November 15, 2005
Arkin Up The Wrong Tree
I've come to expect a certain level of dishonesty from the foreign media regarding the error-riddled white phosphorus "crockumentary" produced by Rai News24, but it is another thing entirely for a writer for a major American news organization based in our nation's capitol to uncritically repeat such "news", as has William M. Arkin in his Washington Post piece, "White Death" Is A Losing Strategy.
The military's use of white phosphorus during operations in Fallujah last year is making its way around the world media and blogosphere, with the claim being that the United States has again shown its inhumane side by using munitions normally reserved for smoke screens and target illumination to terrorize insurgents and kill civilians.
So the United States is "inhumane" when it decides to “terrorize" insurgents? Cry me a river, Mr. Arkin. I can't seem to work up the same amount of sympathy that you can for those that murder unsuspecting civilians on a near daily basis. Note that Mr. Arkin slyly works the language to portray killing civilians as a co-equal goal of the military mission in Fallujah, along with killing or capturing terrorists.
At least you can't accuse Arkin of hiding his biases.
The United States used "chemical" weapons, says the Italian media. A "war crime" says GlobalResearch.ca. "Illegal" and "banned" weapons say others. "White Death" says the African Mathaba.net.
He couldn't find any reputable news sources, but these will work well enough for his purposes... Just don't ask if the claims they make are "credible." They unequivocally are not.
The U.S. government's handling of the allegations has been typically clumsy and confused, fueling the controversy.
Thank the all-but-useless State Department for not being able to clearly state that white phosphorus is not a chemical weapon, and that the military does not intentionally target any civilians with any of our weapons. Even a blind hog will find an acorn every once in a while.
But what is most interesting here is why the Army chose to use white phosphorus as a terror and anti-personnel weapon, and why critics insist on labeling it "illegal" without ever recognizing the contradiction in their argument. Because the fight over white phosphorous has become so heated, it is likely that the military will stand firm behind its present policy and the commanders won't be held accountable.
Again, Arkin proves no compelling evidence at all that white phosphorus was used against civilians, nor can he justify his choice of calling a munition that has been in the conventional military arsenal of the majority of our allies and enemies, a "terror" weapon. It is an intentional misuse of language by Arkin, and a craven act. In addition, Army Field Manual (FM 3-6) states:
The purposes of incendiaries are to cause maximum fire damage on flammable materials and objects and to illuminate. Incendiary materials used include gasoline, gels, burning metals, incendiary mixes, and white phosphorus.
To be effective, incendiary munitions should be used against targets susceptible to fire or heat damage. A considerable part of the target must be flammable, so the fire can spread.
It might be another scientific shock to Arkin, but human bodies, made primarily of water, are not considered flammable by the military, and therefore, are not thought of as anti-personnel weapons.
It is also interesting that Arkin wants military commanders to be "held accountable" when he cannot even provide evidence that they did anything wrong, unless, perhaps, in Arkin's opinion it is simply criminal enough to be in the military while President Bush is in office.
Skipping down a few paragraphs we find:
The documentary shows close-ups of Fallujah civilians, badly burnt, their skin dissolved or caramelized. An Iraqi biologist in Fallujah is interviewed, saying, "a rain of fire fell on the city," burning people's flesh, but strangely leaving "their clothes intact."
This is sheer conjecture, by a highly-biased and suspect source, presented as fact.
Watch the crockumentary and you will see many bodies—well, not many actually, though they repeat then again and again to make it appear there are more than their actually are. Some are clearly wearing military load-bearing equipment as you would inspect an insurgent might, Many of the other dead and wounded, in fact the majority, appear to be military-aged men. As the insurgents are not in the habit of wearing uniforms, it is quite a stretch for the Italian documentary makers to claim these were civilians.
