‘Bomb Israel’: The country where Saddam Hussein is still a hero

Amman: 20 years have passed since the end of Saddam Hussein’s power in Iraq. Iraq itself has forgotten this dictator, but in the neighboring country of Jordan, Saddam Hussein’s popularity is still on the rise.

On March 20, 2003, the then US President George W. Bush justified the presence of weapons stockpiles in Iraq and launched Operation Iraqi Freedom, in which 150,000 American and 40,000 British soldiers participated.

Saddam Hussein, who has been in power since 1979, went into hiding after the US invasion and was tracked down by US troops 8 months later, tried, convicted and executed on December 30, 2006.

In Iraq, it is now an arrestable offense to display a picture of Saddam Hussein or to shout slogans in favor of him.

But the situation is different in Jordan, here people still carry the picture of Saddam Hussein with them, stickers and mobile covers based on the picture of Saddam Hussein are also very popular among Jordanian youth.

In fact, Saddam Hussein is widely admired in Jordan for his support of Palestine, Arab nationalism, and his outspoken opposition to Western hegemony.

Most Jordanians who saw the era of Saddam remember him as an honest Arab leader.

A man named Khalil Atiya, talking to a foreign news agency, said that Saddam Hussein was a powerful voice in support of Palestine, he not only supported the Palestinians, but he also provided financial assistance to the families of Palestinian martyrs, and the Israelis. Houses destroyed in the attacks were also rebuilt.

Khalil said Saddam Hussein was the only Arab leader to set up a military base, and from bullets to missiles, 39 of which were fired at Israel.

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He said that during Saddam’s reign, thousands of Jordanian youths studied on scholarships from Iraqi universities. “After Saddam, Iraq was gradually destroyed.”

Anas Nahan, a resident of the capital city of Oman, says that Saddam Hussein is popular here because he wanted the development of the entire Arab region.

Anas sells mobile covers emblazoned with Saddam Hussein’s photos at his shop. He says, “Today, if Saddam Hussein had been there, things would have been different, bombs would not have been dropped on Yemen and Syria, and Israel would have stayed within its limits.”

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