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Author Topic: Ahhh, so we can Nuke Baghdad and blame it on the evil one...
Moredreads
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posted 18 February 2003 02:43 PM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
His list includes a "concern about Saddam Hussein using weapons of mass destruction against his own people and blaming it on us, which would fit a pattern," Mr. Rumsfeld said. He said the document also noted "that he could do what he did to the Kuwaiti oil fields and explode them, detonate, in a way that lost that important revenue for the Iraqi people."
From: Canada | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
mandrake
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posted 18 February 2003 03:44 PM      Profile for mandrake     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Exactly so. Saddam's penchant for slaughtering his own people and for committing acts of environmental terrorism are well known.
From: erehwon | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
Willowdale Wizard
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posted 18 February 2003 03:48 PM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
yes, well, i'm sure that rumsfeld's first concern is the revenue for Iraqi people ... is that the same concern for oil revenue to the columbian people and occidental petroleum, or nigerian people and shell?

an interesting part of the article is where the head of the CIA admits that it could get hairy and scary if there is a war ... they could very easily loose track of where the weapons actually are (bunker busting bombs and destruction of paperwork), or people could just seize them and play warlord with various parts of iraq:

quote:
The director of central intelligence, George J. Tenet, hinted at one of the deepest worries heard in the hallways of the intelligence agency, the Pentagon and the White House: that a successful removal of Saddam Hussein could be followed by a scramble among Iraqis for what remains of his military arsenal — particularly his chemical and biological weapons — before it was secured by American forces.

"The country cannot be carved up," Mr. Tenet said of Iraq. "The country gets carved up and people believe they have license to take parts of the country for themselves. That will make this a heck of a lot harder."



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Moredreads
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posted 18 February 2003 07:35 PM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Exactly so. Saddam's penchant for slaughtering his own people and for committing acts of environmental terrorism are well known.

Only when at war.


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mandrake
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posted 18 February 2003 10:17 PM      Profile for mandrake     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Only when at war.

Which seems to be almost constant. He gassed 60 Kurd villages in the 1980s, and slaughtered 5000 in a single gas attack before the Gulf War.He slaughtered thousands of Sunni Muslims in southern Iraq after the Gulf War.
This vile creature must be removed soon, before he can continue his atrocities, and his apologists need to smarten up and smell the poison gas.


From: erehwon | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
darkhorse
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posted 18 February 2003 11:49 PM      Profile for darkhorse     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Exactly so. Saddam's penchant for slaughtering his own people and for committing acts of environmental terrorism are well known.
You can say the same about Bush. As governor/executioner of Texas he killed 131 americans. And we all know how great his enviromental policies are. Then there's the millions he's sentenced to death by denying them access to cheap medication.

[ 18 February 2003: Message edited by: darkhorse ]


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WingNut
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posted 18 February 2003 11:51 PM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
And what of those who supported him when he did all these terrible things? What about those who urged the rebellion and then left thme to be slaughtered? What about the Butcher Sharon and his constant murder of Palestinians and his weapons of mass destruction? When do we rid ourselves of that vile creature. And speaking of vile, how are you?
From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
mandrake
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posted 18 February 2003 11:56 PM      Profile for mandrake     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
You can say the same about Bush. As governor/executioner of Texas he killed 131 americans. And we all know how great his enviromental policies are. Then there's the millions he's sentenced to death by denying them access to cheap medication.

darkhorsesass:

Yeah, that's an accurate comparison. And Michelle wonders why I call you guys delusional.

wingnut:

That's Mister Vile, to you!


From: erehwon | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 19 February 2003 12:10 AM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
What about those who urged the rebellion and then left thme to be slaughtered?

Kind of interesting how the Republican Guard units who survived the retreat from Kuwait, and who were allowed to retreat after Bush Sr called the cease fire in 91, are the same ones who put down the rebellion. So first you're complaining that the US slaughtered retreating Iraqi soliders, and now you're complaining that the US didn't slaughter enough Iraqi soldiers.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
WingNut
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posted 19 February 2003 12:40 AM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
No sheep, that would be your complaint.

Being so far up the ass of Dick Cheney you can't see the light. Maybe they should never have encouraged rebellion in the first place. But of course those rebellious Iraqis should have known better after the US sold out the Kurds to be gassed by Iraq with chemicals provided in part by US corporations.

And don't worry, first opportunity, Uncle Sam will fuck 'em again. Hell, to liberate 'em we's gonna kill 'em. Heehaw!

Yeah, sheep, your grasp of the situation is quite overwhelming.


From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
Doug M.
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posted 19 February 2003 01:17 AM      Profile for Doug M.        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
You can say the same about Bush.

Alright, now I'm getting really confused...Is Bush Saddam, or is he Hitler?

Or both? Are all three equally bad? Personally, I am offended by the notion that Bush is now only Saddam; I think the facts "astonishingly" show that he deserves the full Hitler

quote:
Yeah, sheep, your grasp of the situation is quite overwhelming.


I'm glad to hear you're overwhelmed Wingnut! That makes two of us!


From: Canada | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
Moredreads
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posted 19 February 2003 03:27 AM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Which seems to be almost constant. He gassed 60 Kurd villages in the 1980s, and slaughtered 5000 in a single gas attack before the Gulf War.He slaughtered thousands of Sunni Muslims in southern Iraq after the Gulf War.
This vile creature must be removed soon, before he can continue his atrocities, and his apologists need to smarten up and smell the poison gas.

As horrible as the use of gas is, it must be recognized that Saddam used gas against the Kurds during the war with Iran, when almost all Kurdish militant groups were officially allied with Iran. Also, it must be noted that both side used gas. This is not an excuse, just a clarification that the gas was used in wartime, against people (Kurdish villagers) that were allied with the enemy.

Secondly, the uprising in Basra was a direct result of the Gulf War.


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Moredreads
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posted 19 February 2003 03:35 AM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Kind of interesting how the Republican Guard units who survived the retreat from Kuwait, and who were allowed to retreat after Bush Sr called the cease fire in 91, are the same ones who put down the rebellion. So first you're complaining that the US slaughtered retreating Iraqi soliders, and now you're complaining that the US didn't slaughter enough Iraqi soldiers.

Sorry Sheep this is all factually incorrect. The Republican Guard left Kuwait long before the bombing began, so that they could guard the approaches to Baghdad. This was done expressly to preserve the intergrity of the units by keeping them out of the center of the conflict. The Guard actually only engaged US forces once, in southern Iraq, and retreated quite quickly.

In fact many of the rebelious in Basra were actually retreating Iraqi soldiers*. The rest of the units were in no shape to repress anything and it was the RG that was called in to do the job. Of course the official Iraqi history does not mention this.

*Those foolish enough to believe the propoganda leaflets dropped on them by the US. Liberation was at hand. The song, 'Won't get fooled again' comes to mind.

[ 19 February 2003: Message edited by: Moredreads ]


From: Canada | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 19 February 2003 10:01 AM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
You're only half right Moredreads. The Guard had left Kuwait and taken up in southeastern Iraq. They didn't retreat quickly, at least not all of them. They were the troops that dug in and fought.

quote:
On 27 February to the west of Al-Basrah city, elements of the RGFC Hammurabi Armored Division with scattered elements of RGFC infantry divisions continued to defend under heavy pressure from advancing Coalition forces. Some parts of these units succeeded in escaping across the Euphrates River. The Hammurabi was spared destruction when President Bush ordered an end to the ground war after only 100 hours. DIA estimated that upwards of 70,000 to 80,000 troops from defeated divisions in Kuwait may have fled into the city of Al-Basrah.

source

And just to help clear things up in my head, being so far up Cheney's ass and all. The US should not have attacked the Iraqi army retreating from Kuwait. And they shouldn't have let that same army put down the rebellions. But they also shouldn't have encouraged rebellions either. Go Saddam!


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Whazzup?
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posted 19 February 2003 11:04 AM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
As horrible as the use of gas is, it must be recognized that Saddam used gas against the Kurds during the war with Iran, when almost all Kurdish militant groups were officially allied with Iran. Also, it must be noted that both side used gas. This is not an excuse, just a clarification that the gas was used in wartime, against people (Kurdish villagers) that were allied with the enemy.

