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Lets remember: USA gave Saddam green light to invade Kuwait


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#21 NomDeGuerre

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Posted 27 March 2003 - 04:52 PM

its nice to see you boys playing tennis with one another. But how come the score always remains 'Love-Love'?
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#22 RRBum

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Posted 27 March 2003 - 05:06 PM

Perhaps the rat is Sadaam himself. He was after all, a long-time CIA asset. Is anyone allowed to leave the CIA alive?

For the life of me, I cannot understand why he destroyed a large number of Iraqi missiles which could now have been put to good use against the invaders!

rrb
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#23 SloboFan

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Posted 27 March 2003 - 05:13 PM

Yes, I agree with SmallMind.

I don't think Glaspie is ignorant or stupid.
The invasion intentions were clear. Glaspie had to be informed
about it, and about the US official position about it. She made it clear that the US was neutral. And this was not her personal oppinion, but the US official oppinion.


Mmmmh, I am starting to understand:
according to Aziz, Iraq was trapped. Kuwait, the AUE, and USA were decided to destroy Iraqs economy.
Then, Iraq had 2 choices:
-To stay still, and die
-To launch a desperate attack, and, later, die because of the retaliation.

And, it seems that Glaspie told Saddam: we don't mind if you chose the 1st option or the 2nd option (we will kill you anyway).

So maybe Aziz is right: that meeting was irrelevant because both sides already knew each others' intentions.
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#24 SloboFan

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Posted 27 March 2003 - 07:15 PM

ok, I have read the entire interview with Tarik Aziz;
the link posted by Porky before:

http://www.pbs.org/w...ral/aziz/2.html


it is very interesting. I recommend everyone to read it. :)
It seems that the Saddam regime is not a US puppet regime.
I am not sure about Saddam himself...
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#25 smartcode

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Posted 27 March 2003 - 10:29 PM

Lets remember: USA gave Saddam green light to invade Kuwait

Then we can say it loudly America was a partner of Saddam Hussain in invading Kuwait. Fool Kuwaitis dont like to think in this matter.
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#26 SmallMind

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Posted 27 March 2003 - 10:31 PM

Originally posted by Diogenes
Oddly enough, Kuwait twice voted to join Iraq in past years, but Iraq turned them down both times. Since then, it would seem that both parties have changed their minds.



Do you have any further information on this? I highly doubt this, bush had a big say in putting his friend into power in Kuwait and its Independence from britain and I dont think he would have been happy to loose it all to some dictator in Iraq.



Interestingly enough I have lived in Kuwait and we were always afraid of Saddam, there used to dead soldiers all the time. It was great because we got the entire day off from school. I doubt any one would have willingly voted to join a country that used to kill border guards systematically and with constant mortan fire across the border. In fact the anti-iraqi rhetoric bordered on paranoia. You think anti-americanism on here is bad, you haven't seen anti-iraqi propaganda in Kuwait.
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#27 porky

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Posted 27 March 2003 - 10:48 PM

"bush had a big say in putting his friend into power in Kuwait"

This guy just makes up stuff as he goes along. Must be the biggest liar on the board. Kuwait became independent in 1961. But the Emirs are heriditary, long before that. Bush wasn't even in government in 1961. So where does this crap come from?

He makes it up. A very small mind, indeed.
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#28 SloboFan

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Posted 28 March 2003 - 06:23 AM

@ Diogenes:

Porky provided a good link:
an interview with Ttarik Aziz. He explains everything.
http://www.pbs.org/w...ral/aziz/2.html

According to Aziz, the Glaspie interview was irrelevant. Of course, Glaspie gave a green light, but the Iraqis already knew USA would retaliate.
But Iraq had no choice: USA-Kuwait wanted to destroy Iraq's economy, not only by slant drilling, but dropping the oil price.

Iraq decided to attack the enemy. It was kind of a suicide attack.
Aziz says they knew very well that the enemy was USA, not Kuwait.

So it seems that the Glaspie interview caused no effect on Saddam. It seems that Saddam interviewed Glaspie as a last resort to solve problems peacefully. A few days later, there were meetings with the Kuwaitis, but failed. Then, Saddam invaded Kuwait.

Read this Aziz interview. It is very enlightening.


@smartcode:

read this interview, you too. What Aziz says makes sense. It seems that he is not in drugs. ;)
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#29 SloboFan

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Posted 28 March 2003 - 06:48 AM

Sorry, the interview has 3 pages.
The first one is this:

http://www.pbs.org/w...ral/aziz/1.html
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#30 SmallMind

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Posted 28 March 2003 - 09:57 AM

Originally posted by Diogenes
Smartcode: "Then we can say it loudly..."

Say it as loudly as you want. That still doesn't make it true.

Smallmind: The comment about Kuwait voting to join Iraq was an aside tossed out by an historian on one of the TV talk shows. I wish the interviewer had examined the topic more fully, but she didn't. I suspect it may have been shortly after WWI when Europe was carving up the Ottoman Empire, and before oil was discovered in the region.



Well I am sure the actual people who LIVED there had no say in things. It was a colony. Most gulf states got their independance in the 50's and 60's. In fact they were all using british indian currency into the 70's. How does people in colonies get a say in things? Let alone a vote in things.


