Reports of Saddam Hussein Hiding in Hole 'Fabricated', Iraqi Interpreter for US Military Says
05:54 GMT 30.12.2021 (Updated: 16:43 GMT 08.01.2023)
BAGHDAD (Sputnik) - Reports that US troops captured former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein while he was hiding in an underground hole were fabricated, an Iraqi interpreter who worked with the US military at the time told Sputnik.
"After his arrest, the situation was fabricated so that the American administration, headed by Bush, could get out [unscathed], so that the coalition he had created against Iraq would not be defeated, so that the US authority would not suffer because of the attack on Iraq under the pretext of having weapons of mass destruction and imminent threat to peace", the interpreter said.
The interpreter stressed he wanted the world to know that Hussein was in the room
, most likely praying as he was wearing a traditional Arab robe, called a dishdasha, and the notion that he was cowering in a pit at the time of his arrest was fabricated.
Hussein would not have been able to get inside the tunnel, as it was too narrow and the president was already weak at the time, the interpreter added.
"I was wearing a bulletproof vest, I took it off and was able to forcefully squeeze myself into the hole, I could also get out with difficulty. Yes, there was a hole, but the information that the president was arrested there...I'm telling you - he was in the room, he was arrested in the room", the interpreter stressed.
It was "an ordinary room" with no means of communication, it contained only a wardrobe, two beds, a radio, a voice recorder, a small TV, some clothes and shoes, according to the interpreter.
The interpreter also noted that the US troops arresting Hussein removed at least 17 boxes containing millions of dollars from the house he was hiding in.
"There was a cattle shed 300 metres [980 feet] across from the room where the president lived. This is based on the words of a soldier since I was forbidden to approach the shed because of the increased security measures. He said that 17 huge crates were found in the cattle shed, they were gigantic and they contained dollars – an estimated several million. There were also gold bars and jewellery, but in a separate box next to Hussein", the interpreter, who wished to remain anonymous, said.
The crates were taken away in an unknown direction by the unit that stormed Hussein's house, and the Iraqis did not know where they were taken, nor the exact amount, nor where all the money finally ended up.
Following Hussein's arrest on 13 December 2003, the Pentagon claimed that the former Iraqi president was found hiding in an eight-foot-deep hole under a farm. In reality, Hussein was in a room at the time of his arrest, was unconscious, and did not understand what he was saying nor what was happening, according to the interpreter, who wished to remain anonymous for safety reasons.
On 30 December 2006, Hussein was executed
after the US invaded Iraq on the pretext of searching for weapons of mass destruction the country was allegedly hiding. The existence of such weapons was never proved.