Saddam Depressed and Begging for Help?

The latest from the Political Grapevine:

Tom's Turn for an Apology?

Now that CBS (search) says it can no longer vouch for those alleged National Guard memos, Rep. Mark Foley, R-Fla. is calling on Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, to apologize for saying a week and a half ago that the memos, "showed ... the president lied to the American people in the Oval Office."

Foley says, "Dan Rather realized his mistake, and now so should Senator Harkin. ... Elected officials have a responsibility to stand behind the words they say, ... [and] Senator Harkin used vitriolic language that now should be rescinded." A call to Harkin's office was not returned.

Daddy’s Liberal Girl

One person who was not surprised that CBS News producer Mary Mapes (search) was the person behind the story based on the discredited memos is Mapes' own father. In an interview on Seattle radio station KVI this past week, 76-year-old Don Mapes said, "I'm really ashamed of what my daughter has become. She's a typical liberal."

He added, "She went into journalism with an ax to grind, and that was to promote radical feminism." Mary's step-mother, meanwhile, says, "[Don] and Mary don't really see eye to eye," and says she's, "sorry" Mary's father made those remarks.

General Information

John Kerry (search) insisted today, as he has repeatedly over the past year, that the army's former chief of staff, General Eric Shinseki, was forced into early retirement for saying in the run-up to the war in Iraq that not enough troops were set to be deployed to the region. Kerry said, Shinseki is among the administration officials who, "lost their jobs ... [for] telling the truth."

But Shinseki was not forced out, he completed his full term as chief of staff, and retired on schedule. But his successor's name leaked out a year ahead of time, which his supporters say diminished his influence in his final year.

Saddam Depressed and Begging for Help?

Former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein (search) is depressed and has begged the new interim Iraqi government for help ... that according to interim Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi. Allawi, quoted by the leading Arab newspaper Al-Hayat, says Saddam is, "distraught" and is looking to the new Iraqi government for mercy.

But, according to Allawi, Saddam still insists that he is the president of Iraq, and that he and his regime, "were working in the public interest, and did not mean any harm."

– FOX News' Michael Levine contributed to this report