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Bindra: Dancing in the streets of Baghdad

CNN correspondent Satinder Bindra
CNN correspondent Satinder Bindra

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Iraq
Satinder Bindra
On the Scene

BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Word of the capture of toppled Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein triggered immediate street celebrations in the Iraqi capital Baghdad on Sunday -- people throwing candy and firing guns in the air.

CNN correspondent Satinder Bindra ventured out among the celebrating Iraqis and filed the following report.

BINDRA: I was standing in the street just in front of a television set here when the news came through, and about 200 people were gathered around it -- getting their first glimpse of Saddam as a U.S. captive. As soon as they saw his picture, people started celebrating, they started dancing, they started yelling.

Many people started calling Saddam "the devil" They said he "went like a woman." They said they didn't expect him to go without any resistance. They said if he had to go without a fight he should have surrendered to American forces many, many months ago.

There's a lot of noise on the street, a lot of cars blaring their horns. I am wearing a helmet because hundreds of people here are firing AK-47 rifles into the air. This is a typical Iraqi way of celebrating and even though there are feelings of great joy here, I must stress it's a bit dangerous because there are a lot of bullets flying into the air.

I also talked with some Iraqis about what Saddam's capture means for the ongoing insurgency. One Iraqi summed his views up this way: He said, "Game over."

Other Iraqis -- although perhaps it is too early to give a defining work on it -- are suggesting that the ongoing insurgency against the Americans will be very weakened. All Iraqis on the street consider this to be a defining and historic moment in Iraqi history.

There is definitely a sense on the street that Iraq will be a different place starting now. People are telling me here on the streets that a "new Iraq" is being built even as we speak. One of the biggest fears among Iraqis has been that there is no security. Now there is a sense on the street that things are turning around for the better. There is a sense and a feeling here that they will have a better life now.

Iraqis celebrate Sunday in Baghdad.
Iraqis celebrate Sunday in Baghdad.

I have noticed during the past two hours that more and more people are coming out into the streets. Let me describe a typical street scene here in Baghdad at the moment. People are distributing candy even as I stand here talking to you, people are stopping by and shoving candy into my hands. Some people are throwing candy up toward the sky. This is, again, a typical Iraqi way of celebrating. People are stopping traffic, stopping buses and putting candy into passengers' hands.

I saw a group of about 25 or 30 people carrying a huge banner that read 'Congratulations to all Iraqis." At least in this district where I am, there is a great sense of joy, of celebration.


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