U.S. taking on Hussein Strongman Role

It shouldn’t be a sur­prise but it makes me sick any­way. The _Washington Post_ reports that the “U.S. occu­pa­tion is hir­ing Sad­dam Hussein’s ex-spies”:www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A37331-2003Aug23.html.
It must be a good job mar­ket for mid-level Sad­dam Hus­sein loy­al­ists. Back in June, we learned that the U.S. had put “ex-Iraqi gen­er­als in charge of many Iraq cities”:http://www.nonviolence.org/articles/000027.php (at the same time the U.S. can­celed promised elec­tions). The U.S. trum­pets cap­ture of big-name Iraqi lead­ers like “Chem­i­cal Ali”:www.msnbc.com/news/955391.asp?vts=082120030615 but then qui­et­ly hires their assis­tants. The major­i­ty of the new U.S. intel­li­gence recruits come from Sad­dam Hussein’s Mukhabarat, an agency whose name is said to inspire dread among Iraqis.
The infra­struc­ture of Sad­dam Hussein’s repres­sion appa­ra­tus is being rebuilt as a U.S. repres­sion appa­ra­tus. The stat­ues of Sad­dam Hus­sein go down, the “play­ing card” Iraqi fig­ure­heads get caught, but not much changes.
The arti­cle says that the new spy hir­ing is “covert” but it’s appar­ent­ly no secret in Iraq. even the Iraqi Gov­ern­ing Coun­cil, a dum­my rep­re­sen­ta­tive body hand­picked by U.S. forces, has expressed “adamant objec­tions” to the recruit­ment cam­paign:
bq. “We’ve always crit­i­cized the pro­ce­dure of recruit­ing from the old régime’s offi­cers. We think it is a mis­take,” Mah­di said. “We’ve told them you have some bad peo­ple in your secu­ri­ty appa­ra­tus.”
No, the “covert” audi­ence is the U.S. pub­lic, who might start feel­ing quesy about the Iraq War if they knew how eas­i­ly the U.S. was slip­ping into Sad­dam Hussein’s shoes.

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