A Nurse with a Gun

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Something Every American Should See

This statue currently stands outside the Iraqi palace, now home to the 4th Infantry division. It will eventually be shipped home and put in the memorial museum in Fort Hood, Texas. The statue was created by an Iraqi artist named Kalat, who for years was forced by Saddam Hussein to make the many hundreds of bronze busts of Saddam that dotted Baghdad.

Kalat was so grateful for the Americans liberation of his country; he melted 3 of the heads of the fallen Saddam and made the statue as a memorial to the American soldiers and their fallen warriors. Kalat worked on this memorial night and day for several months.

To the left of the kneeling soldier is a small Iraqi girl giving the soldier comfort as he mourns the loss of his comrade in arms.

This story is disputed by Snopes.

Version 2

This statue currently stands outside the Iraqi palace, now home to the 4th Infantry division in Fort Hood Texas. It will eventually be already was shipped home and put in the memorial museum in Fort Hood, Texas. The statue was created by an Iraqi artist named Kalat Khalid Alussy (whose first name is also rendered in English as 'Kalat'), who for years was forced by Saddam Hussein to make the many hundreds of bronze busts of Saddam that dotted Baghdad was given commissions he could not refuse by Saddam Hussien. "I made the statues of Saddam — even though I didn't want to — because I needed money for my family and to finish my education," he says, reclining in a room decorated with several of his paintings. "And I decided to make statues for the Americans for the exact same reasons."

Kalat, a starving artist with his only patron hiding in a spiderhole, was so grateful for the Americans liberation of his country needing money so badly; he melted 3 of the heads of the fallen Saddam and made the statue as a memorial to the American soldiers and their fallen warriors for $18,000. Kalat worked on this memorial night and day for several months.

To the left of the kneeling soldier is a small Iraqi girl giving the soldier comfort as he mourns the loss of his comrade in arms. As the work neared completion, Sgt. Fuss and the division's commander, Maj. Gen. Ray Odierno, decided it needed a clearer connection to Iraq. The general suggested adding a small child to symbolize Iraq's new future, Sgt. Fuss says. When they told the artist they wanted another statue, Mr. Alussy demanded $10,000 more. "He learned capitalism real fast," Sgt. Fuss says.

In February 2004 the work was flown to the 4th Infantry Division Museum at Fort Hood, Texas.

So where does this leave us? As long as we do not see statues of George Bush on horseback in Tikrit, I think we are still ahead of the game.

Hat tip to Gray Eagle
Hat tip to Standard Mischief
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4 Comments:

Anonymous Standard Mischief said...

Nice statue. Here is the snopes page that disagrees with the story on the Army News Service a bit.

http://www.snopes.com/photos/military/kalat.asp

6:10 PM  
Blogger Xavier said...

Somehow, I am not surprised at the opinions voiced in Snopes. The US military would not have accepted such a work from a Iraqi national without payment, and the fact that they commissioned it does not diminish the work. the sculptor could have refused the commission. what is lost on Barbara and David P. Mikkelson is that under Saddam's rule, a commission could not be refused. They, and Yochi J Dreazen fail to note that tidbit.

7:30 PM  
Blogger Xavier said...

I've updated the post. thanks SM! It's a bit more interesting now.

8:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My daughter Corinna's kindergarten picture was used as a model for the little girl. My husband was the HHC company comander and provided her picture after the artist requested a picture of a little girl.

9:53 PM  

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