Saddam Hussein Issues Beyond Palo Alto, posted by Jag Singh, a resident of the Duveneck/St. Francis neighborhood, on Nov 6, 2006 at 9:13 pm
It seems we are very selective in denouncing tyrants. Flash back to 1982 when our very own Donald Rumsfeld warmly greeted Saddam Hussein and promised to normalize relations after a five-judge court found Hussein guilty of executing 148 Shia men and boys from the town of Dujail. None-the-less, the trial of Saddam Hussein has mercifully come to an end. However, the fairness and legitimacy of the trail has received widespread criticism. Malcolm Smart, director of the Middle East and North Africa Program, of Amnesty International (AI) was highly critical of the verdict, declaring, “We don't consider it was a fair process. The court was not impartial. There were not adequate steps taken to protect the security of defense lawyers and witnesses...." AI’s concerns were certainly validated by the facts. Three defense lawyers were assassinated and a sympathetic judge replaced. Predictably, the Bush administration has shamelessly exploited the trial to deflect criticism of its failed Iraq policy and insisted that the verdict be declared a day before the midterm elections. This long trial has consumed $138 million of our tax money. It is doubtful that many Iraqis still believe the invasion of their country was to remove the Ba’athist tyrant after their country has been decimated and its precious oil and gas resources expropriated. Let us hope the mid-term election will result in a victory for the democrats so that the trail of our very own ‘dear leader’ can commence.