The Trial of Saddam Hussein and The Fallout of The War

The Trial of Saddam Hussein


The fallout in the Middle East from the regime change in Iraq

Friday, July 22, 2005

Saddam's Video

Saddam Hussein has appeared in a video lambasting Iraq's new government, and complaining about his lack of access to a lawyer as he waits to be tried for war crimes.

In the video, Saddam is seen to ask for his attorney and criticises his inability to see the lawyer before trial.


"By law, a lawyer should be with the defendant. Is it fair that the lawyer cannot see the defendant except in court sessions?"

Rather ironic that the former dictator now falls back on the rule of law.

The video was broadcast on Al-Arabiya TV, then also released to CNN, and shows a hearing that took place with Saddam Hussein on 21 July.

Saddam's attorneys have said that he should not be tried for anything, because he is immune to all charges under the Iraqi constitution as it was written under his rule.

Well that would be the case wouldn't it?

I doubt very much that that line of argument will hold much water with the prosecuting authorities.

In the video, Saddam appears defiant yet frail and tired.

The official presiding over the session explains to him that it was a hearing, and that he was in the custody of the Iraqi government.

Saddam asks:

"Which government?"


"I am detained and this is a game. ... I am detained by the Iraqi government, which is appointed by the Americans."

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Nine Expelled From Tribunal

Nine staff members of the Iraqi Special Tribunal, preparing to try Saddam Hussein, have been dismissed because of their links to the Baath Party.

There are also another 19 cases reportedly under review.

A system of De-Baathification, similar to the De-Nazification of Germany, is being employed in Iraq.

The executive director of the Supreme National Commission for de-Baathification, Ali al-Lami, said that the nine held administrative jobs such as; the witness security protection program and tribunal security.

Amongst the remaining 19 being considered for expulsion are a number of judges, including chief judge Raid Juhi.

The head of the government committee in charge of purging former Baath officials is Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Chalabi, he was once a Pentagon favorite.

His spokesman, Entifadh Qanbar, is quoted as saying:

"We believe that many Baathists have infiltrated the special tribunal and they should be dismissed. The reasons behind the delay in the trial of Saddam is the presence of Baathists in the special tribunal, and they represent an obstacle to the trial of the former regime members."

The need for speed in bringing Saddam Hussein to trial is now keenly felt. The longer the delay goes on, the worse the situation in respect of the body count becomes as Iraq lurches towards civil war.

The trial is being seen as a palliative for Iraq's ills.

To my view, a more effective palliative would have been an effective, efficient and well thought through reconstruction programme in the aftermath of the "regime change" operation.

However, as the people of Iraq and the rest of the world are now learning to their cost, there was no effective post decapitation plan in place.

Let us trust that there are no other "regime change" plans being considered.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

25000 Dead

It was announced yesterday that, since the cessation of the Iraq invasion, 25000 Iraqi civilians have died.

That works out to approximately 34 a day.

The question is, with Iraq bordering on civil war, will there be a country left for the trial of Saddam Hussein to be held in?

RSC Attacked Over Saddam Portrayal

The Royal Shakespeare Company is being criticised for its decision to portray Richard III are Saddam Hussein, in their forthcoming season of Shakespeare plays.

The Richard III Society say that the portrayal will be damaging to Richard's already battered reputation.

Seemingly Richard III had his bad side, but was still a good laugh.

Saddam, evidently, does not carry the same level of support.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Iran Demands War Trial

Iran has demanded that former dictator Saddam Hussein be tried for the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war.

The demand came as Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari ended his fence mending visit to Iran.

Jaafari made a number of agreements with the Iranians on matters ranging from security to Iraq's desperate shortage of refined fuel; somewhat ironic given the massive oil reserves that lie beneath Iraq.

Iranian Foreign Minister, Kamal Kharazi, said that the Iranian government was prepared to provide the Iraqi Special Tribunal charged with trying Saddam and its top aides with "all necessary evidence and documents to the special court for the trial of Saddam."

Kharazi said that Iranian soldiers and civilians had been killed by the chemical weapons of Saddam's regime, which had also made missile strikes on Tehran and other cities during the war.

It is estimated that one million people were killed.

Iraq agreed that Saddam should be held accountable for the war during a visit to Baghdad by Kharazi, in May.

Saddam has now been formally charged, in connection with the 1982 killing of 143 residents of a village northwest of the capital Baghdad. However, investigations are still continuing into other war-crime allegations against him.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Saddam's Trial Could begin Within Days

Iraq's special tribunal has laid the first charges against Saddam Hussein for crimes committed during the former dictator's rule.

The tribunal's chief investigating judge, Raed Jouhi, said that Saddam had been charged along with three other defendants in connection with the killing of Shi'ite Muslims in the village of Dujail, north of Baghdad, in 1982.

Jouhi said that court proceedings against Saddam and the others could begin "within days."