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Alternative Name for 'Smart' Sanctions
>We need to find a way not to get sucked into calling the sanctions 'smart'
sanctions. Voices has been using 'tighter' sanctions, which is useful. The
best I can come up with is the phrase 'smart sanctions are still
>sanctions', but any suggestions welcome.

It is rather important to control the language of the public debate.
However, one potential problem with the term "tighter sanctions" is that the
U.S. State Department (and presumably Foreign and Commonwealth Office) and
the press already use it (or some version of it) to express the following:

The U.S. (and presumably the UK) is just trying to

1.  "tighten the sanctions on weapons of mass destruction, tighten the
sanctions on armaments, tighten the sanctions on the sorts of equipment and
other materials that put the people of the region at risk", "tighten up on
his [Saddam Hussein's] ability to smuggle".
2.  "remove some of the restrictions on the materials that could go to
civilians and to civilian use"

See below for the above and other select State Department and press

One alternative is to add "economic" to Eric's suggestion and make it clear
that these "smart sanctions are still ECONOMIC sanctions".  They are not
exclusively sanctions on individuals (that, e.g., freeze GoI officials'
foreign bank accounts or prevent officials from traveling) and/or
supplier-side military sanctions on munitions, arms and single-use military
goods.  They adversely impact, exports, imports, the still "lamentable"
civilian infrastructure, and the capacity to pay salaries and increase the
purchasing power that so shrank after the enforcement of SCR 661 and is now
commonly abysmal.  There is every reason to conclude that the humanitarian
crisis will continue, as the new sanctions proposals are still economic

This could be a nice segue to point out that economic sanctions are designed
and applied to damage a target economy by disrupting trade and depriving the
target economy of resources.  By definition and as expected, the resultant
economic damage hurts civilians who depend on the target economy, especially
the most vulnerable (children, women, the elderly and poor).

"While the impact of sanctions varies from one case to another, the
Committee is aware that they almost always have a dramatic impact on the
rights recognized in the Covenant. Thus, for example, they often cause
significant disruption in the distribution of food, pharmaceuticals and
sanitation supplies, jeopardize the quality of food and the availability of
clean drinking water, severely interfere with the functioning of basic
health and education systems, and undermine the right to work". (Committee
on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (ECOSOC) General Comment No. 8,
E/C.12/1997/8, 5 December 1997, para. 3

See also the lengthy list of:

1. "direct effects (immediate)" -
* "Decreased Imports"
* "Decreased Exports"
* "Decrease in Communications"

2. "short term effects (intermediate)"
* "Health"
* "Food Security"
* "Economics"

3.  "long-term effects (chronic)"
* "Health"
* "Economic"
* "Social"
* "Political"

in Eric Hoskins, "The Impact of Sanctions: A Study of UNICEF Perspectives",
February 1998.  The main report is at and list at


State Department Briefing
Richard Boucher, U.S. State Department Spokesman
28 February 2001

Q On sanctions, could we go through it one more time? There are three
categories. There are consumer goods, there's military materiel, and there
are so-called dual-use things. I take it, while you're easing up on consumer
shipments, you say you're tightening the sanctions overall. How do you do
that if you're going to be easier on dual-use material, more permissive on
dual-use --

MR. BOUCHER: Let me go back to what the secretary said to you yesterday at
the European Union. He said we're going to tighten the sanctions on weapons
of mass destruction, tighten the sanctions on armaments, tighten the
sanctions on the sorts of equipment and other materials that put the people
of the region at risk. That is the direction that we're headed in. That is
the direction we discussed with people in the region, as well as allies when
we got to Europe. That goal, I think, that direction, is one that we found a
lot of support for. And it's one that we will work in further detail, again,
with the people of the region, with the allies, with the perm five, as well
as within our own government, as we go forward.

To do that effectively, we know, you have to strengthen the controls we have
on the oil-for-food money.

And part of the secretary's diplomacy was to talk to the Syrians and others
about bringing some of the exports that are not currently under the
oil-for-food money and bringing that money into the U.N. accounts so that we
have better control on that. Part of the effort has to be to tighten up on
his ability to smuggle. The secretary talked to you about that yesterday and
that will be another direction that we have to formulate details for.

The secretary, after his trip -- as you know, the trip was intended to
discuss ideas, to hear views, to gather ideas and to report back to the
president. The secretary has talked to the president this morning by
telephone, and to fill him in on many of the things he heard and discussed
during the trip. I think it's safe to say the president is pleased with
where we are on this and we'll continue working to develop the details.

As for how those details will affect this category, that category or the
other, I'm not in a position to come out with lists of prohibited items or
items for further attention or items that are fairly well assumed to be
safe. But those kind of details aren't developed at this point.

Q You have just spent most of your answer talking about tighter military --
the category of military items. We understand that. We were also told that
more consumer goods will be permitted to go to Iraq. And we were also told
that dual use would be reviewed with an aim of trying to take some of the
burden. Also, some heartfelt things were said on the plane about the way
these sanctions are falling on the Iraqi people.

So I'm asking how you're going to go about being tougher on military
equipment if, at the same time, you're going to take a more lenient view of
dual-use material?

MR. BOUCHER: I, again, go back --

Q Because there was a reason they would do -- there's a reason they --
(inaudible) -- in the first place.

