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24 November 2009


Best regards.
Latif Yahia

20 November 2009

Hussein Body Double's Irish Plan

Saturday, 3 March 2007 7:31am UK

Latif Yahia is the kind of man who attracts plenty of curious

glances wherever he goes, writes Sky News reporter Enda Brady.

"Immaculately groomed and well spoken, he could be

a businessman heading to a conference at the Dublin

hotel where we meet.

But his incredible likeness to Saddam Hussein's sadistic son

Uday means he will always get attention.

Yahia went to the same Baghdad school as the dictator's son and

was regularly teased because he bore such a strong facial similarity to Uday.

Years later he was summoned to meet the Iraqi President and

informed that a great honour was to be bestowed upon him,

he was to become Uday's double - whether he liked it or not.

To make his appearance faultless, he claims Saddam forced him to undergo plastic surgery and then have coaching in how to imitate Uday.

If he didn't agree to it, his family would be harmed.

Yahia went on to spend four and a half years living a bizarre life of luxury, interspersed with assassination attempts by Shiite militia and occasional beatings from Uday.

He fled Iraq in 1991 after the first US-led invasion, made his way to Kurdistan and eventually ended up in Austria. For the past decade he has lived in Ireland where he has an Irish partner and three Irish-born children.

"I just want to live a peaceful life and put the past behind me, but the Irish government won't grant me citizenship," Yahia told Sky News.

"When I saw Uday and Qusay (Saddam's other son) dead on the TV news in 2003 I smashed the screen I was so angry, they had cheated justice. I wanted them to pay for all they had done. Now I'm paying a price too."

Yahia has now written a book about his experiences and while it may read like a best-selling work of fiction, he inisists it is all true.

"Writing has helped me but in some ways I don't think I will ever be able to shake off the shadow of Uday and his family," he said."

This is a very interesting article that I read, I thought that I would share it with you, just something to think about.
Sacred surprise behind Israeli hospital

The marble Shiite prayer area at Israel's Barzilai Medical Center.
Special to The Times, May 21, 2008
From the Los Angeles Times
By Batsheva Sobelman

JERUSALEM — The city of Ashkelon has been in the headlines lately, and not for its pretty beaches. The city of 110,000 has sadly joined Israels southern front line as rockets fired from the Gaza Strip improve in range and technology.

Last week, a rocket hit a shopping mall in town; the dozens of injured were treated at the city's Barzilai Medical Center.

It turns out the hospital grounds contain an interesting bit of history: a site holy to certain Shiite Muslims, thousands of whom have come to pray there over the years. Ashkelon has 5,000 years of recorded history, but when the hospital was first built in 1961, nothing indicated that the hill out back was anything special.

The consecration of the site dates back to the early days of Islam. The decades that followed the death of the prophet Muhammad in 632 were marked by a bitter and bloody dispute over succession, a conflict that ultimately marked the split between Sunni and Shiite Muslims.

In a nutshell, Ali, Muhammad's cousin and son-in-law, was passed over for the position of caliph -- leader of the young Muslim nation. Ali's followers eventually rebelled, touching off years of conflict.

After Ali was assassinated in 661, his sons Hasan and Hussein carried on his struggle. Hussein and his small rebel army were slaughtered in 680 in what is now the Iraqi holy city of Karbala. His head was delivered as a trophy to Yazid, the victorious caliph, in Damascus, while his body remained in Karbala. Shiites commemorate Hussein\'s death annually in the intense day of mourning known as Ashura.

Both Karbala and Damascus became sites of Shiite pilgrimages. Sunni rulers, displeased with the phenomenon, decided to relocate Hussein\'s head to the far edge of the kingdom -- Ashkelon. It remained there for several centuries, until the legendary Muslim leader Saladin sent the head to Egypt for safekeeping from the invading Crusaders.

What was once the far end of an ancient Muslim kingdom is now a grassy mound behind an Israeli hospital.

A millennium after Hussein's head was removed from Ashkelon, the site is still revered by Shiite offshoots, mostly from India and Pakistan. The pilgrims include those from countries with no diplomatic ties with Israel, hospital officials say.

About a decade ago, a Shiite spiritual leader arrived at the hospital with an unusual request : to be allowed to erect a prayer area for the pilgrims.

