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I took Zaid al-Ali's letter to Clive Solely MP, cut it down somewhat, and delivered it to my MP (Jim Marshall) last week. My version of it is below in case anyone wants to use it themselves. As for the 'no war no solution' argument, it seems odd to me. I think that we can all agree that a combination of US/UK sanctions and the government of the Ba'athists have caused massive harm to the Iraqi people since 1991. If we say that the only solution lies in war, we are saying that the US/UK sanctions policy is a given, and we can do nothing to change it. In my opinion, even at this stage, the lifting of non-military sanctions would have a positive effect on the Iraqi people and it would make them better placed to topple the regime. When I look at Afghanistan, and see the frighteningly short memory of the US/UK, I worry for the Iraqis. Milton Obote was *worse* than Idi Amin. Chris The Iraq Dossier in the light of the findings of UNMOVIC The most important fact that we have learned from the inspections is that all the allegations contained in the UK Government's "dossier" of evidence published in September last year are baseless. Here is a summary of the Government's allegations followed by an analysis of these allegations in light of what has been discovered since the publication of the "dossier" of evidence. The specific allegations of the UK government. On 24 September 2002, the British Government published a document entitled Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction, The Assessment of the British Government (hereafter the "Dossier"). The Dossier is full of conjecture and assumptions, but there are some, albeit few, specific allegations that are made. These are as follows: (1) Chemical Weapons: The Dossier states that "[i]ntelligence shows that Iraq has continued to produce chemical agent." This is supported by the assertion that "plants formerly associated with the chemical warfare programme have been rebuilt. These include the chlorine and phenol plant at Fallujah 2 near Habbaniyah [...] New chemical facilities have been built, some with illegal foreign assistance, and are probably fully operational or ready for production. These include the Ibn Sina Company at Tarmiyah [...] Of particular concern are elements of the phosgene production pant at al-Qa'qa'." (2) Biological Weapons: The Dossier mentions three facilities which are of concern to the Government. These are "the Castor Oil Production Plant at Fallujah [...] the al-Dawrah Foot and Mouth Disease Vaccine Institute [...] the Amariyah Sera and Vaccine Plant at Abu Ghraib" (3) Nuclear Weapons: The Dossier does not mention a single site in relation to the development of nuclear weapons. It merely states that "there has been accumulation of intelligence indicating that Iraq is making concerted covert efforts to acquire dual-use technology and materials with nuclear applications" and provides a list of civilian use items that the Government believes could also be used to develop nuclear weapons. Evidence concerning the specific allegations Much of the information relating to the activities of UNMOVIC has been published on the United Nations' website. From this, we learn that the inspectors have visited all the sites that the Government highlights in its Dossier, as well as many others. However, Hans Blix, director of UNMOVIC, and Mohamed ElBaradei, director of the IAEA, stated unequivocally on 9 January 2003 that their inspections had revealed no "smoking gun." Th following information regarding the facilities that concern the Government has been compiled from the daily declarations issued by the UN, as well as from other public sources. (1) The Fallujah 2 Facility near Habbaniyah: The weapons inspectors visited this site on the following days: 9 December, 17 December, 8 January, and 17 January. As can be seen from the UN's own declarations, the inspections sought to uncover any recent activity at the site relating to chemical, biological and nuclear weapons. Samples were taken and tested. However, nothing suspicious was found at the site. (2) The Ibn Sina Company at Tarmiyah: This site was visited by the weapons inspectors on the following dates: 11 December, 12 December, 4 January, 6 January, and 11 January. The inspectors concentrated on a number of different aspects of the site. Chemical, biological and nuclear inspectors were present at the various visits in order to ensure that no prohibited activity was taking place or had taken place in recent times. Samples were taken and studied. However, no suspicious activity was found. (3) The phosgene production pant at al-Qa'qa': The weapons inspectors visited various facilities at al-Qa'qa on the following days: 30 November, 9 December, 14 December, 16 December, 21 December, and 18 January. The inspectors carried out different types of tests during their visits, including procedures designed to detect any recent activity involving the development of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons. Samples were taken and studied. However, no suspicious activity was found. (4) The Castor Oil Production