Monday, April 04, 2005

Rumors

"He is my neighbor; we were raised &went to
school together. And now we
work together at Baghdad airport. After the 9th
April 2003, Baghdad airport
administration was transferred to a downtown
building. In our daily paperwork we
need lot of files which were left in the
main building at the airport. So my
friend, mentioned above, was given an ID
card by the Americans who control
Baghdad airport zone. The ID permits him
to use his private car to shuttle the
files back & forth from the
airport to the downtown building.One day on his
way back to Baghdad, he
noticed that the car engine was not functioning
properly. He pulled off
& left the car to fetch a mechanic. As he walked
tens of meters away
from the car, it exploded. He returned back to the scene,
shouting &
wailing, declaring that the car was his. He was jailed by the
Americans and,
later, transferred to an Iraqi police station. And I'm ready to
take you to
meet him so you can hear the full story."

I was listening to the storyteller carefully & many questions started to accumulate in my mind. I asked:
-Was the car working properly when he went to the airport?
-Yes, of course.
-Where did he park it?
-At a car park.
-What kind of car park?
-A park prepared & guarded by the American troops.
-Is there any possibility that somebody sneaked to the park & put a bomb in the car?
-No, impossible, since the park is well fenced & guarded by the Americans.

The story leads the hearer to a conclusion says that the Americans put the bomb in the car. For me, it is a very strange story & it reminded me of lot of such stories during Saddam's period. But referring to the car owner as 'my neighbor' & ' raised &went to school together', kept me puzzled. So I asked more questions to assure myself that the Americans did such deed. Additional information, I got from the speaker, says that the place where the car exploded was a Shia party. Strange!!!

Later on, I was retelling the story to a friend, showing my doubt about it, when he surprised me "Oh, don't pay attention to such rumors. There are many others about the same idea. Do you want to hear another one?"
"Yes, please" I replied anxiously.
"Two farmers were driving their pickup truck to the market. It was loaded with lettuce. An American checkpoint stopped them; the soldiers asked them to leave the truck & detained them for an hour. After that the Americans released them & the two men took their truck. Little while after leaving the checkpoint, the following conversation took place between them:
-The lettuce is not arranged properly.
-Yes, I think the soldiers searched the truck.
-Pull over, I don't trust the Americans.

So they stopped & started to rearrange the lettuce. On unloading the truck, they discovered two time bombs had been set up to explode. They hurried to the Iraqi police who dismantled the bombs."

The second rumor relieved me!! Because it assured my hunch that these stories are the same silly ones of Saddam's secret service. On many occasions, during Saddam's time, we heard such ridiculous stories which tried to justify the crimes Saddam used to do. One of those occasions was to justify killing the minister of health by Saddam. The story said that the minister had given his approval for a deadly drug. The truth was that the minister had asked Saddam to resign to stop the war with Iran. Another incident when he ordered to cut the hands of several currency dealers whom President Bush received recently at the white house.

It seems that Saddam's secret service (Mukhabrat) is still active nowadays & trying to launch a propaganda campaign to push away from them the accusations of killing Iraqis in large numbers. But accusing the Americans is inexplicable.

10 Comments:

Blogger Rosemary said...

This is remarkable! Do you understand how much trouble any soldier would be in if he did anything like this? The Army would put him in jail and throw away the key! It is good to know that you have good common sense. Thank you, and have a good day.

2:04 PM  
Blogger WC said...

Ibn,

Rumors. Rumors. Like you say, they have a certain smell. Always verify news sources and try to establish by your own veracity what sources are consistently accurate. As for gauging the liklihood of a rumor's truthfullness, one rule of thumb is to "Follow the Money". In this case, there is no profit in it for Americans in general (the sooner out of Iraq the sooner we can spend all the billions on something else). Of course, you can always dream up some crazy way that certain individuals can profit, but I think it obvious that the Baathists and the Jihadis are the only ones that really profit from sowing chaos in your country.

