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See below 2 new ARROW briefings by Mil I have cut out a potentially big piece of news from it, which Mil thinks could be "dytnamite" It regards the satelite pics of Al Taji......... richard byrne voices Studying the photos, the angle of the access road behind the bunker, and the presence of trees in the second photo indicate that the photos actually are of two quite different bunkers. It seems that the second photo has been chosen because it includes the inspectors' vehicles driving through the Taji facility-to dramatise their alleged inability to detect Iraqi deception. Game Over Bush & Powell Try To Shut Down The Inspectors ARROW Anti-War Briefing 29 (10 February 2003) WAR PLAN IRAQ Update Number 8 CO-OPERATION IS IRRELEVANT President Bush is determined to go to war, whatever Baghdad does: 'Saddam Hussein can now be expected to begin another round of empty concessions, transparently false denials. No doubt he will play a last minute game of deception. The game is over.' (Telegraph, 7 Feb., p. 1) 'It would not surprise the US if Saddam Hussein pretends all of a sudden to have a change of heart and allow the U2 to fly or to show up with some of the weapons he promised he never had,' a White House spokesperson said. 'But it wouldn't change the fact that Saddam Hussein is not co-operating.' (Times, 7 Feb., p. 1) However much Iraq actually co-operates with the weapons inspectors, 'Saddam is not co-operating'. In his barnstorming briefing to the UN Security Council on 5 Feb., Colin Powell said, 'The issue before us is not how much time we are willing to give the inspectors to be frustrated by Iraqi obstruction, but how much longer are we willing to put up with Iraq's non-compliance before we, as a council, we, as the United Nations, say, "Enough. Enough".' (Telegraph, 6 Feb., p. 1) The only possible fate for the inspectors is to be 'frustrated by obstruction'. The US Secretary of State was more direct earlier: 'The question isn't how much longer do you need for inspections to work. Inspections will not work.' (Independent, 23 Jan., p. 1) One aim of the Powell presentation to the Security Council was to undermine public and international confidence in the inspection agencies. THE TAJI FACILITY SHELL GAME The most striking images used in the 5 Feb. presentation were of the Taji weapons facility. One satellite photo from 10 Nov. 2002 shows two shapes by a bunker-one is alleged to be a decontamination vehicle, and the other a security building for monitoring leakages from the chemical weapons allegedly stored in the bunker. A second photo taken on 22 Dec., shows UN weapons inspectors' vehicles approaching the 'sanitized bunkers'-from which the vehicle and security building seem to have been removed. Jonathan Ban, a chemical weapons expert at the Washington-based Chemical and Biological Arms Control Institute, found the juxtaposition of the two images 'strange': 'It wasn't clear to me whether the bunkers that were shown in the second image were the same ones that were shown in the first. If that is what they are claiming, then I would have liked to see more detail of the decontamination truck and the security building being moved. And if they were different buildings, what happened to the active bunkers when the weapons inspectors showed up? This is something that needs to be explained better.' (Guardian, 6 Feb., p. 3) Studying the photos, the angle of the access road behind the bunker, and the presence of trees in the second photo indicate that the photos actually are of two quite different bunkers. It seems that the second photo has been chosen because it includes the inspectors' vehicles driving through the Taji facility-to dramatise their alleged inability to detect Iraqi deception. THE AL-MUSSAYYIB MISDIRECTION 'Mr Powell's case for Iraqi concealment also relied heavily on interpretation of a second set of satellite images, which captured the al-Mussayyib weapons facility', allegedly involved in shipping chemical weapons from production facilities out to the field. 