Reviews Of Jawad Hashim's Book

Book Review From IraqMemory.org:

Reviewed by Zuhair Kadhum Abboud

 

A Former Iraqi Minister Speaks:

The Memoirs of Ex-Planning Minister Jawad Hashim

Reviewed by LCDR Youssef Aboul-Enein, MSC, USN

book coverOne of the little highlighted benefits of Operation Iraqi Freedom is an expectation for a whole series of books, articles and discussion assessing the nation's Baathist years from 1967 to 2003. As the United States becomes involved in the long-term reconstruction of Iraq and ensuring the viability of that traumatized nation it is vital that Arabic books coming out of a free Iraq be examined by American military planners and policymakers. One of the first books to be published in 2003 is by Jawad Hashim, one of the few Shiite Ministers in the Baathist regimes of both Hassan Al-Bakr and Saddam Hussein. Hashim served as Planning Minister from 1967-1971 and again from 1972-1974, he spent under a decade until 1982 as a member of Iraq's Revolutionary Command Council (RCC).

His book Muzakiraat Wazeer Iraqi Maa Al-Bakr Wa Saddam, Zhikryaat Fee AlSiyasah Al-Iraqiyah 1967-2000 (Translated Memoirs of an Iraqi Minister Under AlBakr and Saddam: Iraqi Political Memories from 1967-2000) published by Dar-AlSaqi in Beirut, Lebanon, offers insight to Arab readers as a person intimate with the inner-workings of the Baathist regimes and discusses how Saddam hijacked Baathism to serve his own personal ambitions. Readers must understand that Jawad Hashim was a committed Baathist upset with the manipulation of this ideology by Hassan Al-Bakr and Saddam Hussein. He wrote the book in exile and on the eve of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Jawad's Early Years (1955-1967)

Jawad Hashim initially wanted to become a fighter pilot and submitted an application to attend Iraq's air academy. He writes that during that time military academy slots were allotted to each region of Iraq, numbers were also manipulated based on a persons religious, ethnic and family connections. Hashim was rejected and his father got him an audience with the Defense Minister Ghazi Al-Dagestani, which was unsuccessful, it would be a year before he could apply again and he spent the time in London attending an English language academy. Aside from language training, Hashim was introduced to Baathism by a fellow Iraqi student; he writes that his circle of Iraqi friends in England introduced him to concepts Arab nationalism, freedom, civil society and socialism. He returned to Iraq in 1956 and joined Baghdad University School of Business, for four years he made the gradual transition from entertaining Baathist ideas to full member, participating in strikes and political agitation that brought down the monarchy of King Feysal II in 1958. After the 1958 revolution, Hashim would become a member of the Baath Arab Socialist Union, during this time Baathists and Nasserists both worked in tandem and its students were conducting joint trips and political retreats. This was considered intolerable by the military junta of General Abdel-Karim Kasem, his interior minister General Saaleh Al-Abdy cracked down, particularly after the failed assassination attempt of Kasem in 1959 (One of the four assassins was Saddam Hussein). Hashim graduating top of his class was given a chance to attend the London School of Economics and study petroleum economics. Hashim would be selected as a means of appeasing nationalists and to get them out of the country and engaged in study. He would watch the violent overthrow of General Kasem from England in 1963; he would receive his Masters degree that same year. Incredibly the Iraqi education attaché penalized Hashim for violating the terms of his scholarship by graduating in two versus three years and associating with Iraqis who were known communists and not under the cognizance of the embassy. He had to return to Baghdad make alternate arrangements to bypass the education attaché and returned to London and completing his doctorate in 1966.

In 1967, he would be introduced to Ahmed Hassan Al-Bakr, who was attempting to contact many of the old Baathist loyalists and agitators from the late fifties and sixties. Jawad Hashim was particularly attractive because of his education and credentials, in many ways Bakr, who went on to establish the first Baathist state in Iraq in 1968, was making contact with persons that would make up his new government in waiting.

Seeds of the Iraqi Baathism

April 4, 1947 is commemorated in Syria and in the former Iraqi regime as the day in which the first Baath Party Congress was convened in Syria. Its' founders Michel Aflaq and Salah-al-Din Bittar would be designated, Party Leader (ideologue) and General Director respectively. In 1949, two non-Iraqi Arabs from Alexandretta, Syria studying in Iraq, Faiz Ismail and Wasfi Ghanem joined the poet and political writer Suleiman Al-Essa to create the first Baathist cell in Baghdad University in 1950. The first Iraqi-wide Baathist Congress was convened in 1954 at Al-Azamiyah. This history may seem humdrum, but these dates and locations carry a lot of meaning to former Iraqi Baathist elements that attempting to undermine progress in Iraq. From college campuses they would organize cells in the military, enticing members with their vision of pan-Arabism and union with the already established Baathist presence in Syria.

