Monday, July 6, 2009

One thing that has been puzzling me for some time is the frequently reported claim that Saddam Hussein deliberately misled the world about his WMD capability in order to deter attacks on his county, especially by Iran. My recollection of his final years in office, however, is that he was making concession after concession to the UN weapons inspectors to prove that he had no such weapons. Maybe I missed something. Can anyone post via comment here what specifically S. H. did to foster the claimed illusion?

After his capture, Saddam himself agreed with the claim that he was running a WMD bluff, but this could be just his excuse to history for his failure to prevent the US led invasion that ended his government; i.e., although it did not turn out well he had a rational basis for not convincing everyone that his Iraq was WMD free. That could seem less ignoble to his Iraqi nationalist supporters than that he did try to appease his Western antagonists but failed.

Over at Counterpunch, Patrick Cockburn confirms my own impression:
"Hussein explained that Iraq could not appear weak to its enemies, especially Iran," records FBI special agent George Piro who interviewed him. This is the explanation the Iraqi leader presents for keeping the world guessing if he had weapons of mass destruction. In reality, the Iraqi leader made every effort to prove that he had no WMD.
Cockburn's article further suggests that Saddam's characterization of his war on Iran as defensive is also disingenuous. Actually he mistakenly perceived Iran as weak and vulnerable to a war that would have gained territory for Iraq.

Again, I would welcome any report of evidence, not opinion, supporting the thesis that Saddam deliberately misled Iran, or anyone else, about having any WMD capability. Personally, I don't think the man was that stupid, but I could be wrong.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Abusive comments will be deleted.