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News, 6/9-13/9/02 (3) EUROPEAN OPINION * German position on Iraq could be destabilizing for allies * Iraq war not imminent, says NATO general [General Harald Kujat] * 9.11 - Looking at us * Finland opposes war on Iraq * Schroeder, Stoiber Debate Iraq on TV * Vatican speaks out on Iraq crisis * Chirac backs inspection deadline * Bulgaria, Portugal Back Bush on Iraq at U.N. * Chirac discuss with Saudi foreign minister the Iraqi situation * Germany rebukes general [Kujat ] for not ruling out Iraq attack * Spain pledges support for U.S. on Iraq UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY * Annan Urges U.S. Not to Act Alone Against Iraq * Iraq's U.N. ambassador blasts Bush's speech, says it lacks credibility * Bush speech on Iraq to the UN EUROPEAN OPINION http://www.iht.com/articles/69944.html * GERMAN POSITION ON IRAQ COULD BE DESTABILIZING FOR ALLIES by John Vinocur International Herald Tribune, 6th September MUNICH: For the first time since 1945, Germany's leadership has moved to totally separate its policy from that of the United States on an issue of war and peace. The subject is Iraq and the decision is taking shape in the tense context of national elections later this month. Unlike any of the United States' other NATO allies, the German government of Social Democrats and Greens has chosen to reject any military participation, even with United Nations and European Union mandates, in an American-led strike against the regime of Saddam Hussein. As the campaign progresses, and Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer reiterate daily their commitment to a position that isolates Germany from the United States and its other North Atlantic Treaty Organization allies. The German choice takes on the potential of becoming a profound and destabilizing development for both the United States and Europe. With Edmund Stoiber, the Christian Democrat candidate, holding a similar but ultimately less inflexible position, and Fischer claiming 80 percent backing within German public opinion, the issue appears to be driven by domestic political calculation. As such, it raises questions about Germany's capacity and stated ambitions to become a leading international player while remaining a committed ally of the United States. Fischer rejected this analysis in an interview this week, saying he saw no real damage to Germany's international position or relations with the Americans. Rather than an election tactic, he said, the German position reflected the intimate convictions he and Schroeder hold about the great dangers of an invasion of Iraq. At the same time though, during a bus tour of Bavaria, he appeared visibly uncomfortable with the phrase - "the German way" - that Schroeder employed in his explanation of why Germany was taking a position likely to unsettle, confound or vex its friends. That phrase carries a historical echo of Kaiser Wilhelm and the German Empire. "Yes," Fischer replied when he was asked if "the German way" undercut the idea of common European policy and decision-making. "It's not my language, my terminology. It won't be used any more." Apart from the potentially altered view of Germany's allies on the country's reliability, Fischer indirectly acknowledged that the Iraq question was now at the heart of the election, and that this was not to his displeasure. He said the Iraq "confidence question" would be a dominant element in the final two weeks of the campaign, with Germans asking themselves "in whose hands do they trust putting the country." German political analysts speculate that Schroeder and Fischer, who increasingly refer to their partnership as a kind of left-wing ticket, made their decision to opt out on Iraq early in August, before devastating floods in Eastern Germany, and at a time when the Social Democrats and Greens showed polling scores considerably behind Stoiber's CDU. The choice, it is said, was to plunge deeply into a last remaining reservoir of left-wing votes and anti-American sentiment, those of the PDS, or former East German Communist Party, whose charismatic chancellor candidate, Gregor Gysi, had quit the race. Taking a maximalist position rejecting all involvement in an Iraq war was expected to stir the activists in both the coalition parties, where, according to an SPD cadre, mobilization was incomplete and enthusiasm limited. In terms of the vote in Germany, where Fisch-er says that 80 percent of the population is now culturally allergic to war, the calculation may have been correct because the gap in the polls has been closed. Stoiber has essentially repackaged as his own the coalition's rejection of direct military support for an American invasion, while leaving the circumstances vague in the event of a green light from the United Nations and the EU. He also says, unlike Schroeder, that he cannot imagine President George W. Bush getting involved in a military adventure. It was, in effect, a new world for Germany's relationship with its old protector and advocate. This time, distancing itself from the United States had none of the circumscribed aspects of Cold War-era Germany's grievances with America when the issues were the supply of a gas pipeline to the Soviet Union, participation in the Moscow Olympics after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, or even the deployment of American cruise and Pershing missiles in Germany. Clearly, for Europe and the United States, the stakes go far beyond the political use of German external relations as an election gambit. Rather, they involve how Schroeder and Fischer, who postulated a new leadership role in Europe for their country during their four years in office, took a position on an issue that removes Germany from the largely skeptical but nonetheless wait-and-see zone on Iraq where most of its European allies have encamped. The Schroeder-Fischer stance also raises the question of why these two politicians decided, after a half-century of German dependence on the United States to hold off the Soviet Union, to steer clear of a potential conflict in which American lives may be lost fighting a dictator both German leaders have denounced. More than six months ago, according to a German newspaper account that has gone unchallenged, Schroeder himself said that failure to commit a German anti-nuclear and chemical warfare unit stationed in Kuwait to even a unilateral American strike against Iraq might open a German-American