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Question about Iraq and declaring war.

blackangst1

Lifer
Feb 23, 2005
20,595
745
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I just finished Rumsfeld's book (which was quite good) and in one part he explained WMD stories aside, the US had plenty of reasons and opportunities to officially declare war (via congress) with Iraq, including our planes getting shot at while enforcing no fly zones. So it got me thinking. AFAIK Iraq is the only country we've actually invaded without an invite, and without a declaration of war. Of course many here and scholars have said Bush et al should be brought up on international war crimes (what charges I'll never know) and it got me thinking more.

Given everything thats happened, what would have been different *if* we had actually declared war on Iraq? And how were we able to invade a country, take down its government, and put in our own WITHOUT breaking international law? And finally, if we DID actually break international law, how did we escape charges? (Im guessing for the last question its because we ARE the UN financially thus it would be a case of chopping off the hand that feeds you).

I would ask we keep this relatively sterile, and leave out the partisan hackery. If possible.
 

MrColin

Platinum Member
May 21, 2003
2,403
3
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Its not the first time the US has done that. (take down and replace the gov't of another nation). It may not even be the 10th time.
 

Lemon law

Lifer
Nov 6, 2005
20,991
2
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Aside from my Partisan hackery about Donald Dumsfeld, as the dumbest sec of defense in US history and a serial liar to boot, maybe we will find Leon Pinhead will prove to be even dumber.

But still in a non-partisan fashion, we can ask what we in the USA won in the dual quarmires Donald Dumsfeld and the GWB&co merry band of neocons started. Against what can be argued were the two weakest paper tiger militaries in the world.

As there are maybe two lessons to be learned here.

1. The US military is hands down the most powerful military in the world. As they did an excellent job of conquering two weak countries in jig time.

2. As we also leaned having the most powerful military in the world is not worth a warm pitcher of spit if our politicians lack the brains and ability to win the peace. And convert former enemies into future allies. Basically the post 1955 story of the USA in Vietnam, the Russians in Afghanistan, the USA in Afghanistan, and now the USA in Iraq.

But now the stakes are far higher in Iran, who is a real deal defensive power who has already proved they will fight to the death to perserve their independence.

As US foreign policy has been back firing badly ever since Iran gave the ole heave ho the US puppet the Shah of Iran. Back in the heady days of 1950, the Western powers controlled Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Iraq, as at the time, those three nations could more than meet all the combined world demand. Then when Iran rebelled in 1979, the western powers were down to only Iraq and Saudi Arabia. As Ronald Reagan dispatched Donald Rumsfeld to Iraq and whispered sweet nothings in to Saddams ears to try to get Iran back into Western control. As that back fired badly, not only did Iran barely survive, the US was pissed when Saddam started double dealing with the Russians. End result, now instead of having three big mid-east oil producing nations in the Western Harem, we ended up losing Iraq too. And now we are down to only Saudi Arabia, and if the USA persists in mid-east stupidity we will lose Saudi Arabia too.
 

Farang

Lifer
Jul 7, 2003
10,921
3
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We never declared war on Vietnam. AFAIK we haven't since WWII, despite bombing dozens of countries
 

Hayabusa Rider

Admin Emeritus & Elite Member
Jan 26, 2000
50,880
4,212
126
I just finished Rumsfeld's book (which was quite good) and in one part he explained WMD stories aside, the US had plenty of reasons and opportunities to officially declare war (via congress) with Iraq, including our planes getting shot at while enforcing no fly zones. So it got me thinking. AFAIK Iraq is the only country we've actually invaded without an invite, and without a declaration of war. Of course many here and scholars have said Bush et al should be brought up on international war crimes (what charges I'll never know) and it got me thinking more.
I think the better perspective is that the US had plenty of excuses which is what Iraq came down to being. How many of those planes actually went down? Did we really expect no response whatsoever?

Now "invite" is an interesting concept. Vietnam? We decided we were going in and all be damned.

The problem with the "scholars" is that there is no real basis for "war crimes". If the leaders of other nations were held to the same standard as Bush half the countries would be leaderless. What needed to happen is that when the Dems took over that an investigation be launched. Obama won in large part to Bush's military actions, and then both Obama and his party pretended as if nothing ever happened besides a few words. The outrage was a sham to get Obama and the Dems in office. They never intended to investigate and if we aren't interested then no one else is either.