Thanks porky for the compliments, none of your revisionist verions of history will change things. You can teach your kids what you think should have happened and we will teach our kids what did happen.
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#31 SmallMind

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Posted 29 March 2003 - 12:53 AM

The UN did not give the green light to the US to invade Iraq no matter how YOU spin it.
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#32 SmallMind

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Posted 31 March 2003 - 05:00 PM

Originally posted by Qiqo
1. Reagan supplied Saddam through Rumsfeld with all the WMD cookies he wanted.

2. Bush senior pressed Kuwait to dump oil on the world market to create tension in the region (Iraq lost zillions of hard needed income), inviting Iraq to invade its former Iraqi soil (the Brits gave away), Kuwait. Meanwhile telling Iraq the US would sit back if they moved in.

3. But of course the US didn't. Part of the oil dump plan was the invasion by Iraq of Kuwait and the US coming to the rescue. That military operation was planned months before Iraq invaded Kuwait.

4. The moment Iraq invaded Kuwait Powell flew to Saudi Arabia and presented false satelite pictures suggesting the Iraqis were now preparing to invade Saudi Arabia. And the Saudis invited the US (as planned) to protect them. The next day US troops started to land in Saudi Arabia. As they had been on call for months.

5. So the Gulf War started and US planes killed about 200.000 Iraqi civilians. Then the US invited an uprising against Saddam and stopped Schwarzkopf a day before he would have annihilated the Republican Guard, ending the Saddam regime. Leaving the Republican Guard and the Iraqi regime intact to kill a few hundred thousand more Iraqis the US left out in the cold. As planned.

And now another Republican Party puppet thought it was again time to deploy a scheme for renewing US dominance in the region. Again not caring how many victims it will cost. The Middle East is the United States playground, or so they believe. Who was it that said "Oil is too important to leave it to the Arabs"? Must have been an American. Well, oil is too important to leave it to the American Baath party. I hope both Baath parties will eat each other this time. And one of them seems to have the right appetite this time!
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#33 SmallMind

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Posted 10 April 2003 - 07:39 PM

Could the russians have seen all the documents the Iraqi's took form Kuwait on their dealings with the CIA and how to kill Iraqi leaderships? As well as hoe they tried to crash the Iraqi economy to get the Iraqi infrastructure and oil fields in a default?







Russian intelligence has officially denied reports that diplomats who left Baghdad last week took with them Saddam's secret archive, saying this allegation was being made to justify the US attack on the diplomatic convoy last week.

However, the Russian general speaking by phone to Al-Jazeera said his claims were based on the cooperation of Saddam and a group of his close officials with the United States during the Iran-Iraq war and encouragement for Saddam to invade Kuwait in 1991.


http://english.aljaz...3&parent_id=258
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#34 SmallMind

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Posted 10 April 2003 - 08:11 PM

Well if you look deeper they were doing all that to bankrupt Iraq and get the Iraqi oil and infrastructure in the default.


But if the russians got all this stuff it would be big leverage on the US knowing how the CIA and bush/cheeny set it all up. thats why I thought it strange they would fire on the Russian convoy. Just some tech on helicopters and tanks would not be worth the fallout of doing something like that.
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#35 SmallMind

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Posted 11 April 2003 - 01:02 PM

A Bit of the History of the British Empire and Iraq
11.04.2003 [11:39]


Let me mention the culmination of British conquests from the 15th to the early 20th century: the conquest in Africa of the Transvaal and the Orange Free State, populated by the Boers, Africans of Dutch descent.

In the 18th century, the Netherlands, from where the Boers came, was not less free and was more civilized than Britain, and hence the Boers refused to understand why they should become part of the British Empire, to be liberated and civilized by the British. Since they could not resist the British armed forces in regular war, they began guerrilla war.

Then, in 1901, as Winston Churchill, a staunch champion of the British Empire (he was against the independence of India), wrote, in 1957, 'every man, woman, and child was swept [by the British invaders] into concentration camps.' This is when and where the notorious term of the 20th century originated.

Churchill also notes that 'the years of the war saw a surge of patriotism among the vast majority of the British people.' Those who were against the war in which the entire civilian population was put into concentration camps were just traitors (they were called 'Boers').

In the 20th century, the conquests of the British Empire ceased and the empire disintegrated. Thus, India became independent, contrary to Churchill's wishes. The owners of Soviet Russia supported any country or movement fighting against the West. The Soviet military support of North Vietnam ensured its victory.

Of course Britain had to grant independence to India. Imagine that Britain had not done so. Owing to Soviet military aid to an Indian uprising against the British, India would have become dozens or hundreds of 'Vietnams' in which millions or dozens of millions of British soldiers would have perished.

Curiously, Stalin was the 'world's first statesman to recognize the independence of Israel.' Many Israelis, such as Golda Meir, decided that Stalin was the best friend of Jews. Great was their disappointment when Stalin began preparations for his, Stalin's, Final Solution, and only his death in 1953 saved Russian Jews.

Since the Soviet empire had collapsed, 'the majority of the British people' decided in 2003 to relive those good old times of the British Empire and to liberate and civilize Iraq. The previous British occupation of Iraq started in 1914.

The Iraqi (Mesopotamian) civilization is 5,000 years old. But in 1914, the British troops came to Iraq to liberate and civilize it. Ruling a vast empire from Baghdad in the 8th and 9th centuries was the Caliph. However, the British came to give Iraq freedom or liberty.

