This Happened - April 9: Saddam Hussein Statue Crashes Down
The photos of the Saddam Hussein statue being toppled were iconic images of the fall of the regime of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein on this day in 2003. U.S. forces entered Baghdad and toppled a statue of Saddam Hussein in Firdos Square and the image of the statue falling became a powerful symbol of the end of Hussein's regime.
Get This Happened straight to your inbox ✉️ each day! Sign up here.
Who photographed the Saddam Hussein statue being toppled?
This was one of several memorable images of the Saddam Hussein statue being toppled, taken by Associated Press photographer Jerome Delay. Delay was among a group of journalists who were present at Firdos Square. His photograph stood out because of the U.S. soldier in the foreground at the moment the statue crashes to the ground.
What was the significance of the Saddam Hussein statue being toppled?
The statue had long been a symbol of Hussein's oppressive regime, and its destruction represented the end of that regime. The event was seen as a turning point in the war and as a sign of the liberation of the Iraqi people.
Was the toppling of the Saddam Hussein statue spontaneous or planned?
The toppling of the Saddam Hussein statue was not entirely spontaneous, but it was not entirely planned either. U.S. Marines had taken control of Firdos Square earlier in the day and had positioned a tank near the statue. Iraqi civilians who had gathered in the square to celebrate the fall of Hussein's regime were encouraged by the Marines to take action against the statue. The crowd then pulled down the statue with ropes and sledgehammers.
What happened to the statue of Saddam Hussein after it was taken down?
The statue was dragged through the streets of Baghdad by U.S. Marines and Iraqi civilians. The head of the statue was later removed and the body was taken away. The fate of the statue is not entirely clear, but it is believed to have been melted down and recycled. Some parts of the statue, including the head, have been preserved and are on display in museums and other locations around the world.
- Saddam, Putin, Maduro: How Dictators See Their Oil Differently ›
- This Happened—December 13: End Of The Road For The Butcher Of Baghdad ›
- Origins Of ISIS, Imagining If Saddam Was Still In Power ›