Ex-White House media strategist warns Saddam trial could "easily backfire" for US

Ex-White House media strategist warns Saddam trial could "easily backfire" for US

[JURIST] Robert Weiner, a former public affairs aide in the Clinton White House and now head of a Washington, DC media relations firm [firm website], said in an op-ed [text] in Thursday's Boston Globe that the upcoming trial of Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] "could easily backfire and go haywire from the US government's point of view". Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari wants the trial "over and done with" [JURIST report] and said Wednesday it could start in "a month or two" [Reuters report], but other officials have mentioned outside pressure to delay the trial [JURIST report], with one even accusing the US of pressing for delay because it has "secrets to hide" [JURIST report]. Weiner and co-author Alexis Levinthal write:

Saddam could easily point out that our interests were protected when he was in power and remind the world of US and European support and arms to Iraq during the Iran-Iraq conflict. Even more embarrassing to the United States, he could bring out that the CIA used and paid him…

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