Antiwar Radio Exclusive: Revealed by Andrew Cockburn April 18, 2007: When Secretary of State Madeline Albright announced, on March 26, 1997, that Iraqi sanctions would stay in place despite the UN inspectors success it was an effort to preempt UN inspection chief Ralf Ekeus’s pending announcement that Iraq was to be certified “free” of “weapons of mass destruction.” (at 22:40)
MP3 here. (40:31)
This, as Cockburn explains, led Saddam to decide there was no further point in allowing the inspectors access to his palaces. (Former UN inspector Scott Ritter has maintained, including to this radio host, that the only purpose for the inspections after 1996 was to allow American spies the opportunity to assassinate Saddam Hussein.) This allowed Bill Clinton to falsely claim that Saddam had kicked them out of the country, launch his “Operation Desert Fox” bombing campaign (on the day the full House of Representatives were to begin debating Articles of Impeachment against him), and for the War Party to claim to this day that there must have been weapons there.
Also: Cockburn and General Anthony Zinni’s belief that the neocons’ plan B after installing Chalabi as dictator fell through was to deliberately destroy Iraq (that is, all this “failure” is on purpose), the suffering of the Iraq people, Rumfeld’s bogus “transformation” of the military and more…
Andrew Cockburn is a writer and lecturer on defense and national affairs, and is also the author of five nonfiction books. He has written for The New York Times, The New Yorker, Playboy, Vanity Fair, and National Geographic, among other publications. He currently lives in Washington, D.C.