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Stratfor is a US "business intelligence" company. They provide a free daily "global intelligence update" by e-mail. The following is that for 3 October. I am adding this forward as they are incorrect when they claim, at the end, that Iraq's democratic opposition has not seen one dollar of the scant $97 million earmarked for the opposition by the 1998 Iraq Liberation Act. Some of this money has been disbursed to a number of opposition groups. It has been used, however, for "non-lethal" activities (e.g. training in office management). Some Iraqi opposition groups, most notably the SCIRI (Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq), have refused to accept US money, fearing that it would fatally damage their credibility. A reference for the above would be the BBC's 28 June 2000 story, "Gore: Saddam must go", available at: http://news6.thdo.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/world/americas/newsid%5F809000/809168.stm Best, Colin Rowat ****************************************************** Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq http://www.casi.org.uk fax 0870 063 5022 are you on our announcements list? ****************************************************** 393 King's College www.cus.cam.ac.uk/~cir20 Cambridge CB2 1ST tel: +44 (0)7768 056 984 England fax: +44 (0)8700 634 984 ---------- Forwarded message ---------- Date: Mon, 2 Oct 2000 20:50:12 -0500 (CDT) From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: email@example.com Subject: Iraq - Succession Stratfor.com's Global Intelligence Update - 3 October 2000 _________________________________________ Today's intelligence is tomorrow's news. _________________________________________ What else is on Stratfor.com? If you missed it last week, be sure to read our three-part series on the future of the war in Colombia, The Price of War, as the United States prepares to release the first in $1.3 billion in aid. http://www.stratfor.com/SERVICES/giu2000/092700.asp Would you like to catch up on the latest intelligence we've published? Just click on the Intelligence Index. http://www.stratfor.com/world/defaultindex.htm Coming this week: Our forecast for next quarter of 2000. _________________________________________ After Saddam: The Coming Succession in Baghdad Summary For years, the West has worried about Iraq after Saddam Hussein. Now, his succession seems within sight as Iraq enters the long- awaited transitional period. By speaking openly about succession, Saddam has bolstered rumors of his deteriorating health, long circulated by the opposition. His younger son, Qusai, has consolidated his position as the likely successor and will confront challengers in Baghdad. But Iraq will not tear apart upon the death of its president. Analysis Rumors that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein is dying of cancer have circulated for years and generally originate from marginally reliable opposition sources. Recently, several London-based papers reported that foreign doctors are in Baghdad treating Saddam's cancer with chemotherapy. The president gave only a short, rambling speech on the July 17 anniversary of the Baath party revolution, rather than the multi- hour oration of the past. Most important, the official Iraqi News Agency (INA) reported on Sept. 22 that Saddam talked about the issue of his successor during a meeting of the ruling Baath party. His mention of the subject gives credence to opposition reports and indicates succession has now officially become an issue for the Iraqis. The Iraqi succession appears clearly laid out. Contrary to years of Western speculation, Iraq is unlikely to suddenly collapse upon Saddam's death, engulfed by rebellions in the north and south. Saddam's younger son, Qusai, appears to have gained the upper hand over his older brother, Odai, in the upcoming succession. The largest threat to Qusai will come from a handful of men in Baghdad, not from a low-level military commander, or from separatist Kurdish and Shiite regions. Qusai Hussein controls every major state organ, except foreign policy. He is in charge of Iraq's security and intelligence apparatus, which includes the Directorate General of Intelligence, the General Security forces, Special Forces, and the Special Protection team, which oversees the personal safety of the President and key officials. Qusai also commands the military's elite Republican Guard (RG) and Special Republican Guard (SRG). Qusai is reportedly in good health, exercises regularly and sees his father frequently, according to Jane's Foreign Report. _______________________________________________________________ Promote global intelligence. Forward this newsletter to your colleagues and friends! __________________________________________________________________ Odai no longer seems likely to succeed his father. Odai does not have Saddam's support and more importantly, relies on his younger brother to keep him alive. A 1996 assassination attempt left him temporarily paralyzed and in generally poor health. Although Odai controls the state media and a small security force, he appears unable to pose a legitimate threat. In addition to other powers, Qusai commands a special battalion trained by