Now, freedom or liberty in England is the limited or restricted monarchy - constitutional monarchy, as it is called, though there is no constitution in England. So Iraq needed first of all a king, as in England, to restrict or limit his power. In 1921 Faisal I was crowned in Baghdad. And so on.

The British thus kept liberating and civilizing Iraq for 22 years. Did Iraq change sociopolitically? Not if we listen to the complaints about Saddam Hussein's rule.

But what was before Saddam Hussein? In 1941 the British re-invaded Iraq to put down a pro-Nazi revolt led by Premier Rashid Ali. In 1958 Faisal II was assassinated in a coup that brought to power a military junta, which was overthrown in 1963 by the Ba'ath Socialist Party. The latter was ousted out of power in 1967 by a new 'president,' who was ousted by a junta led by a major- general in June 1968, whereupon Saddam Hussein came to power in July 1968.

The British had long lost all interest in Iraq, but the U.S. political establishment sighed with relief. Just think of it! Compared with the medieval Islamic fanatic Ayatollah Khomeini in neighboring Iran, Hussein was a modern secular statesman, a rarity in the Islamic world. He was a socialist, which was certainly something European and not Islamic! But while the Ba'ath Socialist Party had been flirting with Soviet Russia, he purged Communists and in 1978 had 21 of them executed.

No wonder the United States supplied Hussein with chemical and biological weapons for his war against Ayatollah Khomeini. At that time biological and chemical weapons were called 'a poor country's nuclear bombs' and thought to be quite proper for a small poor country like Iraq fighting against Iran.

Yet in 1990 Hussein ruined the excellent relations with the United States he had had for 22 years, since coming to power in 1968. During these 22 years, no one nationally visible or audible in the United States spoke or wrote about any villainies of Saddam Hussein or called him a dictator.

He was a beam of light in the benighted Islamic world of monsters like Ayatollah Khomeini of Iran, who, for example, seized the American Embassy and held its staff as hostages, something that neither Stalin nor Hitler nor Mao ever did. Aided and abetted by the United States, the hero Hussein fought for about 10 years against the villain Khomeini.

But in 1990 ... you guessed it - it was oil. Today many Americans visualize Kuwait as an exemplary democracy suddenly invaded by the arch-evil tyrant Hussein. Actually, Kuwait has been ruled by the Al-Sabah dynasty since 1759. While in Stalin's Russia there was universal suffrage, with secret ballot (and I was one of those few who dared to vote against Stalin), in Kuwait 7 out of 10 inhabitants have no right to vote at all.

During the Iraq-Iran war of the 1980s, Iran attacked Kuwaiti oil tankers because of Kuwait's support of Hussein in the war.

However, after the war it was noticed that Kuwait had been flooding world markets with cheap oil, thus forcing down Iraqi oil prices. The United States welcomed lower oil prices, but Hussein appealed to Arab leaders for mediation.

The Al-Sabah dynasty sensed Western support and would not listen. Loved as Hussein was, the oil dollars were dearer to them. Then Hussein invaded Kuwait, established universal suffrage, and the Al-Sabah dynasty fled to Saudi Arabia (not an exemplary democracy either).

The United States invaded Iraq and brought the dynasty back to rule happily ever after. Predictably, the dynasty wreaked reprisals on those inhabitants who had no right to vote and who supported Saddam Hussein. But of course, the U.S. mainstream media paid no attention.

On the other hand, the 'plot' to assassinate Bush Sr. during his visit to Kuwait in 1993 was zealously reported, though so far there has been no evidence of the 'plot' except that the ruling dynasty had 13 Kuwaitis imprisoned and shot. Well, in the 18th century, the justice meted out by the Al-Sabah dynasty was no better.

Since 1993 until a couple of years ago, Iraq was not in the U.S. mainstream news. There were other diversions owing to the fact that the Soviet empire collapsed and did not supply lavish military aid to whoever fought against the West.

If the Soviet empire had been in the 1990s as it was in the 1960s, it would have supplied to Yugoslavia in 1999 anti-aircraft facilities, complete with its personnel, fighter planes, complete with Soviet crews, etc. The NATO attack would have quickly become another Vietnam. The same applies to Iraq in 2003.

But there was no such danger after 1991. So why should not the British Prime Minister Tony Blair and 'the majority of the British people' relive those glorious times of the British Empire? All that is necessary is to pretend that the world threat is not China but that patch of desert called Iraq, and Saddam Hussein is the 'Hitler of today,' the definition previously applied to Milosevic in 1999.

That is, the pretense is that now it is, say, the 19th century, before the advent of Islamic suicidal terrorism, and the British Empire expected to colonize the Islamic world as well, and China was just another technologically backward territory where the British Empire brilliantly won its Opium Wars to impose its sale of opium on that virtually defenseless country.

I am happy to announce that the link to the Web site that is to serialize my book in weekly installments is www.levnavrozov.com. My personal e-mail address is navlev@cloud9.net. Thank you for your devotion and patience.

????????: Lev Navrozov
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#36 SmallMind

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Posted 20 April 2003 - 09:49 PM

Official statements notwithstanding, it appears that the
United States did indeed have an official position on the Iraq-Kuwait border dispute. After the invasion, one of the documents the Iraqis found in a Kuwaiti intelligence file was a memorandum concerning a November 1989 meeting between the head of Kuwaiti state security and CIA Director William Webster, which included the following:

We agreed with the American side that it was important to take advantage of the deteriorating economic situation in Iraq in order to put pressure on that country's government to delineate our common border. The Central Intelligence Agency gave us its view of appropriate means of pressure, saying that broad cooperation should be initiated between us on condition that such activities be coordinated at a high level.

The CIA called the document a "total fabrication". However,
as the Los Angeles Times pointed out, "The memo is not an obvious forgery, particularly since if Iraqi officials had written it
themselves, they almost certainly would have made it far more
damaging to U.S. and Kuwaiti credibility."{17} It was apparently
real enough and damaging enough to the Kuwaiti foreign minister
-- he fainted when confronted with the document by his Iraqi
counterpart at an Arab summit meeting in mid-August.{18}



Palestine Liberation Organization Chairman Yasser Arafat has
asserted that Washington thwarted the chance for a peaceful
resolution of the differences between Kuwait and Iraq at an Arab
summit in May, after Saddam had offered to negotiate a mutually
acceptable border with Kuwait. "The US was encouraging Kuwait
not to offer any compromise," said Arafat, "which meant there
could be no negotiated solution to avoid the Gulf crisis."
Kuwait, he said, was led to believe it could rely on the force of
US arms instead.{21}

Similarly, King Hussein of Jordan revealed that just before
the Iraqi invasion the Kuwaiti foreign minister stated: "We are
not going to respond to [Iraq] ... if they don't like it, let
them occupy our territory ... we are going to bring in the
Americans." And that the Kuwaiti emir told his military officers
that in the event of an invasion, their duty was to hold off the
Iraqis for 24 hours; by then "American and foreign forces would
land in Kuwait and expel them." King Hussein expressed the
opinion that Arab understanding was that Saddam had been goaded into invading, thereby stepping into a noose prepared for
him.{22}




http://members.aol.c...blum6/iraq2.htm
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#37 SmallMind

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Posted 04 May 2003 - 07:40 PM

Who lost Kuwait? When Saddam Hussein was obviously preparing to invade Kuwait, why did the U.S. semd signals that it would not interfere? By Murray Waas January 30, 1991

FIVE DAYS before the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, President Bush was briefed by William H. Webster, the director of the Central Intelligence Agency. Webster warned that Saddam Hussein was likely to invade Kuwait, predicting that Iraq would probably seize only the Rumaila oil fields and the islands of Bubiyan and Warba, not the whole country (although, he hedged, that was a possibility).

Despite this strong personal warning from Webster, high-level spokespersons for the Bush administration continued to state publicly that the U.S. would remain neutral in any Iraq-Kuwait conflict.

As the possibility of an invasion became clear to mid-level U.S. intelligence and diplomatic officials, they recommended that the administration send a strong message to Saddam that there would be U.S. retribution for any invasion.

But those warnings were ignored by Secretary of State James Baker and the president.

Since the invasion, highly classified U.S. intelligence assessments have determined that Saddam took U.S. statements of neutrality in the Iraq-Kuwait conflict as a green light for an invasion. One senior Iraqi military official, who has proved to be a valuable source of information for the CIA in the past, has told the agency that Saddam seemed to be sincerely surprised by the bellicose reaction of the Bush administration following the Aug. 2 invasion.

In an interview with this reporter, a senior administration insider bristled at the suggestion made by some intelligence analysts that the Bush administration would have acquiesced to an Iraqi annexation of the oil field and the two islands. "Our position then was what it is now: Such a seizure is a violation of international law and unacceptable to this administration.''

Taking the official at his word, the only possible explanation of the Bush administration's miscalculations in the days before the invasion is sheer incompetence on the part of the president and his men. It is impossible to say for sure whether Iraq would have invaded Kuwait if the administration's rhetoric had been remotely the same before Aug. 2 as it has been since. Now that we are at war, it can be said that the Bush administration's actions in those days almost certainly constitute the worst diplomatic failure by any modern president.

WHY DIDN'T President Bush and his administration send a strong message to Saddam prior to the invasion in an effort to prevent war?

Iraqi intentions were hardly a secret. As early as Feb. 24, 1990, during a meeting of the Arab Cooperation Council in Amman, Jordan, Saddam took Jordan's King Hussein and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak aside and threatened reprisals if Kuwait and Saudi Arabia did not forgive Iraq's $30 billion in war debt and provide Iraq with an additional $30 billion in new grants.

Saddam's warning was relayed almost immediately to U.S. intelligence officials, sources say.

As Saddam stepped up the shakedown of his neighbors, the Bush administration was winking at him. On April 12, 1990, the Iraqi leader met with a delegation of U.S. senators headed by Minority Leader Robert Dole. Saddam harangued his guests about a Voice of America (VOA) broadcast critical of his regime, as well as efforts in Congress to impose economic sanctions on Iraq over human rights abuses.

Dole, saying he was speaking on behalf of the president, reassured Saddam that neither of those actions properly reflected the policy of the Bush administration, according to a transcript of the meeting made public by the Iraqi government. (Dole and the other U.S. participants have not denied the accuracy of the transcript.) A low-level VOA bureaucrat was responsible for the broadcast, Dole explained. Dole also reassured Saddam that the Bush administration was opposed to economic sanctions.

When the Iraqi strongman continued to complain about an alleged ``large-scale campaign'' against Iraq by the United States and Europe, Dole shot back that its impetus "was not from President Bush.''

Dole met with President Bush when he returned to Washington in late April and counseled forbearance toward Saddam. It was a message George Bush was ready to hear.

When Iraq's war with Iran ended in August 1988, many in the Reagan administration argued unsuccessfully that the tilt toward Iraq should end. But Bush opposed this policy, high-level administration officials say. As president, Bush emphasized the long-term, positive role Iraq might someday play in the Middle East.

Within days of the April meeting with Dole, according to intelligence officials, Saddam ordered his top military commanders to secretly prepare a contingency plan for invading Kuwait. During this same period, Saddam once again demanded Kuwaiti and Saudi help in retiring his war debt, according to Saudi and Kuwaiti accounts provided almost contemporaneously to the Bush administration. The two neighboring countries committed considerably less than Saddam wanted -- Saddam was incensed.

SECRETARY BAKER, appearing before a Senate appropriations subcommittee on April 25, was unexpectedly confronted by Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) about the administration's ``forbearance'' on Iraq. "We [have] heard from President Hussein of Iraq too often, too bellicose,'' Lautenberg said. "On April 2, he threatened to scorch half of Israel with a chemical weapon.... The testimony of numerous arms experts proves that Iraq is developing or already has nuclear capabilities.''

In an extraordinary and previously unreported statement (since the routine hearing on the State Department's budget attracted little press attention), Baker appeared to give credence to Iraq's rationale for developing chemical weapons: "Let me say that ... the use of chemical weapons ... is very disturbing to us. Having said that, I must tell you what Saddam Hussein told members of the Senate [referring to the Dole mission] who visited with him last week.

"I am not vouching for these statements. I am simply reporting ... what was reported to us. And that is ... chemical weapons [would be used only] on the assumption that Iraq would have been attacked by nuclear weapons.''

Baker's testimony was extraordinary for a number of reasons.

Although the Reagan and Bush administrations had done little to discourage Iraq's use of chemical weapons, at least in public statements they had always condemned these weapons. Baker's statement made them seem to be a potentially legitimate part of deterrence.

U.S. intelligence sources have told this reporter that Baker's comments were cabled back to Baghdad from Iraq's Washington embassy and are believed to have been made known to Saddam Hussein personally.

The same intelligence sources say that the very next day an Iraqi embassy officer attended a House Foreign Affairs subcommittee on "U.S.-Iraqi Relations." And once again, the Bush administration was to send the wrong message to Saddam. Assistant Secretary of State John Kelly had some of the toughest words the Bush administration was to have for Iraq prior to the invasion of Kuwait, but at the same time Kelly made it clear that administration policy remained the same. The White House still opposed economic sanctions. Kelly even went on to praise Saddam for ``talking about a new constitution and an expansion of participatory democracy'' and claimed to believe that Saddam's threats against Israel were only rhetorical.

Continuing to think he had nothing to fear from the Bush administration, Saddam stepped up his pressure on Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. On May 28, during the Arab League Summit in Baghdad, Saddam accused his fellow Arabs of engaging in an "economic war against Iraq.'' He said that if things weren't settled soon, he might be willing to go to war.

Meanwhile, after a July 11 OPEC meeting, Saddam's anger at the Saudis and Kuwaitis hardened: Their refusal to raise oil prices and limit production would cause irreparable harm to the Iraqi economy.

On July l6, Iraqi Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz, attending the Arab summit in Tunisia, shocked his fellow diplomats by declaring: "We are sure some Arab states are involved in a conspiracy against us. And we want you to know, our country will not kneel.''

The very next day, Saddam threatened military action during a speech to a large crowd in Baghdad. "Countries which hurt Iraq should remember an old Iraqi saying: Cutting a neck is better than cutting a means of life.''

Few high up in the Bush administration took note. But on July l9, Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney told reporters during a press briefing that the United States was committed to militarily defending Kuwait if it was attacked. (Cheney was only reiterating a long-standing policy: The Reagan administration had assured Kuwait during the Iran-Iraq war that it would militarily defend it against attack, although the promise was made, ironically, because Kuwait, then allied with Iraq, feared an attack from Iran.)

Shortly after Cheney's comments were reported in the press, they were quickly repudiated by his spokesperson, Pete Williams, who explained that the secretary had spoken with "some degree of liberty.''

According to one senior Defense Department source: "The White House cut the secretary down to size rather quickly. They said, 'You're committing us to a war we might not want to fight.' He was told quite pointedly that, from then on, statements on Iraq would be made by the White House and State Department.''

From that date on, the Bush administration did speak with one voice -- a consistent one that assured Saddam the United States would look the other way if Iraq were to attack Kuwait.
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#38 SmallMind

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Posted 04 May 2003 - 07:42 PM

On July l6, Iraqi Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz, attending the Arab summit in Tunisia, shocked his fellow diplomats by declaring: "We are sure some Arab states are involved in a conspiracy against us. And we want you to know, our country will not kneel.''

The very next day, Saddam threatened military action during a speech to a large crowd in Baghdad. "Countries which hurt Iraq should remember an old Iraqi saying: Cutting a neck is better than cutting a means of life.''

Few high up in the Bush administration took note. But on July l9, Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney told reporters during a press briefing that the United States was committed to militarily defending Kuwait if it was attacked. (Cheney was only reiterating a long-standing policy: The Reagan administration had assured Kuwait during the Iran-Iraq war that it would militarily defend it against attack, although the promise was made, ironically, because Kuwait, then allied with Iraq, feared an attack from Iran.)

Shortly after Cheney's comments were reported in the press, they were quickly repudiated by his spokesperson, Pete Williams, who explained that the secretary had spoken with "some degree of liberty.''

According to one senior Defense Department source: "The White House cut the secretary down to size rather quickly. They said, 'You're committing us to a war we might not want to fight.' He was told quite pointedly that, from then on, statements on Iraq would be made by the White House and State Department.''

From that date on, the Bush administration did speak with one voice -- a consistent one that assured Saddam the United States would look the other way if Iraq were to attack Kuwait.

During a press briefing on July 24, State Department spokesperson Margaret Tutwiler said: "We do not have any defense treaties with Kuwait, and there are no special defense or security commitments to Kuwait.'' The very next day, July 25, Saddam was personally told the same by the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, April Glaspie.

EARLY ON THE MORNING of July 28, CIA Director William Webster and a small contingent of aides arrived at the White House to inform President Bush that they believed that an Iraqi invasion of Kuwait was imminent. Webster told the president that the Iraqis were likely to annex only the Rumaila oil fields and the two islands. The CIA officials were armed with satellite photos showing Iraqi troops massed near the Kuwait border and brought along two CIA experts on satellite imaging, in case Bush had detailed questions, but the president showed little interest.

(A White House spokesperson refused to confirm or deny that such a briefing was held. A spokesperson for the CIA, Mark Mansfield, told this reporter he could only say that the CIA furnished the White House with "very useful and timely information.'')

Despite Webster's personal warning, spokespersons for the Bush administration continued to insist the U.S. would remain neutral.

By July 31, two days before the invasion, analysts at both the CIA and the Defense Intelligence Agency reportedly had reached a consensus that some type of Iraqi military action against Kuwait was imminent, although there were disagreements as to whether Saddam was simply targeting the Rumaila oil fields and the two islands or the entire country.

But that day Assistant Secretary of State John Kelly, in a prepared statement to a House foreign affairs subcommittee, said, "Historically, the U.S. has taken no position on the border disputes in the area, not on matters pertaining to internal OPEC deliberations.''

The subcommittee chairman, Lee Hamilton (D-Ind.), pressed Kelly, saying: "I read a statement ... in the press [in which] Secretary Cheney said the United States' commitment was to come to ... Kuwait's defense if attacked. Perhaps you could clarify for me just what our commitment is.''

Asserting that he had never even heard of Cheney's statement, Kelly said: "We have no defense treaty relationship with any gulf country. That is clear.... We have not historically taken a position on border disputes.''

Hamilton pressed Kelly further: "If Iraq ... charged across the border into Kuwait -- what would be our position with regard to the use of U.S. forces?.... It is correct to say, however, that we do not have a treaty commitment which would obligate us to engage U.S. forces there?''

"That is correct.'' Kelly responded.

Two days later, Iraqi troops crossed the border into Kuwait.

SADDAM'S UNDERSTANDING that the Bush administration had given him a green light to invade could not have been any more emphatically reinforced than it was one week before the invasion, at his July 25 meeting with Ambassador Glaspie. The Iraqi government gave a transcript of that meeting to ABC News in September. The Bush administration has not disputed the accuracy of the transcript.

Saddam left little doubt during the two-hour meeting that he was considering an invasion of Kuwait. He bluntly told Glaspie that he considered Kuwait to be engaging in acts of war against Iraq by not assisting with Iraq's war debt or agreeing to limit its production of oil. If Iraq attacked, Saddam explained, it would be because Kuwait was already at war with Iraq.

"When planned and deliberate policy forces the price of oil down without good commercial means, then that means another war against Iraq,'' Saddam told Glaspie. "Military war kills people, but economic war kills their humanity by depriving them of their chance to have a good standard of living. As you know, we gave rivers of blood in a war that lasted eight years.... Iraqis have a right to live proudly. We do not accept that anyone could injure Iraqi pride or the Iraqi right to have a high standard of living [citing Kuwait specifically]. We are not aggressors, but we do not accept aggression either.''

Saddam even went so far as to warn Glaspie he would not fear U.S. retaliation, "You can come to Iraq with aircraft and missiles,'' he told her, "but do not push us to the point we cease to care.''

Then he exploded, ominously: "And when we feel that you want to injure our pride and take away the Iraqis' chance of a high standard of living, then we will cease to care and death will be the choice for us.''

Incredible as it now seems, the American ambassador had no forceful words to discourage Saddam from invading Kuwait. Instead, the transcript shows, Glaspie expressed sympathy for his attitude toward Kuwait, comparing his plight to that of America's founding fathers. "I think you know well that we as a people have our own experience with colonialists.''

Glaspie went on to tell Saddam that the Bush administration wanted only closer relations with Iraq, pointing out that the president himself "had [directed his] administration to reject the suggestion of implementing trade sanctions.''

But Saddam wasn't in a conciliatory mood. Bush had clamped down recently (too late and still in only a quite limited fashion) on sales of U.S. goods that could be used for military purposes.

"There is nothing left for us to buy from America,'' Saddam complained. "Only wheat. Because every time we want to buy something, they say it is forbidden."

Glaspie was apologetic: "I have a direct instruction from the president to seek better relations with Iraq.''

Then, extraordinarily, without having been solicited to do so, she signaled to Saddam that the U.S. would do nothing if Iraq invaded Kuwait. "We have no opinion on the Arab-Arab conflicts, like your border disagreements with Kuwait," she said.

