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Last Updated: Wednesday, 23 July, 2003, 13:49 GMT 14:49 UK
Saddam's hated sons
Saddam Hussein's two sons were notorious for their brutality and became as loathed and feared as their father.

Qusay (left) and Uday Hussein
Flamboyant Uday (r) with his more reserved brother Qusay
The elder, Uday, was one of the regime's most hated figures, with a reputation for torture, murder, rape and corruption.

It is said his volatile behaviour was too much for his father - who turned to Qusay as his heir apparent.

Qusay did not have Uday's reputation for sadistic brutality, but he was still just as feared and considered quietly ruthless.

The brothers were blamed for some of the worst excesses of Saddam Hussein's regime.

Such was their power, the US placed Qusay second and Uday third on its pack of cards list of the 55-most wanted from the former regime.

Qusay rose to prime position after Uday reportedly fell from favour for killing his father's favourite food taster and bodyguard in the late 1980s.

Uday: Wild son

In time, Saddam relented and appointed Uday to various key positions - including head of Iraq's Olympic Committee, newspaper publisher, head of a TV network and the Iraqi Journalists Union.

Uday Hussein in 1996
Ran TV network and newspaper
Considered heir apparent until 1996 assassination attempt
Reputation as volatile and flamboyant

The 39-year-old also became head of the dreaded Saddam Fedayeen militia.

Flamboyant, excessive and - at nearly two metres (more than 6ft) tall - unmissable, Uday was known for his fast cars, high living and cruelty.

He had a reputation for summoning any girl or woman who caught his eye, and was frequently accused of rape and murder.

As head of the national football team, he would reportedly ring up players during half-time and threaten to cut off their legs. It is also said he kept a torture score card instructing what a player's fate should be after a game.

In 1996, Uday survived an assassination attempt but was left with a lodged bullet in his spine. He never fully recovered and walked with a cane.

After the fall of Baghdad, his palace was found to have a personal zoo, a million dollars' worth of drugs and alcohol and walls plastered with pictures of women downloaded from the internet.

Uday lost out as successor-designate after he bludgeoned his father's bodyguard to death at a party, shot one of his uncles in the leg and beat his brides from two brief marriages.

So 36-year-old Qusay came to the fore.

Qusay: Ruthless strategist

Known to idolise his father, Qusay adopted a similar image wearing military uniforms and sporting a trademark bushy moustache.

Qusay Hussein in 1997
Given key cities to defend in Iraq's war plan
Controlled elite Republican Guard
Was seen as heir apparent

Unlike Uday, he did not crave the limelight but behind his awkward demeanour was a man who could be just as brutal.

He ran the elite Republican Guard and controlled the internal security and intelligence - including the secret police force that suppressed opposition to the Baathist regime.

Qusay reportedly earned the respect of his father shortly after the end of the 1991 Gulf War in his dealing with the Shia Muslims and Marsh Arabs who rose up against the regime.

He was also suspected of launching and supervising a programme of "prison cleansing" that resulted in the mass executions of prisoners.

Time Magazine reported one witness who saw Qusay personally shoot at least four Shia Muslims after around 300 were rounded up in a field.

Little is known about the father-of-four's private life although it is thought he enjoyed a similarly lavish lifestyle as others in the inner circle and was rumoured to have a number of mistresses.

Like his brother, Qusay also survived assassination attempts - in 2001 and then in August 2002 when he was reportedly shot in his arm.

In May 2001, Qusay was given a leading position in the ruling Baath party. Many commentators in the Arab world cited this move as a clear sign that the struggle for the succession had been decided in his favour.

He was said to have been controlling the running of day-to-day affairs in Iraq, and was responsible for the protection of Baghdad and Saddam's home town of Tikrit during the 2003 war in Iraq.

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