Iraq: October 7, 2004

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 Interrogations of Saddam Hussein, and his weapons development scientists, as well as an examination of many documents, revealed that Saddam had shut down his chemical, biological and nuclear weapons programs in the early 1990s, but had made arrangements to quickly resume the programs once UN sanctions were lifted. To that end, Saddam engaged in an extensive program of bribery to get France, Russia and China to back Iraqi efforts to have the UN sanctions lifted. Saddam, it has now been documented, acquired nearly ten billion dollars via abuse of the "Oil for Food" program and criminal activities in the 1990s. This was used for keeping his supporters happy, and for bribing foreigners. Saddam said he did not admit that he had shut down his weapons programs because he feared that this would encourage Iran to attack. This is not unreasonable, as Saddam, personally, was very much hated in Iran. After the 1991 war, Iran knew that Iraq was weak militarily, and an invasion by Iran was a very real threat. If such an attack did come, Iraq's chemical and biological weapons would have been a major factor in defeating the Iranians. This was the case during the 1980s war with Iran (triggered by an Iraqi invasion of Iran in 1980.)

 

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