Anatomy of the July 1968 Revolution

It is important to realize the coup that removed General Kasem and brought in Abdel-Salam and Adel-Rahman Arif (brothers) in to leadership involved their consolidation of Nassreists, Baathists and Communists into the coup. As soon as the Arif brothers came to power, it would be an internal struggle between those elements for absolute political control of Iraq. The success of Hassan Al- Bakr and his Baathist faction in overthrowing the Arif regime, lays in the fact they recruited Ibrahim Daoud, who led the Republican Guard (not to be confused with Saddam's Republican Guard, in 1968 this was mainly an elite presidential guard) and AbdelRazaq Al-Naif, Deputy Director of Military Intelligence into the coup plot. These senior military leaders were key persons in identifying docile, discontented and loyal units within the Iraqi armed forces. Al-Bakr and other senior officers discussed and worried about what the book terms (Al- Ghitaa Al-Shaabi) populist cover, basically ensuring the illusion that the majority of Iraqis would support and not oppose their coup. The Baathist's relied on Fuad Rikabi, the only Baathist in the 1958 government of General Kasem's regime. He had since left Baathism and became more involved in Nasserist aspirations before becoming a senior leader in Iraq's Arab Socialist Union. Rikabi's efforts were not successful and it appears he had no desire to see the Baathists take power and displace the Arab Socialist Union. The Arab Socialists despised the pro-western leanings of the Baathists. Al-Bakr would change the name of the Baath party to the Baath Arab Socialist Party and press on with his coup which occurred on July 17, 1968.

The author does not go into details of the night of the coup except to say that Hardan Al-Tikiriti made the radio announcement and the commander of the Republican Guard, Hamid Al-Tikiriti ensured his unit did not stand in the way of Al-Bakr. General Hamid Al-Tikriti also arranged a meeting with all officers and troops of the Republican Guard with Al-Bakr on the July 21 st, to explain the reasons for the coup du etat. Note the Al-Tikiriti names of the coup leaders; Hassan Al-Bakr is related to Al-Tikiritis and is the cousin of Saddam Hussein.

The first major announcement after declaring that Al-Bakr had seized control of the government was a series of five pronouncements to the Iraqi people that was designed to placate the masses:

  • Achievement of National Unity, and equality before the law, a government that does not distinguish between its citizens, and offering an opportunity for all.
  • Work towards a solution in the north, as it pertains to the unity of Iraq and the aspirations of the Kurds.
  • Repair rights of Iraqis as expressed in the constitution that includes freedom of expression, freedom of political action, guaranteeing civil society under the law as a first step towards restoring parliament and democratic life in Iraq.
  • Working with brother Arab nations in all fields.
  • Guaranteeing economic prosperity and developing Iraq's natural resources.

As Al-Bakr was making these pronouncements and freeing dissidents from Iraqi jails, at the same time he was moving against those who made it possible for him to attain power. The first was to relieve Abdul-Razaq Al-Naif and Ibrahim Daoud (Minister of Defense for only two weeks) from their posts. Of the twenty- five ministers in Al-Bakr's Council of Ministers (cabinet), eight were military officers and seventeen were civilians. Their ethnic makeup was 15 Sunni, 7 Shia and 3 Kurds. In a cabinet shakeup a month after the coup, of twenty-five ministers, 18 would be Shia, 5 Shia and 2 Kurds, with Hardan Al-Tikriti as Defense Minister. Saddam at this time would become a Baath Party apparatchik and begin his dominance of the party's internal security apparatus.

During Al-Bakr's first meeting of the Council of Ministers in August 1968, after concluding the agenda, he turns to Defense Minister Hardan Al-Tikriti and expresses a desire to take revenge on Ali Al-Mithnu, his finance minister. His crime was a personal squabble they had when Al-Bakr and Al-Mithnu were students in London.

