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News, 6-13/7/02 (1) CRIMINAL CONSPIRACIES * UK to send 30,000 to help oust Saddam * Bush to use 'all tools' for ousting Saddam * Barak warns Iraq, Iran next targets in terror war * US questions Iraq offer on MIA NEW WORLD ORDER CRIMES * US shelves a study on Iraq ravish * In the Killing Fields * U.S. argues need for doing it alone CRIMES OF THE TIMES * US seeks ways to try Saddam for war crimes * Put a war with Iraq in the diary for January * Iraq building up deadly arsenal, say defectors * Allies remain lukewarm * Iraqi sites for bio-war revealed by defector CRIMINAL CONSPIRACIES http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=%2Fnews%2F2002%2F07%2F07%2Fni raq07.xml * UK TO SEND 30,000 TO HELP OUST SADDAM by Sean Rayment, Sunday Telegraph, 7th July Britain is preparing to join America in a full-scale invasion of Iraq to oust Saddam Hussein from power early next year. The British armed forces are to commit at least 30,000 troops from all three services to an overwhelming air, land and sea campaign commanded by the US. In the past six months British troops' commitments in Kosovo, Macedonia, Bosnia and Sierra Leone have all been reduced in preparation for the attack. It is understood that President Bush has accepted that the US will not be able to replicate the size or make-up of the allied coalition that invaded Iraq in 1991 and is relying on Britain for moral and military support. American military chiefs believe that the mission to remove Saddam can be achieved with a force of about 250,000 troops, aided by an uprising of Iraqi dissidents inside the country. The Telegraph has been told by a senior Ministry of Defence official that Britain will contribute a division of 20,000 men composed of armoured and infantry brigades to fight alongside the US. The force would also be supported by up to 50 combat jets, an aircraft carrier group composed of frigates, destroyers and a submarine from the Royal Navy. The early spring is regarded as the "next best option" for an attack because the weather is still cool enough to conduct military operations in the Iraqi desert. It also allows both the British and Americans to build up forces and munitions depleted by the war in Afghanistan. A senior MoD official said: "Troops have been pulled back from the Balkans and Afghanistan in preparation for a spring attack against Iraq. The Army would contribute a division, similar to what we contributed in the Gulf War. "There would be casualties but soldiers join the Army to take part in military operations not to sit on their beds in barracks. I believe that the fighting would be relatively straightforward until we got to Baghdad. That's when it could get messy." Tony Blair and George Bush are known to have discussed in detail how Iraq should be governed once Saddam's Ba'ath regime has been toppled. The preferred option is to allow the Iraqi people to decide for themselves in a referendum. The British and US governments are concerned that any attack would meet with international opposition. The Telegraph, however, understands that Britain has "ample classified evidence" that proves Saddam has manufactured and stockpiled weapons of mass destruction. An MoD official said: "Justifying any attack would not be a problem because the evidence exists that he has weapons of mass destruction. It will not be made public yet because it would compromise the means by which it was acquired." http://www.dawn.com/2002/07/10/top18.htm * BUSH TO USE 'ALL TOOLS' FOR OUSTING SADDAM Dawn, 10th July, 28 Rabi-us-Saani 1423 WASHINGTON, July 9: US President George Bush vowed on Monday to use "all tools" at his disposal to oust Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, but declined to say whether that goal would be achieved by the end of his first term. Speaking at a news briefing, he said the world would be a safer place once Saddam had been overthrown and said he was personally engaged in "all aspects" of planning to achieve that goal. "It's a stated policy of this government to have regime change. And it hasn't changed. And we'll use all tools at our disposal to do so," Bush said. But the US leader declined to answer the question of whether regime change in Iraq will be a reality before the end of his first term, in late January 2005, saying: "It's hypothetical." The Bush administration has repeatedly threatened to topple Saddam's government, which it accuses of developing weapons of mass destruction. The New York Times said on Friday that a top secret US military document outlines a massive, three-pronged attack on Iraq by land, sea and air with as many as 250,000 troops and hundreds of warplanes. Bush, clearly unhappy at the report, which he attributed to some low-level official "flexing some knowhow muscle", said that people "shouldn't speculate about the desire of the government to have a regime change". But he also indicated that there is no urgency to act and that while the military option is one of a number being considered, there are "different ways to do it". "But in my remarks to the American people, I remind them I'm a patient person," he said. "But I do firmly believe that the world will be safer and more peaceful if there's a regime change in that government." Bush highlighted his personal engagement in the planning for Saddam's ouster. "I am involved. I mean, I'm involved in the military plan, diplomatic planning, financial planning - all aspects of - reviewing all the tools at my disposal," he said. EU SEEKS PROOF: European Union countries will not consider military intervention against Iraq until they see proof that Baghdad is producing weapons of mass destruction, Italian Defence Minister Antonio Martino said on Tuesday. "It has become evident from the meetings I have had with European colleagues that if the United States were to decide to take action in Iraq, European countries would not take part unless it were already proven clearly and unequivocally that Iraq was producing weapons of mass destruction," he said.