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With Saddam swinging I figured it was a good time to read Con Coughlin's bio, King of Terror. Beyond Saddam's own insensate evil three things really stand out:

(1) How badly the Brits and we screwed Iraq up by pretending there was such a thing, rather than allowing it to remain dividing in three as it had been under the Ottomans.

(2) What a relentlessly poisonous role the French, in general, and Chirac, in particular, played there. The latter even got the Iraqis to change the official name of the Osirack nuclear reactor, which he played a central role in building for Saddam, because his political opposition was using the rhyme against him.

(3) How disastrous the decision to leave Saddam in place in 1991 was for the people of Iraq. Imagine what we'd think of FDR today if he left Hitler in place once the rest of Europe was liberated?


Grade: (A)


Con Coughlin Links:

    -EXCERPT: from Saddam: King of Terror
    -ARCHIVES: "con coughlin" saddam (Daily Telegraph)
    -REVIEW: of Perfect Soldiers: The 9/11 Hijackers - Who They Were, Why They Did It by Terry McDermott (Con Coughlin, Evening Standard)
    -REVIEW: of The Insider: Trapped Inside Saddam's Brutal Regime by Ala Bashir (Con Coughlin, Evening Standard)
    -INTERVIEW: Arms of Terror: Con Coughlin on Uday and Qusay Hussein (A Q&A by Kathryn Jean Lopez, 7/23/03, National Review)
    -ARCHIVES: "Con Coughlin" (Find Articles)
    -REVIEW: of Saddam: The Secret Life by Con Coughlin (David Pryce-Jones, The Spectator)
    -REVIEW: of AMERICAN ALLY : TONY BLAIR AND THE WAR ON TERROR by Con Coughlin (Graham Stewart, The Spectator)

Book-related and General Links:

    Hussein Is Put to Death: Former Iraqi President Hanged Before Dawn in Baghdad (Sudarsan Raghavan, 12/30/06, Washington Post)
    Justice for Saddam, Precedent for the Future: America and its allies deliver a warning to future dictators. (Mario Loyola, 12/29/06, National Review)
    Saddam Hussein executed (The Guardian, December 30, 2006)
    Obituary - Saddam Hussein: April 28, 1937 - December 30, 2006: Former Iraqi dictator who ruled his country without mercy and struck fear into the heart of millions (Times of London, 12/30/06)
    Hussein legacy: Megalomaniac, nationalist leader (Aamer Madhani, December 29, 2006, Chicago Tribune)
    Justice, Iraqi-style (NY Daily News, 12/30/06)
    Final chapter in life of brutality: Slaughter of Iraqi civilians avenged at last (CORKY SIEMASZKO, 12/30/06, DAILY NEWS)
    Tyrant pays for his horrors: Saddam hangs at dawn in Baghdad (RICHARD Sisk, 12/30/06, NY Daily News)
    A thug who used terror and war to stay in power (Rory McCarthy, December 30, 2006, The Guardian)
    (Ashraf Khalil, 12/30/06, LA Times)
‘I Saw Fear, He Was Afraid’: In a NEWSWEEK exclusive, the man hired to videotape Saddam Hussein’s execution recalls the brutal dictator’s humble final moments. (Michael Hastings, 12/30/06, Newsweek)
    The Defiant Despot Oppressed Iraq for More Than 30 Years (NEIL MacFARQUHAR, 12/30/06, NY Times)
    Feared and Pitiless; Fearful and Pitiable (JOHN F. BURNS, 12/31/06, NY Times)
    Dictator Who Ruled Iraq With Violence Is Hanged for Crimes Against Humanity (Marc Santora, James Glanz and Sabrina Tavernise, 12/30/06, NY Times)