Minister Jawad Hashim

As Iraq's top surveyor on development and infrastructure, Jawad Hashim had to tour various regions of Iraq and in 1968 went to survey Karbala, Najaf, Ramadi and AlHilla. He submitted a report that angered President Al-Bakr that highlighted the economic disparity between the Shiite and Sunni regions that could cause instability in Iraq and his beloved Baathist cause. Al-Bakr gave Hashim the cold-shoulder and had his Chief of Staff advise him not to send such reports and that the government is not here to listen to the requests and complaints of community leaders. It became clear that those Shiite ministers were placed to in effect circumvent the Shiite community by labeling their ministers as pro-Shiite and not a true Iraqi nationalist. Jawad included a report on the Sunni areas of Al-Hilla and Ramadi but it fell on deaf ears, he could only think of the Shiite areas that contained a larger population. It was a primitive political game that further alienated the Shiites from the central government.

Nasser and Minister Hashim

According to the author, he traveled in August 1969 to meet with Egyptian counterparts to discuss economic and infrastructure planning. He met with Nasser and the Egyptian leader, mistook him for Interior Minister Hazem Jawad versus the author whose name is Jawad Hashim. Nasser was primed to discuss a range of internal security matters and asked Hashim to send a message to Baghdad that he would like to see the release and transfer to Egypt of two former Iraqi Prime Ministers Taher Yahya and Abdul-Rahman Bazaaz under the guarantee that they would never interfere in Iraq's Baathist politics again. The Egyptian leader then focused his attention in inquiring about how Saddam Hussein outsmarted Mahdy Ammash in taking over as Deputy Head of Revolutionary Command Council. Nasser was not pleased to see the ascendancy of Saddam Hussein with the help of his cousin Defense Minister Hardan Al-Tikiriti and warned the author saying: "The issue of choosing a Deputy Head of the Revolutionary Command Council is a matter that is up to our Iraqi brothers, however we know this boy (used the derogatory waad) Saddam, he is unstable and a brute." Hashim chose not to report on Nasser's feelings towards Saddam to Iraqi leader Hassan Al-Bakr, but did pass on his request to release the former Iraqi Prime Ministers. Al-Bakr was not amused and said Nasser is liar and will not rest unless he is plotting coups and counter-coups. When Nasser died in September 1970, Al-Bakr initially gave orders to all Iraqi dignitaries not to go to the Egyptian embassy and sign the condolences book. He relented after the second day, convinced by Mahdy Ammash that it would be a great breach of protocol.

Party and Intelligence Missions Blend

The most fascinating aspect of the book is how Iraqi business, diplomatic and intelligence units around the Arab world were focused on creating Baathist cells in the late 1970s to the late 1980s.

UAE Operations:

When the author assumed the Directorship of the Arab Banking and Loan in Abu Dhabi he would come to know first-hand the clandestine operations of Iraqi intelligence in the United Arab Emirates. In 1980, an Iraqi bomb-making ring was caught when an explosion happened in their apartment in Abu Dhabi. Emirati investigators found links to the ring with the Iraqi Trade Center, Manager of Iraq Airways and Iraqi intelligence officials in the embassy. Iraqi intelligence used Iraqi business contacts to provide visas and cover for operatives in the emirate of Sharjah. The author writes the Iraqi businessman based in Sharjah Tareq AbdulRazaq Al- Qadduri was connected with Abdel-Karim Al-Sheihkly (Iraq's Interior Minister) and the Tikriti cousins Abdul-Karim and Barzan (Both Saddam's personal guard).

Kuwaiti Misunderstanding:

Hardan Al-Tikriti who sponsored Saddam's ascent to power traveled to Kuwait in 1969 on a secret mission to confer with his counterpart Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah Al-Sabah. He proposed that Iraqi forces have access to Kuwaiti territory in to protect Iraq's only port of Umm Qasr and in exchange Kuwaiti forces could enter Iraq near Al-Basra to achieve strategic depth against mutual enemies such as Iran. Such a proposal was never officially endorsed by Kuwait and Iraqi forces on the orders of Hardan mobilized into Northern Kuwait setting up a military base their, which escalated to an exchange of fire between Kuwaitis and Iraqi troops in 1973. Iraqi army units did not leave Kuwaiti territory until 1977.