As far as how things would have been different? That depends on if Bush could have gotten an official declaration, which you'll note hasn't happened in a very long time. Chances are Bush would have gone in anyway, but after that? The Dems would have cried crocodile tears and the Reps would have backed him like the good partisans they were. One could hope that if Bush suddenly cared that the standard for war would have been higher, but it was always politics.
 

Hayabusa Rider

Admin Emeritus & Elite Member
Jan 26, 2000
50,880
4,212
126
But now the stakes are far higher in Iran, who is a real deal defensive power who has already proved they will fight to the death to perserve their independence.
Of course we have no intentions of taking Iran away from the Iranians, but as Obama said today there are limits on just what the west will endure. We don't have to set a boot on the ground in Iran.
 

blackangst1

Lifer
Feb 23, 2005
20,595
745
126
Aside from my Partisan hackery about Donald Dumsfeld, as the dumbest sec of defense in US history and a serial liar to boot, maybe we will find Leon Pinhead will prove to be even dumber.

But still in a non-partisan fashion, we can ask what we in the USA won in the dual quarmires Donald Dumsfeld and the GWB&co merry band of neocons started. Against what can be argued were the two weakest paper tiger militaries in the world.

As there are maybe two lessons to be learned here.

1. The US military is hands down the most powerful military in the world. As they did an excellent job of conquering two weak countries in jig time.

2. As we also leaned having the most powerful military in the world is not worth a warm pitcher of spit if our politicians lack the brains and ability to win the peace. And convert former enemies into future allies. Basically the post 1955 story of the USA in Vietnam, the Russians in Afghanistan, the USA in Afghanistan, and now the USA in Iraq.

But now the stakes are far higher in Iran, who is a real deal defensive power who has already proved they will fight to the death to perserve their independence.

As US foreign policy has been back firing badly ever since Iran gave the ole heave ho the US puppet the Shah of Iran. Back in the heady days of 1950, the Western powers controlled Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Iraq, as at the time, those three nations could more than meet all the combined world demand. Then when Iran rebelled in 1979, the western powers were down to only Iraq and Saudi Arabia. As Ronald Reagan dispatched Donald Rumsfeld to Iraq and whispered sweet nothings in to Saddams ears to try to get Iran back into Western control. As that back fired badly, not only did Iran barely survive, the US was pissed when Saddam started double dealing with the Russians. End result, now instead of having three big mid-east oil producing nations in the Western Harem, we ended up losing Iraq too. And now we are down to only Saudi Arabia, and if the USA persists in mid-east stupidity we will lose Saudi Arabia too.
Please dont thread crap. You didnt address anything I asked.
 

blackangst1

Lifer
Feb 23, 2005
20,595
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We never declared war on Vietnam. AFAIK we haven't since WWII, despite bombing dozens of countries
Correct. But we were "invited" by the S Vietnamese after signing an economic aid treaty, followed by the passage of the Tonkin Gulf resolution by the senate. My question specifically says I believe Iraq was the first time the US invaded and overthrew a govt without an invitation or provocation of war.
 

blackangst1

Lifer
Feb 23, 2005
20,595
745
126
I think the better perspective is that the US had plenty of excuses which is what Iraq came down to being. How many of those planes actually went down? Did we really expect no response whatsoever?

Now "invite" is an interesting concept. Vietnam? We decided we were going in and all be damned.
AFAIK we went in after signing an aid treaty with S Vietnam, thus the invite was made for support.

The problem with the "scholars" is that there is no real basis for "war crimes". If the leaders of other nations were held to the same standard as Bush half the countries would be leaderless. What needed to happen is that when the Dems took over that an investigation be launched. Obama won in large part to Bush's military actions, and then both Obama and his party pretended as if nothing ever happened besides a few words. The outrage was a sham to get Obama and the Dems in office. They never intended to investigate and if we aren't interested then no one else is either.
Agree.

As far as how things would have been different? That depends on if Bush could have gotten an official declaration, which you'll note hasn't happened in a very long time. Chances are Bush would have gone in anyway, but after that? The Dems would have cried crocodile tears and the Reps would have backed him like the good partisans they were. One could hope that if Bush suddenly cared that the standard for war would have been higher, but it was always politics.
Yes I understand a declaration of war hasnt been given since I believe WW2. But Im curious would might have been, or could have been, different. Different international rules maybe? Not as much leniency? I dont know.
 