How many times will you get the same thing wrong, Moredreads? Saddam used gas specifically targeting Kurdish civilians, far from the war's front lines, and more specifically, long after the war with Iran was over. You have this information, I've provided ample sources. Why do you keep lying about it?


From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 19 February 2003 11:07 AM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
the US sold out the Kurds to be gassed by Iraq with chemicals provided in part by US corporations

It's been well established that it was actually Germany who provided Iraq with the bulk of their chemical weapons.


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Moredreads
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posted 19 February 2003 11:20 AM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
How many times will you get the same thing wrong, Moredreads? Saddam used gas specifically targeting Kurdish civilians, far from the war's front lines, and more specifically, long after the war with Iran was over. You have this information, I've provided ample sources. Why do you keep lying about it?

Look I tried to discuss this with you once in a semi-civilized way. You were not able to see past you Saddamaphobia and repeatedly insulted me, as you are now. Lying? Mistaken, perhaps, but to insist that I am lying is a completely shitty debating tactic and exactly the kind of insults that you stooped to before.

You are an asshole, so, there is not point in discussing this with you. Sorry.

To answer your point for the benefit of others, even if Iraq did in fact gas Kurds after hostilities ceased with Iran, the war with the Kurds continued and the practices that evolved did evolve as part of the war with Iran. My point was a general conceptual one, rather than a specific one.

[ 19 February 2003: Message edited by: Moredreads ]


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WingNut
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posted 19 February 2003 11:30 AM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
It's been well established that it was actually Germany who provided Iraq with the bulk of their chemical weapons.
The 8,000 pages the U.S. edited from the Iraqi report to the UN, sheep, those 8,000 pages Cheney didn't think the world should know about, listed 26 US corporations which provided Iraq with materials for weapons including chemical weapons. Some of those sales were illegal and went unpunished. Illegal on paper only, I guess.

From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 19 February 2003 11:35 AM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
But Wingy, the 8,000 pages were only edited from the version given to the non-permanent members of the UN security council. France, Russia, China and the UK all got the full unedited version.
From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
WingNut
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posted 19 February 2003 11:42 AM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Oh, so you got your copy?
From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 19 February 2003 11:46 AM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Nope. France and Russia haven't coughed one up. Wonder why? Do you suppose they might have a vested interest in people like yourself continuing to believe it was the US that armed Iraq? Wouldn't look good for their pro-peace image if the anti-US crowd were to realize that they were the No. 1 and 2 arms suppliers to Saddam Hussein.
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Briguy
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posted 19 February 2003 11:49 AM      Profile for Briguy     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
There's a kernel of truth to that statement, sheep. The big 5 (arms supplying countries) got a complete copy of the document, probably because they all have something to be less than proud of. Now they're all passing out cigars bragging about who undercut who for each contract listed in the Iraq dossier. Good company to keep.
From: No one is arguing that we should run the space program based on Physics 101. | Registered: Nov 2001  |  IP: Logged
clockwork
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posted 19 February 2003 11:51 AM      Profile for clockwork     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Babble is a pretty powerful repository of news if you know how to use it right (but google is still better):

U.S. Had Key Role in Iraq Buildup

The Germans may have provided the bulk of the pre-cursors but it doesn't mean the US did nothing.


From: Pokaroo! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
WingNut
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posted 19 February 2003 11:52 AM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Saddam used gas specifically targeting Kurdish civilians, far from the war's front lines, and more specifically, long after the war with Iran was over.

Here is an article amply sourced and linked:
http://www.democraticunderground.com/articles/03/02/08_gassing.html

quote:
While past error is no indication of future action, the Kurds have not forgotten that Secretary of State Colin Powell was then the national security adviser who orchestrated Ronald Reagan's decision to give Hussein a pass for gassing the Kurds. Dick Cheney, then a prominent Republican congressman and now vice president and the Bush administration's leading Iraq hawk, could have helped push the sanctions legislation but did not. [Peter W. Galbraith, "The Wild Card in a Post-Saddam Iraq," The Boston Globe Magazine, December 15, 2002]

quote:

In the fall of 1989, at a time when Iraq's invasion of Kuwait was only nine months away and Saddam Hussein was desperate for money to buy arms, President Bush signed a top-secret National Security Decision directive ordering closer ties with Baghdad and opening the way for $1 billion in new aid, according to classified documents and interviews....

Getting new aid from Washington was critical for Iraq in the waning months of 1989 and the early months of 1990 because international bankers had cut off virtually all loans to Baghdad. They were alarmed that it was falling behind in repaying its debts but continuing to pour millions of dollars into arms purchases, even though the Iran-Iraq War had ended in the summer of 1988.

In addition to clearing the way for new financial aid, senior Bush aides as late as the spring of 1990 overrode concern among other government officials and insisted that Hussein continue to be allowed to buy so-called "dual use" technology -- advanced equipment that could be used for both civilian and military purposes. The Iraqis were given continued access to such equipment, despite emerging evidence that they were working on nuclear arms and other weapons of mass destruction. ...

And the pressure in 1989 and 1990 to give Hussein crucial financial assistance and maintain his access to sophisticated U.S. technology were not isolated incidents.

Rather, classified documents obtained by The Times show, they reflected a long-secret pattern of personal efforts by Bush -- both as President and as vice president -- to support and placate the Iraqi dictator. Repeatedly, when serious objections to helping Hussein arose within the government, Bush and aides following his directives intervened to suppress the resistance. [Frantz and Waas, "Bush Secret Effort Helped Iraq Build its War Machine," Los Angeles Times, February 23, 1992]


quote:
The pro-Iraq strategy was embraced by Bush when he became President. His Administration continued to encourage the transfer of U.S.-supplied arms to Iraq from Arab allies, according to interviews and classified documents. [Frantz and Waas, ibid.]
quote:
but circumstantial evidence indicates that the [Bush] Administration purposely decided to allow Hussein to slaughter his opponents in the south.

I find it particularly interesting that the gassing of 3,000 Kurds, acceptable at the time to the likes of Powell, Cheney, Rumsfeld and Daddy Bush is now a terrible crime, but the incitememt to suicide of thousands more and the impending deaths of still many thousands more is perfectly justifiable.

Must be bizarro world.


From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
clockwork
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posted 19 February 2003 11:58 AM      Profile for clockwork     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Plus there is this [URL=CIA guy that is going around and telling everyone who listens that the issue of Saddam gassing the Kurds isn't nearly as clear cut.

quote:
This much about the gassing at Halabja we undoubtedly know: it came about in the course of a battle between Iraqis and Iranians. Iraq used chemical weapons to try to kill Iranians who had seized the town, which is in northern Iraq not far from the Iranian border. The Kurdish civilians who died had the misfortune to be caught up in that exchange. But they were not Iraq's main target.

And the story gets murkier: immediately after the battle the United States Defense Intelligence Agency investigated and produced a classified report, which it circulated within the intelligence community on a need-to-know basis. That study asserted that it was Iranian gas that killed the Kurds, not Iraqi gas.



From: Pokaroo! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Whazzup?
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posted 19 February 2003 12:22 PM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
In case you're interested, clockwork, the issue you raise was discussed fully on this thread. The story has no credibility at all, and was debunked by Human Rights Watch, Peter Galbraith and the Kurds themselves. I won't bother collecting together all the sources yet again.

WingNut, I took issue with Moredreads' repeated misrepresentation of the facts -- something he continues to do in his "revised" response, where he still manages to avoid addressing the fact that Kurdish civilians were specifically targeted.

I fail to see how the reprehensible behaviour of the US in collaborating with Saddam in the late 1980s should change my opinion of genocide denial.


From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
mandrake
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posted 19 February 2003 12:33 PM      Profile for mandrake     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Look I tried to discuss this with you once in a semi-civilized way. You were not able to see past you Saddamaphobia and repeatedly insulted me, as you are now. Lying?

Don't confuse Moredreads with facts. It might interfere with his Saddamophilia.

quote:
You are an asshole, so, there is not point in discussing this with you. Sorry.

Typical of Moredreads debating style.