"How do you know this is the site?" asked Dr. Ron Lobel, deputy director of the medical center.

"I walked out to the mound with him," Lobel said. "He took out a shovel and started digging. To my astonishment, a meter or so deep, he exposed the cornerstone of the ancient mosque that had been built where the head had been buried, and was later destroyed by the Crusaders."

With the hospital's blessing, the worshipers imported the most valued marble in India. The prayer area, built seven or eight years ago, is open to the pilgrims.

"They are quiet, peaceful people. They come in silence, sometimes barely uttering a sound," said Lobel, who has become the resident expert on the subject. "An island of Shiite Muslim prayer in an Israeli hospital in a Jewish state. It really is unique."

11 November 2009

"The Devil's Double"
Lee Tamahori

Lee Tamahori arrived in Hollywood having helmed "Once Were Warriors"
and then wasted his talents on films like "xXx: State Of The Union" and "Next." Well his next film, about the late Uday Hussein's body double, actually sounds pretty interesting. Titled "The Devil's Double" it's based on the true story of Latif Yahia, a dead ringer for Uday, who was forced against his will stand in for the hated, crazed and sadistic son of Saddam in potentially dangerous situations. As a result, he got a first hand look inside the wild world of the Husseins and went on to publish three books about his experiences, two of which - I Was Saddam’s Son and The Devil’s Double - will serve as the foundation of the film. The picture will begin shooting in January in Malta, and Dominic Cooper is the first confirmed cast member, while Ludivine Sagnier is currently circling the project.

09 November 2009

Cooper to play The Devil’s Double for Tamahori

Dominic Cooper will star and Ludivine Sagnier is in talks to join him in Corsan’s thriller The Devil’s Double based on the true story of Uday Hussein’s body double that is set to begin shooting in January in Malta.

Lee Tamahori (Die Another Day, XXX: State Of The Union) will direct to join what Corsan CEO Paul Breuls described as a taut action tale about the extraordinary life of Latif Yahia.

Corsan World Sales is talking to buyers here at AFM and the Paradigm Motion Picture Finance Group is representing domestic rights.

Yahia, a dead ringer for Saddam Hussein’s sadistic and widely despised son, was forced against his will to stand in for Uday in potentially dangerous situations. Through his role, Yahia gained access to Hussein’s inner sanctum and witnessed corruption, violence and debauchery.

Michael Thomas adapted the screenplay from Yahia’s books I Was Saddam’s Son and The Devil’s Double.

Cooper currently appears alongside Carey Mulligan and Peter Sarsgaard in An Education and his credits include Mamma Mia!, The Duchess and The History Boys. He will next be seen in Stephen Frears’ Tamara Drewe.

04 November 2009

Message From My friend to the World

Consider this, my friend: You are where you are . . . think about it; we are determined by where we are, what we expose ourselves to, our environment. Not just our genetics. Now consider: You are what you eat. Okay now, if what you eat is not grown where you are, what are you??? This site is the realization and release of my 50 years study, work, sojourn on this planet. For 20 of those years I traveled to some two dozen countries, and to a host of Indigenous Nations not recognized by the United Nations (a real Travesty!) working on community-based projects and teaching ecological design, environmental restoration and self-sufficient organic home gardening. In 2005, as part of its 2020 Vision Programme, the United Nations released the Millenium Ecosystems Assessment (MEA). Some 1500 top world class scientists from some 95 countries collaborated over a 5 year period to assess the world’s ecosystems – from Mangroves and Estuaries, to Temperate and Sub-Tropical Rainforests to Savannahs and Prairies to deserts and Tundra. They came to the startling conclusion that we have already irreversibly damaged or destroyed or at least impacted fully two-thirds of the worlds ecosystems. They reckoned one-thirds of the damage has been caused by Industrial Agriculture (the fat cat culprits know who they are and should be ashamed). The MEA got a total of 3 days world media attention. EcosystemsServices are those services to humankind that Nature provides free of charge. Who says there is no “Free Ride”? There is not a government budget that accounts for ecosystems services. There is not a business plan out there, except for new forests fund, and maybe a handle full of other enlightened long-range vision companies, that has a balance sheet for Nature. What do we mean by ecosystems services, in a nutshell? Clean air, pure water, live soil, carbon, biodiversity, hydrological mediation, climate mediation, seeds, oils, foods, medicines, habitat for All of God’s Creatures, and billions of micro-organisms we know nothing about. My mission is to help people understand their “ecological footprint.” That is, each of us, over our lifetime, uses up a certain amount of all these resources. It is our imperative responsibility to take account of ourselves. We cannot do that without understanding, as the Ancient Greeks did, and all of the Indigenous cultures I have ever been exposed to, that we are all of us connected to the Living Planet (GAIA), and to each other. And so I offer this effort, this mission, this passion, this love, this determination to all those souls there who are awake, all my brothers and sisters, and indeed All My Relations . . .I hope you will take the time to study what this site has to offer and to educate yourself to your duty to the Creator, The Great Spirit, Allah, the Heavenly Father, the Mother Earth Goddess (Gaia) or whatever you choose to call and worship as The One God. If you can help with funding, social networking, or in any capacity please let me know. Thank you. Peace, love, light and laughter be with you. Thomas

