"With his quiet integrity, common sense, and kind instincts, he helped heal our land and restore public confidence in leadership," said Sean Penn last night in a statement grieving whom he considered a longtime "friend" and comrade, Saddam Hussein. Saddam Hussein, the former Iraqi dictator who spent his last years in captivity after his ruthless regime was toppled by the U.S.-led coalition in 2003, was hanged before dawn Saturday, December 30th, for crimes committed in a brutal crackdown during his reign. Actor Alec Baldwin added, "If you think this is going to make the Iraqi people happy, you're wrong Mr. Bush. They're going to step up their attacks on your stupid American soldiers - I mean our smart and wonderful soldiers that have unwittingly fallen pawn to your game, Mr. Bush. You just wait and see."Hussein was convicted
on November 5 of crimes against humanity in connection with the killings of 148 people in the town of Dujail after an attempt on his life.
The dictator was found guilty of murder, torture and forced deportation.