Skip to comments.Shot dead on his way to work: comic who gave Iraqis a laugh
Posted on 11/20/2006 11:27:02 PM PST by MadIvan
ONE of Iraq's best known TV satirists was shot dead on his way to work yesterday.
Waleed Hassan's Caricature show was unmissable for Iraqis seeking a release in laughter from the blood and chaos around them. He poked fun at sectarian violence, bickering politicians, the US forces and power blackouts.
In all, 21 Iraqis were killed in the country yesterday in attacks in Baghdad, Ramadi and Baqouba, police said. The bodies of 26 who had been kidnapped and tortured also were found on the streets of the capital, in Dujail to the north of Baghdad and in the Tigris River.
The attacks raised Iraq's death toll to at least 1,370 in the first 20 days of this month, well above the 1,216 who died in all of October, which was the deadliest month in Iraq since April 2005.
Mr Hassan was found in west Baghdad with three bullet wounds to the head, said the Sharkiya channel, of which Hassan was a director.
The channel, owned by a London-based Iraqi businessman, takes an independent editorial line, though many viewers see it as leaning toward minority Sunni Arab viewpoints.
"We feel we're all at risk," a senior journalist at Sharkiya said. "We all think of quitting."
Hassan's sister, Nadia Hassan Ja'az, said his death was incomprehensible. "Why did they want to kill him? He didn't hurt anyone," she said.
"He has nothing to do with Sunni or Shiite, he doesn't recognise these things. He's just an actor defending Iraq, its people and his family."
Like so many other shootings in the killing fields of Baghdad and other Iraqi cities, the identify of his attackers was not known, police said.
"He was an actor who made fun of the miserable situation in our country, not a politician. But some people don't like that, so he was assassinated to silence him," said one grieving fan, Namiq Hassan, 42, an oil ministry employee.
Waleed Hassan, a Shiite in his 40s, was one of five actors in Caricature. Iraqis weary of the tumult around them have turned to the show to watch the cast portray policemen taking bribes and government officials whose main goal in life is to line their own pockets then leave the country.
In one episode, Hassan said: "Iraqi policemen in a convoy were firing in the air in order to make their way through my neighbourhood yesterday, and they used more ammunition than the Russians did to break the siege on Stalingrad."
For fan Faris Naeem, 35, Hassan's killing was heartbreaking.
"The assassination of this actor is another sign of Iraq's chaos. The criminals who are targeting actors, athletes and other public figures want to keep the blood flowing over any sign of humanity and culture," said Mr Naeem, owner of a TV repair shop in Baghdad.
Someone must've declared a fatwa on laughter.
"Goodbye Waleed. Make God laugh."
His method must have been working....too well.
This isn't the same guy who did the Iraqi comedy show, Hurry Up, He's Dead! is it? I thought the show was filmed outside the country.
**** He poked fun at sectarian violence, bickering politicians, the US forces and power blackouts. ***
Humor is un-islamic.
the sensativity of the moment is greater than an attempted Al Frankin joke....bad me.
See if it will play in Bagdad.
It won't. But it's what the bad guys fear -- muslims getting up and saying anything they want. This festival is an interesting development.
Those who are killing innocents in Iraq don't care who they kill. Evil or Good. Insurgents or Helpers. There is a breed that only wants to kill. Take lives. Hurt not only people but nations.
Iraq will survive.
Condolences to Waleed Hassan's family and friends.
We shouldn't miss the truth in your statement.
This is tragic. Watch, very soon someone will accuse the US of the "assasination" because he made fun of the US Troops.
Michael Richards is available.
Wow. I guess laughter is a pretty itimidating sword.
Makes me think of the jihadis and their small penis complex. I guess Mr. Hassan made them feel even smaller.
My condolences to Mr. Hassan's family. Truly a sad story.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.