Urbin Report

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Let's look at some history...

Grayhawk takes a look at what happened and what was said by whom in 1998.
Some hightlights:

January 14, 1998: Iraq continues to block the work of the inspection team. The President of the Security Council issues a statement terming Iraq’s actions unacceptable and a clear violation of the relevant resolutions and reiterates its demand that Iraq cooperate fully and immediately without conditions (S/PRST/1998/1).

February 1, 1998: "We must stop Saddam from ever again jeopardizing the stability and security of his neighbors with weapons of mass destruction." - US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright

Early February, 1998: Two technical evaluation meetings (TEMS) take place in Baghdad, reviewing 1998 the position with respect to the chemical weapons agent VX. and missile warheads. The report of the outcome of the meetings is submitted to the Council (document S/1998/176). Despite Iraq’s assertions and it having had a full opportunity to present its views on all matters pertaining to the two issues, the team of UNSCOM international experts conclude unanimously that Iraq has still not provided sufficient information for UNSCOM to conclude that Iraq had undertaken all the disarmament steps required of it in these areas. The Commission’s experts provide the Council with an oral briefing of the outcome on these two TEMS in March 1998.

February 4, 1998: "One way or the other, we are determined to deny Iraq the capacity to develop weapons of mass destruction and the missiles to deliver them. That is our bottom line." - President Bill Clinton.

February 17, 1998: "If Saddam rejects peace and we have to use force, our purpose is clear. We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program." - President Bill Clinton

February 18, 1998: "Iraq is a long way from Ohio, but what happens there matters a great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face. And it is a threat against which we must, and will, stand firm." - Secretary of State US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright

February 18, 1998: "He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten times since 1983." - Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser.

April 8, 1998: The report of the biological weapons TEM is transmitted to the Council (S/1998/308). As with the other TEMs, the experts unanimously conclude that Iraq’s declaration on its biological weapons programme is incomplete and inadequate. (BBC: A UN report claims Iraq is continuing to hold back information about its germ warfare programme)

June 24, 1998 : Richard Butler confirms reports that traces of the nerve gas VX has been found in Iraqi missile fragments. Iraq had always insisted it had not weaponised VX. Iraq dismisses the charges, warning of "grave consequences" if sanctions are not lifted.

October 27, 1998 - Richard Butler says tests carried out by international scientists confirm that Iraq filled missile warheads with the deadly nerve agent VX before the 1991 Gulf War.

October 31, 1998: President Clinton signs the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998:

November 10, 1999: "Hussein has ... chosen to spend his money on building weapons of mass destruction and palaces for his cronies." - US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright

There is much, much more. Stop by and read the whole thing.