crisis with consequences that could last from 30 to 50 years. Exactly that choice not to help the Americans has now been made. The United States has clearly expressed its concern and the American ambassador to Germany, Dan Coats, was invited to the Foreign Ministry in Berlin on Wednesday after he criticized the government's position in an interview with the German News Agency. At the very least, the circumstances were unaccustomed. http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/181_60501,00050003.htm * IRAQ WAR NOT IMMINENT, SAYS NATO GENERAL Hindustani Times, from Agence France-Presse, 7th September Berlin: The chairman of NATO's military committee, General Harald Kujat, has said he does not believe that war against Iraq is imminent. "I do not personally have the impression that such a war is imminent", Kujat said, in remarks to be published on Sunday by the weekly Welt am Sonntag. Kujat, former inspector-general of the German army, also added he was convinced Washington would consult its allies before undertaking any military action. He also said the issue of a war against Iraq was not on the NATO agenda. In remarks largely reflecting those of NATO Secretary-General George Robertson earlier in the week, Kujat described talk of coming air raids on Iraq as "speculation" and said the issue of an attack on Baghdad had not even been raised at NATO's Permanent Council in Brussels. Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder of Germany has repeatedly stated he did not want to receive a last-minute telephone call just before the commencement of hostilities. The German leader has drawn fire from Washington for standing opposed to any intervention in Iraq and for saying that if it did happen, it would be without German help. On Friday night, however, German Defence Minister Peter Struck hinted at a possible change in Berlin's view, saying a new situation would be created if proof was produced implicating Baghdad in terrorism. http://www.ctnow.com/news/nationworld/hc gedmin0908.artsep08.story?coll=hc%2Dheadlines%2Dnationworld * 9.11 - LOOKING AT US by Jeffrey Gedmin Hartford Courant, 8th September 8, 2002 In the midst of a German election campaign, heartburn over American attitudes toward the International Criminal Court and devastating floods across the country, the Bush administration tasked its ambassador in Berlin, Daniel Coats, to officially register Washington's disapproval with critical comments made by Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder on U.S. intentions to remove Saddam Hussein from power. It was the wrong gesture, at exactly the wrong time. It was ironic, too. First, because the president needs to put his own house in order when it comes to the hardline on Baghdad these days. Dissent about the president's intentions are voiced these days, after all, by some Republicans as well, including former National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft, House Majority Leader Dick Armey, and even inside the administration, from Secretary of State Colin Powell. Ending the Iraqi threat is the right thing to do. But America will not achieve this alone either, and building the right support at home and abroad is critical. The administration's heavy hand is also ironic for other reasons. Before George W. Bush's election, top Republican strategists talked of the need for a charm offensive with the European allies once Mr. Bush was in the White House. Bush himself was bothered, apparently, by the Clinton administration's arrogant boasts about America being the "indispensable nation." This led to Bush actually calling in one campaign speech for a more "humble" U.S. foreign policy. Then came, of course, the Kyoto debacle for the new president, after which senior advisers would concede that the way they handled the global warming protocol was a "fiasco." You would think they would learn - and at times they did. The kinder, gentler George W. emerged in a Reichstag speech in Gemany's capitol earlier this summer. The president sacrificed not a single principle, nor one important issue. But his soft touch and deferential tone disarmed critics and left many an anti-American voice speechless, literally. As Europe's solidarity began to disintegrate earlier this year, one senior official told me the administration understood it had an image problem with the allies. In truth, poor Bush had the handicap of strong anti-Republican prejudices from the beginning of his term. Strange though this should be. Why? The sermonizing and unpredictable Democrat, Jimmy Carter, was a disaster with the allies. Bill Clinton? He dragged his feet on Bosnia and fecklessly ruled out ground troops in Kosovo. He permitted NATO chief Wes Clark to bully the allies in the Balkans; he bragged insufferably at G-8 summits about the glories of the American economy (Remember how he tried forcing EU leaders into cowboy clothes in Denver?). He hurled missiles at an aspirin factory in Sudan. He let U.S. Treasury Secretary Larry Summers deny Germany's first candidate, Caio Koch-Weser, the IMF's top job. Meanwhile, the Republicans helped bring the Cold War to a successful conclusion under President Reagan, and then, under the first President Bush, helped unify Germany, and win - quickly at that - a dangerous and complicated Gulf War. Still, no one would deny that Al Gore was by far the preferred candidate among German and European elites. Today, you actually get the feeling that some Europeans are more afraid of the Bush administration's response than they are of the terrorists and rogue dictators themselves. In truth, the current Bush administration has responded to the attacks of September 11 with remarkable discipline and restraint. There was consultation, coordination and patience on Afghanistan. And Afghanistan has been a success. There was no cowboy shoot-em-up in Iraq. On the contrary, Iraq is being debated carefully in Washington. Which makes Europe's own heavy breathing about "reckless" and "imperialist" American behavior seem a bit strange. Yes, we Americans forget how big we are, and how much discomfort even our closest partners have at times with our size and influence. When will we learn that it is not always what we do in the world, but how we do it that can offend so egregiously? If the United States wants allies, moreover, it must be far more attentive to how we fuse American interests to those of our friends. As for the Europeans, when will they finally admit that the natural and healthy spirit of competition with America is also mixing dangerously with good old-fashioned anti-Americanism and growing Euro-Gaullist tendencies? Perhaps both sides need also to swallow hard and face another fact: In some important ways our interests may simply be diverging. Former German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt argued recently that the "most pressing challenges for the Europeans are on the continent - not in world politics." Fair enough. For the United States, just the opposite is the case. This would mean that for some issues, even the right touch and calm conversation will not make important differences go away. Jeffrey Gedmin is director of the Aspen Institute Berlin, a nonprofit think tank with the goal of encouraging U.S.