Lemon law

Lifer
Nov 6, 2005
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2
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As Hayabusa says, "Of course we have no intentions of taking Iran away from the Iranians, but as Obama said today there are limits on just what the west will endure. We don't have to set a boot on the ground in Iran."

As pardon me and in all due respects Hayabusa, that has to be the most stupid statement I ever heard. Even if the USA tries to nuke Iran and try to make it into glass no man's land, enough Iranians will be left to shut down the Persian gulf for a very long time. Even a month would be enough to throw every oil dependent nation on earth into a economic depression.

And please don't don't try to sell us the Leon Pinhead fantasy that what ever remains of Iran would sail out in this set piece battle against US Navy warships and be destroyed. The US Navy can defend itself by in large, when the issue is, can they defend defenseless vulnerable oil tankers without US military boots on the ground to prevent it.

Not to mention the fact, the very second the first US or Israel bomb falls on Iran, Iranian missiles would render every enemy's oil filling facilities into blazing wrecks.

If so attacked we in the USA have a history of extracting our revenge, what gives you the idea haybasusa Iran won't do the same.

As JediY maintains, those are some mighty powerful Mushrooms you must be smoking Haybasusa.
 

Farang

Lifer
Jul 7, 2003
10,921
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Correct. But we were "invited" by the S Vietnamese after signing an economic aid treaty, followed by the passage of the Tonkin Gulf resolution by the senate. My question specifically says I believe Iraq was the first time the US invaded and overthrew a govt without an invitation or provocation of war.
Without knowing specifics, I think it goes back to the administration's interpretation of U.N. resolutions, previous agreements from the end of the Gulf War and subsequent agreements, and there was a resolution that pass Congress as well. I think there was some legal basis, not sure how shoddy it was.
 

blackangst1

Lifer
Feb 23, 2005
20,595
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Without knowing specifics, I think it goes back to the administration's interpretation of U.N. resolutions, previous agreements from the end of the Gulf War and subsequent agreements, and there was a resolution that pass Congress as well. I think there was some legal basis, not sure how shoddy it was.
It could be. But the one fact that IS clear is President Diem of the south invited the US to help him build a govt that would stand up to the north. The rest, as they say, is history.
 

Lemon law

Lifer
Nov 6, 2005
20,991
2
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Please dont thread crap. You didnt address anything I asked.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sorry Blackangts1, I may have not given you the answer you wanted, but I still may have raised the questions that are more important.

As I will wait for time to judge the importance of your question and my responses.
 

Hayabusa Rider

Admin Emeritus & Elite Member
Jan 26, 2000
50,880
4,212
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As pardon me and in all due respects Hayabusa, that has to be the most stupid statement I ever heard. Even if the USA tries to nuke Iran and try to make it into glass no man's land, enough Iranians will be left to shut down the Persian gulf for a very long time. Even a month would be enough to throw every oil dependent nation on earth into a economic depression.
The US doesn't have to nuke anything. We don't want to, don't need to. I understand this military thing is hard to understand but we have the capability to castrate the armed forces of Iran in short order. We don't have to take out civilian populations. We don't want or need to. We don't even have to launch a full scale attack of any kind.

Sorry, but the advantage of overwhelming military might as we have permits a menu of options for various scenarios. We will control the situation, and if we feel we need to act, remember that Obama is not Bush in the sense that he doesn't have the agenda the latter did. He's also a hell of a lot smarter and I'll grant him that.

Advantage: West.

And please don't don't try to sell us the Leon Pinhead fantasy that what ever remains of Iran would sail out in this set piece battle against US Navy warships and be destroyed. The US Navy can defend itself by in large, when the issue is, can they defend defenseless vulnerable oil tankers without US military boots on the ground to prevent it.
We can establish a beach head, but why? With British and other Western support (remember they will be in this game, and guess what? If Iran threatens they aren't going to hide) we can rotate forces. If there's a threat it's eliminated. You remind me of those who said the Saddams elite forces would give us hell during the first Gulf war. That too turned out to be quite the fiasco, but not for us. We're a lot stronger than that now. You really don't understand power.

