Breaking News: Comical Ali/Baghdad Bob Dead!

John A. Quayle blueoval at SGI.NET
Wed Apr 16 09:47:53 MDT 2003


Iranian newspapers report that laughable Iraqi Information Minister
Mohammed Saeed al-Sahaf has killed himself.
- Reuters

April 16, 2003 --

WASHINGTON - It could just be more of Iraqi Information Minister Mohammed
Saeed al-Sahaf's trademark disinformation, but there were reports yesterday
that he committed suicide.

Two Iranian newspapers reported that Saddam's notorious spinmeister, whose
outlandish briefings on the state of the Iraq war earned him the nickname
"Comical Ali," hanged himself shortly after the fall of Baghdad last week.

The newspapers Al Wifaq and Mardomsalari said the story of al-Sahaf's
"suicide" came from unnamed Iraqi war refuges in the town of Dehlorn.

The reports said al-Sahaf was ordered to stay at his post and continue to
give the impression that Saddam was in control even while other regime
leaders and military commanders were fleeing.

Al-Sahaf was said to have hanged himself last Wednesday, hours after U.S.
forces took control of Baghdad.

Are these reports accurate? Or were they planted by the master of
disinformation himself in the hope that U.S. forces won't look for him?

Centcom and Pentagon officials say they have no confirmation al-Sahaf is
dead and say reports of his demise, to paraphrase Mark Twain, may have been
greatly exaggerated.

Even more intriguing is the fact that despite his high profile during the
war, the former information minister is not one of the 55 most wanted
regime figures whose faces and names were put on decks of cards that were
distributed to U.S. troops in Iraq.

"He's a person of interest to us to be sure, but not a major one," said a
U.S. intelligence official.

Al-Sahaf has become something of a cult figure as he continued to insist
that, as U.S. forces stormed into Iraq and raced toward Baghdad, "the
infidels" were being "slaughtered."

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