The Fall of Baghdad
The Hiller Instinct: The Fall of Baghdad
If every picture is worth a thousand words, then the one of Iraqis celebrating in the streets of Baghdad must be worth billions, because it symbolizes every person on Earth's hopes for freedom.
And these pictures are equally powerful: a despotic head of state has been be-headed, giving Iraqis, who've lived in slavery, a chance to live with liberty just days after Saddam Hussein appeared on the streets of Baghdad, desperately trying to prove he was still in control.
And when you look at all the pictures coming from Baghdad today, surely you know you're looking at history and your mind makes connections.
Remembering 1991 when statues of Lenin, the founder of the Soviet Union, were torn down by the same forces of freedom that brought down the statues of Saddam Hussein today.
And connecting to 1989 when the Berlin Wall fell and Germany was unified, marking the end of the Cold War and a triumph of democracy over dictatorship.
As you watch Iraqis carry American flags, you have every right to feel proud and you know it has not always been this way for the United States.
You may think of 1979, when the U.S. seemed powerless as Iran held 55 Americans hostage, and didn't release them until 1981.
Or recall our humiliating retreat from Saigon in 1975, when we failed to liberate Vietnam... and lost a war to communism.
Give President Bush his due. He has been attacked by some for rushing into this war, for failing to build a bigger coalition and, even by a general or two, for having a flawed battle plan.
But the pictures from Baghdad today say what the president pledged three weeks ago is now true…
President Bush, March 19
"We will pass through this time of peril and carry on the work of peace. We will defend our freedom. We will bring freedom to others. And we will prevail."
In the future, Americans still face danger and death in Iraq, but there is no future there for Saddam Hussein. So while this isn't the end of the war, symbolically, even surrender may not top today.