-German ties. He is also editor of the 1997 book "European Integration and American Interests: What the New Europe Really Means for the United States." His articles have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Financial Times and The Wall Street Journal. http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2002-09/08/content_553983.htm * FINLAND OPPOSES WAR ON IRAQ HELSINKI, Sept. 8 (Xinhuanet) -- Finnish Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja Sunday said that the confrontation between the United States and Iraq should not be taken as the reason to stage a war against Iraq. The minister made the remarks in an article published on the local newspaper Kaleva. He said that the United States should present sufficient evidence to show there is relationship between Iraq and terrorism as it thinks so. The Finnish minister also said that it's up to the United Nations to settle the issue of destroying weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, which might be owned by the country ruled by Saddam Hussein. http://www.lasvegassun.com/sunbin/stories/w-eur/2002/sep/08/090805201.html * SCHROEDER, STOIBER DEBATE IRAQ ON TV by TONY CZUCZKA Las Vegas Sun, 8th September BERLIN (ASSOCIATED PRESS): Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder defended his opposition to a U.S.-led war on Iraq on Sunday in a televised debate with his conservative challenger, saying he rules out any German role "with no ifs and buts." Challenger Edmund Stoiber in turn accused Schroeder of endangering friendly ties with the United States with his opposition to U.S. plans. With polls showing a neck-and-neck race two weeks before German elections and millions watching in their living rooms, Schroeder came across as nicer, more fair, competent and believable, according to a flash poll of viewers for ARD public television after the two men's second debate. Schroeder was the preferred candidate for 51 percent after the debate, surging from 44 percent before, while Stoiber stayed at about 30 percent. The poll did not offer a margin for error. Schroeder strongly defended his public defiance of the Bush administration over Iraq, saying he rules out a German role in any U.S.-led war on Iraq "with no ifs or buts" even if the military action were backed by the U.N. Security Council. He said it was a "question of war and peace" that Germany had to decide on its own. "I have neither sought a test of strength, nor is this about any kind of isolation," Schroeder said, acknowledging that he disagreed with President Bush but insisting that this was not a threat to decades of U.S-German friendship. Stoiber, the Bavarian governor leading the opposition Christian Democrats into the Sept. 22 election, said he wants to leave open the option of using military force to keep up pressure on Saddam Hussein to admit U.N. weapons inspectors. "In my opinion, you are damaging German-American relations," he said. Stoiber was left struggling for answer when Schroeder challenged him: "Would there be participation against Iraq under your leadership - yes or no?" Growing U.S. and British pressure to act against Saddam has injected a rare foreign-policy theme into the German campaign. Schroeder's foreign policy arguments found favor with 57 percent of viewers, compared to 28 percent backing Stoiber's foreign policy. [.....] http://www.cnn.com/2002/WORLD/europe/09/09/iraq.vatican.reut/index.html * Vatican speaks out on Iraq crisis CNN, 9th September VATICAN CITY (Reuters) -- The Vatican, breaking its silence on the international crisis over Iraq, said on Monday that any attack against the country must first have the approval of the United Nations. The Vatican's position on the crisis was made clear in an interview by its foreign minister, Archbishop Jean-Louis Tauran, to appear in Tuesday's edition of Catholic newspaper Avvenire. "If the international community... judges it to be opportune to resort to a proportionate use of force, it must be part of a decision taken within the framework of the United Nations...," Tauran told the paper. A transcript of the answers to the questions regarding Iraq and the anniversary of the September 11 attacks on the United States was made available to Reuters ahead of publication. Tauran said any eventual decision by the international community to attack Iraq "must be inspired by international law and, in particular, resolutions of the Security Council of the United Nations." Unless those steps were taken, Tauran said, it would be a case of "imposing the law of the strongest." He said Iraq should not be isolated and that any decision to strike should take into consideration the consequences for Iraqi civilians and repercussions on regional and world stability. 