Further, Arkin does not have any basis for claiming that the state of the bodies had anything to do with specific weaponry without an autopsy performed by a trained pathologist, preferably one with military experience. The bodies in the video most often appear to be in advanced stages of decomposition, not suffering from burns, unless the easily observable maggots on some of these bodies were present before the people died.
And while some may consider it a minor point, it would also make sense to mention that the Iraqi biologist in question has been accused of being a supporter of the insurgency... if one was trying to be objective, that is.
Arkin also misses the large, obvious lie embedded in this segment: white phosphorus, which burns hot enough to melt light steel and iron, would most certainly burn through cloth. This is not up for debate, Mr. Arkin. It is a scientific fact.
The fact that the clothes are intact on the bodies shown is strong evidence towards disproving white phosphorus as being the cause of death. But don't believe me, Mr. Arkin, call a local university chemistry department.
Obviously, fact checking is not on Arkin's agenda, it gets in the way of his message.
A year ago, Arab media was filled with reporting that the United States also used napalm and incendiary weapons in Fallujah. Islam Online, a Qatar-based website, reported that U.S. forces used "chemical weapons and poisonous gas." According to the State Department, the claim was soon "posted on hundreds of Web sites." Even the UK Sunday Mirror carried reporting that the U.S. was "secretly using outlawed napalm" in Fallujah
He has no evidence, but once again more unsupported insinuation seems to be enough for him. Arkin refuses to do the minimal legwork it would require to find out if any Mark 77s were expended in Fallujah during the assault. They were no known sightings of the massive fireballs characteristic of such weapons, cited by so much as a single credible source. Not one.
The Pentagon categorically denied the use of any chemical weapons, but the U.S. government did admit that the Marines had used napalm-like incendiary weapons during the march to Baghdad in 2003, and the admission became conflated with the denial.
The U.S. further painted itself into a corner arguing that although it had removed its last napalm bombs from its arsenal in 2001, "napalm or napalm-like incendiary weapons are not outlawed."
He doesn't have any evidence, but he'll still insinuate his predetermined storyline. Damn the facts, full speed ahead!
Finally, the U.S. said that phosphorous was used only "very sparingly in Fallujah, for illumination purposes. They were fired into the air to illuminate enemy positions at night, not at enemy fighters."
That was from the State Department, which can't figure which end of a gun to point, and should never have been involved in this conversation.
Arkin then goes on to repeat this partial story, the he finds (not surprisingly) on a far left wing blog:
A year later, after the Italian documentary, the U.S. was again denying, but this time there was no denying that the claims about the use of white phosphorous appeared valid. Dailykos reported that the March 2005 edition (pdf) of the Army's official Field Artillery Magazine contained an article -- "The Fight for Fallujah" -- by three Army artillerymen that said:
"We used it [white phosphorous] for screening missions at two breeches and, later in the fight, as a potent psychological weapon against the insurgents in trench lines and spider holes when we could not get effects on them with HE [high explosives]. We fired “shake and bake” missions at the insurgents, using WP to flush them out and HE to take them out."
First, American military forces never claimed (to the best I can determine) that we did not use white phosphorus in the battle for Fallujah. White phosphorus was primarily used as a screening agent, a luminary, and as an anti-material weapon, as doctrine indicated. The "shake and bake" missions were a perfect example of this doctrine, and worked only because the insurgents know that white phosphorus is typically employed as a screening agent.
As the article stated, white phosphorus was used for screening mission so American forces could advance during the battle. The "shake and bake" mission were a "potent psychological weapon" because WP dropped upon their position made them fear they were about to be the immediate victims of an overrun attack by United States Marines. Marine forces were better armed, better armored, and better trained than their opponents, and the insurgents knew this. They tried to fall back to a more defensible position, but were mowed down by high explosive (HE) shells during their retreat. White phosphorus shook them, and HE cooked their respective gooses.
It is also interesting that rkin and his friends at Daily Kos couldn't seem to find this information in the Field Artillery Magazine article:
...TF 2-2 IN encountered few civilians in its attack south.
