Saddam Hussein's bronze buttock expected to leave collectors over the moon

 

 

 

Saddam Hussein, onetime dictator in Iraq, suffered a number of indignities as his regime fell. Whilst the most important moment might have been his actual capture sometime after the Western allies reached Baghdad, the image which sticks in the mind is the toppling of his statue in the main square.

Now the statue is to be the source of another indignity for the dictator - one he would not have wanted to see - as part of the towering monument's backside is to be offered for sale.

Saddam Hussein offers to shake hands with his adoring people

Former SAS soldier Brian Ely, who was in Iraq with journalists at the time, decided to take a souvenir of the statue. Using a crowbar he removed a piece of about two foot square from the monument's hindquarters.

Ely hadn't intended to take such a big piece, and had difficulty transporting it home. He had to pay £385 in excess baggage - and that was after having to convince Kuwaitis that the bum wasn't plunder, but instead a piece of armour for his vehicle.

It will be sold off at Hansons in Derbyshire. The estimate is £3,000-5,000, but Ely believes that it will sell for more and we agree. As a unique and offbeat piece of history it is likely to achieve a five-figure sum and remain valuable.

Hansons have sold some fascinating and valuable items in recent times, including a Qing Dynasty Chinese vase for £192,000 ($302,000) in the spring, but perhaps nothing quite like this. Charles Hanson told us:

"It is a modern piece of history caught in a bronze work of art which altered the course of modern times. We hope it will be purchased by a national institution".

Saddam Hussein's buttock will be sold at The Mackworth Hotel in Derby on Thursday, October 27 with the money raised going to injured servicemen.

 

Check out our blog for a look at another dictator's self-aggrandising monument: Colonel Gaddafi's golden fist.

 

 

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