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Malcom Lagauche


December 1, 2005

On November 30, 2005, Al-Jazeera News ran an article called "Saddam 'Urged’ to Contest Elections. Here is the beginning of the piece:

Saddam Hussein’s defense team has been inundated with requests from Iraqis to have the ousted leader run in Iraq’s upcoming elections, a member of the team says.

"We received scores of verbal and written requests from Iraqi citizens, the man-in-the-street kind, appealing to have President Saddam run for elections," said lawyer Issam Ghazawi on Wednesday.

The lawyers maintain that Saddam is still Iraq’s legal president. Because of this, although they were happy about Saddam’s popularity as shown by citizens, it creates a quandary. The Al-Jazeera article continued:

Ghazawi said the legal team might at some point examine whether it is legally possible to have Saddam run for elections.

He said the requests from Iraqis that he and other lawyers received on the issue "may not be valid, considering that under Iraqi law, Mr. Saddam is the legitimate and current president of Iraq and it’s unlikely that he can be re-eelcted in the midst of his rule."

"It is possible that we may consider at some point examining the legal aspect of having Mr. Saddam run for elections, although there is no previous precedent to have an Iraqi leader get re-elected during his reign," he said.

This is quite an interesting scenario. Can Saddam run for president if he is the legal president? If he runs for president, what entity would he represent? The current Iraqi government is not a government. Bizarre.

One thing is certain, however. Saddam Hussein is still admired by many Iraqis. The U.S. "liberated" Iraq from Saddam because, in the eyes of the U.S., the people hated him. This has been shown to be a big lie.

What is the U.S. afraid of? If Saddam is so hated, he would garner few votes. This is a chance the U.S. will not take and even if Saddam put his hat in the ring, he would not be allowed to run. If he did, the results would be an overwhelming embarrassment for the U.S.

In 2003, the U.S. made a law in Iraq that promised two years imprisonment for anyone publicly displaying a picture of Saddam Hussein. Is this a move to democracy? Of course not, but most people do not question such anomalies.

Despite the draconian measures imposed by the U.S., Iraqis have recently taken to the streets in pro-Saddam demonstrations. This upsets the U.S. because, according to the imperialists, nobody supports Saddam. More embarrassment.

The Boston Globe ran an article on November 30, 2005, called "Flashes of Old Hussein Set Off Ripples." It concentrated on Saddam’s recent court appearance. Evidently, Iraqis who saw Saddam chastise the judge of his trial were enthralled by his defiance and anti-U.S. statements. According to the article:

Saddam Hussein displayed glowering rage, easy confidence, and Islamic fervor in court yesterday, helping explain why the deposed dictator’s cult of personality has started to make a comeback, even as he stands trial for mass murder.

With the television cameras rolling, Hussein yesterday fashioned himself as an Islamic warrior and Iraqi patriot, dismissing the Iraqi High Tribunal that is trying him as a "small boat rocking in the waves" of the American occupation and challenging the presiding judge with a Koran verse.

Such language endears Hussein to the constituency that actively or passively backs the insurgency in Iraq’s Sunni Arab heartland — places such as Hussein’s birthplace, Awja, where yesterday protestors chanted, "Yes, yes to Saddam" in a demonstration broadcast on Iraqi television.

In recent days, Baghdad residents in the Sunni insurgent stronghold neighborhood of Aadhamiya spoke openly of their affection for Hussein — which has grown, many of them said, over the last year as the elected, Shi’ite-dominated government has failed to curb crime, terrorism and the insurgency.

The U.S. is still trying to make Saddam disappear, but he, like the Energizer bunny, still keeps going and going. Despite Saddam’s capture and subsequent pictures meant to humiliate him, and photos of him in his underwear, many Iraqis still admire him. And, some who were not supporters previously are now on the Saddam bandwagon.

Until this issue is addressed adequately, there never will be peace in Iraq. Every time the U.S. attempts to denigrate Saddam, the ploy backfires. The ultimate mistake for the U.S. and the Iraqi quislings will be for a quick and unfair trial for Saddam and a speedy execution. The Allawis and the Jafaris and the Chalabis of the country will breathe a sigh of relief … but only for a short time. The violence that will ensue will make that of today appear benign.

Scott Ritter, once the head U.N. inspector in Iraq, in a recent interview hit the nail on the head. He said the biggest mistake the U.S. made was to demonize Saddam and then forcefully take him out of power. Ritter called Saddam "the glue that held Iraq together."

More and more people are now coming to that conclusion. But, the U.S. press does not mention this subject. It is taboo.

If you recall, in January of this year, Iraq held an election called "The Purple Revolution." Since then, so many fraudulent aspects of the election have been unveiled that even the U.S. has backed off highlighting its virtues.

What did not make the news was the fact that hundreds of ballot boxes were thrown out because they contained mostly write-in votes for Saddam Hussein. They were destroyed. Again, this was an attempt by the U.S. to make Saddam disappear.

At the time, I wrote to a retired colonel in the old Iraqi army and asked him to explain what would have happened had Saddam been on the ballot. He replied:

Answering your question what if Saddam was nominated. I can assure you millions would reply YES to him. I did ask so many of them this question from different ethnic backgrounds and different ethnic sectors al around Baghdad. The answer is yes because they are frustrated from the conditions they are facing: no oil, no fuel, no electricity, no water, no … They even would like to buy balloons filled with air, but the Americans would cut the air from them.

Things have changed little since January, with the exception that Saddam may be even more popular today than he was 11 months ago. The U.S. strategy of getting rid of leaders they don’t like certainly has not changed. They will attempt to dislodge leaders through any means, including voting. The list is long: Manuel Noriega by force; the fixing of two Bosnian elections (the U.S. unilaterally negated them); the fixing of Serb elections; the almost successful coup against Hugo Chavez; the ouster of Aristide in Haiti, etc., etc. When former U.S. Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright, was asked why the U.S. negated the Bosnian elections, she unashamedly said, "The wrong side won." This is the American way: democracy as long as the right side wins.

With Iraq, things are different. Saddam will not disappear. Even if he is executed, he will still be a motivating force for resistance to U.S. occupation and the quisling Iraqi government.

The theatrically-staged pulling down of Saddam Hussein’s statue on April 9, 2003 may have been symbolic to George Bush. However, the Iraqi people who admire Saddam Hussein will not let the tearing down of a piece of bronze diminish their affection for the man whom the statute symbolized. To Bush, the statue’s demolition was important, but to the Iraqi people, the man depicted by the statue is still standing tall.

:: Article nr. 18335 sent on 02-dec-2005 01:06 ECT


Link: www.malcomlagauche.com/id1.html

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