Not to mention the fact, the very second the first US or Israel bomb falls on Iran, Iranian missiles would render every enemy's oil filling facilities into blazing wrecks.
Then it would suck to be Iran. With no reason to pussyfoot around, there would be no Iranian military. No missiles. No nuke program. Camels might be exempt. The Iranian leadership would be on borrowed time and if you think they hunted Saddam, that will seem like an Easter egg hunt compared to what the West will do. So much for Imadinnerjacket.

If so attacked we in the USA have a history of extracting our revenge, what gives you the idea haybasusa Iran won't do the same.
They just might and we can sit around talking about what a shame it was that they didn't listen. You see I don't want the Iranian people hurt, but if their leaders decide to attack the rest of the world in retaliation the shit is going to hit them far far worse.

As far as mushrooms, I wasn't the one who reinvented history. That was you. Me and mushrooms? I love them sauteed.

As I have said before I'll stand on my analysis of what has transpired in the region and we can compare it to yours. I suspect that many won't be backing you over me. There's a reason for that.
 

zanejohnson

Diamond Member
Nov 29, 2002
7,048
7
81
this is the thing about declaring war...

when a nation declares war, it means they will use EVERY MEANS NECESSARY to demolish the enemy... which means nukes.

that is why we havent' declared war since way way long ago... because if we do, then other nations understand we are about to literally bring hell to earth, and they won't put up with that.
 

nehalem256

Lifer
Apr 13, 2012
15,670
6
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It could be. But the one fact that IS clear is President Diem of the south invited the US to help him build a govt that would stand up to the north. The rest, as they say, is history.
So if another country asks us to fight their enemies then a war is legal? o_O
 

Lemon law

Lifer
Nov 6, 2005
20,991
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As my comment is, Hayabusa, you jus made a quite interesting comment is saying, "As I have said before I'll stand on my analysis of what has transpired in the region and we can compare it to yours. I suspect that many won't be backing you over me. There's a reason for that."

But what is especially reavealing is that you, Haybasusa make your comment in the past tense. When my comments are directed more in the future tense.

Let us face the past facts first, as the bulk of the world will continue to let the USA and Israel to dominate the mid-east region, as long as only UNCLE SUCKER pays the price, in term of fruitless military quagmires that cost other status quo nations nothing. As long as they get a free ride, and it costs them nothing, major powers like England, France, Germany, and even China, and China will go along.

That is the present tense world reality as Hayabsusa points out. But still for almost nation on earth, that is not the real future concern for the bulk of the world who by in large care nothing about Israeli, Palestinian, or larger mid-east issues. As their national insterests hinge solely on the continuing unimpedeed flow of mid-east oil to world markets.

As I say, in the future tense, if Israel or the USA are the ones to screw that oil flow up, the rest of the world will future tense, be on the US and Israel like stink on shit.

The USA may be militarily super powerful, but the second the larger world cuts the US credit line and quits lending the USA money, the US economy will come to a screeching halt. As credit rich nations like China and India will become the future buyers of mid-east oil while the Western powers will have to beg for every drop of mid-east oil.

Go ahead talk about the past when you should be worrying about the future.
 

Whiskey16

Golden Member
Jul 11, 2011
1,338
5
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I just finished Rumsfeld's book (which was quite good) and in one part he explained WMD stories aside, the US had plenty of reasons and opportunities to officially declare war (via congress) with Iraq, including our planes getting shot at while enforcing no fly zones.
Ahhh, you are misinformed. Those 'no-fly zones' were unilaterally enacted by the partnership of the USA and UK in gross violation of international law and existing UN Security Council resolutions which called for all member states to recognise and abide by the sovereign integrity of the Iraqi state. They were aggressive violations of Iraq and left the Iraqis with full legal means to act in defence.

That was realty, rather than some partisan spin from the likes of Rumsfeld.

I have posted on this here in the past, so blackangst1, here it is again for your consideration:


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Statements that the war upon Iraq in 2003 being legal are unjustifiable. For those who error in using Security Council Resolutions concerning Iraq as evidence for the legality of unilateral action, you are are mistaken. This is a result of public relations fiasco in which sections of text are taken out of context and lie is repeated long enough as to take hold a gospel by those who desire to believe it.

