Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
January 03, 2007

Cellophan Promotion?

Blogger Attaturk of Rising Hegemon is currently guestblogging at Atrios' linked to a NYT piece and cited from it:

...a prosecutor at the trial that condemned Mr. Hussein to death, said that one of two men he had seen holding a cellphone camera aloft to make a video of Mr. Hussein’s last moments — up to and past the point where he fell through the trapdoor — was Mowaffak al-Rubaie, Mr. Maliki’s national security adviser.

But reading the NYT report now, that part has been changed to:

A prosecutor who attended the execution, Munkith al-Faroun, said he thought one of the invited witnesses had recorded the session on a cellphone, but he could not recall his name.

Spiiderweb and Josh Marshall have followed that story.

Al-Rubaie, Mr. Cellophan, is said to be a CIA asset. If he filmed Saddam's hanging and leaked the video, one must see this as an act of the U.S. occupation of Iraq.

The reason to do this can be found in the "Moqtada" chanting during the hanging. Moqtada al-Sadr is still the only force working on a allignment beween Sunni and Shia in Iraq. To have his name chanted during Saddam's excecution and to publish such might have been seen as a reasonable strategy to break that forming alliance.

Meanwhile, suddenly Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki wants to urgently leave his job.

Will al-Rubaie now get his deserved promotion?

Posted by b on January 3, 2007 at 17:45 UTC | Permalink

Comments

Iraq's National Security Adviser, Mouwaffaq al-Rubaie, said the shouting was "unprofessional, disgusting and shouldn't have happened".

taking the video tho was highly professional

thanks hamburger

Posted by: annie and a swedish kind of death | Jan 3 2007 18:03 utc | 1

Bernhard,

The Newsweek article you linked to says al-Rubaie is not a CIA asset. Is there another source for "is said to be a CIA asset"?

Your suggestion that leaking the video to undermine al-Sadr's threat of alliance-building sounds plausible.

Promotions all around, I say.

Posted by: Hamburger | Jan 3 2007 18:06 utc | 2

hamburger- newsweek itself is an asset. for more on al-rubaie, see max fuller's Crying Wolf: Media Disinformation and Death Squads in Occupied Iraq

Posted by: b real | Jan 3 2007 18:15 utc | 3

billmon had an excellent mr cellophane post. damn, it's a cruel cruel world he took his search engine away from us. damn

Posted by: annie | Jan 3 2007 18:22 utc | 4

thankis b real for that link

Posted by: r'giap | Jan 3 2007 18:33 utc | 5

From b real's link which includes link to the sources:

As the new Iraqi state apparatus developed, CMAD was split between the ministries of Defence and Interior, with an ‘elite corps’ creamed off to form the National Intelligence Service (Detroit Free Press, op. cit.). To oversee all three bodies, the National Intelligence Coordination Committee was established, headed, as National Security Advisor (appointed in April 2004), by Mowaffak Rubaie. This ‘leading Shiite moderate’ had been a spokesman for the Dawa Party in the 1980s when it was a serious terrorist organisation targeting Iraq, before moving on to help coordinate the Iraqi opposition from London (Asia Times Online, op. cit.). In London he worked with the Khoei Foundation, a pro-US charitable organisation that has distributed money for the CIA and is linked with the National Endowment for Democracy through Prime minister Jaafari’s advisor Laith Kuba, another long-term CIA asset (Village Voice).

Posted by: b | Jan 3 2007 18:35 utc | 6

The cellphone film was not a leak, it was a most deliberate act of pissing on Saddam's head.

Posted by: ralphieboy | Jan 3 2007 19:46 utc | 7

b- your link to atrios is botched

and, OT but WRT my assertion of newsweek being an asset, here's a look back at operation mockingbird

Posted by: b real | Jan 3 2007 20:11 utc | 8

Deliberate, planned, spontaneous, whatever. Today, people with cell phones in rich Europe film anything, preferably shock images. Some even create scenes of violence - ‘act’ - to make a splash by sending the vid around. These are happy slappings, mock rapes, attempts at porn, or they just show people in unhappy and disadvantageous positions, teachers on the toilet, children crying because they are being racketted, that kind of thing. Some manage to film what might be crimes, such as abusers of children, aggressive dogs let loose in parks, and people in authority acting bad.

Apparently, the US is for once behind, because most people don’t have cells with a cam. Too expensive?

That Saddam’s execution would be shot (sic), and televised, was a given.

How it was organised ... who knows.

Posted by: Noirette | Jan 3 2007 20:14 utc | 9

So if the thing was leaked to embarrass Sadr, is it possible that the guys singing his name were themselves stooges, and not true Sadrists? Just wondering, actually, I have no clue here.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Jan 3 2007 23:37 utc | 10

Bernhard, thanx for the link.

Posted by: SPIIDERWEB™ | Jan 4 2007 1:03 utc | 11

Moqtada al-Sadr is still the only force working on a allignment beween Sunni and Shia in Iraq. To have his name chanted during Saddam's excecution and to publish such might have been seen as a reasonable strategy to break that forming alliance.

Yes, and in case it isn't enough, one can always count on assorted idiots around the world to fan the flames:

(terrible machine translation from Italian)

Corriere della Sera: Muqtada Al-Sadr was among of the executioners
(snip)
Two (Saudi) newspapers, "Al-Riad" and "Al Watan", cite as source somes eyewitness - saying "I have seen Al Sadr to be put herself the black mask inside the room- has explained the witness - also been present Abdulaziz Al-Hakim. They were among the six men with the face covered that are seen in the images broadcasted by the TV".
(snip)

And riper fruits are taking a dive for it: Is this Al-Sadr?

As an aside, I checked Nur al-Cubicle to see if she had more on the Italian coverage, and there I found not Sadr, but this:

Update: I believe La Repubblica reported that the Iranian ambassador was present at the execution of Saddam.

Posted by: Alamet | Jan 4 2007 1:26 utc | 12

@b real @8 - corrected

Posted by: b | Jan 4 2007 5:37 utc | 13

billmon had an excellent mr cellophane post. damn, it's a cruel cruel world he took his search engine away from us. damn

Google cache to the rescue!

http://72.14.253.104/search?q=cache:UrSaEpVn2GMJ:billmon.org/archives/001446.html+%2Bcellophane+%2Bbillmon&hl=en&gl=au&ct=clnk&cd=7

Posted by: DM | Jan 4 2007 9:00 utc | 14

OK - forget it - wrong link.

.. but you can try. just put +billmon +{whatever} - search (and check you have the correct reference) - then click on the "Cached" link.

Posted by: DM | Jan 4 2007 9:06 utc | 15

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