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Re: [casi] RE: Iraq - Potential Consequences of War

On 8 Nov 2002 at 17:57, Colin Rowat wrote:

> I think that it has been recognised on the list that members of the
> Iraqi regime may act 'rationally' if faced with a certain US attack,
> and depose the existing leadership.  If this occurs - and I have no
> idea what likelihood to assign to this (but guess that vague US
> signals as to what it regards as acceptable in Iraq decrease it) -
> then the Rogers scenarios are avoided.

It seemed 'rational' to do what UNSCOM wanted. The reality was that the US had no
intention of lifting sanctions. Note also that this new resolution deliberately bears no
incentives and regional WMD disarmament has been dropped.

You can be sure that if Iraq accepts the resolution and works with the inspectors then
there will be more talk of tribunals to try SH and others.

> In 1991 it was recognised that targeting infrastructure put civilians
> at risk, but the US expectation seemed to be that Saddam would fall
> and a new government would allow a negotiated solution.  The
> infrastructural damage would give the US leverage over it.  Gordon and
> Trainor quote Lt. Col. David Deptula, one of the air war planners, as
> saying, "Hey, your lights will come back on as soon as you get rid of
> Saddam".  (Brig. Gen. Buster Glosson's explanation for targeting the
> infrastructure was that he wanted "to put every household in an
> autonomous mode and make them feel they were isolated. ... I wanted to
> play with their psyche."  For perhaps 111,000 Iraqis, his playing was
> fatal.)

I do not agree with the above analysis. It would have been easy to get a negotiated
settlement with the Iraqis. After all, SH asked the US for permission before invading
Kuwait. Bush and even more Thatcher did not want a settlement.

The aim was clearly to destroy Iraq - not to provoke a settlement nor to get SH out of
Kuwait. The damage was tantamount to a scorched earth policy (eg the excessive
damage to electricity generation and distribution). Our leaders have still not been held to
account for this.

It is only the vetoes of the US & UK that have prevented the lifting of sanctions and the
rebuilding of Iraq.

Mark Parkinson

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