In 1991, at the end of Operation Desert Storm, the USA called off the dogs and had mercy on the Iraqi Republican Guards who were being dispatched like fish in a barrel. Iraq, in return, signed UNSC Resolution 687, which served as a cease fire for the Gulf War. The world should forget about the 17 useless UN resolutions passed since that time and take a closer look at that original resolution.
By any measure, the Iraqis have violated this resolution and over. Indeed, the Iraqis have been behaving as if they had WON the Gulf War.
Because this served as a 'cease-fire" document, the USA should just declare the cease fire null and void and proceed with ridding the world of the Iraqi menace once and for all.
Those not already familiar with the document, will be astonished at the breadth and depth of Iraqi violations of this original agreement.
Following are some highlights:
UNSC Resolution 687, 3 April 1991
"7. Invites Iraq to reaffirm unconditionally its obligations under the Geneva Protocol for the Prohibition of the Use in War of Asphyxiating, Poisonous or Other Gases, and of Bacteriological Methods of Warfare, signed at Geneva on 17 June 1925, and to ratify the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on Their Destruction, of 10 April 1972; "
"8. Decides that Iraq shall unconditionally accept the destruction, removal, or rendering harmless, under international supervision, of:
(a) All chemical and biological weapons and all stocks of agents and all related subsystems and components and all research, development, support and manufacturing facilities;
(b) All ballistic missiles with a range greater than 150 kilometres and related major parts, and repair and production facilities; "
"9. Decides, for the implementation of paragraph 8 above, the following:
(a) Iraq shall submit to the Secretary-General, within fifteen days of the adoption of the present resolution, a declaration of the locations, amounts and types of all items specified in paragraph 8 and agree to urgent, on-site inspection as specified below;
(b) The Secretary-General, in consultation with the appropriate Governments and, where appropriate, with the Director-General of the World Health Organization, within forty-five days of the passage of the present resolution, shall develop, and submit to the Council for approval, a plan calling for the completion of the following acts within forty-five days of such approval:
(i) The forming of a Special Commission, which shall carry out immediate on-site inspection of Iraq's biological, chemical and missile capabilities, based on Iraq's declarations and the designation of any additional locations by the Special Commission itself;
(ii) The yielding by Iraq of possession to the Special Commission for destruction, removal or rendering harmless, taking into account the requirements of public safety, of all items specified under paragraph 8 (a) above, including items at the additional locations designated by the Special Commission under paragraph 9 (b) (i) above and the destruction by Iraq, under the supervision of the Special Commission, of all its missile capabilities, including launchers, as specified under paragraph 8 (b) above; "
"10. Decides that Iraq shall unconditionally undertake not to use, develop, construct or acquire any of the items specified in paragraphs 8 and 9 above and requests the Secretary-General, in consultation with the Special Commission, to develop a plan for the future ongoing monitoring and verification of Iraq's compliance with this paragraph, to be submitted to the Security Council for approval within one hundred and twenty days of the passage of this resolution; "
"11. Invites Iraq to reaffirm unconditionally its obligations under the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons of 1 July 1968; "
"12. Decides that Iraq shall unconditionally agree not to acquire or develop nuclear weapons or nuclear-weapons-usable material or any subsystems or components or any research, development, support or manufacturing facilities related to the above; to submit to the Secretary-General and the Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency within fifteen days of the adoption of the present resolution a declaration of the locations, amounts, and types of all items specified above; to place all of its nuclear-weapons-usable materials under the exclusive control, for custody and removal, of the International Atomic Energy Agency, with the assistance and cooperation of the Special Commission as provided for in the plan of the Secretary-General discussed in paragraph 9 (b) above; to accept, in accordance with the arrangements provided for in paragraph 13 below, urgent on-site inspection and the destruction, removal or rendering harmless as appropriate of all items specified above; and to accept the plan discussed in paragraph 13 below for the future ongoing monitoring and verification of its compliance with these undertakings; "
"13. Requests the Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, through the Secretary-General, with the assistance and cooperation of the Special Commission as provided for in the plan of the Secretary-General in paragraph 9 (b) above, to carry out immediate on-site inspection of Iraq's nuclear capabilities based on Iraq's declarations and the designation of any additional locations by the Special Commission; to develop a plan for submission to the Security Council within forty-five days calling for the destruction, removal, or rendering harmless as appropriate of all items listed in paragraph 12 above; to carry out the plan within forty-five days following approval by the Security Council; and to develop a plan, taking into account the rights and obligations of Iraq under the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons of 1 July 1968, for the future ongoing monitoring and verification of Iraq's compliance with paragraph 12 above, including an inventory of all nuclear material in Iraq subject to the Agency's verification and inspections to confirm that Agency safeguards cover all relevant nuclear activities in Iraq, to be submitted to the Security Council for approval within one hundred and twenty days of the passage of the present resolution; "
"30. Decides that, in furtherance of its commitment to facilitate the repatriation of all Kuwaiti and third country nationals, Iraq shall extend all necessary cooperation to the International Committee of the Red Cross, providing lists of such persons, facilitating the access of the International Committee of the Red Cross to all such persons wherever located or detained and facilitating the search by the International Committee of the Red Cross for those Kuwaiti and third country nationals still unaccounted for; "
"31. Invites the International Committee of the Red Cross to keep the Secretary-General apprised as appropriate of all activities undertaken in connection with facilitating the repatriation or return of all Kuwaiti and third country nationals or their remains present in Iraq on or after 2 August 1990"
"32. Requires Iraq to inform the Security Council that it will not commit or support any act of international terrorism or allow any organization directed towards commission of such acts to operate within its territory and to condemn unequivocally and renounce all acts, methods and practices of terrorism; "
"33. Declares that, upon official notification by Iraq to the Secretary-General and to the Security Council of its acceptance of the provisions above, a formal cease-fire is effective between Iraq and Kuwait and the Member States cooperating with Kuwait in accordance with resolution 678 (1990); "
Now let's take a look at the record since this Resolution was passed and accepted.
