AMMAN – Jordanian newspaper commentators charged on Tuesday that Saddam Hussein had been “drugged” during his capture by US troops and denounced the humiliating images distributed by the US army.
“It is clear that the man was taken by surprise and that he was drugged during his capture, first with a certain gas and then he was administered a type of drug that disoriented him,” one commentator said in the Al-Dustour newspaper.
“The tough personality appears like a rat coming out of its hole and is totally submissive. This image (of Saddam) is aimed at destroying the historical image of this controversial man,” the commentator added.
Under the banner headline “the captured master” the weekly newspaper Al-Hilal questioned the “the ease” which with Saddam was captured “peacefully without one shot being fired”.
“This leads many to wonder about the possibility that the American forces used some sedative gas … before the raid,” that netted the former Iraqi president, the newspaper said.
An old picture of Saddam kissing the holy Muslim book, the Koran, accompanied the commentary written by the newspaper’s political correspondent, who noted that the ousted Iraqi leader had time to commit suicide but did not take his life.
Another Jordanian weekly newspaper, Al-Sabeel, also carried on its front page an article entitled: “Captured president Saddam surrendered of his own free will or was he drugged”.
“The United States is known for producing mind-boggling Hollywood movies that takes one’s breath away,” Al-Sabeel said.
“Maybe the film that America showed the world on the capture of the former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein is one of its most exciting productions where reality was mixed with psychological warfare,” it added.
Saddam’s eldest daughter, Raghad, now living in Jordan, had the same theory Tuesday.
“How do you believe they can capture him if they didn’t drug him? I don’t doubt it, I’m sure that they couldn’t (have captured him otherwise),” she told Al-Arabiya television by telephone.
Jordanian dailies also carried cartoons critical of the capture of Saddam.
One of them published by the Al-Dustour daily shows US President George W. Bush saying “We got Saddam. Vote for me” and next to him a US soldier saying: “And mourn for me”.
The pro-government Al Rai daily published a cartoon showing a set of cameras, their shutters sealed with tape except for one bearing the initials “USA” and a caption that reads: “One-sided story about the capture of Iraqi president Saddam Hussein”.