Saddam Hussein

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Whatever the will of God is, then the will of God will be there. Nothing is going to change the Will of God, the believers still believe that what God decides is acceptable.
Iraq is a great nation now, as it has been at times throughout history. Nations generally "go to the top" only once. Iraq, however, has been there many times, before and after Islam. Iraq is the only nation like this in the world. This "gift" was given to the Iraqi people by God. When Iraqi people fall, they rise again.
We hope that war will not take place, but if war is forced upon us then Iraq will continue to be here and this country with history of over 8000 years, this country, the cradle of the first civilization of humanity will not finish just like that even though a huge power may want to be like that. Nobody! Nobody should accept that Iraq should finish in such a way!

Saddām Hussein `Abd al-Majid al-Tikrītī (Hussein also spelled Husayn and Hussain; Arabic: صدام حسين عبدالمجيد التكريتي; (28 April 193730 December 2006) was President of Iraq from 1979 to 2003, when he was overthrown in the Iraq War. After being put on trial for crimes against humanity, he was sentenced to death, and was executed by hanging.


The great duel, the mother of all battles has begun.... The dawn of victory nears as this great showdown begins!
The lion does not care about a monkey laughing at him from a tree.
  • Traditionally Marxism attracts the oppressed. This, however, is not the case in the Arab nation... The socialist programs in Arab history did not always come from the poor, but from men who had known no oppression and became the leaders of the poor. The Arab nation has never been as class-conscious as other nations.
    • n.d., quoted in Saddam Hussein: a political biography (2002) by Efraim Karsh and Inari Rautsi.
  • The ideal revolutionary command should effectively direct all planning and implementation. It must not allow the growth of any other rival center of power. There must be one command pooling and directing the subsequent governmental departments, including the armed forces.
    • Baghdad Domestic Service, March 20, 1971, quoted in Saddam Hussein: a political biography (2002) by Efraim Karsh and Inari Rautsi.
  • Our children should be taught to beware of everything foreign and not to disclose any state or party secrets to foreigners... for foreigners are eyes for their countries, and some of them are counterrevolutionary instruments [in the hands of imperialism].
    • al-Dimuqratiyya Masdar Quwwa li al-Fard wa al-Mujtama, 1977, quoted in Saddam Hussein: a political biography (2002) by Efraim Karsh and Inari Rautsi.
  • The most important thing about marriage is that the man must not let the woman feel downtrodden simply because she is a woman and he is a man.
    • Interview with the Al-Mar'a magazine in 1978, quoted in Price of Honor (2002) by Jane Goodwin.
  • I know that there are scores of people plotting to kill me, and this is not difficult to understand. After all, did we not seize power by plotting against our predecessors? However, I am far cleverer than they are. I know they are conspiring to kill me long before they actually start planning to do it. This enables me to get them before they have the faintest chance of striking at me.
    • Summer 1979, quoted in Saddam Hussein: a political biography (2002) by Efraim Karsh and Inari Rautsi.
  • The complete emancipation of women from the ties which held them back in the past, during the ages of despotism and ignorance, is a basic aim of the Party and the Revolution. Women make up one half of society. Our society will remain backward and in chains unless its women are liberated, enlightened and educated.
  • You Americans, you treat the Third World in the way an Iraqi peasant treats his new bride. Three days of honeymoon, and then it's off to the fields
    • Meeting with US State Department officials (1985), as quoted in The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Gulf War (2002) by Charles Jaco, p. 23.
  • The ruling family in Kuwait is good at blackmail, exploitation, and destruction of their opponents. They had perpetuated a grave U.S. conspiracy against us.... stabbing Iraq in the back with a poisoned dagger.
    • Radio Baghdad, July 1990, quoted in Saddam Hussein: a political biography (2002) by Efraim Karsh and Inari Rautsi.
  • The great duel, the mother of all battles has begun.... The dawn of victory nears as this great showdown begins!
    • Broadcast on Baghdad state radio, January 17, 1991.
    • Comment on the beginning of Desert Storm, quoted in Washington Post (17 January 1991) "Iraqi Leader Remains Defiant Following US-Led Air Attacks" by Nora Boustany
  • Palestine is Arab and must be liberated from the river to the sea and all the Zionists who emigrated to the land of Palestine must leave.
    • On Iraqi Television, May 30, 2001; quoted in Robert Wistrich, Muslim Anti-Semitism: A Clear and Present Danger(2002), page 43.
  • The United States reaps the thorns that its leaders have planted in the world. These thorns have not only caused the feet and hearts of certain people to bleed, but also caused the eyes of the people to bleed - those people who wept a lot over their dead.... This was the case in Japan, which was the first to suffer from the capabilities of nuclear destruction on which the United States prides itself. This also includes what it did in Vietnam and Iraq and what it did against the Russian nuclear submarine... The United States has become a burden on all of us. It threatens our security and that of the world on a daily basis... Why do you drive the world to this point, and why do you stab the world with a dagger?
    • Baghdad Television, September 12 2001, quoted in Saddam Hussein: a political biography (2002) by Efraim Karsh and Inari Rautsi.
  • Isn't the use by America and some Western governments of their fire against others in the world including, or in the forefront of whom are the Arabs and the Muslims, one of the most important reasons of the lack of stability in the world at the present time? Isn't the evil inflicted on America in the act of September 11, 2001, and nothing else, a result of this and other acts? This is the main question and this is what the American administration along with of the Western governments or the Western public opinion should answer in the first place with serenity and responsibility, without emotional reaction and without the use of the same old methods that America used against the world.
  • Iraq is a great nation now, as it has been at times throughout history. Nations generally "go to the top" only once. Iraq, however, has been there many times, before and after Islam. Iraq is the only nation like this in the world. This "gift" was given to the Iraqi people by God. When Iraqi people fall, they rise again.
    • Interview with FBI Senior Special Agent George L. Piro (7 February 2004); National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 279.
Long live Iraq! Long live the Iraqi people! Down with the traitors!
  • Long live Iraq! Long live the Iraqi people! Down with the traitors!
  • I call on you not to hate, because hate does not leave space for a person to be fair and it makes you blind and closes all doors of thinking.
    • Saddam Hussein Farewell Letter (MSNBC online)
    • Statement in a farewell letter written to the Iraqi people, written Nov. 5, 2006, released Dec. 27, 2006.
  • la ilaha il-Allah, wa Muhammadu... (There is no god but God and Muhammed [is His prophet])
    • Last words. [1]

Statement of H.E. Mr. Saddam Hussein, President of the Republic of Iraq, on the Iraq-Iranian conflict (1981)


As quoted in Statement of H.E. Mr. Saddam Hussein, President of the Republic of Iraq, on the Iraq-Iranian conflict : before the third summit meeting of the Islamic Conference, 19-22 Rabi'i-al Awal, 1401, 25-28 January, 1981, Saudi Arabia.

  • Historically, and since, 1520, eighteen Treaties have been concluded between the Persian State and its western neighbours regarding its relations therewith including the question of borders. On all occasions, the Persian State chose the opportunity to violate the said Treaties whether by word or deed.
  • Our relations with Iran have witnessed grave crises because of the policies of successive regimes in Iran which have considered Iraq and the Arab homeland, particularly the Arab Gulf area, as a sphere for domination and influence.
  • During the rule of the Shah, arrogance, aggression, territorial expansion at the expense of the Arabs and attempts to harm Iraq's national sovereignty and the rights of the Arab nation were a constant pattern. Iraq and the Arab nation were regarded as a sphere of influence for the expansionist plans of Iranian interests. That policy has been followed throughout history by the State of Persia against its neighbours to the west, and as we have shown.
  • The basic motive behind the hostile position adopted by the new regime in Iran is the desire to expand at the expense of Iraq and the Arab countries in the Arab Gulf region and to interfere in its internal affairs. This has taken on a new cover, which the Iranian responsible officials term as the exportation of revolution to neighbouring countries. You all know that this is the policy of the new rulers of Iran which tries to export what is know as their new revolution and its principles to all Islamic countries. There is no one amongst you who does not know that they are interfering in the internal affairs of all Islamic countries.