AFTER THE invasion of Kuwait and after the Iraqis made public a transcript of the Hussein-Glaspie meeting, the White House attempted to make the ambassador into a scapegoat of sorts. Back in Washington, Glaspie was confined to a desk job and told she would not return to Iraq. The White House began to leak stories that in part blamed miscalculations by Glaspie for the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait.

Glaspie's defenders in the State Department countered with their own campaign of leaks, making it known that Glaspie's statements to Saddam only followed the strict instructions of a cable signed by James Baker. Baker admitted on a Sunday morning talk show that there was such a cable, but said he shouldn't be held responsible, since it was only one among "probably 312,000 cables or so that go out under my name.''

Glaspie wasn't the only one to be sandbagged with responsibility for the invasion fiasco. The White House also orchestrated a series of leaks, according to a U.S. intelligence official, blaming the CIA for losing Kuwait. A "senior White House official'' falsely told The New York Times that "CIA assessments of Iraqi military aims were 'flawed' and that the agency concluded that Iraq's saber-rattling was bluster, not genuine.''

This blame-juggling suggests an awareness even in the administration that a costly and bloody war quite possibly could have been averted except for the most idiotic diplomatic blundering.

A longer version of this piece first appeared in the Village Voice, January 22, 1991.
http://www.sfbg.com/...war/013091.html
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#39 SmallMind

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Posted 04 May 2003 - 07:45 PM

Swans ' Dossiers The 1991 Gulf War Rationale by Gilles d'Aymery

[Note: this is a document in progress, a first draft was published on August 26, 2002 (Last revision: February 1, 2003). We would like to invite your comments as well as any potential addition you think could be included in this dossier. Particularly, we could use help on the fourth issue, Nuclear weapons.]


"Governments lie"
-- Isador Feinstein Stone (1907-1989)


When on August 2, 1990, the Iraqi army invaded Kuwait, the response of the Bush Sr. Administration was decisive. It would not stand, said the president. A line in the sand had to be drawn. For months the administration worked in the U.N. and with its allies to assemble a formidable force that would eventually defeat the Iraqi army and liberate Kuwait between January 17 and February 28, 1991.

In order to justify the war, the administration constructed a rationale that was based on the following:

1) Iraq had violated international laws by invading a sovereign country.
2) Iraq had amassed troops and tanks and was bent to invade Saudi Arabia.
3) As Congress was deliberating on a vote to grant the president authorization to use force (January 12, 1991), a story surfaced that Iraqi soldiers had removed babies from incubators that they were stealing and had left these babies to die on the floor of the hospital. This story made the headlines around the world and was a big factor in the positive result of the congressional vote.
4) Saddam Hussein was a dangerous, blood-thirsty dictator. He had accumulated Weapons of Mass Destruction, both chemical and nuclear (or was close to developing a nuclear device). He was a vicious, Hitler-like killer who had gassed his own people, and was ready to commit untold atrocities (the precursor of the Human Rights' discourse against any designated villain).

Let's review these four points and offer references and resources.

I - A Line in the Sand: Invasion of a sovereign country.

This is a historical fact. Iraq did invade Kuwait militarily without having been attacked by the Emirate, at least not militarily. However, to this date, one can argue that the oil policy pursued by Kuwait which by deliberately producing oil far beyond its OPEC quota, thus bringing down the price of oil per barrel into the low $ teens, was highly detrimental to the economic recovery of Iraq, a country that after eight years of war with Iran, its Persian neighbor, was deeply indebted and in dire needs of reconstruction. The Iraqi government attempted to reverse the Kuwaiti oil policy with the help of Egypt and Saudi Arabia to no avail. From an Iraqi perspective, each one dollar drop in the price of oil cost the Iraqi nation $one billion a year. In other words, the case could be made that Kuwait was waging an economic war on Iraq.

More importantly, in the months leading to the Iraqi invasion, the U.S. diplomacy was quite ambiguous. While the Iraqi regime sent a series of feelers the U.S. administration went at great length to reassure Iraq that it did not take a position on inter-Arab disputes. With the lonely exception of Dick Cheney, then Secretary of Defense, who asserted that the U.S. would defend Kuwait if it were attacked but who was immediately reigned in by the White House, the administration pursued a hands-off approach on this issue. An article by Murray Waas appeared in the Village Voice of January 22, 1991; a shorter version of it, "Who lost Kuwait," was also published on January 30, 1991 in The San Francisco Bay Guardian. This piece answers with details "Why did the U.S. sends signals that it would not interfere when Saddam Hussein was obviously preparing to invade Kuwait?" This piece is available on line at http://www.sfbg.com/...ar/013091.html. In fact, Administration officials told The Washington Post six days before the invasion that "an Iraqi attack on Kuwait would not draw a U.S. military response." (7/26/90)

