Maliki’s New Strategy?
Saddam Hussein was laid to rest in the village of al-Awjah near Tikrit, his birthplace. In Salahuddin Province there is anger about the haste with which Saddam was executed and its timing, early on the morning of the Eid al-Adha.
Although the US press is reporting that there weren’t many demonstrations by angry Sunni Arabs and those were subdued, Aljazeera is providing videotape of several demonstrations, in places like Dhuluiya as well as in Bagdad, that look to me substantial.
There were also demonstrations throughout India (see also this link) and in Pakistan.
Libya declared three days of mourning. Jordan, Egypt and the Palestine authority protested the execution.
Al-Hayat reports in Arabic that the Baath Party has announced that Izzat Ibrahim Duri is now the leader of the party and the rightful president of Iraq.
Al-Hayat is saying that some Sunni Arabs who viewed the videotape of Saddam’s execution are suggesting that he was turned over to the Shiite Mahdi Army for implementation of his sentence.
Al-Maliki will now, the paper says, redouble his efforts to reach out to former Baathists. The “debaathification” commission will be disbanded or much weakened. There are even hints that the former Baathists will be exonerated and former Baath officers will be allowed to return to the military.