-AFP http://www.iranmania.com/news/ArticleView/Default.asp?NewsCode=11092&NewsKin d=CurrentAffairs&ArchiveNews=Yes * BARAK WARNS IRAQ, IRAN NEXT TARGETS IN TERROR WAR IranMania, 12th July SOFIA, July 11 (AFP) - Former Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak warned Thursday that Iran would join Iraq as the next targets in the US-led war on terror. "The next step is to be Iraq and then even Iran," Barak said during an anti-terror conference in Bulgaria. The war's "first chapter" in Afghanistan "is coming to be resolved," he said, adding that "the success of this operation serves as a signal to all the terrorist leaders in the world and hosting regimes about the price that they will pay." He reiterated remarks made by US President George W. Bush that "it's going to be a long fight, not for several months but many years." "We have to win the first world war of 21 century and we will," the former Labor prime minister said. "It's not going to be a simple war," he warned. "It's going to be a marathon." Barak arrived in Sofia on Wednesday, when he met with Foreign Minister Solomon Passi and President Georgi Purvanov. Barak was pushed out of office by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon after Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat rejected a peace deal proposed by Barak and then president Bill Clinton at Camp David in July 1999, sparking off renewed Palestinian unrest in Israel. http://www.boston.com/dailyglobe2/193/nation/US_questions_Iraq_offer_on_MIA+ .shtml * US QUESTIONS IRAQ OFFER ON MIA by Robert Burns Boston Globe (from Associated Press), 12th July WASHINGTON - The Bush administration is rejecting Iraq's offer of a meeting in Baghdad to discuss the fate of a missing Gulf War pilot, Captain Scott Speicher. Instead, the administration will ask Iraq whether it has any new information on Speicher, officials said yesterday. The State Department plans to send a diplomatic note through the International Committee of the Red Cross asking whether the Iraqi government can offer new details about Speicher, who was shot down over central Iraq in his Navy F-18 fighter on Jan. 17, 1991, the opening night of the war. Speicher initially was listed as killed in action with no body recovered. But in January 2001, the Navy changed his status to missing in action, reflecting an absence of evidence that he died in the shootdown. As missing in action, Speicher was eligible for promotion, and last week his rank was elevated from lieutenant commander to captain, Navy officials said yesterday. Iraq says Speicher was killed in the crash. In a July 8 letter to Secretary of State Colin Powell, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said he agreed with Powell's suggestion that a note be delivered ''to confirm Iraq's intention to provide new information.'' ''If and when Iraq responds to your note, we can decide whether to propose a meeting in Geneva under the auspices of'' the Red Cross, Rumsfeld wrote. Powell had written to Rumsfeld on June 29, proposing that the State Department send the note. ''I completely agree that we need to explore every avenue to resolve this case and that we should respond to the Iraqi offer,'' Rumsfeld wrote. The Pentagon released copies of Rumsfeld's letter yesterday. At the State Department, Powell told reporters yesterday, ''We are in touch through various means'' with Iraq. ''We are anxious to follow every possible lead with respect to the fate of Commander Speicher,'' he said. Powell was chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff when Speicher was shot down. In March, Iraq offered to meet with US officials in Baghdad to discuss the case. The offer was made in a letter sent via the Red Cross. Some believe Speicher is being held prisoner in Iraq, although there is no publicly available information to confirm that. Iraq's March 19 letter said: ''Concerned authorities are ready to receive a US team to visit Iraq and investigate the question in the company of both a US media team for coverage and documentation purposes, under supervision of the International Committee of the Red Cross, and with participation of Mr. Scott Ritter.'' Ritter is a former Marine Corps intelligence officer and UN weapons inspector in Iraq who has criticized US policy toward Iraq. Speicher, then 33, of Jacksonville, Fla., was shot down by an Iraqi missile. NEW WORLD ORDER CRIMES http://www.boston.com/dailyglobe2/188/nation/US_shelves_a_study_on_Iraq_abus es+.shtml * US SHELVES A STUDY ON IRAQ ABUSES by Anthony Shadid Boston Globe, 7th July WASHINGTON - US officials have shelved an authoritative report six months in the making that investigates the purported role of President Saddam Hussein of Iraq and other leaders in war crimes. The move has frustrated human rights advocates seeking to set up an international tribunal. US officials say the report, by the State Department, was made secret in March to protect the identities of people they had interviewed. The report is said to include new documentation and interviews with dozens of witnesses. Critics say the decision to classify and thus shelve the report highlights a policy issue: The US government opposes the new International Criminal Court, and is skeptical toward international tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, and this stance all but rules out an international war crimes trial concerning Iraq. ''The United States has brought all this information out, has all these documents, has done all these interviews,'' but is ''not using them. It's all stored for a later date,'' said Joost Hiltermann, who researched allegations of Iraqi war crimes for Human Rights Watch in Washington, and who was consulted by one of the two Defense Department lawyers who prepared the report. ''They are prepared, they can bring war crimes charges against Saddam Hussein, no question. When the time comes, they'll be ready. But for now, they don't want to do that.'' The question of war crimes touches on some of the most contentious issues in US policy: international justice, the scope of the antiterrorism campaign, and President Bush's declared aim of overthrowing Hussein. While the Clinton administration publicly supported an international tribunal for Iraqi leaders - with enthusiasm waxing and waning - the Bush administration has said it prefers Hussein and other leaders to be tried in a ''liberated Iraq'' by Iraqi