Thursday, March 10, 2005

Didja ever hear the one about ...

... the self-described former Marine who claimed that Saddam's capture, as portrayed, was a fakeup?

Some rag calling itself the National Ledger takes the story apart pretty well. I can't vouch for the site as a whole (looks pretty neoconnish offhand, and I haven't had time to dig into it), but this particular analysis is pretty sound:

1) There were few Marines in Iraq at the time of Saddam's capture.

2) The alleged former Marine doesn't seem to exist in standard locator databases under the name he's using.

3) The alleged former Marine declares that another Marine was killed in a firefight during the capture of Saddam ... but no Marines are listed as KIA in Iraq during that timeframe.

Does that mean it's not true? Well, no.

If the Marine Corps fielded a special operations force to hunt down Saddam, they wouldn't advertise it.

Some military personnel don't necessarily appear in publicly accessible locator databases (I knew some intel Marines who wouldn't even pose for class pictures at military schools ... there are MOSes in which obscurity is a virtue).

And while hiding a combat death would be difficult, it wouldn't be impossible -- if the KIA had no close family, or if that family agreed to keep a secret for purposes of national security.

Still, this one just doesn't smell right. Just because you can't believe anything the Department of Defense says, it doesn't follow that you can believe everything that everyone says about the DoD.

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