Saudi government help for Isis extremists in Iraq


This video from the USA is called Willful Deceit: Michael Moore Speaks Out on The Iraq War Anniversary, Bush Crimes.

It says about itself:

24 March 2013

Bush Perverted, Distorted and Tarnished America’s Image Beyond Repair.

This video from the USA is called Bandar Bush. About Saudi royal and secret police boss Prince Bandar, nicknamed ‘Bandar Bush’ because of his close relationship to the Bush dynasty in the USA.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

World View: A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany

Patrick Cockburn

Sunday 13 July 2014

How far is Saudi Arabia complicit in the Isis takeover of much of northern Iraq, and is it stoking an escalating Sunni-Shia conflict across the Islamic world? Some time before 9/11, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, once the powerful Saudi ambassador in Washington and head of Saudi intelligence until a few months ago, had a revealing and ominous conversation with the head of the British Secret Intelligence Service, MI6, Sir Richard Dearlove. Prince Bandar told him: “The time is not far off in the Middle East, Richard, when it will be literally ‘God help the Shia’. More than a billion Sunnis have simply had enough of them.”

The fatal moment predicted by Prince Bandar may now have come for many Shia, with Saudi Arabia playing an important role in bringing it about by supporting the anti-Shia jihad in Iraq and Syria. Since the capture of Mosul by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isis) on 10 June, Shia women and children have been killed in villages south of Kirkuk, and Shia air force cadets machine-gunned and buried in mass graves near Tikrit.

In Mosul, Shia shrines and mosques have been blown up, and in the nearby Shia Turkoman city of Tal Afar 4,000 houses have been taken over by Isis fighters as “spoils of war”. Simply to be identified as Shia or a related sect, such as the Alawites, in Sunni rebel-held parts of Iraq and Syria today, has become as dangerous as being a Jew was in Nazi-controlled parts of Europe in 1940.

There is no doubt about the accuracy of the quote by Prince Bandar, secretary-general of the Saudi National Security Council from 2005 and head of General Intelligence between 2012 and 2014, the crucial two years when al-Qa’ida-type jihadis took over the Sunni-armed opposition in Iraq and Syria. Speaking at the Royal United Services Institute last week, Dearlove, who headed MI6 from 1999 to 2004, emphasised the significance of Prince Bandar’s words, saying that they constituted “a chilling comment that I remember very well indeed”.

He does not doubt that substantial and sustained funding from private donors in Saudi Arabia and Qatar, to which the authorities may have turned a blind eye, has played a central role in the Isis surge into Sunni areas of Iraq. He said: “Such things simply do not happen spontaneously.” This sounds realistic since the tribal and communal leadership in Sunni majority provinces is much beholden to Saudi and Gulf paymasters, and would be unlikely to cooperate with Isis without their consent.

Dearlove’s explosive revelation about the prediction of a day of reckoning for the Shia by Prince Bandar, and the former head of MI6’s view that Saudi Arabia is involved in the Isis-led Sunni rebellion, has attracted surprisingly little attention. Coverage of Dearlove’s speech focused instead on his main theme that the threat from Isis to the West is being exaggerated because, unlike Bin Laden’s al-Qa’ida, it is absorbed in a new conflict that “is essentially Muslim on Muslim”. Unfortunately, Christians in areas captured by Isis are finding this is not true, as their churches are desecrated and they are forced to flee. A difference between al-Qa’ida and Isis is that the latter is much better organised; if it does attack Western targets the results are likely to be devastating.

The forecast by Prince Bandar, who was at the heart of Saudi security policy for more than three decades, that the 100 million Shia in the Middle East face disaster at the hands of the Sunni majority, will convince many Shia that they are the victims of a Saudi-led campaign to crush them. “The Shia in general are getting very frightened after what happened in northern Iraq,” said an Iraqi commentator, who did not want his name published. Shia see the threat as not only military but stemming from the expanded influence over mainstream Sunni Islam of Wahhabism, the puritanical and intolerant version of Islam espoused by Saudi Arabia that condemns Shia and other Islamic sects as non-Muslim apostates and polytheists.

