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Saddam Kamel
A lifelong pursuit of power

Saddam Hussein, whose capture came eight months after an American invasion ended his brutal rule in Iraq, had aspired to become an epoch-making leader of his people and a hero to Arabs and Muslims elsewhere. He encouraged sycophantic writers to portray him as the modern Saladin, the 12th-century warrior credited with uniting Muslim armies to defeat the invading Christian Crusaders. An Iraqi stamp showed Hussein and Saladin, both from the area of Tikrit, side by side; an Iraqi children's book referred to Hussein as Saladin II. But Hussein's real model in consolidating power and governing by terror was a different leader, from a different place: Soviet dictator Josef Stalin....

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