Madmen and Specialists

Remember the 11,000 page report that Iraq handed to the UN and which pertains to its weapons of mass destruction? As we have previously reported it was immediately seized by the United States and vetted before being distributed to the other 4 permanent members of the security council, with an edited version being given to the remaining members of the UN Security Council two weeks later.

Not much has been heard of the report and little wonder, for it names names. It lists the 150 plus western companies that assisted with Iraq’s WMD programme, including some who were still helping build up Iraq’s conventional arsenal a year ago. Some eighty German and twenty-four US companies are reported to have provided Saddam with the equipment and know-how to build his weapons arsenal from 1975 onwards.

It is not certain who leaked the document to Germany’s Die Tageszeitung newspaper, but it’s a fair bet it came from Baghdad which is keen to humiliate the alliance massing against it. Perhaps Saddam is all too aware of the hypocrisy and fork tongued cant of the Bush-Blair coalition. Certainly he is aware that the west armed Iraq to the teeth during its war with Iran, when Iraq was seen as a buffer to the spread of militant Islam from Iran and a threat to western oil interests in the region.

Die Tageszeitung reports: “From about 1975 onwards, these companies are shown to have supplied entire complexes, building elements, basic materials and technical know-how for Saddam Hussein’s programme to develop nuclear, chemical and biological weapons of mass destruction…They also supplied rockets and complete conventional weapons systems.”

And who are these US companies? I provide a list below and the category of military know-how they assisted with (A-nuclear, K-Chemical, B-biological and R-Rockets):

1. Honeywell (R,K). 2. Spektra Physics (K), 3. Semetex (R). 4. TI Coating(A,K).
5. UNISYS (A,K). 6. Sperry Corp (R,K). 7. Tektronix (R,A). 8. Rockwell (K).
9. Leybold Vacuum Systems (A). 10. Finnigan-MAT-US (A). 11. Hewlett Packard (A,R,K). 12. Dupont (A). 13. Eastman Kodak (R). American Type Culture Collection (B). 15. Alcolac International (C). 16. Consarc (A). 17. Carl Zeis-U.Ss (K). 18. Cerberus Ltd (A). 19. Elkectronic Associates (R) 20. International Computer Systems. 21. Bechtel (K). 22. EZ Logic Data Systems Inc. (R). 23. Canberra Industries Inc. (A). 24. Axel Electronics Inc. (A).

With Bush now fully intent on spreading his war on terror around the world and seeking to forge ahead with his Star Wars programme we can expect none of the above will be called upon to account for their relationship with a tyrannical regime. For one thing they will be busy supplying their own. Bush has already increased US military spending to unprecedented limits - $380 billion this year. Within 5 year it is set to increase to $500 billion per annum. Indeed, the US military industrial think tanks have been highly instrumental in providing the rationale for a ‘war’ with Iraq and developing concepts such as a ‘pre-emptive war’. And, as you have guessed, many a former defence company executive and consultant are well represented in the Bush administration, wielding immense influence on behalf od weapons manufacturers. And why not? War and hyped threats to the national security means bigger expenditure on weapons and massive profits.