Media Matters

Go Figure

Uncle Pundit knows the real story behind the ostensible raid on Ahmed Chalabi.

By 5.27.04

"I got it figured."

Uncle Pundit is not given to snap proclamations of this type, so you listen.

"That Chalabi guy. Six weeks ago the neo-cons loved him enough to marry and now they all wanna mess in his mess kit. You know what it is? You heard of dis-information campaigns, right? When the G-2's put out a lot of phony stuff to get picked up by the opposition and they take it as the mccoy. Well, this is the same idea, but it is dis-vilification.

"Consider it. Chalabi is their guy, all right. But they know that whoever shows up in Baghdad as the Uncle Sam drummer boy hasn't got a snowball's chance in Fallujah, so they gotta dis him, bust into his tent, haul off his stuff and shoot a hole in his picture. Chalabi's stock goes up like a scud on the Iraqi market. If we hate 'im, they love 'im. What started out an imposition winds up a proposition."

Uncle Pundit has been figuring for a long time and has a reputation for getting it right, ever since that time in the '30s when he spotted an outfit called International Business Machines and persuaded the folks to put what tattered amount was left in the kitty into whatever that was.

"Those Iraqis, they hanker for the same contrary stuff we do. Tell 'em they can't have any and that's all they want. Make out that Chalabi is the sworn enemy of the G-2 Pentagon guys and they'll put him up in that square where we tore down Saddam.

"It's the same here. I saw three libs wearing big shiny lapel buttons today, saying 'Save Abu Ghraib.' You know why? 'Cause Bush wants to tear it down, that's why."

Uncle P is something of a contrarian himself, so he may "have it figured." When the weather bureau issued real tornado warnings, not alerts but warnings, for Alexandria, Virginia, and a couple of counties nearby in Maryland, he sat out on the porch and watched it rain.

"It isn't the stuff they tell you about," he said. "Like Ashcroft and the FBI guy, Mueller, trying to cover all bases with some b.s. about al Qaeda being 70 percent or maybe 90 percent ready to hit us again this summer. In some big gathering like the political conventions. They know better than to hit the Bush coronation in New York. The American sympathy vote would give him a second term for sure. Democrats in Boston? World bankers in Atlanta? Too simple. I'd worry about some place like Muncie, Indiana.

"You look puzzled. Exactly. We'd spend the rest of our lives listening to some smartasses on TV telling us why they thought all along it would be Muncie, and we'd never be the wiser.

"One last thing. The guy that could still sink Chalabi is this Brahimi. If he picks him, it is curtains. Not all the dis-vilification in the world could undo that."

Go figure.

Like this Article

Print this Article

Print Article
About the Author

Reid Collins is a former CBS and CNN news correspondent.