Latif Yahia (l) was played by Dominic Cooper in The Devil's Double
An Iraqi exile who claims he was forced to become the body double for dictator Saddam Hussein's son has said he is in a legal limbo as he fights to become an Irish citizen.Despite being married to an Irish woman and having an Irish child, Latif Yahia's application for citizenship has been rejected twice.
His battle is now in its 11th year.
Yahia, a former lieutenant in the Iraqi army, said he was forced to become the "fiday" - or double - of Uday Hussein in 1987.
Saddam Hussein and both his sons used decoys for important political occasions, or in situations where a bullet catcher might be needed.
Yahia, who eventually managed to escape Iraq with the help of the CIA, claims he stood in for Uday when addressing troops during the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait.
Yahia eventually settled in Daingean, County Offaly, where he married an Irish woman.
This week, Dearbhail McDonald, the Irish Independent's Legal Editor spoke to Yahia, who is in currently in Belgium.
She told the BBC: "He said he is very hurt and upset that the Justice Minister, Alan Shatter, has so far refused to make a decision in his case.
Latif Yahia with his wife Karen and daughter Dina
Dearbhail McDonald Legal Editor.AN Iraqi exile who claims he was forced to become the body double of dictator Saddam Hussein's playboy son Uday says he is "in a legal limbo" as his fight to become an Irish citizen enters its 11th year.
Despite being married to an Irish woman, and having an Irish child, Latif Yahia's application for citizenship has been rejected twice.
The former army captain, who has been waiting for more than five years for a decision on his third citizenship application, was involved in a movie about his experience as a "fidi" or body double, which were widely used by Saddam's regime.
The 2011 movie, 'The Devil's Double', starred British actor Dominic Cooper, who won critical acclaim for his portrayal of both Mr Yahia and Uday, Saddam's sadistic eldest son.
Mr Yahia told the Irish Independent that he finds it "hurtful and humiliating" that he has not yet received a decision from Justice Minister Alan Shatter, who has been credited with reducing waiting times for decisions in citizenship applications.
"The American CIA and Western government are Behind all the Dictators and Terrorists across the WORLD."
This is a teaser for my documentary, it explains why I am still stateless since I left my country in 1991.
My documentary throws a spotlight on "Democracy" in the West, especially Europe where I have spent the last two decades, sixteen of those years in Ireland alone.
It also proves that though I may satisfy certain criteria for citizenship, Marriage, children, residency, no criminal record, once I am vocal about my belief in the truth I will always be considered "dangerous" to the government of the country where I reside.
While my story has been used as propaganda for the War on Iraq, my voice against the War and the subsequent "governments" in Iraq have been down played.
To wish to see a regime removed is not the same as wishing to see your country and nation crushed and invaded, firstly by American troops and then by an Iranian backed government.
Democracy is an illusion, a tool used against countries that do not agree or want to deal with the West or whose business is over.
The first warning signs for an invasion? When the Americans in particular start talking about "free speech" and "Human rights", things that they themselves only allow a percentage of their population to have.
Mehidi Army in New Iraq?
Where to begin? Some years ago I wrote an article about Iranian sleeper cells, their function and goals. It was widely ignored, especially by the Irish Intelligence services, nonetheless with the recent attempted assassination of The Saudi Ambassador to the US, people may be starting to pay attention. In the first few articles that came out about the attempt, the American Intelligence services were saying "what are the chances that a used car salesman is an assassin?" well, isn't that how sleepers work? They live as very, very, everyday, normal, don't do anything to draw attention to themselves, "beyond reproach" people. Why wouldn't a used car salesman be a sleeper? That's the kind of cover they need, invisible.
America made it's perfect excuse to go into Afghanistan and Iraq when it fabricated Al-Qaeda (see my other blog), but it also gave Iran it's perfect means of spreading its Jaysh al Quds (Army of Jerusalem) Refugees. I am not saying that all refugees are sleepers, that would be far too much of a generalization, what I am saying is that some refugees, especially those from Iraq, were not even Iraqi never mind true refugees, Iran used the Iraq/Iran war to send out it's first wave and the "War on Terror" to replenish their numbers (it is hard to stay ideologically pure when surrounded by temptation)
I think that the time is right to explore why people become "extremists" what drives someone to be a suicide bomber for instance? Well, obviously there are the fanatics, religious or otherwise that believe their way is the only way and are who willing to sacrifice their lives and yours for their cause.