'Cannot fight evil with evil' "Obviously you cannot fight one evil with another, heaping evil upon evil," he said. He said dialogue should be given a privileged position in order to better call to order a country that had "broken rules of international law." U.S. President George W. Bush is seeking international backing for possible military action against Iraq, which Washington suspects of stockpiling weapons of mass destruction. Bush has indicated that the U.S. could act alone or with a few allies in the absence of an international consensus. Significantly, one of the lowest points in Vatican-U.S. relations came in 1991 during the Gulf War which ended Iraq's occupation of Kuwait. At the time of the Gulf War, relations were strained because Pope John Paul II refused to state that the conflict was a "just" one. The church teaches that "just war" means the use of military force that meets rigorous conditions of moral legitimacy. It says damage inflicted by an aggressor must be "lasting, grave and certain" in order to justify a military response. It also says that all other means must be exhausted and found ineffective first, and that the type of force used must be proportionate to the wrong it is seeking to rectify. At the time, the Vatican said the force used against Iraq after its invasion of Kuwait was disproportionate and therefore the war was not just. In a hint that the Vatican could take the same position in the event of a new conflict, Tauran told Avvenire: "One could legitimately ask if the type of operation (against Iraq) being considered is an adequate means to work towards a true peace." http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,789114,00.html * CHIRAC BACKS INSPECTION DEADLINE by Julian Borger in Washington The Guardian, 10th September The French president, Jacques Chirac, yesterday suggested Saddam Hussein should be given a three-week deadline for allowing weapons inspectors back into Iraq and said France might back a subsequent UN resolution authorising military action if the offer was refused. But Mr Chirac opposed the use of force without UN authority and drew a distinction between his position and Tony Blair's enthusiastic support for Washington. He said the prime minister and George Bush were isolated in their readiness to contemplate a pre emptive strike, adding that France was America's friend, "not necessarily one of its sycophants". Despite their critical tone, US officials welcomed the substance of Mr Chirac's remarks, in an extensive interview with the New York Times. He said he had discussed the framing of UN resolutions on Iraq with Mr Blair before the prime minister flew to Camp David on Saturday. He said he was in favour of a resolution that would "impose the return of inspectors in Iraq without restrictions or preconditions". "If Iraq accepts, great. If Iraq refuses - and to put it frankly, not much has been done to make it accept - if it refuses, then it's up to the [UN] security council to deliberate and decide what must be done and notably whether a military operation should be undertaken or not," Mr Chirac said. He said France would help formulate a second resolution and French support would depend on its wording. Ari Fleischer, the White House spokesman, portrayed the French proposal as a victory for Mr Bush's diplomacy in the last few days, during which he has spoken to all five permanent members of the security council in the run-up to his address to the general assembly on Thursday. "One thing that's clear as a result of the president's consulting and of the president's reminding the world of Iraq's flagrant violations of United Nations security council resolutions, it does appear that the movement is budding to put some force into previous UN resolutions," Mr Fleischer said. In his speech, Mr Bush is expected to lay out the case against President Saddam and demand determined UN action to enforce its resolutions on Iraqi disarmament. It is thought that Washington will leave it to Britain to draft a resolution laying down an ultimatum for the return of weapons inspectors. Mr Chirac said he, too, would like to see the back of President Saddam, but argued that unilateral action would open the door to chaos. "If we go down that road, where are we going? Let me tell you something. I am worried. I've told it several times to President Bush. "I am worried, and all the Europeans are worried about the rise of anti-western sentiments around the world, in the poor countries, and in the emerging countries." "A few principles and a little order are needed to run the affairs of the world." Mr Chirac expected US experts to visit Paris and other capitals to present evidence of Iraqi biological, chemical and nuclear weapons programmes in the near future. Unlike Gerhard Schröder, the German chancellor, Mr Chirac would not rule out support for military action, but he made clear the French position was far more sceptical than Britain's fulsome support. "It's not Schröder and I on one side and Bush and Blair on the other. It's Bush and Blair on one side and the others on the other side," Mr Chirac said, adding an aside likely to cause winces in Whitehall: "In life, you know, one must not confuse friends with sycophants. It's better to have only a few friends than to have a lot of sycophants. "And I'm telling you that France considers itself one of the friends of the Americans, not necessarily one of its sycophants. And when we have something to say, we say it." The White House kept up its effort to rally international opinion yesterday. Mr Bush put his case to the Canadian prime minister, Jean Chrétien, at a bilateral meeting in Detroit. He also called the UN secretary general, Kofi Annan, the Danish prime minister, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who holds the rotating EU presidency, and the Turkish president, Ahmet Necdet Sezer. http://abcnews.go.com/wire/World/reuters20020911_610.html * BULGARIA, PORTUGAL BACK BUSH ON IRAQ AT U.N. by Irwin Arieff ABC News, 11th September UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - On the eve of President Bush's much-anticipated U.N. speech on Iraq, the United States on Wednesday picked up the support of European nations Portugal and Bulgaria for a hard line toward Baghdad. "I do believe that we can reach, if not a consensus, at least a big majority in the U.N. Security Council on a resolution on Iraq" if the United States should ask for one, said Bulgarian Foreign Minister Solomon Passy. Bulgaria holds the rotating council presidency for September. "I think the United States has already been quite convincing, and they were convincing for many of their European allies," Passy said when asked what it would take for Bush to convince Bulgaria to back him on Iraq. Portuguese Foreign Minister Antonio Martins da Cruz said, "We believe it is a mistake some allies are doing -- blaming the United States. We need to blame Iraq. Iraq is not respecting U.N. resolutions." [.....] http://www.arabicnews.com/ansub/Daily/Day/020911/2002091101.html * CHIRAC DISCUSS WITH SAUDI FOREIGN MINISTER THE IRAQI SITUATION Arabic News, 11th September In conclusion of his meeting with the French President Jacques Chirac, the Saudi foreign minister prince Saud al-Faisal announced that fearing any military "action against Iraq stems from the fear that such an action will affect Iraq's national sovereignty and territorial integrity," stressing that view points with