The circus execution of Saddam Hussein has managed to resurrect a man who had become irrelevant to the daily lives of Iraqis. The timing of the event and the atmosphere of it suggest that it was intended by Iraqi prime minister Maliki as a straightforward propitiatory human sacrifice to the followers of Moqtada al-Sadr, whose famous uncle and other close relatives were murdered at Saddam's behest. In that it apparently succeeded; otherwise, it managed to make a mass-murdering despot look like a fallen statesman. The predetermination of Saddam's supporters, genuine and of convenience, to cast him as a martyr has been made much simpler now.
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