Dearlove says that he has no inside knowledge obtained since he retired as head of MI6 10 years ago to become Master of Pembroke College in Cambridge. But, drawing on past experience, he sees Saudi strategic thinking as being shaped by two deep-seated beliefs or attitudes. First, they are convinced that there “can be no legitimate or admissible challenge to the Islamic purity of their Wahhabi credentials as guardians of Islam’s holiest shrines”. But, perhaps more significantly given the deepening Sunni-Shia confrontation, the Saudi belief that they possess a monopoly of Islamic truth leads them to be “deeply attracted towards any militancy which can effectively challenge Shia-dom”.

Western governments traditionally play down the connection between Saudi Arabia and its Wahhabist faith, on the one hand, and jihadism, whether of the variety espoused by Osama bin Laden and al-Qa’ida or by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s Isis. There is nothing conspiratorial or secret about these links: 15 out of 19 of the 9/11 hijackers were Saudis, as was Bin Laden and most of the private donors who funded the operation.

The difference between al-Qa’ida and Isis can be overstated: when Bin Laden was killed by United States forces in 2011, al-Baghdadi released a statement eulogising him, and Isis pledged to launch 100 attacks in revenge for his death.

But there has always been a second theme to Saudi policy towards al-Qa’ida type jihadis, contradicting Prince Bandar’s approach and seeing jihadis as a mortal threat to the Kingdom. Dearlove illustrates this attitude by relating how, soon after 9/11, he visited the Saudi capital Riyadh with Tony Blair.

He remembers the then head of Saudi General Intelligence “literally shouting at me across his office: ‘9/11 is a mere pinprick on the West. In the medium term, it is nothing more than a series of personal tragedies. What these terrorists want is to destroy the House of Saud and remake the Middle East.'” In the event, Saudi Arabia adopted both policies, encouraging the jihadis as a useful tool of Saudi anti-Shia influence abroad but suppressing them at home as a threat to the status quo. It is this dual policy that has fallen apart over the last year.

Saudi sympathy for anti-Shia “militancy” is identified in leaked US official documents. The then US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton wrote in December 2009 in a cable released by Wikileaks that “Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for al-Qa’ida, the Taliban, LeT [Lashkar-e-Taiba in Pakistan] and other terrorist groups.” She said that, in so far as Saudi Arabia did act against al-Qa’ida, it was as a domestic threat and not because of its activities abroad. This policy may now be changing with the dismissal of Prince Bandar as head of intelligence this year. But the change is very recent, still ambivalent and may be too late: it was only last week that a Saudi prince said he would no longer fund a satellite television station notorious for its anti-Shia bias based in Egypt.

The problem for the Saudis is that their attempts since Bandar lost his job to create an anti-Maliki and anti-Assad Sunni constituency which is simultaneously against al-Qa’ida and its clones have failed.

By seeking to weaken Maliki and Assad in the interest of a more moderate Sunni faction, Saudi Arabia and its allies are in practice playing into the hands of Isis which is swiftly gaining full control of the Sunni opposition in Syria and Iraq. In Mosul, as happened previously in its Syrian capital Raqqa, potential critics and opponents are disarmed, forced to swear allegiance to the new caliphate and killed if they resist.

The West may have to pay a price for its alliance with Saudi Arabia and the Gulf monarchies, which have always found Sunni jihadism more attractive than democracy. A striking example of double standards by the western powers was the Saudi-backed suppression of peaceful democratic protests by the Shia majority in Bahrain in March 2011. Some 1,500 Saudi troops were sent across the causeway to the island kingdom as the demonstrations were ended with great brutality and Shia mosques and shrines were destroyed.

An alibi used by the US and Britain is that the Sunni al-Khalifa royal family in Bahrain is pursuing dialogue and reform. But this excuse looked thin last week as Bahrain expelled a top US diplomat, the assistant secretary of state for human rights Tom Malinowksi, for meeting leaders of the main Shia opposition party al-Wifaq. Mr Malinowski tweeted that the Bahrain government’s action was “not about me but about undermining dialogue”.

Western powers and their regional allies have largely escaped criticism for their role in reigniting the war in Iraq. Publicly and privately, they have blamed the Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki for persecuting and marginalising the Sunni minority, so provoking them into supporting the Isis-led revolt. There is much truth in this, but it is by no means the whole story. Maliki did enough to enrage the Sunni, partly because he wanted to frighten Shia voters into supporting him in the 30 April election by claiming to be the Shia community’s protector against Sunni counter-revolution.