As per US law, US jurisdiction only applies to US territory. Whatever is acted upon internationally must be in legal accordance to relevant international law. US law is bound by international treaties and conventions that have been ratified by the USA. Aggression may not be acceptable without preceding or succeeding internationally ratified mandates (as per the UN) that may justify a response to clear and active threat against another state, domestic genocide, or aggressive action from one state upon another.

In result of the Iraqi action upon Kuwait, as per the ratified UN Resolutions since the end of the Gulf War hostilities and up to (..and beyond...) the 2003 invasion of Iraq, there was NO MANDATE to authorise military aggression against the sovereign authority of Iraq. The fact that there was no existing mandate was evident in an early 2003 Spanish government transcript between US President G.W. Bush, Secretary of State Rice, and former Spanish Prime Minister Aznar.

PM Aznar pushed President Bush to obtain a UN Security Council resolution that would specifically authorise the use of force against Saddam Hussein:
"This is like Chinese water torture. We have to bring an end to this." The Spanish president replied: "I agree, but it would be good to [be able to] count on the maximum number of people possible" - to have the backing of as many other countries as possible, that is. Aznar advised his American counterpart: "Have a little patience," to which Bush responded: "My patience has run out. I don't think we're going to go beyond the middle of March.
Such a Resolution was never obtained and the forlorn certainty to war came about.


1. Cease-Fire from the First Gulf War

For starters let’s blow away the Iraq breaking the Cease-Fire Justification theory.

No member state had the authority to authorise its own forces to take aggressive action against Iraq. Of course this would have also involved illegal actions by Britain and the USA in the so called no-fly-zones. November Resolution 678 (1990) gave participating UN member states the military mandate to intervene against Iraq for its aggression against Kuwait. April Resolution 687 (containing the Cease-Fire) was drafted to nullify 678’s specific mandate upon the use of military force against Iraq. April Resolution 687 (1991) (containing the Cease-Fire) was specific upon the further use of military against Iraq:

April Resolution 687 (1991) [Paragraph 4]: [The Security Council] … decides to remain seized of the matter and to take such further steps as may be required for the implementation of the present resolution and to secure peace and security in the area.
Only the Security Council may authorise a military mandate as contained in paragraph 2 of Resolution 687:

November Resolution 678 (1990) [Paragraph 2]: [The Security Council … acting under Chapter VII of the Charter] … authorizes Member States cooperating with the Government of Kuwait unless Iraq on or before 15 January 1991 fully implements as set forth in paragraph 1 above the foregoing resolutions to use all necessary means to uphold and implement resolution 660 (1990) and all subsequent relevant resolutions and to restore international peace and security in the area.
As per paragraph 4, the Security Council may re-convene to authorise and revive paragraph 2 – “all necessary means”, as in military force. The SC is the authority as the UN is party to the agreement. The US and Britain cannot unilaterally choose action against Iraq as they are not unique parties to these resolutions.

Nothing contained in Resolution 687 specified that the Cease-Fire is conditional upon non-compliance with the inspection requirements.
There was no mandate for an automatic renewal of military actions against Iraq by forces who partook in the 1991 Gulf War. Only following Resolutions may consider it by referencing 687 paragraph 2.

2. “No-Fly Zones”

No UN Resolution supported the existence of “No-Fly Zones” in Iraq. No such aircraft were subjects to any UN Chapter VI Observer mission, and there was NO chapter VII mission enacted by the UN Security council to authorise air strikes in Iraq since the end of the first Gulf War. The "sovereignty" & "integrity" of Iraq (as re-defined in resolution 687) were consistently violated by aggressive foreign powers who had no UN authority for their actions:

April Resolution 687 (1991), Introduction, Paragraph 3:
Affirming the commitment of all Member States to the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of Kuwait and Iraq, and noting the intention expressed by the Member States cooperating with Kuwait under paragraph 2 of resolution 678 (1990) to bring their military presence in Iraq to an end as soon as possible consistent with paragraph 8 of resolution 686 (1991),
The violations of Iraqi integrity and sovereignty by US and British bombings raids and even patrols (not affiliated with the UNSCOM weapon inspections) were in violation of UN resolutions often held up to defend the non-exist “No-Fly Zones”.

Though, there were zones in Iraq that were specified for certain non-Iraqi military forces to enter:

April Resolution 687 (1991), Paragraph 5:
... a plan for the immediate deployment of a United Nations observer unit to monitor the Khawr 'AM AUah and a demilitarized zone, which is hereby established, extending ten kilometres into Iraq and five kilometres into Kuwait from the boundary referred to in the "Agreed Minutes between the State of Kuwait and the Republic of Iraq...
  • US & British fighter and attack planes were not under the command nor part of the sanctioned UN observer unit
  • there was zero reference in 687 to support any area the size of the no-fly zone, only the enactment of a small demilitarised zone.
Here, at the time, is the opinion of the Secretary-General of the United Nations:

The US and also British governments justify it by claiming they have a UN Security Council resolution. To be sure about this, I asked Dr. Boutros Boutros-Ghali, who was Secretary General of the United Nations in 1992 when the Resolution 688 was passed. "The issue of no fly zones was not raised and therefore not debated: not a word," he said. "They offer no legitimacy to countries sending their aircraft to attack Iraq."
April Resolution 687 (1991), Paragraph 5:...to deter violations of the boundary through its presence in and surveillance of the demilitarized zone and to observe any hostile or potentially hostile action mounted from the territory of one State against the other;
Resolution 687 considered Iraq's conventional forces against another state and not domestic situations within Iraq...

The April Resolution 687 reaffirmed Iraq's sovereign integrity to external forces......

April Resolution 687 (1991), Paragraph 5:
and also requests the Secretary-General to report regularly to the Council on the operations of the unit and to do so immediately if there are serious violations of the zone or potential threats to peace;
Again, no authorisation for a lone member state to judge and take action. The resolution only left it to the Secretary-General to present to the Security Council for ASSESSMENT.

For Iraq targeting or even firing upon invading military aircraft, a 10km demilitarised zone into Southern Iraq hardly encompassed the vast and unauthorised “no-fly zones”.

Further 'The Safwan Accords' were nullified with the passing of UN Resolutions and there is no record of nor even a presentation to the Security Council of any UN Observer Force being engaged by Iraqi forces.

April Resolution 687 (1991), Paragraph 34:
Decides (Secretary-General and to the Security Council) to remain seized of the matter and to take such further steps as may be required for the implementation of the present resolution and to secure peace and security in the region.
If anyone still feels that April Resolution 687 alone give military action upon Iraq, the former is an unequivocal statement within one of the pertinent resolutions where an "ASSESSMENT" and a new draft must be made by the UN Security Council before further action may be taken.

USA and Britain (et all...) could not make an independent judgement and course of action. To conduct their own aggressive actions against Iraq were in violation of its "sovereignty" and "integrity" and a flagrant violation of international law of which they are parties to.

3. Resolution 1441

In early May 2005 news concerned PM Tony Blair's potential legal troubles over the Iraqi invasion. That news was too new, as a month before a former aid to the British AG came forth and stated he had informed his government that aggression against Iraq would be illegal.

As I referred to earlier, no nation (member UN state) is justified in using military force to assist a Security Council request without a direct request for assistance from the Security Council. The only two parties involved in all Resolutions upon Iraq were the Security Council and Iraq.

A key argument that was proposed in the fall of 2002 was that Resolution 1441 provided the only necessary mechanism for resumed state aggression against Iraq. That argument is false.

The adopted Resolution 1441 made no reference to a new Chapter VII action nor to re-enact Paragraph 2 of Resolution 678 (1990). That is the mechanism for the SC to authorise force (Chapter VII under the UN Charter) against Iraq. In Resolution 1441 no resumption of hostilities against Iraq are stated. Past resolutions are cited (including 678). There is no direct dismissal of Resolution 687 (1991 ceasefire agreement). That's the legal writing. Case closed there.

This is the portion of 1441 that brought a mechanism to re-evaluate Iraq's "final opportunity" (Paragraph 2, 1441) to comply with UNMOVIC and IAEA inspections:

Paragraph 4, Resolution 1441 (2002) : (Iraq) .... cooperate fully in the implementation of, this resolution shall constitute a further material breach of Iraq’s obligations and will be reported to the Council for assessment in accordance with paragraphs 11 and 12 below"
In 2003 the USA and UK failed in their pressure to have the SC pass a further resolution to authorise force. Some perpetuate the false spin that 1441 offered all of necessary SC authorisation for renewed hostilities against Iraq. A common theme in marketing can be to repeat a lie long enough and then enough of the market will faithfully accept it. Now, what were the intentions of the authors in Resolution 1441?

