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Saddam Hussein executed


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Saddam Hussein, the shotgun-waving dictator who ruled Iraq with a remorseless brutality for a quarter-century and was driven from power by a U.S.-led war that left his country in shambles, was taken to the gallows and executed Saturday, Iraqi state-run television reported.

It was a grim end for the 69-year-old leader who had vexed three U.S. presidents. Despite his ouster, Washington, its allies and the new Iraqi leaders remain mired in a fight to quell a stubborn insurgency by Saddam loyalists and a vicious sectarian conflict.

Also hanged were Saddam's half-brother Barzan Ibrahim and Awad Hamed al-Bandar, the former chief justice of the Revolutionary Court. State-run Iraqiya television news announcer said "criminal Saddam was hanged to death and the execution started with criminal Saddam then Barzan then Awad al-Bandar."

Mariam al-Rayes, a legal expert and a former member of the Shiite bloc in parliament, told Iraqiya television that the execution "was filmed and God willing it will be shown. There was one camera present, and a doctor was also present there."

Al-Rayes, an ally of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, did not attend the execution. She said Al-Maliki did not attend but was represented by an aide.

The station earlier was airing national songs after the first announcement and had a tag on the screen that read "Saddam's execution marks the end of a dark period of Iraq's history."

The execution came 56 days after a court convicted Saddam and sentenced him to death for his role in the killings of 148 Shiite Muslims from a town where assassins tried to kill the dictator in 1982. Iraq's highest court rejected Saddam's appeal Monday and ordered him executed within 30 days.

A U.S. judge on Friday refused to stop Saddam's execution, rejecting a last-minute court challenge.

Al-Maliki had rejected calls that Saddam be spared, telling families of people killed during the dictator's rule that would be an insult to the victims.

"Our respect for human rights requires us to execute him, and there will be no review or delay in carrying out the sentence," al-Maliki's office quoted him as saying during a meeting with relatives before the hanging.

The hanging of Saddam, who was ruthless in ordering executions of his opponents, will keep other Iraqis from pursuing justice against the ousted leader.

At his death, he was in the midst of a second trial, charged with genocide and other crimes for a 1987-88 military crackdown that killed an estimated 180,000 Kurds in northern Iraq. Experts said the trial of his co-defendants was likely to continue despite his execution.

Many people in Iraq's Shiite majority were eager to see the execution of a man whose Sunni Arab-dominated regime oppressed them and Kurds.

Before the hanging, a mosque preacher in the Shiite holy city of Najaf on Friday called Saddam's execution "God's gift to Iraqis."

"Oh, God, you know what Saddam has done! He killed millions of Iraqis in prisons, in wars with neighboring countries and he is responsible for mass graves. Oh God, we ask you to take revenge on Saddam," said Sheik Sadralddin al-Qubanji, a member of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq.

On Thursday, two half brothers visited Saddam in his cell, a member of the former dictator's defense team, Badee Izzat Aref, told The Associated Press by telephone from the United Arab Emirates. He said the former dictator handed them his personal belongings.

A senior official at the Iraqi defense ministry said Saddam gave his will to one of his half brothers. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

In a farewell message to Iraqis posted Wednesday on the Internet, Saddam said he was giving his life for his country as part of the struggle against the U.S. "Here, I offer my soul to God as a sacrifice, and if he wants, he will send it to heaven with the martyrs," he said.

One of Saddam's lawyers, Issam Ghazzawi, said the letter was written by Saddam on Nov. 5, the day he was convicted by an Iraqi tribunal in the Dujail killings.

The message called on Iraqis to put aside the sectarian hatred that has bloodied their nation for a year and voiced support for the Sunni Arab-dominated insurgency against U.S.-led forces, saying: "Long live jihad and the mujahedeen."

Saddam urged Iraqis to rely on God's help in fighting "against the unjust nations" that ousted his regime.

Najeeb al-Nauimi, a member of Saddam's legal team, said U.S. authorities maintained physical custody of Saddam until the execution to prevent him being humiliated publicly or his corpse being mutilated, as has happened to previous Iraqi leaders deposed by force. He said they didn't want anything to happen to further inflame Sunni Arabs.

"This is the end of an era in Iraq," al-Nauimi said from Doha, Qatar. "The Baath regime ruled for 35 years. Saddam was vice president or president of Iraq during those years. For Iraqis, he will be very well remembered. Like a martyr, he died for the sake of his country."

Iraq's death penalty was suspended by the U.S. military after it toppled Saddam in 2003, but the new Iraqi government reinstated it two years later, saying executions would deter criminals.

Saddam's own regime used executions and extrajudicial killings as a tool of political repression, both to eliminate real or suspected political opponents and to maintain a reign of terror.