President Saddam Hussein's Speech on National Day (1981)


As quoted in President Saddam Hussein's Speech on National Day, Baghdad : Dar al-Ma'mun for Translation and Pub., (1981)

  • Praise be to Almighty God for all that has been realized and congratulations to you, great Iraqis, on what you have achieved. You rightly deserve good and glory. You are a people which has offered a lot to life. Thousands of years ago, you offered great civilizations to humanity and lit the torch of science and knowledge. Together with other sons of your great Arab nation, you contributed — with great distinction to spreading the great heavenly messages. Throughout eras of decline, you, your fathers and grandfathers lived for centuries under oppression, tyranny, back, wardness and poverty. Your enemies thought that you had lost your historical opportunity for ever. But despite all that you suffered during those dark stages of your history — you have proved that you are a living people, that you are the sons of a living and vigorous nation, and that you are the descendants of those great ancestors, the well-known historical leaders, constructors, originators of civilization and Message bearers.
  • For the first time in modern history a Third World state has successfully fought a defensive war — the longest such war between regular armies since the Second World War — without being under the umbrella of a particular military pact or the influence of a particular great power; and without suffering any shackles on its will and independence, or abandoning its principles and policies.
  • Throughout the past glorious ten months you have been fighting as though you were at a wedding. You are obviously not for evil but for good, fraternity and peace. You are the sons of a nation that has offered the values of justice to humanity and fought evil and corruption.
  • The Persian aggression against Iraq was a result of the arrogant, racialist and evil attitudes of the ruling clique in Iran. At the same time, it was a Zionist and imperialist conspiracy aimed at liquidating Iraq's revival and checking its development for decades. It tried to strip you of your shining mind and heart, in the same way as it tried to destroy the scientific, cultural and technical bases of your new revival. But you, with courage, patience and efficiency — thanks to the Revolution's achievements — have been able to meet a challenge which many peoples in the world may fail to meet, and which some countries in the Arab homeland have indeed failed to meet.
  • The aggression of the Zionist entity against the nuclear reactor on 7 June 1981 will not stop the course of scientific and technical progress in Iraq. Rather, it is an additional strong stimulus to develop this course, and to provide it with even greater resources and with more effective protection. Despite our loss, this aggression confirms that Iraq really stands on the right path, offering the Arab nation a model and helping its governments to define the right or the best approach. This would open before us, the Arabs, brighter prospects for the future. It confirms what we have always said, that the long conflict between the Arab nation and Zionism will eventually result in our victory. The Arab nation expresses the right and the forward movement of history while the Zionist entity expresses aggression, crime and racialist and expansionist theories which the free peoples have renounced as part of the hated colonial past, and which has to end despite all resources at its disposal and the efforts by imperialism to keep it alive.
  • We have never said that the fight against the Iranian aggression and against the expansionist Persian tendencies (which have been demonstrated by various means under successive regimes in Iran) is the decisive battle for the Arabs. What we have said, and still say, is that the fight against Zionism is the main decisive battle for the Arabs. This is a great objective reality, which cannot be denied or underestimated except by someone who would not only harm the Arab nation and its main causes, but would also overlook the main danger.
  • The oil is a gift bestowed by God on the Arab nation, to use after centuries of poverty, backwardness and servitude — in raising its living standards, developing its economic, social and cultural conditions, and building up its own power to meet the challenges and conspiracies besetting it.
  • We have to work sincerely and responsibly to thwart any attempt to divide the Arab nation into small groups, with which foreign countries would deal separately. This would eventually be in the interests of Zionism, which stands behind such policies, formulating the relevant theories and promoting distorted information to world politicians, especially in the West, in order to make them adopt an approach which is harmful to the Arab nation and is even against the legitimate interests of their own countries.
  • Dear Martyrs, We do not address you as men who have passed away, but rather as men who are still living among your own people, among your own brothers in the Armed Forces and among your own honest families. As Almighty God says, those who are killed for the sake of God are not dead but alive under His blessing. You have sacrificed your lives, in defence of right and of Iraq, thus giving the highest example in life. Be blessed, you men; you have become a source of great pride for Iraq and for your families. Your comrades-in-arms and your compatriots are aspiring to your position, which is the most glorious and great.
  • Great Iraqi men and women, members of the families of the martyrs, You have offered the homeland the best thing you could afford. Thus you have come to merit love and gratitude from all Iraqis and from its plains, mountains, skies and waters. You are good sons of this country. You have offered to the country great men who have averted harm from the country and paved its way to glory and greatness.
  • Iraqi fighters on the front lines, You courageous officers and soldiers who have been fighting valiantly and efficiently — you have restored the glories of your great Iraq. You have proved that you are the true descendants of those great fighters throughout the ages. You have given the most remarkable example of Arab military power, of which the Arab nation is in need today and tomorrow in its struggle to maintain its existence and integrity, and to restore its usurped rights and territories.

Interview with Dan Rather (2003)

This is what I am calling for we will either make peace, and this is what we hope for and spare our people harm or whoever decides anything other than peace will have to convince his own people with the facts.
  • Whatever Allah decides, we are believers, we believe in what he decides, there's no value for any life without faith.
  • Whatever the will of God is, then the will of God will be there. Nothing is going to change the Will of God, the believers still believe that what God decides is acceptable.
  • We hope that war will not take place, but if war is forced upon us then Iraq will continue to be here and this country with history of over 8000 years, this country, the cradle of the first civilization of humanity will not finish just like that even though a huge power may want to be like that. Nobody! Nobody should accept that Iraq should finish in such a way!
  • The United States can destroy - but the question is, why should America destroy? And why should America generate hostility - the hostility of the world -- towards the United States?
  • I think America and the world also knows that iraq no longer has the weapons, and i believe the mobilization that being done was in fact done partly to cover the huge lie that was being waged against Iraq about chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons. That is why, when you talk about such missiles, these missiles have been destroyed. There are no missile that contradict to the prescription of united nations in Iraq. There are no longer there.
  • I say to the honest Americans that if such a thing happens, do not capitulate, do not give in. You have to defend your country, defend your family and your honor. Do not commit aggression against us. And, as you know, we didn't commit agression against America, America is the one who dearly killing our children, our women, as I am talking to you there are American planes in south and the north dropping their bombs on the citizens and on their properties, this happens daily! if there is a law in world says that the stronger one gets their way it means surrender to "the law of the jungle"! and we do not surrender to "the law of the jungle." It is our duty to defend our country, so we will not to surrender not to America, not to anybody else.
  • Whatever religion they may believe in -- that there must be a law governing humanity and governing relations in humanity, that there should not be an aggressor while others are silent about the aggression. There should not be a killer while those who watch and applaud the killing. There should not be an occupier of the land belonging to others while there are those who keep quiet and never move to remove the occupation.
  • I call for this, because war itself is not a joke. Whoever chooses war as the first choice in his life, then he is not a normal person. I think the - the debates would be an opportunity for us to insure peace and safety. [...] This will be an opportunity for him to convince the world if he commits to war if he is convinced on his own position, This will be an opportunity for him to convince the world that he is right in making such a decision, it could also be an opportunity for us to tell the world our own side of the story and why we want to live in peace and security, I believe that it is the right of the American people, the Iraqi people and the world that we show our evidences clearly so that they can see for themselves, why should we hide from the people? why shouldn't we show them both perspectives? we as presidents, President of the United States and President of Iraq. This is what I am calling for we will either make peace, and this is what we hope for and spare our people harm or whoever decides anything other than peace will have to convince his own people with the facts.
  • Only Allah decides the fate of man but the Almighty also says man should pepare what necessary here on earth, then I can see that in the future we will meet another time, no matter what happens, what takes place, and I hope that the Iraqi people and American people will live in peace and have a relationship that express their national interests without one side harming the other.


