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Saddam crony Tariq Aziz sentenced to hang in Iraq

Another chapter closed in the violent legacy of Saddam Hussein:

The international face of Saddam Hussein's regime, Tariq Aziz, was sentenced to death by hanging Tuesday for persecuting Shiites just over three months after the Americans transferred him to Iraqi government custody.

Iraqi High Tribunal spokesman Mohammed Abdul-Sahib did not say when the 74-year-old former foreign minister would go to the gallows. Aziz has 30 days to launch an appeal.

... Aziz was on trial in a long-running case in which he is accused of being part of a campaign of persecuting, killing and torturing members of the Shiite opposition and the banned religious parties, like the Shiite Dawa Party, of which Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is a member.

He was sentenced to 15 years in prison for taking part in forced displacement and 10 years for committing torture. Judge Mahmoud Saleh al-Hassan declared the harshest punishment -- death by hanging -- for participating in deliberate killings but gave no details.

Aziz was one of five members of the deposed regime who were convicted Tuesday of similar crimes. A sixth defendant, Saddam's half brother, Watban Ibrahim al-Hassan, was found innocent because of lack of evidence, the judge said. Al-Hassan served as interior minister.

Aziz has already been convicted and sentenced to 15 years in prison for his role in the 1992 execution of 42 merchants found guilty of profiteering. He also received a seven-year prison sentence for a case involving the forced displacement of Kurds in northern Iraq.

If the Appeals' Court upholds the death sentence, the law says Aziz should be hung within 30 days of the final decision. The Iraqi president also needs to sign off on an execution order.

On a related note, the recent WikiLeaks dump of classified Iraq and Afghanistan military documents confirmed that US personnel continued to find chemical weapons, reagents, and laboratory equipment for years in Iraq, much of it left over from Saddam Hussein's chemical weapons program. There is also speculation that some of the chemical weapons confiscated from al-Qaida operatives were provided by Iran.


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Comments (12)

They're going to hang an ol... (Below threshold)

They're going to hang an old man, and found a couple of old chemical shells, so it was all worth it, whooopie.

Iran is laughing at us all the way to Baghdad.

An old man who was in many ... (Below threshold)

An old man who was in many ways his generation's counterpart to Josef Goebbels.

Iran did not laugh at us un... (Below threshold)

Iran did not laugh at us until Obama was elected.

While some would say hangin... (Below threshold)
Upset Old Guy:

While some would say hanging is too good for Aziz I say, even acknowledging galoob's nonsense is too good for him.

Iran did not laugh at us... (Below threshold)

Iran did not laugh at us until Obama was elected.

Iran was laughing at us when the U.S. military drove into Iraq.

Iran was laughing at us when we installed a government of parties controlled by them.

Iran was laughing at us when we shed blood and spent billions to advance their foreign policy objectives.

Iran's been laughing since ... (Below threshold)

Iran's been laughing since 1979.

Such admirable swift justic... (Below threshold)

Such admirable swift justice in Iraq. Im glad Iran thinks its funny too galoob. Ha hahahahaha

Iraq has shown us the way.<... (Below threshold)
Jay Guevara:

Iraq has shown us the way.

Amnesty International to vo... (Below threshold)

Amnesty International to vocally and vociferously protest this death sentence in 5...4...3...2............

Wait...that's funny. Their website mentions nothing about this. I see they have a news item about wikileaks showing torture in Iraq, but nothing on Tariq Aziz. One might get the idea these guys are only interested in certain cases that advance a certain agenda. Hmmmmmmmm.

Anybody know what happened ... (Below threshold)

Anybody know what happened to Baghdad Bob?

Every time I see Gibbs I think of him.

Interestingly, Aziz was one... (Below threshold)
Paul Hooson:

Interestingly, Aziz was one of the Christian members of the Saddam government, a Chaldean Catholic. When the Arab national socialism movement began to sweep through Egypt, Syria and Iraq, Aziz became a founding member of the Iraqi Ba'ath Arab Socialist Party. This Arab nationalist movement asserted control against the British control of Iraq. Strangely, back in the 1920's, the British even used chemical weapons against the Kurdish and other Iraqis to control insurgencies.

Roy, you are spot on. Of co... (Below threshold)

Roy, you are spot on. Of course Galoob and his leftist phonies do not have a grasp of history/Middle East. Carter made us a laughing stock.

Paul Hooson, I partially agree. Aziz, although probably aware of the behind the scenes torturing, seemed like a moderate to me. I hope he repents as a good Christian would. He isn't getting out of this. ww






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