MR. BOUCHER: Okay, let me give you the one-sentence version; the
one-sentence version of the longer answer I just gave you. If you tighten
the controls on the weapons of mass destruction and further define the
dual-use equipment that might be key to that process so that you can further
define it and control those as well, then you can remove some of your
restrictions; make the smooth -- make the civilian stuff go more smoothly.

And that'll be the direction. But as I said in my previous answer, the
details are not worked out yet.


Q It sounds like this plan's going to require inspectors on one end to
certify in Iraq what kinds of commercial goods are being brought in. I mean,
how do you expect to get the Iraqis to agree on inspectors --

MR. BOUCHER: I didn't -- I don't think that's been said, that it's required,
necessary to carry this out. It's up to the Iraqi government if they want to
invite the inspectors back in and implement the use --

Q No, not -- I'm talking about inspectors for the actual goods themselves.

MR. BOUCHER: We will take steps to tighten up on his ability to smuggle.
That's clear. There have been cargo inspections in the past, airplane
inspections in the past. And making the process work smoothly is obviously
something we'll want to look at.


Press Availability with Commissioner Christopher Patten at European
Commission, Secretary Colin L. Powell
Brussels, Belgium
27 February 2001

QUESTION: Mister Secretary, do you any have any comment on the Iraqi Foreign
Minister's statement that under no circumstances will the Iraqis allow
weapons inspectors to return? How does this affect your strategy for
re-energizing the sanctions?

SECRETARY POWELL: Well that's his choice. The ideas that we are
considering -- and of course no decisions have been made -- really are not
just re-energized sanctions. They tighten sanctions against those targets of
the sanctions in the first place. If we move forward with the proposals that
I have been shopping around the region, we will tighten sanctions on weapons
of mass destruction material. We will tighten sanctions on armaments. We
will tighten sanctions on all those sorts of equipment and other materials
that put the people of the region at risk.

What we would do, then, is remove some of the restrictions on the materials
that could go to civilians and to civilian use, so that he will no longer
have an excuse of saying that we are hurting the Iraqi people where the
intentions of the sanctions from the very beginning have been for the
purpose of constraining his appetite for weapons of mass destruction. We
will also do everything we can to strengthen the controls we have on the
"oil for food" money that goes to the regime. We have had some success in
the last couple of days in discussions with the frontline states in the
regions to tighten up on his ability to smuggle out things.


Press Briefing Abroad Aircraft En Route to Cairo, Egypt, Secretary Colin L.
En Route Cairo, Egypt
23 February 2001

Q: I just want to ask about the tightening of sanctions on materials to do
with WMD. That means -- how do you do this? You have to have inspectors on
every plane going into Iraq? You have bodies all along the border between
Jordan and Iraq? What are you going to suggest to the allies in the region
on how this can be accomplished? How do you do it?

SECRETARY POWELL: The regime that's in place now and the way in which UN
members and others have been following that regime have done a pretty good
job of keeping out the major arms systems going in.

Part of what I'm also going to be looking at  I'm glad you asked it, Jane,
because it gives me the chance to make another point. I'll be speaking to
the Syrians and the Jordanians and to others in the region how we do a
better job of tightening access into Iraq. If we are able, through this
consultative process, at some point in the future to all come into agreement
that we should modify the regime, then I think part of that modification
effort should also include how do we make sure we know what we're doing, how
do we tighten what actually goes in.

Now, the other issue that will almost certainly come up is how do you
ultimately get out of this? Under 1284 I believe he has an obligation 
Saddam Hussein  to let inspectors back in and let the inspectors do their
job. I think that part of this regime should be put the burden on him, that
he'll have to stay under this regime, whatever regime it is -- the current
one or anything that's modified -- until the inspectors are allowed in to do
their job.


"Diplomats said the aim is to tighten controls on security-related goods
while easing the ban on items that could benefit the Iraqi people, who have
suffered under more than a decade of sanctions. That suffering has proved to
be a powerful propaganda tool for Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, who has long
campaigned for the UN controls to be lifted". (Elizabeth Neuffer, "US Seeks
to Shift Iraq Sanctions", Boston Globe, 17 May 2001)

"The administration is seeking international support for easing the economic
embargo on Iraq while tightening the restrictions on Baghdad's ability to
import military goods and materials for developing biological, chemical and
nuclear weapons". (Alan Sipress and Peter Behr, "Bush Says Iran, Libya
Sanctions to Stay", Washington Post, 20 April 2001)

"After lining up support from key Middle Eastern states, Secretary of State
Colin Powell outlined a plan to loosen the 10-year-old United Nations
sanctions regime and replace it with a "smarter" system that shuts down
illegal Iraqi oil exports and tightens controls over militarily useful
imports". (Editorial Board, "Forging a New Iraq Policy", Washington Post, 4
March 2001)

"General Powell spent his three days in the Middle East soliciting support
for his sanctions plan, which he said would tighten restrictions on Iraq so
that Mr. Hussein would not be able to arm his nation with weapons of mass
destruction". (Jane Perlez, "Powell Proposes Easing Sanctions on Iraqi
Civilians", New York Times, 27 February 2001)


Nathaniel Hurd
Iraq Sanctions Project (ISP) Associate
Center for Economic and Social Rights (CESR)
162 Montague Street, 2nd Floor
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Tel.: 718-237-9145, x 21
Fax: 718-237-9147
Mobile: 917-407-3389
Personal E-Fax: 707-221-7449

*The contents of this message may contain personal views which are not the
views of ISP, unless specifically stated*

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