  • Hussein stated it is not only important what people say or think about him now but what they think in the future, 500 or 1000 years from now. The most important thing, however, is what God thinks. If God believes something, He will convince the people to agree. If God does not agree, it does not matter what the people think.
    • Interview by FBI Senior Special Agent George L. Piro (7 February 2004); National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 279 [2].
  • SSA Piro asked Hussein why Iraq was the only country to applaud the 9/11 attack, which Hussein immediately denied.... Hussein stated that he wrote editorials against the attack, but also spoke of the cause which led men to commit these acts. The cause was never reviewed which could create such hatred to kill innocent people.
    • Conversation with FBI Senior Special Agent George L. Piro (28 June 2004); National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 279 [3].
  • "Still, I believe that the Arab nation has a right to ask: thirty nine missiles? Who will fire the Fortieth?"
    • Delivery Systems (22 April 2007) CIA [4]
  • President Saddam, he always think about America, "They are foolish. They don't understand anything in this world. They never travel. They don't know anything outside the area. Just they believe what the president says. They are the dictatorship, not us." And about George Bush, the father, he always called him stupid.
    • Latif Yahia, double for Uday Saddam Hussein, in I knew... Saddam (31 July 2007) Al Jazeera English

About Saddam Hussein

I call on you not to hate, because hate does not leave space for a person to be fair and it makes you blind and closes all doors of thinking.
  • Little effort was made to explain Saddam's culpability, his misuse of Iraqi resources, or the fact that we were not embargoing medicine or food. I was exasperated that our TV was showing what amounted to Iraqi propaganda...I must have been crazy; I should have answered the question by reframing it and pointing out the inherent flaws in the premise behind it. Saddam Hussein could have prevented any child from suffering simply by meeting his obligations. Instead, I said the following: 'I think this is a very hard choice, but the price, we think, the price is worth it.' As soon as I had spoken, I wished for the power to freeze time and take back those words. My reply had been a terrible mistake, hasty, clumsy, and wrong. Nothing matters more than the lives of innocent people. I had fallen into a trap and said something that I simply did not mean. That is no one's fault but my own.
  • The Chilcot inquiry's conclusion that the invasion of Iraq was unnecessary and undermined the United Nations requires the prosecution of Tony Blair, the high court has heard. Michael Mansfield QC (Queen's Counsel)... summarised the report's findings as: "Saddam Hussein did not pose an urgent threat to the UK, intelligence reporting about [Iraqi] weapons of mass destruction was presented with unwarranted certainty, that the war was unnecessary and that the UK undermined the authority of the UN security council....Nothing could be more emphatic than these findings," he said. "It was an unlawful war."
  • I was telling our new citizens, in the other room before we came in, that one of my most -- I don't know how to say it -- fulfilling moments was, as Vice President, when I went over to Saddam Hussein's god-awful, gaudy palace. And there were, I think, 167 men and women in uniform standing in that palace. As my wife who -- I think, I'm not sure of this -- may be the only First Lady or Second Lady to go into a warzone -- an active war zone. She was with me, and we both stood there as I was able to swear in every one of those military officers as U.S. citizens. And I thought to myself -- I thought to myself, "What incredible justification for all the things that Saddam didn't believe in." And they stood -- and there were a number there who had won Silver Stars -- not -- like you, not citizens when you join -- won Silver Stars, Bronze Stars, Conspicuous Service Medals, Purple Hearts. And I got to swear them in in the palace of a dictator.
  • For the moment, let me say this: Saddam Hussein's regime is despicable, he is developing weapons of mass destruction, and we cannot leave him doing so unchecked. He is a threat to his own people and to the region and, if allowed to develop these weapons, a threat to us also.
    • Tony Blair, Hansard, House of Commons 6th series, vol. 383, col. 23.
    • House of Commons statement on discussions with President Bush over the Middle East, 10 April 2002.
  • What amazes me is how many people are happy for Saddam to stay. They ask why we don't get rid of Mugabe, why not the Burmese lot. Yes, let's get rid of them all. I don't because I can't, but when you can you should.
    • Tony Blair, as quoted by Michael Ignatieff, "Why Are We In Iraq? (And Liberia? And Afghanistan?)", New York Times, 5 September, 2003.
  • We succeeded in the struggle for freedom in Europe because we and our allies remain stalwart. Keeping the peace in the Middle East will require no less. We're beginning a new era. This new era can be full of promise, an age of freedom, a time of peace for all peoples. But if history teaches us anything, it is that we must resist aggression or it will destroy our freedoms. Appeasement does not work. As was the case in the 1930's, we see in Saddam Hussein an aggressive dictator threatening his neighbors. Only 14 days ago, Saddam Hussein promised his friends he would not invade Kuwait. And 4 days ago, he promised the world he would withdraw. And twice we have seen what his promises mean: His promises mean nothing.
  • Vital issues of principle are at stake. Saddam Hussein is literally trying to wipe a country off the face of the Earth. We do not exaggerate. Nor do we exaggerate when we say Saddam Hussein will fail. Vital economic interests are at risk as well. Iraq itself controls some 10 percent of the world's proven oil reserves. Iraq plus Kuwait controls twice that. An Iraq permitted to swallow Kuwait would have the economic and military power, as well as the arrogance, to intimidate and coerce its neighbors -- neighbors who control the lion's share of the world's remaining oil reserves. We cannot permit a resource so vital to be dominated by one so ruthless. And we won't.
  • We're dealing with Hitler revisited, a totalitarianism and a brutality that is naked and unprecedented in modern times, and that must not stand!
    • George H. W. Bush (23 October 1990), quoted in The Bush Dyslexicon (2002) by Mark Crispin Miller.
  • Trying to eliminate Saddam, extending the ground war into an occupation of Iraq, would have violated our guideline about not changing objectives in midstream, engaging in "mission creep," and would have incurred incalculable human and political costs. Apprehending him was probably impossible. We had been unable to find Noriega in Panama, which we knew intimately. We would have been forced to occupy Baghdad and, in effect, rule Iraq. The coalition would instantly have collapsed, the Arabs deserting it in anger and other allies pulling out as well. Under those circumstances, there was no viable "exit strategy" we could see, violating another of our principles.
  • Some believe we can address this danger by simply resuming the old approach to inspections and applying diplomatic and economic pressure. Yet this is precisely what the world has tried to do since 1991. The U.N. inspections program was met with systematic deception. The Iraqi regime bugged hotel rooms and offices of inspectors to find where they were going next. They forged documents, destroyed evidence, and developed mobile weapons facilities to keep a step ahead of inspectors. Eight so-called Presidential palaces were declared off-limits to unfettered inspections. These sites actually encompass 12 square miles, with hundreds of structures, both above and below the ground, where sensitive materials could be hidden. The world has also tried economic sanctions and watched Iraq use billions of dollars in illegal oil revenues to fund more weapons purchases, rather than providing for the needs of the Iraqi people. The world has tried limited military strikes to destroy Iraq's weapons of mass destruction capabilities, only to see them openly rebuilt, while the regime again denies they even exist. The world has tried no-fly zones to keep Saddam from terrorizing his own people, and in the last year alone, the Iraqi military has fired upon American and British pilots more than 750 times. After 11 years during which we have tried containment, sanctions, inspections, even selected military action, the end result is that Saddam Hussein still has chemical and biological weapons and is increasing his capabilities to make more. And he is moving ever closer to developing a nuclear weapon. Clearly, to actually work, any new inspections, sanctions, or enforcement mechanisms will have to be very different. America wants the U.N. to be an effective organization that helps keep the peace. And that is why we are urging the Security Council to adopt a new resolution setting out tough, immediate requirements. Among those requirements, the Iraqi regime must reveal and destroy, under U.N. supervision, all existing weapons of mass destruction. To ensure that we learn the truth, the regime must allow witnesses to its illegal activities to be interviewed outside the country, and these witnesses must be free to bring their families with them so they are all beyond the reach of Saddam Hussein's terror and murder. And inspectors must have access to any site, at any time, without preclearance, without delay, without exceptions. The time for denying, deceiving, and delaying has come to an end. Saddam Hussein must disarm himself, or for the sake of peace, we will lead a coalition to disarm him. Many nations are joining us in insisting that Saddam Hussein's regime be held accountable. They are committed to defending the international security that protects the lives of both our citizens and theirs. And that's why America is challenging all nations to take the resolutions of the U.N. Security Council seriously.
