Combs Spouts Off

"It's my opinion and it's very true."

  • Calendar

    July 2024
    S M T W T F S
  • Recent Posts

  • Tag Cloud

  • Archives

Iraqi Freedom Day

Posted by Richard on April 9, 2006

Saddam statue fallsOn this day, April 9 three years ago, Saddam Hussein fled Baghdad, and the people of Iraq, with help from American soldiers, toppled statues of him all over the country. How are the Iraqi people marking the occasion? How are the major legacy media reporting it? It is, after all, a holiday in Iraq — how was the holiday celebrated?

Well, you’ll search the news in vain for any story about or pictures of celebrations, rallies, etc. Is it really possible that there were no public gatherings anywhere in Iraq to celebrate the fall of Saddam? Or were those gatherings just too far away from Baghdad’s green zone to cover? Or is there some other explanation for how the day’s news from Iraq was reported?

A long AP report from Iraq began:

Five roadside bombs killed at least three people in Iraq on Sunday — the three-year anniversary of the Baghdad’s fall to U.S. forces. Iraq police and soldiers bolstered security in the capital to prevent attacks on "Freedom Day."

This was followed by 20 more paragraphs of negative quotes, dour predictions, and additional reports of violence. Only the 22nd and 23rd paragraphs of the story offered any counterpoint:

But some Iraqis embraced the memory of Hussein’s statue coming to the ground.

"This is a dear day — we got rid of the dictatorship," said Fadhil Abul-Sebah. "It doesn’t mark the fall of Baghdad, it marks the fall of Saddam … and the regime, because Baghdad will never fall."

Here’s a sampling of headlines from Iraqi Freedom Day:

Violence continues on anniversary of destruction of Saddam statue

Iraq parliament could convene soon (almost hopeful, and from Reuters!)

Bombs kill 4 on Iraq’s ‘Freedom Day’

Bittersweet memories of day Saddam’s statue fell

Iraq Freedom Day Marred By Violence

Violence Continues On Iraq’s Freedom Day

Car bomb kills four on third anniversary of fall of Baghdad

Bombs mark Freedom Day

More violence marks holiday in Iraq

The AP also had a story, New Baghdad Sculpture Holds Little Meaning, about the modernistic statue that replaced Saddam in Firdous Square. To be honest, the statue sounds pretty awful, so I can understand some of the attitudes expressed by the interviewees. But this bit of irony struck me:

The sculpture that replaced the statue of Saddam Hussein toppled three years ago is supposed to represent freedom. But many Iraqis say it has little meaning when fear, violence and uncertainty dominate their lives.

"It has no meaning because there is no freedom," said Mohammed Ahmed, who operates a currency exchange shop nearby.

No freedom, Mr. Ahmed? Would you have dared to say that in public three years and one day ago?

Subscribe To Site:

One Response to “Iraqi Freedom Day”

  1. Jan from Denver said

    Mr. Currency Exchanger, were you able to do that work under Saddam? You at least were not able to deal in US dollars. I remember the story of the business men who had their hands cut off because they were using US dollars. Oh, by the way, they received free artificial limbs from the US following the liberation of Iraq.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.