the Special Security organization responsible for monitoring the media. Qusai appears to know everything that his older brother does and always remains a step ahead. More importantly, Odai has alienated important figures in Saddam's inner circle, such as Izzat Ibrahim, vice-chairman of the powerful Revolutionary Command Council (RCC), and Mohammed Hamza al-Zubeidi, speaker of the parliament. Ibrahim's daughter was married to Odai until he divorced her because the marriage bore no children. Odai then had aspirations of taking Zubeidi's place at the head of parliament, but Saddam put a stop to his eldest son's ambitions. Odai may have mental problems as well. Opposition sources reported Sept. 17 that Odai attempted suicide by overdosing on sedatives because Saddam officially named Qusai as his successor. Upon Saddam's death, Qusai's will be in a strong position - but he will face challenges. The presidency is a goldmine of wealth and economic power. Iraq contains the world's second largest proven oil reserves with potential reserves even greater than those of oil giant Saudi Arabia. Such vast potential wealth makes the Iraqi presidency a popular target for those in Baghdad seeking money and power. A palace coup, as opposed to an uprising from the Kurdish north or Shiite south, will pose the strongest threat to Qusai. Iraq's military structure ensures that a coup led by a low-level commander is extremely unlikely. Since the United States' Operation Desert Fox in late 1998, Iraq has restructured its military and placed a privileged few in command. These few could be presidential contenders following Saddam's death. Saddam's close loyalists -- Izzat Ibrahim, Mohammad al- Zubeidi, Defense Minister Ahmed Sultan, and Staff General Ali Hasan Al-Majid -- command the four military regions. These regions include regular army units and Republican Guard units. The better-funded RG units protect Iraq's borders and make sure no regular army officers decide to roll their tanks on Baghdad. Ultra- elite units of the Special Republican Guard surround Baghdad and protect throughout the city. Commanded by Qusai, this extensively funded force comprises only those whose allegiance to Saddam Hussein is unquestionable. This is the last line of defense in case the RG breaks ranks and decides to roll on Baghdad. __________________________________________________________________ For more on Iraq, see: http://www.stratfor.com/MEAF/countries/Iraq/default.htm __________________________________________________________________ Ultimately, a military coup against Qusai would be extremely difficult. The four regional military commanders loyal to Saddam have not necessarily pledged their allegiance to Qusai. And many high-ranking Baath party officials are not fond of the president's sons and believe that power should be throughout the party, rather than within Saddam's family. Qusai has repeatedly bought cars and other lavish gifts for Baath party officials to win their favor. The West's nightmare scenarios, such as successful foreign- sponsored uprisings in the Kurdish north or Shiite south, appear unfounded. Iran and Turkey support Kurdish factions opposed to the Baghdad regime but neither country would accept a Kurdish state on their border. Furthermore, Iran is not militarily, politically or economically in position to sponsor a Shiite uprising massive enough to topple Baghdad. Such a move would be equivalent to rekindling the Iran- Iraq war, in which hundreds of thousands lost their lives. Moreover, Iraq's Arab neighbors would oppose Iranian-backed Shiites taking over Iraq's oil reserves to become the predominate power in the Middle East. Revolts in the north and south will occur, but without foreign assistance or the support of an Iraqi military faction, Baghdad will promptly crush them. What about the United States? Would Washington support rebellion and partition? Despite its policy of supporting a regime change, the United States has proven on more than one occasion that it will not spend the resources necessary to replace the existing regime in Baghdad. Iraq's democratic opposition has not seen one dollar of the scant $97 million earmarked for the opposition by the 1998 Iraq Liberation Act. Moreover, Washington would be loath to split up Iraq, since it needs Iraq to maintain the balance of power against Iran, and certainly would oppose an Iranian dominated regime in all or part of Iraq. The United States will have to accept another strongman, and Qusai is as good as any. Clearly the heir apparent, the major threat to Qusai's succession comes from within. His brother may be weak, but Qusai may not have the full support of key Baath party officials. As the issue of succession increasingly moves to the forefront of Iraqi politics, Qusai will try to secure his position within the Baath party and particularly with military commanders loyal to his father. _____________________________________________________________ For more on the Middle East see: http://www.stratfor.com/MEAF/default.htm _____________________________________________________________ (c) 2000 Stratfor, Inc. _______________________________________________ SUBSCRIBE to the free, daily Global Intelligence Update. 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