    • George W. Bush, Address to the Nation on Iraq From Cincinnati, Ohio; (7 October 2002)
  • Today, no nation can possibly claim that Iraq has disarmed, and it will not disarm so long as Saddam Hussein holds power. For the last 4 1/2 months, the United States and our allies have worked within the Security Council to enforce that Council's long-standing demands. Yet, some permanent members of the Security Council have publicly announced they will veto any resolution that compels the disarmament of Iraq. These governments share our assessment of the danger but not our resolve to meet it. Many nations, however, do have the resolve and fortitude to act against this threat to peace, and a broad coalition is now gathering to enforce the just demands of the world. The United Nations Security Council has not lived up to its responsibilities, so we will rise to ours. In recent days, some governments in the Middle East have been doing their part. They have delivered public and private messages urging the dictator to leave Iraq, so that disarmament can proceed peacefully. He has thus far refused. All the decades of deceit and cruelty have now reached an end. Saddam Hussein and his sons must leave Iraq within 48 hours. Their refusal to do so will result in military conflict, commenced at a time of our choosing. For their own safety, all foreign nationals, including journalists and inspectors, should leave Iraq immediately.
  • On my orders, coalition forces have begun striking selected targets of military importance to undermine Saddam Hussein's ability to wage war. These are opening stages of what will be a broad and concerted campaign. More than 35 countries are giving crucial support, from the use of naval and air bases, to help with intelligence and logistics, to the deployment of combat units. Every nation in this coalition has chosen to bear the duty and share the honor of serving in our common defense. To all the men and women of the United States Armed Forces now in the Middle East, the peace of a troubled world and the hopes of an oppressed people now depend on you. That trust is well-placed. The enemies you confront will come to know your skill and bravery. The people you liberate will witness the honorable and decent spirit of the American military. In this conflict, America faces an enemy who has no regard for conventions of war or rules of morality. Saddam Hussein has placed Iraqi troops and equipment in civilian areas, attempting to use innocent men, women, and children as shields for his own military, a final atrocity against his people. I want Americans and all the world to know that coalition forces will make every effort to spare innocent civilians from harm.
  • Good afternoon. Yesterday, December the 13th, at around 8:30 p.m., Baghdad time, United States military forces captured Saddam Hussein alive. He was found near a farmhouse outside the city of Tikrit, in a swift raid conducted without casualties, and now the former dictator of Iraq will face the justice he denied to millions. The capture of this man was crucial to the rise of a free Iraq. It marks the end of the road for him and for all who bullied and killed in his name. For the Ba'athist holdouts largely responsible for the current violence, there will be no return to the corrupt power and privilege they once held. For the vast majority of Iraqi citizens who wish to live as free men and women, this event brings further assurance that the torture chambers and the secret police are gone forever. And this afternoon, I have a message for the Iraqi people: You will not have to fear the rule of Saddam Hussein ever again. All Iraqis who take the side of freedom have taken the winning side. The goals of our coalition are the same as your goals: Sovereignty for your country; dignity for your great culture; and for every Iraqi citizen, the opportunity for a better life. In the history of Iraq, a dark and painful era is over. A hopeful day has arrived. All Iraqis can now come together and reject violence and build a new Iraq.
  • It is true that Saddam Hussein had a history of pursuing and using weapons of mass destruction. It is true that he systematically concealed those programs and blocked the work of U.N. weapons inspectors. It is true that many nations believed that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction. But much of the intelligence turned out to be wrong. As your President, I am responsible for the decision to go into Iraq. Yet it was right to remove Saddam Hussein from power. He was given an ultimatum, and he made his choice for war. And the result of that war was to rid a—the world of a murderous dictator who menaced his people, invaded his neighbors, and declared America to be his enemy. Saddam Hussein, captured and jailed, is still the same raging tyrant, only now without a throne. His power to harm a single man, woman, or child is gone forever, and the world is better for it. Since the removal of Saddam, this war, like other wars in our history, has been difficult. The mission of American troops in urban raids and desert patrols, fighting Saddam loyalists and foreign terrorists, has brought danger and suffering and loss. This loss has caused sorrow for our whole Nation, and it has led some to ask if we are creating more problems than we're solving.
  • I'm often asked why we're in Iraq when Saddam Hussein was not responsible for the 9/11 attacks. The answer is that the regime of Saddam Hussein was a clear threat. My administration, the Congress, and the United Nations saw the threat. And after 9/11, Saddam's regime posed a risk that the world could not afford to take. The world is safer because Saddam Hussein is no longer in power. And now the challenge is to help the Iraqi people build a democracy that fulfills the dreams of the nearly 12 million Iraqis who came out to vote in free elections last December.
  • I think it was right to remove Saddam Hussein. I think it was the right decision then and I still think it was right now.
  • I despised Saddam Hussein, because he attacked Iran when my hostages were being held. It was President Reagan who established diplomatic relations with Saddam Hussein after I left office.
  • They (the Iraqi people) scraped by to get morsels. You skulked by to get contracts. They couldn't realize a penny from the oil that made Saddam rich. You didn't seem to care, as long as it made you rich. You opted for profit over principle. And deals that made a dictator richer and his people poorer. … You are as crass as you are cunning. As phony as you are pathetic. … You were sickening then. You're sickening now.
  • I think that the proposition of going to Baghdad is also fallacious. I think if we we're going to remove Saddam Hussein we would have had to go all the way to Baghdad, we would have to commit a lot of force because I do not believe he would wait in the Presidential Palace for us to arrive. I think we'd have had to hunt him down. And once we'd done that and we'd gotten rid of Saddam Hussein and his government, then we'd have had to put another government in its place. What kind of government? Should it be a Sunni government or Shi'i government or a Kurdish government or Ba'athist regime? Or maybe we want to bring in some of the Islamic fundamentalists? How long would we have had to stay in Baghdad to keep that government in place? What would happen to the government once U.S. forces withdrew? How many casualties should the United States accept in that effort to try to create clarity and stability in a situation that is inherently unstable? I think it is vitally important for a President to know when to use military force. I think it is also very important for him to know when not to commit U.S. military force. And it's my view that the President got it right both times, that it would have been a mistake for us to get bogged down in the quagmire inside Iraq.
    • Dick Cheney, At the Washington Institute's Soref Symposium, April 29, 1991 [1]
  • Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction; there is no doubt that he is amassing them to use against our friends, against our allies, and against us.
    • Dick Cheney, Address at the Opening Session of the 103rd National Convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (August 26, 2002)
