Interesting Background Reading

This is current events stuff, noting the major players, with dollar figures, in the arming of Iraq.

Not what I’d expected to read at all.

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8 responses to “Interesting Background Reading”

  1. Michael Avatar


    I certainly would not dispute the regional monitory interests in Iraq. Certainly those nations in closer proximity, such as Russia, France and Germany for instance have long viewed stability in the regime to their benefit.

    This is no different than our country’s interest in the Middle East, excepting that they are closer geographically than we are. The U.S. has provided monitory aid and even sold weapons to other Middle Eastern – Arab nations for years. The logic during the "cold war" always was that if we let the Soviet Union or China be their major supplier, then we would then we would be setting on the outside of their sphere of influence.

    I can’t attest to the accuracy of specific figures quoted in Professor Andrew Hamilton’s letter to the editor, I am not familiar with his source and his field of expertise is dermatology, not economics or international affairs. Suffice to say I would not be surprised if they were close.

    The monitory figures to me are less significant than the fact that the U.S. government essentially directed Saddam Hussain’s personal road to power. We thought he a better option at the time.

    Regardless of the regime in power, German, British, Russian, French and Chinese monitory interests were likely to have been at play here. They were buying favored status, oil, and to some degree they felt stability. Just as we have done with Israel, Egypt, Pakistan, India, Iran, and a whole host of other countries over the years.

    One of my concerns is what the future holds in store for a renewal of "cold war" alliances and tensions.

  2. Ter Avatar

    Was it Woodward or Bernstein who said "Follow the money"?

    It was Deep Throat, their informant.

  3. cherylp Avatar

    Hussein hasn’t used weapons of mass destruction yet for one simple reason–he’s either dead or dying.

    If these weapons do get used, it will be the remains of his Baath party that uses them–and they can’t make up their minds as of yet whether they want to do that—but any cornered dog is going to show its teeth.

  4. Rob Avatar

    Never mind the fact that France in general, and Chirac in particular, was responsible for Iraq’s first nuclear reactor intended for creating nuclear weapons. Thank goodness the Israelis had the good sense to bomb the thing to pieces before it was operational. It’s almost like the French want to empower this ruthless dictator. More than likely, though, it’s just about the cash, without serious thought to the consequences.

  5. Peggy Kurilla Avatar
    Peggy Kurilla

    One reason why France, Germany, and Russia opposed this war is that they’re significantly in debt to Iraq; from what I hear, the debts are in the billions of dollars. They fear(ed) that if the government changed, the debts would be defaulted and they’d never get their money back.

    Was it Woodward or Bernstein who said "Follow the money?"

  6. PuristLove Avatar

    you should read this link if you have any interest in hearing the opposing viewpoint stated logically and eloquently. he raises a few really important questions, most especially:

    "In the fog of war – one thing’s for sure – if Saddam ‘s regime indeed has weapons of mass destruction, it is showing an astonishing degree of responsibility and restraint in the teeth of extreme provocation."

    Now, we all know Saddam is a ruthless, evil dictator who will do absolutely anything to maintain his power and has zero scruples about killing hundreds of thousands of people… so why hasn’t he used those weapons of mass destruction which were supposedly our entire purpose for invading?,3604,927712,00.html

  7. Jim Woosley Avatar
    Jim Woosley

    Well, I suspect that the US figure is understated (ignoring commercial sales by US private companies), but it was certainly not of the scale of the other countries.

  8. Ter Avatar

    I wish The Times would offer links, or editorial comments to document the statistics, as these are letters from readers.

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