Saudi Arabia and Iraq's Plans to Become the New Power East of the Suez:

The book delves into Baathist dreams of filling the void of British forces protecting Persian Gulf Sheikhdoms. As early as 1969, when London announced its policy of withdrawing its forces east of the Suez, this led to a scramble between Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Iran to dominate the Persian Gulf. It began as a propaganda war in which Iraq's paper Al-Thawra began attacking the House of Saud and in the aftermath of the 1973 War, Saddam and Al-Bakr attempted to clandestine operations on the Saudi bases of Khamis Mushait, Jeddah and Dhahran. Khomeini had been exile over a decade in Najaf, and Baathist leaders got him to issue a fatwa (religious edict) during the 1973 oil embargo, it read as follows:

"It is incumbent on Islamic petroleum producing nations to use oil and other means in its possession like a weapon against Israel and the colonialists, and to prevent oil to those nations aiding Israel."

Despite Saddam attempting to undermine the Saudis, he seemed to have genuine admiration for the single family rule of the Al-Sauds and wanted to copy this in Iraq for his own Tikiriti clan.

Iraq versus the United States:

Iraq's strategic designs to dominate the Gulf, was met by an increasing U.S. interest in the region. In the debates to impose an oil embargo on the United States after the 1973 Yom- Kippur War, Iraq proposed that Arab nations nationalize all U.S. assets and withdraw all investments and cash reserves from U.S. banks and finally cut all diplomatic relations with Washington. The Saudis proposed a gradual reduction of oil exports to manage both the shock of the oil markets on Arab economies and that of the U.S.

Discussions on Iraqi Foreign Policy

Hashim divides Iraq's foreign policy into two phases, the first from 1967 to 1979, in which the ideals of Baathism (A single Arab nation, with the right to live in a single Arab state). From 1979 until Saddam Hussein's removal, Hashim writes that Iraq's foreign policy was not dictated by its founding ideology but by the whims of Saddam Hussein. The first period was dictated by Arab unity and socialist plights. The Baathists found Yasser Arafat's attempt to overthrow King Hussein in September 1970 abhorrent and detracting from the main cause of fighting Israel. By 1971, they created its own Palestinian Baathist liberation front, called the Arab Liberation Front (ALF). Iraq was dismayed at not being informed of the 1973 YomKippur War and sent forces to Syria, which was used to guard rear echelon units, freeing Syrian forces to fight in the Golan Heights. By 1974, Saddam Hussein had rid the Baath Party and Revolutionary Command Council of all officers who opposed his ascendancy and took more responsibility for directing the course of Iraq after that year. It became apparent to Hashim who joined Saddam in the Algiers Conference to settle border disputes with Iran that Saddam was firmly in control of Iraq's destiny. He writes that Saddam, the Shah of Iran and Algerian leader Houari Boumidienne locked themselves up without advisors or ministers and hammered out an agreement.

In 1977, it was Saddam who championed the isolation of Egypt from the Arab world after Sadat's historic visit to Israel. From this came plans to move the Arab League from Egypt to Tunisia and cut all diplomatic and economic aid to Egypt. Among the policies Iraq's Baathists championed was a complete economic subsidy of front-line states (Syria, Jordan and the PLO in Lebanon) continuing hostilities against Israel. In July 1979, Saddam has assumed complete control of Iraq, removing his cousin Hassan Al-Bakr from power under the guise of giving Damascus more power in a union between the two Baathist states of Syria and Iraq. The author then discusses the stream of futile military adventures Saddam leads the nation towards, beginning with the Iran-Iraq War and Gulf War I (Operation Desert Storm).

The Nazim Kazzar Coup of 1973

The Director for General Security Nahzim Kazzar did more to push Saddam Hussein into power than any other Iraqi. The book devotes a chapter on the failed coup plans against Iraqi strongman Hassan Al-Bakr, while he and Saddam Hussein were in Prague in June 1973. The book does poor job in explaining the details of Kazzar's plot, but its aftermath of the coup was the pretext for Saddam to consolidate power into his hands and begin the process of moving Al-Bakr out of the presidency. The Baath regime labeled Kazzar's attempt to overthrow the Baath as driven by his Shiites origins, although the author, a Shiite, disputes this and brings an interesting point that the Sunni Baathists would label all Shia as Ajami (foreigners) eventhough those Shia according to the author, descend from Adnan and Qahtan (original Arab tribes) and Khalid Bin Walid (the Muslim warrior who in the sixth century conquered Iraq from the Persians).