  • We are especially concerned about any possible linkup between terrorists and regimes that have or seek weapons of mass destruction. In the case of Saddam Hussein, we have a dictator who is clearly pursuing these deadly capabilities - defying the U.N. resolutions he agreed to, and kicking U.N. weapons inspectors out of his country. Saddam has also shown that he is willing to use weapons of mass destruction. He used them in his war against Iran, and has used them against his own people.
  • America has shown we are serious about removing the threat of weapons of mass destruction."..."We now know that Saddam Hussein had the capacity to produce weapons of mass destruction.... We know he had the necessary infrastructure because we found the labs and the dual-use facilities that could be used for these chemical and biological agents. We know that he was developing the delivery systems — ballistic missiles — that had been prohibited by the United Nations.
    • Dick Cheney, Speech at a Fundraising dinner in New Mexico, (February 16, 2004)
  • If we hadn't taken down Saddam, Gaddafi would not have surrendered his materials. Now Gaddafi's gone, dead, [and] ISIS plays a significant role today in Libya, [and] they would have inherited that material. So that whole area of terrorism, weapons of mass destruction and so forth, everybody wants to say, ‘Well, there wasn’t any WMD in Iraq,’ but that's a small, small way to look at the problem.
    • Dick Cheney, At the Ringling College Library Association Town Hall Lecture Series in Sarasota (January 2017)
  • Blair deliberately exaggerated the threat posed by Saddam Hussein. Chilcot finds that Blair deliberately exaggerated the threat posed by the Iraqi regime as he sought to make the case for military action to MPs and the public in the buildup to the invasion in 2002 and 2003... There was no imminent threat from Saddam... The Chilcot report identifies a series of major blunders by the British intelligence services that produced "flawed" information about Saddam's alleged weapons of mass destruction, the basis for going to war. Chilcot says the intelligence community worked from the start on the misguided assumption that Saddam had WMDs and made no attempt to consider the possibility that he had got rid of them, which he had... No evidence had been found that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction
  • Vous êtes mon ami personnel. Vous êtes assuré de mon estime, de ma considération et de mon affection.
    • Translation: You are my personal friend. Let me assure you of my esteem, consideration and bond.
    • French president Jacques Chirac in a declaration on September 5, 1974.
    • Source: Aeschimann, Éric & Boltanski, Christophe (2006). Chirac d'Arabie : Les mirages d'une politique française (in French), Grasset & Fasquelle, pp. 64, ISBN 2246691214.
  • Before there were any suicide bombers, it was also reported by the same sources that Saddam Hussein was giving $10,000 to the families of anyone who was killed by Israeli atrocities, and there were plenty of them. Well, should he've been doing that? So let's take the first month of the current intifada. I'm just relying now on IDF sources. What they say is, that in the first few days of the intifada, the Israeli army fired a million bullets. One of the high military officers said 'that means one bullet for every child'. Within the first month of the intifada, they killed about 70 people. Using U.S. helicopters, and in fact Clinton shipped new helicopters to Israel as soon as they started using them against civilians. That's just the first month. And it goes on, no suicide bombers. At the time, it was reported that Saddam Hussein was giving $10,000 to every family. Well, is that supporting terror? It seems to me, sending helicopters to Israel when they're using them to attack apartment complexes, that's supporting terror.
  • Sir, I salute your courage, your strength, your indefatigability, and I want you to know that we are with you, hatta al-nasr, hatta al-nasr, hatta al-Quds [until victory, until victory, until Jerusalem].
    • George Galloway, The Times, January 20, 1994, citing BBC monitoring service at 9 PM on January 19 as its source.
  • ... they said, "Sir, we want to tell you a joke." I said, "You don't have time to tell me a joke." They said, "Oh, you gotta hear this one." So I came in, they shut the door, and they said, "Here's"— I said, "What's the joke?" I said, "What's the joke?" They said, "9/11. Saddam Hussein. If he didn't do it, too bad. He should've! Because we're gonna get him anyway." I said, "But that's not funny." I said, "That's not very funny." They said, "It sure isn't."
    • Wesley Clark, Recalling a conversation with unidentified generals at the Pentagon "about ten days after 9/11" (circa 21 September 2001), on Real Time with Bill Maher [2.22] (episode 42), (29 October 2004); panel discussion with Maher, Kevin Costner, and Richard Belzer.
  • Saddam Hussein has shown the world before, with his acts of aggression and his weapons of mass destruction, that he cannot be trusted. Iraq's troop movements and threatening statements in recent days are more proof of this. In 1990, Saddam Hussein assembled a force on the border of Kuwait and then invaded. Last week, he moved another force toward the same border. Because of what happened in 1990, this provocation requires a strong response from the United States and the international community. Over the weekend I ordered the George Washington Carrier Battle Group, cruise missile ships, a Marine expeditionary brigade, and an Army mechanized task force to the Gulf. And today I have ordered the additional deployment of more than 350 Air Force aircraft to the region. We will not allow Saddam Hussein to defy the will of the United States and the international community.
  • We began with this basic proposition: Saddam Hussein must not be allowed to develop nuclear arms, poison gas, biological weapons, or the means to deliver them. He has used such weapons before against soldiers and civilians, including his own people. We have no doubt that, if left unchecked, he would do so again. Saddam must not be prepared to defy the will—be permitted—excuse me—to defy the will of the international community. Without a firm response, he would have been emboldened to do that again and again.
  • I have never been a supporter of or an apologist for Saddam Hussein. Indeed, I recall many lonely occasions in the House when I spoke against Saddam Hussein, his genocide against the Kurdish people and the way that the British Government were financing the re-arming of Iraq. Indeed, the chemical weapons being manufactured in Iraq largely comprise chemicals made in western Europe and north America. Some £1 billion was loaned to Saddam Hussein by British banks, with the agreement of the British Government. His power is largely the creation of western Europe and north America. I do not support him and I do not think that he was right to invade Kuwait...The only purpose of sending troops to the region is to defend and guarantee oil supplies. I find it difficult to accept that the United States is merely defending a small country against a larger country. If that were true, why were Grenada and Panama invaded? What was the Vietnam war about, other than a powerful United States wishing to extend its control and influence throughout the world? ...If the shooting starts and there is war in the Gulf, the retaking of Kuwait will not be a clean, clinical operation—it will be a filthy and long war with hundreds of thousands of dead, and at the end of that war there will still have to be negotiations on the future order and the future government of that area and those countries.
  • It's not as if anyone is worried that through some horrible miscalculation we could be removing the Iraqi Abraham Lincoln by mistake.
  • If the American Atheists Society or Saddam Hussein himself ever sent an unrestricted gift to any of my ministries, be assured I will operate on Billy Sunday's philosophy: The Devil's had it long enough, and quickly cash the check.
  • This folks, reminds me of when Saddam attacked Kuwait and President Bush said ‘I warn you, I warn you, I warn you, do not.’ Well folks, if you think American-style politics is nasty, you guys have just attacked Kuwait.
  • Saddam's ability and family connections enabled him to rise in Iraq's revolutionary governments. As Vice-President, he improved social welfare and literacy. As President, he introduced a totalitarian system modelled on Stalin's and surrounded himself with sycophants who could never reveal any unpleasant truths. Ignorance and bravado led him into two wars he could not win. The second destroyed his regimes and put him on trial for crimes against his people.
    • Clive Foss, The Tyrants: 2500 Years of Absolute Power and Corruption, London: Quercus Publishing, 2006, ISBN 1905204965, p. 200
  • An American-led overthrow of Saddam Hussein - and the replacement of the radical Baathist dictatorship with a new government more closely aligned with the United States would put America more wholly in charge of the region than any power since the Ottomans, or maybe even the Romans.
    • David Frum, The Right Man: The Surprise Presidency of George W. Bush (2013)