Paris are similar though not almost identical, and that any action to be decided against Iraq should go through the UN, considering that this very stand is not in contradiction with the US policy. Al-Faisal had arrived in France amid joint concern between the two countries that preparations to striking Iraq are serious and nearby. This was days following similar talks Chirac had held with the Syrian Vice President Abdul Halim Khaddam with the aim of coordinating stances with several Arab states in order to convince Iraq to allow the return of the UN inspectors, on the one hand and on the other hand to create a pressure climate on the American public opinion to control George Bush administration to that effect. The spokeswoman for the Elysee palace Catherene Colona said that Chirac during the talks expressed his "concern" over the Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon's rejection of the European proposals and his recent announcement of "the death of Oslo agreement," noting Chirac's comments that there is now a drastic need more than any other time before to resume the peace process because it is the sole way to ensure peace and security for the peoples of the ME region. The French spokeswoman quoted that the talks centered on the situation in the Middle East and the Saudi peace efforts, especially the initiative made by the Saudi crown prince Abdullah, approved at the Beirut's Arab summit. She added that "Chirac did not hide his concern over the deteriorated conditions at the general level or at the humanitarian level, alike." http://www.iht.com/articles/70305.html * GERMANY REBUKES GENERAL FOR NOT RULING OUT IRAQ ATTACK International Herald Tribune, from The Associated Press, 11th September BERLIN: The German defense minister criticized a high German general who serves in NATO on Tuesday for urging the alliance to keep its options open on Iraq - comments that appeared to clash with the government's flat rejection of military action against Saddam Hussein. The officer, General Harald Kujat of the air force, made his remarks during a discussion on how to ensure the resumption of weapons inspections in Iraq. He is the former German chief of-staff and now heads NATO's committee of military chiefs. "Whoever wants to reach a successful outcome, must not rule out military force as a last resort," Kujat said. The defense minister, Peter Struck, said he was irritated and surprised at the comments, given that Kujat also said after a meeting of the NATO panel in Berlin on Monday that U.S. military action against Iraq was not currently on the agenda for the alliance. "I would have advised restraint," Struck said, urging Kujat to consult more with Berlin because he remains a German soldier. Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder argues that attacking Iraq to oust Saddam could destabilize the Middle East and wreck the international anti-terrorism coalition, and says that Germany would not contribute troops. "There are a great many possibilities" to use economic and political pressure to achieve the return of UN inspectors, Schroeder told the Berliner Zeitung newspaper in an interview to appear Wednesday. Kujat, who took charge of the NATO panel in July, rejected Struck's criticism. "If I had wanted to criticize the position of the German government, I would have said it clearly," he said. The committee is NATO's highest military authority, grouping chiefs of staff from member countries. It advises NATO's political authority, the North Atlantic Council, and oversees the work of the alliance's two strategic commanders covering Europe and the North Atlantic. http://www.swissinfo.org/sen/Swissinfo.html?siteSect=143&sid=1330851 * SPAIN PLEDGES SUPPORT FOR U.S. ON IRAQ Swissinfo.org, 12th September MADRID (Reuters) - Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar has pledged support for U.S. President George W. Bush in his campaign against Iraq, stopping just short of endorsing a unilateral U.S. military strike. "We are on the side of those who want to prevent threats to the world," Aznar told parliament on Wednesday, a day after Bush consulted with the Spanish leader about Iraq. The centre-right Aznar has been one of Europe's most ardent supporters of the United States along with Tony Blair and immediately offered use of Spanish air bases for retaliatory strikes after the September 11 attacks a year ago. Spanish air bases also were used in the 1991 Gulf war against Iraq. Aznar compares the September 11 attacks to the bloody campaign of violence by the armed Basque separatist group ETA, which has been killing civilians in Spain for more than three decades to press its demands for Basque independence. In parliament on Wednesday, Socialist opposition leader Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero demanded that Aznar explain his position on Iraq after Spanish newspapers reported that Aznar told Bush Spain would support a U.S.-led attack if Saddam Hussein refused to allow arms inspections. The Socialists, Zapatero said, refused to back any attack on Iraq not sanctioned by the United Nations Security Council. "I want to exhaust all of the channels of persuasion in relation to the crisis with Iraq," Aznar responded, adding that, "I hope for a U.N. resolution." But he also made clear he would support Bush even if the Security Council did not. "It is incredible that the Iraqi regime for some time has been trying by all means to acquire weapons of mass destruction and give cover to terrorism," Aznar said. "We will always be on the side of those who like us and with us fight for the cause of freedom and against terrorism," he said. Aznar had told Bush a U.N. resolution supporting military action against Iraq was preferable but not necessary, newspapers said, citing sources close to Aznar. A spokesman for Aznar said on Wednesday the prime minister offered Bush Spain's "support in the fight against international terrorism" but said "military intervention was never discussed in concrete terms" in the phone call. UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A7489-2002Sep12.html * ANNAN URGES U.S. NOT TO ACT ALONE AGAINST IRAQ by Edith M. Lederer Washington Post, 12th September UNITED NATIONS (AP): U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, addressing the world's leaders Thursday, called for urgent action to address ongoing conflicts in the Middle East and South Asia and urged the United States not to act alone against Iraq. In his speech at