Plant at Fallujah: In July 2002, two months before the Dossier was published, this site was visited by a German television crew headed by Hans von Sponeck, one of the former UN directors of the Oil-for-Food Programme. At that time, before the Government was to say of the Fallujah facility that it is has "been rebuilt," Mr von Sponeck found that it was in the same state that he had last seen it in 1999, which is to say totally inoperable. (5) The al-Dawrah Foot and Mouth Disease Vaccine Institute was visited by the UN weapons inspectors on 28 November. The inspectors visited the site for the purpose of determining whether there had been recent activity relating to the development of biological weapons. The inspectors reported no anomalies during the course of their visit, nor afterwards in relation to this site. (6) The Amariyah Sera and Vaccine Plant at Abu Ghraib: This site was visited by the weapons inspectors on the following days: 15 December, 16 December, and 22 December. The inspectors conducted tests at the plant in order to determine whether any recent activities in relation to the development of biological weapons had taken place. Many facilities at the site were inspected, and samples were taken and tested. However, the inspectors have reported no anomalies in relation to this site. (7) In relation to Nuclear Weapons. The UK Government does not make any specific allegations in its Dossier in relation to nuclear activity within Iraq. Nevertheless, since the resumption of inspections, the IAEA has been conducting tests in relation to this type of activity on a daily basis. Thus far, the Agency has not found any evidence that would support the Government's allegation that Iraq has been active in its pursuit of nuclear weapons. A number of separate and independent authorities agree that it is impossible for Iraq to develop nuclear technology and successfully conceal it. This includes former weapons inspectors, Iraqi scientists previously involved in Iraq's nuclear weapons programme and now living in the West, and British academics involved in nuclear science. References  Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction, The Assessment of the British Government, at www.official-Documents.co.uk/document/reps/iraq/iraqdossier.pdf.  Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction, The Assessment of the British Government, p. 19.  Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction, The Assessment of the British Government, pp. 19-20.  Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction, The Assessment of the British Government, p. 22.  Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction, The Assessment of the British Government, p. 25.  Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction, The Assessment of the British Government, p. 26.  UNMOVIC Statement, 27 November 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=277&sID=8.  "Evidently if we had found any 'smoking gun' we would have reported it to the Council. Similarly, if we had met a denial of access or other impediment to our inspections we would have reported it to the Council. We have not submitted any such reports." 'Notes For Briefing The Security Council', Dr. Hans Blix, 9 January 2003, www.un.org/Depts/unmovic/bx9jan.htm; "[A]s [Mr Blix] went into a United Nations Security Council briefing, he indicated there was so far no evidence to provoke the 'serious consequences' threatened by the Security Council's November resolution. 'We have now been there for some two months and been covering the country in ever wider sweeps and we haven't found any smoking guns,' he said." 'No smoking guns in Iraq arms search,' BBC News, 9 January 2003, at http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/2641973.stm.  "An UNMOVIC team carried out an inspection at the Falluja II site of the Al-Tariq Company. This site is located in the Falluja district about 100 km west of Baghdad and is nearby to the Falluja III site, which was visited yesterday by the same inspection team. The Fallujah II site comprises the headquarters of the Al-Tariq Company and a factory area. Only the factory area was inspected. Two separate chemical plants are in the factory area and their major activity is the production of phenol and chlorine. The chlorine plant is currently inoperative. The site contains a number of tagged dual-use items of equipment, which were all accounted for. All key buildings were inspected in addition to the chlorine and phenol plants. The objectives of the visit were successfully achieved." UNMOVIC declaration, 9 December 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=284&sID=8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 17 December 2002 at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=298&sID=8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 8 January 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=324&sID=8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 17 January 2002 at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=338&sID=8  See footnote 8. "Another team went to the Ibn Sina Company some 40 km north of Baghdad. This