fertilizer or yeast cultures or something else innocuous.
Gotta give ol' BB this, though: he did lighten up for us what is otherwise a most somber business...
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