Saddam hanging shown on Web video recorded by camera phone at execution

[JURIST] An unofficial and grainy video [WARNING: graphic images] of the entire execution [JURIST report] of Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive; BBC obituary], including his actual hanging, was posted on the Web late Saturday. The official video, broadcast [JURIST report] on Iraqi TV earlier in the day, had shown the moments leading up to the ousted Iraqi dictator's execution, but footage of moment of execution had not been released. The new video appeared to have been shot with a cell phone camera by a witness to the hanging and shows Hussein's body dropping through the trap door of the gallows. It also shows the body after death.

While the original Iraqi TV footage was silent, Saddam can be heard on the new video soundtrack repeating the traditional Muslim Shahada prayer ("There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is his messenger") after a cleric, but he was abruptly cut off in the second verse, when the trap door was opened. The new video also shows Saddam shouting angry political remarks while his Iraqi guards led him into the execution chamber, and later exchanging sardonic barbs with his executioners. According to a Reuters translation, Saddam's Shiite guards and executioners mockingly shouted "Moqtada, Moqtada, Moqtada" in reference to Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr [BBC News profile]. Saddam also taunted his executioners, saying with an apparent smile as they readied the noose, "Is that what you call manhood?" After the hanging, a voice can be heard shouting "The tyrant has fallen!" and flashes are seen as people photograph the body. The International Herald Tribune has more.





 

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