Saddam began in earnest in the summer of 1973 to reorganize Iraq security apparatus bringing in advisors from the Soviet KGB and East German Stasi. He also took control of Iraq's oil, fiscal and planning ministries under the guise of providing RCC oversight in those sectors. Saddam would use assassinations, appointments and intimidation to silence opponents within the Baath Party. His main focus from 1973 to 1975 was the removal of problematic elements of the Baath Party; this included the old guard that brought the Baath to power in 1968.

Saddam had retained the author as an advisor and he writes of the tension he created as he slowly purged party members. Jawad Hashim requested an overseas diplomatic assignment and got one in May 1977, when he was given the directorship of the Arab Economic Development Fund. It saved his life, for on July 17, 1979, Saddam has removed Al-Bakr citing health reasons and installed himself president of Iraq. That day Head of Intelligence Barzan Al- Tikriti was attempting to bring all Baathists for a National meeting on August 21 st. Jawad Hashim decided not to attend and take his family on a needed holiday, after conferring with Barzan Tikriti who told him to take his time in coming back to Baghdad. The meeting would be the infamous public purge of Baath officials as Saddam smoked his cigar in complete control. The author received reports of this public and systematic murder of Baath opponents to Saddam from western news media while in England and wondered about his future. Trusting his instinct Hashim was spared this event and possible implication but on 18 th of October was recalled to Baghdad. He writes how both the Iraqi ambassador to the UAE and station intelligence chief wanted to ensure he made this flight. This would begin his entrance into Saddam's dungeons.

Saddam's New Order

When looking at the grainy black and white video of Saddam calmly smoking a Cuban cigar, while the names of alleged enemies were read out loud, it is easy to see him acting alone. The book goes into the apparatus he had in place led by his Tikriti clan that enabled his absolute control over Iraq. Shortly after Jawad Hashim's return to Baghdad, he is arrested at home and taken to a torture cell at Iraqi Intellgence. There he writes Barzan Al-Tikiriti proceeds to ask him a series of questions designed to discredit the previous regime and demonstrate the Saddam saved the nation both economically and fiscally. His detention was designed to put the former minister and bank governor under stress to probe for his loyalty to Saddam. What is revealing is a system whereby intellectuals are told that Saddam has given specific orders not to torture them while hearing the agony of others. The two pages of questions and answers from the Lieutenant Colonel of Iraqi intelligence who interrogated the author reveal the need to have the author discredit not only individuals but the entire Baath Party congress elected during Al-Bakr's final years in power as fiscally irresponsible and whose plans led to economic chaos. Saddam's henchman were creating and rewriting history and beginning what would be the cult of Saddam Hussein.

The interrogation also delved into criticisms of Iraq and Saddam that only a select few known to the author would have known as they were not public but private conversations. He wrote that getting to the bottom of who betrayed him obsessed his mind and allowed him to focus not on Saddam's evil but getting even. Jawad Hashim would return to Abu Dhabi to resume his duties on October 25, 1979, it would be the last time he would see Baghdad again.

Hashim Outlines Saddam's Methodical Control of the State

The book contains a fascinating chapter on the gradual efforts Saddam made to exert control on the state, starting from 1968. His early days was conducting the security apparatus for the Baath Party and he slowly created a layer of bureaucracy ensuring oversight of the Revolutionary Command Council and devolving Iraq's ministries into merely executing Saddam's decisions. The first step was the creation of Consultative Offices (Makatib Al-Istishariyah), these were created three months after the 1968 coup as a means of coordinating the RCC with ministerial policies, not unlike a transitional government. The difference is these offices made several evolutions, from consultative, to RCC informants. It is here Saddam would take these offices to the next level as internal intelligence apparatus that monitored the civil service, military, the judiciary and much more. It's sole purpose was to protect Hassan Al-Bakr and the regime. The first task of the office was removal of nonBaathists from government, and the replacement with Baath loyalists, Saddam would then remove Baath loyalist and replace them with those loyal to him alone. By 1971, these offices dictated policy to Iraqi ministries and ministers had no effective control except to execute the directions of the consultative offices. All papers of state, studies and financial records would be reviewed by Saddam and those daring to go to President Hassan Al-Bakr would be replaced.