How willful do you think that omission was?
After skipping a few paragraphs, we find Arkin blathering on:
I for one am reluctant to pronounce whether the use of white phosphorous for "shake and bake" missions in Fallujah and the evident blundering use of white phosphorous in areas known to be occupied by civilians is illegal.
You shouldn't be reluctant at all. Civilians were given almost a week to evacuate by U.S. forces in the most telegraphed offensive of the war. It was well known that Fallujah was going to become a major urban battleground. The insurgents chose to heavily militarize an urban environment, and by giving civilians plenty of time and advance warning to evacuate the city, the military has every right to claim that Fallujah was an urban battleground ,but that it was not a battleground expected to contain civilians. The Army soldiers Arkin so eagerly quotes above prove that, in fact, civilian contact was rare.
Neither am I buying the State Department's line that the use of white phosphorous in this way -- that is, to possibly inflict unnecessary suffering -- is not "illegal" use. What I'm sure of is that the use of white phosphorous is not just some insensitive act. It is not just bad P.R. It is the ill thought out and panicked use of a weapon in an illegitimate way. It is a representation of a losing strategy.
Tell me, Mr. Arkin, what do you consider necessary suffering? The suffering of American soldiers, perhaps? Or perhaps better yet, can you indicate a single weapon that has not inflicted, by your definition, "unnecessary suffering."
White phosphorus used in Fallujah was not "ill thought out and panicked" as Arkin ignorantly describes, but is part of a well thought out, carefully crafted and well-practiced doctrine that has evolved over many decades of theoretical and practical use. Every credible source indicates that white phosphorous was used exactly in the ways U.S. military doctrine stipulates during the battle of Fallujah.
There is indeed bad PR being spread, but it is Mr. Arkin and his ilk spreading it.
Other posts on the White Phosphorus crockumentary:
Popham, Meet Sites
Ablution Exclusive: Weapons Expert Challenges White Phosphorus Claims
Crow. The Other White Meat
Be Careful What You Wish For
Rai's White Phosphorus Fraud
The WP Controversy
Yet More WP
Update: Jeff Goldstein joins the fray as well.
Posted by Confederate Yankee at November 15, 2005 05:26 PM
Well done with substantiated and verifiable material!
You get an Amen! from this old soldier!
If you are a leftist, you can ignore any fact that gets in the way of a higher truth.
I like white phosphorus, napalm, gas bombs, daisy cutters, nuclear subs and stuff such as that. Our enemies need to remember that we can blow them to smithereens much worse on all levels than any of their murder bombers. That is what this columnist misses completely, that we are at a war, not a party.
Damn straight! We are at a war we created to overthrow a country which was doing absolutely nothing wrong at the time. The UN disagreed - oh, remember how the US criticises other countries who carry out an act w/o UN approval?
Anyhow, we, the GD US of A own this unholy earth and by God we have the right to bomb, incinerate and fornicate against any country that pisses our GOP off. Because God is on our side - same God we don't allow in our schools and government?
These colors don't run - they kill!
Honestly, I read this and just gave a yell. I can't believe they're pushing this slime in our own newspapers! Al Jazeera, yes, Daily Kos, yes, THE WASHINGTON POST? ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
And then you read the comments...
Jim Bob, are you advocating to return God to our schools and government? It just doesn't sound in character considering the rest of your comment.
A few things:
the state department has a long and glorious history of misstating defense department matters. That is why I called this quote in the documentary into question in my debunking of the fakeumentary at:
I do not believe they do this on purpose, but because most of the "statees" have no military background.
The other point, the fakeumentary shows (whether from fallujah or not) scenes of illumination rounds falling under parachutes (harmless) and WP for smoke being deployed in an airburst that is not over any type of structure. This is to screen movement. Why smoke at night? Night Vision technology is becoming cheaper and it is very plausible that the enemy had them. And they have surely gotten NVGs off the battlefield. Don't confuse this with thearmal imaging which can see through smoke. Also, good binoculars can be used to improve night vision, as I found out during Desert Storm. And WP smoke can be put on the enemy to confuse and scare them, it has very low probability of a kill. They had much better weapons to kill with then WP.
There is no mysterious chemical cloud that burns!!!! Burns occur from contact with the flame. The smoke is harmless. If you set up a laboratory experiment, you could possibly set up the conditions to kill with WP smoke, but there is near zero probability in practical use.
The cloths would burn. Soldiers would have MOPP gear. Good enough talking points?
Pathophysiology: White phosphorus results in painful chemical burn injuries. The resultant burn typically appears as a necrotic area with a yellowish color and characteristic garliclike odor. White phosphorus is highly lipid soluble and as such, is believed to have rapid dermal penetration once particles are embedded under the skin. Because of its enhanced lipid solubility, many have believed that these injuries result in delayed wound healing. This has not been well studied; therefore, all that can be stated is that white phosphorus burns represent a small subsegment of chemical burns, all of which typically result in delayed wound healing.
Few studies have investigated the degree of tissue destruction associated with white phosphorus injuries. In the experimental animal model, most tissue destruction appears to be secondary to the heat generated by oxidation.
Systemic toxicity has been described extensively in the animal model. Pathologic changes have been documented in the liver and kidney. These changes result in the development of progressive anuria, decreased creatinine clearance, and increased blood phosphorus levels. Depression of serum calcium with an elevation in the serum phosphorus level (reversed calcium-phosphorus ratio) with electrocardiographic changes including prolongation of the QT segment, ST segment depression, T wave changes, and bradycardia also have been observed. Oral ingestion of white phosphorus in humans has been demonstrated to result in pathologic changes to the liver and kidneys. The accepted lethal dose is 1 mg/kg, although the ingestion of as little as 15 mg has resulted in death. Individuals with a history of oral ingestion have been noted to pass phosphorus-laden stool ("smoking stool syndrome").
"...Phosphorus burns on the skin are deep and painful; a firm eschar is produced and is surrounded by vesiculation. The burns usually are multiple, deep, and variable in size. The solid in the eye produces severe injury. The particles continue to burn unless deprived of atmospheric oxygen. Contact with these particles can cause local burns. These weapons are particularly nasty because white phosphorus continues to burn until it disappears. If service members are hit by pieces of white phosphorus, it could burn right down to the bone. Burns usually are limited to areas of exposed skin (upper extremities, face). Burns frequently are second and third degree because of the rapid ignition and highly lipophilic properties of white phosphorus.
If burning particles of WP strike and stick to the clothing, take off the contaminated clothing quickly before the WP burns through to the skin. Remove quickly all clothing affected by phosphorus to prevent phosphorus burning through to skin..."
Accordingly, the fact that exposed areas of the bodies skin (face and hands) are burned but the clothes are (at least partially) intact seems to be consistent with massive use WP burning in air with many left burning particles hitting the ground at a later time. The combined effects of this burning powder and of the highly hygroscopic and corrosive oxide dust could indeed be the cause of the injuries on the bodies reported on 9 November by RAI.
Any tool that causes the most casualties to the enemy with the least danger to our troops is the tool for the job.
No one bitched when we dropped 15,000 pound fuel bunkerbusters on Tora Bora.
"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."
George S. Patton
Proud father of an American Soldier
The US wasn't forced into war - you started it - unprovoked claiming the enemy had weapons of mass destructions. Yet, they didn't and although you claim to be the loving democracy your army has no problem using weapons of mass destruction. If Iraq used WP agains't the American army then the US would say, "Smoking gun", see they are bad and deserve to die.
Glad you are proud of your son - you should be. Yet, maybe you should start questioning the government that runs your country and armies.
You provide evidence to make your case...but the context and knowledge of the U.S. military application is important.
