THUNDER BAY – December 30 in history. This is a day in history that included the execution of former Iraqi strongman Saddam Hussein.
The former President of Iraq was captured after the war in Iraq following the invasion of the country by the United States and coalition partners.
The execution of Saddam Hussein took place on Saturday 30 December 2006.
Hussein had been sentenced to death by hanging after being convicted of crimes against humanity by the Iraqi Special Tribunal for the murder of 148 Iraqi Shi’ites in the town of Dujail in 1982. The reason for the massacre of the 148 Shi’ites was an act of retaliation by Hussein over an earlier assassination attempt against him.
Hussein was President of Iraq from 16 July 1979 to 9 April 2003. He was deposed during the 2003 invasion by a multinational force. After his capture in ad-Dawr, near his hometown Tikrit, he was incarcerated at Camp Cropper.
On Sunday 5 November 2006, he was sentenced to death by hanging. The execution took place at the end of 2006.
The execution was controversial. A part of that controversy was that one of the guards at the execution videoed the hanging with his cell phone.
The Iraqi government released an official videotape of his execution. That video showed Hussein being led to the gallows. It ended when Hussein’s head was put in the hangman’s noose.
The massive controversy arose when the unauthorized mobile phone recording of the hanging showed him surrounded by a contingent of his countrymen who jeered him in Arabic and his subsequent fall through the trap door of the gallows.
The atmosphere of the execution drew criticism around the world from nations that both oppose and support capital punishment.
On Sunday 31 December 2006, Saddam Hussein’s body was returned to his birthplace of Al-Awja, near Tikrit, and was buried near the graves of other family members.
- 1066 – Granada massacre: A Muslim mob storms the royal palace in Granada, crucifies Jewish vizier Joseph ibn Naghrela and massacres most of the Jewish population of the city.
- 1460 – Wars of the Roses: Battle of Wakefield.
- 1702 – Queen Anne’s War: James Moore, Governor of the Province of Carolina, abandons the Siege of St. Augustine.
- 1813 – British soldiers burn Buffalo, New York during the War of 1812.
- 1816 – The Treaty of St. Louis (1816) between the United States and the united Ottawa, Ojibwa, and Potawatomi Indian tribes is proclaimed.
- 1825 – The Treaty of St. Louis between the United States and the Shawnee Nation is proclaimed.
- 1853 – Gadsden Purchase: The United States buys land from Mexico to facilitate railroad building in the Southwest.
- 1896 – Filipino patriot and reform advocate José Rizal is executed by a Spanish firing squad in Manila, Philippines.
- 1896 – Canadian ice hockey player Ernie McLea scores the first hat-trick in Stanley Cup play, and the Cup-winning goal as the Montreal Victorias defeat theWinnipeg Victorias 6–5.
- 1897 – The British Colony of Natal annexes Zululand.
- 1903 – A fire at the Iroquois Theater in Chicago, Illinois kills at least 605.
- 1905 – Former Idaho Governor Frank Steunenberg is assassinated at the front gate of his home in Caldwell.
- 1906 – The All-India Muslim League is founded in Dacca, East Bengal, British India. It went on to lay the foundations of Pakistan.
- 1916 – The last coronation in Hungary is performed for King Charles IV and Queen Zita.
- 1919 – Lincoln’s Inn in London, England, UK admits its first female bar student.
- 1922 – The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics is formed.
- 1927 – The Ginza Line, the first subway line in Asia, opens in Tokyo, Japan.
- 1936 – The United Auto Workers union stages its first sitdown strike.
- 1943 – Subhas Chandra Bose raises the flag of Indian independence at Port Blair.
- 1944 – King George II of Greece declares a regency, leaving the throne vacant.
- 1947 – King Michael I of Romania is forced to abdicate by the Soviet Union-backed Communist government of Romania.
- 1948 – The Cole Porter Broadway musical, Kiss Me, Kate (1,077 performances), opens at the New Century Theatre and becomes the first show to win the Best Musical Tony Award.
- 1958 – The Guatemalan Air Force sinks several Mexican fishing boats alleged to have breached maritime borders, killing three and sparking international tension.
- 1965 – Ferdinand Marcos becomes President of the Philippines.
- 1972 – Vietnam War: The United States halts heavy bombing of North Vietnam.
- 1977 – For the second time, Ted Bundy escapes from his cell in Glenwood Springs, Colorado.
- 1981 – In the 39th game of his third NHL season, Wayne Gretzky scores five goals, giving him 50 on the year and setting a new NHL record previously held by Maurice Richard and Mike Bossy, who earlier had each scored 50 goals in 50 games.
- 1993 – Israel and Vatican City establish diplomatic relations.
- 1996 – In the Indian state of Assam, a passenger train is bombed by Bodo separatists, killing 26.
- 1996 – Proposed budget cuts by Benjamin Netanyahu spark protests from 250,000 workers who shut down services across Israel.
- 1997 – In the worst incident in Algeria’s insurgency, the Wilaya of Relizane massacres, 400 people from four villages are killed.
- 2000 – Rizal Day bombings: A series of bombs explode in various places in Metro Manila, Philippines within a period of a few hours, killing 22 and injuring about a hundred.
- 2004 – A fire in the República Cromagnon nightclub in Buenos Aires, Argentina kills 194.
- 2005 – Tropical Storm Zeta forms in the open Atlantic Ocean, tying the record for the latest tropical cyclone ever to form in the North Atlantic basin.
- 2006 – Madrid–Barajas Airport is bombed.
- 2006 – The Indonesian passenger ferry MV Senopati Nusantara sinks in a storm, resulting in at least 400 deaths.
- 2006 – Former President of Iraq Saddam Hussein is executed.
- 2009 – A segment of the Lanzhou–Zhengzhou–Changsha pipeline ruptures in Shaanxi, China, and approximately 150,000 l (40,000 US gal) of diesel oil flows down the Wei River before finally reaching the Yellow River.
- 2009 – A suicide bomber kills nine people at Forward Operating Base Chapman, a key facility of the Central Intelligence Agency in Afghanistan.
- 2011 – Owing to a change of time zone the day is skipped in Samoa and Tokelau.
- 2013 – More than 100 people are killed when anti-government forces attack key buildings in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo.