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Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Trial Evidence

While we await news on when Saddam Hussien will be put to trial, I suggest a good reading of this. This piece contains a nice run down of events surrounding the Iran-Iraq war. Significant here is the Iran-Contra affair of 1986. Some items of good note:

November, 1983. A National Security Directive states that the U.S would do "whatever was necessary and legal" to prevent Iraq from losing its war with Iran. [1] & [15]

November, 1983. Banca Nazionale del Lavoro of Italy and its Branch in Atlanta begin to funnel $5 billion in unreported loans to Iraq. Iraq, with the blessing and official approval of the US government, purchased computer controlled machine tools, computers, scientific instruments, special alloy steel and aluminum, chemicals, and other industrial goods for Iraq's missile, chemical, biological and nuclear weapons programs. [14]

October, 1983. The Reagan Administration begins secretly allowing Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Egypt to transfer United States weapons, including Howitzers, Huey helicopters, and bombs to Iraq. These shipments violated the Arms Export Control Act. [16]

November 1983. George Schultz, the Secretary of State, is given intelligence reports showing that Iraqi troops are daily using chemical weapons against the Iranians. [1]

Rummy on the left.

December 20, 1983. Donald Rumsfeld , then a civilian and now Defense Secretary, meets with Saddam Hussein to assure him of US friendship and materials support. [1] & [15]


July, 1984. CIA begins giving Iraq intelligence necessary to calibrate its mustard gas attacks on Iranian troops. [19]

March, 1986. The United States with Great Britain block all Security Council resolutions condemning Iraq's use of chemical weapons, and on March 21 the US becomes the only country refusing to sign a Security Council statement condemning Iraq's use of these weapons. [10]


May, 1986. US Department of Commerce approves shipment of weapons grade botulin poison to Iraq. [7]


September, 1988. US Department of Commerce approves shipment of weapons grade anthrax and botulinum to Iraq. [7]

September, 1988. Richard Murphy, Assistant Secretary of State: "The US-Iraqi relationship is... important to our long-term political and economic objectives." [15]

December, 1988. Dow chemical sells $1.5 million in pesticides to Iraq despite knowledge that these would be used in chemical weapons. [1]

July, 1991 The Financial Times of London reveals that a Florida chemical company had produced and shipped cyanide to Iraq during the 80's using a special CIA courier. Cyanide was used extensively against the Iranians. [11]



and my favorite:

July 25, 1990. US Ambassador to Baghdad meets with Hussein to assure him that President Bush "wanted better and deeper relations". Many believe this visit was a trap set for Hussein. A month later Hussein invaded Kuwait thinking the US would not respond. [12]


Now that last bit would not be admissable in court and defintely would not prove anything, But the rest of the material is verifiable and should, provided councel is adequate, end up as evidence in any trial.

References:

1) Washingtonpost.com. December 30, 2002
3) Kurt Nimno. AlterNet. September 23, 2002
7) Riegle Report: Dual Use Exports. Senate Committee on Banking. May 25, 1994
10) Glen Rangwala. Labor Left Briefing, 16 September, 2002
11) Financial Times of London. July 3, 1991
12) Elson E. Boles. Counter Punch. October 10, 2002
14) Columbia Journalism Review. March/April 1993. Iraqgate
15) Tim Reid. Times Online. December 31, 2002. How U.S. Helped Iraq Build Deadly Arsenal
16) Bush's Secret Mission. The New Yorker Magazine. November 2, 1992

Note that links were not supplied for articles that require subscription services such as academic databases.

Links:
http://www.iranchamber.com/history/articles/arming_iraq.php

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