The whole point of a doomsday machine is lost if you keep it a secret!

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Newsweek's article about the insurgency in Iraq says that the Iraqis were preparing to fight a guerilla war before the US invaded:

By July 2002, Saddam had distributed a circular to his top leadership, warning that if and when the United States attacked, "Iraq will be defeated militarily due to the imbalance in forces," but could prevail by "dragging the U.S. military into Iraqi cities, villages and the desert and resorting to resistance tactics." By December of that year, one of his key intelligence chiefs, Gen. Taher Jalil Habush al-Tikriti, was bragging, "We'll be angry if the Americans don't come." (Al-Tikriti is now a leader of the insurgency.) A memo distributed to Saddam's secret police in January 2003, and later obtained by NEWSWEEK, assigned a series of tasks to the organized resistance, including looting and burning government buildings and sabotaging electricity and water stations.

I don't really remember hearing anything about this prior to the war, which I don't get: sure, it's great to get the US bogged down, but that doesn't mean you're eventually going to win. It would be a lot more effective to convince the US in advance that invading was too expensive. Why didn't the Iraqis publicize their resistance plans when the US was gearing up to invade? Or did they and I just missed it?

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2 Comments

You've started on the premise that a doomsday device is to be used as a deterrent. Believe it or not, there are people out there who just want to blow up the world.

You probably have more blow-the-world fans among apocalyptic millenarian evangelicals from Texas than among the mostly godless Baath party elite.

All this was well publicized ahead of the war, as well as other measures meant to increase chaos like releasing common criminals from jail and arming party militias.


The scenario that was most often brought up was deadly urban warfare with artillery and tanks positioned near civilians so that the US would have to retaliate by bombing, with severe collateral civilian casualties, and presumably worldwide outrage. Only the fact the Iraqi generals mostly surrendered without fighting (presumably as the result of US psy-ops prior to the invasion) prevented this nightmare situation.


I guess the Neocons in the Pentagon were just too busy drinking the Kool-Aid Chalabi served them about troops being welcomed with flowers strewn down their path to take these preparations seriously.

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