[ 19 February 2003: Message edited by: mandrake ]


From: erehwon | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
Sisyphus
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posted 19 February 2003 12:36 PM      Profile for Sisyphus     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
This business about the US not supplying as many weapons to Iraq in the '80s as France, Britain or Russia is a red herring used by the anti-Iraqi-people types (AIP) to try to mitigate the horror inflicted on the country during the first Iraqi civilian massacre so as to make the upcoming one OK. First, the Americans didn't give a shit about the disingenuously-phrased "he gassed his own people" claim:

quote:
In late 1987, the Iraqi air force began using chemical agents against Kurdish resistance forces in northern Iraq that had formed a loose alliance with Iran, according to State Department reports. The attacks, which were part of a "scorched earth" strategy to eliminate rebel-controlled villages, provoked outrage on Capitol Hill and renewed demands for sanctions against Iraq. The State Department and White House were also outraged -- but not to the point of doing anything that might seriously damage relations with Baghdad.

"The U.S.-Iraqi relationship is . . . important to our long-term political and economic objectives," Assistant Secretary of State Richard W. Murphy wrote in a September 1988 memorandum that addressed the chemical weapons question. "We believe that economic sanctions will be useless or counterproductive to influence the Iraqis."


-From the Washington Post

quote:
According to a New York Times article in August, 2002, Col. Walter P. Lang, a senior defense intelligence officer at the time, explained that D.I.A. and C.I.A. officials "were desperate to make sure that Iraq did not lose" to Iran. "The use of gas on the battlefield by the Iraqis was not a matter of deep strategic concern," he said. One veteran said, that the Pentagon "wasn't so horrified by Iraq's use of gas." "It was just another way of killing people _ whether with a bullet or phosgene, it didn't make any difference."


So you AIP types can stop crying the US crocodile tears for this.

Second, you are right that:

quote:
Although U.S. arms manufacturers were not as deeply involved as German or British companies in selling weaponry to Iraq, the Reagan administration effectively turned a blind eye to the export of "dual use" items such as chemical precursors and steel tubes that can have military and civilian applications. According to several former officials, the State and Commerce departments promoted trade in such items as a way to boost U.S. exports and acquire political leverage over Hussein.


Wash. Post

However, where did Saddam get the money and how did a known terrorist state get the authorization to purchase, not only "dual-use" items, but also chemical and biological weapons?

quote:
As part of its opening to Baghdad, the Reagan administration removed Iraq from the State Department terrorism list in February 1982, despite heated objections from Congress.

Howard Teicher, a former National Security Council official, who worked on Iraqi policy during the Reagan administration
testified in 1995 in a sworn affadavit:

quote:
the United States "actively supported the Iraqi war effort by supplying the Iraqis with billions of dollars of credits, by providing military intelligence and advice to the Iraqis, and by closely monitoring third country arms sales to Iraq to make sure Iraq had the military weaponry required." Teicher said in the affidavit that former CIA director William Casey used a Chilean company, Cardoen, to supply Iraq with cluster bombs that could be used to disrupt the Iranian human wave attacks.

quote:
A PBS Frontline episode, "The Arming of Iraq" (1990) detailed much of the conventional and so-called "dual-use" weapons sold to Iraq. The public learned from other sources that at least since mid-1980s the US was selling chemical and biological material for weapons to Iraq and orchestrating private sales. These sales began soon after current Secretary of State, Donald Rumsfeld traveled to Baghdad in 1985 and met with Saddam Hussein as a private businessman on behalf of the Reagan administration

quote:
By late 1992, the sales of chemical and biological weapons were revealed. Congressional Records of Senator Riegle's investigation of the Gulf War Syndrome show that that the US government approved sales of large varieties of chemical and biological materials to Iraq. These included anthrax, components of mustard gas, botulinum toxins (which causes paralysis of the muscles involving swallowing and is often fatal), histoplasma capsulatum (which may cause pneumonia, enlargement of the liver and spleen, anemia, acute inflammatory skin disease marked by tender red nodules), and a host of other nasty chemicals materials.


There is more, but this should stop the AIP types from suggesting that Saddam was not greatly aided in his slaughter of Iranians, Kurds and "his own people" by the US. In fact, he couldn't have done it without them. Since he is much weaker now than he was then, it is hard to see how he poses any credible threat to the US. His invasion of Kuwait was not impeded by the US who promised to ignore it (see the Counterpunch article, though this fact has been widely reported elsewhere).

The only argument that may till be salvageable from the AIP types is the "Well, we did arm and encourage and make tons of money off him, but we've seen the error of our ways and want to put it right for the sake of the Iraqi people." Leaving aside the realpolitik decision to foment an uprising against Saddam and then abandon the rebels as documented earlier in this thread, let's assume that one is so naive and ignorant of history and of the behaviour of the current members of the junta that one actually takes this argument seriously.

Prove it.

Prove raining death and destruction upon the poverty-stricken populace of Iraq is going to be better for them.

Show us that the death and misery caused by depleted uranium, destroyed infrastructure, blocked medical supplies, chemical weapon residues and all of the anti-personnel mines and diesel and pcb's generated by a large military force anywahere are preferable to the way the Iraqi people would be living if sanctions were lifted and weapons inspections and surveillance beefed up to the point where Saddam couldn't shit without some record of it existing.

The CIA and the DIS say Saddam isn't linked to any major terrorist organization and he doesn't have any significant mass destruction capabilities. In response, Powell has some fuzzy satellite photos and a plagiarized essay that used ten-year-old sources.

You AIP types want to massacre defenceless women and children.

Defend your position with some facts.

The quotes from The Washington Post article can be found here.. The others come from a Counterpunch article.


From: Never Never Land | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
WingNut
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posted 19 February 2003 12:50 PM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
WingNut, I took issue with Moredreads' repeated misrepresentation of the facts -- something he continues to do in his "revised" response, where he still manages to avoid addressing the fact that Kurdish civilians were specifically targeted.

I fail to see how the reprehensible behaviour of the US in collaborating with Saddam in the late 1980s should change my opinion of genocide denial.



I am not suggesting it should. The article I link, however, indicates that the US blurred the story as to whether it was Iraq or Iran who gassed the Kurds. The writer also suggests the blur was a deliberate attempt to deflect criticism from a regime that was favored in Washington at the time and toward a regime that was out of favor.

That the story still has legs is a testament to the efficiency of spin and disinformation.


From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
writer
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posted 19 February 2003 12:50 PM      Profile for writer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Die Tageszeitung (a Berlin daily),19/12/02
List of American firms that assisted Iraq's WMD programme

[A - nuclear; K - chemical; B - biological; R - rockets (missiles)]

1.Honeywell (R,K)
2.Spektra Physics (K)
3.Semetex (R)
4.TI Coating (A,K)
5.UNISYS (A,K)
6.Sperry Corp. (R,K)
7.Tektronix (R,A)
8.Rockwell )(K)
9.Leybold Vacuum Systems (A)
10.Finnigan-MAT-US (A)
11.Hewlett Packard (A.R,K)
12.Dupont (A)
13.Eastman Kodak (R)
14.American Type Culture Collection (B)
15.Alcolac International (C)
16.Consarc (A)
17.Carl Zeis -U.Ss (K)
18.Cerberus (LTD) (A)
19.Electronic Assiciates (R)
20.International Computer Systems
21.Bechtel (K)
22.EZ Logic Data Systems,Inc. (R)
23.Canberra Industries Inc. (A)
24.Axel Electronics Inc. (A)


From: tentative | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
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posted 19 February 2003 12:51 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
To repeat:

Prove that war is

quote:
preferable to the way the Iraqi people would be living if sanctions were lifted and weapons inspections and surveillance beefed up to the point where Saddam couldn't shit without some record of it existing.

A virtuoso performance, Sisyphus. You've got rhythm, y'know? Such a shame you're a materialist. I have determined you are convertible.


From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Whazzup?
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Babbler # 1471

posted 19 February 2003 01:09 PM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Prove that war is


quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
preferable to the way the Iraqi people would be living if sanctions were lifted and weapons inspections and surveillance beefed up to the point where Saddam couldn't shit without some record of it existing.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


I'm assuming this is a joke. 1441 was adopted in early November, 12 years after Saddam was pushed out of Kuwait and ordered to disarm. It took another three months for the first U2 flight to be scheduled -- giving Iraq, of course, 48 hours notice and a precise flight plan. Is this the kind of surveillance you're talking about?

