We understand that, ever since the timing of the initial invasion — whose urgency was partly dictated by the need to “finish the job” well in advance of the 2004 election cycle — the Bush administration has done everything it can to orchestrate events in Iraq for maximum electoral impact.
So the fact that Saddam Hussein’s verdict has emerged immediately preceding U.S. elections can be safely ascribed to Bush’s desperate need to show some results from the Iraq fiasco.
This morning, White House spokesman Tony Snow said that suggestions that the U.S. “schemed” with the Iraqi court to time the verdict were “preposterous.” “The judiciary is operating independently,” he said. “It’s important to give [Iraqis] credit for running their own government.”
No, I don’t think the White House needed any “scheming.” The Iraqi court knows exactly what its “mission” is without being explicitly ordered. Coordination doesn’t require command.
The simple fact remains: this verdict represents a last-minute spasm of the GOP’s desperate hang-on-to-power campaign. And the White House is doing its Orwellian part in loudly denying the fact and protesting the Iraqis’ independence.
Sadly for them, the election’s outcome won’t really make a difference to the bloodshed in Iraq, the dynamics of which long ago spun out of American control. And once U.S. forces have abandoned the wreckage of the occupation, how long do you think Saddam’s judges have left to live?
UPDATE: It seems the court didn’t actually even finish preparing the full verdict. But there was some strange compulsion to report the verdict in abbreviated form on Sunday. See Josh Marshall’s post. This pretty much shreds the “Iraqis are independent, they work on their own timetable” lie.
[tags]saddam hussein, tony snow[/tags]
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