May 11, 2006

The Zarqawi Bloopers: Leaving It To The Professionals


The BAG has been wondering about the marketing strategy behind the Zarqawi outtakes — especially with the footage now branded the “Zarqawi Blooper Video.”  Iraq seemed the likely audience for the material — especially, those potential terrorist recruits.  Because it was pitched primarily to U.S. media, however, it became equally positioned for domestic consumption.

As presented by Multinational Forces Major General Rick Lynch, basically four charges are drawn from the outtakes:

1.)  Zarqawi can hardly operate a weapon without help.


2.) “The evil one’s” associates don’t know enough to avoid grabbing the hot end of a gun and burning themselves.



3.)  The enemy leader rides around in a white pickup.  (Just above.)

4.) Zarqawi wears New Balance sneakers under his black uniform.


But, let’s think about these points a bit.

If your goal is to shame this guy before the folks back home, that’s one thing.  But if you’re also pitching Peoria that Zarqawi is an amateur, where does that get you?  If you convince people AZ and his cohorts are essentially lame, won’t people wonder why we are making such a big deal out of him — and why he’s still on the lam?  On the other hand, if he isn’t so incompetent  (who says the CEO of Caterpillar should be able to operate a tractor, anyway?), why turn him into Groucho for the folks at home?

And just a little friendly blogospheric feedback to the Major General:

You make an innuendo out of Zarqawi’s use of a white pick-up.  But don’t outlaw terrorists all ride around in pick-ups these days?  So, what’s the issue?  Is it the color?  You were expected a camel, maybe?

And then, you bust Zarqawi for wearing fancy Western tennis shoes.  If you go back and look, however, you’ll see the “Z-man” is clearly sporting the tennies in his own video, too.


Anyway, I don’t get #3 and #4.  I thought you guys stopped attending “stereotype school.” 

But you know what confuses The BAG even more, though?

If you watch the DOD briefing, you do your soldierly best with this assignment.  You even show a wry home-spun sarcasm.  But, if your intention here was true parody, why didn’t you ship this material straight to fake news, and let some real professionals take care of it?


Zarqawi Blooper Video (YourTube) here

Full Pentagon briefing with Zarkawi outtakes (Google Video)

Original Zarqawi video (

(images: Department of Defense video.  May 4, 2006.  Photomontage by BAGnewsNotes.)

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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