site was formerly known as Tarmiya and was the site of a uranium enrichment plant that was destroyed in 1991. The team inspected the new activities at the site and verified that no nuclear activities remain or have been initiated. Dual-use industrial activities at the site were inspected to verify that they could not contribute directly to a nuclear programme. The Amil liquid nitrogen plant, subordinate to Ibn Sina and about 10 km away, was inspected during this activity." UNMOVIC Declaration, 11 December 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=286&sID=8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 12 December 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=287&sID=8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 4 January 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=320&sID=8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 6 January 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=322&sID=8.  "An UNMOVIC team of missile inspectors traveled 68 km north of Baghdad to inspect the Ibn Sina Centre. In this large centre, which is also known as Tarmiyah, the team inspected several buildings to verify the equipment and raw materials used in chemical processes liked to missile activities, such as the production of ammonium perchlorate for solid propellants and the regeneration of oxidizer and fuel used in liquid propulsion." UNMOVIC Declaration, 11 January 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=331&sID=8.  See footnote 8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 30 November 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=270&sID=8.  "An IAEA team at Al Qa Qaa began inventorying known explosive materials from the past nuclear programme that were previously under the control of the IAEA. Other tasks involved inspecting a number of key buildings and outdoor sites within the huge Al Qa Qaa complex." UNMOVIC Declaration, 9 December 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=284&sID=8.  "One UNMOVIC chemical team inspected two facilities within the Al Qa Qaa complex: a high concentrated (oleum) sulpheric acid plant and all storages in the main storage area. Equipment and chemicals present at both sites were verified. The Director General of the complex informed the team about the changes that had occurred since 1998. The inspection went smoothly." UNMOVIC Declaration, 14 December 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=292&sID=8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 16 December 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=295&sID=8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 21 December 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=304&sID=8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 18 January 2003, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=339&sID=8.  See footnote 8.  "Al-Fallujah was partially destroyed in 1991 during the Gulf war and again in December 1998, during operation desert fox. In between a UN disarmament team disabled all facilities in any way related to weapons of mass destruction there, including the castor oil production unit. My visit this month disclosed beyond any doubt that the castor oil unit was inoperable." Go on, call Bush's bluff, Hans von Sponeck, The Guardian, 22 July 2002, at www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,759446,00.html; "In mid-July, von Sponeck visited two sites cited in an Iraq dossier released by British Prime Minister Tony Blair earlier this week: a veterinary vaccine institute at al-Dawrah, and a castor oil production plant at Fallujah. Suspected of producing biological agents, they were targeted in 1998 US and British air attacks. Mr. Blair's dossier says that the castor oil plant 'has been rebuilt.' But von Sponeck says that, while Iraq may have been rebuilding other facilities he didn't visit, in these two cases, "these facilities are simply gone." 'Hardened US approach on Iraq: big stick, little carrot', Scott Peterson, Christian Science Monitor, 27 September 2002, at www.csmonitor.com/2002/0927/p07s01-wogn.html.  "The UNMOVIC team inspected the Foot and Mouth Disease Vaccine Plant in Al Dawrah, which is situated about 15 km south of Baghdad. The site was declared by Iraq as being used for production of biological weapons (BW) agent starting in 1990. Equipment declared to have been in the BW programme was destroyed under inspectors' supervision in 1996. However significant dual use production equipment remains. The UNMOVIC team comprised 14 weapons inspectors and support staff. The team was able to complete the inspections tasks that it had planned to carry out. A number of samples were taken. During the inspection, the team learned that some equipment had been transferred to another facility. This was immediately followed by activities at a small veterinary medicine facility about 20 km north of Baghdad. Both teams left the Canal Hotel at 8:30 a.m. and returned in the course of the afternoon. They had no difficulty gaining immediate access to the sites as well as any locations within the sites." UNMOVIC Declaration, 28 November 2002, at www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=268&sID=8.  