courts. That mirrors its opposition to the International Criminal Court, established last week, and its call for shutting down by 2008 the tribunals on Rwanda and Yugoslavia, which it says have been marred by mismanagement and abuse. In the future, US officials say, war crimes trials in Iraq and elsewhere should be handled by the countries' domestic courts. ''We continue to lay the groundwork to prepare for the day when we can pursue accountability for these violations. But right now, the recognition is that we'll only get so far,'' a senior US official said on condition of anonymity. ''The immediate problem is bringing democracy back to Iraq, bringing a responsible regime back, and bringing an environment that will allow for accountability.'' The New York Times reported last week that the US military has moved farther along with its plans for a military invasion of Iraq with attacks by air, land, and sea that would require thousands of US troops. But the report said such an assault is not imminent. Meanwhile, work continues on the war-crimes issue. The State Department plans to announce this week a working group of about 20 Iraqis and four international specialists to come up with proposals for what it calls ''transitional justice'' in a post-Hussein Iraq. The group is expected to look at questions of who would be granted amnesty, prospects for a South Africa-style truth and reconciliation commission, and how justice would be meted out to the government and its supporters. The group will be the first in a series sketching out the framework for a post-Hussein government. The report commissioned by the State Department had raised expectations as well. It was carried out by two Defense Department lawyers, Christine Choi and Misti Rawles, who wrapped up the work in early March. They focused on two episodes: the Enfal campaign in 1988 in which human rights advocates say Iraqi forces committed mass killings, disappearances, and displacement that amounted to genocide against Kurds in northern Iraq; and the uprisings after the 1991 Gulf War among Kurds in the north and the Shiite Muslims in southern Iraq that the regime brutally suppressed, at the cost, officials say, of perhaps tens of thousands of lives. In particular, the lawyers focused on the chain of command in carrying out orders - a key element in any war crimes trial. ''We weren't looking at what happened in Iraq, we wanted to see where the finger of accusation pointed to,'' the senior official said. ''Let's see who's in charge. If we're going to do this, we want to find out who bears the greatest responsibility.'' The report, he said, ''clearly shows that persons in leadership, many people in leadership, bear a responsibility.'' But it was classified in March, not so much for the substance of the report but rather to protect the identity of the witnesses, the official said. The State Department has no plans to share the findings ''anytime soon,'' even as a declassified version, he said. Advocates of a war crimes trial said they had understood that the report would be used sooner. Charles Forest, chief executive for Indict, a group that is investigating allegations of Iraqi war crimes and that provided information for the report, said he had been told the findings would be turned over to a UN-appointed commission of experts who would recommend actions based on that report and other studies. In May, the European Parliament passed a resolution calling for an international tribunal and the establishment of an Office of Inquiry that would prepare the evidence for such a court. ''I'm disappointed it's not available,'' Forest said from the group's London office. Hiltermann suggested that the mixed signals reflected a longstanding complaint by some human rights advocates that the United States has compiled evidence more for propaganda value or to justify military action than for a rigorous accounting of war crimes. ''I was frustrated with the handlers and the government,'' Hiltermann said. ''They sent these people. They did very important work, but the results are unclear. Nothing is done with it. It sits there.'' Mike Amitay, executive director of the Washington Kurdish Institute, a research and humanitarian group, said he, too, has been frustrated by the lack of US-led effort in convening an international tribunal. But, he acknowledged, the climate may be difficult now. Iraq remains a highly politicized issue at the UN Security Council, with the United States and Britain often lined up against the other permanent members. The debate over the International Criminal Court also has made such a push unlikely. ''Given the reluctance of the United States to adhere to the new ICC and other multilateral agreements, I think politically it would be very difficult for the US to take a role in the war crimes issue,'' Amitay said. http://www.newsday.com/features/books/ny c2774595jul07.story?coll=ny%2Dbookreview%2Dheadlines * IN THE KILLING FIELDS by John Leonard Newsday, 7th July Review of A Problem From Hell: America and the Age of Genocide, by Samantha Power. Basic, 610 pp., $30. (John Leonard, a contributing editor to New York magazine and The Nation, is the author of "Lonesome Rangers: Homeless Minds, Promised Lands, Fugitive Cultures.") Alexander Herzen, the gentleman-anarchist, once cautioned his bloodthirsty buddy, Mikhail Bakunin: "We want to open men's eyes, not tear them out." Samantha Power goes both ways. In one of her aspects - the journalist with the law degree who reported on ethnic cleansing in the Balkans for The Washington Post and then became executive director of the Carr Center for Human Rights at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government - she insists on our seeing the mass murders of the 20th century through her own wounded eyes, as scholars, jurists and diplomats try to keep up with killers by establishing courts and naming crimes. But in another aspect - angel of wrath - she would invade Cambodia or Rwanda all by herself: "When innocent life is being taken on such a scale and the United States has the power to stop the killing at reasonable risk, it has a duty to act." She is so furious at policymakers who turn their backs on that duty, who spin silky extenuations