Can Saddam Hussein be found innocent?

Saddam Hussein was overthrown as a consequence of an illegal war waged by: state terrorists, foreign fighters, vulture like mercenaries and some peripheral nations who prostituted their soldiers in exchange for some US dollars. Kofi Anan, the UN General Secretary, eventually confirmed what the rest of the world was saying – the war was a clear violation of the UN Charter. Saddam Hussein was overthrown illegally, imprisoned unlawfully and now being tried illegitimately by a US-led kangaroo court. However, what charges can be brought against Saddam Hussein? To answer the question, all the allegations that are constantly propagated as proven fact by the Western powers are, listed and analysed below.

a). Suppressing Dissidents (Human Rights Violation)

The allegations of human rights violations and the anti-Saddam mantra were only amplified by the West as part of the war propaganda, since the 1991 Gulf War. Prior to 1991, these allegations were rarely heard in the media, being an US ally. Most certainly he is not unique in suppressing dissidents, using torture and even executions. The governments of, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, Turkey, mini-countries like Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain etc. are equally as bad and some are definitely a lot worse than Saddam. For example, Uzbekistan regime is known to employ horrific torture methods against political dissidents. However, such nations being US allies, their conduct does not even get noticed. The point here is; – if the US is going to try Saddam Hussein for human rights violations, then it must apply this principle consistently or not at all. Because selective application of a law/principle is a form of injustice, and shows ulterior motives in the one who is making the allegations.

In any case, the West has clearly lost the moral authority to make any accusations, as they are also violating human rights by using torture and unlawful internment. What better example than the infamous Abu-Ghraib prison, it was used by Saddam Hussein, and then the Americans came along used the same prison for ‘softening-up’ (torturing) innocent Iraqis and many were executed; no doubt, the Americans excelled Saddam Hussein. Prisoners are held indefinitely in places like Camp-X-Ray and Belmarsh, without being charged and without any legal representation. The US now sub-contracts torture (renditions) to other nasty regimes, but in any case, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has a long reputation for conducting such activities around the world.

If the US is really concerned about human rights, then it should address the rights of the 100,000 dead civilians first, and pay war reparations to Iraq. Where was that concern and commitment to human rights after the massacre in Sabra and Shatila, Rwanda, and in India where the ‘vegetarian’ Hindus cannibalised over 3000 Muslims? Is it a coincidence that none of those places have rich reserves of oil, unlike Iraq!

b) The Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s

The war had the clear blessing of the US, who directly encouraged Saddam Hussein to fight and armed him to the teeth, which included the sale of chemical weapons. If Saddam Hussein is now accused of waging war against Iran, after 25 years, then it is the Iranians and not the US-sponsored Iraqi regime that should be trying him. Most certainly, if he is to be tried, then so should all the culprits that supplied him with the weapons, intelligence and especially those criminals that supplied him with chemical weapons. Such a trial we can only dream of but it would constitute real justice.

c). Using Chemical weapons against the Kurds in 1988

After almost 20 years, Saddam Hussein is being accused of using these weapons against the Kurds in Halabja in 1988. Stephen Pelletiere [1] wrote in the New York Times clearly refuting this allegation. The Kurds were caught in crossfire. If anything they were killed by the cyanide based gas used by the Iranian army and not the mustard based gas used by the Iraqis. Stephen Pelletiere was CIA’s senior political analyst on Iraq during the Iran-Iraq war, and as a professor at the Army War College from 1988 to 2000, he was privy to much of the classified material that flowed through Washington having to do with the Persian Gulf. He also headed a 1991 Army investigation into how the Iraqis would fight a war against the United States. So, no doubt the man has authority on this subject.

What we know for sure, that the US used chemical weapons against the Iraqis (Fallujah, Baghdad and other places) but also against other countries in the past, e.g. Vietnam. With similar effects the US has been also used Depleted Uranium, causing mass deformities, cancer and all sorts of other diseases; this will continue to affect the Iraqis at least for the next 100 years or more. So, in chronological order, it is the US, that should be first in the docks facing charges of using chemical weapons and the like, against humanity.

d). Invasion of Kuwait (former province of Basra – Walayah of Basra)

Kuwait was historically part of Basra, and it was carved up the colonialist powers in line with the policy of divide and rule. The dispute in 1991 was an internal matter between the two Arab countries; no aggression was committed against any Western powers. Iraq could argue it was provoked into attacking Kuwait on a number of issues. However, the Western powers have no arguments in justifying the attack on Iraq apart from the neo-colonial fig leaf of UN resolutions, which only works in one direction; against the weaker nations.

The deaths of Kuwaitis due to the Iraq invasion were inflated. But what is for certain, a lot more Iraqis were killed by the US forces, they committed war crimes against Iraq on a massive scale. When the defenceless women, children and the Iraqi soldiers were retreating on the road to Basra (inside Iraq), they were needlessly murdered. It was a grotesque display of the murderous nature of these state terrorists. The ‘chivalrous’ allied soldiers were even fighting each other to take pot shots at the defenceless Iraqis – Shi’ites, Sunnis and Kurds. This incident let to labelling the road to Basra as the “highway of death”.