Furthermore, the strange behavior of U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, April Glaspie, has long been dissected by many commentators. She's reported having told Saddam Hussein, "We have no opinion on the Arab-Arab conflicts, like your border disagreement with Kuwait." There is ample documentation on the Web regarding Mrs. Glaspie's possibly ill-chosen comments. Murray Waas, in the article cited above, reviewed the meeting between Saddam Hussein and Mrs. Glaspie on July 25, 1990. The transcript of that meeting can be read at http://www.chss.mont...r/glaspie.html, the Web site of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at Montclair State University, New Jersey. However it should be noted that the source of this transcript has not been verified and can be questioned. See the explanation provided on January 16, 2002 by Abi Cox, a participant on the forum of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq (CASI) Web site, at http://www.casi.org..../msg00099.html. Later on, after the war, April Glaspie was quoted as saying in response to a journalist's question that the U.S. had invited Iraq to take Kuwait, "Obviously, I didn't think, and nobody else did, that the Iraqis were going to take all of Kuwait," which would suggest that the U.S. may have been prepared to let Iraq take over the Rumailah oil fields. John R. MacArthur, the publisher of Harper's Magazine, characterized April Glaspie's action a "famous gaffe," in a speech at the Independent Institute on October 7, 1992. The speech can be read at http://www.independe...f_macarth.html. Brian Becker, who was a member of the Muhammad Ali Peace Delegation that traveled to Iraq in late November 1990 in an effort to prevent the war presented his report at the New York Commission of Inquiry for the International War Crimes Tribunal hearing on May 11, 1991. It explains the actual reasons of what seems to have been a huge deception on the part of the U.S. government. The report can be read at http://deoxy.org/wc/wc-consp.htm#one. (Note: Whatever the actual actions of April Glaspie were -- she has remained tight-lipped about them ever since -- she was not rewarded much for them. She is presently the U.S. Consul General for Cape Town, South Africa, a demotion compared to her previous ambassadorship.)

II - Possible Iraqi invasion of Saudi Arabia

The U.S. administration made the claim that the Iraqis had amassed troops and tanks along the Saudi border and were poised to invade the kingdom. This claim was widely relayed by the main media. The only problem with these allegations was that they were utterly false. The former Soviet Union had provided satellite pictures, taken on September 11 and 13, 1990, of the border (actually, they were selling the pictures for $1,500 each) that clearly indicated that no concentration of Iraqi troops and equipment was in sight. Major news organizations like ABC News (Sam Donaldson) or The Washington Post (Bob Woodward) sat on the pictures and never used them. The only U.S. news organization that indeed published them was a regional paper, The St. Petersburg Times (Florida). Those pictures clearly showed, however, the concentration of U.S. troops on the Saudi side of the border! John R. MacArthur (and Ben Haig Bagdikian) documented this falsity in their book, "Second Front: Censorship and Propaganda in the Gulf War," University of California Press; reprint edition 1993; ISBN: 0520083989. MacArthur also cited these facts in his above-mentioned speech, http://www.independe...f_macarth.html. Brian Becker debunked this claim in detail in his report. Jean Heller, the Editor of The St. Petersburg Times hired a U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency in the Reagan Administration, and a former image specialist for the Defense Intelligence Agency, Peter Zimmerman, to analyze the satellite photographs, to no avail. There simply were no Iraqi troops poised to invade Saudi Arabia.
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#40 SmallMind

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Posted 04 May 2003 - 07:46 PM

III - The infamous "incubators" story

One of the most sophisticated fabrications in recent memory and widely reviewed on the Web. We wrote about it on February 19, 2001 in "Kosovo - The 'Banality of Evil'" as follows: "The readers may recall the testimony before Congress on October 10, 1990 of a 15-year old Kuwaiti woman, Nayirah (her last name was kept confidential). She had witnessed a terrifying deed by the Iraqi invaders of Kuwait. In her own words: 'I volunteered at the al-Addan hospital. While I was there, I saw the Iraqi soldiers come into the hospital with guns, and go into the room where . . . babies were in incubators. They took the babies out of the incubators, took the incubators, and left the babies on the cold floor to die.' The story about the 312 babies made the news with a vengeance. President Bush (that would be George I) repeated it. The line in the sand was drawn. Like Racak, it turned public opinion and Congress on the path of war. Months later we learned that Nayirah was the daughter of a Kuwaiti prince, Saud Nasir al-Sabah, Kuwait's Ambassador to the U.S. She had left Kuwait before the Iraqi invasion. The story had been entirely fabricated by the PR firm Hill & Knowlton. Tom Lantos, the California Democrat who chaired the hearing was co-chair (with Republican Rep. John Porter) of the Congressional Human Rights Foundation that occupied free office space in Hill & Knowlton's Washington, DC office." One of the best documentation of this hoax can be found in a fascinating book, "Toxic Sludge Is Good for You, Lies, Damn Lies and the Public Relations Industry" by John C. Stauber, Sheldon Rampton, 1995; (Common Courage Press; ISBN: 1-56751-060-4). Stauber and Rampton are Executive Director and Editor, respectively, of PR Watch, a newsletter published by the Center for Media and Democracy. An excerpt of the book on this PR issue was published in June 1996 by Claire W. Gilbert in her fine publication Blazing Tattles and can be read on line at http://www.blazingta...nfo/mother1.htm and http://www.blazingta...fo/mother2.htm. It's an extraordinary read. PR Watch also recently posted these excerpts on their Web site, at http://www.prwatch.o.../tsigfy10.html. Last May 2002, the former Hill & Knowlton staffer who was handling Nayirah made the claim that the story was true in O'Dwyer's PR Daily, an online access to the inside news of Public Relations but was forcefully rebuked by PR Watch Editor, Sheldon Rampton. (See http://www.odwyerpr..../0528pegado.htm -- note that the link was valid as of August 2002 but the page is no longer available.)

http://www.swans.com...art8/ga138.html
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