'The first picture, from May last year, showed a bunker surrounded by what the US said were three 35-tonne cargo trucks, along with a decontamination vehicle-strong evidence according to Mr Powell that the site was being used for chemical or biological weapons activity. A second image, taken two months later, showed that the entire site [actually only part of the site-ARROW] had been bulldozed and the earth freshly graded to conceal banned weapons activity from UN inspection teams. The images were hugely important for the US case, because, said Mr Powell, an Iraqi human source had confirmed that the chemical weapons had been removed at that time.' On 13 Dec., inspectors went to al-Mussayyib and found only ready- to-use pesticides. Jonathan Ban again: 'I find it very difficult to believe that if there was chemical weapons contamination in the area that the Iraqis would be able to completely get rid of that contamination. The image shows that there are some areas of ground on the site that haven't been graded and I think the inspectors would be able to take samples from there to prove conclusively whether or not there has been recent chemical weapons activity.' (Guardian, 6 Feb., p. 3) Sounds like a job for those inspectors that Mr Powell says are pointless. US FLOUTS RESOLUTION 1441 UN Resolution 1441, which Colin Powell exhorts us all to re-read, 'Requests all Member States to give full support to UNMOVIC and the IAEA in the discharge of their mandates, including by providing any information related to prohibited programmes or other aspects of their mandates'. (Para. 10) The Resolution was passed on 8 Nov. 2002, but these dramatic photos from May, July, Nov. and Dec. 2002 were not handed over to UNMOVIC-they were kept to be publicly displayed on 5 Feb. 2003. THE MOBILE CONFIDENCE TRICK 'Because Powell's slideshow showed Iraq giving the UN inspectors the runaround, it also weakened Blix's argument that more time would bring success. Talking of the 18 lorries that are believed to be mobile biological weapons factories, Powell asked rhetorically how long it would take to find even a single one among the "thousands and thousands of trucks" on Iraq's roads... Blix's report to the UN last week put the US on the back foot, in arguing that the inspectors deserved more time. Powell's performance yesterday won back a lot of that ground.' (Times, 6 Feb., p. 15) In the real world, 'Biowar experts concede that no scheme is too crazy for Saddam. Still, they say, truck-mounted labs would be all but unworkable. The required ventilation systems would make them instantly recognizable from above, and they would need special facilities to safely dispose of their deadly wastes. A routine highway accident could be catastrophic. And US intelligence, after years of looking for them, has never found even one.' (Newsweek, 17 Feb., p. 20) I SAY, I SAY, HEARSAY Richard Beeston of The Times observed that, 'most of what General Powell said was open to interpretation. There was no named high-ranking defector prepared to substantiate the allegations. There was no visual evidence of soldiers or scientists handling weapons such as chemical or biological weapons, nor even attempting to conceal huge items such as Scud missiles.' His colleague Michael Evans noted that there were 'no pictures of the inside' of any of the alleged mobile biological weapons laboratories, nor 'photographic evidence' of a chemical weapons programme. (Times, 6 Feb., p. 14) Joseph Cirincione, senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington DC, said, 'We should never go to war based on a defector's tale. There's a long history of defectors' tales being erroneous... It is a problem that detectives have all the time; somebody comes to them hoping to get something in exchange.' (Guardian, 6 Feb., p. 2) 'He barraged the members [of the Security Council] with questions: "Who took the hard drives? Where did they go? What's being hidden? Why?" Yet he offered few answers and much speculation.' (Guardian, 6 Feb., p. 1) Egyptian political scientist Emad Shahin observed wryly, and accurately, 'The speech was long on accusations, and short on evidence.' (Telegraph, 7 Feb., p. 14) THE TAPES Many Western observers were convinced by intercepted conversations between Iraqi military officials. 