the annual General Assembly debate, the secretary-general put Iraq second on a list of four current threats to world peace "where true leadership and effective action are badly needed." First on the list is the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and after Iraq comes Afghanistan and the India-Pakistan conflict over Kashmir. Before Annan spoke, he met briefly with President Bush, who was expected to present his case against Iraq in a speech later in the morning. U.S. officials said he would demand Iraq let in weapons inspectors and urge world leaders to insist on Saddam Hussein's compliance. Advocating the importance of international cooperation for "even the most powerful countries," Annan told the General Assembly that any state that is attacked retains the right to self-defense under the U.N. Charter. He opposed any pre-emptive action without Security Council backing, echoing concerns expressed by many countries, including close U.S. allies. But the secretary-general also accused Iraq of continuing to defy mandatory council resolutions adopted under Chapter VII of the U.N. Charter, which allows the use of military force and he indicated that time was running short for Iraq to admit weapons inspectors and dismantle any chemical, biological or nuclear weapons. Sanctions imposed on Iraq after its 1990 invasion of Kuwait cannot be lifted until U.N. inspectors certify that its weapons of mass destruction have been destroyed. But inspectors left ahead of U.S. and British airstrikes in December 1998, and Iraq has banned them from returning. "If Iraq's defiance continues, the Security Council must face its responsibilities," Annan said. Western diplomats said it was significant that Annan was not only telling the United States to go through the Security Council, but telling its 15 members who are often divided on Iraq that if Iraq refuses to allow inspectors back, they cannot stand by and do nothing. [.....] http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/134534169_webiraqreaction1 2.html * IRAQ'S U.N. AMBASSADOR BLASTS BUSH'S SPEECH, SAYS IT LACKS CREDIBILITY by Dafna Linzer Seattle Times, from The Associated Press, 12th September [.....] The speech was delivered during the early evening Baghdad time, but offerings on the four Iraqi televisions stations included only a Syrian movie, a Mexican soap opera, sports and Kurdish programming. State radio stations kept to their regular programming. Ordinary Iraqis following the action at the United Nations and waiting to see whether the outcome will lead to war could hear the speech on short wave radio. Satellite dishes are banned in Iraq, so the pan-Arab station al-Jazeera's live broadcast of the speech was unavailable. [.....] http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,1-412666,00.html * Bush speech on Iraq to the UN The Times, 12th September "Mr Secretary-General, Mr President, distinguished ladies and gentlemen: We meet one year and one day after a terrorist attack brought grief to my country, and to the citizens of many countries. Yesterday, we remembered the innocent lives taken that terrible morning. Today, we turn to the urgent duty of protecting other lives, without illusion and without fear. "We have accomplished much in the last year - in Afghanistan and beyond. We have much yet to do - in Afghanistan and beyond. Many nations represent here have joined in the fight against global terror - and the people of the United States are grateful. "The United Nations was born in the hope that survived a world war - the hope of a world moving toward justice, escaping old patterns of conflict and fear. The founding members resolved that the peace of the world must never again be destroyed by the will and wickedness of any man. "We created a United Nations Security Council, so that - unlike the League of Nations - our deliberations would be more than talk, and our resolutions would be more than wishes. After generations of deceitful dictators, broken treaties and squandered lives, we dedicate ourselves to standards of human dignity shared by all, and to a system of security defended by all. Today, these standards, and this security, are challenged. "Our commitment to human dignity is challenged by persistent poverty and raging disease. The suffering is great, and our responsibilities are clear. The United States is joining with the world to supply aid where it reaches people and lift up lives ... to extend trade and the prosperity it brings ... and to bring medical care where it is desperately needed. "As a symbol of our commitment to human dignity, the United States will return to Unesco. This organisation has been reformed and America will participate fully in its mission to advance human rights, tolerance, and learning. "Our common security is challenged by regional conflicts - ethnic and religious strife that is ancient but not inevitable. In the Middle East, there can be no peace for either side without freedom for both sides. "America stands committed to an independent and democratic Palestine, living beside Israel in peace and security. Like all other people, Palestinians deserve a government that serves their interests and listens to their voices. My nation will continue to encourage all parties to step up to their responsibilities as we seek a just and comprehensive settlement to the conflict. "Above all, our principles and our security are challenged today by outlaw groups and regimes that accept no law of morality and have no limit to their violent ambitions. In the attacks on America a year ago, we saw the destructive intentions of our enemies. This threat hides within many nations, including my own. In cells and camps, terrorists are plotting further destruction and building new bases for their war against civilization. And our greatest fear is that terrorists will find a shortcut to their mad ambitions when an outlaw regime supplies them with the technologies to kill on a massive scale. "In one place - in one regime - we find all these dangers, in their most lethal and aggressive forms ... exactly the kind of aggressive threat the United Nations was born to confront. "Twelve years ago, Iraq invaded Kuwait without provocation. And the regime's forces were poised to continue their march to seize other countries and their resources. Had Saddam Hussein been appeased instead of stopped, he would have endangered the peace and stability of the world. Yet this aggression was stopped - by the might of