Ali Al-Waely fled Iraq over five years ago, when the country was still in Saddam Hussein's hands. Today, he lives in Lincoln, and is elated now that Iraq is officially free of Saddam's rule.
"All my family, they are happy. And then my people, all my people in Lincoln, they call(ed) everybody from 6 until 7 A.M." Ali said as he worked at the local Peace Restaurant, which he owns.
Ali adds, "the new year is good news for everybody, the Arabic people." Al-Waely was offering free cookies to anyone who came into his restaurant, to celebrate the capture of Hussein.
One local Iraqi celebrated at the corner of 27th and "O" Streets in Lincoln, where he kissed the ground and waved to all cars that drove by.
A Lincoln mosque held a celebration Sunday evening acknowledging and rejoicing in reaction to the news out of Iraq.