01 November 2009

Michael McDowell the Saddam Hussein of Ireland ?

There is one thing that we all share each year, that is reflection, each New Year we refelect upon the year that has passed and as we ourselves grow older, we reflect upon our lives, what we have achieved and our goals for the future.

As Frank Sinatra once sang “regrets, I have a few, but then again, too few to mention”

There are certain points in your life that are integral to the person that you have become, rights of passage, character building events and in my case life changing situations, would I be the person I am today had I not had my life?

Of course not!

I make no apologies for my life, it has not been all good nor has it been all bad, it could not be everyones life because everyone would not have survived it. I am grateful for my life, in that I am still here to live it. I can wake each morning to the certainty that I am loved.

What more could a man ask for?

Well, if you were to really push me… a country to call home would be nice.

For many years, I roamed Europe and the rest of the world, it didn’t matter to me much and at times I quite enjoyed the impermanence of it all, I actually loved Hotels and the fact that each day the room was scrubbed clean to appear as if no-one had been there before you.

Maybe it is age, or actually finding somewhere that I would like to call home that has changed that for me.

Ireland in 1997, seemed so ideal, small but fairly modern, Europe but different, friendly people and a burgeoning economy for business.

Now, that is just a memory for me, having just made my third application for Irish citizenship ( will the third time be a charm for me?) it is getting through my thick skull that I am not necessarily wanted here. I grin weakly at people from all over the world that assume that I received citizenship in Europe the moment I put my foot outside Iraq ( or a team of bodyguards for that matter), no, I’m afraid that part of the screenplay didn’t make it into the final cut.

And why have I been refused Irish citizenship twice, I hear you ask, well on the first application which took five years to process and was seemingly the longest case on file, it seems that I applied three months too early. It only took the threat of a High court action against Mr. McDowell to make a decision for them after five years to point that out.

(Irish naturalisation law, deemed at the time that a decision would be made on any case within six to eighteen months of application, I waited five years, it’s quite possible that I could still be waiting)

Obviously it was the only excuse they could come up with.

I should like to point out at this time that I do not have a criminal record, not even a parking ticket.

In the Autumn of 2001 three black GMCs pulled up outside my hall door, I instantly recognised the men in suits and sunglasses (yes, in real life they do dress like they’re in the movies) As I opened my door and invited them in, it seemed almost like De ja vu.

They were American, they were from the CIA and they had a proposition for me, do remember that the invasion of Iraq did not start until March of 2003.

I was offered a job, to work for them in Ireland, as usual I told them were to go and as usual they told me that they would make my life here hell and I should never think that I would get anything from Ireland.

Maybe this time they were telling the truth.

My second application which was lodged shortly after the first refusal was met with a letter from the Dept of Justice stating that I should not contact them until early 2008, it was 2006 at the time, infuriated, I made my case on the Gerry Ryan radio show, in which I called upon the then Minister for Justice Michael McDowell to meet with me face to face in the radio station to discuss the matter on air and let the listeners decide if I were fit to be an Irish citizen. Unsurprisingly he declined my invitation, but did find the time in his hectic shedule to refuse my second application “at the Ministers discretion” two weeks later. It seems that at some point Michael McDowell had changed immigration and nautralization laws to disallow appeals of his decision and also naturalization through marriage to an Irish National.

But I was free to apply again, which I did.

