After three years of waiting for a trial to be set up and then finally for the court to reach a ruling, the news still comes as a shock. Saddam Hussein has been executed. In fact, as I watched early morning holiday television on December 30th, my mid-morning sitcom was quietly disturbed by a small line of text at the bottom of the screen. The text read, “Saddam Hussein has been executed.” That was all. Then back to the laughs.
Since October 15, 2005, Saddam has first denied the authority of the court, denounced U.S. President George W. Bush as the “real criminal” (CBC, December 29, 2006), claimed his captors were beating him (a claim disregarded by the court) and finally called for Iraqi people “not to hate” (Ibid) their U.S. invaders or any of the other nations with which Iraq has fought, since as he put it “hate does not leave space for a person to be fair” (Ibid).
It has been quite a ride for old Saddam before he got to that final retrospective and quite sane point. He was a socialist revolutionary who turned to assassination schemes in his early twenties and had to flee the country only to return when the Baathist Party gained power of Iraq. In 1979, Saddam rose to the position of President and immediately ordered the executions of several government officials who he declared were disloyal to the Party. It is all a bit 1984-ish, and in an age of Western ideals of fairness and human rights, how can it be that this man, no matter how unethical or disturbed, can be subjected to the same treatment as he has himself been on trial for?
It is just a case of revenge, at this point. Behind a banner of justice, Iraqi and American people are able to treat this man exactly the same way that he treated his people when he was President. Nobody will really kick-up a fuss because, deep down, this is how most of us think justice should work. An eye for an eye; fight fire with fire.
Nothing ever changes. Saddam was doomed right from the moment George Bush decided Saddam was an easy replacement for Osama Bin Laden as a target in the War on Terrorism. So much for the principles of Christianity.
CBC news staff (2006, December 29). Timeline of Saddam’s trials. CBC News. Retrieved from http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/iraq/timeline_saddamtrial.html