Execution Brings Closure
As Saddam Hussein walked to the gallows with the spectators’ shouts of ‘Go to Hell!’ in his ears, I cannot help but wonder what was going through his mind. The Iraqi National Security Advisor, Mouwafak al-Rubaie, described Hussein as ‘very, very, very broken’ when the 69-year-old ex-dictator muttered his last words. However, is Saddam’s brokenness comparable to the destruction he plagued upon his country? Moreover, is his death the end of the destruction or fuel for its fire?
Imagine your family sitting around the TV, enjoying a few relaxing hours after a full day’s work. Now imagine strange men breaking down your door, walking into your house, taking your father and brothers to the backyard and shooting them right in front of your eyes. Now imagine walking on Ring Road on your way to class and suddenly being surrounded by mustard gas. Your skin begins to blister and just before you go blind from the burning and swelling, you see the blood you just coughed up from your blistered lungs. This nightmare was an unfortunate reality to thousands of Kurds whom Hussein gassed in the 1980s. What’s worse is that these mortifying images are just two of many scenarios that thousands of Iraqi citizens had to endure under Hussein’s regime.
Unfortunately, even after committing such hideous acts, Hussein still has a large group of followers who now call him a martyr and claim he ‘has died the death of a holy warrior.