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Saddam Husseinís Defense Attorneys Admit Genocide But Insist Itís OK

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Author: Tom Attea

In the trial of Saddam Hussein for genocide, he and his lawyers apparently decided that playing dumb and asking, "What 180,000 Kurds?" would unlikely prove to be a credible defense. So they cleverly decided to admit to the dastardly act of genocide through chemistry, while maintaining that it's OK.

One witness, after describing the blindness the chemical weapons caused, said, "May God blind them all."

She can be satisfied; apparently, God has already blinded the defendants and their lawyers. What else but moral blindness would allow them to claim that lethally poisoning from 50,000 to 180,000 Kurds constituted legitimate acts of aggression against, they maintain, local militias who were in cahoots with Iran.

When more Kurds took the stand and told of the travail of losing their sight and seeing their children lose theirs, while all around them villagers died, what did Saddam's lawyers maintain? The civilian deaths were excusable collateral damage in the Iraqi army's effort to root out Iranian troops in the area.

But the simple truth told by the peasant citizens who were the object of the attacks proved to be a stubborn foe.

One female witness, a mother of five, related, "I lost all my livestock, all my property. I lost all my health. I lost my sight. My children lost their sight." She also said she lost her ability to give birth. After she experienced two miscarriages and the death of one infant, "the doctor told me my womb was affected by chemical weapons." "We were not at fault," she concluded. "Whoever had a hand in this is a criminal."

One male witness, the final testifier of the day, admitted to being a Peshmerga militant at the time and then described the horrific scenes of injury and death, including witnessing "some people's eyes falling from their sockets."

Saddam's defense attorney rose, and declared, "He's a traitor."

Then one of Saddam's former intelligence officers, now also a defendant, stood up to accuse the witness, saying, "The Iranians and the Kurdish were joined." He went on to maintain that Iran had a headquarters there and asked the witness for its address.

The witness, with the sort of disarming truthfulness that is likely to carry the case, replied, "I never heard that."

How do you argue with such forthrightness, no matter how resourceful you are?

About the author

Tom Attea, humorist and creator of, has had six shows produced Off-Broadway. Critics have called his writing "delightfully funny," "witty," with "great humor and ebullience" and "good, genuine laughs."

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