  • Should Saddam be considered a condottiere, once in the pay of the U.S. government and then rebellious against his former masters? When war constitutes the global order and when the generals become the highest magistrates, we cannot but expect such developments.
  • He is not mad in the least. He's a very astute person, a clever person.
  • I got hold of a copy of the video that showed how Saddam Hussein had actually confirmed himself in power. This snuff-movie opens with a plenary session of the Ba'ath Party central committee: perhaps a hundred men. Suddenly the doors are locked and Saddam, in the chair, announces a special session. Into the room is dragged an obviously broken man, who begins to emit a robotic confession of treason and subversion, that he sobs has been instigated by Syrian and other agents. As the (literally) extorted confession unfolds, names begin to be named. Once a fellow-conspirator is identified, guards come to his seat and haul him from the room. The reclining Saddam, meanwhile, lights a large cigar and contentedly scans his dossiers. The sickness of fear in the room is such that men begin to crack up and weep, rising to their feet to shout hysterical praise, even love, for the leader. Inexorably, though, the cull continues, and faces and bodies go slack as their owners are pinioned and led away. When it is over, about half the committee members are left, moaning with relief and heaving with ardent love for the boss. (In an accompanying sequel, which I have not seen, they were apparently required to go into the yard outside and shoot the other half, thus sealing the pact with Saddam. I am not sure that even Beria or Himmler would have had the nerve and ingenuity and cruelty to come up with that.)
  • Stunningly, as bad as things were under Saddam—and we have to keep in mind this perspective of Saddam in the wake of a brutal eight-year war with Iran and then the genocidal sanctions for 13 years, from 1991 up until the beginning of this invasion in March 2003—as bad as it was under Saddam, with the repression and the detentions and the torture and the killings, the overall feeling of Iraqis today, in Baghdad and other places in Iraq where I went this trip, was that things are much worse now. There's less—far less security. You don't really know where you can go and what you can do and know that you're going to have any kind of safety. "Any time that we send our kids out to school now," is what I was told, "we don't know for sure on any given day that they're going to come back." And so, the prevailing sentiment is that, yes, it was good initially to have Saddam removed, but people are still concerned with basic things like security, an economy stable enough to be able to have a job to work, to have food and provide something for your family. And these things just no longer exist today in Iraq. So the prevailing sentiment is that it's far worse now even than it was under Saddam Hussein.
  • What we have now come to regard as typical of Middle Eastern regimes is not typical of the past. The regime of Saddam Hussein, the regime of Hafiz al Assad, this kind of government, this kind of society, has no roots either in the Arab or in the Islamic past. It is due and let me be quite specific and explicit it is due to an importation from Europe, which comes in two phases.
    • Bernard Lewis. "Islam and the West: A Conversation with Bernard Lewis." The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life (April 27, 2006), Washington, D.C.: Hay-Adams Hotel.
  • The war against terrorism will not be finished as long as he [Saddam Hussein] is in power.
    • Carl Levin, In an appearance on CNN (December 16, 2001)
  • As you go through history, I didn't think it was going to get quite this close. So it's just one of those recurring things… I hope this doesn't come true in our country. Maybe the film will waken people to the situation. … When I wrote it [Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith], Iraq didn't exist… We were just funding Saddam Hussein and giving him weapons of mass destruction. We didn't think of him as an enemy at that time. We were going after Iran and using him as our surrogate, just as we were doing in Vietnam… The parallels between what we did in Vietnam and what we're doing in Iraq now are unbelievable…[In ancient Rome,] why did the senate after killing Caesar turn around and give the government to his nephew? Why did France after they got rid of the king and that whole system turn around and give it to Napoleon? It's the same thing with Germany and Hitler. … You sort of see these recurring themes where a democracy turns itself into a dictatorship, and it always seems to happen kind of in the same way, with the same kinds of issues, and threats from the outside, needing more control. A democratic body, a senate, not being able to function properly because everybody's squabbling, there's corruption.
    • George Lucas, "Star Wars Raises Questions On U.S. Policy" WBZTV CBS 4 Boston (2005)
  • The US has not committed atrocities in Iraq that are even remotely comparable to what Saddam did.
    • Kanan Makiya, "Kanan Makiya speaks about Iraq 5 years later...", Washington Post (March 20, 2008)
  • Canada's position was Saddam Hussein should be disarmed. Now, to be quite honest, I had a lot of difficulty understanding how he was going to be disarmed without being replaced.
  • For decades, Saddam Hussein has tortured, imprisoned, raped and murdered the Iraqi people; invaded neighboring countries without provocation; and threatened the world with weapons of mass destruction. The time has come to end his reign of terror. On your young shoulders rest the hopes of mankind. When I give you the word, together we will cross the Line of Departure, close with those forces that choose to fight, and destroy them. Our fight is not with the Iraqi people, nor is it with members of the Iraqi army who choose to surrender. While we will move swiftly and aggressively against those who resist, we will treat all others with decency, demonstrating chivalry and soldierly compassion for people who have endured a lifetime under Saddam’s oppression. Chemical attack, treachery, and use of the innocent as human shields can be expected, as can other unethical tactics. Take it all in stride. Be the hunter, not the hunted: never allow your unit to be caught with its guard down. Use good judgment and act in best interests of our Nation. You are part of the world’s most feared and trusted force. Engage your brain before you engage your weapon. Share your courage with each other as we enter the uncertain terrain north of the Line of Departure. Keep faith in your comrades on your left and right and Marine Air overhead. Fight with a happy heart and strong spirit. For the mission’s sake, our country’s sake, and the sake of the men who carried the Division’s colors in the past battles-who fought for life and never lost their nerve-carry out your mission and keep your honor clean. Demonstrate to the world there is "No Better Friend, No Worse Enemy" than a U.S. Marine.
    • Jim Mattis, message to the 1st Marine Division (March 2003), on the eve of the Iraq War, as quoted in "Eve of Battle Speech" in The Weekly Standard (1 March 2003); also quoted in War Stories: Operation Iraqi Freedom (2003) by Oliver North, p. 53
  • If Saddam is such a demon, and people are calling for war crimes charges and trials against him and his nation, why do we not hear the same cry for blood directed at those responsible for even greater amounts of "mass destruction" -- like those responsible and involved in dropping bombs on the cities mentioned above?
    • Timothy McVeigh, (June 1998). "An Essay on Hypocrisy". Media Bypass magazine
  • On August 2, 1990, the very day when President Bush announced a plan to focus defense planning on regional conflicts, the Iraqi mechanized divisions of Saddam Hussein plunged across the border of Kuwait and in six days eliminated conventional military resistance against an outnumbered and uneven Kuwaiti defense force. On August 8, with his crack Republican Guard divisions closing in on the border of Saudi Arabia, the Iraqi dictator declared the "lost province" of Kuwait annexed to Iraq. Saddam Hussein condemned the Kuwaiti ruling family, the al-Sabahs, for mistreating foreign workers and supporting Iraqi dissidents; however, for Saddam the invasion represented primarily a financial coup de main that would place Kuwaiti oil in Iraqi hands. It was a desperate attempt to increase the oil revenues he needed to pay his war debts, rebuild his army and air force, pacify his Sunni Muslim supporters, pursue his grandiose plans to build nuclear and chemical strategic weapons, and replace the now-lost largesse from the Soviet Union and the anti-Iranian Western nations.
    • Allan R. Millett, Peter Maslowski, and William B. Feis, For the Common Defense: A Military History of the United States From 1607 to 2012 (2012), p. 593-594
