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Uh, there were obviously two videos of Saddam's hanging, not one

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Why am I reading the Jeff Gannon article, I mean NYT article, that Joe cites below, and getting the sinking feeling that I'm reading a Bush administration press release?

The article keeps talking about the "unofficial" cell phone video. First off, we don't know for a fact that the video was unofficial. In fact, I'd wager that the White House and the Iraqi Prime Minister both wanted that video taken and distributed, just as Bush wanted the pictures of Saddam's dead sons publicly disseminated to "prove" their death.

Second, as for there being "one" cell phone video. Bull. I just watched what was clearly a second video, and it was pretty damn professionally shot for a "cell phone video." Check it out. Here is the crappy cell phone video. Now here is CNN's coverage of a second video, a video that is obviously much better quality than the "cell phone video." And note that the second video is shot right next to Saddam, so it wasn't exactly done undercover.

Also note in the video that there are several flashes as pictures are being snapped. That means the recording of the event was hardly surreptitious. They knew it was going on, and they didn't care.

Also, a little red meat for the religious right Republican extremists out there. Note that Bush was (allegedly) concerned about the execution taking place during the Muslim holiday. The White House wasn't concerned about hanging a man during the week of Christmas, oh no. They were concerned about a Muslim holiday, rather than "our" own Christian holiday. Not that I believe the White House was concerned about anything - they very likely pushed the Iraqis to kill Saddam pronto - but it is funny how Bush is publicly pandering to Islam, since his religious right supporters, and much of his own party, is made up of anti-Muslim religious bigots.

Oh yeah, and one final very interesting fact from the NYT article. If the White House was so adamant about Saddam not being killed just yet, then why did they happily hand him over to the Iraqis to be executed?

After Mr. Maliki made it clear to the Americans in Baghdad that his decision was final, the official who discussed the events on Friday night said, American commanders were told to deliver Mr. Hussein to an execution bloc in the Kadhimiya district of northern Baghdad that Mr. Hussein?s military intelligence agency used to execute countless opponents of his government. At 4 a.m., Mr. Hussein was flown by an American military helicopter from an American detention center and handed over to the Iraqis.
Yeah right. Maliki, the pit bull, made it clear to the weak, wimpy, powerless Americans that his decision was final. Seriously, how did any editor at the Times read this and keep a straight face?

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