NY Times: Saddam re-emerging as 'Sunni Arab hero'
Saddam Hussein is re-emerging on the "Arab street" as a Sunni hero who stoically endured torment and humiliation before his execution, The New York Times will report Saturday.
"In the week since Saddam Hussein was hanged in an execution steeped in sectarian overtones, his public image in the Arab world, formerly that of a convicted dictator, has undergone a resurgence of admiration and awe," writes Hassan M. Fattah for the Times.
The article cites events across the Arab sphere of influence, from Morocco to Lebanon, in which governments and common citizens have expressed an outpouring of grief and outrage at the fate of Hussein, a Sunni, who had been sentenced to death ostensibly for a massacre of Shi'ites in 1982.
Frank Rich: Surge is a sham; Forces that killed Sheehan's son now run Iraq
In his latest Sunday column, New York Times columnist Frank Rich contrasts how President Ford and President Bush handled Vietnam and Iraq. Contrary to Bush who wants to keep "refighting a war that is finished," the late President Ford – "a consistent Vietnam hawk" – assumed power during "the final throes of the fiasco" and "recognized reality when he saw it."
Rich also condemns the "awful power of the Saddam snuff film," calls the surge – which "the press should start calling by its rightful name, escalation" – a "sham," and argues that the forces that killed "peace mom" Cindy Sheehan's son now basically control Iraq.
"His real mission," Rich writes of Bush, "is to float the 'we're not winning, we're not losing' status quo until Jan. 20, 2009."
Wesley Clark: Bush's 'surge' will backfire
The odds are that President George Bush will announce a "surge" of up to 20,000 additional US troops in Iraq. But why? Will this deliver a "win"? The answers: a combination of misunderstanding and desperation; and, probably not.
The recent congressional elections - which turned over control of both houses to the Democrats - were largely a referendum on President Bush, and much of the vote reflected public dissatisfaction with the war in Iraq. Most Americans see the US effort as failing, and believe that some different course of action must be taken. Most favour withdrawing forces soon, if not immediately. The report of the Iraq Study Group is widely seen as a formal confirmation of US failure in Iraq.
Revealed: Israel plans nuclear strike on Iran
ISRAEL has drawn up secret plans to destroy Iran’s uranium enrichment facilities with tactical nuclear weapons.
Two Israeli air force squadrons are training to blow up an Iranian facility using low-yield nuclear “bunker-busters”, according to several Israeli military sources.
The attack would be the first with nuclear weapons since 1945, when the United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The Israeli weapons would each have a force equivalent to one-fifteenth of the Hiroshima bomb.
Under the plans, conventional laser-guided bombs would open “tunnels” into the targets. “Mini-nukes” would then immediately be fired into a plant at Natanz, exploding deep underground to reduce the risk of radioactive fallout.
Tehran: Israel will regret any attack
Iran came out strongly in response to a report on Sunday that Israel planned to attack Teheran's nuclear sites, declaring that any attack would be met with a response and that "anyone who attacks will regret their actions very quickly."
According to Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Muhammad Ali Husseini, the report published in the London-based Sunday Times proved that Israel was in possession of nuclear weapons.
Iraqi PM reveals US crackdown
President Bush is to announce this week that up to 30,000 extra troops will be thrown into the battle for Baghdad. They will be part of a crackdown against insurgents and the largely Shia death squads who have brought Iraq to the brink of civil war.
The final shape of Bush's new strategy began to emerge yesterday in a series of leaks and statements in Washington and Baghdad ahead of his announcement, expected on Tuesday.