The US government built him up and then tore him down. What now? We can only hope the violence doesn't spike as a result of this hasty decision to execute Saddam today. Saddam Hussein was a despicable, criminal, sadist. But to kill him now could be another tragic mistake by the blood-thirsty BushCo and almost certainly threatens the future of Iraq and its current security. This may fuel Sunni/Shiite tensions to the breaking point. Saddam was always afraid of his enemies so he "neutralized" them, a lesson learned well by his Baath Party followers and Sunnis who now see Saddam as just another Sunni "eliminated" by Americans. Its always a bad idea to corner someone, as you never know how they will react. The fat's on the fire now.
Al Jazeera reports:
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 30, 2006
6:27 MECCA TIME, 3:27 GMT
NEWS MIDDLE EAST
Saddam reported hanged
Saddam maintained during his trial that he was still Iraq’s rightful president [EPA]
Saddam Hussein, the former Iraqi president, has been hanged, according to a television station in the region.
Reports on Al Hurra, a US-backed station, said that Saddam was executed shortly before 6am (03:00 GMT) on Saturday.
The former Iraqi president, who was ousted in April 2003 by a US-led invasion, was convicted last month of crimes against humanity over the killings of 148 Shia villagers from Dujail after a failed assassination attempt in 1982.
An appeals court upheld the death penalty on Tuesday and the Iraqi government rushed through the procedures to hang him by the end of the year and before the Eid al-Adha holiday that starts on Saturday.
The government had kept details of its plans shrouded in secrecy amid concerns that it may provoke a violent backlash from his former supporters with Iraq on the brink of civil war. (more)
I'm adding to this a reprise of last night's post from Riverbend, the Iraqi woman who writes with such passion and depth. Riverbend Post, December 29. 2006 Read this. The perspective is invaluable.
And finally courtesy of Nate at Get in their Face we have the Saddam Retrospective.