out of their bowels like managed-health-care spiders, that she would smoke or smite them where they bystand. Warren Christopher, for instance, the former secretary of state who gave Power the title for her book when he described Bosnia as "a problem from hell" - and thus beyond mere mortal agency. During Christopher's twiddle, the heretofore unheard of happened: Junior officers actually resigned from the foreign service on principle. Nor was the president, at whose pleasure Christopher served, such a bargain. Candidate Clinton may have rattled sabers on the 1992 campaign trail, but President Bill let Serbs behave like Hutus and Hutus behave like Serbs, until it cost him in the opinion polls. If Clinton seems Power's least favorite president, she is not much kinder to his predecessor, George H.W. Bush, on whose watch Yugoslavia disintegrated in the first place while his secretary of state, James Baker, so colorfully explained: "We don't have a dog in that fight." Or Ronald Reagan, who didn't care if Saddam Hussein nerve-gassed Kurds in 1987 and 1988, so long as Iraq continued to buy a million tons of American wheat a year. Or Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter, who were not about to go back to Southeast Asia no matter what Pol Pot got up to, from 1975 to 1979, outside Phnom Penh. As negligent as Franklin Roosevelt might have been about European Jewry during the Nazi Holocaust, he had before him Woodrow Wilson's example of choosing to ignore the very prototype of genocides to come - Turkey's massacre of a million Armenians in 1915. "It is the smell of oil and the color of money that corrodes our principles," said the Republican senator from Maine, William Cohen, about our coddling of Iraq in 1990. Cohen, along with William Proxmire, Bob Dole and Claiborne Pell, is one of the few members of Congress to end up on Power's list of valiant diplomats and journalists, troublemakers and whistleblowers who tried to stop a slaughter. Besides reminding us in searing detail just how it happened that 100,000 Kurds, 200,000 Bosnians, 800,000 Rwandans, 1 million Armenians, 2 million Cambodians and 6 million Jews were exterminated while we slumbered, she also wants us to honor those who couldn't sleep, as well as men like Raphael Lemkin, the refugee linguist who coined the word "genocide" and devoted his entire adult life to helping get a law against it into a treaty among nations. Still, the behavior of presidents is what most infuriates her. From Dwight Eisenhower on, they refused even to sign the 1948 treaty against genocide till Reagan did so in 1988 to escape criticism for his visit to the Nazi cemetery at Bitburg, Germany. Power is convinced, from hundreds of interviews and thousands of pages, that each administration knew the dreadful worst and didn't want to talk about it. That each, when it had to say something in public, cited "national sovereignty" before blaming "both sides," "civil war" and "ancient history" for what it called a "tragedy" instead of an atrocity, a crime against humanity or, of course, a genocide. That each, for domestic political reasons, chose to do nothing while claiming that anything it might do would be "futile" or counterproductive. "No U.S. president," she tells us, "has ever made genocide prevention a priority, and no U.S. president has ever suffered politically for his indifference to its occurrence." And she quotes the writer David Rieff's redefinition of the meaning of "Never again" after his experience in Bosnia: "Never again would Germans kill Jews in Europe in the 1940s." As an anthology of horrors from the equal-opportunity 20th century - Christians, Muslims, Buddhists and Jews, in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East - "A Problem From Hell" has so much ground to cover that it only nods in passing at Pakistan and Bangladesh, at Nigeria and Biafra, at Indonesia and East Timor. As a pocket history of what might be called the jurisprudence of the unthinkable - how to get to Nuremberg or The Hague - it might have wondered why the United States is so adamantly opposed to the very idea of an international criminal court. And as a fiery brief for our intervention wherever there are killing fields, it ought at least to mention American meddlings in Latin America and Southeast Asia that actually upped the bloody ante. But as an anguished reminder that state violence is still the leading cause of sudden death all over the world, it is a much-needed corrective to our generalized panic about terrorism. However confounded and twitchy we've become, looking over our shoulders in fear of ambush by the lunatics of one idea and the kamikazes of Kingdom Come, we should never forget the worst thing about the century just passed: What we knew of war in 1900 was that 85 percent of its casualties would be warriors themselves - and only 15 percent civilians. But according to the latest United Nations figures, by the end of the 20th century, that ratio had pretty much reversed itself. More than 80 percent of the damage is collateral. Which, of course, is insane. http://www.iht.com/articles/63799.html * U.S. ARGUES NEED FOR DOING IT ALONE by James Dao The New York Times, 8th July WASHINGTON: If anyone in the United Nations still believed that the United States sees itself as part of the family of nations, and not as its patriarch, last week may have come as a rude awakening. First, to the great dismay of its closest European allies, the Bush administration threatened to block all UN peacekeeping missions as they come up for renewal unless American peacekeepers were granted immunity from prosecution by the International Criminal Court, which came into being last Monday. The allies responded with howls of outrage, accusing the United States of trying to stand above international law and promoting double standards. Then, reports surfaced in Washington that planning for a large-scale invasion of Iraq had reached an advanced stage - even though most European governments had cautioned against such an invasion and none of the nations that would be expected to assist American troops as staging areas had been formally consulted. In fact, as last week's events point up, a double standard is precisely what