Then there are the people who started out without any particular convictions, who, during the course of their lives witnessed and suffered such cruelty and injustice that they lost all hope and were taken in by fanatics, these people are victims, their pain and suffering is taken and twisted by the true fanatics, they are given an enemy, someone on whom the blame can be placed and sent off to do the fanatics bidding. They are damaged people and they are used in the worst possible way.
Please, please do not believe that fanatics are confined to the Muslim faith, there are Christian, Jewish and many other types too. Recent events in Norway have proved this.
Before I continue I will make this statement again, just in case you haven't read any of my other articles and also to explain.
I am not anti-Shia, while growing up in Iraq we did not have such a divide, everyone celebrated whatever it was with whomever, Shia, Sunni, Kurd, Turkmen, Christian, nobody bothered.
For those that don't know or understand the differences between Sunni and Shia for example, the Sunni came first, Sunnis are followers of the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) the Shia or Shi'ite came later when Hussein the son of Prophet Ali was killed in Kuffa, Iraq,(which is why you will see them slap themselves, it is to cleanse them from the sin of his and his families murder) they follow the teachings of Ali, whom they believe should have received the miracle of the Q'uran instead of Prophet Mohammed although Ali was nine at the time, when the Angel Gabriel came down to give the news to Prophet Mohammed that he shall bring the Q'uran to the world, he was sleeping in Ali's bed.I suppose it is similar to the difference between Catholic and Protestant and with just as much divisiveness these days. I think the true test of any religion is when you don't have to kill in the name of it.
There is also a difference between Iranian Shia and Arabic Shia, when I use the term Shia or Shi'ite I am referring to the Iranian Shia that follow the Ayatollahs, A lot of Arabic Shia were opposed to the war of 2003 and supported Iraq.
With regard to Saddam Hussein and his regime, he was an equal opportunity employer ( he employed Sunni, Shia and Kurd etc) and an equal opportunity killer, if you committed a crime against Iraq/Saddam it made no difference to him what creed your name came under.
No organisation would be able to function without a network, so in the next paragraph or two I will give an example of how the "wrong" kind of people can claim asylum in your country. I'm using a case in Ireland that I have made the authorities aware of but they have done nothing about.
Pre-2003 there were three Mosques in Dublin, the very large one in Goatstown, a smaller one on the South-Circular road and a Hussainiya at Dundrum Bridge.
De El Doble Diablo
Año 1987 en Bagdad, cuando el teniente del ejército iraquí Latif Yahia (Dominic Cooper), es convocado desde la primera línea del frente al palacio de Saddam Hussein y se ve inmerso en las altas esferas de la familia real al tener que convertirse, gracias a su gran parecido físico, en el doble del hijo de Saddam, el famoso príncipe Uday Hussein (Dominic Cooper), un imprudente joven con un hambre feroz por el sexo y la brutalidad. Con su vida y su familia en juego, Latif decide renunciar a su antiguo yo para siempre a medida que aprende a caminar, hablar y actuar como Uday. Con un movimiento en falso que le puede costar su vida, Latif forja un vínculo íntimo con Sarrab (Ludivine Sagnier), la seductora amante de Uday, que es perseguida por sus propios agentes secretos. Pero mientras se teje una guerra con Kuwait, y Uday se cierne con un régimen mafioso que amenaza con destruirlos a todos, Latif se da cuenta que escapar de la guarida del diablo tendrá un alto precio.
Since I wrote my first book in 1992, originally in Arabic and then translated to German. I have been trying to remove and stop certain publishers, especially American publishers namely Arcade publishing ( a bankrupt part of Time Warner) and now Skyhorse Publishing who bought the bankrupt Arcade publishing, from selling books that they attribute to me but that I have never given consent or authorisation to be published.
If you want to buy my books, then please go to www.arcanummediagroup.com or if you wish to buy the Kindle versions go to Amazon.
Due to a high demand for autographed copies of my books,and taking into account the amount that some of my previously autographed books are being offered for on Amazon and other sites (some being offered at 2,000 euros), my publisher has asked me to do something special for the holiday season. From now until December 18th, I will be signing copies of all my books at no extra cost, once it is purchased directly from my website (otherwise I won't get it to sign it). All books will be autographed to the buyer, if you wish the book to be autographed to someone else as a gift for example please email the publisher through their "contact us" form with the details of who you would like it made out to and the address it's to be sent to if different from the buyers.
