Saddam Hussein is dead.

God. I never thought I'd write those words.

CNN Breaking News: "Saddam Hussein is dead ... Iraqi TV stations report."

BBC news ticker: "Saddam Hussein executed by hanging, according to Iraqi media reports."

MSNBC Breaking News: "Reports: Saddam Hussein executed."

Saddam Hussein, deposed ruler of Iraq, was executed by hanging before dawn Saturday, Dec. 30 for crimes against humanity. He was handed from US to Iraqi custody Friday. US and Iraqi forces on high alert

December 30, 2006, 5:15 AM (GMT+02:00)

He said in an earlier letter he is willing to sacrifice himself for the Iraqi people and would die as a martyr. The Iraqi government was under considerable international pressure not to execute sentence. The former Iraqi ruler was condemned together with his half-brother Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikrity and the former chairman of the Baath revolutionary courts Awad Ahmad al Bandar. The pleas came from the European Union, the Vatican and some UN agencies.

US and Iraqi forces are on high alert and some areas are under curfew.

Iraq’s Baath warned Thursday of grave consequences if their leader goes to the gallows. An internet message said the US would be held responsible. “The Baath and the resistance are determined to retaliate in all ways and places that hurt America and its interests.” Retaliation was also threatened against the Iraqi High Tribunal which upheld the death sentence. The largely Sunni-Arab Baathists who dominate the insurgency vowed to shut down national reconciliation negotiations.

UPDATE: CNN televises American Muslims dancing in the street at the news of Saddam's death. Kudos to CNN for showing this!

MSNBC: 'DEARBORN, Mich. - Dozens of Iraqi-Americans gathered late Friday at a Detroit-area mosque to celebrate reports that Saddam Hussein had been executed, cheering and crying as drivers honked horns in jubilation.

Dave Alwatan wore an Iraqi flag around his shoulders and flashed a peace sign to everyone he passed at the Karbalaa Islamic Educational Center in this suburb of Detroit, a city that has one of the nation's largest concentrations of people with roots in the Middle East.

"Peace," he said, grinning and laughing. "Now there will be peace for my family." ...'

More at this link: Saddam Hussein.