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[casi] Re Goldsmith decision

Goldsmith's reading of the law is the stuff of Monty Python skits. He is
running for the title of legal beagle for Bush to complement Blair his

If the former resolutions made action legal why on earth was a new
resolution introduced? Why all the arm-twisting and bribes to  get a totally
unnecessary resolution passed? Only when it fails is  it discovered it is
unrequired legally!

Goldsmith ignores these facts among others. The UN security council in 1441
remained "seized of the matter" and hence it was up to the UN to make a
final decision not some member or members on the basis of the earlier
resolutions. Also, 1441 passed unaminously precisely because it did not
authorise war but serious consequences.  The UK and US empahsised this to
bring along doubters. Now they say the opposite. Even some media have gone
along in their sloppiness and said  that
"serious consequences" is diplomatic jargon for force or war. Not so.

Cheers, Ken Hanly
----- Original Message -----
From: "richardbyrne" <>
To: "CASI discussion list" <>; "Andrew
Goreing" <>
Sent: Monday, March 17, 2003 9:53 AM
Subject: [casi] Government spin on legality of war

> Story on Sky news
> War on Iraq is legal, according to the Attorney General Lord Goldsmith.
> He said the combined effect of United Nations Security Council resolutions
> 678, 687 and 1441 gave the US and Britain the right to attack Iraq.
> The UN now has just hours to decide if it will back a US-led invasion.
> Meanwhile Prime Minister Tony Blair will hold an emergency Cabinet meeting
> at 4pm and Foreign Secretary Jack Straw is also expected to address the
> House of Commons at 7pm.
> America, the UK and Spain have so far failed to gain support for a second
> resolution backing military action.
> Earlier President George W Bush said the world is facing a "moment of
> over Iraq.
> Bush said the 15-member Security Council had to agree in the next 24 hours
> on a resolution laying the groundwork for war.
> He left no doubt that the United States and its allies would otherwise
> to invade Iraq without explicit UN backing.
> And with France, Germany, Russia and China insisting they will vote
> a resolution, Mr Blair insisted: "We are going to hold firm to the cause
> have set out, we have made it clear."
> French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin argued: "France cannot
> the resolution that is on the table in New York... which poses an
> and which envisages an automatic use of force."
> Meanwhile Britain and the US, who have a 250,000-strong force in or around
> the Gulf, advised their civilians to leave Kuwait, which is the likely
> launch pad for an invasion of Iraq.
> UN observers, who have monitored the Iraq-Kuwait border since the 1991
> War, stopped operations in the demilitarised zone, which invasion forces
> would have to cross.
> Iraqi President Saddam Hussein told his military commanders that if Iraq
> were attacked, it would take the battle anywhere in the world "wherever
> there is sky, land or water".
> Last Updated: 10:17 UK, Monday March 17, 2003
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: Andrew Goreing <>
> To: peter kiernan <>; <>
> Sent: Monday, March 17, 2003 11:37 AM
> Subject: Re: [casi] UNSC resolutions
> > Hallo List
> >
> > I too would be interested in seeing further info on this...
> >
> > on 18/3/03 12:29 am, peter kiernan at wrote:
> >
> > > Does any-one know of any legal opinion or analysis of the pretty
> misleading
> > > claims made that a war against Iraq, even without authorisation from a
> > > further UNSC resolution, is legal on the grounds that it is enforcing
> the
> > > term of ceasefire as laid out in UNSC resolution 687 of April 1991?
> >
> > Today Lord Goldsmith is meant to be publishing (a portion of) the legal
> > advice he has given to the UK government. He has indicated that it gives
> > what government ministers call "a legal basis" for the attack on Iraq. I
> > suspect it will revolve around exactly this issue Peter Kiernan refers
> > the "revival" of the authorisation to use force in SCR 678, by means of
> > alleged violation of the ceasefire resolution, 687.
> >
> > The government has been using this manoeuvre for some time. In November
> 1998
> > I wrote to the Foreign Office enquiring what exactly was the "clear
> > basis" that the government claimed to have for the (impending) Desert
> > assault. After four months I eventually received an answer; the
> > part read as follows:--
> >
> > "There was a clear legal basis in existing Security Council Resolutions
> for
> > the action we took last December. Security Council Resolution (SCR) 1154
> > made clear that any violation by Iraq of its obligations to allow UNSCOM
> and
> > IAEA unrestricted access would have the severest consequences. Following
> > Iraq's decision of 31 October 1998 to cease cooperation with UNSCOM, the
> > Council, in SCR 1205, established that that decision was a flagrant
> > violation of SCR 687 which laid down the conditions for the 1991
> ceasefire.
> > The Council also recalled that the effective operation of UNSCOM and the
> > IAEA was essential for the implementation of the ceasefire resolution.
> > SCR 1205, therefore, the Security Council implicitly revived the
> > authorisation to use force which it had given in SCR 678."
> >
> > [Letter from the Middle East Dept, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, 15
> March
> > 1999.]
> >
> > Anyway, in answer to Peter's basic question, the most extended
> of
> > this I have seen was by contributors to the CASI discussion list. On
> January
> > 3 Milan Rai published ARROW briefing 25, "MATERIAL BREACH -- The
> Mysterious
> > Phrase That Could Trigger War on Iraq -- WAR PLAN IRAQ Update Number 5"
> > the web at
> >
> > Milan Rai referred to an earlier and even more detailed discussion by
> > Rangwala, which was sent to the list on 22 August 2002 and can be found
> > the archive at
> >
> > Perhaps we could look back at those items, and then see if Goldsmith's
> > publicised opinion breaks new ground? Also, if Milan and Glen have
> anything
> > to add to their earlier statements, or can point us to other supporting
> > opinions, that might be helpful (though perhaps not an urgent necessity
> > right now...)
> >
> > Andrew Goreing
> >
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
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