Join 3,550 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


Exclusive Middle East sources have tracked down top Iraqi leadership’s bolt-hole:
April 3, 2003 7:09 AM   Subscribe

Exclusive Middle East sources have tracked down top Iraqi leadership’s bolt-hole: Now begin to badmouth me. Debka has a going rate that is some 2/3s on target and that makes this piece (headlines) worth considering. Too, they noted some time ago that WMD shipped to Syria. Recall in Gulf war I that they shipped planes to Iran for safe keeping and never got them back. Thus far, we have not found WMD and Iraq has not used any. Ergo....
posted by Postroad (32 comments total)

 
Beats me! Or.... ergo there are no WMD?
posted by NekulturnY at 7:21 AM on April 3, 2003


Arrrgh! My eyes! My eyes!

Debka should consider hiring a good web designer.
posted by SPrintF at 7:28 AM on April 3, 2003


"As a result of information like this—and some pretty quick word-of-mouth in the U.S.—Debka.com has experienced a massive surge of traffic in the past two weeks. Since the Sept. 11 attacks, it has gone from 150,000 visitors a week to 250,000 per week, said Giora Shamis, one of the two Israeli journalists who run the site. (Mr. Shamis and his partner, Diane Shalem, also publish a weekly newsletter at $120 a year, which at the moment has 320 paying customers.) Debka.com claims its readers include American military and intelligence officials, as well as foreign correspondents covering the Middle East.

Prior to the Sept. 11 attacks, Debka.com was, according to a Google search, most popular among right-wing sites like WorldNetDaily.com, as well as Zionist supporters of Israel and, in a few cases, religious apocalyptics who, one supposes, wanted a real-time account of the Book of Revelation. And in any case, having an agenda does not necessarily mean that your information is always inaccurate. Just ask Matt Drudge about that blue Gap dress. "



Now, what would a right-wing Israeli journal have against Syria?
posted by magullo at 7:35 AM on April 3, 2003


I think it's pretty safe to say that anyone who centers all text is out of his or her mind. Will anyone back me up on that?
posted by Outlawyr at 7:43 AM on April 3, 2003


I would not place Debka's accuracy at anywhere near 66%. I stopped scanning it in early-2002 after countless egregious misses on the Afghanistan War and possible terror attacks in the US. It is like reading a bad spy novel: entertaining but inaccurate.
posted by tranquileye at 7:51 AM on April 3, 2003


Is it falsifiable? No. It could be real, or it could be crude disinformation. I doubt we'll ever know the truth. So - it's vapourware. If anyone has a taste for this sort of stuff......try Conspiracy Planet
posted by troutfishing at 7:54 AM on April 3, 2003


Meanwhile, the American Computer Scientists Association (WTF?) claims that they have reports from sources inside Baghdad that Saddam Hussein was killed by the decapitation attack.
posted by gyc at 7:55 AM on April 3, 2003


Here's a question - how would Saddam Hussein's death ever be verified? Doesn't he have several "doubles" highly trained in playing his role? So how could we ever tell?

Even if he has been killed, what of the other top Baath Party leaders who, like Hussein, stand to be ripped limb from limb if their regime crumbles? They would surely fight just as fiercely as Saddam, denying his death all the while.

Saddam's death would be irrelevant.

I find this whole debate silly.
posted by troutfishing at 8:30 AM on April 3, 2003


why would they deny it if it was irrelevant?
posted by techgnollogic at 8:41 AM on April 3, 2003


So this Cote D'Azur De Cham Resort.... it doesn't serve Freedom Fries and Freedom Toast?

One of Saddam's body-doubles, or just some bird on a speedboat in the main picture? Answers on a postcard to DEBKA, please.
posted by Doozer at 8:58 AM on April 3, 2003


They would surely fight just as fiercely as Saddam, denying his death all the while.

Probably for a while, but I think what we're going to see eventually is a situation very similar to the fall of Berlin. The city will be surrounded and the outcome won't be in doubt. At that point I would expect that all except the most fanatical followers will either surrender or try to run like hell.
posted by Cyrano at 9:08 AM on April 3, 2003


metatalk.
posted by donkeyschlong at 9:28 AM on April 3, 2003


Here's a question - how would Saddam Hussein's death ever be verified? Doesn't he have several "doubles" highly trained in playing his role? So how could we ever tell?

