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US now looks for another Saddam Hussein

By Syed Atiq ul Hassan - posted Thursday, 11 January 2007

Everything went wrong in Iraq after the US-led forces invaded Iraq, except the elimination of Saddam Hussein, who was finally hanged in the green zone in the centre of Baghdad, heavily guarded by US forces in the closing hours of 2006.

The man who committed his first murder when he was only 14-years-old had always been backed by the US during his tyrant rule up until his attack on Kuwait.

Captured by US forces in December 2003, Saddam Hussein was kept alive with the vow to bring him to justice through a special Iraqi tribunal court which many believed was “flawed and unsound”. Nevertheless, Saddam’s fate was already decided by US President George Bush, who said during his interview to ABC News network’s journalist Diane Sawyer in December 2003, “Saddam Hussein deserved the ‘ultimate penalty’ when he stands trial in Iraq”.


In a television interview with John Simpson of the BBC in November 2006, Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Kamal Al-Maliki also unabashedly avowed that Hussein was to be executed before the end of 2006. In November (2006) referring to Maliki’s remarks , the New York Times wrote, “According to Iraqi court officials, nothing in Iraqi law would prevent Mr Hussein being executed before the Anfal trial ends”.

During the countdown of Saddam’s remaining days behind the bars, the situation in Iraq grew increasingly unstable.

Now many analysts are predicting that the ongoing bloody sectarian clashes between Sunni and Shia are leading to a breakup of Iraq. But would the break-up of Iraq into three or four smaller states be in the US interest? I would suggest not.

The US will not accept another independent Shia state, on the border with Iran and Syria. Nor would the US like to see any religious government take control of Iraq.

The only option for the US to protect its interests in Iraq permanently is through an Iraqi government with a pro-western single-party headed by another dictator, like Saddam. This would protect the US vested interests in Iraq and provide the US with enough relief to withdraw its more than 150,000 military personnel.

One should not forget that prior to the Gulf crisis in 1991, Saddam Hussein had been a close friend of US and his dictatorship rule was fully blessed by it.


In a statement after Saddam’s death, George Bush said the death of Saddam would not stop the sectarian violence in Iraq. It is commonsense to conclude that ongoing chaos in Iraq will provide a good excuse for the US administration to impose another tyrant leader on the people of Iraq.

The US might have wanted to keep Saddam alive until the current situation got worse when the people of Iraq would eventually have been looking for anyone who could provide them with peace. And that would have been a right time for the US to proceed for negotiation and conciliation with any other hardliner or escaped leaders of Baath Party.

On the other hand, the US administration might not bear another blow to President Bush’s decreasing public support over Iraq’s occupation: especially if Saddam Hussein had opened his mouth during his Anfal trial (a trial in which Saddam Hussein and his companions were to be accused of genocide and mass murders of at least 50,000 to 100,000 Kurds) and exposed US support for his regime in both the war against Iran and the operation against Kurds where he used chemical weapons.

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About the Author

Syed Atiq ul Hassan, is senior journalist, writer, media analyst and foreign correspondent for foreign media agencies in Australia. His email is

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