Just your average secularist leader

Did you know that Saddam Hussein had a Koran written in his own blood? I didn’t, but apparently it’s true. According to the Guardian:

Over the course of two painstaking years in the late 1990s, Saddam Hussein had sat regularly with a nurse and an Islamic calligrapher; the former drawing 27 litres of his blood and the latter using it as a macabre ink to transcribe a Qur’an. But since the fall of Baghdad, almost eight years ago, it has stayed largely out of sight — locked away behind three vaulted doors. It is the one part of the ousted tyrant’s legacy that Iraq has simply not known what to do with.

Abe Greenwald at Contentions points out how odd it is for this story to be popping up now:

It’s worth noting how little we heard of the “Blood Koran” back when the media was doggedly making the case that Saddam was not only secular but also averse to Muslim zealotry. Today, with no argument to make against Bush, the invasion, or its rationale, the press can begin to examine the truth — apropos of absolutely nothing.

We can argue about whether the costs and consequences of removing Saddam Hussein exceed the benefits. But word of the Blood Koran reminds us that he was, beyond any good faith doubt, a wacko Islamic extremist, and a danger to the region and potentially to the United States.
JOHN adds: It is easy to forget, but we actually wrote about Saddam’s blood Koran in 2005 and mentioned it again in 2008. Maybe now that the boycott on mention of the blood Koran has been broken, we might hear more about the terrorists’ convention that Saddam sponsored in Baghdad in 1999.
PAUL adds: A blood Koran is not easily forgotten Unless one is flirting with senility.

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