Saddam's Farewell Letter: Don't Hate the U.S.
On November 5, after being convicted at trial, Saddam Hussein wrote a letter. His lawyers have confirmed its authenticity.
''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,'' said the letter, which was written in Arabic and translated by the AP.
''I also call on you not to hate the people of the other countries that attacked us,'' it added, referring to the invasion that toppled his regime nearly four years ago.
Saddam also referred to himself as a martyr:
Saddam said he was giving his life for his country as part of that struggle. ''Here, I offer my soul to God as a sacrifice, and if he wants, he will send it to heaven with the martyrs,'' he said.
As to why Saddam wrote the letter,
The deposed leader said he was writing the letter because his lawyers had told him the Iraqi High Tribunal that tried his case would give him an opportunity to say a final word.
But, they didn't.
''But that court and its chief judge did not give us the chance to say a word, and issued its verdict without explanation and read out the sentence -- dictated by the invaders -- without presenting the evidence,'' Saddam wrote.
''Dear faithful people,'' he added, ''I say goodbye to you, but I will be with the merciful God who helps those who take refuge in him and who will never disappoint any honest believer.''
Saddam should have been tried in an international tribunal. He is now in the midst of a second trial, one that will continue past his execution.
Saddam is in the midst of another trial, charged with genocide and other crimes during a 1987-88 military crackdown on Kurds in northern Iraq. An estimated 180,000 Kurds died during the operation. That trial was adjourned until Jan. 8, but experts have said the trial of Saddam's co-defendants is likely to continue even if he is executed.
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