I've given plenty of sources from Iraqi Kurds who believe that a war against Saddam is preferable. Other Iraqi expats also believe that Saddam must be toppled. Doesn't mean that they all "want to massacre defenceless women and children."


From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
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posted 19 February 2003 01:11 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Whazzup, dearest: Do you want war? I still can't tell.
From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 19 February 2003 01:14 PM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
You AIP types want to massacre defenceless women and children.

Defend your position with some facts



Aw, what a cute little nickname, AIPs. Does that make you a PMD (pro murdering dictator)?

I'll just wait for skdadl to come along with a speech about generalizing and putting words in peoples mouths...can't be too long now.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
clockwork
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posted 19 February 2003 01:15 PM      Profile for clockwork     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Whazzup might be interested in this that I posted the other day.

http://www.nytimes.com/2003/02/16/weekinreview/16BURN.html

And I seem to have missed the other thread...


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Whazzup?
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posted 19 February 2003 01:21 PM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Whazzup, dearest: Do you want war? I still can't tell.

*Deep sigh* Well, it ain't about me, is it?

[Ignore the rest of the message if you don't care...

Yes, I think Saddam must be toppled with military force. No, I am of no illusions about Rummy's concern for the well-being of the Kurds.

And that, frankly, is where I wish protesters would direct their passion -- a million Londoners out on the street demanding that the West follow through on economic assistance and a commitment to a democratic Iraq -- what a wondrous thing that would be!

What I worry about is that the peace movement is pushing Rummy and co. in precisely the wrong direction -- to supporting a palace coup d'etat for instance, which would be the greatest disaster of all for the Iraqi people.

So there you have it.]

Edited to add: Thanks for the link, clockwork, which I saw already and appreciated.

[ 19 February 2003: Message edited by: Whazzup? ]


From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
ronb
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posted 19 February 2003 01:58 PM      Profile for ronb     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
What's the difference between an engineered "palace coup" and a US invasion to install a compliant Governor of occupied Iraq, aside from the catastrophic civilian death toll implied by the latter? Is this whole exercise about ridding the world of Ba'thism? Is Syria therefore next on your list for "regime change" by invasion?
From: gone | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
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posted 19 February 2003 02:09 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
But I thought we had just read (somewhere?) that getting rid of the Ba'athists is not in the cards, just top admin? Sheer pacification, not revolution, yes/no?
From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
WingNut
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posted 19 February 2003 02:15 PM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Besides, as already indicated in another linked story, the Baath party is to be maintained and in power.

And I appreciate your sentiments whazzup, but you can't change the nature of the beast and Rumsfeld et al cares as much about protests for war or for a free, democratic Iraq as they do about the Kurds. Which is to say, not at all.

Also, I think most of us would even support a military intervention if we truly believed it was humanitarian based. But we know better.

Maybe we could even accept the ulterior motive if we knew civilian targets including power, food storages and water pumps would be spared. But we know better.

And maybe, just maybe, we could even cringe and angrily accept that if we knew American military might and foreign power was excercised equally and that nations that abuse domestic populations and acquire weapons of mass destruction, such as Israel, would be subject to the same force as Iraq. But we, sadly, know far better than that.

And I will never be convinced that we need to punish evil dictators so long as the ones responsible for putting them in place and preserving their power go unpunished and able to continue unabated.

Because unfortunately, Whazzup, you are going after the Frankenstein and leaving the evil doctor working madly away in his lab.


From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
ronb
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posted 19 February 2003 02:16 PM      Profile for ronb     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Yes, I'm confused as to why a palace coup that would achieve precisely what the invasion would achieve - presumably minus US occupation - would be the most disastrous of the options. Is it because the Russian and French loan guarantees and oil contracts would remain in force?
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Sisyphus
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posted 19 February 2003 02:19 PM      Profile for Sisyphus     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I first read this in the Globe and Mail, but I can't link to it there. Why does this not surprise me? Oh yeah, pragatism . After all, as that great leader of the free world said:"If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier...just as long as I'm the dictator..."

quote:
Defend your position with some facts.

quote:
1441 was adopted in early November, 12 years after Saddam was pushed out of Kuwait and ordered to disarm. It took another three months for the first U2 flight to be scheduled -- giving Iraq, of course, 48 hours notice and a precise flight plan.

The first sentence and the first half of the second sentence are definitely facts. I'll take your word that the second half of the second sentence is a fact. So we have a couple of facts. Hmmm.

Chlorine is a poisonous gas with molecular weight of 35.5 grams per mole. This is also a fact.

I should have been more explicit, sorry. The facts cited have to logically justify why a war against Iraq would be preferable to other means for replacing Saddam.

(Since I think almost all, if not all, of the anti-war protesters think that this would be a Good Thing, let me state that you idiots who continue to characterize anti-war as pro-Saddam are flaunting your intellectual deficiencies to the wrong person. I don't care if you are incapable of reading comprehension. I will not patronise you for it by acknowledging that as worthy of response.)

quote:
And that, frankly, is where I wish protesters would direct their passion -- a million Londoners out on the street demanding that the West follow through on economic assistance and a commitment to a democratic Iraq -- what a wondrous thing that would be!

I agree, but first things first.

Oh and Iraqi ex-pats, i.e. people who are no longer living on the spots that will be hit with cruise missiles, have lost a little credibility as spokespeople for those who are.
Logical flaw alert: just because a person wants to see Saddam toppled by force doesn't mean that they care about the welfare of the Iraqi people. Some of those ex-pats are probably just put out that they're not living high on the hog in palaces at the expense of the Iraqi people.

[ 19 February 2003: Message edited by: Sisyphus ]


From: Never Never Land | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 19 February 2003 03:17 PM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
In a subsequent 1993 study funded by Greenpeace, Daponte updated and publicly presented her analysis of the Gulf War, raising the total Iraqi death count to 205,000. She estimated that 56,000 Iraqi soldiers and 3,500 civilians were killed during the war, and that another 35,000 died as Saddam Hussein crushed Kurdish and Shiite rebellions that rose up after the United States stopped fighting. The largest number of deaths -- 111,000 -- Daponte attributed to "postwar adverse health effects."


source

3,500 civilians killed during the war.
111,000 civilians killed due to adverse health effects after the war (due to sanctions).

versus

500,000 civilians killed due to ten years of sanctions.

There's my proof that military action is preferable to this phoney peace that the antiwar crowd is so desperate to maintain. Maybe somebody could explain to me how preferring to watch 500,000 civilians die slowly makes you "Pro Iraqi People".


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Whazzup?
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posted 19 February 2003 03:27 PM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
The first sentence and the first half of the second sentence are definitely facts. I'll take your word that the second half of the second sentence is a fact.

NEVER take my word for it, Sisyphus. Never. Taking somebody's word for it is what got you into trouble when you started "question[ing] the facile received wisdom of the "Saddam gassed his own people" mantra." You took the word of a disreputable source and ended up deceived. Check up what I say. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Evidence is a strange thing for you. Apparently, you feel justified in saying that Iraqi ex-pats "are probably just put out that they're not living high on the hog in palaces at the expense of the Iraqi people" without any evidence whatsoever. You feel justified in dismissing the opinions of democratically elected Kurdish leaders, and the opinions of ordinary Iraqi Kurds who were gassed by Saddam. Forgive me for believing that their credibility in any coming war with Saddam is rather greater than your own.


From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
WingNut
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posted 19 February 2003 03:30 PM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Ah, sheep, I see your logic.
So, this big dude has you by the throat choking you. As the life slips out of you, his partner comes along, puts a bullet through your head, and you should be greatful for a fast death. Is that it?

No? Okay, so this dude is instead choking a family member. His partner kills your wife, cousin, nephew, and several others and then the dude lets the kid go. Are you grateful?

C'mon sheep you can do better than that. The sanctions are being enforced by the people who want to bomb the Iraqis and are purposefully being aimed at medical, water and agricultural products. It is murder, sheep, pure and simple. And you would grant the murderer absolute right to kill any number more so long as a quicker more efficient method is used.


From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
WingNut
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posted 19 February 2003 03:37 PM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
You guys should have a look over here:
http://www.rabble.ca/babble/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic&f=2&t=003282

Has the inevitable sellout already begun?