Happy Trails,
WC

3:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ibn, it's such a shame that all that creativity can't be channeled toward something more useful to society. Thanks for the post.
Jan

8:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This type of thing has happened before.

I lived in Denmark for a year and learned about the Nazi German occupation of Denmark during the Second World War.

The Nazis referred to their occupation of Denmark as "the model protectorate." Nonetheless, as the war went on, resistance in Denmark started and then increased. The Nazi policy was to execute 10 or 100 hostages for each German killed, so the resistance generally avoided killing Germans. They concentrated on sabotaging, often with explosives, facilities that helped the Nazi war effort. Examples are railroads and factories that had contracts to produce materiel for the Nazis. They generally avoided injuring either Danes or Germans.

The Nazis tried to discredit the resistance. They recruited groups of Danish criminals and had them sabotage places that were dear to most Danes. Examples were a concert hall in Copenhagen and the headquarters office building of the Danish East India Company. These targets were so unrelated to the genuine activities of the Danish resistance that no one blamed the resistance. The Nazi scheme backfired and just added to hatred of the Nazis.

I hope most Iraqis will not be deceived. I notice, however, that there is a strong tendency among Iraqi bloggers who opposed the occupation and who oppose the Iraqi government. Whenever anything happens that tends to discredit the insurgency, the preferred response of these Iraqis is not that of American partisans. Americans in that situation would either deny or minimize the discreditable behavior or they would attempt to justify it. These Iraqis more often present convoluted explanations claiming that the US secretly did the deeds!
Michael in Framingham

Michael in Framingham

7:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The terrorists have discredited themselves with the Iraqi people due to killing Iraqis. They know it will eventually destroy them. An insurgency has to either have more people than the security forces OR the support of the people to win.

They know this...and hence the desperate attempt to pretend they are not the bad guys. This is also the reason for the attacks on Abu Gharib....hoping that all the world's media would show the old atrocities. There is another rumor they have started in the last few days. Expect this to go on.

9:30 PM  
Anonymous Ken Leander, Austin.Texas said...

Guys,

'Ibn' isn't a first name. It means 'son of'.

'Ab' means 'slave of'

'dullah' means 'God'

'Abdullah' means 'slave of God'

Anyway, you get the idea. Most people that post from the ME will use an annonomous name for obvious reasons. They also use similar unidentifiable identification in their daily lives. It's that dangerous over there. It's kind of like being stuck in an AOL chat room for life.

Annonomity is the cornerstone of rumors, deceit, and slander.

Honesty is the best policy.

9:36 PM  
Anonymous Andrew (Cairo, Egypt) said...

Ken,

A small technical note. "Slave" is "abd", not "ab" (which means "father"), and "God" is "Allah".

Abdallah literally means "slave of God" but it is also a proper first name, entered on the birth certificates of Arab Muslims as well as some Christians.

In this case, signing a posting with "Abdallah" is no more anonymous than me signing this post with "Andrew" (which technically means "manly", according to the baby names books, but I am not attempting to hide behind a mask of anonymous masculinity). :)

Cheers,

Andrew (Manly, or at least I hope so!)
Cairo, Egypt

2:18 AM  
Blogger dcat said...

IBN,

Saddams stooges ok that explains everything!

Oh so they are the ones that sent that email to Seattle telling us of a threat at the end of April. I thought it was France! Or the UN! :)

7:15 PM  
Blogger Gadfly said...

Hey Ibn,

I just read a story from the Knight Ridder news service. They were saying that many Kurds are making political moves as if they were trying to break away and form their own Kurdistan, which would cause a civil war. Is this true? Or was this story blown out of proportion?

Thank you for all that you do to help keep us informed.

1:46 AM  
Blogger Omni said...

"As for gauging the liklihood of a rumor's truthfullness, one rule of thumb is to "Follow the Money". In this case, there is no profit in it for Americans in general"

Very good reasoning!! What amazing rumors...

9:23 AM  

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