Why Saddam’s arrest was saddening [Archives:2004/700/Letters to the Editor]

January 5 2004

Majid Shah
[email protected]

The reason why many “Yemenis aren't happy for Saddam's arrest”, is the very same reason why the Americans loved and held Saddam as their hero in the early eighties. For around two decades, in the seventies and eighties, Saddam served American interests and was, in all sense, cooperative and friendly with the West – all the time executing his people. Since he never harmed the Western interests, he was an ally.
Now, consider this, for the last 4 decades or so, Saddam's government had been one of the true friends of Yemen. He never betrayed Yemen, nor did he do anything to upset Yemenis. For all Yemenis know, Saddam was the ONLY head of state to officially announce his support for the current Yemeni head of state, Ali Abdullah Saleh, during the fight for Yemeni Unity in 1994. Saddam's government absolutely and unconditionally supported the Yemeni people in all their struggles: from the economic downfall of the first Gulf War to the military conflict of 1994.
Yemen, a country who everyone deserted in the 1990's, was always respected by Saddam. In other words, despite his wrong doings to his own people, Saddam showed nothing but support, love, respect, and sincere friendliness to the people of Yemen. You now wonder why the Yemenis are upset that the one and only human to stand with Yemen in all its good and bad times has been arrested. Stop wondering, it is no wonder. It is simple human nature: you respect and love people who respect and love you, irrespective of how they might treat others.