Saddam Hussein

1979 – 2003
Executed by hanging, 2006
Ba'ath Party (Socialist)
Saddam Hussein
صدام حسين
Iraq, Saddam Hussein (222).jpg
5th President of Iraq
In office
16 July 1979 – 9 April 2003
Prime Minister
Preceded by Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr
Succeeded by Coalition Provisional Authority
Chairman of the Revolutionary Command Council of Iraq
In office
16 July 1979 – 9 April 2003
Preceded by Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr
Succeeded by Post abolished
Prime Minister of Iraq
In office
29 May 1994 – 9 April 2003
Preceded by Ahmad Husayn Khudayir as-Samarrai
Succeeded by Mohammad Bahr al-Ulloum (as Acting President of the Governing Council of Iraq)
In office
16 July 1979 – 23 March 1991
Preceded by Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr
Succeeded by Sa'dun Hammadi
Secretary of the National Command of the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party
In office
January 1992 – 30 December 2006
Preceded by Michel Aflaq
Succeeded by Vacant
Secretary of the Iraqi Regional Command of the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party
In office
16 July 1979 – 30 December 2006
National Secretary Michel Aflaq (until 1989)
Preceded by Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr
Succeeded by Izzat Ibrahim ad-Douri
Deputy Secretary of the Iraqi Regional Command of the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party
In office
1966 – 16 July 1979
Preceded by Unknown
Succeeded by Taha Yassin Ramadan
Personal details
Born Saddam Hussein Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti
(1937-04-28)28 April 1937
Al-Awja, Saladin Province, Iraq
Died 30 December 2006(2006-12-30) (aged 69)
Kadhimiya, Baghdad, Iraq
Nationality Iraqi
Political party Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party (1957–1966)
Baghdad-based Ba'ath Party (1966–2006) (NPF)
Spouse(s) Sajida Talfah
Samira Shahbandar
Children Uday Hussein
Qusay Hussein
Raghad Hussein
Hala Hussein
Religion Sunni Islam

Saddam Hussein Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti (Arabic: صدام حسين عبد المجيد التكريتي Ṣaddām Ḥusayn ʿAbd al-Maǧīd al-Tikrītī;[1] 28 April 1937[2] – 30 December 2006)[3] was the fifth President of Iraq, serving in this capacity from 16 July 1979 until 9 April 2003.[4][5] A leading member of the revolutionary Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party, and later, the Baghdad-based Ba'ath Party and its regional organisation Ba'ath Party – Iraq Region—which espoused ba'athism, a mix of Arab nationalism and Arab socialism—Saddam played a key role in the 1968 coup (later referred to as the 17 July Revolution) that brought the party to power in Iraq.

As vice president under the ailing General Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr, and at a time when many groups were considered capable of overthrowing the government, Saddam created security forces through which he tightly controlled conflict between the government and the armed forces. In the early 1970s, Saddam nationalized oil and other industries. The state-owned banks were put under his control, leaving the system eventually insolvent mostly due to the Iran–Iraq War, the Persian Gulf War, and UN sanctions.[6] Through the 1970s, Saddam cemented his authority over the apparatuses of government as oil money helped Iraq's economy to grow at a rapid pace. Positions of power in the country were mostly filled with Sunnis, a minority that made up only a fifth of the population.

Saddam formally rose to power in 1979, though he had been the de facto head of Iraq for several years prior (see Succession). He suppressed several movements, particularly Shi'a and Kurdish movements seeking to overthrow the government or gain independence, respectively,[7] and maintained power during the Iran–Iraq War of 1980 through 1988. In 1990 he ordered the invasion of Kuwait, leading to the Gulf War of 1991. Whereas some[who?] venerated him for his opposition to Israel—which included the use of military force[8]—he was widely condemned in the west for the brutality of his dictatorship.

In March 2003, a coalition led by the U.S. and U.K. invaded Iraq to depose Saddam, after U.S. President George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair accused him of possessing weapons of mass destruction and having ties to al-Qaeda. Saddam's Ba'ath party was disbanded and Iraq made a transition to a democratic system. Following his capture on 13 December 2003, the trial of Saddam took place under the Iraqi interim government. On 5 November 2006, Saddam was convicted of charges related to the 1982 killing of 148 Iraqi Shi'ites and was sentenced to death by hanging. His execution was carried out on 30 December 2006.[9]
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