'But doubts remain about the credibility of the tapes, not least because many observers doubt that senior Iraqi officers would speak so carelessly on open telephone or radio conversations. The conversations were also open to interpretation. Jonathan Ban, a chemical weapons specialist said. "For example, what do they mean by a 'modified vehicle'? That could mean absolutely anything as could 'prohibited ammo'." ' (Guardian, 6 Feb., p. 2) EVEN THE SPIES REVOLT Before his speech, it was reported that Powell 'yesterday appeared to pull back from claims that he would show the United Nations a link between al- Qaeda and Iraq, amid anger among Washington's spies over the way intelligence was being distorted to prove the link existed.' (Telegraph, 4 Feb., p. 13) There is evidence that the supposed 'link' man, Abu Musab Zarqawi, was treated in Baghdad, but there is no evidence he contacted Iraqi officials: 'The intelligence is practically non-existent', said one 'exasperated American intelligence source'. The source went on: 'It is impossible to support the bald conclusions being made by the White House and the Pentagon given the poor quantity and quality of the intelligence available. There is uproar within the intelligence community on all of these points, but the Bush White House has quashed dissent.' The Telegraph commented, 'This could all be dismissed as a turf war between rival intelligence agencies were it not for the near unanimity across the British and American intelligence communities, including the Defence Intelligence Agency analysts whose bosses produced the line the White House wanted to hear.' (Telegraph, 4 Feb. 2003, p. 13) Despite the uproar, Powell trotted out the Party line. 1998 ALL OVER AGAIN President Bush famously said, 'This looks like a re-run of a bad movie and I'm not interested in watching.' (Guardian, 22 Jan., p. 1) Let's remember that in Dec. 1998 the inspection agency UNSCOM was driven out by the US, not by Baghdad. UNSCOM chief Richard Butler records in his memoirs that he was called in by US Ambassador to the UN Peter Burleigh, and advised to be 'prudent' with the safety of UNSCOM staff. 'Repeating a familiar script, I told him that I would act on this advice and remove my staff from Iraq.' (Saddam Defiant, p. 224) UNSCOM withdrew, creating the right political climate for days of US/UK military strikes, and leading to the destruction of the agency. The US shut down UNSCOM in 1998 to pave the way for war. President Bush is trying to re-run this bad movie with UNSCOM's successor, UNMOVIC. He must be stopped. ARROW BOOK War Plan Iraq: Ten Reasons Against War On Iraq by Milan Rai (Verso, 2002) 'Readable and well-sourced' The Times 'Excellent' Tariq Ali 'Required reading' Professor Paul Rogers More ARROW Anti-War Briefings available <j-n- v.org> or from 0845 458 2564 PLEASE SUPPORT ARROW (Active Resistance to the Roots of War) We are making as many briefings as we can. Please help with printing/distribution by sending cheques to 'ARROW' (marked 'briefings'), c/o NVRN, 162 Holloway Rd, London N7 8DQ. PLEDGE OF RESISTANCE Sign online at the ARROW WEBSITE <www.j-n-v.org> ************************************************* SECOND RESOLUTION Defend the UN Charter: Oppose War on Iraq ARROW Anti-War Briefing 28 (10 February 2003) WAR PLAN IRAQ Update Number 7 EVEN WITH A NEW RESOLUTION, THIS WAR IS WRONG The Prime Minister is confident that he can win a second UN Resolution, and that this will persuade a large chunk of anti-war opinion to come over to his side. The opinion polls show that a majority of people in Britain oppose war on Iraq without UN authorisation, but a majority of people would support (or stop opposing) a war covered by a new UN resolution. But a war on Iraq in the present circumstances would be an attack not only on the civilian population of Iraq, but on the core principles of the UN itself, an attack on the United Nations Charter. The anti-war movement must defend the UN Charter, against the UN Security Council if necessary. 'MATERIAL BREACH'/'SERIOUS CONSEQUENCES' It is unlikely that a new UN Resolution will explicitly authorise the use of force under US leadership, as UN Resolution 84 did in July 1950, covering the Korean War. It is more likely that the Resolution will declare Iraq in 'material breach' of its disarmament duties, and threaten 'serious consequences'. These vague phrases do not amount to an authorisation to use force. Iraq may be in 'material breach' of past UN Resolutions, but none of them authorised the use of force in the event of Iraqi non- co-operation with UN inspectors. (See ARROW Anti- War Briefing 25: Material Breach for more on this.) WHAT THE UN CHARTER SAYS Even if the Resolution did explicitly 'authorise' the use of force, war would not be legal. Article 39 of the UN Charter: 'The Security Council shall determine the existence of