From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 19 February 2003 03:43 PM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I just wish it were that simple Wingnut. I really do. I don't want to see another war in Iraq but I don't see any other way. Every good suggestion brought up (armed UN inspectors, expansion of the inspection programs) all depends on the threat of force being applied. I don't want to see sanctions continuing but when Saddam has a history of importing dual use items and then using them militarily (i.e. the helicopters used to gas the Kurds) I don't see an alternative.

I'm not some monster salivating over the thought of dead Iraqi children. I want Iraq to come out from it's burden of sanctions and rejoin the Arab community, the Persian Gulf community, and the international community, but I just don't see that happening as long as Saddam remains in power.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Moredreads
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posted 19 February 2003 04:10 PM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
WingNut, I took issue with Moredreads' repeated misrepresentation of the facts -- something he continues to do in his "revised" response, where he still manages to avoid addressing the fact that Kurdish civilians were specifically targeted.

Why should I adress the fuking obvious. You continue to be so obtuse as to misrepresent what I have said about this time and time again.


From: Canada | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
writer
editor emeritus
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posted 19 February 2003 04:43 PM      Profile for writer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
A War Crime or an Act of War?
By STEPHEN C. PELLETIERE

M ECHANICSBURG, Pa. - It was no surprise that President Bush, lacking
smoking-gun evidence of Iraq's weapons programs, used his State of
the Union address to re-emphasize the moral case for an
invasion: "The dictator who is assembling the world's most dangerous
weapons has already used them on whole villages, leaving thousands of
his own citizens dead, blind or disfigured."

The accusation that Iraq has used chemical weapons against its
citizens is a familiar part of the debate. The piece of hard evidence
most frequently brought up concerns the gassing of Iraqi Kurds at the
town of Halabja in March 1988, near the end of the eight-year Iran-
Iraq war. President Bush himself has cited Iraq's "gassing its own
people," specifically at Halabja, as a reason to topple Saddam
Hussein.

But the truth is, all we know for certain is that Kurds were
bombarded with poison gas that day at Halabja. We cannot say with any
certainty that Iraqi chemical weapons killed the Kurds. This is not
the only distortion in the Halabja story.

I am in a position to know because, as the Central Intelligence
Agency's senior political analyst on Iraq during the Iran-Iraq war,
and as a professor at the Army War College from 1988 to 2000, I was
privy to much of the classified material that flowed through
Washington having to do with the Persian Gulf. In addition, I headed
a 1991 Army investigation into how the Iraqis would fight a war
against the United States; the classified version of the report went
into great detail on the Halabja affair.

This much about the gassing at Halabja we undoubtedly know: it came
about in the course of a battle between Iraqis and Iranians. Iraq
used chemical weapons to try to kill Iranians who had seized the
town, which is in northern Iraq not far from the Iranian border. The
Kurdish civilians who died had the misfortune to be caught up in that
exchange. But they were not Iraq's main target.

And the story gets murkier: immediately after the battle the United
States Defense Intelligence Agency investigated and produced a
classified report, which it circulated within the intelligence
community on a need-to-know basis. That study asserted that it was
Iranian gas that killed the Kurds, not Iraqi gas.

The agency did find that each side used gas against the other in the
battle around Halabja. The condition of the dead Kurds' bodies,
however, indicated they had been killed with a blood agent - that is,
a cyanide-based gas - which Iran was known to use. The Iraqis, who
are thought to have used mustard gas in the battle, are not known to
have possessed blood agents at the time.

These facts have long been in the public domain but, extraordinarily,
as often as the Halabja affair is cited, they are rarely mentioned. A
much-discussed article in The New Yorker last March did not make
reference to the Defense Intelligence Agency report or consider that
Iranian gas might have killed the Kurds. On the rare occasions the
report is brought up, there is usually speculation, with no proof,
that it was skewed out of American political favoritism toward Iraq
in its war against Iran.

I am not trying to rehabilitate the character of Saddam Hussein. He
has much to answer for in the area of human rights abuses. But
accusing him of gassing his own people at Halabja as an act of
genocide is not correct, because as far as the information we have
goes, all of the cases where gas was used involved battles. These
were tragedies of war. There may be justifications for invading Iraq,
but Halabja is not one of them.

In fact, those who really feel that the disaster at Halabja has
bearing on today might want to consider a different question: Why was
Iran so keen on taking the town? A closer look may shed light on
America's impetus to invade Iraq.

We are constantly reminded that Iraq has perhaps the world's largest
reserves of oil. But in a regional and perhaps even geopolitical
sense, it may be more important that Iraq has the most extensive
river system in the Middle East. In addition to the Tigris and
Euphrates, there are the Greater Zab and Lesser Zab rivers in the
north of the country. Iraq was covered with irrigation works by the
sixth century A.D., and was a granary for the region.

Before the Persian Gulf war, Iraq had built an impressive system of
dams and river control projects, the largest being the Darbandikhan
dam in the Kurdish area. And it was this dam the Iranians were aiming
to take control of when they seized Halabja. In the 1990's there was
much discussion over the construction of a so-called Peace Pipeline
that would bring the waters of the Tigris and Euphrates south to the
parched Gulf states and, by extension, Israel. No progress has been
made on this, largely because of Iraqi intransigence. With Iraq in
American hands, of course, all that could change.

Thus America could alter the destiny of the Middle East in a way that
probably could not be challenged for decades - not solely by
controlling Iraq's oil, but by controlling its water. Even if America
didn't occupy the country, once Mr. Hussein's Baath Party is driven
from power, many lucrative opportunities would open up for American
companies.

All that is needed to get us into war is one clear reason for acting,
one that would be generally persuasive. But efforts to link the
Iraqis directly to Osama bin Laden have proved inconclusive.
Assertions that Iraq threatens its neighbors have also failed to
create much resolve; in its present debilitated condition - thanks to
United Nations sanctions - Iraq's conventional forces threaten no
one.

Perhaps the strongest argument left for taking us to war quickly is
that Saddam Hussein has committed human rights atrocities against his
people. And the most dramatic case are the accusations about Halabja.

Before we go to war over Halabja, the administration owes the
American people the full facts. And if it has other examples of
Saddam Hussein gassing Kurds, it must show that they were not pro-
Iranian Kurdish guerrillas who died fighting alongside Iranian
Revolutionary Guards. Until Washington gives us proof of Saddam
Hussein's supposed atrocities, why are we picking on Iraq on human
rights grounds, particularly when there are so many other repressive
regimes Washington supports?

Stephen C. Pelletiere is author of "Iraq and the International Oil
System: Why America Went to War in the Persian Gulf."



From: tentative | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
Whazzup?
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posted 19 February 2003 04:49 PM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Will somebody kindly bring writer up to speed? I give up.
From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
writer
editor emeritus
Babbler # 2513

posted 19 February 2003 05:01 PM      Profile for writer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Yay!
From: tentative | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 19 February 2003 05:02 PM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Yeah really. By the way writer, your german newspaper clipping seems to have ommitted several german companies involved in supplying Iraq. Coincidence.

Here's another view:

quote:
German involvement outstripped that of all the other countries put together, the paper said. During the period to 1991, the German authorities permitted weapons co-operation with Iraq and in some cases "actively encouraged" it, according to the newspaper which cited German assistance allegedly given to Iraq for the development of poison gas used in the 1988 massacre of Kurds in northern Iraq. It said that after the massacre America reduced its military co-operation with Iraq but German firms continued their activities until the Gulf War.


source


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Moredreads
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posted 19 February 2003 05:03 PM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Writer, Whazzup does not understand the point that is being made. Are you up to speed now?
From: Canada | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
writer
editor emeritus
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posted 19 February 2003 05:11 PM      Profile for writer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Thanks, Moredreads.

sheep, I know about German involvement. I also know some folks here want to pretend there was little U.S. invovlement.

I also know that the Kurds have been attacked many times, in many ways. In Iraq. In Turkey. In Iran. In Syria. I started a little thread that touched on this in the ideas section, but not many seem interested, so far.

It's funny how just posting information with no commentary makes some people soooo mad.

[ 19 February 2003: Message edited by: writer ]


From: tentative | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
Sisyphus
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posted 19 February 2003 05:12 PM      Profile for Sisyphus     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
NEVER take my word for it, Sisyphus. Never. Taking somebody's word for it is what got you into trouble when you started "question[ing] the facile received wisdom of the "Saddam gassed his own people" mantra." You took the word of a disreputable source and ended up deceived. Check up what I say. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Thanks for the lesson in fact-checking.

