WEAPONS BUILDUP: CHEMICALS, WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION (WMD)
Pre-2003 (Before the American Invasion of Iraq)
IN THIS SECTION
Iraq-Page One Iraq-Page Two Iraq, Page Three (here) Iraq-Page Four-Links
Books General RAND Key Players: Russia France Germany Chinese Brazil USA
Some Sources for Iraq’s weapons status before OIF: RAND Corp Document - 1960-1990 Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)
Washington Institute for Near East Policy NSDD 139 of April 5, 1984, parts of which remain[ed] classified [as of 2002].
(2004) Treachery: How America’s Friends and Foes are Secretly Arming Our Enemies By Bill Gertz
(defense and national security advisor for Washington Times. Washington Times is often thought of as a biased source. Use your own discretion.
Washington Post articles are listed in this section and elsewhere on this website.
(1990/09/17) How Saddam Built His War Machine – With Western Help. By Glenn Frankel
Excerpt: LONDON -- It's a small, nondescript corporate headquarters nestled within a complex of anonymous office buildings on a quiet
west London side street. But, according to Western defense sources, Technology and Development Group Ltd. is in fact a link in a secret
international network that has supplied Saddam Hussein's Iraq with a vast array of Western arms and technology. Purchased by an Iraqi
firm in 1987, TDG has acquired interests in high-tech European firms and has bought sophisticated machinery and tools that experts say
have helped Saddam develop an ambitious arsenal of advanced, nonconventional weapons. During its eight-year war against Iran, Iraq
became the world's largest retail purchaser of arms. But in recent years, it also has sought the technology to develop its own arms
industry, both to free itself from dependence on foreign suppliers and to develop the kind of doomsday armaments -- nuclear bombs,
chemical and biological weapons, ballistic missiles -- that would make Iraq the Arab world's dominant power. Experts say the
development of Iraq's arms industry has its roots in the desire to lead the Arab world, as well as in Israel's humiliation of the Arab states
in the 1967 Six-Day War. Saddam, whose Baath Socialist Party took power in Iraq the following year, saw the Israeli experience as a lesson
in how a small but resourceful nation could become a regional superpower. He began to put his program into practice in the mid-1970s,
secretly launching projects to develop chemical, biological and nuclear weapons, intelligence sources say. Some of those weapons are
already available and likely to be used by Iraq in any military showdown with U.S. forces. The bleak irony is that much of the technology
and expertise that created those weapons was bought by Iraq in the West, sometimes by deception but often with the silent
acquiescence of Western governments. Those sales continued even after Saddam's regime was accused of using chemical weapons
against Iran and Iraq's own Kurdish citizens.
(2013/09/05)ODonnell: Reagan let Saddam buy and use chemical weapons. By Evan Puschak
1991-1998 Iraq weapons inspections
(2019) 21st Century Armys Race dot com
Excerpt: The RAND Corp document Global Arms Exports To Iraq, 1960-1990 by Rachel Schmidt is a rare public domain source with a
“grocery list” for the weapon systems Iraq bought in the decades prior its ill-fated invasion of Kuwait. Using data collected by the
Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), the tabulation reveals a desperate scramble for whatever armaments any
source offered. It also shows the dates when Chinese weapons deliveries began. Indeed, in 1982 Iraq ordered 700 Type 59 medium tanks
and added 600 Type 69 medium tanks, reaching a total of 1,300. The Type 59, by the way, is a Chinese copy of the Soviet T-55. Likewise,
the Type 69 is an export-ready variant notable for its rubber side skirts. (See photo above.)
(2002/12/18) Germany was 'key supplier' of Saddam
Excerpt: Iraq has identified Germany as the country whose companies did most to help Baghdad in its drive to acquire weapons of mass
destruction, said a German newspaper yesterday. The leftwing Berlin daily, die tageszeitung, said it had obtained a copy of part of the
document handed by Baghdad to the UN earlier this month which supplied details of its weapons programmes. The extract included a list
of foreign companies, of which more than half - 80 - were German. It was also said to contain the names of several private and state
research laboratories as well as numerous individuals from Germany. Die tageszeitung said the list featured British companies, too,
although it did not say how many or name them. It said there were 24 companies from the US - the second-highest tally. It was not
clear which companies were claimed to have sold what and whether they had knowingly or unknowingly contributed to Saddam
Hussein's search for weapons of mass destruction. Nor was it clear which sales to Iraq were said to have been made in violation of arms
control sanctions imposed by Germany after 1980…The report also blew apart an unwritten agreement between the UN, governments
and industry that companies which contributed, wittingly or unwittingly, to Iraq's arms build-up should not be named. The UN weapons
inspection mission in New York spent several days purging the Iraqi declaration of company names.
Die tageszeitung cited 27 companies, including some of the best-known names in German industry such as Daimler-Benz (which merged
with Chrysler of the US four years ago), MAN and Siemens.
Wikipedia dot org
Iraqi Chemical Weapons Program
https colon //en dot wikipedia dot org/wiki/Iraqi_chemical_weapons_program
(1992/07/23) German Firms Primed Iraq’s War Machine. By R. Jeffrey Smith and
Excerpt: In the late 1980s, German export officials noted that Iraq's state-run industrial complex was hungry for gas bottles, lampposts
and milk separators -- and approved exports of metal presses and other equipment necessary to produce them.