coalition forces, and the will of the United Nations. "To suspend hostilities and to spare himself, Iraq's dictator accepted a series of commitments. The terms were clear: to him, and to all. And he agreed to prove he is complying with every one of those obligations. He has proven instead only his contempt for the United Nations, and for all his pledges. By breaking every pledge - be his deceptions, and by his cruelties - Saddam Hussein has made the case again himself. "In 1991, Security Council Resolution 688 demanded that the Iraqi regime cease at once the repression of its own people, including the systematic repression of minorities - which, the Council said, "threaten(ed) international peace and security in the region." "This demand goes ignored. Last year, the UN Commission on Human rights found that Iraq continues to commit "extremely grave violations" of human rights and that the regime's repression is "all pervasive." "Tens of thousands of political opponents and ordinary citizens have been subjected to arbitrary arrest and imprisonment, summary execution, and torture by beating, burning, electric shock, starvation, mutilation, and rape. Wives are tortured in front of their husbands; children in the presence of their parents - all of these horrors concealed from the world by the apparatus of a totalitarian state. "In 1991, the UN Security Council, through Resolutions 686 and 687, demanded that Iraq return all prisoners from Kuwait and other lands. Iraq's regime agreed. It broke its promise. Last year theSecretary-General's high-level coordinator of this issue reported that Kuwaiti, Saudi, Indian, Syrian, Lebanese, Iranian, Egyptian, Bahraini, and Omani nationals remain unaccounted for - more than 600 people. One American pilot is among them. "In 1991, the UN Security Council, through Resolution 687, demanded the Iraq renounce all involvement with terrorism, and permit no terrorist organisations to operate in Iraq. Iraq's regime agreed. It broke its promise. "In violation of Security Council Resolution 1373, Iraq continues to shelter and support terrorist organisation that direct violence against Iran, Israel, and Western governments. Iraqi dissidents abroad are targeted for murder. In 1993, Iraq attempted to assassinate the Emir of Kuwait and a former American President. Iraq's government openly praised the attacks of September 11. And al-Qaeda terrorists escaped from Afghanistan are known to be in Iraq. "In 1991, the Iraqi regime agreed to destroy and stop developing all weapons of mass destruction and long-range missiles, and to prove to the world it has done so by complying with rigorous inspections. Iraq has broken every aspect of this fundamental pledge. "From 1991 to 1995, the Iraqi regime said it had no biological weapons. After a senior official in its weapons program defected and exposed this lie, the regime admitted to producing tens of thousands of litres of anthrax and other deadly biological agents for use with Scud warheads, aerial bombs, and aircraft spray tanks. "UN inspectors believe Iraq has produced two to four times the amount of biological agents it declared, and has failed to account for more than three metric tons of material that could be used to produce biological weapons. Right now, Iraq is expanding and improving facilities that were used for the production of biological weapons. "United Nations inspections also reveal that Iraq likely maintains stockpiles of VX, mustard, and other chemical agents, and that the regime is rebuilding and expanding facilities capable of producing chemical weapons. "And in 1995 - after four years of deception - Iraq finally admitted it had a crash nuclear weapons program prior to the Gulf War. We know, were it not for that war, the regime in Iraq would likely have possessed a nuclear weapon no later than 1993. "Today, Iraq continues to withhold important information about its nuclear program - weapons design, procurement logs, experiment data, an accounting of nuclear materials, and documentation of foreign assistance. Iraq employs capable nuclear scientists and technicians. "It retains physical infrastructure needed to build a nuclear weapon. Iraq has made several attempts to buy high-strength aluminium tubes used to enrich uranium for a nuclear weapon. Should Iraq acquire fissile material, it would be able to build a nuclear weapon within a year. And Iraq's state-controlled media has reported numerous meetings between Saddam Hussein and his nuclear scientists, leaving little doubt about his continued appetite for these weapons. "Iraq also possesses a force of Scud-type missiles with ranges beyond the 150 kilometres permitted by the UN. Work at testing and production facilities shows that Iraq is building more long-range missiles that could inflict mass death throughout the region. "In 1990, after Iraq's invasion of Kuwait, the world imposed economic sanctions on Iraq. Those sanctions were maintained after the war to compel the regime's compliance with Security Council resolutions. In time, Iraq was allowed to use oil revenues to buy food. "Saddam Hussein has subverted this program, working around the sanctions to buy missile technology and military materials. He blames the suffering of Iraq's people on the United Nations, even as he uses his oil wealth to build lavish palaces for himself, and arms his country. By refusing to comply with his own agreements, he bears full guilt for the hunger and misery of innocent Iraqi citizens. "In 1991, Iraq promised U.N. inspectors immediate and unrestricted access to verify Iraq's commitment to rid itself of weapons of mass destruction and long-range missiles. Iraq broke this promise, spending seven years deceiving, evading and harassing U.N. inspectors before ceasing cooperation entirely. "Just months after the 1991 ceasefire, the Security Council twice renewed its demand that the Iraqi regime cooperate fully with inspectors, "condemning" Iraq's "serious violations" of its obligations. The Security Council again renewed that demand in 1994 and twice more in 1996, "deploring" Iraq's "clear violations" of its obligations. The Security Council renewed its demand three more times in 1997, citing "flagrant violations" and three more times in 1998, calling Iraq's behavior "totally unacceptable." And in 1999, the demand was renewed yet again. "As we meet today, it has been almost four years since the last UN inspectors set foot in Iraq - four years for the Iraqi regime to plan and build