- Several times over the past dozen years, Iraq has been found to have been concealing its prohibited WMD stockpiles and manufacturing programs from UN inspectors, all in violation of UNSC Resolution 687.
- We have now even recently found Iraq to be in possession of and to be actively manufacturing prohibited ballistic missiles in violation of UNSC Resolution 687.
- A dozen years after Iraq invaded Kuwait, there are still several hundred Kuwaitis who remain unaccounted for.
- Iraq continued to harbor known, wanted terrorist Abu Nidal for years until he died by suicide or assassination last summer. That was a violation of 687. Also, Iraq plotted to assassinate former US President George Bush in 1993. That was also a violation. Iraq is known to have provided financial assistance to Palestinian terrorist groups who have carried out suicide bombings in Israel. That is a violation. And, finally, known al Qaeda operatives are known to be active in Iraq as explained by Secretary of State Colin Powell before the UN Security Council. Once again, that is a violation of UNSC Resolution 687.
The major issues raised in UNSC Resolution 687 were: (i) Iraq's WMD (weapons of mass destruction) programs; (ii) Iraq's ballistic missile program; (iii) Iraq's history of support for international terrorism and; (iv) the whereabouts and fate of several hundred missing Kuwaiti nationals.
Iraq has committed numerous violations with regard to all four counts. Even as late as today, Iraqi fighter jets threatened USAF U-2 recon flights working for the UN--once again in violation of UNSC Resolution 687 passed a dozen years ago.
Yet the UN still wants to pass yet another Security Council resolution? I frankly have lost count, but I believe that the next resolution will be the 17th or 18th dealing with Iraq since the passage of 687 way back in 1991. What on earth would another resolution accomplish? Perhaps it would serve to delay US forces' discovery that Russia, China, France and Germany all violated embargoes put on Iraq by UNSC Resolution 687.
Actually a new resolution would be still-borne because French President Chirac says France will veto any new resolution authorizing force.
THE UN: SLOUCHING TOWARD IRRELEVANCE
Right now the US is in the almost surreal position of having to lobby countries like Cameroon, Guinea, Mexico, Pakistan, Syria, Angola and Chile in order to defend our own national security. Meanwhile, France, a nation that the US twice went to war for in the last century, is stabbing us in the back and building a roadblock, effectively ensuring that US national security will be at risk. And let's not forget that we have seen numerous reports of Chinese and Russian violations of the arms embargo imposed by UNSC Resolution 687 over the years. Both of those nations can put up roadblocks as well.
It is truly absurd that in America's efforts to combat rogue, terrorist-sponsoring nations with weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles, we are having to exercise furious shuttle diplomacy to win the approval of nations like Chile, Angola and Guinea.
Those nations share few of our values, next to none of our national interests and certainly don't have any national security stake in the outcome of the effort to combat rogue, terrorist-sponsoring nations with weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles.
Chile, Angola and Guinea are no more threatened by Saddam Hussein than the man on the moon...he's not stockpiling anthrax, VX and ballistic missiles to take out Santiago, Luanda or Conakry. Nor is he likely to be inclined to pass weaponry and support on to terrorists to target Beijing or Moscow.
The idea that we are in this position seems unfathomable and is a perversion of the original intent of the UN. This very affair, as well as the UN's feeble dealings with Iraq over the past dozen years (not to mention the more recent revelations about the UN's inability to even identify the nature of Iran's nuclear program) have rendered the world organization irrelevant.
No longer can the US afford to subordinate its security to the interests of adversaries in the UN. We must not cede US sovereignty to the UN or anyone. We must defend our own national security first and foremost.
A member of the World Tribune Board of Advisers, Christopher Holton heads up the Blanchard Economic Research Unit and has been writing on economic and national security affairs for more than a decade. He can be reached through his non-profit web site, http://www.nationalsecurityonline.com.