It is also noteworthy that any application no matter how complete/incomplete can be accepted or declined by the Minister for Justice, he has the final say, no matter what and can grant or refuse as he wishes. He at his discretion can waive certain requirements to issue naturalisation or in reverse can refuse an application simply because “ In the ministers view and upon reccomendations made to him , the minister does not feel that you would be a good citizen for Ireland”

I have received my letter confirming receipt of my application and have also been told that I may contact the citizenship dept, but anyone who has had the misfortune of trying to make that call knows that the chances of getting through are the same as winning the Irish lottery.

On the one occasion that I did get through,as soon as I gave my name I was immediately put on hold while the person on the other end went in search of a supervisor. The lady in question informed me that because of a backlog of 17,800 cases it could be “ Two and a half, three maybe four years before we get to look at your case.”

Now when I sit in a district court on any given day and see some of the people who have been granted citizenship to this fair land, who cannot speak English well, write their names or on one particular occasion didn’t actually know what it was they were there for, getting citizenship, I do ask myself why?

Is it so wrong to be educated, slightly famous/infamous (you choose) be married to an Irishwoman and have three Irish born children?

Or maybe I should just forget about it and find somewhere that might actually want me.

I think the latter is the better option, don’t you?

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This a letter between the Taoiseach (prime minister) of Ireland and the Minister of Justice, Equality and Law reform, Mr Michael McDowell. One of twenty, the Taoiseach Mr. Bertie Aherne represented my interests in all cases, you can see that the Taoiseach had no influence over his Minister with regard to my application for Naturalisation.
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Me and Ex prime minister of Ireland Mr.Bertie Aherne.
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This is a letter from the Minister of Justice Mr McDowell to me, I had asked for a personal meeting to explain my case, he declined to meet me and as you can see from the letter itself that he asked me not to contact his office until the first half of 2008, the send date on the letter was 2006.
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This is a letter from Minister McDowell informing the Taoiseach Mr. Bertie Aherne of his decision to decline my application for naturalization, the decision was made just weeks after I appeared on the National radio station on a famous radio show The Gerry Ryan radio show, I had been speaking to Gerry about my applications for citizenship and the fact that the Minister Mr. McDowell had declined to meet with me and I had asked Gerry to again ask the Minister if he would meet with me on the show he declined, I pointed out on the show that the Minister's dept was full of corruption and I had the proof, the Minister chose not to defend or refute my allegations. The Minister did however find the time to look at my application and refuse it, even though from his previous letter he assured me that due to the backlog of 7,000 cases in front of mine he could not look at my case until the first half of 2008. Mr. McDowell lost his Ministry in the 2007 Elections and also lost his seat in The Dail (Irish Parliament).

Will the game of cat and mouse between me and the Dept of Justice ever end?
Has my file with a big black X just been passed from one Minister to the next or will the new Minister for Justice read my file with an open mind?
People have said that I am a politician, this is not true, politicians have two and three faces, I cannot, I cannot be like them I speak my mind, it is something that I have always done and cannot change now and would not want to. I believe in freedom of speech, justice and equality for all, I would just like to find some.
According to Irish Law if you are resident in the state of Ireland for five years you are entitled to apply for naturalization, (I am here nearly 11 years).
If you are married to an Irish citizen for three years or more you are entitled to apply for naturalization ( my Irish wife and I are married for seven years, we have three Irish born children)
Under the terms of legislation for naturalization, a refusal can be made if you have a criminal record, I do not, I don't even have a parking ticket.
When Mr. McDowell took his position as Minister for Justice he repealed several laws with regard to naturalization, you cannot appeal his decision in the High Court which was the case, marriage to an Irish citizen is no longer a reason for naturalization, having Irish born children no longer a guarantee of Irish naturalization and if both parents are non-nationals the child if born after 1st January 2005 is not automatically an Irish citizen.
Some of these changes are fair others not, but at the end of the day the Minister for Justice has the power to grant or refuse any application at his discretion no matter what the circumstances. Mr McDowell also refused to sign off on an anti-racism law to which most of Europe subscribe. Is this democratic? Or was Mr.
McDowell the Saddam Hussein of Ireland?
Under Mr. McDowell's watchful eye crime in Ireland surged by 28% racism in Ireland grew by 32% these figures are confirmed by Amnesty International which I am a member of.

Best regards,
Latif Yahia