Happy holidays and enjoy the festive season.
Best regards to all,
THE DEVIL'S DOUBLE €19.99
THE DEVIL’S DOUBLE:
is the first of three autobiographical books chronicling Latif Yahia’s incredible life-story. It vividly describes how Latif was forced to become Uday Hussein’s ‘fidai’ (body-double) and gives a unique insight into the extreme extravagance and cruelty of the Saddam regime. Latif survived assassination attempts and witnessed Uday’s psychotic temper, rapes, orgy parties, torture atrocities, and sadistic murders. The book has recently been made into a highly-acclaimed movie.
THE BLACK HOLE €14.99
The Book the American CIA don't want you to read.
The Black Hole continues on from Latif Yahias' escape from Iraq and Uday Saddam Hussein to Europe. Finding himself in Vienna, Austria, Latif and his companion try to build a new life, but with the CIA never far away and the Iraqi Intelligence service under orders to assassinate him, his life is far from quiet.
Unlike The Devil's Double, The Black Hole was not held up in the American congress as a mirror to the tyranny that prevailed in Iraq or indeed the middle-east. Shining a bright light on the modus operandi of the CIA with regard to gathering intelligence, debriefing defectors and what actually happens when you say NO, it speaks loudly of the similarities between the methods of those at the top, whether they be Western or Middle-eastern. The Black Hole is banned from bookstores in Ireland and the USA.
Since the author, Latif Yahia left Iraq in 1992 he has been unable to attain citizenship from any Nation, having had his file in Iraq deleted he is neither Iraqi nor anything else, this has effectively rendered him stateless. His reward for standing up to the Hussein regime and speaking openly about his personal experiences with the CIA.
2 Books The Devil's Double & The Black Hole + Special 3-Disc Edition DVD of The Devil's Double movie.€33.95
When you purchase The Devil's Double and The Black Hole books, we will send you the movie as a free gift (€19.99 value)
In this video I answer the most popular questions that I have received through my website, emails and social media.
There are many perceptions of me, that I have made millions from my books and the movie, not true.
That since I fled Iraq my life has been safe, not true, either.. That the government of the country where I reside have provided me with protection and security, that's not true either, I have my own private security.
In my twenty one years in the West, I have not found democracy nor a country to call home and grant me citizenship, and so I am still stateless.
I could not and would not sell my soul, One man forced me to become something I wasn't and ruled my life, when I broke free of him I vowed never to be forced to do anything against my will again, be it by a single person or a country.
Television Son of Saddam tells the story of Latif Yahia, who was the body double for Saddam Hussein’s eldest son, Uday.
Director David Bartlett talks about the making of the film
Secrets of the son Director David Bartlett (left) had to gain Yahia’s trust through many conversations to tell the story of Saddam’s son Uday.
Lee Tamahori’s The Devil’s Double
(2011) gave us an inside view of the horrors and excess in Saddam Hussein’s household. Based on the eponymous book by Latif Yahia
, The Devil’s Double
told his story as the Fedai or bullet catcher of Saddam’s eldest son, Uday, who seems to be an all-round crazy psycho person. The super hot Dominic Cooper played both Uday and Latif (Uday was so much more eye catching) and the movie celebrated Eighties excess in every frame. There was drugs, sex and rock n roll and torture aplenty in the overripe film.
Inside story A scene from the film and below,Director David Bartlett
“That was classic Hollywood,” says director David Bartlett over the phone. Talking about Son of Saddam
, an episode on Banged Up Abroad
for National Geographic that he directed, Bartlett says: “This is very gritty. The styling is based on the Bourne films. There is a lot of handheld camera work. It is edgy and visceral.”
Talking about the difference between the film and the documentary, Bartlett explains that the two ends at different points and also Son of Saddam
has Latif facing the camera to tell his story. “Latif Yahia
is a man who chooses carefully who to open up to.
He is a very intelligent man, and has been through a lot of trouble and pain. He has written two books on his experiences, The Devil’s Double
and The Black Hole
and when Raw Television contacted him with a view to dramatising his life story, he was very keen to engage with us, on the grounds that we would faithfully represent his and his family’s plight. He is a relatively private man, but I gained his trust through many conversations, and we came to a position of mutual respect. From that position, Latif felt comfortable enough to open up very candidly and bravely in what turned out to be a very long interview in front of the camera.”