the Bush administration is pursuing. As the world's lone superpower, the United States is increasingly the main guarantor of global security and economic well-being, administration officials contend. To treat it like any other country would defy reality, they say. "The United States plays a role in the world unlike any other," Richard Boucher, the State Department spokesman, told reporters last week in explaining the administration's position on the criminal court. "Therefore this affects us unlike any other nation." To many foreign policy experts, that worldview is a natural outgrowth of America's preeminent position in the post-Soviet world, which it dominates militarily, economically and culturally. And while many of these scholars fault the Bush administration for a brusque, even arrogant, brinkmanship at the United Nations, far fewer blame it for trying to control the international rules of the road. That, they say, is what all great powers have done through the ages. "You hear Europeans say Bush is a cowboy from Texas," said William Wohlforth, an associate professor of government at Dartmouth. "But when the Europeans were at the top of the international heap, they were hard-bitten realists about using power, and it was the United States that was trying to outlaw war." In an article in the July issue of Foreign Affairs, Wohlforth and a Dartmouth colleague, Stephen Brooks, argue that the United States' military and economic dominance over the world is no longer even debatable. They note that in 2003 the United States will spend more on the Pentagon, about $400 billion, than the next 15 largest militaries combined. And its economy is twice as large as its closest rival, Japan. No other nation in history, they contend, has exerted so much military power over the land, sea and air, while also dominating the global economy. "Today," they write, "the United States has no rival in any critical dimension of power." That disparity, says Robert Kagan, a senior associate with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace who lives in Brussels, Belgium, has caused Europe and many other nations to depend increasingly on American power for their security and prosperity. As a result, Kagan asserts, the United States must remain free to use its power at will, lest the world fall prey to lawlessness and brutality. "The United States must sometimes play by the rules of a Hobbesian world, even though in doing so it violates European norms," Kagan wrote in the June-July edition of Policy Review. "And it must sometimes act unilaterally, not out of a passion for unilateralism but, given a weak Europe that has moved beyond power, because the United States has no choice but to act unilaterally." As Sept. 11 demonstrated, America's vast power also makes it a target of resentment on many fronts - religious, economic, political and military. Indeed, the Bush administration argued that the International Criminal Court could be used to prosecute politically motivated cases against Americans. "It's disingenuous to say America won't be a lightning rod, given our position in the world," Kagan said in an interview. "French farmers are angry at the United States, poor Egyptians are angry at the United States. It's not Luxembourg that people will be aiming their grievances at." There is a strong temptation on both sides of the Atlantic to view the current fight over the criminal court as one more case of a conservative Republican president trying to implement a policy of unilateralism. And to be sure, Bush has built a track record of opposing international alliances, including treaties to eliminate greenhouse gases, restrict anti-ballistic missile systems, prohibit land mines and ban biological weapons testing. But there is also a long historical tradition in the United States of viewing alliances ("entangling alliances," Thomas Jefferson called them in his inaugural address in 1801) with suspicion. And, Kagan contends, with the exception of Woodrow Wilson's presidency and the post-Vietnam era, the United States has tended to believe that power is necessary to advance the American ideals of democracy and free markets to the world. Still, if Bush's views on the International Criminal Court were not out of the mainstream for an American president, his manner of opposing it might have been counterproductive. Past administrations tended to consult publicly with allies or work through multinational organizations like the United Nations or the International Monetary Fund, even if, behind the scenes, they used their power to get their way. President Bill Clinton, for example, also disliked the court on grounds similar to the Bush administration's. But he signed the treaty on the premise that it would be easier for the United States to change it as a member of the court. He then declined to submit it to the Senate for ratification. In May, the Bush administration invalidated Clinton's signature. Bush's more confrontational approach could alienate America's allies even as Washington looks to them for help in the war on terrorism. For all its power, the United States still needs the military bases, ports and airfields, fuel supplies and overflight rights that only its allies can provide. No invasion of Iraq would be possible without those things - and angering its allies over the International Criminal Court will not help the Bush administration get them, critics contend. CRIMES OF THE TIMES http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,3-352828,00.html * US SEEKS WAYS TO TRY SADDAM FOR WAR CRIMES by James Bone The Times, 11th July THE Bush Administration has been studying the possibility of establishing a war crimes tribunal to prosecute President Saddam Hussein, but is now considering an Iraqi trial in a "liberated" Iraq after Saddam is eventually overthrown. The transatlantic row over the International Criminal Court (ICC) has complicated US plans. A State Department investigation of Saddam's atrocities, intended to form the basis for an international prosecution of Saddam and other Iraqi leaders, has been shelved as Washington studies a possible Iraqi trial instead. The confidential report, compiled by two judge advocate- generals on loan from the