Edge of War
Saddam vs. The Ayatollah
In the early 80s, Saddam Hussein and Ayatollah Khomeini vie for military and spiritual supremacy in the Persian Gulf.
The Persian Gulf. Ancient. Rich. Dangerous. And from the dawn of time, home to brash and brutal rulers. This is the story of two such leaders – with a deep and deadly hatred for each other. These are the events that lead them to battle. This is the beginning of the Iran/Iraq War.
In Iraq, strongman Saddam Hussein is happy hosting the exiled Khomeini when the Ayatollah is making trouble for the Shah of Iran. But when Khomeini and his Shi’ite brethren agitate for revolution inside Iraq itself, Saddam tosses the cleric out.
Hussein continues to consolidate power within Iraq – terrorizing friend and foe alike. His murderous secret police enthusiastically dispatch his deadly decrees. Pretending to be devout, the secular Saddam casts himself as the new big man in the Arab world.
In 1979, Ayatollah Khomeini returns from exile in France to take total power in Iran, enjoying a jubilant welcome from Iranians of all political stripes. Professing to be a man of God, Khomeini soon reveals a darker and deadlier face.
When Khomeini sees his Shi’ite brethren being brutally evicted from Iraq by Saddam’s sycophants, he grows increasingly hostile – attacking Saddam’s embassies around the world. The promise of eternal bliss makes bold his extremist followers.
In this tale of empires and extremes, of killers and Korans, of God and guns – no one is spared. Death is no deterrent for he who does not fear death. And so nearly a million people die, turning the ancient desert sand red with blood.