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Iraqi Dissidents Seize Embassy in Berlin.
August 20, 2002 8:31 AM   Subscribe

Iraqi Dissidents Seize Embassy in Berlin. An Iraqi dissident group calling for the overthrow of Saddam Hussein occupied the Iraqi Embassy in Berlin Tuesday and took several hostages, including the ambassador. Is this just a stunt before the upcoming German elections?
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood (28 comments total)

 
German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder has been one of the most vocal opposers of overthrowing Saddam. Calling the act of sending German troops an "adventure" in Iraq. He is up for election this fall.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 8:35 AM on August 20, 2002


Sounds to me like CIA project management in action!
posted by TuffAustin at 8:37 AM on August 20, 2002


And remember, these "dissidents" aren't "terrorists". These dissidents are "freedom fighters". Why? Because Bush hates Saddam. Ah, moral relativism, I love the smell of it in the morning. :)

Oh, here's a statement from the embassy takers.
posted by dejah420 at 8:40 AM on August 20, 2002


What would have happened if in 1938 Anti-Hitler Jews (or any Germans for that matter) would have taken over the German embassy in Washington D.C. or London?

The "dissidents" claim parallels to that struggle.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 8:48 AM on August 20, 2002


As soon as I heard of this, my first thoughts included the movie "Wag the Dog"...am I too cynical, or what?
posted by jaronson at 8:51 AM on August 20, 2002


I googled for them, not a sausage.
posted by col at 8:52 AM on August 20, 2002


In London, a spokesman for the Iraqi National Congress -- a leading umbrella group for opponents of Saddam -- said his group had no involvement with the embassy incident.

He said the Iraqi Democratic Opposition of Germany was a new group, but he was not familiar with its members.


Mmmmmm. Delicious splinter groups.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 8:54 AM on August 20, 2002


Why is it that every news site except CNN is reporting this. Heaven forbid they should take this off the front page:


TERROR ON TAPE 
Bin Laden's call to war
A never-before-seen 1998 video obtained by CNN shows Osama bin Laden.....

posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 8:55 AM on August 20, 2002


how does wag the dog relate to this...how, how, how. cause i see no bow-wow-wow

What would have happened if in 1938 Anti-Hitler Jews that would have been a job for scareface Skorzeny. and i bet we would have let him do it in 38'

Sounds to me like CIA project management in action

no, the geo-pol fall out would be to great. And we might lose the germans as an effective hospital unit during the next war.

seizing an embassy. that is good. my hat is off who ran this one.
posted by clavdivs at 8:59 AM on August 20, 2002


since it's in the "top news" section at cnn, i'd say they are reporting it.
posted by zoopraxiscope at 9:00 AM on August 20, 2002


Man this reeks. This article on CNN.com (see bottom) has a statement from the official Iraqi opposition group in London that they have nothing to do with it and they limit their activities to Iraq proper.

dejah420 is right, how come this is act of freedom fighters eh ? BS. This does smell of CIA, some how to try to change German public opinion by showing that there are groups who are willing to use force against Saddam.
posted by adnanbwp at 9:03 AM on August 20, 2002


Everyone's reporting it. It's the top story on the news across the US. Don't they have discussion forums at Fox News or something?
posted by Kafkaesque at 9:04 AM on August 20, 2002


zoopraxiscope: It just appeared on the "Top News: section, about 45 mins after it happened, and next to such relevant news like:

Porn star to join next 'Survivor' cast


I was making fun of CNN sensationalizing these tapes the "found" in a slow news month, and now that there is some news, they don't care.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 9:09 AM on August 20, 2002


Kafkaesque: No, does CNN?
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 9:12 AM on August 20, 2002


my hat is off who ran this one.--clavdivs

Hence my "Wag the Dog" reference. If I understand your comment correctly.
posted by jaronson at 9:12 AM on August 20, 2002


If a meteorite were to fall out of the sky and hit Saddam on the head, people would find a way to blame the US for it. If he were to keel over dead from a brain aneurysm, people would speculate about how the CIA poisoned him or hit him with a "death ray".

I think we oughta just whack the f**ker and be done with it. We'll be blamed for it anyhow.
posted by mrmanley at 9:13 AM on August 20, 2002


well steve if you were making fun of their sensationalizing, then that would be fine....except your statement above:

Why is it that every news site except CNN is reporting this

was totally inaccurate, since they were reporting it on their web page. if you want to make fun of CNN go ahead. but be accurate about it.
posted by zoopraxiscope at 9:19 AM on August 20, 2002


I guess I'm just tired of seeing CNN's top story on the news in the morning, and then seeing it on MeFi. But hey, carry on, I overreacted.
posted by Kafkaesque at 9:20 AM on August 20, 2002


zoopraxiscope: I am just going to drop this, because this thread isn't about CNN, anyways. This is about the Embassy Takeover....
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 9:26 AM on August 20, 2002


Porn star to join next 'Survivor' cast

Finally some news I can use.
posted by insomnyuk at 9:30 AM on August 20, 2002


Some context:
BBC story with details about 4 anti-Saddam groups
Federation of American Scientists on Iraqi Shia rebels
WSJ on Iraqi tribal groups, which have become Saddam's "prime source of power outside Baghdad."

[This post would have been better if it had included a few links to help us sort out the various Iraqi opposition groups, instead of just giving the community a single link to a short news story that's being widely reported. It's not that hard to deepen a post with a few context links before rushing to post breaking news to the front page, and really should be the norm. This issue is currently being discussed on MeTa.]
posted by mediareport at 9:44 AM on August 20, 2002


Embassy standoff is now over
posted by TBoneMcCool at 11:17 AM on August 20, 2002


Armed arab men who attack embassies are now dissdents, not terrorists. Gotcha. The media isn't towing any party lines. I swear, we've always callled them dissidents. The, umm, new The Chicago Manual of Style juuust came out. Go back to work, all is good.
posted by skallas at 11:59 AM on August 20, 2002


Skallas: they weren't armed, and they didn't attack anyone, they marched in peacefully and "took hostages" which basically means they occupied the building. Why would the media or anyone else call them terrorists?
posted by dhoyt at 12:21 PM on August 20, 2002


dhoyt: everyone's a terrorist these days. Alan Iverson was charged with terroristic threats, for example.
posted by insomnyuk at 12:34 PM on August 20, 2002


A previously uknown Iraqi dissident group? These guys are either total crackpots or the CIA is somehow behind it.
posted by mogwai at 12:41 PM on August 20, 2002


Fortunately, Iraqi democracy remained unharmed. We can all rest easy tonight!
posted by dhartung at 12:43 PM on August 20, 2002


ghoyt: they weren't armed, and they didn't attack anyone,

Read the article. They were armed. Being armed and taking hostages is what terrorists do. If you were a witness I wonder how you would characterized men with weapons taking over an embassy for political reasons.

Being held against your will and being kidnapped is a form of assualt.
posted by skallas at 4:00 PM on August 20, 2002


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