Tim Belford: Short Takes On Life
Tim Belford
Tim Belford
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Tim Belford is host of Quebec A.M. -- CBC Radio's popular English- language morning show (91.7 FM, 6-9, Mon.-Fri). He also is said to know a thing or three about wine.

Posted 12.19.01
Quebec City


On getting Saddam, that old softy

Well, they got Saddam.

Wasn't he a sorry sight?

The guy looked like a pudgy Tom Hanks from the movie "Castaway."

All he needed was a basketball with Comical Ali's face on it to talk to and the image was spot on.

I don't know about you but I wasn't surprised Saddam came to his end as T. S. Eliot said, "not with a bang but a whimper."

Like most bullies, Saddam, when someone finally stood up to him, couldn't throw in the towel fast enough.

What I did find fascinating was what they found in his make-shift lodgings.

You know that game people often play at parties, the one when you're asked what you would take to a desert island if you were marooned?

Saddam would make a fascinating player.

Here he is in the middle of Iraq's version of Death Valley and what has he got in the fridge?

A package of hotdogs!

What was he planning? A barbecue for the neighbours? No mention of buns either, or mustard or relish.

The guy obviously also has a sweet tooth.

There were Mars bars, Bounty bars, a box of Belgian chocolates, and a can of 7-up.

Maybe that explains his erratic behaviour as a ruler. The guy was probably on a twenty-year sugar high.

Despite his disheveled appearance however, he was obviously concerned with personal hygiene.

His supplies included mouthwash, q-tips, and bars of soap.

He apparently also had a mother like most of us because he had clean boxer shorts.

You know what Mom said, "What if you're in a car accident and end up in the hospital? What will people think?"

Or in his case, "What if your taken alive and end up in Guantanamo? What will George think?"

You also have to wonder about his cultural bent.

On one wall was a painting of Noah's ark - which the Americans immediately seized as possible evidence of a vessel of mass destruction.

On another wall he had some dried sausages above which was the phrase, "Praise be to God the most merciful."

But the really bizarre thing was the painting of the "Last Supper" on the outside wall of his hut.

It was accompanied by a painting of the "Madonna and Child" with an English inscription, "God bless our home."

Maybe Saddam was just an old softy after all?

Yeah, right.