Didn't Heinlein write a novel about this very thing--an impersonator becoming the leader he impersonated? Becoming Saddam ? There's a concept...
posted by y2karl at 9:34 AM on April 3, 2003


Lorenzo Smythe in Double Star--that Google!
posted by y2karl at 9:36 AM on April 3, 2003


Double Star.
posted by y2karl at 9:39 AM on April 3, 2003


I vote for Darryl Hammond taking teh place of George W Bush..
posted by Space Coyote at 9:41 AM on April 3, 2003


y2karl, the impersonator-becomes-leader meme is also a feature of Jack Vance's short story "The Augmented Agent" in the mid-eighties. A good read.
posted by clever sheep at 9:53 AM on April 3, 2003


I guess the easiest way to verify if Saddam is to compare any DNA (from a body or from whoever is claiming to be Sadam) with his surviving sons (none of which have a body double of note).
posted by grum@work at 9:58 AM on April 3, 2003


I believe that Debka is 2/3 accurate-- I have been following the site for quite a while. However, the most outrageous, explosive, and interesting allegations are the ones that always seem to turn out to be in the false 1/3.
posted by cell divide at 10:07 AM on April 3, 2003


There's an audio story that aired on PRI's Marketplace on January 18. May interest some folks. Runs about 3 minutes.
posted by infowar at 10:09 AM on April 3, 2003


Here's a question - how would Saddam Hussein's death ever be verified? Doesn't he have several "doubles" highly trained in playing his role? So how could we ever tell? .

DNA, just a strand of hair is all that is needed. They would trace it on his mom's side for verification. (so say the experts)
posted by thomcatspike at 10:40 AM on April 3, 2003




No Vacancies.

On 04-0302003 Debkafile, www.debka.com reported that Iraq had reserved the entire Cote D' Azur De Cham Resort in Lattakia, Syria, for their top leadership. Hey, cool. Secure, 600 meters of beach and mini-golf, rooms starting at $60 a night.

So I call the D.C. reservation number to check for vacancies. Well, Cham Palaces & Hotels folks went on vacation last week, hired a temp and told her only to take messages. She apologized for not being to help more since they took the Rolidex.

source:http://www.jayware.com/Chamhotel.html
posted by Postroad at 10:48 AM on April 3, 2003


Techgnollogic - As I said, Saddams death would be irrelevant - specifically because it would be unverifiable and because other Baath Party leaders would vigourously deny it, show doubles and vague (dated?) footage, read Saddam's "speeches", and so on.

So Saddam is, for a short time and for the purposes of the Baath Party defending (or tyrannizing, as it were) Baghdad, effectively immortal.

thomcatspike - Aaaah...DNA. You have to get a bit of it first, and so you have to catch or kill all of the doubles, because any surviving one of them could still be him.

Y2Karl - Speaking of which, I've been planning on watching "Being There" (the movie, starring Peter Sellars as "Chauncey Gardner") again. If you've seen it, you get my drift, I bet.
posted by troutfishing at 10:48 AM on April 3, 2003


Postroad - But maybe you're right!. If so, you can bet yer booty that a special US, British, or Israeli welcome squad is on it's way to crash the party.

The Baath party will still deny it though (damn doubles). But if they got Saddam's sons too, it would change things. [for the better].
posted by troutfishing at 10:52 AM on April 3, 2003


From here

No Vacancies.

On 04-0302003 Debkafile, www.debka.com reported that Iraq had reserved the entire Cote D' Azur De Cham Resort in Lattakia, Syria, for their top leadership. Hey, cool. Secure, 600 meters of beach and mini-golf, rooms starting at $60 a night.

So I call the D.C. reservation number to check for vacancies. Well, Cham Palaces & Hotels folks went on vacation last week, hired a temp and told her only to take messages. She apologized for not being to help more since they took the Rolidex.

posted by Espoo2 at 10:52 AM on April 3, 2003


they noted some time ago that WMD shipped to Syria.

Which gives us pretext for an invasion of Syria! Brilliant! Oops, by that time, the WMD will have been moved to Iran! On to Iran! Hey, where did they move the WMD to now? France?

Is everybody familiar with the MacGuffin?
posted by Ty Webb at 12:58 PM on April 3, 2003


I'm so fucking tired of debka. I mean, really.
posted by dogmatic at 1:47 PM on April 3, 2003


thomcatspike - Aaaah...DNA. You have to get a bit of it first

They were debating this on some news channel, why I watched it, pointless. But kept thinking, hmm a strand of hair, well we have photos of Saddam with Rummsfeld in the 80's did they get it then. They also mentioned a cigarette bud. I agree with you, saw this pic.{A cellular phone in the West Bank town of Hebron on Wednesday displays a mobile message with the image of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein saying, in Arabic: "God saves my soul for you, God destroys America."}
posted by thomcatspike at 2:12 PM on April 3, 2003


How is linking to debka.com's home page any better than linking to CNN's home page?

This is like the second worst post ever.
posted by bshort at 2:38 PM on April 3, 2003


Yeah... this post bites, primarily because Debka itself bites. Between the design and all those pop-ups, it's worse than being linked to a Geocities site.

You know what they need? Some 3D revolving Jewish Stars with blood dripping from them and some firey animated menorrahs...
posted by insomnia_lj at 4:27 PM on April 3, 2003


Oh, hey... here we go!


posted by insomnia_lj at 4:51 PM on April 3, 2003


Well then, moving right along.........
posted by troutfishing at 7:39 PM on April 3, 2003


« Older Character Heads...  |  42 days to a Googlewash.... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments