Jobs @ MG
"Weapons of Mass Destruction"
|There is a general misinformation about the ‘end’ of UN weapons inspection in Iraq..."they continued their work until 1998, when Iraq blocked further access and expelled UNSCOM."
Despite the endless repetition of this untruth in the US press, it still remains a lie. Iraq (or Saddam Hussein if you wish) did not expel the UNSCOM inspection teams. The UN weapons inspection teams left Iraq in 1998 discredited in an international scandal. The Iraqi characterization of UN weapons inspection teams as spies for the US proved to be accurate. Even the generally cooperative Secretary General of the UN, Kofi Annan publicly condemned these UN teams for providing military information to Iraq's military opponent, the US. In this context Richard Butler, the head of the UNSCOM in Iraq, ordered the inspectors out. President Clinton then dropped 200 cruise missile bombs on Iraq for not cooperating with the UN.
The former UNSCOM inspector Scott Ritter describes the record of UN weapons inspection: this intrusion into Iraqi sovereignty was misused by the United States and Great Britain for intelligence collection purposes which had little to do with supporting UNSCOM's disarmament objectives, and everything to do with pursuing an agenda to destabilize, and ultimately topple, the regime of Saddam Hussein. Operation Desert Fox, the 72-hour bombing campaign launched in December 1998 ostensibly to degrade Iraq's weapons production capabilities, underscores this reality: less than 10% of the targets struck dealt with weapons of mass destruction, the vast majority instead focusing on political, military and security facilities which had been identified by UNSCOM inspections. (April 7, 2001)
In summary, UN weapons inspections were used to coordinate US bombing attacks on Iraq. Iraq's refusal to allow the return of weapons inspectors is simply a legitimate act of self-defense. q
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