Toppled by Marines, Saddam Hussein’s bronze butt is now up for grabs


An Iraqi man, right, watches a U.S. Marine cover the face of a statue of Saddam Hussein with an American flag before toppling the statue in downtown Bagdhad, Iraq, on April 9, 2003. Moments later the American flag was removed. (AP Photo/Jero me Delay)

Sometimes, you follow the news to places you don’t expect. Today is one of those days.

The bronze butt from the Saddam Hussein statue toppled by Marines in downtown Baghdad on April 9, 2003, is now up for auction, according to several reports out of British media. It was reportedly put up on the block by Crafty Nigel “Spud” Ely, a former British soldier working in Baghdad that day with a TV news crew.

From The Sun out of London:

Spud said: “The Marines had a cordon of tanks guarding the square. But I wanted a piece of the statue.

“And when I mentioned to the Marines I was an old soldier with the Press, they told me, ‘No problem, buddy, help yourself.'”

A soldier wielding a crowbar and sledgehammer helped him to “liberate” half of the face-down statue’s behind.

Spud, now a best-selling author, sneaked it out of Iraq by claiming it was military vehicle armour.

The auction will raise money for British wounded warriors, the newspaper reported.

If there are any Marines in the house that can offer some insight here, much appreciated.


About Author

I'm a senior writer with Marine Corps Times, covering ground warfare, manpower, weapons acquisition and other beats. I embedded in Afghanistan in spring 2010, and plan to return at least once in 2011.


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