"Systemic toxicity has been described extensively in the animal model." This paragraph refers to the ingestion of WP as evidenced by “Oral ingestion of white phosphorus in humans has been demonstrated to result in pathologic changes to the liver and kidneys.” While this is certainly possible that it occurred on the battlefield, there is no evidence presented in the documentary. There are no toxicology reports from legitimate sources (that I am aware of) to make the case that this happened to any civilian, much less on the scale stated by the fakeumentary. The video itself shows WP being deployed in open empty terrain, evidence to the contrary of what the fakeumentary claims.
Also, the U.S. Army M825 uses WP embedded felt wedges. The specific purpose of this embedding is to keep the chemical contained to the wedge vs. being dispersed into the air in a mist. Granted some would come off, but very little and I would argue not enough to create the conditions you cite other than the presence of epidermal burning and worse case subcutaneous, but not ingested in quantities indicated for lethal dose and certainly not enough to form a corrosive cloud.
Also you state:
“the fact that exposed areas of the bodies skin (face and hands) are burned but the clothes are (at least partially) intact seems to be consistent with massive use WP burning in air with many left burning particles hitting the ground at a later time.”
I think this is directly at odds with your reference: pathophysiology.
“If burning particles of WP strike and stick to the clothing, take off the contaminated clothing quickly before the WP burns through to the skin.”
I also think it is at odds with your reference again:
“In the experimental animal model, most tissue destruction appears to be secondary to the heat generated by oxidation.”
This means oxidation causes the injury. Oxidation is a fancy word for fire, not chemical corrosion.
I also conclude that you indicate this would require massive amounts of WP in the air to burn. There is zero indication that this occurred in Fallujah as the evidence is provided in this fakeumentary. Or can you rule out that the bodies that appear burned are possibly due to exposure, explosions, or non WP related fire? If so, I would like to hear it. thanks
Saddamm Hussein used WMDs at least eleven times that we are aware of. 1.8 tons of low-enriched uranium and roghly other 1000 radiological elements were captured after the fall of Baghdad, and are now in safekeeping in the United States. IEDs containing Sarin and Mustard gas were used against U.S. forces in May, 2004.
There was ZERO question that Saddam Hussein's Iraq had WMDs and had used them; the question was, and still is, "what happened to the WMDs Saddam declared he had at the end of the 1991 Gulf War?"
Iraq was home ot four known terrorist organizations, and Baghdad was home to Abu Nidal and Abu Abbas, perhaps the two most famous terrorists in the world prior to Osama bin Laden, and Abdul Rahman Yasin, the bomb-builder in the 1993 World Trade Center attack, was also a guest of Saddam Hussein.
White phosphorus is a conventional weapon that is, to the best of my knowledge, issued and used by every member of NATO.
Your ignorance of what WP is doesn't make it a chemical weapon.
Yet, they didn't and although you claim to be the loving democracy your army has no problem using weapons of mass destruction
Wow, Exposed Idiot you have no idea what you are talking about. Here's a clue: when the exalted U.N. Weapons Inspectors were looking for WMDs, WP wasn't on their list.
It absolutely astounds me that in the face of overwhelming facts, some folks continue to espouse WP is a WMD. These people are purely ignorant of the weapon and its doctrinal uses, yet they cling tightly to their erroneous perception that our military is guilty of yet another atrocity. It would be humorous if it wasn't so pathetic. These are people who obviously have no military experience or any intent to even support our brave military people. I just cannot believe they totally discount the testimony of subject matter experts. Obviously their agenda trumps facts.
To Jordan - . . .and prior to 9/11 an airplane was just a source of travel.
To Yankee - the 1.8 tons of uranium and radiological elements captured by the US were being used by Iraq for what?
To Yankee - The IEDs you mentioned - I believe plural was wrong and singular IED was right. Certainly a remnant or two from the past hardly supports a claim that Iraq is a threat to the US by stockpiling WMDs.