While most episodes on Banged up Abroad
feature people who are stuck in a foreign country, Son of Saddam
features Latif who was Iraqi in a different kind of prison in Iraq. “The series tells the story of survival when caught in difficult situations and Latif’s story is true representation of human spirit that refused to get bogged down by the situation.”
Like the movie, the same actor plays both the roles — the honest, good Latif and the evil psychotic Uday. “We needed either twin actors or the same actor playing both the roles.
Sam Vincenti played Uday and Latif. It was a terrific performance as quite often he had to act against himself. There was clever editing involved as well.”
Shot on the northern coast of Tunisia, in La Marsa principally, the feature is gripping for the window it offers into another world. Son of Saddam
will air on 5/September/2012, at 10 p.m. on National Geographic Channel.
George Bush may have had a tougher sell on the Iraq war were it not for Tony Blair.
UK support for military action in Syria is not in America's best interest
Lessons of Iraq show that British support should not be seen as a green light to American leaders to send in the troops.
The last time a British prime minister endorsed an American president's plans for military intervention, it resulted in the US invasion of Iraq – one of the worst foreign policy blunders in recent American history.
That is why last week's endorsement by David Cameron of a warning by Barack Obama that even the threat of chemical weapons by Syria could trigger a military intervention should be viewed with alarm on both sides of the Atlantic.
There is something in the psyche of Americans that gives British views on foreign policy more credit than they deserve. If the Brits say it is so, it must be so is the common reaction of many Americans to pronouncements by British leaders. Americans are inclined to believe their friends across the Atlantic, given their centuries of involvement with countries around the world, have acquired skills to deal with foreign policy issues that Americans – with barely a century of global domination – simply do not possess. This is simply not true.
While there may be some truth to this belief in British prowess in dealing with other countries, there is an overriding reason to not give British support too much credence: The UK's support is rarely based on facts on the ground and objective analysis. It is driven instead by a self-serving exaggerated view of the "special relationship" with the United States.
I have always believed that former President Bush would have had a very difficult time selling his unilateral invasion of Iraq to Americans had Prime Minister Blair refused to support American military plans.
Why then would Britain, America's closest ally, the co-inventor of modern Iraq, with intimate knowledge of, and deep historical ties to, the Middle East, and with its powerful understanding of Arabs and Islam, not have influenced its American ally's actions more wisely?
Dean Acheson, one of America's most gifted Secretaries of State, would have had a ready explanation for why it was not in Britain's best interest to oppose the United States' plans to invade Iraq.
Addressing a student conference at the US military academy, West Point, in 1962, he presciently said, "Great Britain has lost an empire and has not yet found a role. The attempt to play a separate power role, that is, a role apart from Europe, a role based primarily on a 'special relationship' with the United States … is about played out."
The American invasion of Iraq destroyed the delicate balance of power relationships involving Iran, Iraq, Turkey, Sunni, Shia, and Kurd. A balance that Iraq's ruthless dictator had maintained for years.
A precipitate collapse of the Assad regime in Syria would magnify this instability in the heart of the Middle East by, for instance, encouraging a push by Syrian Kurds for an independent Kurdish State – the worst nightmare of Turkey, one of America's closest allies in the Middle East. That is why Turkey, the country most affected by the mayhem in Syria (over 200,000 refugees have crossed into it for safety), is politically divided about militarily intervening in Syria.
And, American military involvement in Syria, would further damage the relationship between the United States and Russia, Syria's benefactor. That would doom American and Nato plans to remove US troops and material from the war in Afghanistan through Central Asia and Russia; leaving Pakistan as the only route out of the Afghan quagmire. Is that in American national interest?
If Britain wants to help re-engineer Syria, a country it helped to invent in the first place, it should be free to do so. But Americans would be wise to make it clear to their elected officials that they have no wish to intervene on one side of a civil war. America has other priorities for its blood and treasure, and they do not include another war in the Middle East.
In this closely fought US presidential election season when President Obama is being hammered by conservatives to act militarily in Syria, what the world did not need is a public declaration of UK support for US military intervention in Syria. The US has been down this road before, in Iraq. Does anyone really want to repeat that movie?