24 September 2002
24 September 2002
9 September 2002
21 August 2002
15 March 2002
year now, double the figure for the year 2000. Self-evidently, there is no proper accounting for this money.
Because of concerns that a containment policy based on sanctions alone could not sufficiently inhibit Saddam’s weapons programme, negotiations continued, even after 1998, to gain readmission for the UN inspectors. In 1999, a new UN resolution demanding their re- entry was passed and ignored. Further negotiations continued. Finally, after several months of discussion with Saddam’s regime, in July this year, Kofi Annan, the UN Secretary-General, concluded that Saddam was not serious about readmitting the inspectors and ended the negotiations.
All this is established fact. I set out the history in some detail because occasionally debate on this issue seems to treat it almost as it if had suddenly arisen, coming out of nowhere on a whim in the last few months of 2002. It is actually an 11- year history: a history of UN will flouted, of lies told by Saddam about the existence of his chemical, biological and nuclear weapons programmes, and of obstruction, defiance and denial.
There is one common, consistent theme, however: the total determination of Saddam to maintain that programme; to risk war, international ostracism, sanctions and the isolation of the Iraqi economy to keep it. At any time, he could have let the inspectors back in and put the world to proof. At any time, he could have co-operated with the United Nations. Ten days ago, he made the offer unconditionally under threat of war. He could have done it at any
Iraqi attempts to retain its existing banned weapons systems: Iraq is already taking steps to prevent UN weapons inspectors finding evidence of its chemical and biological weapons programme. Intelligence indicates that Saddam has learnt lessons from previous weapons inspections, has identified possible weak points in the inspections process and knows how to exploit them. Sensitive equipment and papers can easily be concealed and in some cases this is already happening. The possession of mobile biological agent production facilities will also aid concealment efforts. Saddam is determined not to lose the capabilities that he has been able to develop further in the four years since inspectors left.
Saddam's willingness to use chemical and biological weapons: intelligence indicates that as part of Iraq’s military planning Saddam is willing to use chemical and biological weapons, including against his own Shia population. Intelligence indicates that the Iraqi military are able to deploy chemical or biological weapons within 45 minutes of an order to do so.
Chemical and biological agents: surviving stocks
6. When confronted with questions about the unaccounted stocks, Iraq has claimed repeatedly that if it had retained any chemical agents from before the Gulf War they would have deteriorated sufficiently to render them harmless. But Iraq has admitted to UNSCOM to having the knowledge and capability to add stabiliser to nerve agent and other chemical warfare agents which would prevent such decomposition. In 1997 UNSCOM also examined some munitions which had been filled with mustard gas prior to 1991 and found that they remained very toxic and showed little sign of deterioration.
7. Iraq has claimed that all its biological agents and weapons have been destroyed. No convincing proof of any kind has been produced to support this claim. In particular, Iraq could not explain large discrepancies between the amount of growth media (nutrients required for the specialised growth of agent) it procured before 1991 and the amounts of agent it admits to having manufactured. The discrepancy is enough to produce more than three times the amount of anthrax allegedly manufactured.
Chemical agent: production capabilities
8. Intelligence shows that Iraq has continued to produce chemical agent.
9. Other dual-use facilities, which are capable of being used to support the production of chemical agent and precursors, have been rebuilt and re-equipped. New chemical facilities have been built, some with illegal
resources, including CBW, be used to defend the regime from attack. One report states that Saddam would not use CBW during the initial air phase of any military campaign but would use CBW once a ground invasion of Iraq has begun. Faced with the likelihood of military defeat and being removed from power, we judge that it is unlikely there would be any way to deter Saddam from using CBW.
We judge that several factors could influence the timing of a decision by Saddam to authorise the use of CBW weapons;
the availability of stocks of CW and BW agents; the survivability of his delivery means. Many are vulnerable. Once a military campaign is underway the pressure will increase to use certain assets before they are destroyed; the survivability of command and control mechanisms. The method and timing of such decision making is unknown. Intelligence indicates that Saddam’s son Qusai may already have been given authority to order the use of CBW. Authorising front line units to use chemical and biological weapons could become more difficult once fighting begins. Saddam may therefore specify in advance of a
effective and the means to deliver
another that a team of chemists was formed in 1998 to produce 5
tons of VX. The source was told this them. had been completed by the end of 1998; Incapacitants including the mental incapacitant Agent 15.
Iraq’s military forces used chemical weapons during the Iran-Iraq War. Intelligence indicates command, control and logistical arrangements are in place.
Immediate CBW capability The following chemical agents could be produced within weeks, if not already: Mustard, sarin and VX; The following biological agents could be produced within days, if not already: Anthrax spores, botulinum toxin, aflatoxin and possibly plague These could be delivered by a variety of means, including ballistic missiles and special forces.
Iraq was forced by UNSCOM discoveries and the defection of Hussein Kamil to admit to having had a biological warfare (BW) programme at the time of the Gulf War. BW work continued throughout the period of UNSCOM inspections and intelligence indicates that this programme continues. Key figures from the pre- Gulf War programme are reported to be involved. Research and development is assessed to continue under cover of a number of legitimate institutes and possibly in a number of covert facilities.
We judge that Iraq could produce significant quantities of BW agents within days of a decision to do so. There is no intelligence on any BW agent production facilities, but one source indicates that Iraq may have
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