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Saddam Files Friend Of The Court Brief, Supports Milosevic
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THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS - Another communication from Saddam Hussein has surfaced, but it contains no religious or militaristic rhetoric. It is instead a 38-page amicus curiae -- or "friend of the court" -- brief in support of Slobodan Milosevic. The brief was delivered to The Hague by FedEx. The tracking route shows it started its course in a drop box inside Baghdad's so-called "Green Zone". Forensic experts are now determining if Hussein himself packaged the materials.

"The court will hear the legitimate communication of any person that can express a vested interest in the trial. Certainly Mr. Hussein, if the communication indeed originates with him, would be interested in how Mr. Milosevic's trial is conducted and what his sentence will eventually be," said Judge Alphons Orie of the War Crimes Tribunal. "Some of the points he makes are colored by his own experiences, of course. 'Leniency is due any man that has shown himself to be a man of power,' for instance, is not a helpful legal argument. But we are giving it a fair reading."

Milosevic has been silent about the brief. He was provided a copy before the judges themselves had been given the opportunity to read it. We are told there is thought to be no exculpatory content.

"We must be careful how we characterize the term 'innocent civilians'," the brief says in part. "Obviously, this is a play by Hussein to acclimate the court to his way of thinking before his inevitable day there himself. This is not a selfless act in support of a fellow dictator," said an unnamed CIA source, "He's hoping to stack the deck."

The brief carries no legal weight since its authenticity cannot be verified, but it will be entered into the trial record.
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