and test behind a cloak of secrecy. "We know that Saddam Hussein pursued weapons of mass murder even when inspectors were in the country. Are we to assume that he stopped when they left? The history, the logic and the facts lead to one conclusion. "Saddam Hussein's regime is a grave and gathering danger. To suggest otherwise is to hope against the evidence. To assume this regime's good faith is to bet the lives of millions and the peace of the world in a reckless gamble. And this is a risk we must not take. "Delegates to the General Assembly: We have been more than patient. We have tried sanctions. We have tried the carrot of "oil for food" and the stick of coalition military strikes. But Saddam Hussein has defied all these efforts and continues to develop weapons of mass destruction. "The first time we may be completely certain he has nuclear weapons is when, God forbid, he uses one. We owe it to all our citizens to do everything in our power to prevent that day from coming. "The conduct of the Iraqi regime is a threat to the authority of the United Nations, and a threat to peace. Iraq has answered a decade of UN demands with a decade of defiance. All the world now faces a test and the United Nations a difficult and defining moment. Are Security Council resolutions to be honoured and enforced or cast aside without consequence? Will the United Nations serve the purpose of its founding or will it be irrelevant? "The United States helped found the United Nations. We want the UN to be effective and respected and successful. We want the resolutions of the world's most important multilateral body to be enforced. Right now these resolutions are being unilaterally subverted by the Iraqi regime. Our partnership of nations can meet the test before us, by making clear what we now expect of the Iraqi regime. "If the Iraqi regime wishes peace, it will immediately and unconditionally forswear, disclose and remove or destroy all weapons of mass destruction, long-range missiles and all related material. "If the Iraqi regime wishes peace, it will immediately end all support for terrorism and act to suppress it, as all states are required to do by UN Security Council resolutions. "If the Iraqi regime wishes peace, it will cease persecution of its civilian population, including Shi'a, Sunnis, Kurds, Turkomans and others - again as required by Security Council resolutions."If the Iraqi regime wishes peace, it will release or account for all Gulf War personnel whose fate is still unknown. It will return the remains of any who are deceased, return stolen property, accept liability for losses resulting from the invasion of Kuwait, and fully cooperate with international efforts to resolve these issues - as required by the Security Council resolutions."If the Iraqi regime wishes peace, it will immediately end all illicit trade outside the oil-for-food program. It will accept U.N. administration of funds from that program, to ensure that the money is used fairly and promptly for the benefit of the Iraqi people."If all these steps are taken, it will signal a new openness and accountability in Iraq. And it could open the prospect of the United Nations helping to build a government that represents all Iraqis - a government based on respect for human rights, economic liberty and internationally supervised elections."The United States has no quarrel with the Iraqi people, who have suffered for too long in silent captivity. Liberty for the Iraqi people is a great moral cause and a great strategic goal. The people of Iraq deserve it and the security of all nations requires it. Free societies do not intimidate through cruelty and conquest and open societies do not threaten the world with mass murder. The United States supports political and economic liberty in a unified Iraq."We can harbour no illusions. Saddam Hussein attacked Iran in 1980, and Kuwait in 1990. He has fired ballistic missiles at Iran, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Israel. His regime once ordered the killing of every person between the ages of 15 and 70 in certain Kurdish villages in Northern Iraq. He has gassed many Iranians and 40 Iraqi villages."My nation will work with the UN Security Council on a new resolution to meet our common challenge. If Iraq's regime defies us again, the world must move deliberately and decisively to hold Iraq to account. The purposes of the United States should not be doubted. The Security Council resolutions will be enforced - the just demands of peace and security will be met - or action will be unavoidable. And a regime that has lost its legitimacy will also lose its power."Events can turn in one of two ways."If we fail to act in the face of danger, the people of Iraq will continue to live in brutal submission. The regime will have now power to bully, dominate and conquer its neighbours, condemning the Middle East to more years of bloodshed and fear. The region will remain unstable, with little hope of freedom and isolated from the progress of our times. With every step the Iraqi regime takes toward gaining and deploying the most terrible weapons, our own options to confront that regime will narrow."And if an emboldened regime were to supply these weapons to terrorist allies, then the attacks of September 11th would be a prelude to far greater horrors."If we meet our responsibilities, if we overcome this danger, we can arrive at a very different future. The people of Iraq can shake off their captivity. They can one day join a democratic Afghanistan and a democratic Palestine, inspiring reforms throughout the Muslim world."These nations can show by their example that honest government, and respect for women, and the great Islamic tradition of learning can triumph in the Middle East and beyond. And we will show that the promise of the United Nations can be fulfilled in our time."Neither of these outcomes is certain. Both have been set before us. We must choose between a world of fear and a world of progress. We cannot stand by and do nothing while dangers gather. We must stand up for our security, and for the permanent rights and hopes of mankind. By heritage and by choice, the United States of America will make that stand. Delegates to the United Nations, you have the power to make that stand as well.Thank you." _______________________________________________ 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 email@example.com All postings are archived on CASI's website: http://www.casi.org.uk