But for all his gargantuan mistakes, Maliki’s failings are not the reason why the Iraqi state is disintegrating. What destabilised Iraq from 2011 on was the revolt of the Sunni in Syria and the takeover of that revolt by jihadis, who were often sponsored by donors in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and United Arab Emirates. Again and again Iraqi politicians warned that by not seeking to close down the civil war in Syria, Western leaders were making it inevitable that the conflict in Iraq would restart. “I guess they just didn’t believe us and were fixated on getting rid of [President Bashar al-] Assad,” said an Iraqi leader in Baghdad last week.

Of course, US and British politicians and diplomats would argue that they were in no position to bring an end to the Syrian conflict. But this is misleading. By insisting that peace negotiations must be about the departure of Assad from power, something that was never going to happen since Assad held most of the cities in the country and his troops were advancing, the US and Britain made sure the war would continue.

The chief beneficiary is Isis which over the last two weeks has been mopping up the last opposition to its rule in eastern Syria. The Kurds in the north and the official al-Qa’ida representative, Jabhat al-Nusra, are faltering under the impact of Isis forces high in morale and using tanks and artillery captured from the Iraqi army. It is also, without the rest of the world taking notice, taking over many of the Syrian oil wells that it did not already control.

Saudi Arabia has created a Frankenstein’s monster over which it is rapidly losing control. The same is true of its allies such as Turkey which has been a vital back-base for Isis and Jabhat al-Nusra by keeping the 510-mile-long Turkish-Syrian border open. As Kurdish-held border crossings fall to Isis, Turkey will find it has a new neighbour of extraordinary violence, and one deeply ungrateful for past favours from the Turkish intelligence service.

As for Saudi Arabia, it may come to regret its support for the Sunni revolts in Syria and Iraq as jihadi social media begins to speak of the House of Saud as its next target. It is the unnamed head of Saudi General Intelligence quoted by Dearlove after 9/11 who is turning out to have analysed the potential threat to Saudi Arabia correctly and not Prince Bandar, which may explain why the latter was sacked earlier this year.

Nor is this the only point on which Prince Bandar was dangerously mistaken. The rise of Isis is bad news for the Shia of Iraq but it is worse news for the Sunni whose leadership has been ceded to a pathologically bloodthirsty and intolerant movement, a sort of Islamic Khmer Rouge, which has no aim but war without end.

The Sunni caliphate rules a large, impoverished and isolated area from which people are fleeing. Several million Sunni in and around Baghdad are vulnerable to attack and 255 Sunni prisoners have already been massacred. In the long term, Isis cannot win, but its mix of fanaticism and good organisation makes it difficult to dislodge.

“God help the Shia,” said Prince Bandar, but, partly thanks to him, the shattered Sunni communities of Iraq and Syria may need divine help even more than the Shia.

Bush administration responsible for present Iraq bloodshed, Bush’s ex-neocolonial ruler Bremer admits


This video from the British parliament is called Impeach Tony Blair over Iraq War lies (18 June 2014).

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

19 June 2014, 00:06

The United States is partly responsible for the current crisis in Iraq. So says the former U.S. administrator in Iraq, Paul Bremer. In an interview with Nieuwsuur TV show Bremer replied to the question whether the USA is responsible: “We are responsible; I am not denying that.”

Cameron’s ‘Mission Accomplished’ gaffe, like Bush


This video from the USA says about itself:

Ten Years After ‘Mission (NOT) Accomplished’

2 May 2013

Thom Hartmann looks at the results of the Iraq war on this the 10th anniversary of President George W. Bush’s ‘Mission Accomplished’ stunt.

This video says about itself:

Cameron‘s ‘mission accomplished’ = Afghan war was a waste”

17 Dec 2013

The military mission in Afghanistan is accomplished – at least that’s what the UK Prime Minister told soldiers there in a pre-Christmas visit. His cheering words come as drug trafficking in the country reaches record levels, and the Afghan national army surrenders key checkpoints in Southern Afghanistan to Taliban – in return for an end to attacks. RT spoke to an Iraq war veteran who believes that Cameron is trying to put a brave face on a sorry business.

From AFP news agency:

Cameron under fire for Afghan mission remark

December 18, 2013 – 7:13:26 am

LONDON: British Prime Minister David Cameron faced criticism yesterday for saying that foreign troops had accomplished their mission of providing security in Afghanistan, in an echo of former US president George W Bush’s much-derided comments on Iraq in 2003.