In the months after he seized power on July 16, 1979, he had hundreds of members of his own party and army officers slain. In 1996, he ordered the slaying of two sons-in-law who had defected to Jordan but returned to Baghdad after receiving guarantees of safety.

Saddam built Iraq into a one of the Arab world's most modern societies, but then plunged the country into an eight-year war with neighboring Iran that killed hundreds of thousands of people on both sides and wrecked Iraq's economy.

During that war, as part of the wider campaign against Kurds, the Iraqi military used chemical weapons against the Kurdish town of Halabja in northern Iraq, killing an estimated 5,000 civilians.

The economic troubles from the Iran war led Saddam to invade Kuwait in the summer of 1990, seeking to grab its oil wealth, but a U.S.-led coalition inflicted a stinging defeat on the Iraq army and freed the Kuwaitis.

U.N. sanctions imposed over the Kuwait invasion remained in place when Saddam failed to cooperate fully in international efforts to ensure his programs for creating weapons of mass destruction had been dismantled. Iraqis, once among the region's most prosperous, were impoverished.

The final blow came when U.S.-led troops invaded in March 2003. Saddam's regime fell quickly, but political, sectarian and criminal violence have created chaos that has undermined efforts to rebuild Iraq's ruined economy.

While he wielded a heavy hand to maintain control, Saddam also sought to win public support with a personality cult that pervaded Iraqi society. Thousands of portraits, posters, statues and murals were erected in his honor all over Iraq. His face could be seen on the sides of office buildings, schools, airports and shops and on Iraq's currency.

Source: Yahoo! News

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you cannot be happy coz a man died?!!? even such evil one... we all have our twisted side. wat if 1 of us had such power? with the education he received. this wont bring any good to the world, neither 2 one of us... may he be judged only by God... same for any1 who passed away or will pass away. isolate them from society so they cannot do evil anylonger, kill them? why?

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him being alive or dead, doesn't and won't solve any problems the U.S already caused. America won't win this battle, or war - they attacked the wrong place for many wrong reasons. Now we are only finding good reasons being there. If you think this serves America or anybody else some kind of victory, you are so misguided.

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Agreed with Kiddo, tho I think Iraq is better off without Saddam.

I 2nd that, Saddam caused the death of a hell of alotta people and he paid for it.

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If you asked someone in Iraq, if they were well off with Saddam or with the new regime... I am not sure if the majority will say "the new regime"

Not justifying Saddams actions... he was a dictator and he misused his power quite a lot.

People are just finding out how difficult it is to govern the country now without him...

But for me Saddam alive or dead means nothing...

Doesnt matter if the trial was not handled well... if he was not given a chance to defend himself... the fact is ..he was guilty.. without doubt...

Bcoz I love conspiracies... I am tempted to belive that he may be still alive

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boulder omen

there is also a discrepancy in that report, only saddam was hung, no one else was hung besides saddam.

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I 2nd that, Saddam caused the death of a hell of alotta people and he paid for it.

So you think Bush should be executed also, because he caused the death of many people in the last wars?

Wake up man.

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you cannot be happy coz a man died?!!? even such evil one... we all have our twisted side. wat if 1 of us had such power? with the education he received. this wont bring any good to the world, neither 2 one of us... may he be judged only by God... same for any1 who passed away or will pass away. isolate them from society so they cannot do evil anylonger, kill them? why?

I'm not here to force my point upon you. But merely answer your questions. I think it what Saddam should have received, its like the saying "What you sow, is what you Reap." In this case Saddam had it comming to him, for all his mass murders and genocides he has preformed not only on the Kurds but people he has killed to get what he wanted. All these ruthless murders this man has produced, even killing over "One Million" people during his regime, which is also includes his own country men. In a way he set himself in a death sentence. Many people lost their lives, which includes innocent women, children, and husbands that he used as pawns for the benefit of himself. Many people are rejoicing in the streets that he is dead. Just a little food for thought, but how would you feel if you children, husband or wife died after many years together. I'm not disagreeing with you either, he should be judged by God, but here he is judged on what he has done and what should be done for his major punishment. We aren't talking about armed robbery or a little homicide, we are talking about hundreds and thousands of people this man killed through his power. And yes if we did have that kind of power, some might turn out like him, and some would not. By how you worded you sentence you made it seem like all people would rule in an unjust way, which would make you wrong, since how do you not know for a fact that they would or would not. Thats why I said that some would and some wouldn't rule like Saddam did. But at the end of all this, this is just my opinion based on many who had the same thought as you and hopefully you can realize what this man has done.

Based on what you wrote, mi guessing that ur not a person that believes that killing another man would solve the problem. Which I agree to you, ONLY under circumstances. But in his case, he was just building himself up for this, and for a guaranteed fact, as he contemplated about what happened in his jail cell, room or etc. , he knew he would die.