To Yankee - There absolutely is NO question that Sadam HAD WMD. Hum, were did he get the weapons?, hum, I think I remember reading the ole USA. Good job guys!!! Guess it was okay back then to use them against Iran, but lordy don't use them against the US.
To Yankee - Lastly, the US is home to alot of bad people too. Maybe China should attack the US?
Hey, odd that no one denied "The US wasn't forced into war - you started it"
Exposed, you remember wrong. The US did not supply Iraq with WMD.
Ah, you so wrong Lugo.
"Even before Iraq released its weapons-program dossier on 7 December 2002, it was said that the report would name the corporations that supplied Iraq with the equipment and other material it needed to develop biological, chemical, and nuclear weapons. Soon after the report was released, those suspicions were confirmed. Sources who had seen the report said that it identified suppliers from the US, UK, Germany, France, China, and elsewhere."
See - http://www.thememoryhole.org/corp/iraq-suppliers.htm
or - http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,861902,00.html
And what, praytell, did Americans provide, ED?
Sarin? Flamethrowers? Gas chambers from Sears?
I'm just dying to find out.
To Jordan - . . .and prior to 9/11 an airplane was just a source of travel.
What are you babbling about? WP has never been classified as a WMD.
Did I miss something? Did you really just quote a report from Iraq, Saddam Hussein, to implicate the U.S.. Please guys, tell me I didn't just see that. I am too depressed by that. I'm going home.
exposed , you are wrong in your assumption that U.S started the war.
The 1991 Gulf War started with the Iraqi army invading Kuwait and ended in a ceasefire agreement between the Coalition forces and Iraq, the terms of which Saddam's goverment repeatedly broke; after 14 or so innefective UN resolutions and 9/11 President Bush's new foreign policy was basically 'no more screwing around', fair enough imo.
Saddam continued to screw around. The UN continued to screw around. The MSM continues to screw around!! :)
So, who started it? yah, twas Saddam Hussein...
You people think I am crazy for calling WP a chemical weapon - Well, your own damn leaders think it is!!! Americans are soooo freaken dumb and arrogant!
Total Pages: 1
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RUEHAK/USDAO ANKARA TU
SECTION 001 OF 002
SERIAL: (U) IIR 2 243 1050 91
/*********** THIS IS A COMBINED MESSAGE ************/
BODY PASS: (U) DIA FOR ITF/JIC/OICC/; DA FOR DAMI-FII-E
COUNTRY: (U) IRAQ (IZ); TURKEY (TU); IRAN (IR).
SUBJ: IIR 2 243 1050 91/POSSIBLE USE OF PHOSPHOROUS CHEMICAL
WEAPONS BY IRAQ IN KURDISH AREAS ALONG THE IRAQI-TURKISH-IRANIAN
BORDERS; AND CURRENT SITUATION OF KURDISH RESISTANCE AND REFUGEES
WARNING: (U) THIS IS AN INFORMATION REPORT, NOT FINALLY EVALUATED
INTELLIGENCE. REPORT CLASSIFIED
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
DOI: (U) 910300.
REQS: (U) T-8C2-2650-01-90.
SOURCE: [ (b)(1) sec 1.3(a)(4) ][ (b)(7)(D) ]
SUMMARY: IRAQ HAS POSSIBLY EMPLOYED PHOSPHOROUS
WEAPONS AGAINST THE KURDISH POPULATION IN AREAS ALONG THE
IRAQI-TURKISH-IRANIAN BORDERS. KURDISH RESISTANCE IS LOSING ITS
STRUGGLE AGAINST SADDAM HUSSEIN'S FORCES. KURDISH REBELS AND
REFUGEES' PERSONAL OBSERVATIONS AND PERCEPTIONS ARE PROVIDED.
