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[casi] Weekly News Analysis: December 22, 2002

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News Analysis
December 22, 2002

  a.. This week saw the pressure on Saddam Hussein turning up a notch with:

  1.. the conclusion of the Iraqi opposition conference, which resulted in a blue-print for Iraq's 
democratisation and a follow up committee which is set to meet in northern Iraq in the Kurdish safe 
haven on January 15, 2003
  2.. Hanx Blix declaring Iraq's dossier as having "nothing new" and having gaps
  3.. Colin Powell stating Iraq is in "material breach" of UN Security Council Resolution 1441, 
which means the campaign to oust Saddam's regime can start as soon as preparations are ready. He 
also listed the aims of a war with Saddam, which included minimising casualties and liberating the 
Iraqi people
  4.. Bush has cancelled a trip to Africa that was scheduled from 10th-17th of January to 
concentrate on Iraq.

  a.. Preparations for war have intensified with the US carrying out the largest live-fire exercise 
in the region since the Gulf War only miles away from Iraq's border.

  b.. US forces have started dropping leaflets and making radio broadcasts over Iraq urging Iraqis 
to rise against Saddam. The war to overthrow Saddam's regime is likely to start with the US bombing 
Iraq from the sky followed by an Iraqi uprising which will then control the streets.

  c.. Currently there are several possible triggers for war, the most likely involving Iraqi 
scientists - either from the information disclosed by them on Saddam's WMD programme or a row over 
interviewing them. January 27, 2003 is likely to be decision day when weapons inspectors submit 
their first report to the Security Council, and military action will start soon after. Tony Blair 
has already told British forces to be prepared for war, with some already at the front line.

  d.. As part of political preparations for war to oust Saddam, Tony Blair has invited Palestinian 
leaders for a conference in London to re-launch the peace process.
New Analysis provided by the Iraqi Prospect Organisation.

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