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Thunder-GOLD

I 2nd that, Saddam caused the death of a hell of alotta people and he paid for it.

So you think Bush should be executed also, because he caused the death of many people in the last wars?

Wake up man.

Do you think that Bush is an angel? For me he's other assassin with power. he send troops easily because he's not one of those soldiers who will be there trying to survive. For him any excuse is enough to bombing any place in this world and killing innocent persons. he calls it "colateral damages" but when someone attack him then he calls it :"Terrorism". very ironic. Now he wants to send more soldiers. wtf he's is killing his own folks. Be neutral when someone say anything about Bush It isn't against the American people. It is against him personally

I agree Saddam was a assassin without no mercy in his soul. But Bush is wood of the same Tree.

Let's Wake up

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I 2nd that, Saddam caused the death of a hell of alotta people and he paid for it.

So you think Bush should be executed also, because he caused the death of many people in the last wars?

Wake up man.

Do you think that Bush is an angel? For me he's other assassin with power. he send troops easily because he's not one of those soldiers who will be there trying to survive. For him any excuse is enough to bombing any place in this world and killing innocent persons. he calls it "colateral damages" but when someone attack him then he calls it :"Terrorism". very ironic. Now he wants to send more soldiers. wtf he's is killing his own folks. Be neutral when someone say anything about Bush It isn't against the American people. It is against him personally

I agree Saddam was a assassin without no mercy in his soul. But Bush is wood of the same Tree.

Let's Wake up

your telling me this, ok. Well... lets see, Saddam is different, he killed innocent people. Bush, doesnt kill innocent people. Iraqis are thanking the USA for killing Saddam, now more peace, and a new goverment shall be put up now. When yo say he is killing his own folks, ok Saddam was doing the same thing too since he started. And plus, in WAR, PEOPLE DIE. In the USA you volunteer to become a part of the Army. So when the soldiers were sent to iraq, it was their own choice. You see now. That is why we have to thank the troops for protecting America.

ITS WAR = DEATHS

NOT WAR = NO DEATHS

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your telling me this, ok. Well... lets see, Saddam is different, he killed innocent people. Bush, doesnt kill innocent people. Iraqis are thanking the USA for killing Saddam, now more peace, and a new goverment shall be put up now. When yo say he is killing his own folks, ok Saddam was doing the same thing too since he started. And plus, in WAR, PEOPLE DIE. In the USA you volunteer to become a part of the Army. So when the soldiers were sent to iraq, it was their own choice. You see now. That is why we have to thank the troops for protecting America.

ITS WAR = DEATHS

NOT WAR = NO DEATHS

Do u know how many pplz were killed during Saddam's regime and the now (after the war) ?

There is a HUGE difference... So whats the purpose served..

Bush went to war for so called DEMOCRACY... Chemical weapons ... Biological weapons ...

What came out of it ... none of the above... now if someone calls the government there as DEMOCRATIC then one would be in an illusion..

If Bush wants, he can spread democracy in Africa... spend the money(spent in war) in aids to African nations.. but is he interested.. :lol:

I guess one of the American Presidents spoke of something in the lines "we have to go to war not because we want to, but bcoz we have to"

And Iraq war was not a war which US had to fight...

WAR = DEATHS

NO WAR = NO DEATHS

Preventing WAR I guess would be a better option :lol:

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your telling me this, ok. Well... lets see, Saddam is different, he killed innocent people. Bush, doesnt kill innocent people. Iraqis are thanking the USA for killing Saddam, now more peace, and a new goverment shall be put up now. When yo say he is killing his own folks, ok Saddam was doing the same thing too since he started. And plus, in WAR, PEOPLE DIE. In the USA you volunteer to become a part of the Army. So when the soldiers were sent to iraq, it was their own choice. You see now. That is why we have to thank the troops for protecting America.

ITS WAR = DEATHS

NOT WAR = NO DEATHS

Do u know how many pplz were killed during Saddam's regime and the now (after the war) ?

There is a HUGE difference... So whats the purpose served..

Bush went to war for so called DEMOCRACY... Chemical weapons ... Biological weapons ...

What came out of it ... none of the above... now if someone calls the government there as DEMOCRATIC then one would be in an illusion..

If Bush wants, he can spread democracy in Africa... spend the money(spent in war) in aids to African nations.. but is he interested.. :lol:

I guess one of the American Presidents spoke of something in the lines "we have to go to war not because we want to, but bcoz we have to"

And Iraq war was not a war which US had to fight...

WAR = DEATHS

NO WAR = NO DEATHS

Preventing WAR I guess would be a better option :lol:

EXACTLY

You said it PERFECTLY and I AGREE

that is my point, it is that I think, that is that I comment

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