Iraq, After the Gallows
The world is still recovering from the hangover of Saddam's execution (no pun intended). With the leaking of a cell phone recording of the full hanging, more questions have been raised, and more people are angry with the way the cold blooded dictator was put to death. I've been following the reaction of the blogosphere in general, and the Iraqi blogosphere in particular, as well as other editorials in major newspapers around the world.
A great summary of the reactions of Iraqi bloggers to the hanging is provided by Iraq Slogger. While most of them agree that Saddam should have been put to death, nearly all condemn the way the execution was handled and indicate that such a shameful process does not bode well for the future of Iraq. Click here to read the full summary. (h/t Healing Iraq)
Sami - Iraqi Thoughts I am still shocked even after watching hours of TV. Its funny how as I grew up this was the man I hated most in my life and have always wanted him killed but for some reason the feelings of joy were not what I expected.
Iraq Pundit- Saddam has long been a dead man walking, and I don't care about him or whatever hell he has gone to. My concern is how his well-deserved execution will affect the continuing crisis in Iraq.
Dr Fadhil Badran (Iraq4Ever)- The assassination of Saddam Hussein has killed the last hope of peace in Iraq.
Treasure of Baghdad Although I expected it, I was shocked when I heard it. I felt I want to cry but my tears were mixed, tears of happiness and sadness at the same time. Memories of my life under Saddam flashed back in my mind like a train moving fast.
Meanwhile in Iraq, the killings and kidnappings have not stopped. Iraqi Konfused Kid provides a heart wrenching account of his friend's ordeal in attempting to save the lives of his brothers who have been kidnapped by militias. It's a must read.
But by far one of the best editorials I have read about the execution is Ghada Karmi's piece in the Guardian:
It was always clear that Saddam's fate was sealed from the moment US forces "got 'im", in Paul Bremer's tasteless phrase. He was to be used as a trophy of a mindless and catastrophic war, to redeem America's dented image. But it was also essential to stop him revealing secrets about the west's past enthusiasm in supporting and arming his regime. Hence he was tried on the relatively minor charge of killing 148 people in the village of Dujail, after a plot to assassinate him. Far better to put him away safely for that rather than risk his exposing western hypocrisy, treachery and double-dealing.Also, today's New York Times editorial, "The Ugly Death of Saddam Hussein" hits the right note:
Saddam Hussein deserves no one’s pity. But as anyone who has seen the graphic cellphone video of his hanging can testify, his execution bore little resemblance to dispassionate, state-administered justice. The condemned dictator appeared to have been delivered from United States military custody into the hands of a Shiite lynch mob...
Most Americans, whatever their view of the war, understand that the rule of Saddam Hussein brought a murderous curse and untold suffering upon the Iraqi people. Mr. Hussein has now gone to his grave. But the outrageous manner of his killing, deliberately mimicking his own depraved methods, assures that his cruelty will outlive him.