Poster Of Saddam Hussein Allegedly Found In ISIS Headquarters
Accounts affiliated with the Iraqi army and their allied Shiite militias are circulating images allegedly showing a giant picture of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein in one of ISIS’ headquarters on the outskirts of Fallujah.
The accounts claim the headquarters was established in a factory for construction materials near the Iraqi city. On Saturday, the Shiite Iraqi Badr Organization reportedly took control of the building amid heavy battles between ISIS and Iraqi government forces around Fallujah.
“ISIS and the Baath are two sides of the same coin,” one Twitter user who shared the picture of Saddam posted:
— Mustafa alasade (@Abu_alqasim_) May 29, 2016
The social media user was referring to Saddam Hussein’s political party, which ruled Iraq until the U.S.-led invasion toppled Saddam in 2003 and led to the collapse of the party. According to a report by Reuters, men who were officers during Saddam’s era were strong players in the rise of ISIS as it took control of major cities in Iraq in 2014. Thousands of followers of the Baath Party have also since joined the terror group, the news agency reported.
While the Islamic State and ex-Baathists don’t necessarily have much in common, they joined forces due a variety of factors including self-interest, convenience, and a common hatred of Baghdad’s Shiite-led government, Reuters reported. Others who previously belonged to the Baath Party were radicalized after Saddam was toppled.
This isn’t the first time a picture of Saddam was spotted in a place where ISIS militants allegedly congregated. Posters of him were purportedly found at an ISIS bomb-making factory that Shiite militias seized from the terror group northwest of Fallujah in July 2015, Vocativ discovered.