During an annual Christmas visit to British troops in Afghanistan on Monday, Cameron was asked about the ongoing unrest ahead of the scheduled end of international combat operations in a year’s time. Asked if British soldiers will be coming home with “mission accomplished”, Cameron told British media: “Yes, I think they do.” …

Opposition politicians and British newspapers criticised Conservative leader Cameron’s comments. Vernon Coaker, defence spokesman for the opposition Labour party, said Cameron “should have chosen his words more carefully.”

See also here.

Indeed, Cameron‘s words are as much empty war propaganda as Bush’s ten years ago. Coaker should have gone further, and should have criticized the whole Afghan war; including the role of his own party leaders Tony Blair and George Brown in it.

Cameron hides truth on Iraq war


This video from the USA is called WMD LIES – Bush Cheney Rumsfeld – THE ULTIMATE CLIP (Edited).

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Anti-war activists press for release of Iraq documents

Saturday 9th November 2013

Peace campaigners scold David Cameron

Peace campaigners scolded David Cameron yesterday after the Tory Prime Minister excused the cover-up documents that would reveal the full story behind Britain’s invasion of Iraq.

Sir John Chilcot has made 10 requests for access to the classified information in order to conclude his inquiry into [the] 2003 attack and publish a report.

They include 130 transcripts of conversations between former Labour prime ministers Tony Blair and Gordon Brown with former US president George Bush.

Details of around 200 cabinet discussions and 25 notes from Mr Blair to Mr Bush are also included in the documents.

But Cabinet Secretary Jeremy Heywood has stalled the process over what Mr Cameron called concerns over “sensitivity” in a letter to Mr Chilcot.

Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament leader Kate Hudson accused the government of driving the inquiry from the long grass and “into the woods.”

She said: “How much longer can they keep up this charade? It is now over a decade since Tony Blair took the UK into a bloody war in Iraq based on a lie.

“To say these conversations are ‘central’ to the inquiry is an understatement – they are crucial to understanding the path to war, including if Blair guaranteed unconditional UK support for an illegal invasion.”

Menzies Campbell, who was Lib Dem foreign affairs spokesman at the time of the invasion, also labelled the hold-up as “intolerable.”

He added: “The Iraq adventure is one of the most serious failures of government policy in the last 50 years.”

See also here.

Fifty governments in global torture


This video from the USA says about itself:

Sep 29, 2006

Based on incorrect information, Canadian ‘renditions’ victim Mahar Arar was kidnapped by U.S. authorities and sent to Syria to be tortured. Arar explains why he told the torturers the lies they wanted to hear.

By Joshua Hersh in the USA:

Extraordinary Rendition Report Finds More Than 50 Nations Involved In Global Torture Scheme

Posted: 02/04/2013 11:14 pm EST  |  Updated: 02/05/2013 11:24 am EST

WASHINGTON — The U.S. counterterrorism practice known as extraordinary rendition, in which suspects were quietly moved to secret prisons abroad and often tortured, involved the participation of more than 50 nations, according to a new report released Tuesday by the Open Society Foundations.

The OSF report, which offers the first wholesale public accounting of the top-secret program, puts the number of governments that either hosted CIA “black sites,” interrogated or tortured prisoners sent by the U.S., or otherwise collaborated in the program at 54. The report also identifies by name 136 prisoners who were at some point subjected to extraordinary rendition.

The number of nations and the names of those detained provide a stark tally of a program that was expanded widely — critics say recklessly — by the George W. Bush administration after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and has been heavily condemned in the years since. In December, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), chairwoman of the Senate Select Intelligence Committee, condemned the CIA’s detention and interrogation efforts as “terrible mistakes.”

Although Bush administration officials said they never intentionally sent terrorism suspects abroad in order to be tortured, the countries where the prisoners seemed to end up — Egypt, Libya and Syria, among others — were known to utilize coercive interrogation techniques.

Extraordinary rendition was also a factor in one of the greatest intelligence blunders of the Bush years. Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi, a Libyan national and top al Qaeda operative who was detained in Pakistan in late 2001, was later sent by the U.S. to Egypt. There, under the threat of torture, he alleged that Saddam Hussein had trained al Qaeda in biological and chemical warfare. He later withdrew the claim, but not before the U.S. invaded Iraq in part based on his faulty testimony.

When he came into office, President Barack Obama pledged to end the U.S. government’s use of torture and issued an executive order closing the CIA’s secret prisons around the world.

