Wednesday, April 05, 2006

The Era of Saddam Hussein, When the Iraqis Lived in Safety and Had Projects for the Future

Do the Iraqis miss the era of Saddam Hussein when they still lived in safety and could eat every day, do their studies, and had projects for the future?
writes a reader of Le Monde during the third anniversary of the Iraq war, highlighting the type of information present in France (notice that she has basically answered her own question). In the chat with Patrice Claude, Le Monde's Baghdad correspondent answers
Certain Iraqis … miss not the era, but the almost total security which was theirs in the era of Saddam Hussein. The country was held firmly, there was hardly ever any bombing or kidnappings
and then he adds, almost as an aside (emphasis mine),
and the people who disappeared were generally kidnapped by agents of the régime.
Only the agents of the régime? Oh, I see… Well, that indeed makes the Saddam Hussein era just peachy, with a life of safety for every citizen and projects for the future for all. (Needless to say, the absence of bombs in the Saddam era may be explained by the fact that if you have state agents who can carry out arrests and kidnappings in open daylight, legally and with total impunity, the need for hidden agents to stealthily carry out bombings in secret becomes moot.)

More of the same type of questions are present in the chat on the political-military state of Iraq with Pierre-Jean Luizard, such as this one suggesting treachery and a world of dark plotting:
How do you explain that the Americans have not managed to capture Zarqawi?
The CNRS researcher comes out with a certain amount of hot air (notably about the Mullahs, the Americans' charges against Tehran amounting to nothing more than a "diversion" and "an attempt in the United States to put the reponsibility of the failure of a process on Iran"), but he does have this to say about the war-for-oil charge:
Contrary to what many have said, oil was not the main reason behind the war of 2003,
if only because the embargo gave Washington an ideal situation as far as oil was concerned, one in which they had the effective if indirect control of the second-largest oil reserves in the world, a situation without
the political and military cost of an occupation.
In fact, Luizard adds, most American oil companies have not wanted to enter the minefield that Iraq currently is.

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