Retreating Iraqis were ironically fulfilling the UN resolutions; hence, there was no legitimate reason for the cowardly aggression. Yet, the UN remained a spectator, and took no actions in addressing this heinous crime. This once again confirms the nature of the UN; it is a fig-leaf of the major powers to justify their neo-colonial adventures. If Saddam Hussein is to be tried for invading Kuwait, a former province of Basra, the US and its coalition partners that should certainly stand trial for the unprovoked invasion of distant Iraq and the massive war crimes committed against the Iraqis, since 1991.

e). Killing of the Shi’ites uprising, post 1991 Gulf War

Small numbers of Shi’ites were killed after the 1991 war, for acts of sedition against the state, with open encouragement from the US. Similar treatments were given to anyone else who rebelled against the regime to overthrow it. In any country, such acts of rebellion are punishable with death or long term prison sentences. Saddam Hussein like any other head of state has every right to suppress such a movement. So, where is the crime here?

Legitimacy and Purpose of the Trial

Any trial lacks legitimacy under foreign occupation, according to international laws and common sense. Especially in this case, as the war was illegal, thus subsequent occupation was also illegal; and anything else that followed under occupation, for example elections, must also be illegal, null and void. Behind the scenes, the US is orchestrating the trial using Iraqis largely imported from abroad. The US is still the real authority in Iraq with its armed forces and only the politically naive would contend otherwise. The trial has been given an Iraqi face, for the politically naive, the moderates, traitors and opportunists. In reality, the trial is a smokescreen for the US, which is part of its neo-colonial designs for the region.

Americans claim Saddam Hussein is being tried on behalf of the Iraqi masses but the Iraqis are hardly engaged in a mass euphoric celebration on the streets of Iraq. Because, even those who opposed Saddam Hussein are opposed to the US sponsored trial, they understand that the primary purpose of the trial is to humiliate all the Arabs and Muslims. Accordingly, it is already being used to intimidate nations like Syria, Iran and others. Now if Saddam Hussein was replaced in the docks with the likes of Ariel Sharon, George Bush, Tony Blair there would be a spontaneous ecstatic celebration across the world and not just the Arab/Islamic world.

If Saddam Hussein was the real issue, the coalition forces would have left Iraq after his capture and by that time most of the senior Baath Party officials had also been killed or captured. The credibility of the US claims pertaining to Saddam’s trial is like its earlier claims of Iraq’s WMDs and later claims of its soldiers are benevolent liberators. The stark reality is, no WMDs existed; and the US soldiers are allowed and encouraged as part of the softening-up process, to take the souvenir pictures of Iraqi prisoners from places like Abu-Ghraib. These are the soldiers that are swapping pictures of the genitals of dead Iraqis to gain access to internet porn sites. Numerous reports confirmed that the US soldiers stole from Iraqi homes, offices, museums and palaces. They brag on websites to the wider audience and their friends and families back home, how they murdered and raped, Iraqi boys, girls, men and women in revenge for 9/11 but never for bringing Saddam to ‘justice’!

The trial also serves to divert the attention away from the real war crimes and war criminals. How ironic, that Saddam Hussein is on trial for the alleged killings in 1980s/90s, while the real criminals have just slaughtered 100,000 plus Iraqi civilians, and destroyed the countries entire infrastructure. They are roaming free and preparing for their multinationals to ‘rebuild’ Iraq, using Iraqi oil of course! Thousands of innocent Iraqi men, women and children are languishing in the brutal US-led prisons, in line with the Camp-X-Ray ethos. Many of the prisoners have simply vanished. It is Bush and Blair that are the real war criminals, who should be on the docks.

Can he be found innocent?

The case against Saddam Hussein is weak from the onset, because the real plaintiff (the US) has more than once proven to be a hypocrite and a liar. Allegations of Iraqi WMDs have been proven to be to be a clear lie, perhaps the lie of the century. Likewise allegations of Saddam’s mass graves, where figures of 100,000 to 500,000 were cited have been proven to be massive pre-war propaganda hype, if anything the US has created many mass graves since the first Gulf War in 1991. In any court, the words of a proven liar have no merit; therefore, the US-based allegations and any supportive evidence provided from them should be rejected instantly.

However, regardless of the strength or weakness of the evidences and the credibility of the real Plaintiff (the US), Saddam Hussein will be found guilty and he has to be found guilty. Because after failing to find WMDs, the justification for the war was changed to removing the tyrant Saddam Hussein on behalf of the Iraqi masses. If Saddam Hussein is now found to be innocent, then there are no more arguments for the war, the last remaining fig leaf falls and then even the history according to the victor will not be kind. In any trial there is a theoretical possibility of 50-50 chance of finding someone one innocent or guilty but certainly that is not going to be the case with the trial of Saddam Hussein and we know why.