There is a telling quotation from a primary source for the draft of 1441. An adopted draft for 1441 came from the UK and the USA. In November of 2002 an article from the LA Times concerning the United States Ambassador to the United Nations, John D. Negroponte’s, view upon the adoption of 1441:
LA Times, November 8, 2002: "There's no 'automaticity' and this is a two-stage process, and in that regard we have met the principal concerns that have been expressed for the resolution," U.S. Ambassador John D. Negroponte said. "Whatever violation there is, or is judged to exist, will be dealt with in the council, and the council will have an opportunity to consider the matter before any other action is taken.
From the horses mouth…. An author of Resolution 1441 – the prime US participant to drafting it.

Despite this unambiguous spoken record and clear statements within Resolution 1441, the months that followed had White House and Whitehall spokespeople spreading a falsehood that authorisation existed and an invasion being legal.

Since the end of hostilities (as outlined in April 1991 Resolution 687) between Iraq and 'Member States co-operating with the Government of Kuwait' there has never again been "authorization" for "all necessary means" by member states to uphold a single resolution against the sovereign government of Iraq.

Any unauthorised member state military entry into Iraq was in violation of April Resolution 687. Reaffirmed in 1441 (as per 687), all member states were to retain recognition and respect of the "sovereignty and territorial integrity of Iraq". The cessation of hostilities and affirmation of Iraqi sovereignty and integrity as per 687 WAS recalled within 1441, and was NOT repealed. That ALONE is cemented grounds for the 2003 Iraq war to be illegal.

Beyond that, never was there the passing of a UN Resolution that called for the invasion and the disbandment of the Iraq government.

In 2007, the Spanish press published a transcript of a meeting between former Spanish President Aznar and President Bush. What was recorded support that a campaign of deception was instigated for the USA to lie to the public upon any existing mandate for military aggression upon Iraq. This was recently solidified after Bush's quotations from a meeting with the former Spanish President:
President Bush: We're in favor of obtaining a second resolution in the Security Council and we'd like to do it quickly. We'd like to announce it on Monday or Tuesday [February 24, 2003].
...
President Bush: It could be Monday afternoon, taking the time zone differences into account. In any case, next week. We're looking at a resolution drafted in such a way that it doesn't contain mandatory elements, that doesn't mention the use of force, and that states that Saddam Hussein has been incapable of fulfilling his obligations. That kind of resolution can be voted for by lots of people. It would be similar to the one passed during Kosovo [on June 10, 1999].
...
Condoleezza Rice: In fact there won't be a parallel declaration. We're thinking about a resolution that would be as simple as possible, without too many details on compliance that Saddam could use as [an excuse to stall via] phases and consequently fail to meet. We're talking with Blix [the UN chief inspector] and others on his team, to get ideas that can help introduce the resolution.

President Bush: Saddam Hussein won't change and he'll continue playing games. The time has come to get rid of him. That's it. As for me, I'll try from now on to use a rhetoric that's as subtle as can be while we're seeking approval of the resolution. If anyone vetoes [Russia, China, and France together with the US and the UK have veto power in the Security Council, being permanent members], we'll go. Saddam Hussein isn't disarming. We have to catch him right now.
...
We'd like to act with the mandate of the United Nations. If we act militarily, we'll do it with great precision and focus very closely on our objectives.
...
Prime Minister Aznar: It's very important to [be able to] count on a resolution. It isn't the same to act with it as without it. It would be very convenient to count on a majority in the Security Council that would support that resolution. In fact, having a majority is more important than anyone casting a veto. We think the content of the resolution should state, among other things, that Saddam Hussein has lost his opportunity.

President Bush: Yes, of course. That would be better than to make a reference to "all means necessary" [he refers to the standard UN resolution that authorizes the use of "all means necessary"].
Bush is on the record for recognising that he did not have a UN 'mandate' to take military action against Iraq. He is on record that he intended to act with or without such a legal mandate.