Had you provided a link to a source, any source, I would most certainly have clicked it.

Since it did nothing to support your case and I was trying to clarify for you the difference between pertinent and irrelevant facts (Check out the chlorine thing, eh! ), I thought I'd stop short of a trollish and, to my knowledge, unjustified insinuation that you make things up.

As to the War College report, whose author is quoted at length by writer, unless you can refute it point by point, you'd do well to try to understand what I was getting at with the "facile received wisdom" quote you correctly attribute to me.

Just because you agree with something plausible that appears in the news, doesn't make it so. Repetition doesn't confer factuality on a spurious claim. Even repeated repetition, by a trusted public figure with impeccable credentials.

Most people who were repeating "Saddam gassed his own people" ad nauseum as though it were a startling revelation to the good people of the Bush junta, couldn't find Halabjah on a map, weren't told that the Kurds certainly didn't consider themselves Iraqis, were aiding the evil Eye-ranians against a US ally and didn't know that Saddam was only able to get his hands on the gas because of US assistance.

Given that we had already been treated to the incubator baby story in Iraq Smackdown I, those of us who realize that fact-checking involves reading both sides of a story might think that parroting the propaganda of the Bush regime does not constitute research. So instead of doing that, I read Mr. Pelletiere's report and because I couldn't refute it initialy, did not dismiss it out of hand.

Perhaps this way of forming an opinion is foreign to you.
Nothin' I can do about that, Whazzup.

But to paraphrase the lone juror in Twelve Angry Men, I don't think I can support the slaughter of thousands of innocent people without talking about it first.

It makes me ill to see that there are so many who can.


From: Never Never Land | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Whazzup?
rabble-rouser
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posted 19 February 2003 05:16 PM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
That is true, Moredreads -- though I understand the point that you have been trying to make all too well.

What I don't understand is why an article that has been thoroughly debunked has been linked to in four different threads. Clockwork already linked to the article in this thread above. Can someone enlighten me why it has now been pasted in full on this thread?

Perhaps writer should spend more time reading.


From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Doug M.
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2325

posted 19 February 2003 05:17 PM      Profile for Doug M.        Edit/Delete Post
Putting the lie to Pelletiere's account:

History Lesson

(may require login)


From: Canada | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
writer
editor emeritus
Babbler # 2513

posted 19 February 2003 05:25 PM      Profile for writer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Sadly, we cannot all attain your god-like perfection Whazzup?.
From: tentative | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
WingNut
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 1292

posted 19 February 2003 05:25 PM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
And you know, sheep, I agree with you. I just don't think the US is to be trusted to bring peace to Iraq and the mideast. The US has always supported dictators over democracies. Nothing has changed. The bloodletting will not end when the bombs stop falling. It will continue under a US backed son-of-a-bitch.
From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
sheep
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2119

posted 19 February 2003 05:26 PM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
sheep, I know about German involvement. I also know some folks here want to pretend there was little U.S. invovlement.

Yet you only posted a list of 24 US companies involved, and ommitted the 80 German ones. Why is that?

You claim that some people around here want to pretend there was little US involvement. I think there are many around here who want to pretend it was only the US involved, and the US was the biggest culprit, when the facts don't bear that out.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Whazzup?
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 1471

posted 19 February 2003 05:29 PM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Had you provided a link to a source, any source, I would most certainly have clicked it.

This, presumably, is your idea of fact-checking. Bravo.

quote:
As to the War College report, whose author is quoted at length by writer, unless you can refute it point by point, you'd do well to try to understand what I was getting at with the "facile received wisdom" quote you correctly attribute to me.


Already refuted. Thanks also to Doug M. for providing (yet again) the link to the TNR article.

See also:

quote:
Those outside in the streets could see clearly that these were Iraqi, not Iranian aircraft, since they flew low enough for their markings to be legible. . . . .

The attack appeared to be concentrated in the northern sector of the city, well away from its military bases--although these, by now, had been abandoned. In the shelters, there was immediate panic and claustrophobia. Some tried to plug the cracks around the entrance with damp towels, or pressed wet cloths to their faces, or set fires. But in the end they had no alternative but to emerge into the streets. It wasgrowing dark and there were no streetlights; the power had been knocked out the day before by artillery fire. In the dim light, the people of Halabja could see nightmarish scenes. Dead bodies--human and animal--littered the streets, huddled in doorways, slumped over the steering wheels of their cars. Survivors stumbled around, laughing hysterically, before collapsing. Iranian soldiers flitted through the darkened streets, dressed in protective clothing, their faces concealed by gas masks. Those who fled could barely see, and felt a sensation "like needles in the eyes." Their urine was streaked with blood.


Human Rights Watch report.


From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Moredreads
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3393

posted 19 February 2003 05:29 PM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I do not think it should be dismissed out of hand, nor in its entirety, I think it has to be added to the eividence. It raises some very pertinent issues, directly and indirectly.

Indirectly it shows the duplicity of the US geovernment in covering up what happened at Halabja, but it also strikes two other key points:

Halabja was an atrocity committed against a civilian population in a time of war, a war in which almost every single Kurdish national group allied themselves with Iran. A war in which both sides were using poison gas.

quote:
Iranian soldiers flitted through the darkened streets, dressed in protective clothing, their faces concealed by gas masks.

-- from the above quote.

The Bush version of events has Saddam killing Kurds with gas as a sign of pathological behaviour, without justification (however weak they be) or precedent.

Whazzup why are you constanly lying and trying to cover up the fact that Halabja was an Iraqi town, occupied by Iranians and their Kurdish allies, and that the events too place in war time?

But I digress.

The fact is that this ethnic cleansing program more-or-less fits within the parameters of the "Stratgic Hamlets" method of counter-insurgency, popularized by Britains successful anti-communist campaign in Burma. Used to less good effect in Vietnam by the US, but also successfully in Turkey just few years before Halabja (19983-84). The latter events took at least 30,000 Kurdish lives in Turkey.

The only real difference is that people were not gassed.

Of course the main point is that if we were actively misled by the Reagan Republicans (very much the same Republicans as are now in office) about this and the baby incubator story, how are we to believe these new pretexts for this new war?

[ 19 February 2003: Message edited by: Moredreads ]


From: Canada | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
Whazzup?
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posted 19 February 2003 06:07 PM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Whazzup why are you constanly lying and trying to cover up the fact that Halabja was an Iraqi town, occupied by Iranians and their Kurdish allies, and that the events too place in war time?

Where have I done this?

The Anfal was much bigger than Halabja, Moredreads. 5000 died at Halabja -- probably 100,000 died during the Anfal. You and Pelletiere have stated that Iraqi gas attacks all took place in the context of war. This is not the case, if you bothered to research it at all. I suppose I could simply cut and paste entire HRW and Physicians for Human Rights reports for your edification (a la writer), but I doubt it would have any impact.

You might at least consider the evidence of Peter Galbraith, whom I've already cited, and a report from Physicians for Human Rights, which concluded:

quote:
Anfal began from the different assumption that, foreseeing a possible ceasefire in the Iran-Iraq war, it was time to settle the "Kurdish problem" once and for all. It was not intended as exemplary punishment of the Kurds for their presumed or actual collaboration with Iran or for supporting Kurdish guerrillas. Punishment not being exemplary if there is no one left to witness the lesson, Anfal was not intended to deter. Anfal was a "final solution," implemented by the Iraqi government, the Ba'ath Party and the Iraqi army. It was intended to make the Kurds of Iraqi Kurdistan and their rural way of life disappear forever. Only such an intent can explain the precise, neat, and thorough destruction of the already empty Kurdish villages, and the fact that Anfal encompassed virtually all Kurdish villages. Or, as stated by Ali Hassan al-Majid, a cousin of President Saddam Hussein who was, during Anfal, in charge of Iraqi Kurdistan and at this writing serves as Iraqi Minister of Defense: "Yes, I'll certainly look after [the Kurds]. I'll do it by burying them with bulldozers. That's how I'll do it."

Source.