See footnote 8.  "The UNMOVIC biological team inspected the Al Amiryah Serum and Vaccine Institute on the western outskirts of Baghdad. All buildings, including new constructions, were inspected." UNMOVIC Declaration, 15 December 2002, at http://www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=293&sID=8.  "The team then revisited the Al Amiryah Serum and Vaccine Institute in Baghdad to seek clarifications from the former Director of the Institute. The team took physical inventory of the Institute and took some samples." UNMOVIC Declaration, 16 December 2002, at http://www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=295&sID=8.  UNMOVIC Declaration, 22 December 2002, at http://www.un.org/apps/news/infocusnewsiraq.asp?NewsID=305&sID=8.  See footnote 8.  See footnote 8.  "When I left Iraq in 1998, when the UN inspection programme ended, the infrastructure and facilities had been 100% eliminated. There's no debate about that. All of their instruments and facilities had been destroyed. The weapons design facility had been destroyed. The production equipment had been hunted down and destroyed. And we had in place means to monitor - both from vehicles and from the air - the gamma rays that accompany attempts to enrich uranium or plutonium. We never found anything. We can say unequivocally that the industrial infrastructure needed by Iraq to produce nuclear weapons had been eliminated [...] Centrifuge facilities [necessary for the development of nuclear weapons] emit gamma radiation, as well as many other frequencies. It is detectable. Iraq could not get around this." 'Even if Iraq managed to hide these weapons, what they are now hiding is harmless goo,' Scott Ritter, The Guardian, 19 September 2002, at www.guardian.co.uk/g2/story/0,3604,794759,00.html.  "I worked with the Iraqi nuclear program from 1968 until my departure from Iraq in late 1998. Having been closely involved in most of the major nuclear activities of that program, from the Russian research reactor in the late sixties to the French research reactors in the late seventies, the Russian nuclear power program in the early eighties, the nuclear weapons program during the eighties and finally the confrontations with U.N. inspection teams in the nineties, it behooves me to admit that I find present allegations about Iraq's nuclear capability, as continuously advanced by the Americans and the British, to be ridiculous [...] Immediately after the cessation of hostilities [in 1991], the entire organization that was responsible for the nuclear weapons project turned its attention to the reconstruction of the heavily damaged oil refineries, electric power stations, and telephone exchange buildings. The combined expertise of the several thousand scientific, engineering, and technical cadres manifested itself in the restoration of the oil, electric and communication infrastructure in a matter of months -- an impressive accomplishment, by any measure. [...] In the following few years, the nuclear weapons project organization was slowly disbanded. By 1994, its various departments were either elevated to independent civilian industrial enterprises, or absorbed within the Military Industrial Authority under Hussain Kamil, who later escaped to Jordan in 1996 and then returned to Baghdad where he was murdered [...] In the meantime, and this is the gist of my discourse, the economic standing of the Iraqi nuclear scientists and engineers (along with the rest of the civil servants and the professional middle class) has been pathetically reduced to poverty level. [...] Needless to say, their spirits are very low and their cynicism is high. Relatively few have managed to leave Iraq. [...] Pathetic shadows of their former selves, the overwhelming fear that haunts them is the fear of retirement, with a whopping pension that equates to about $2 a month." 'Iraq's nuclear non-capability', Imad Khadduri, Yellow Times, 21 November 2002, at www.yellowtimes.org/article.php?sid=874.  "Charles Duelfer, Ritter's superior officer at Unscom, generally agrees with him. Testifying to the Senate Armed Services Committee on 27 February, Duelfer said that 'the IAEA accounted for most of the [nuclear] programme and key facilities were destroyed.' [...] The [International Institute for Strategic Studies] conclusion, unpopular in Washington, is that 'of the three WMD types, nuclear weapons seem the furthest from Iraq's grasp.' 'We have greater confidence,' the report continues, 'that Iraq's prewar nuclear infrastructure and material assets were effectively accounted for and disarmed by 1998, compared to its prewar CBW capability.' [...] The [Joint Intelligence Committee] and the [International Institute for Strategic Studies] agree that Iraq does not pose a nuclear threat at present. [...] The nuclear threat from Iraq is, in conclusion, significantly less now than it was in 1991 [...]." 'What has he got?' Norman Dombey, London Review of Books, 17 October 2002, at www.lrb.co.uk/v24/n20/domb01_.html. _______________________________________________ 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