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1/25/2018 7:38:29 AM
Posted: 3/30/2002 9:03:08 AM EST
Doing everything they can to sabotage our middle-eastern clean up operation. [V] If they were so concerned why didn't they do this before? I know why too! They fear that we will do to Iraq what we did to Germany, Italy and Japan after WWII. The first real democracy in the region... and they don't want that! It will become the center of attention and put pressure on the rest of them to reform. --------------------------------- March 29, 2002 PACT OVER KUWAIT Baghdad-Kuwait Accord — Support Is Rebuff to Bush's Efforts By NEIL MacFARQUHAR BEIRUT, Lebanon, March 28 — Saddam Hussein secured broad Arab support today in heading off any American military action against his country when the region's leaders declared here that an attack on Iraq would be considered an attack against all Arab states. In return for this support, given at the close of a two-day Arab League summit meeting, Iraq accepted policies it had vehemently rejected in the past. The Iraqi government agreed to recognize Kuwait as an independent state and to not invade again. It also said it would work with the United Nations in carrying out post-gulf-war cease-fire provisions and would join an Arab initiative, approved here, that envisions peace with Israel. Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia took the unusual step of publicly kissing Iraq's representative in front of the television cameras, sealing the idea that the Arabs are ready to begin welcoming Iraq back into their fold. This very public embrace appeared to be a rebuff to the Bush administration and another sign of its limited influence in a region it chose largely to ignore during its first months in office. In Washington, the State Department expressed grave doubts about the accord between Iraq and Kuwait. "If true that would be good," the State Department spokesman, Richard Boucher, said. "But Iraq has never evidenced real intent to respect Kuwaiti sovereignty." He noted that Iraq had a long history of flouting United Nations resolutions and other agreements. "We have to remain profoundly skeptical that Iraq will treat this agreement any differently than the many other times it's agreed to do this," he said. The Arab leaders declared today that they reject "the threat of an aggression on some Arab countries, particularly Iraq, and assert the categorical rejection of attacking Iraq or threatening the security and safety of any Arab state, and consider it a threat to the national security of all the Arab states." Just weeks ago, Vice President Dick Cheney embarked on a Middle East tour promoted as an attempt to line up regional support for carrying the war on terrorism into Iraq. But Saudi Arabia, like most states in the region, was skeptical and appeared to have several motives for its embrace of Iraq today. The government in Riyadh is sensitive to the idea that it would be once again seen as an ally in any attack by the United States on Iraq, a Muslim nation. That sensitivity is partly the result of a widespread domestic impression that America's war on terrorism has actually been an assault on Islam.
Link Posted: 3/30/2002 9:04:13 AM EST
In addition, after the Sept. 11 attacks, the Saudis stressed repeatedly that the first step toward ending the terrorism inspired by Osama bin Laden was to solve the Palestinian conflict, which inspires many in the Arab world to take up arms against the United States and its Arab allies. Today, the message from the Saudis seemed clear. They coordinated an unprecedented Arab peace initiative toward Israel on the very day they also pushed through a surprise Kuwaiti-Iraqi reconciliation, suggesting that if the former problem could be solved, the Iraqi issue could, too. "I think the Saudis are basically sending a message to the Americans to solve the Palestinian question and things will fall into place," said George Hawatmeh, the editor of the Jordanian daily Al Rai. "Take care of the Palestinian problem, the mother of all problems, and we will solve the rest in our own way. We will take care of Iraq." This stance appeared unlikely to impress a Bush administration that sees an Iraq led by Saddam Hussein as a threat to regional and global stability. But Arab leaders are clearly determined to insist on the message already conveyed to Mr. Cheney: in light of escalating Israeli measures against the Palestinians, the very stability of their governments might not withstand another war in the region. Attempts to reconcile Iraq and Kuwait at previous Arab summits failed — from the 1990 meeting immediately after the Iraqi invasion when a Kuwaiti sheik famously hurled plates at the Iraqi delegation to last year's summit in Amman, Jordan, when talks again collapsed. The annual gatherings of Arab heads of state were suspended throughout the 1990's because of the sour relations between Iraq and Kuwait. The Beirut meeting showed all the signs of following the usual pattern, with the Kuwaiti minister of state for foreign affairs summoning the press to his suite Monday to declare that Iraq was up to its old tricks. But the existence of two major regional disputes — the Israeli-Palestinian turmoil and a looming conflict over Iraq — seems to have pushed through a compromise. In order to avoid being attacked, the Iraqis were willing to be more flexible on Kuwaiti and other Arab demands. The other Arab states were eager to find a way to express their discontent over their perception that the United States is so little involved in the region that it could not even ensure the presence of Yasir Arafat, the Palestinian leader, at the summit. The Iraqis were openly gleeful that they had succeeded in getting what seems to amount, at least on paper, to an Arab shield. Their often dour ministers smiled broadly. "They consider any aggression against Iraq as an aggression on pan-Arab, national security," said Muhammad Sayed Sahhaf, the Iraqi minister of information. "It is very strong." The main points of the Iraq-Kuwait entente were included in a separate document called The Beirut Declaration that also included the peace initiative toward Israel. Iraq and Kuwait agreed to respect the independence and territorial integrity of the other, something Iraq has always refused to do in the past, viewing Kuwait as a lost province chopped off by colonial powers.
Link Posted: 3/30/2002 9:05:12 AM EST
The decision by Kuwait to sign the agreement raised the question of whether it could honor its new commitment to respect Iraqi territorial integrity and still allow American forces to operate from its bases. It currently maintains that only air patrols are flown from Kuwait, not attack aircraft. While the Iraq-Kuwait agreement called on Iraq to fulfill all its obligations under the United Nations sanctions, it also called for lifting those sanctions, something Iraq had sought. Mr. Sahhaf declared that Iraq was not troubled by the provision calling for it to work with the United Nations because it believed it already had fulfilled its obligations. "It is balanced, very clear, it doesn't say Iraq should comply, the jargon you hear from American officials," the minister said. "Here they are saying that they call for completing the implementation, if there is anything not implemented, O.K., Iraq is going to complete it." He noted that there had been some discussion around this particular point with the other Arab states and so the declaration welcomed the resumption of dialogue between Iraq and the United Nations. The two sides also agreed to help search for missing prisoners of war. Kuwait says it has 600 missing; Iraq a few years ago suddenly made claims that over 1,000 Iraqis were missing. In setting the tone for the reconciliation, the head of the Iraqi delegation, Izzat Ibrahim, a senior member of the Iraqi Revolutionary Command Council, wore a gold-embroidered robe of black wool of the kind favored by the Gulf Arabs. Usually the Iraqis wear green khaki uniforms or somber business suits. All the delegates at the convention burst into applause when Mr. Ibrahim and Prince Abdullah embraced. The mood was such that even the head of the Kuwaiti delegation, Sheik Sabah al-Ahmed, declared that he had shaken hands with Mr. Ibrahim as well. Sheik Sabah virtually runs Kuwait due to the ill health of both the ruling emir and the crown prince. If anyone was sent reeling by all these gestures, it was the Kuwaiti people. "There can be no rapprochement with Iraq as long as our sons and our prisoners of war are there," said Nasser al-Sanaa, a member of the Kuwaiti Parliament, speaking on Al Jazeera television. "Are we just supposed to forget the past?" he said. "We don't have a problem if we saw that Iraq was rational and repented for the oppression and aggression. But we haven't seen this. There are just words and promises."
Link Posted: 3/30/2002 2:07:29 PM EST
Sounds to me like more reasons for the US to get out of the UN.
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