April 10, 2003
Fantasies Pleasant And Unpleasant

In my pleasanter moments, I like to think that Saddam Hussein will end his days as a beggar on the streets of Baghdad, protected from harm by the universal assumption that he is just an unemployed double and the real Hussein is buried in tiny pieces in his deepest bunker. A typical encounter would go something like this:

Saddam: "Bow down before me, Zionist scum! I am your absolute ruler, Saddam the Magnificent, Saddam of the hundred palaces and thousand prisons, master of germs and gases and radioactive waste, field marshal of the mighty Republican Guard! Bow down or I will order my minions to torture you and your entire family!", and so on, if not ad infinitum, certainly ad nauseam.

Passerby: "Sure, whatever you say, old man. We all know life is tough for former doubles. Who wants to hire a geezer with big glasses and no serious work experience, a guy whose face makes everyone except small children shudder? Halloween never really caught on in Iraq, the American soldiers have all gone home, and there was never much demand for ghouls the rest of the year even when they were here. I gotta admit the resemblance is truly amazing. So the stories about how the doubles all had plastic surgery are true?" (Rolling his eyes and nudging his companions) "But don't you think your impression is just a little . . . over-the-top? If you tone it down a bit you'll get more sympathy. And try to cut down on the 'evil' glare, it just looks silly. Here's a couple of nice crisp new dinars, worth 2,000 of the old dinars with 'your' picture on them. Go buy yourself another bottle of arak. Not that haven't already had plenty today, to judge by the way you talk."

Of course, in my less pleasant moments I think there's a lot to be said for putting Saddam Hussein through his own plastic shredder, feet first, with the speed set on 'low' and a half-hour break every six inches.

And in my sensible in-between moments, I think that neither fantasy comes close to doing Saddam justice, though the first would work for a Hollywood movie about some far-less-loathsome villain. This is one case where a very literal and elaborately painful form of eternal damnation is the only thing that could possibly suffice.

Posted by Dr. Weevil at April 10, 2003 01:04 AM