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Jack Rice is a criminal defense trial lawyer who provides legal advice to those charged with crimes in Federal and Minnesota State courtrooms.


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Why Am I Sleeping in Saddam's Palace?

March 9, 2006
11:16 p.m. Local Time
Just West of Baghdad in one of Saddam Hussein's Palaces

I know that I have used the term surreal a lot lately. I guess I can't really help it. Since coming to Iraq, I regularly have to pinch myself. After all, I'm just me.

How does a guy who grew up without connections, wealth or power end up sitting in a 40 foot by 40 foot bedroom in one of Saddam Heussein's palaces inside Iraq. It seems so wrong at so many different levels.

Working in Saddam's Palace

I walked into his bedroom and looked at the bed that he occasionally slept in. Weird. Very weird.

This Palace is one of the smaller ones in which he used to conduct business. It sits right on the edge of a lake the is to this day stocked full of fish. The Palace is covered in marble and as I sit in this room, I can't help help but continue to pinch myself.

In the middle of this extremely large bedroom in which I sit working ia a massive crystal chandalier. The room also contains large gaudy furniture.

Everything is this place seemed to be designed for one purpose - to impress. And while it appears very nice, a lot of it is kind of cheap junk.

Of course, the terrible part, as a Marine Corps Captain said while we coming in here, "what is most repulsive is that he was building all of this while his own people starved."

Tonight, I will sleep in this Palace. If any place has ghosts, I suspect this is the kind of place they would congregate.