Pentagon, focuses on the Anfal campaign that displaced Kurds in 1988 and the suppression of the uprisings by Kurds and Shia Muslims at the end of the 1991 Gulf War. Diplomats and rights activists say that the original goal of the investigation was to bring about an international commission of inquiry by the UN Security Council, leading to the indictment of Saddam while he was still in power. Apparently that plan has been abandoned as Washington is engaged in a dispute with its allies over the ICC, whose jurisdiction it rejects. US officials appear to fear that forming another countryspecific international tribunal, similar to those trying war crimes in Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, would undermine opposition to the new global court. Iraq also rejects the ICC's jurisdiction. The Administration is pursuing the alternative approach of preparing for a trial of Saddam in a "liberated" Iraq. This week the State Department hosted about 20 exiled Iraqi jurists to discuss "transitional justice" after the overthrow of Saddam as part of a series of "Future of Iraq" meetings. The first of these was boycotted by two key figures ‹ Salem Chalabi, a London-based lawyer whose uncle heads the Iraqi National Congress, an opposition group, and Kanan Makiya, the author of the study of Baathist repression, The Republic of Fear, which he wrote under the pseudonym Samir al-Khalil. But Charles Forrest, the head of Indict, a group devoted to securing the indictment of Iraqi leaders, said that the participants had engaged in a serious discussion, which included the possibility of trials of ousted Iraqi leaders. "The question is whether it would be better to do this under an Iraqi court or would the Iraqis prefer a special tribunal," he said. "All of this presupposes the Iraqi regime has been overthrown. What I heard was people really grappling with these issues, which are going to require a lot of discussion. "Saddam himself, it's highly unlikely he will be in the dock like Milosevic. But there are a lot of other people who need to be brought to justice." Indict, which is chaired by Ann Clwyd, the Labour MP, is focusing on 27 Iraqis suspected of committing war crimes. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,482-351895,00.html * PUT A WAR WITH IRAQ IN THE DIARY FOR JANUARY by Tim Hames The Times, 10th July Despite the political inconvenience Bernie Ebbers has caused in the past few weeks, George W. Bush does not view the WorldCom boss as the main megalomaniac he has to deal with. The President yesterday called for tough laws and longer jail sentences for those who distort corporate balance sheets, but fell short of saying that he favoured any "regime change" on Wall Street or that "we will use all the weapons at our disposal" to achieve one. There is no court in America which could impose the sort of sentence on errant business executives that Mr Bush intends to make mandatory for President Saddam Hussein. The relative quiet in Washington in the six months since the President made his "axis of evil" State of the Union address should not be mistaken for inactivity. The Administration has made the decision to eject Saddam, almost certainly in January and February next year, unless the Iraqi dictator has been deposed by then, or the UN weapons inspectors have returned with the cast-iron mandate to work at will. And when that Iraqi operation starts, the repercussions will be considerable, but paradoxical. The reaction in Western Europe will be more genuinely hostile than that of those in charge of many Middle Eastern nations. In a further twist, the prospect of a swift American military triumph will again trigger far more concern in Berlin and Paris than Amman or Cairo. There are three reasons why an American intervention in Iraq is all but booked. The first is the transformation in US foreign policy thinking in the aftermath of September 11. The second is the conviction of the current White House that the feeble policies pursued by Bill Clinton against Saddam encouraged not only Iraq, but others, to believe that the United States was weak and vulnerable. The third is that there is no other blueprint for dealing with Baghdad that has the remotest shred of credibility. The claim that a US military operation would succeed at speed is born not out of arrogance but realism. A force of 250,000 men (or about half the total deployed in the 1991 Gulf War) would have to be assembled, but it is a matter of debate whether anything like that number would be needed in practice. The chances of a coup being effected against Saddam, once it became clear that the US was determined to act, or after the air war had been initiated, are higher than often allowed for. If a formal invasion were to take place, the prediction among pessimistic neutral professionals is that Iraq would be conquered in eight weeks, and this assumes that the US Army would face notable resistance. Three factors make that assumption contestable. The first is that it is fashionable either to underestimate the degree of popular loathing felt towards Saddam or to dismiss it as inconsequential. But the majority of Iraqis would consider Mr Bush their liberator. The second is that Saddam's own repression and his determination that his son Qusay will succeed him has upset the equilibrium between family clans that is the essence of traditional Iraqi society. Almost every other section of the elite has an incentive to prevent son following father. The third element concerns the Iraqi Armed Forces. Saddam is not, despite his enthusiasm for their garb, a career soldier. Qusay, although afflicted with the very same bug for the dressing-up box, has weaker links still with the military. Although the army in Iraq has historically been reluctant to interfere in domestic politics, Saddam's willingness to place personal cronies in top slots regardless of efficiency, service record, or seniority has shifted the argument. Once it is obvious that Washington is committed to the fight, the best outcome, from the army's standpoint, would be to be shot of Saddam quickly. Other Middle Eastern rulers, long subject to the inconvenience of Saddam's inconsistent habits and aware that what is coming will be the