In Britain, there was also the position that warfare would be illegal. Yet through political pressure to appease the absolute warfare policy of the USA, Downing Street was quite adamant in coercing the Attorney General's office into changing their view (into a falsified opinion) to match the political policy or face consequences:

The Guardian, 'Revealed: the rush to war' Wednesday February 23, 2005
The attorney general, Lord Goldsmith, warned less than two weeks before the invasion of Iraq that military action could be ruled illegal.
The government was so concerned that it might be prosecuted it set up a team of lawyers to prepare for legal action in an international court.
And a parliamentary answer issued days before the war in the name of Lord Goldsmith - but presented by ministers as his official opinion before the crucial Commons vote - was drawn up in Downing Street, not in the attorney general's chambers.

The full picture of how the government manipulated the legal justification for war, and political pressure placed on its most senior law officer, is revealed in the Guardian today.

It appears that Lord Goldsmith never wrote an unequivocal formal legal opinion that the invasion was lawful, as demanded by Lord Boyce, chief of defence staff at the time.

The Guardian can also disclose that in her letter of resignation in protest against the war, Elizabeth Wilmshurst, deputy legal adviser at the Foreign Office, described the planned invasion of Iraq as a "crime of aggression".
She said she could not agree to military action in circumstances she described as "so detrimental to the international order and the rule of law".
That was corroborated in the infamous Downing Street memo:
The Attorney-General said that the desire for regime change was not a legal base for military action. There were three possible legal bases: self-defence, humanitarian intervention, or UNSC authorisation. The first and second could not be the base in this case. Relying on UNSCR 1205 of three years ago would be difficult.
...
Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. The NSC had no patience with the UN route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime's record. There was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action..... It seemed clear that Bush had made up his mind to take military action, even if the timing was not yet decided. But the case was thin. Saddam was not threatening his neighbours, and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea or Iran.
War was the policy. War was not to be averted, regardless of the true lack of justification and legal positions. It remains illegal. Despite what was stated in public, by all state parties involved, behind closed doors, it was known that the venture had no legal mandate.

Such an option to war was not necessary nor was it legal, and when states blatantly commit to such high of a crime, it's of little surprise that further misuse of their forces result in crimes against humanity.
 
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Hayabusa Rider

Admin Emeritus & Elite Member
Jan 26, 2000
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War was the policy.
Well, yeah. That doesn't mean that an official investigation has been done with due diligence. "We all know" doesn't work in a court of law. Note there has been virtual silence on the part of those who wanted to hang Bush but for some curious reason see no need to have Obama push for one. It's as if it never happened. I'm disappointed in some of them. Such outrage, then acceptance of inaction by the only ones who could pursue the truth and see justice done. Yet another example of holding the other party to a standard they would not abide themselves.
 

Whiskey16

Golden Member
Jul 11, 2011
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Yet another example of holding the other party to a standard they would not abide themselves.
I agree, the USA is not mature enough to handle rational and pragmatic introspection.

The UK is hardly perfect, but it is more advanced. The Iraq Inquiry will soon release its findings.

For those unaware:

The former Prime Minister, Gordon Brown announced on 15 June 2009 that an Inquiry would be conducted to identify lessons that can be learned from the Iraq conflict. The Iraq Inquiry was officially launched on 30 July 2009. At the launch the Chair of the Inquiry, Sir John Chilcot, set out the Inquiry's Terms of Reference:
"Our terms of reference are very broad, but the essential points, as set out by the Prime Minister and agreed by the House of Commons, are that this is an Inquiry by a committee of Privy Counsellors. It will consider the period from the summer of 2001 to the end of July 2009, embracing the run-up to the conflict in Iraq, the military action and its aftermath. We will therefore be considering the UK's involvement in Iraq, including the way decisions were made and actions taken, to establish, as accurately as possible, what happened and to identify the lessons that can be learned. Those lessons will help ensure that, if we face similar situations in future, the government of the day is best equipped to respond to those situations in the most effective manner in the best interests of the country."
The Inquiry committee members are Sir John Chilcot (Chairman), Sir Lawrence Freedman, Sir Martin Gilbert, Sir Roderic Lyne and Baroness Usha Prashar.
The Inquiry took evidence over a number of months, with as many hearings as possible held in public. The first round of hearings began in autumn 2009 and continued into early 2010. After a break for the general election, the Inquiry resumed its public hearings in June for a period of five weeks. The Inquiry held its final round of public hearings between 18th January - 2nd February 2011. The Inquiry intends to deliver its report as soon as possible (see the homepage). The Inquiry committee intends to include in the report all but the most sensitive information essential to our national security. The report will then be debated in Parliament.
 

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