any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression and shall make recommendations, or decide what measures shall be taken in accordance with Articles 41 and 42, to maintain or restore international peace and security.' Art. 41 deals with nonmilitary measures. Art. 42: 'Should the Security Council consider that measures provided for in Article 41 would be inadequate or have proved to be inadequate, it may take such action by air, sea, or land forces as may be necessary to maintain or restore international peace and security.' So there are two tests: there has to be a 'threat to peace' and nonmilitary means are 'inadequate'. IRAQ IS NOT A 'THREAT TO PEACE' British Vice-Admiral Sir James Jungius KBE observed in a letter to The Times (1 Jan., p. 25): 'Even if the weapons do exist, where is the evidence of intent to use them? War is too important and unpleasant a business to be undertaken on the basis of a hunch, however good that hunch may be.' Former Conservative Cabinet Minister Douglas Hogg: 'The real question is not whether he's got weapons of mass destruction, but rather whether-if he has got those weapons-he is a grave and imminent threat to the rest of us... even if he had these things, unless he's a grave and imminent threat there isn't a moral basis for war, because the doctrine of self-defence isn't properly invoked.' (BBC Radio 4, The World This Weekend, 12 Jan.) At the time of writing, it has not been proved that Iraq possesses weapons of mass destruction (WMD)-it has certainly not been shown that Iraq intends to use its weapons in an aggressive manner. 'ADEQUATE' NONVIOLENT MEASURES: INSPECTION To contain Iraq's suspected weapons programmes: 1) we can detect and disarm any remaining weapons capability, and 2) we can 'freeze' Iraq's capacity to make such weapons, to prevent their development and use in the future. The US has contrasted Iraqi behaviour unfavourably with that of South Africa, which engaged in voluntary nuclear disarmament verified by the International Atomic Energy Authority. The head of the IAEA, 'Mr ElBaradei later noted that, even with co-operation, this had taken two years.' (Financial Times, 28 Jan., p. 9) It was two years after IAEA inspections began that South African President F.W. de Klerk announced in Mar. 1993 that Pretoria had actually developed 'a limited nuclear deterrent'-the IAEA then carried out inspections over the next five months, building on several months of inspections in 1991. (IAEA Bulletin, Vol. 37 No. 1, search <www.iaea.org/worldatom/Periodicals/>) Weapons inspectors from the IAEA and the UN Monitoring and Ongoing Verification Commission (UNMOVIC) have only been at work in Iraq for two months-since 27 Nov. 2002, when they started their work almost from scratch after a four-year gap. They need more time. Months not weeks. 'To carry out a thorough inspection would likely take several months.' Ewen Buchanan, spokesperson for UNMOVIC. (FT, 9 Jan., p. 10) Mohammed El Baradei, head of IAEA inspections in Iraq, told the Security Council on 27 Jan., 'Barring exceptional circumstances and provided there is sustained co- operation by Iraq, we should be able within the next few months to provide credible assurance that Iraq has no nuclear weapons programme. These few months, in my view, would be a valuable investment in peace because they could help us to avoid a war.' (Financial Times, 28 Jan., p. 9) 'Seven out of ten Americans would give UN weapons inspectors months more to seach for arms inside Iraq, according to yesterday's Washington Post.' (Times, 23 Jan., p. 15) This figure fell after Colin Powell's misleading Security Council presentation (see ARROW Briefing 29: 'Game Over'). The international community certainly wants more time: 'There is no reason to give a time-limit' on inspections, said Jean-Marc de la Sabliere, France's UN envoy, speaking for most of the world. (Times, 10 Jan., p. 1) US INTENT ON FLOUTING RESOLUTION 1284 Para. 7 of UN Resolution 1284 (from Dec. 1999) says, 'not later than 60 days' after the IAEA and UNMOVIC have started work in Iraq, inspectors should draw up a 'work programme' including 'the key remaining disarmament tasks to be completed by Iraq'. 