Tales of the Tyrant
May 6, 2002 3:05 PM   Subscribe

Tales of the Tyrant is one of the best magazine articles I have read all year. A long, fascinating portrait of Saddam Hussein by the author of Black Hawk Down that has so many interesting/weird/awful details that it's too hard to excerpt just one.
posted by cell divide (6 comments total)
this is a great article, and i'm not even half-way through it. thanks, cell.
posted by moz at 3:27 PM on May 6, 2002

Great article, although the president's food is surely tested for poisons, and snipers sit atop the White House. If the president eats by the sea, government frogmen will be in the waters outside (or, at least, this has been true in the past). The current president even has a subterranean government ready to operate if he gets offed and D.C. is detroyed. It's also been noted by countless authors that the White House life can become a life of isolation. And I'm sure that the president is deceived all the time. These rather mundane type of details were made, in the article, to seem exclusive to non-democratically elected leaders. Ain't so.
posted by raysmj at 3:29 PM on May 6, 2002

Fascinating article, thanks.

Here's just one of those chilling excerpts:

"After seizing power, Saddam had Yahya, a well-educated man whose sophistication he resented, confined to prison. On his orders Yahya was assigned to push a wheelbarrow from cell to cell, collecting the prisoners' slop buckets. He would call out "Rubbish! Rubbish!" The former Prime Minister's humiliation was a source of delight to Saddam until the day Yahya died, in prison. He still likes to tell the story, chuckling over the words "Rubbish! Rubbish!"
posted by GaelFC at 3:56 PM on May 6, 2002

If you don't subscribe to the Atlantic Monthly, you should remedy that situation post haste. I've been a subscriber since I was 18, and am still, even though I'm currently living on the other side of the pond.

Almost every single article is worth reading - travel, food, books, music. I even enjoyed the article from a couple of years ago on how to boil the perfect egg.

The subscription price is circa $12.95 per annum - can't beat it.
posted by syzygy at 5:13 PM on May 6, 2002

hmm, that was very good. i think i've somewhat changed my views on a possible invasion even. perhaps bush's reasons are wrong or questionable, but i don't think the right reasons would be that hard to sell.
posted by rhyax at 6:10 PM on May 6, 2002

The tyrant must steal sleep... For those hours he must trust someone, and nothing is more dangerous to the tyrant than trust.

(I never knew 24 had made it to Baghdad...)
posted by CatherineB at 8:40 AM on May 7, 2002

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