But Obama did not fully end the practice of rendition, which permits the U.S. to circumvent any due process obligations for terrorism suspects. Instead, the administration said it was relying on the less certain “diplomatic assurances” of host countries that they would not torture suspects sent to them for pretrial detention.

This decision, the OSF report concludes, was tantamount to continuing the program, since in the absence of any public accounting, it was impossible to measure the accuracy of those “assurances.”

Without any public government records to read, Amrit Singh, the OSF’s top legal analyst for national security and counterterrorism and the new report’s author, turned to news reports, the investigations of a global network of human rights organizations, and the proceedings of a handful of foreign courts that have investigated their own countries’ practices.

What Singh saw was a hasty global effort, spearheaded by the United States in the months after 9/11, to bypass longstanding legal structures in order to confront the emerging threat of international terrorism.

Singh condemned the consequences of that effort in the report’s introduction. “By enlisting the participation of dozens of foreign governments in these violations, the United States further undermined longstanding human rights protections enshrined in international law — including, in particular, the norm against torture,” she wrote.

“Responsibility for this damage does not lie solely with the United States,” Singh added, “but also with the numerous foreign governments without whose participation secret detention and extraordinary rendition operations could not have been carried out.”

The list of those nations includes a range of American allies (Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany) and familiar Middle Eastern partners in the messy fight against radical Islam (Jordan, Yemen, the United Arab Emirates). Their alleged levels of participation vary widely, from countries like Poland, which agreed to host CIA black-site prisons, to nations like Portugal and Finland, which merely allowed their airspace and airports to be used for rendition flights.

A few of the nations involved, such as Australia and Sweden, have begun a process of public accounting and compensation for their roles in the process. Others, including Italy and Macedonia, have recently become embroiled in trials of local officials and CIA agents in absentia over their actions.

This story has been updated with links to the Open Society Foundations report, released Tuesday.

See also here.

Bush administration knew Iraq had no WMD’s


This video from the USA says about itself:

Tyler Drumheller, now-retired CIA officer, appears on 60 Minutes to talk about the Bush Administration’s phony, manufactured “intelligence” that they used as the justification to invade Iraq.

Treason, anyone?

From daily News Line in Britain:

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Bush, Cheney and Rice were personally told that Iraq had no WMDs

THE US ThinkProgress website has published the text of the ‘60 Minutes’ TV interview with former CIA official Tyler Drumheller who revealed that in October 2002 a very highly placed Iraqi government official revealed that Iraq had no wmds and that Bush, Cheney, and Rice were personally told this information.

In October 2002, the CIA had made, what it termed, a major intelligence breakthrough on Iraq’s nuclear programme.

Naji Sabri, Iraq’s foreign minister made an agreement to reveal Iraq’s military secrets to the CIA. Tyler Drumheller was in charge of the operation and was questioned on ‘60 Minutes’ by Ed Bradley.

The transcript shows that Drumheller said: ‘This was a very high inner circle of Saddam Hussein, someone who would know what he was talking about.’

Bradley: You knew you could trust this guy?’

Drumheller: We continued to validate him the whole way through.

Bradley: According to Drumheller, CIA Director George Tenet delivered the news about the Iraqi foreign minister at a high level meeting at the White House.

Drumheller: The President, the Vice President, Dr. Rice.

Bradley: And at that meeting?

Drumheller: They were enthusiastic because they said they were excited that we had a high-level penetration of Iraqis.

Bradley: And what did this high level source tell you?

Drumheller: He told us that they had no active weapons of mass destruction programme.

Bradley: So, in the fall of 2002, before going to war, we had it on good authority from a source within Saddam’s inner circle that he didn’t have an active programme for weapons of mass destruction?

Drumheller: Yes.

Bradley: There’s no doubt in your mind about that?

Drumheller: No doubt in my mind at all.

Bradley: It directly contradicts, though, what the President and his staff were telling us.

Drumheller: The policy was set. The war in Iraq was coming, and they were looking for intelligence to fit into the policy, to justify the policy.

Bradley: Drumheller expected the White House to ask for more information from the Iraqi foreign minister. He was taken aback by what happened.

Drumheller: The group that was dealing with preparations for the Iraq war came back and said they’re no longer interested. And we said, Well, what about the intel? And they said, Well, this isn’t about intel anymore. This is about regime change.