  • Taking his own counsel, which he admitted rested on his religious convictions and intuition, George W. Bush decided after becoming president that he would rid the world of Saddam Hussein, which already had congressional sanction in 1998. Bush made several public statements about his mission to remove "evil" tyrants and destroy governments that sponsored terrorists. Bush's instincts took more stimulus from Cheney, Rumsfeld, and the neoconservatives in the national security system. Even before 9/11 the White House had investigated what a global war on terrorism might entail. For a president impatient with the complexities of foreign policy, the national security analyses provided little comfort. No other government (not even Israel's) had much stomach for redefining the continuing struggle against terrorism as a war upon a particular state, including Iraq. Even after the shock of 9/11 and the start of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM, the Bush administration found little international support in making Iraq Target Number One for international action. Instead, the consensus, communicated by the State Department and the CIA, was that Saddam Hussein's days were numbered and that his ability to attack his neighbors had been largely, if not completely, destroyed. Saddam was "contained." The president did not accept these assurances.
    • Allan R. Millett, Peter Maslowski, and William B. Feis, For the Common Defense: A Military History of the United States From 1607 to 2012 (2012), p. 651
  • As the Bush administration prepared for war, Saddam Hussein retreated further and further into his own fantasy world. He believed that the United States would not attack because Americans lacked the will to take casualties. His forces could and would kill so many Americans that any Desert Storm II offensive would stall well short of Baghdad, He allowed no one in his inner circle to question his delusions. He also believed that France and Russia, his allies, would deter the United States from displacing him because that was in their economic interests. He planned to save his oil wells and air forces for another postwar rebirth. The WMD threat may have been real to Saddam Hussein and other true believers like his sons, but the missiles, warheads, and deadly chemicals were scattered, hidden, forgotten, and never existed, although few Iraqis outside Chemical Ali's circle knew it. The Iraqi high command was so stacked with loyalists that the generals could easily assume someone else's part of the armed forces had real capability. Information-sharing was an invitation to disgrace and death.
    • Allan R. Millett, Peter Maslowski, and William B. Feis, For the Common Defense: A Military History of the United States From 1607 to 2012 (2012), p. 653-654
  • Saddam Hussein, the dictator of Iraq, aspired to be an Arab hero and conqueror, but his long reign of ruthless oppression, sadistic cruelty, gangsterish corruption, unnecessary wars, mass murder and a ludicrous personality cult led to a series of political miscalculations that brought about the destruction of his regime and his own death on the scaffold.
  • A Ba’athist-dominated coup in 1963 induced Saddam to return, but the new ruler of Iraq, Abdul Salam Arif, soon fell out with his Ba’athist allies, and Saddam was imprisoned for several years before escaping in 1967. He went on to become the right-hand man of the Ba'ath Party leader, Ahmad Hassan al-Bakr, and after the part seized power in 1968, he emerged as the strong man of the regime, becoming vice-president, as well as head of Iraq’s security apparatus and general secretary of the Ba’ath Party. He deliberately fashioned his regime on that of Stalin, whom he studied. From his new position Saddam oversaw the nationalization of the Western-owned Iraqi Petroleum Company, using the funds accrued to develop the country’s welfare state (especially its health system). He also initiated a major drive against illiteracy, made improvements to Iraqi infrastructure and generally sought to encourage modernization and industrialization. At the same time, however, he also worked assiduously to accumulate power to himself, moving loyal lieutenants into key positions, building up a brutal secret police and strengthening his grip on levers of state. In mid-1979 Saddam pressured the ailing al-Bakr to resign, and assumed the presidency himself. He immediately summoned the Revolutionary Council, comprising the senior Ba’ath Party leadership, and announced that “Zionism and the forces of darkness’ were engaged in a conspiracy against Iraq. Then, to the horror of his audience, he announced that those involved were present in the room. While Saddam sat smoking a huge cigar, a series of names were read out, and, one by one, 66 people were led away. Subsequently 22 of these men were found guilty, and Saddam personally supervised their killing, requiring senior figures in the Iraqi leadership to carry out the death sentences.
  • One of the most dangerous forms of human error is forgetting what one is trying to achieve. In the gulf crisis, it is crucial that we look beyond our anger at Saddam and remind ourselves of precisely what U.S. interests are in the crisis and what we seek to accomplish.
    • Paul Nitze, "War Whether We Need It Or Not?" (co-written with Michael F. Stafford) in The Washington Post (6 January 1991); a
  • In our view, all-out war promises the least success in achieving the objectives we have outlined. First, it would not necessarily discourage other potential aggressors. Defeating Saddam Hussein promptly in an all-out war would send an unequivocal signal that this aggression had not been tolerated. But if casualties were high, U.S. sentiment probably would be driven toward a more isolationist posture. Many Americans would be dismayed by the carnage and resentful that our allies were not paying a similar price. (The seeds of such resentment already exist.) They could be expected to oppose any comparable U.S. role in the future. The message would be that the United States had neither the inclination to work in concert with other nations nor the stomach to repeat the anti-Iraq action. Many of our current collaborators, who are ambivalent at best about the war option, might also lose interest in future cooperation with us. A world of growing brutality and chaos would become a likely prospect.
    • Paul Nitze, "War Whether We Need It Or Not?" (co-written with Michael F. Stafford) in The Washington Post (6 January 1991); a
  • I managed to get to him the message that he will be executed, finally telling him that, "You are the last card to be played by Bush and Blair." He said, "I am the last card?" I said, "Yes, you are the last card, because Bush and Blair have no reasons to invade Iraq. All the claims were against Iraq — nuclear, link with al-Qaeda — all these stuff has actually disappeared, proved that they don't exist. But they have you. You are they one who they will claim, 'We have removed the dictator.' Do you think removed dictator will be for life sentence or for releasing?" He said, "I understand."
    • Najib al-Nuaimi, Saddam's attorney before the Iraqi Special Tribunal, in I knew... Saddam (31 July 2007) Al Jazeera English
  • Saddam Hussein was reduced to the Unabomber — Ted Kaczynski — a nutcase hiding in the sticks. Sure, the terrorism by his supporters is frightening. Hence, its name, "terrorism." Killing innocent people by surprise is not called "a thousand points of light." But, as frightening as terrorism is, it's the weapon of losers. The minute somebody sets off a suicide bomb, you can be sure that person doesn't have "career prospects." And no matter how horrendous a terrorist attack is, it's still conducted by losers.
    • P. J. O'Rourke, in "Putting Words in the President's Mouth" (October 12, 2004)
  • We also tried to do that to Saddam Hussein. When he didn't come around, the economic hit men tried to bring him around. We tried to assassinate him. But that was an interesting point, because he had pretty loyal security forces, and in addition he had a lot of look-alike doubles, and what you don't want to be is a bodyguard to a look-alike double and you think it's the president and you accept a lot of money to assassinate him and you assassinate the look-alike, because if you do that, afterwards your life and your family's isn't worth very much, so we were unable to get through to Saddam Hussein, and that's why we sent the military in...
  • We wanted that final deal, similar to the one we'd struck with Saudi Arabia. We wanted to get Saddam Hussein to really tie in to our system, and he refused to do that. He accepted our fighter jets and our tanks and our chemical plants that he used to produce chemical weapons that we knew were being used against the Kurds and the Iranians. He accepted all that, but he wouldn't quite tie into our system in such a big way that he would bring in the huge development organizations to rebuild his country, as the Saudis did, in a Western image. And that's what we were trying to convince him to do and also to guarantee that he would always trade oil for U.S. dollars, instead of Euros, and that he would keep the price of oil within limits acceptable to us. He would not go along with those things. If he had, he would still be president, Amy.
  • Two weeks later they still have not been found. The question is, where is Saddam Hussein? Where are those weapons of mass destruction, if they were ever in existence? Is Saddam Hussein in a bunker sitting on cases containing weapons of mass destruction, preparing to blow the whole place up?
    • Vladimir Putin, In a Press conference, regarding the weapon of mass destruction of Iraq. (May 1, 2003)