60 days ran out on 27 Jan., but there's no plan yet. Dr Hans Blix, head of UNMOVIC, reminded reporters of Resolution 1284 on 9 Jan., saying that it 'foresees that we will define in due course which are the key remaining disarmament tasks and the Security Council will approve them. And then it will be for Iraq to try to satisfy those tasks. So February is not the end of time.' (<www.unmovic.org> 'Recent Items'.) We should now be beginning the process of verified disarmament in Iraq, not contemplating the forced end of inspections because of US bullying. The weapons inspectors themselves, almost half the US public, the international community, and the main UN Resolution governing the work of the weapons inspectors, all want more time for inspectors to detect and disarm-months not weeks. 'ADEQUATE' NONVIOLENT MEASURES: MONITORING More importantly, UN weapons inspectors could now install throughout Iraq a system of video cameras, radiation detectors, temperature sensors and other devices to monitor 'dual-use' equipment that might be used for developing weapons of mass destruction as well as for normal civilian purposes. Video and air sampling information could be fed back live to the inspectors' Baghdad HQ, and then onto the UN in New York, as they did before Dec. 1998. Colin Powell told the Security Council on 5 Feb. that Iraq had 'embedded key portions of its illicit chemical weapons [CW] infrastructure within its legitimate civilian industry': 'To all outward appearances, even to experts, the infrastructure looks like an ordinary civilian operation. Illicit and legitimate production can go on simultaneously or on a dime.' In the real world, as former UN weapons inspector Scott Ritter has pointed out, 'individual pieces of CW production equipment are worthless unless they are assembled in a specific configuration, a unique combination that would be readily discernible to weapons inspectors.' According to the UN inspection agency UNSCOM, 'Only the proper combination of different pieces of equipment in a particular configuration gives to... these pieces of equipment the status of a CW production facility.' (quoted by Ritter, Arms Control Today, June 2000) As long as the video cameras are rolling, we would know if Iraq's chemical industry was being used to produce weapons. Temperature sensors can apparently play a similar role for biological weapons, and radiation detectors for any nuclear weapons programme. THE SECURITY COUNCIL IS NOT ABOVE THE LAW Careful readers will have noticed that it is up to the Security Council to 'determine' whether there is a threat to peace, and to 'consider' whether nonviolent means are inadequate. However, this cannot be a licence for the Security Council to make war at whim. There must be some objective basis in fact for the findings that (a) there is a 'threat to peace' and (b) that nonviolent means are 'inadequate'. In the present case, there are no threatening military deployments, no signalled threats, and no doctrine of aggressive attack-by Iraq. The evidence is that it is the US, not Iraq, that currently poses a 'threat to peace' in the Gulf. Similarly, there are nonviolent measures for detecting, disarming and preventing the re-development of weapons of mass destruction which have not yet been exhausted-which have barely begun to be explored. If there is a UN Security Council Resolution which explicitly 'authorises' military action against Iraq, we must protest against this breach of the UN Charter, the foundations of the world's legal order. If there is a UN Security Council Resolution which only refers to a 'material breach' and 'serious consequences', this is not even an attempted 'authorisation' of war. We must protect the UN Charter-from Washington, London, and, if necessary, the UN Security Council. The UN Charter is there 'to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind.' (Preamble) ARROW BOOK War Plan Iraq: Ten Reasons Against War On Iraq by Milan Rai (Verso, 2002) 'Readable and well-sourced' The Times 'Excellent' Tariq Ali 'Required reading' Professor Paul Rogers More ARROW Anti-War Briefings available <j-n- v.org> or from 0845 458 2564 PLEASE SUPPORT ARROW (Active Resistance to the Roots of War) We are making as many briefings as we can. Please help with printing/distribution by sending cheques to 'ARROW' (marked 'briefings'), c/o NVRN, 162 Holloway Rd, London N7 8DQ. PLEDGE OF RESISTANCE Sign online at the ARROW WEBSITE <www.j-n-v.org> sign the pledge of resistance to the "war on terrorism" www.j-n-v.org _______________________________________________ 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