TEXT: 1. DURING APRIL 1991, THE SOURCE TELEPHONED
BROTHER (SUBSOURCE) [ (b)(1) sec 1.3(a)(4) ][ (b)(7)(D) ]
. DURING THIS PHONE CONVERSATION,
THE SOURCE WAS ABLE TO OBTAIN THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION ON THE
PRESENT SITUATION IN KURDISH AREAS ALONG THE IRAQI-TURKISH-IRANIAN
A. IRAQ'S POSSIBLE EMPLOYMENT OF PHOSPHOROUS CHEMICAL
WEAPONS -- IN LATE FEBRUARY 1991, FOLLOWING THE COALITION FORCES'
OVERWHELMING VICTORY OVER IRAQ, KURDISH REBELS STEPPED UP THEIR
STRUGGLE AGAINST IRAQI FORCES IN NORTHERN IRAQ. DURING THE BRUTAL
CRACKDOWN THAT FOLLOWED THE KURDISH UPRISING, IRAQI FORCES LOYAL
PRESIDENT SADDAM ((HUSSEIN)) MAY HAVE POSSIBLY USED WHITE
PHOSPHOROUS (WP) CHEMICAL WEAPONS AGAINST KURDISH REBELS AND THE
POPULACE IN ERBIL (GEOCOORD:3412N/04401E) (VICINITY OF IRANIAN
BORDER) AND DOHUK (GEOCOORD:3652N/04301E) (VICINITY OF IRAQI
BORDER) PROVINCES, IRAQ. THE WP CHEMICAL WAS DELIVERED BY
ARTILLERY ROUNDS AND HELICOPTER GUNSHIPS (NO FURTHER INFORMATION
THIS TIME). APPARENTLY, THIS TIME IRAQ DID NOT USE NERVE GAS AS
THEY DID IN 1988, IN HALABJA (GEOCOORD:3511N/04559E), IRAQ,
THEY WERE AFRAID OF POSSIBLE RETALIATION FROM THE UNITED STATES
(U.S.) LED COALITION. THESE REPORTS OF POSSIBLE WP CHEMICAL WEAPON
ATTACKS SPREAD QUICKLY AMONG THE KURDISH POPULACE IN ERBIL AND
DOHUK. AS A RESULT, HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF KURDS FLED FROM THESE
TWO AREAS AND CROSSED THE IRAQI BORDER INTO TURKEY. IN RESPONSE TO
THIS, TURKISH AUTHORITIES ESTABLISHED SEVERAL REFUGEE CENTERS
THE TURKISH-IRAQI BORDER. THE SITUATION OF KURDISH REFUGEES IN
THESE CENTERS IS DESPERATE -- THEY HAVE NO SHELTERS, FOOD, WATER,
AND MEDICAL FACILITIES (NO FURTHER INFORMATION AT THIS TIME).
B. IRAQI GOVERNMENT ULTIMATUM TO KURDS REBELS AND
REFUGEES -- ON OR AROUND 2 APRIL 1991, RADIO BAGHDAD ISSUED AN
ULTIMATUM TO THE KURDISH REBELS AND REFUGEES WHO FLED IRAQ AND
SETTLED IN REFUGEE CENTERS IN TURKEY. IN THE BROADCAST, IRAQI
AUTHORITIES WARNED THE KURDS THEY HAD 10 DAYS TO RETURN TO THEIR
TOWNS AND VILLAGES, OR ELSE FACE COMPLETE ANNIHILATION. THE IRAQI
BROADCAST ALSO PROMISED THE KURDS THAT NO RETALIATORY ACTION WOULD
BE TAKEN AGAINST THEM IF THEY WOULD COMPLY WITH THIS ORDER (NO
FURTHER INFORMATION AT THIS TIME).