  • The PR strategy worked; by the fall of 2002, a majority of Americans were convinced that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction, and at least 66 percent believed (falsely) that the Iraqi leader had been personally involved in the 9/11 attacks. Support for an invasion of Iraq — and Bush's approval rating — hovered around 60 percent. With an eye on the midterm elections, Republicans stepped up the attacks and pushed for a vote authorizing the use of force against Saddam Hussein. And on October 11, 2002, twenty-eight of the Senate's fifty Democrats joined all but one Republican in handing to Bush the power he wanted.
  • Saddam Hussein... I believe is involved with this World Trade Center and Pentagon bombing. I believe that you're going to find out that money from Iraq flowed in and helped this happen.
  • Three years ago, the ruler of Iraq was a sworn enemy of America who provided safe haven for terrorists, used weapons of mass destruction, and turned his nation into a prison. Saddam Hussein was not just a dictator; he was a proven mass murderer who refused to account for weapons of mass murder. He defied the international community and seventeen United Nations resolutions over the course of twelve years, giving no indication that Iraq would ever disarm and comply with the just demands of the world. In 2002 – in Resolution 1441 – the United Nations Security Council unanimously voted that Saddam Hussein had one final chance to comply with his obligations to the international community, or there would be serious consequences. As he had for over a decade, he refused to comply. Every responsible nation recognized this threat, and knew it could not go on forever.
  • What they (Fox News) didn't want was a nuanced argument based on fact. I wasn't willing to take one piece of information, blow it way out of proportion and run with it. They wanted to turn every little thing into a proof that Saddam Hussein was the personification of evil, and after 9/11 we could no longer tolerate it... And I'm there saying, "but that's not really what's happening."... George Herbert Walker Bush invented regime change in Iraq and Bill Clinton inherited it, and ran with it. The CIA made four concerted efforts to assassinate Saddam Hussein under Clinton's leadership. So it's not like this was a passive program; it was an active program....
    • Scott Ritter, Scott Ritter Says Controversial Things About Clinton, Bush, Fox News, the Surge, etc., Interview with the Memphis Flyer, (8 May 2008)
  • Osama Bin Laden and George Bush were both terrorists. They were both building international networks that perpetrate terror and devastate people’s lives. Bush with the Pentagon, the WTO, the IMF and the World Bank. Bin Laden with Al-Qaeda. The difference is that nobody elected Bin Laden... The United States supported Saddam Hussein and made sure that he ruled with an iron fist for all those years. Then they used the sanctions to break the back of civil society. Then they made Iraq disarm. Then they attacked Iraq. And now they’ve taken over all its assets.
    • Arundhati Roy in The Shape of the Beast: Conversations with Arundhati Roy (2008)
  • As far as Saddam Hussein being a great military strategist: He is neither a strategist, nor is he schooled in the operational art, nor is he a tactician, nor is he a general, nor is he a soldier. Other than that, he's a great military man.
    • Norman Schwarzkopf, Jr. Gulf War briefing (28 February 1991), as quoted in "WAR IN THE GULF: Commander's Briefing; Excerpts From Schwarzkopf News Conference on Gulf War" in The New York Times.
  • A defanged Saddam has been forced to retreat behind his own borders. His nuclear, biological and chemical military capabilities have been destroyed and will stay that way if we can figure out how to prevent him from getting them in the future the same way he got them in the past- from unscrupulous firms, both western and eastern, more interest in the corporate bottom line than in world peace. Saddam's military forces suffered a crushing defeat and are no longer a threat to any other nation. Perhaps of greatest importance, because he did the unthinkable, attacked a brother Arab and subsequently lost face in a humiliating military rout, Saddam's irrational, militant voice is no longer relevant in Arab politics. Largely as a result of this and the coalition's gulf victory, the Middle East pace process is moving forward; Palestinians, other Arabs, and Israelis are sitting down at the negotiating table, and our hostages have been freed. Do I think it was worth it? You bet I do.
  • Who defines terrorists? Today's terrorist is tomorrow's friend. We were the ones that worked with Saddam Hussein. The United States worked with bin Laden.
  • It goes without saying that Saddam was a tyrant, and it is good to be rid of him. But in invading Iraq as we did, without a second UN resolution, we violated international law. By mistreating and even torturing prisoners, we violated the Geneva conventions. President Bush has boasted that we do not need a permission slip from the international community, but our disregard for international law has endangered our security, particularly the security of our troops.
    • George Soros, Speech at the National Press Club (28 October 2004)
  • Donald Trump's praise for brutal strongmen seemingly knows no bounds. In reality, Hussein's regime was a sponsor of terrorism – one that paid families of suicide bombers who attacked Israelis, among other crimes. Trump's cavalier compliments for brutal dictators, and the twisted lessons he seems to have learned from their history, again demonstrate how dangerous he would be as commander-in-chief and how unworthy he is of the office he seeks.
  • Saddam was the creation of outsiders. He was created, strengthened, and kept by international force. He is like a man on a tree and the tree will be cut: he will fall down. The formation of a new front will inspire the Iraqi people to intensify the struggle, to give heart to people who before were faced with the whole world supporting Saddam.
    • Jalal Talabani, Statement made as the then-General Secretary of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PKU), on Iraqi opposition leaders — reported in George D. Moffett III (September 20, 1990) "Iraqi Exiles Make a Try at Unity - Saddam's isolation spurs varied opponents to shelve differences and plot his overthrow", Christian Science Monitor, p. 4.
  • Blair deliberately exaggerated the threat posed by Saddam Hussein. Chilcot finds that Blair deliberately exaggerated the threat posed by the Iraqi regime as he sought to make the case for military action to MPs and the public in the buildup to the invasion in 2002 and 2003... There was no imminent threat from Saddam... The Chilcot report identifies a series of major blunders by the British intelligence services that produced "flawed" information about Saddam's alleged weapons of mass destruction, the basis for going to war. Chilcot says the intelligence community worked from the start on the misguided assumption that Saddam had WMDs and made no attempt to consider the possibility that he had got rid of them, which he had... No evidence had been found that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction
  • I noticed how the History Channel is now portraying Saddam as the new Hitler. That's what's going to be set down in our history books—that George Bush and the American government saved the world from this Hitler wannabe? Sure, he did some terrible things, but this is ludicrous. Hussein gassed the Kurds, but where did he get the gas from? He got it from us. But no, let's not tell the truth and reveal that, at one time, Saddam was one of our biggest allies in the Middle East, and shaking hands with Donald Rumsfeld.
    • Jesse Ventura, Don't Start the Revolution Without Me! (2008), chapter 14, p. 265.
  • If you catch him, just give me four seconds with Saddam Hussein.
  • The images of Saddam Hussein endlessly repeated on our screens before the war (Saddam firing a rifle into the air) made him into some kind of Iraqi Charlton Heston — the president not only of Iraq, but also of the Iraqi Rifle Association. The true interest of these images, however, is that they remind us how the ideological struggle is fought out not only at the level of arguments but also at the level of images: which image will hegemonize a field, and function as the paradigmatic embodiment of an idea, a regime, a problem.
  • I first traveled to Iraq because of the phenomenon of Saddam Hussein. In a sense Saddam inhabited a mythological realm, like a throwback to Herod’s day, when warrior kings reigned as semidivine creatures, malevolent and munificent all at once, capable of the greatest cruelties as well as the most extravagant gestures of patronage. There he was, at the dawn of the twenty-first century, a head of state who was indisputably a war criminal, an international fugitive who lived a clandestine life in his own nation and who survived in power thanks to—not in spite of—the terror he inspired in his people. Anything that could be said of Saddam had become, somehow, believable.
    • Anderson, Jon Lee (2004). The Fall of Baghdad. New York: The Penguin Press. p. ix. 

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