A US-led coalition invaded Iraq in 2003 in order to remove the nation's President, Saddam Hussein from office - with the accusation being that the Middle-Eastern leader was harbouring weapons of mass destruction (WMDs). Although the presence of WMDs may have been wide of the mark to say the least, the true atrocities committed by Hussein during his time in office between July 1979 and April 2003 were brought to the fore by the invasion. This is a man who systematically ordered the genocide of thousands of ethnics Kurds, who drained the historical marshes in the south of Iraq in response to a rebellion, and who invaded Kuwait in order to try and claim a stranglehold on oil in the region. However, there was so much more to Hussein than merely a brutal dictator who appeared to pick fights with the Americans on more occasions than was advisable. For Hussein received a UNESCO award for improving living standards within Iraq, he offered to debate US President George W Bush live on television in a bid to prevent the Iraq War, and attempted to assassinate a former Iraqi Prime Minister but supposedly ruined the plot by firing too early. So here are 18 mind-blowing facts about Saddam Hussein, the former President of Iraq.