At the time, Iraq was a country that Germany and other Western nations had reason to be worried about. But what harm was there in gas
bottles, lampposts and milk separators? The question was woefully naive. Iraq needed the German-designed metal presses not to make
milk separators, but to produce missile combustion chambers and equip plants that were churning out, among other things, uranium
centrifuges for making nuclear weapons. In the wake of last year's Persian Gulf War against Iraq, United Nations inspectors and German
prosecutors are learning just how easily German firms circumvented their country's weak export control mechanisms to sell Iraq the
technology, parts and advice it needed for nuclear, missile, poison gas and germ weapon programs
The Truth of Saddams German Spy
FAS dot org - Iraq
(2003/12/01) Iraqi scientist reports on German/Other help for Iraq Chemical Weapons Program. By Dr. Khalil Ibrahim Al Isa.
Excerpt: Al Zaman (London). Article by Dr Khalil Ibrahim Al Isa, a nuclear science researcher, in Paris: Fresh information on the Iraqi
chemical program; Iraqi money and German brains cooperated in building chemical weapons
Washington Times dot com
Excerpt: Most of Saddam’s most powerful arms were systematically separated from other arms like mortars, bombs and rockets, and sent to Syria
and Lebanon, and possibly to Iran, he said. The Russian involvement in helping disperse Saddam’s weapons, including…
TLDM dot org (Note: this seems likely be a biased source; there is “bible” and “prophecy” listed in the menu bar; the content needs to be
checked out, but is presesnted here because Shaw was an American official who is referred to here)
WMD moved by Russian operatives to Syria and Jordan?
per former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense John A. Shaw
Excerpt: "They were moved by Russian Spetsnaz (special forces) units out of uniform, that were specifically sent to Iraq to move the
weaponry and eradicate any evidence of its existence," he said. Shaw has dealt with weapons-related issues and export controls as a U.S.
government official for 30 years, and was serving as deputy undersecretary of defense for international technology security when the
events he described today occurred.
He called the evacuation of Saddam's WMD stockpiles "a well-orchestrated campaign using two neighboring client states with which the
Russian leadership had a long time security relationship." Shaw was initially tapped to make an inventory of Saddam's conventional
weapons stockpiles, based on intelligence estimates of arms deals he had concluded with the former Soviet Union, China and France.
He estimated that Saddam had amassed 100 million tons of munitions - roughly 60 percent of the entire U.S. arsenal. "The origins of
these weapons were Russian, Chinese and French in declining order of magnitude, with the Russians holding the lion's share and the
Chinese just edging out the French for second place." But as Shaw's office increasingly got involved in ongoing intelligence to identify
Iraqi weapons programs before the war, he also got "a flow of information from British contacts on the ground at the Syrian border and
from London" via non-U.S. government contacts. "The intelligence included multiple sitings of truck convoys, convoys going north to the
Syrian border and returning empty," he said.
Shaw worked closely with Julian Walker, a former British ambassador who had decades of experience in Iraq, and an unnamed Ukranian-
American who was directly plugged in to the head of Ukraine's intelligence service. The Ukrainians were eager to provide the United
States with documents from their own archives on Soviet arms transfers to Iraq and on ongoing Russian assistance to Saddam, to thank
America for its help in securing Ukraine's independence from the Soviet Union, Shaw said. In addition to the convoys heading to Syria,
Shaw said his contacts "provided information about steel drums with painted warnings that had been moved to a cellar of a hospital in
Beirut." But when Shaw passed on his information to the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and others within the U.S. intelligence
community, he was stunned by their response. "My report on the convoys was brushed off as ‘Israeli disinformation,'" he said. One
month later, Shaw learned that the DIA general counsel complained to his own superiors that Shaw had eaten from the DIA "rice bowl." It
was a Washington euphemism that meant he had commited the unpardonable sin of violating another agency's turf. The CIA responded
in even more diabolical fashion. "They trashed one of of my Brits and tried to declare him persona non grata to the intelligence
community," Shaw said. "We got constant indicators that Langley was aggressively trying to discredit both my Ukranian-American and me
in Kiev," in addition to his other sources.
https colon //en dot wikipedia dot org/wiki/French_support_for_Iraq_during_the_Iran–Iraq_War
French weapons sold to Iraq, in general, tended to be higher technology and more complex than the Soviet weapons bought by Iraq. The training
in their use was considerably different, as the French weapons usually required more decision making by the pilots, while the use of Soviet air-to-
air weapons tended to be at the orders of a ground controller.
https colon //en dot wikipedia dot org/wiki/French_support_for_Iraq_during_the_Iran–Iraq_War
Excerpt: Wolfowitz wrongly says Germany, France thought Iraq had WMD
Fifteen years after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the debate continues over the events that led to the Iraq War.
Appearing on NBC’s Meet the Press on the anniversary of the attacks, Paul Wolfowitz took questions from host Chuck Todd on the causes
and outcomes of the war. Todd asked Wolfowitz, a former deputy secretary of defense, about the war’s stated rationale, which was that
Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction.
