Iraq’s Agony Based on Gross DeceptionPosted: June 16, 2014
Iraq’s Agony Based on Gross Deception
by JBS President John F. McManus
The entire Iraq nation appears now to be vulnerable to takeover by hardline Islamists determined to impose strict Islamic law on that unhappy land. But Iraq’s agony, largely brought on by U.S. diplomacy, actually began many years before. The American role started with the 1990 absorption of Kuwait by Iraq.
Months before Saddam Hussein’s forces marched into its southeastern neighbor, U.S. Ambassador April Glaspie met with Saddam in Baghdad. She pointedly asked him why he was massing 30,000 troops on the Iraq-Kuwait border. The Iraqi dictator reminded her that Iraq considered Kuwait part of Iraq as it had been prior to 1918. And he mentioned the current disputes over the actual border between the two countries as well as jurisdiction over the strategic waterway known as the Shatt al Arab. He then asked Glaspie for the U.S. position on these matters.
Glaspie promptly assured Hussein that the U.S. had “no opinion” and even stated that she had been directed by Secretary of State James Baker to emphasize that stand. Within days, State Department spokesperson Margaret Tutweiler backed up what Glaspie had said in a DC press conference and Assistant Secretary of State John Kelly did likewise in testimony before a congressional panel. Less than a week later, while believing a green light for such action had been given by Washington, Saddam ordered his troops into Kuwait to take control of the country. Immediately, President George H.W. Bush went ballistic and sought authorization from the UN to reverse Saddam’s action with a military coalition he would assemble and lead. He emphasized repeatedly that the forthcoming attack on Iraq would usher in the “New World Order.”
One month later, April Glaspie was recalled to Washington and silenced by her State Department superiors. Several months later, in answers she provided to queries posed by a Senate panel, she claimed that she was the victim of “deliberate deception on a massive scale.” Eventually shipped off to South Africa and posted to a minor assignment, she retired in 2002. The Desert Storm (1991) conflict was over in several days as hundreds of thousands of U.S. troops and allied contingents forced Saddam’s forces out of Kuwait. But President Bush continued even after the short-lived triumph to refer to it as the ushering in of the “New World Order.” In other words, there were motives for that engagement far beyond anything related to Kuwait or Iraq.
After 9/11, the second President Bush insisted that his reasons for targeting Iraq included Saddam’s reported possession of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), his country’s ties to Al Qaeda, and Iraq’s complicity in the 9/11 attack. But after Scott Ritter had spent seven years as the UN’s chief inspector searching all over Iraq for WMDs, he repeatedly stated prior to the second war against Iraq that none had ever been found. Nor had anyone uncovered evidence linking Saddam’s government to Al Qaeda or to the 9/11 attack. In England, an Iraqi defector from his homeland known as “Curveball” later confessed that he was the chief supplier of phony claims about WMDs. He stated publicly that the second war against Iraq was based on “lies.” But the U.S. invaded again in 2003 and our nation’s casualties over the next seven years totaled more than 4,000 dead and over 30,000 wounded.
The number of dead and wounded Iraqis has been much greater. Of the 1.5 million Christians living peacefully in Iraq’s formerly placid and multicultural society, there are now fewer than 400,000. Many have been killed and more than a million have fled. Those who remain are now in militant Islam’s crosshairs. So much for being “liberated” by U.S. forces.
Today, there are cries for the U.S. to conduct new military actions to save Iraq from its latest scourge. We can only wonder what new lies are being spread.
Issues concerning foreign policy and America’s role in the affairs of other countries can be found on The John Birch Society’s website.