From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Sisyphus
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posted 19 February 2003 06:40 PM      Profile for Sisyphus     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Whazzup, I don't want to argue this any more than what I'm going to say now because I believe, as I've said before, I think the War College Report was a propaganda piece.

There are much better critiques on the Internet than the ones you provided and there are books that are even better.

The point is, none of the links you cite offer proof that it was not Iranian gas or, at worst as described by Pelletiere:

quote:
This much about the gassing at Halabja we undoubtedly know: it came
about in the course of a battle between Iraqis and Iranians. Iraq
used chemical weapons to try to kill Iranians who had seized the
town, which is in northern Iraq not far from the Iranian border. The
Kurdish civilians who died had the misfortune to be caught up in that
exchange. But they were not Iraq's main target.

And the story gets murkier: immediately after the battle the United
States Defense Intelligence Agency investigated and produced a
classified report, which it circulated within the intelligence
community on a need-to-know basis. That study asserted that it was
Iranian gas that killed the Kurds, not Iraqi gas.

The agency did find that each side used gas against the other in the
battle around Halabja. The condition of the dead Kurds' bodies,
however, indicated they had been killed with a blood agent - that is,
a cyanide-based gas - which Iran was known to use. The Iraqis, who
are thought to have used mustard gas in the battle, are not known to
have possessed blood agents at the time.


Whether eyewitnesses in the middle of a gas and chemical weapons attack after days of shelling by the Iranians, while it was getting dark could really distiguish between Iranian and Iraqi planes is moot, in my opinion. Your quoted assertions to the contrary are no stronger than Pelletiere's case.

The point I have been making is this:

You believe your sources because they tell you what you want to believe, not because you have more proof. That's OK.

In this particular case, let me spell it out for you:

I think the evidence favours the conclusion that Saddam Hussein, as the commander-in-chief of the Iraqi forces killed thousands of Kurdish civilians in gas and chemical warfare attacks. Whether by accident or design, I don't think he cares a bit.

But to run around chanting "He gassed his own people." as though you had conclusive proof that this was the case, and that this somehow elevates Saddam to a level of evil qualitatively different from Uribe, Pinochet, Suharto or Duvalier is pure bullshit.
It is not heresy to question what the authorities tell you, Whazzup.

You're allowed to consider unlikely hypotheses.

It hurts a little at first, but you can get used to it.

[ 19 February 2003: Message edited by: Sisyphus ]


From: Never Never Land | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Moredreads
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posted 19 February 2003 07:18 PM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Now you are lying again. Lying, as in your definition of lying, which means to disagree or question your analysis of the facts.

First you try and establish that it is not true that: "...that Iraqi gas attacks all took place in the context of war."

...and then you bring evidence about Anfal wherein your source offers the analysis: "...foreseeing a possible ceasefire in the Iran-Iraq war, it was time to settle the "Kurdish problem" once and for all."

If they are foreseeing a cease fire, then they are still at war, no?

To this point, I would also like to say that I am sorry that you simply do not understand that I and Pelletier are saying two different things: While it is true that I am saying that it happened during 'war time,' Pelletier is saying something different: he is saying that Halabja was an 'act of war.'

In this context am willing to doubt any version of events, and ask questions, especially in the light of how convenient it is that the blame for Halabja, has so neatly been transferred from the enemy we hired Saddam to fight, to our new enemy Saddam.

I take it you've read 1984.

[ 19 February 2003: Message edited by: Moredreads ]


From: Canada | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 19 February 2003 07:28 PM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
If they are foreseeing a cease fire, then they are still at war, no?

Interesting point Moredreads. Reminds me of our discussion where you claimed that Saddam, in saying that he intended to live up to UN resolutions, and calling his troops out of Kuwait (lighting up oil wells along the way), meant that the war was over. And US troops bombing the retreating Iraqis was therefore a war crime.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
ronb
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posted 19 February 2003 07:40 PM      Profile for ronb     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
So now we see that the American command really was engaged in some pretty Saddamnable behaviour in that instance, yes?
From: gone | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
clockwork
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posted 19 February 2003 08:20 PM      Profile for clockwork     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Moredreads must be taking a page off of Rush Limbaughs debating tactics book. "Lies, lies, lies!"

The 1984 reference is a nice touch.

I think I'm now on Whazzup's side. Even if I wasn't I'm not exactly sure what the argument is anymore. Everyone agrees the Iraqi's used chemical warfare against the Kurds. Splitting hairs over acts of war and stuff… I want no part in that.

http://www.phrusa.org/research/chemical_weapons/chemiraqgas2.html

Does anyone know how to search for UN reports? Specifically for S/1 6433 and S/18852?


From: Pokaroo! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
WingNut
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posted 19 February 2003 08:25 PM      Profile for WingNut   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I think I have sentiments sympathetic to the writer I linked earlier on. It seems the belated shock is focussed on how they were killed rather than on the fact they were killed.
From: Out There | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
Moredreads
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posted 20 February 2003 10:17 AM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
So now we see that the American command really was engaged in some pretty Saddamnable behaviour in that instance, yes?

Yes, Whazzup I was going to raise this exact same parrallel in my original post but I took it out for the sake of brevity, I think I used the phrase 'gratuitous slaughter.' But you still have not figured out what I am saying, yet, not that you've trieed you'd rather call me a liar and slander me up and down.

Here's a hint: nowhere have I said that Saddam is not guilty of war crimes.

[ 20 February 2003: Message edited by: Moredreads ]


From: Canada | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
Mimichekele2
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posted 21 February 2003 01:22 PM      Profile for Mimichekele2        Edit/Delete Post
"Genocide in Iraq: The Anfal Campaign Against the Kurds" is the title of the most complete human rights report on the Iraqi campaign of extermination of the Kurdish population.

Written by Human Rights Watch, it concludes:

quote:
Relying in part on previously unpublished Iraqi government documents captured by Kurdish rebels during the Gulf War, Genocide in Iraq reveals a meticulously organized campaign incorporating prison camps, firing squads and chemical attacks. The campaigns of 1987-1989 were characterized by mass summary executions and the mass disappearance of many tens of thousands of noncombatants, including large numbers of women and children, and sometimes the entire population of villages; the widespread use of chemical weapons; the wholesale destruction of some 2,000 villages, including homes, schools, mosques and wells; the looting of civilian property; the arbitrary arrest and jailing in conditions of extreme deprivation of thousands of women, children and elderly people; the forced displacement of hundreds of thousands of villagers; and the destruction of the rural Kurdish economy and infrastructure. Genocide in Iraq is the product of almost two years of research, during which we analyzed tons of captured Iraqi government documents and carried out field interviews with more than 350 witnesses, most of them survivors of the 1988 campaign. As a result of this painstaking work, we conclude that the Iraqi regime committed the crime of genocide

Why are some people on Babble going to such lengths to underplay or deny genocide?

That issue has nothing to do with whether Bush's war plans are justified or not.

One can be against war in Iraq and still acknowledge the well proven fact that Saddam Hussein's dictatorship is guilty of a campaign of extermination against Iraqi Kurds.

It is possible to support other ways of dealing with Hussein's Baathist dictatorship than a war that would hurt the population. But one loses moral and political credibility by denying the undeniable.

It reminds me of conversations I had in the 1990s with various people of different political opinions who openly qustioned whether the Milosevic government of Serbia committed genocide in Slavonia, Krajina, and Bosnia despite thousands of pages of evidence from OSCE, UNHCR, Amnesty, Human Rights Watch etc.

Come on. We can walk and chew gum at the same time. Be against Bush and Saddam.

Saddam and his Batthists belong in front of a war crimes tribunal or in front of a firing squad (preferably Kurdish). Just because we want to stop Bush is no reason to let Mr. Poison Gas Hussein off the hook.

[ 21 February 2003: Message edited by: Mimichekele2 ]


From: More lawyers, fewer bricks! | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
ronb
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posted 21 February 2003 01:47 PM      Profile for ronb     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I assume you're berating Moredreads with this. He has been pretty clear, in my view, that he in no way denies Saddam's campaign against the Kurds is a war crime. He does, however, place it in a historical context that rather diffuses its usefulness as an argument for US military aggression in Iraq. Will a US intervention improve Kurdish prospects, protect them from this type of genocidal campaign? Less likely as the bartering between Turkey and the US progresses.

