On the tape, Hussein acknowledged the death of his sons Uday and Qusay Hussein and called their deaths "good news" – which is more than the Democrats have said. He thanked God for his sons' "martyrdom." Indeed, Hussein said that even if he had 100 other children, he "would offer them the same path." Apparently the alluring path of martyrdom is not one Saddam is choosing for himself.Hussein praised his sons for putting up a brave fight, noting that U.S. forces had surrounded their compound with advanced weaponry, ground troops and warplanes. In case that didn't work, U.S. forces were prepared to tell Janet Reno that a small Cuban boy was inside the house.
In other terror news, the government issued a warning to the airlines this week about terrorist attacks on commercial aircraft being planned before the end of the summer. Al-Qaida has apparently sized up the new security measures put into place by Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta and has discovered some areas of vulnerability. Among the weaknesses the terrorists hope to exploit is the fact that airlines are prohibited from looking for Arab terrorists.
The memo sent out by the Department of Homeland Security says groups of as few as five terrorists might try to seize planes for suicide missions soon after takeoff or right before landing. As the warning explains: "The hijackers may try to calm passengers and make them believe they were on a hostage, not suicide, mission." Norman Mineta sent out an emergency follow-up memo warning airlines not to make assumptions about whether hijackers really want to fly to Cuba based solely on their Arab appearance.
The Bush administration's warning to the airlines apparently stems from the psychological makeup of conservatives. The conservative psyche was recently plumbed by some top researchers from the University of California at Berkeley, Stanford University and the University of Maryland at College Park. (Profiling conservatives is OK, just not Arab terrorists.)
According to the study, "terror management" is among "the common psychological factors linked to political conservatism." This feature, we learn, "can be seen in post-Sept. 11 America, where many people appear to shun and even punish outsiders and those who threaten the status of cherished worldviews."