Todd: "Let me ask you this, then, who lied? Is it bad intelligence? You know, somebody got us into this and somebody convinced the
United States Congress that weapons of mass destruction were imminent in Iraq, which is why so many Democrats and Republicans
voted for this war. So who lied?"
Wolfowitz: "I think the original liar is Saddam Hussein, who lied about what he had and we discovered he had more. Later, it seems he
was lying that he had more than he really did have because he wanted to supposedly deceive the Iranians. The fact is, every intelligence
service in the world, not just the Americans, the British, the Germans, the French, countries that opposed us in the war all believe that he
had weapons of mass destruction."
The charge that President George W. Bush lied about the Iraq threat has spurred a cottage industry of accusers and defenders. Wolfowitz
served under Bush from 2001 to 2005, and remains a Bush defender.
(2004/09/08) French Connection armed Saddam
The United States stood by for years as supposed allies helped its enemies obtain the world’s most dangerous weapons, reveals Bill Gertz,
defense and national security reporter for The Washington Times, in the new book “Treachery” (Crown Forum). In this excerpt, he details
France’s persistence in arming Saddam Hussein.
New York Times
(2003/03/11 )THREATS AND RESPONSES: DISCORD; France to Veto Resolution On Iraq War, Chirac Says. By Elaine Sciolino
21st Century Asian Arms Race dot com
(2019/03/130 Did Saddam Hussein Buy 3,000 Chinese Tanks?
Excerpt: The figures pre-Operation Iraqi Freedom always mentioned enemy tanks were aging T-55’s and Type 59’s with several hundred T-72M’s
among them. Still, the Pentagon never released a detailed inventory of Iraqi armor after 2003 so it’s impossible to ascertain how many of which
models were left to defend Saddam’s doomed regime. Between the figures collected by SIPRI 30 years ago and other open sources on Iraqi tank
strength circa the Gulf War, Iraq did amass at least 5,000 tanks and 4,000 were supplied by the Soviet Union and its allies…If SIPRI’s data at the
time was incomplete and Iraq ordered 1,000 Type 59 tanks and 2,000 Type 69 tanks in 1982, then China was living up to its reputation as a world-
class battle tank exporter
(1991/0/29) Who Helped Arm Saddam. By Eric Ehrmann and Christopher Barton
Excerpt: Argentina and Brazil disavow their past deals with Saddam…The Gulf war can't shut down the Latin American network Saddam
established to develop terror weapons. During the early 1980s, Saddam assisted military regimes in Argentina, Brazil, and Chile that were
working with German and other European firms to develop advanced weapons technology…Brazil's arms trade with Iraq was designed to offset
the former's huge energy costs; during the 1980s, Saddam provided Brazil with over half its oil needs. In a deal that avoided International Atomic
Energy Agency safeguards, Brazil diverted uranium-enrichment technology it acquired through a 1975 nuclear cooperation treaty with Germany
from its military-run Aramar nuclear center to Iraq. The technology was provided by Interatom, a subsidiary of German electronics giant Siemens.
Key man in the Baghdad-Brazil weapons axis is Hugo Piva, a retired Brazilian air force brigadier. A CalTech Ph.D., Piva operated a consulting firm
that provided scientists and equipment to Saddam's nuclear and guided-missile programs. Piva - the ``Brazilian von Braun'' - also supervised
Brazil's first shipment of yellow cake uranium to Saddam's nuclear program in 1981.
(2013/09/05) [Lawrence] O’Donnell: Reagan let Saddam buy– and use–chemical weapons. By Evan Puschak
Excerpt: O’Donnell cited a 2002 Washington Post article by Michael Dodd that found “the administrations of Ronald Reagan and George H.W.
Bush authorized the sale to Iraq of numerous items that had both military and civilian applications, including poisonous chemicals and deadly
biological viruses, such as anthrax and bubonic plague.” As is widely reported, Hussein used these chemical weapons against Iranians in the Iran-
After the 1991 Gulf War, U.N. inspectors “compiled long lists of chemicals, missile components, and computers from American suppliers,
including such household names as Union Carbide and Honeywell, which were being used for military purposes” in Iraq.
(2002/12/30) U.S. Had Key Role in Iraq Buildup. By Michael Dobbs.
Updates: 2020/05/05-06 a variety of changes underway; the entire section was moved from River Gold; various in-site links might not work
as a result of the transition but are being worked on; 2020/02/09 several pieces were added to this WMD-IRAQ section today: USA, Brazil,
Chinese sections added, with concomitant articles for each section. Several other articles were fleshed out. I earlier had psychic intuition
that indicated WMD might have been ferreted out of the country before the USA invasion of Iraq in March 2003. We perhaps should not
discount the possibility of US-Russian collision in certain parts of the American military (moles, shadow group), although I am not getting
enough on this to suggest for sure, just keep it in back of mind as possibility. Also Reagan’s earlier connection to GE seems fishy, don’t
know if any of it links to this material, but Reagan is mentioned in ODonnell’s article found under the USA section on this page.
Iraq WMD pre-2003