C. KURDISH REBELS ARE LOSING IN THEIR STRUGGLE AGAINST
SADDAM HUSSEIN'S FORCES -- KURDISH REBELS WHO WERE FIGHTING IN
NORTHERN IRAQ WERE FORCED TO WITHDRAW INTO TURKEY BY TROOPS LOYAL
TO SADDAM HUSSEIN. POOR ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP AND LACK OF
HEAVY WEAPONS, AMMUNITION, AND SUPPLIES ARE THE PRIMARY CAUSES OF
KURDISH LATEST DOWNFALL. THE ONLY GROUP CURRENTLY FIGHTING SADDAM
HUSSEIN'S FORCES IN NORTHERN IRAQ IS THE "PESHMERGEH" (FRONT
WARRIORS). HOWEVER, THIS GROUP IS ARMED ONLY WITH SMALL ARMS SUCH
AS M-60 MACHINE-GUNS, AK-47 RIFLES AND UNKNOWN TYPES OF PISTOLS
D. KURDISH REBELS' EXPECTATION OF RECEIVING HELP FROM
U.S. LED COALITION FORCE -- THE KURDISH RESISTANCE'S DECISION TO
RISE UP AND FIGHT HUSSEIN'S FORCES WAS TRIGGERED BY THE
OVERWHELMING MILITARY POWER DISPLAYED BY THE COALITION DURING
"DESERT STORM" AND THE PROPAGANDA BROADCASTS OF VOICE OF AMERICA.
KURDISH REBELS AND REFUGEES REALLY BELIEVED THAT EVENTUALLY THE
COALITION FORCE WOULD COME TO HELP THEM IN THEIR FIGHTING AGAINST
IRAQI FORCES. AFTER LEARNING OF U.S. PRESIDENT BUSH'S "STAY OUT OF
IRAQ INTERNAL AFFAIRS" POLICY, KURDISH REBELS AND REFUGEES FELT AS
THEY WERE SET UP AND LET DOWN BY THE COALITION FORCE (NO FURTHER
INFORMATION AT THIS TIME).
E. SADDAM HUSSEIN'S REASON NOT TO USE CHEMICAL WEAPONS
AGAINST THE U.S. LED COALITION FORCE DURING "DESERT STORM" -- THE
GENERAL PERCEPTION AMONG THE KURDS IS THAT PRESIDENT HUSSEIN DID
NOT USE CHEMICAL WEAPONS AGAINST THE COALITION BECAUSE HE WAS
AFRAID THAT ALLIES WOULD RETALIATE BY USING BATTLEFIELD NUCLEAR
WEAPONS (NO FURTHER INFORMATION AT THIS TIME).
COMMENTS: 1. (SOURCE COMMENT) - IRAQ USED WP IN ERBIL
AND DOHUK BECAUSE THEY WANTED THE KURDS TO PANIC AND FLEE FROM THE
2. [ (b)(1) sec 1.3(a)(4) ][ (b)(7)(D) ]
3. (SOURCE COMMENT) - MOST OF THE SMUGGLING OF REFUGEES
ALONG THE IRAQI-TURKISH-IRANIAN BORDERS OCCURRED AT NIGHT.
4. (FIELD COMMENT) - ACCORDING TO THE TIMES' WORLD
ATLAS, THE TWO IRAQI PROVINCES ERBIL AND DOHUK ARE ALSO CALLED
ARBIL AND DIHOK RESPECTIVELY.
//IPSP: (U) PGW 2650//.
//COMSOBJ: (U) 211//.
ADMIN PROJ: (U) 252132.
INSTR: (U) US NO.
PREP: (U) 500TH MI BDE.
ACQ: (U) TOKYO, JAPAN (910409).
DISSEM: (U) FIELD: NONE.
WARNING: (U) REPORT CLASSIFIED
E.D., you are so far behind the mental curve on this I can't even see your headlights. This was completely debunked before breakfast yesterday:
Think Progress has already been throughly humiliated over this, as their "secret Pentagon evidence" is nothing more than the transripts of a phone call between two Kurdish brothers.
Apparently critical reading is not one of those skills you picked up at cut 'n paste school.
James Bond you ain't.