Bradley: And if I understand you correctly, when the White House learned that you had this source from the inner circle of Saddam Hussein, they were thrilled with that.

Drumheller: The first we heard, they were. Yes.

Bradley: But when they learned what it was that he had to say, that Saddam did not have the capability to wage nuclear war, weapons of mass destruction?

Drumheller: They stopped being interested in the intelligence.

Bradley: The White House declined to respond to Drumheller’s account of Naji Sabri’ s role, but Secretary of State Rice has said that Sabri, the Iraqi foreign minister-turned-US spy, was just one source, and therefore his information wasn’t reliable.

Drumheller: They certainly took information that came from single sources on uranium, on the yellowcake story and on several other stories that had no corroboration at all, and so you can’t say you only listen to one source, because on many issues they only listened to one source.

Bradley: So you’re saying that if there was a single source and that information from that source backed up the case they were trying to build, then that single source was okay, but if it didn’t, then the single source was not okay because he couldn’t be corroborated.

Drumheller: Unfortunately, that’s what it looks like.

Recently Mike Barker made a Freedom of Information request to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office [in Britain] in relation to two letters written by Sabri.

Dated 2 September 2012 it asked to ‘Please confirm these extracts from two letters from Dr Naji Sabri, Minister for Foreign Affairs under President Saddam Hussein, sent to Kofi Annan Secretary General to the UN.

‘Letter dated 11 June 2002 from the Permanent Representative of Iraq to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General.

‘On instructions from my Government, I have the honour to transmit to you, enclosed herewith, a letter dated 11 June 2002 from Mr Naji Sabri, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Iraq, concerning threats by the United States of America to use its nuclear capability against a number of States, including Iraq.

‘I should be grateful if you would have this letter and its annex circulated as a document of the Security Council.

‘(Signed) Mohammed A. Aldouri.’

The letter stated: ‘Secretary-General

‘On 10 March 2002 United States newspapers leaked information on a confidential report by the United States Department of Defense (the Pentagon) entitled “Re-evaluation of the nuclear situation”, in which it is stated that the Administration of President George W Bush had ordered the Department of Defense to prepare contingency plans for the use of nuclear weapons against China, Iraq, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, the Russian Federation and the Syrian Arab Republic, and that the Department of Defense had submitted the report to the Senate on 8 January 2002. Later, senior United States Administration officials confirmed the information in the report
‘(Signed) Naji Sabri’

The second letter stated: ‘Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Iraq’

September 16, 2002.’

‘Mr. Kofi Annan,

‘The Secretary General of the United Nations

‘Dear Secretary-General, held in your office in New York on 14 and 15 September 2002, with the participation of the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States. . .

‘I am pleased to inform you of the decision of the Government of the Republic of Iraq to allow the return of the United Nations weapons inspectors to Iraq without conditions.

‘The Government of the Republic of Iraq has responded, by this decision, to your appeal, to the appeal of the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States, as well as those of Arab, Islamic and other friendly countries.

‘The Government of the Republic of Iraq has based its decision concerning the return of inspectors on its desire to complete the implementation of the relevant Security Council resolutions and to remove any doubts that Iraq still possesses weapons of mass destruction…

‘This decision is also based on your statement to the General Assembly on 12 September 2002 that the decision by the Government of the Republic of Iraq is the indispensable first step towards an assurance that Iraq no longer possesses weapons of mass destruction and, equally importantly, towards a comprehensive solution that includes the lifting of the sanctions imposed on Iraq and the timely implementation of other provisions of the relevant Security Council resolutions, including resolution 687(1991).

‘To this end, the Government of the Republic of Iraq is ready to discuss the practical arrangements necessary for the immediate resumption of inspections.

‘In this context, the Government of the Republic of Iraq reiterates the importance of the commitment of all Member States of the Security Council and the United Nations to respect the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of Iraq, as stipulated in the relevant Security Council resolutions and article (II) of the Charter of the United Nations.

‘I would be grateful if you bring this letter to the attention of the Security Council members.

‘Please accept, Mr Secretary-General the assurances of my highest consideration.

‘Dr Naji Sabri

‘Minister of Foreign Affairs

‘Republic of Iraq’

While Iraq wanted peace, the US and the UK were determined to go to war and commenced the destruction of Iraq and its infrastructure shortly afterwards, killing hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and turning millions into refugees.