Saddam's main interest was oil and security affairs, when Saddam took power these Consultative Offices swallowed ministries whole. Power sharing of the different offices were as follows:

Saddam Hussein oversaw:

  • Planning
  • Intelligence
  • National Security
  • Petroleum Affairs
  • Economic Affairs
  • Military Affairs
  • Nuclear Power Committee
  • Education
  • Scientific Research
  • Northern (Kuridsh) Affairs

Hassan Al-Bakr oversaw:

  • Agriculture
  • Legal and Judicial Affairs
  • Labor Affairs

Rule of law in Iraq digressed to nepotism, favoritism, Baath loyalties and connections. These offices changed form many times over, but Saddam took to the day to day affairs of state, and President Al-Bakr was increasingly viewed as (AlShaiba) the old fatherly man. When Al-Bakr exploded in anger at the author over a decision that Al-Bakr took, the author went to Saddam. Who said: "These are small matters, as long as we can deal with its quickly, kindly come to me with your problems, and there is no need to bother Al-Bakr in the future," leaning forward Saddam concluded, "you must tell me evertything, and do not worry yourself with the thinking of republican palace fool who takes direction from Yahya Yassin and his like." Saddam would often listen to ministers, generals and in meetings would listen, reserving the last word to make a decision.

By 1974, all security, intelligence and military offices were under Saddam's oversight. From 1974 to 1987, Hashim covers the edicts passed that merited a mandatory death sentence in Iraq. It included organizing other political parties, leaving the Baath Party, military desertion, military absence without leave exceeding five days, currency speculation, and much more. Through the passage of edicts and mass executions and disappearances the Iraqi peopof helplessness against a brutal dictator.

In 1976, Saddam added the title of Deputy Preserver of Secrets and Security, the main title being reserved for President Al-Bakr himself. When the message needed to be sent to the Iraqi people regarding coup plotters, Al-Bakr, Saddam, and his clique would arrange Special Courts (Al-Mahakim Al- Khassa) with four major trials highlighted in the book in 1970, 1973, 1974, 1977 and 1979. These were summary courts with no appeal, no defense and designed to mete out the death penalty. These were not new inventions in Iraq, but became an efficient means of ridding the nation of political and military threats to Saddam and Al-Bakr. Its model was the Revolutionary Courts (Mahkama Al-Thawra) designed in 1969 to quickly process those charged with treason, espionage and attempting to overthrow the Baath Party. It is important to realize that from 1968 to 1979, there was a method to getting rid of mass discontent, and that under Saddam this further devolved into the Special Service Offices and Uday's Fedayeen Saddam doing what they please and murdering citizens openly and without method.

In July 1979, at 10:00 in the morning local Baghdad time, Saddam by this time had effectively ran Iraq for five years, it was time to move on President Al-Bakr. The President was invited to the villa of Saddam's uncle Khairullah Tulfah, with Al-Bakr was his elder son Haitham. Joining Tulfah, was Saddam, and Adnan Khairullah. AlBakr was invited to discuss an important matter of state, and Adnan Khairullah and Saddam laid it before Al-Bakr that morning: "Al- Bakr would announce that he would step-down in favor of Saddam Hussein." Al- Bakr's son angry at the ultimatum drew his pistol and shot Adnan Khairullah in the hand. Saddam's uncle calmed the situation down, Saddam then reasoned with Al-Bakr saying: "You no longer enjoy the support of the army, the intelligence apparatus or even the Republican Guards." The next day the Baath Party committee and Revolutionary Command Council met to consider Al-Bakr's desire to step-down for health reasons in favor of Saddam. A few protested, and Saddam would note those who opposed the transition, and many would be purged starting with the infamous July1979 Baath meeting in which party members were called by name to the execution squads.

Conclusion

Jawad Hashim ends his book pointing the finger at Saddam and saying it was he who:

    1. Formulated Iraq's petroleum policy;

    2. Planned nationalization of Iraqi industry;

    3. Pushed for a nuclear option;

    4. Planned the brutal suppression of the Kurds;

    5. Controlled education, thought and media;

    6. Dictated national Baath policy;

    7. Directed foreign affairs with other states;

    8. Who created an Iraqi citizen who possesses a schizophrenic personality that cannot escape fear;

    9. Declared war on free thought

The final sentences of the book questions if such a man (Saddam) has a conscience. These is just a glimpse of what will come when Saddam goes on trial, the author, who is Shia, does not mention the atrocities committed by his own people and does not talk at all about his exile from Saddam Hussein's Iraq.


LCDR Aboul-Enein is a Navy Middle East Foreign Area Officer currently assigned at the Office of the Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs. The Arabic translation of Hashim's book represents his understanding of the material.

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