First Charges Issued Against Saddam

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The first charges against [Saddam] Hussein link him to atrocities against Shia residents of Dujayl, a town north of Baghdad, where would-be assassins linked to Dawa, a Shia Islamist movement, tried to kill the former president in July 1982. About 150 men from Dujayl were executed in the government's subsequent crackdown. News of the charges came after the bloodiest single insurgent strike since Iraq's elected government came into office three months ago. A suicide attack at a petrol station next to a Shia mosque on Saturday night killed more than 70 people and wounded about 150.

Whole Financial Times story here.

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  1. Remember: when Saddam destroyed an entire village in retaliation for one or two criminals living there, it was a crime against humanity. This is NOT to be confused with the time we destroyed Fallujah because twelve criminals in the city killed four Americans. Mistreating Iraqis is only a bad thing when SADDAM does it. (When the Geneva Convention had that part about “collective punishment” being illegal, it wasn’t meant to apply to us.)

  2. I expect the defense will call Victor David Hanson.

    While his practices may appear to the weak and ahistorical as unnecessarily cruel, Saddam was actually trying to save lives by making the defeat of his enemies as overwhelming and swift as possible.

  3. No, no, no, Joe. When WE wipe out entire villages or cities, we’re doing this to save lives. Saddam’s just a scumbag. Only Americans are allowed to destroy a country in order to save it.

  4. To be fair, Bush also brought Allawi into our country to try to tip the outcome of our elections, too.

  5. Oops, wrong thread.

  6. Jennifer: If US forces intended the destruction of Fallujah, why did it use weapons and techniques far more primitive than those used by Saddam more than a decade and a half ago? With fatalities not even measuring to a thousand?

    In fact, if the destruction of Fallujah was the goal, why send Marines to engage in quite-deadly urban combat? For kicks?

    More importantly, why is there a city still named, with a population measuring in the hundreds of thousands, Fallujah?

    If US wanted collective punishment, cartographers would be rushing to erase the now nonexistant city of Fallujah from the maps.

  7. Rajan-
    The dead and homeless of Fallujah will be very comforted, if they get Internet access and read your explanation. Saddam killed about 150 in that town mentioned above. We don’t know how many Fallujans died, since the government doesn’t want anybody to know.

  8. Jennifer: “The dead and homeless of Fallujah will be very comforted, if they get Internet access and read your explanation. Saddam killed about 150 in that town mentioned above.”

    I never knew deaths caused by willing combat – in the deadiest of all battlefields – the urban battlefield, is equal to the execution of 150 men.

    If all those killed in Fallujah were just simply lined up and executed – lets say by firing range, than perhaps your comparison has some merit. They didn’t. Most killed were what the press calls “insurgents”. And they had ample opportunity to surrender weeks before the marines entered that dreaded town.

    “We don’t know how many Fallujans died, since the government doesn’t want anybody to know.”

    Rarely, if ever, does the arms forces gives out or even collects information on civilian casualities and fatalities. Not just in this battle, or in this war.

    But it is not as if we need to depend on the Marines to know how many died in Fallujah during urban combat and not mass executions – we have Iraqi hospitals, statistics etc. If you have fresh information showing US forces entered a city, arrested a couple hundred men, and then executed them en masse – then let’s talk.

  9. If you have fresh information showing US forces entered a city, arrested a couple hundred men, and then executed them en masse – then let’s talk.

    Actually, I don’t have ANY information about Iraqi casualties; the government keeps that top secret. Which is pretty funny, coming from the same government that tries to erode privacy rights for Americans, on the grounds that “only the guilty have anything to hide.”

    Most killed were what the press calls “insurgents”.

    And there’s absolutely no reason to suspect that all of the dead are labeled thusly because it sounds so much better than civilian casualties, right? Nope, nope, every single dead iraqi totally deserved it.

    And I’m sure that to the families of the dead, it makes a HUGE difference whether their loved ones were deliberately executed, or merely killed by accident when an occupying power decided to invade their city in retaliation for the deaths of four Americans. And when you go to funerals, no doubt the most commonly heard phrase is the Iraqi translation of ‘So long as it wasn’t SADDAM who killed my loved ones, I’m totally fine with this.”

    One of these days America will lose its position at the top of the world totem pole–it happens to all civilizations, sooner or later. I suppose then that we, too, will have to sit back and accept it when an occupying force invades their nation; once a powerful military invades a country the people in said country have absolutely no right to complain.

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