mother of all walkovers, would adopt a pragmatic attitude. Ritual distaste may be expressed in public, but private energy would be devoted to carving up the spoils. The oil market, especially, would be transformed if a US approved figure were established in Baghdad. It would be a change to match, and in many ways cancel out, the fall of the Shah in Iran 23 years ago. In Western Europe, though, an awesome demonstration of raw American power would be taken rather differently. The crowds would not take to the streets to hail the termination of the world's most dangerous weapons of mass destruction project. The complaints would be of American "unilateralism" and "hegemony". They would be amplified by the fact that in most EU countries the Left is in opposition and unencumbered by any sense of diplomatic responsibility. That a US invasion of Iraq might be popular with that country's citizens would not stop it being condemned as "imperialism". The same would be true, if perhaps at a slightly lower decible level, in Britain. The Prime Minister will sense, accurately, that he has little choice but to back Mr Bush in fairly robust terms and provide a modest amount of military assistance. The Labour Party would revolt to some degree and ministerial resignations would occur but, because Labour is in office, the rebellion should be manageable. Tony Blair's preferred foreign policy would, nonetheless, be shaken as he sought to reconcile his stance that Britain's "destiny" lies in Europe with the prominence of the Anglo-American alliance. The Tories would hardly be in a position to exploit any public backlash that takes place as their position on Iraq is, if anything, slightly to the right of that held by Donald Rumsfeld. All of which leaves the possibility of one last paradox. Namely, that the British politician who could be the short-term winner from a one-sided battle between Mr Bush and Saddam is Charles Kennedy. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,3-352924,00.html * IRAQ BUILDING UP DEADLY ARSENAL, SAY DEFECTORS by Michael Evans, Defence Editor and Roland Watson The Times, 11th July SADDAM HUSSEIN has made important progress in developing weapons of mass destruction capable of killing millions of people, senior Iraqi defectors say. That suggests that the Iraqi leader is pressing ahead with all three elements of his secret weapons project: nuclear, chemical and biological. The analysis is based on material gained from officials who worked on the programme and Intelligence on Iraqi agents trying to buy dual-use components. The nuclear threat should not be exaggerated. Before the launch of the US-led offensive against Iraqi forces in Kuwait in 1991, Saddam was close to developing a bomb. But today, with most of the nuclear infrastructure destroyed, including uranium-enrichment plants, the Iraqi leader is a long way from achieving his ambition to become a nuclear weapons power in the region. However, there have been sinister signs of clandestine procurement of systems vital for producing bomb-grade fissile material. It is believed that Iraq recently has acquired components for flow-forming machines, which are used in the uranium-enrichment process. However, without the fissile material removed by the International Atomic Energy Agency after the Gulf War Saddam poses no real nuclear threat for the moment. The production of biological agents such as anthrax, botulinum toxin and ricin, can be carried out under cover of legitimate pharmaceutical plants and small laboratories which remained intact after the Gulf War. Terence Taylor, a UN weapons inspector in Iraq for four years up to 1997, said he believed Saddams biological arsenal posed the greatest immediate threat. Since 1998, when the UN inspectors withdrew, Iraq has failed to account for 17 tons of growth media used for culturing anthrax and other biological agents. "We dont know whats happened to it. Its expensive stuff and not the sort of stuff you would lose," said Mr Taylor, president of the International Institute for Strategic Studies in Washington. He said there were also 4,000 tons of chemicals which could be used in the manufacture of VX nerve gas with no satisfactory explanation, and thousands of tons of chemical weapons munitions. There is also evidence of Iraq switching production back to biological agents. Saddam has rebuilt part of the al-Daura vaccine plant, which was destroyed by the UN weapons inspectors because it was directly used in the production of biological agents. Intelligence experts agree it is likely that Saddam has the capability of producing militarily significant quantities of biological agents, and that he also retained a viable chemical weapons stockpile. Key to Iraqs ability to launch weapons of mass destruction is the state of its ballistic missile programme. The ballistic missile facilities were virtually destroyed in the Gulf War and by UN inspectors. But there is intelligence evidence that Iraq may be co-operating with Syria in trying to develop longer-range surface-to-surface missiles, based on the Russian Scud system. Several Iraqi officers known to be ballistic-missile experts have visited Damascus this year. The Iraqi officers in Syria are believed to be training Syrian missile units in the art of launching weapons. In return, the fear is that Syria will provide parts for a new Iraqi extended-range missile. Apart from defectors and the monitoring of Iraqs known smuggling routes for dual-use components, not even Americas sophisticated technical intelligence-gathering systems can uncover what Saddam is really up to. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,3-352827,00.html * ALLIES REMAIN LUKEWARM by Roland Watson The Times, 11th July AMERICA'S allies in the War on Terror have been at best lukewarm and at worst hostile to the prospect of a US invasion of Iraq, but that could all change if President Saddam Hussein plays his hand badly and Washington is able to execute his swift overthrow. Russia, a traditional ally of Baghdad, has told the United States to keep its distance. President Putin is expected to maintain firm opposition to the idea of an American invasion, at least in public. However, US officials hope that the promise of oil contracts with a successor regime, together with access to the $8 billion that Russia is owed by Iraq, will earn Mr Putin's tacit approval. Japan has been careful not to draw a line against attacks against Baghdad. When Mr Bush met Junichiro Koizumi, the Prime Minister, in February, they discussed the issue. Mr Koizumi said he believed that the President was being "careful and cautious" on Iraq, but stopped short of voicing opposition to action. Since then US officials have asked Japan to be prepared to send Aegis warships and anti submarine patrol aircraft to the Arabian Sea to stand in for US forces, who would be moved closer to the action in the Gulf in the event of an attack. Such a move may be unconstitutional, given Japan's tight restrictions on the role of the military, but the very fact of the request reveals that Washington believes that it can count on diplomatic support from Japan. China, which has far closer ties with Baghdad than the West, has said that it does not support the extension of the War on Terror to Iraq. But Beijing has also said that it hopes Iraq improves co-operation with the United Nations and relations in the Gulf. When Mr Bush visited Beijing in February President Jiang Zemin promised to "step up consultation and co-operation" in the campaign against terrorism, ducking questions about possible attacks on Iraq. Beijing would be expected to criticise an American assault heavily if it circumvented the UN, but its tone would depend on how Saddam had acted in the preceding weeks and months. Analysts expect that the reaction would be entirely pragmatic in the event of a quick outcome. France has said that it would oppose military action without conclusive proof of Baghdad's role in exporting terror, but it is one of the countries best-placed to benefit commercially from a new regime. US officials hope that its opposition may be tempered in the coming months. Gerhard Schröder, the German Chancellor, has expressed opposition to unilateral US action, but his nation may be in different hands by the time an assault is launched. Whatever the international position now, US officials believe that everything would look different if the Pentagon was able to prosecute a quick and conclusive campaign. "If it's decisive and successful, everyone will fall into line behind it. If it's not, they'll be against it," one official said. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,3-353672,00.html * IRAQI SITES FOR BIO-WAR REVEALED BY DEFECTOR by James Bone The Times, 12th July A DEFECTOR with first-hand knowledge of more than 30 secret biological weapons laboratories inside Iraq has played a key role in hardening Washington's policy towards Iraq. Adnan Saeed al-Haideri, a civil engineer who maintained biological and chemical ³clean rooms² for the Iraqi Government, is believed to be in a safe house in the Washington area after being debriefed by the Defence Intelligence Agency. Mr al-Haideri, the managing director of the Al Fao construction firm who escaped from Iraq last year, has given DIA officials details of secret biological and chemical weapons work taking place in at least eight locations. ³My feeling, and I have dealt with this for about 11 years, is that he has been the most important and least talked about defector since the Gulf War,² said Nabeel Musawi, who spent three weeks debriefing him in Bangkok late last year. ³The things he was describing all fit together. The locations all fit together,² said a former American weapons inspector in Iraq, who reviewed some of the material he brought out. ³The guy was dead-on.² Mr al-Haideri first became involved with Iraq's secret weapons programme in 1992 when he was invited to replace a German contractor doing work at Salman Pak, a large complex on a bend in the Tigris River that originally was home to Iraq's nuclear programme. He remained so until he was arrested in January last year when the authorities discovered that he was an Iraqi Kurd. He escaped Iraq after being freed, fearing that he was to be killed. Mr al-Haideri went public with some allegations ‹ including the existence of a secret biological laboratory underneath the Saddam Hussein hospital in central Baghdad ‹ in an interview with The New York Times while in exile in Bangkok in December. But he has since been moved to the United States where not even his family in Australia can reach him. Mr Musawi provided chilling new details of what Mr al-Haideri has told American Intelligence about how Saddam outwitted United Nations weapons inspectors and US surveillance efforts. ³His involvement was quite extensive after 1992,² Mr Musawi said. ³He was involved in building or rebuilding labs all over the capital, particularly on the southern side of the capital. ³The things they have to use in these clean rooms are so specific,² he said. ³The tiles are chemically treated and have to be imported from Germany.² As well as the lab beneath the Saddam Hussein hospital, Mr al-Haideri identified at least seven other locations where biological or chemical weapons work was going on and said there were more than 30 clean rooms in all. Some of the clean rooms were in well known complexes, such as the Rawanya presidential complex in Baghdad. Facilities at al-Taji, west of Baghdad, for instance, were rebuilt after the withdrawal of UN inspectors in 1998. At al-Misayad, which was extensively damaged in the Gulf War, only one building out of 30 was rebuilt so that it seemed as though the site was derelict. Other labs were built in new locations. One complex between Abu Ghraib and Mahmodia, south of Baghdad, works only at night for security reasons so that it appears to be unused. Another has been built in the Quraiyap residential district of Baghdad. Mr al-Haideri's company was instructed to build everything in duplicate, so that there was always a fall-back location if one was damaged. ³For a biological programme, all you need is a sealed room four metres by four metres,² Mr Musawi said. _______________________________________________ Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-discuss To contact the list manager, email firstname.lastname@example.org All postings are archived on CASI's website: http://www.casi.org.uk