Tuesday, May 06, 2003

Behind the Iraq card deck
Niles Lathem in the NY Post gives some ink to the guys who thought up the ubiquitous Iraqi "most wanted" card deck:
When they first came up with the idea of putting the list of the 55 most-wanted Iraqi regime figures on a deck of playing cards, a group of obscure analysts for the Defense Intelligence Agency had no idea they were creating a media sensation.

"It was supposed to be a training tool for the soldiers in the field. We were surprised to see it on eBay and all over the media. We did not intend to create a firestorm, and we are amazed that it has gotten this cult following," one of the deck's creators, Army analyst Staff Sgt. Shawn Mahoney, told The Post.
The five are Lt. Hans Mumm, Sgt. Andrei Salter, Staff Sgt. Shawn Mahoney, Sgt. Scott Boehmler and Spc. Joseph Barrios.
All but one member of the group are Army reservists who were called up to a special Iraq task force during the war.

One member of the group is a Philadelphia cop. Another works in the marketing department of a company that manufactures robotics.
"The idea is to get these pictures out there to the troops without forcing them to read another training manual," said group member Lt. Hans Mumm.
It worked.