The reasons for this are numerous, but there are several primary reasons that are worth considering.
The first, of course, is that if Saddam Hussein to remain imprisoned for life, his imprisonment would serve to remind the Iraqi people that they were once persecuted as citizens, without consideration of their religious sect or what value they contributed to their society and country as individuals. Saddam Hussein, along with his two sons, Uday and Qusay, who were killed in July, 2003,1perpetrated crimes against their own citizens and against their international neighbors, and used their positions of power to indiscriminately brutalize men, women and children says Dr. Sahib Al Hakim, ". . . who spent six years, until the invasion of 2003, calling for Saddam Hussein to be put on trial, organizing a weekly picket in London's Trafalgar Square. Over a million people signed a petition calling for Saddam's trial. But although the Iraqi dictator is now in custody, Dr. Al Hakim still has many more questions."2 Imprisoned for life, Saddam Hussein stands as the image of the abuse of power, the man who, along with his sons, demonstrated a complete disregard for humanity and the Koran and committed acts of atrocity and unspeakable human rights violations against women. Like Dr. Al Hakim, should Saddam remain imprisoned for life, others will be reminded, even if only intermittently, of their lives when their country was held in the power of a vicious dictator. Saddam Hussein, who now stands before an Iraqi court, dressed as an Arab and holding a copy of the Koran, causes Dr. Al Hakim to question, "Why was he allowed to wear Arab headdress to indicate his association with the Arab world, and to hold the Koran' He never did this before."3 Like Al Hakim, those people whose lives were irrevocably altered by the acts of violence committed against them and their families by the former dictator or his sons, will always seek to have the questions on their mind answered - so long as the dictator remains alive.
From the Western perspective, this means that the Iraqi people will perhaps be reminded of their former dictator, and regardless of the title or how the person or persons who seek to undermine their opportunity for independence looks, or whether or not they hold in their hands a copy of the Koran; the Iraqi people will not surrender their independence to people who would have the sole power over them as did Saddam Hussein. The Western hope would be that Iraq, when the people of Iraq have complete independence and freedom to elect their own leadership and government, will not go the way of Iran and surrender that opportunity to the religious fundamentalists who will take them back in time, instead of progressively forward as participants in the world market - which could bring the citizens of Iraq many opportunities and improved living conditions - as well as being participants in a world community where the talents and expertise and goals of the world are focused on resolving important issues like AIDS, famine, and environmental conditions that can only be solved by working together.
Another reason, and a very