(1937 to ? )
Former dictator of Iraqby Rit Nosotro First Published:: 2003
Saddam Hussein was born on April 4, 1937 near Tikrit in the Saladdan Province of Iraq, about a hundred miles north of Baghdad, the capital. This region is inhabited mostly by Sunni Muslims. His brother and father, Hussein al-Majid, both died shortly before his birth. Saddam’s mother, Subha, refused to see him after his birth, and he was raised up by his uncle, Krayollah Tuflah, his mother’s brother. He grew up in the village of al-Auja, which was a small village of huts built out of mud. At the age of three, he returned to his new step-father and his mother’s new husband, Ibrahim Hussein. Saddam was cruelly tortured and abused by new step-father, and returned to his uncle at the age of ten. He was trained by his uncle and taught about the great Arab leaders. Saddam was greatly influenced by him, and his uncle’s bitterness against imperialism and Western society and culture was passed down to him. Having not gone to school in the past due to his poverty, he asked his uncle to let him go and went to a five year old’s class at age ten. Saddam was cunning and mostly self –educated.
Saddam failed to finish high school or to enroll in the prestigious Baghdad Military Academy at age sixteen due to his very poor grades. Instead, he joined the Arab Baath Socialist Party (also known as the A.S.B.P.) when he was only nineteen years of age. In 1959, a couple years after he joined, Saddam participated in an attempt to attack and assassinate Prime Minister Abdul Karim Kassim. The conspiracy was foiled, however, and the attack failed. Saddam was shot in the leg and wounded. He fled to Syria, then to Egypt, where he stayed and lived for the next four years. Saddam enrolled in the University of Cairo School/College of Law and is heavily influenced by Nassar’s Arab nationalist rhetoric. While he is in Egypt, Saddam was sentenced to death in Iraq on absentia. There, he also married his cousin, Sajida Khair Allah and they had two sons and three daughters.
Meanwhile, the back in Iraq the Baath party was re- emerging. Saddam returned to Iraq and engaged in the bloodless military coup and siege of the Presidential Palace and Prime Minister Abdul Rahman Arif. He was noticed for his skills as a torturer, which helped him move up the political ladder. Later, he organized the militia and ran the security system, and was also elected the Department Secretary General. Soon, the Baath party took power over the government. The new president, Ahmed Hassan Al-Bakr, was a relative of Saddam and was also from Tikrit, Saddam’s hometown. He appointed Saddam as the Deputy Chair of the RCC and gave him the second highest government position of the Vice President of the Iraqi Republic. As the vice-president, Saddam removed all non-Baath party members from the Iraqi government and also built a strong network of secret police.
In 1980, Saddam waged war against Iran by ignoring the 1985 Algiers Accord. He wanted to swiftly capture the Shatt Al Hrab waterway leading up to the Persian Gulf. However, the Iranian resistance was much stronger than Saddam had expected in the beginning. Instead, this “small” expedition eventually ended up in eight years of hard fighting, which ended up a stalemate. During the war, at least a million lives were lost, including about two hundred fifty thousand Iraqi military casualties. Saddam also used extensive violence, including killing Kurds with poison gas because they supported the Iranian cause.
Only a couple years later after the Iran-Iraq war, Saddam attacked and conquered the tiny sheikdom of Kuwait in 1991 over disputes of oil prices and political control of the Persian Gulf region. The United States and its allies, however, soon came to the help of Kuwait, in the six week war known as “Operation Desert Storm” or the Persian Gulf War. In this war, Saddam was badly defeated, and his country left in ruins. However, he was not killed and survived, and declared what he called “the Mother of all Battles” a victory for Iraq.
From 2000, more than 1000 Israeli civilians have been murdered under the approval of the former Yassir Arafat. A major contributor to the toll was Saddam Hussein, who gave more than $35 million to the kin of Palestinian suicide bombers in payments of $25,000 each, reports the Arab Liberation Front. An Iraqi spokesman at the time said, "[Saddam] considers this small gift to the families as just a symbol of support for those who have reached the highest degree of martyrdom."
Early in 2003, the regime of Saddam Hussein was fiercely attacked by the United States in Operation Iraqi Freedom because of the high probability that he was acquiring or hiding weapons of mass destruction (WMD’s). Thousands of Iraqi and hundreds of American troops have died in the conflict. Although the Baath regime was toppled, and at the time of this writing (Dec. 14, 2003), Saddam was captured alive, the question remains as to the impact this will have on the Iraqi resistence movement. Peace will not come through the fall of dictators. Only the God who made the universe, and redeemed it Himself through Jesus - the Prince of Peace, can bring enduring and surpassing peace to Saddam Hussein and the nation of Iraq.
Saddam's trial began in the fall of 2005 as Iraqis voted on a new constitution.
QUOTE TO NOTE: YOU NEVER KNOW
You never know what effect you're going to have when you do ....(humanitarian) things. Part of the 506th (Air Expeditionary Wing) was a medical unit, the 193rd Medical Group, who attended to two seriously wounded Iraqis who had been involved in a car accident. They responded and tended to the wounds while they were still under mortar fire. Some days later the same Iraqis came forward with some very critical information about where a certain high-ranking Iraqi official was hiding in a spider hole on a farm.
They came forward not because they hated Saddam or wanted to do Saddam in. They came forward because four medical people of our Air National Guard treated them and brought them back to health; and they gave this critical information that led to the capture of Saddam Hussein. I'm proud to say that because of this, because of these people, we are indeed the greatest Air Force on the planet.
Air Force Chief of Staff General John P. Jumper, speaking at the Air Force Association Conference, Washington, D.C., Sept. 15, 2004