For some reason we all ignore Saddam's equally genocidal campaign against the Marsh Arabs click - an unspeakable atrocity that lacks the frisson of WMD that would render it useful for US propaganda purposes.


From: gone | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Sisyphus
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posted 21 February 2003 02:06 PM      Profile for Sisyphus     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
What ronb said. My intent in stepping into the Halabjah atrocity fray was not to defend nor vindicate Saddam Hussein, nor in any way mitigate the amply-deserved loathing that all right-thinking human beings should have for this gangrenous lesion on the butt of humanity.

However, the fact is that we being subjected to a propaganda war of a level of sophistication that makes Josef Goebbels look like a rank amateur, and this "He gassed his own people." was a rallying cry for the purveyors and consumers of the Bush junta's web of lies.

Let me ask this. If news is news and facts are facts, why doesn't it concern people that CNN news offers different coverage of the same events in Europe as opposed to what is shown in North America?

I find that very instructive in a chilling, cynical way.


From: Never Never Land | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
sheep
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posted 21 February 2003 02:16 PM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I don't think anyone around here is really saying they support Hussein, especially when they question the specific facts surrounding widely publicized incidents. But when you're opposing war with Iraq you are also supporting, in some tacit way, the tradition of looking the other way at dictatorships and oppressive regimes. It's not so great a sin. We all do it. We'd like to put Hussein on trial sure. He's a scumbag sure. Is he worth killing civilians over, rather than attempting to contain him another way? Maybe, maybe not.

But really, when I read this thread title, I laughed at the irony. Yes, I could see Hussein taking out Bagdahd and himself in a blaze of glory to pin the blame on the evil one.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Sisyphus
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Babbler # 1425

posted 21 February 2003 02:24 PM      Profile for Sisyphus     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Yes sheep, I agree, and there's the rub. No matter how self-serving, immoral, mendacious and treacherous one side is, I don't believe that we can think for a moment that the other side would stop short for purely ehtical reasons.

One thing I'll never understand, for example, is why that British MP televised an interview with Saddam. Did anyone seriously expect that the only truth that would escape his lips wouldn't be that which worked to his advantage?


From: Never Never Land | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Whazzup?
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Babbler # 1471

posted 21 February 2003 03:19 PM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Whether eyewitnesses in the middle of a gas and chemical weapons attack after days of shelling by the Iranians, while it was getting dark could really distiguish between Iranian and Iraqi planes is moot, in my opinion. Your quoted assertions to the contrary are no stronger than Pelletiere's case.

This is silly, Sisyphus. We have eyewitnesses. We know that Saddam used gas on the Kurds dozens of other times. We have tape recordings of Iraqi commanders specifically admitting to using gas against the Kurds. Pelletiere's only evidence is the blue lips of the victims at Halabjah, which suggested the use of cyanide -- there is nothing else in the article at all. Nothing. But as HRW pointed out, nerve agents (which Saddam repeatedly used) also turn victims' lips blue.


And this is just beautiful:

quote:
I think the evidence favours the conclusion that Saddam Hussein, as the commander-in-chief of the Iraqi forces killed thousands of Kurdish civilians in gas and chemical warfare attacks. Whether by accident or design, I don't think he cares a bit.

By accident? You aren't seriously suggesting the possibility that Saddam murdered 100,000 Kurds by accident, are you?


From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Sisyphus
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posted 21 February 2003 04:56 PM      Profile for Sisyphus     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Not sure why you want to keep flogging this dead horse, Whazzup, but I'll play once more. First, to re-iterate:

quote:
I think the War College Report was a propaganda piece.
There are much better critiques on the Internet than the ones you provided and there are books that are even better.

OK? If you want me to say "You are right, Whazzup, the evil dictator Saddam Hussein has killed many thousands of Kurds with chemical weapons.", here it is:

You are right, Whazzup, the evil dictator Saddam Hussein has killed many thousands of Kurds with chemical weapons.

quote:
This is silly, Sisyphus. We have eyewitnesses. We know that Saddam used gas on the Kurds dozens of other times. We have tape recordings of Iraqi commanders specifically admitting to using gas against the Kurds.

We had eyewitnesses to the babies being ripped from incubators. We have contemporaneous denials by the Iraqis that such attacks took place. We know that the Iranians also used chemical weapons against Iraqi positions at Halabjah and elsewhere.

quote:
And this is just beautiful:

Thanks.

quote:
By accident? You aren't seriously suggesting the possibility that Saddam murdered 100,000 Kurds by accident, are you?

*sigh*

Since we have the hair in front of us, let us split it, finally.

I think it is clear that Saddam massacred thousands of Kurd civillians with chemical weapons by design, on purpose, with malice aforethought.

I think it is also clear that he also massacred hundreds or thousands of Kurds as "collateral damage" when they happened to find themselves in the company of Iranian soldiers.

Since I don't feel the HRW reports you cited constitute a definitive refutaion of the Pelletiere piece, and it is the contention of that report that the Kurds at Halabjah were , at worst, victims of weapons intended for Iranian forces, I used the phrasing I did.

Notice the last part of the bolded quote.
Saddam didn't care and I don't think the victims would care what the motives were.

Edited to add: "You supply the pictures and I'll supply the war."- William Randolph Hearst

[ 21 February 2003: Message edited by: Sisyphus ]


From: Never Never Land | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Whazzup?
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 1471

posted 21 February 2003 05:32 PM      Profile for Whazzup?     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
OK? If you want me to say "You are right, Whazzup, the evil dictator Saddam Hussein has killed many thousands of Kurds with chemical weapons.", here it is:

You are right, Whazzup, the evil dictator Saddam Hussein has killed many thousands of Kurds with chemical weapons.


Frankly, Sisyphus, I don't care what you or Moredreads or ronb choose to believe about what happened during the Anfal. Readers who follow these threads with an open mind, however, are another matter. It would be profoundly distressing to me if anyone else on this board would start believing that, as you write, "the Kurds at Halabjah were, at worst, victims of weapons intended for Iranian forces."

At worst.

No, Sisyphus, "at worst" they were dead. Along with tens of thousands of other victims of that "evil dictator," as you so smirkingly call him.


From: Under the Rubble | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Mimichekele2
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3232

posted 21 February 2003 07:03 PM      Profile for Mimichekele2        Edit/Delete Post
Sorry, at the risk of being repetitive - as the research points out, there was a systematic years-long campaign of deliberate genocide against Iraq's Kurds on the part of the Ba'ath government.

One has to deal with the question of the nature of Ba'athism headon because a) it is a real issue even if there were no Iraq crisis right now and because b) to not deal with it means it will be thrown right back at us by Blair and others (and rightfully so I am obliged to add). We can't continue to say we do not support Saddam Hussein and then refuse to do anything to directly help Iraqis get rid of their tyrant. That position has little moral strength or credibility (and I think many of us know that).

Jonathan Freedland article in The Guardian

quote:
we need an answer to the argument which has become Tony Blair's favourite in recent days: that war is needed to topple a cruel tyrant who has drowned his people in misery. In this view, the coming conflict is a war of liberation which will cost some Iraqi lives at first, to be sure, but which will save many more. It will be a moral war to remove an immoral regime. To oppose it is to keep Saddam in power.
This is a much harder case for the anti-war movement to swat aside. We have to take it seriously, if only because no slogan will sink the peace cause faster than "anti-war equals pro-Saddam". And the anti-war movement has made itself vulnerable to that charge. Tony Benn's patsy interview with the dictator was a terrible error, while aspects of Saturday's rally hardly helped. Few speakers paid more than lip service to Saddam's crimes; indeed, most seemed to regard George Bush as by far the more evil despot. Tariq Ali suggested regime change was needed in Britain more than it was in Iraq, while the official banners told their own story. "Don't Attack Iraq," they shouted, above a second line, "Freedom for Palestine." Why was that not "Freedom for Iraqis"? ... First, we have to establish that we oppose the Ba'athist regime with all the fervour now claimed by the PM. (And it won't do to bring out the yellowing scrapbook, and brag about all the anti-Saddam rallies we held in the 1980s: the issue is now.)

[ 21 February 2003: Message edited by: Mimichekele2 ]


From: More lawyers, fewer bricks! | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged

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