Inspectors should not flee Iraq for US to attack
Date: Friday, March 14 @ 10:38:45 UTC
Topic: United Nations

A Decent Proposal Hans Blix Conscience Should Now Allow Him To Refuse

by Ben Roberts

In this climate of impending war in Iraq everyone is offering proposals that range from the ridiculous to the sublime. British Prime Minister Tony Blair, the Dossier for Dummies guy, is offering a proposal demanding more interviews with Iraqi scientists outside of Iraq. Non compliance with his proposal would give clearance for military action. The United States is offering a proposal to delay an attack deadline to March 17 when Hans Blix submits a report, but insists that a month delay is, in Ari Fleischer's words, 'a non starter.' Various leaders of Gulf states, who preside over repressive and non democratic monarchies are proposing that Iraqi leader, Saddam Hussein, abandon Iraq and seek refuge in another country.

If these wild eyed proposals can be put forward as reasonable and credible, then I feel qualified to join the mad fray and offer a proposal of my own. Here it is:

To date Iraq has taken the unusual action of complying with Hans Blix and his UNMOVIC agency requirement that he destroy its Al Samoud ll missiles. This missile is the centerpiece of any Iraqi defense in repelling an invasion by American forces. It is almost suicidal for Iraq to have destroyed roughly a quarter of these weapons to date when a superpower, armed to the teeth, is amassed just outside its borders geared to attack. Destruction of this weapon is without question dangerous for Iraq, guaranteed to ensure a bloodbath on its citizens by American forces. All US military planners have to do is sit back, wait until the Iraqis comply with Blix by totally destroying this deterrent, then launch an attack.

This would be an international outrage, with the blood of Iraqis on the hands of the UN, UNMOVIC, and Hans Blix. My proposal is that Hans Blix and his agency guarantee the Iraqis that, when the US orders the UN to vacate Iraq so that it can commence its bloodletting unseen, he and his inspectors will not flee Iraq like rats abandoning a sinking ship. Instead they will defy any such order, and continue investigating, with cameras rolling to collect data on Iraq, as well as on US military activity. Remember videocameras are great deterrents to violent activity that prefers to remain hidden. Just ask the LAPD and Rodney King.

Implementing such a proposal will be a boon to the UN, and do the contrary of what George Bush has unceasingly accused the agency of becoming. Instead of becoming irrelevant and obsolete, such a stance would empower the UN like no other action in decades. For the last fifty plus years the US has systematically strangled and weakened the UN in its mission of peace, harmony, and the rule of law. Just one look at the almost never ending list of UN resolutions passed on illegal Israeli activity, and the resultant US vetoes of such resolutions would leave no doubt about this.

Just recently, after the Jenin massacre by the Israeli army, Kofi Annan, the UN Secretary General, organized a panel to investigate the facts. Israel barred entry by the UN. The US promptly upheld their action, as they have numerous others. How can the US now selectively accuse the United Nations of not discharging its duty in the case of Iraq, when in truth they are executing in a most exemplary manner in this instance? Now is the time for them to go even further. George Bush, following American law, may order a person to leave the United States, but he cannot order anyone, most especially UN officials, to vacate Iraq. They have an international mission that supersedes US demands. Moreover, and most people are unaware of this, UNMOVIC is funded by Iraq. Yes, the Iraqi Oil for Food Program, administered by the UN, pays the costs of UNMOVIC inspections. Almost laughable, isn't it, that Iraq is paying the cost of being investigated? Be that as it may, and for these reasons, the UN has absolutely no requirement to comply with US demands that this body facilitate their attack on another country. Such a defiant stance by the UN would result in a kaleidoscopic nightmare for the United States. A public relations nightmare. A legal nightmare as regards international law, and a moral nightmare in the eyes of the world. It would effectively bar any attack by US forces on the peoples of Iraq. Such a stance would rejuvenate and empower the UN to conduct its mandate as the world citizens expect it to, making it not irrelevant, but rather empowering it. A necessary and desired direction for this body, given the dangerous and uncertain world we live in today.

Ben Roberts is a newsletter editor, freelance writer and published author. His book, Jackals of Samarra, was published in January 2001. Ben can be contacted by email at:

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