Monday, June 20, 2005

The second UN resolution

Those who buy the Blair-Bush revisionist history that the attack on Iraq wasn't inevitable as the U. S. and Britain went to the United Nations to obtain the required resolution might wonder what the hell Colin Powell was doing appearing before the U. N., and lying to the U. N., on February 5, 2003. Of course, the reason he was there was to try to convince the U. N. to approve the resolution that Blair's legal advisors were telling him was still required, as the first U. N. resolution, the one referred to by Bush and Blair, wasn't sufficient for Britain to go to war. When Britain didn't get the second resolution, and went to war anyway, the woman who wrote the opinion saying that the resolution was required, Elizabeth Wilmshurst, resigned. It was only after it was clear that the second resolution wasn't forthcoming that Blair had his legal advisor, Lord Goldsmith, 'reeducated' to provide the proper opinion (I reviewed the sordid history here). Read this article by Ben Frank on the matter. Frank also refers to the testimony to UNSCOM of Gen. Hussein Kamel regarding Iraq's weapons of mass destruction (this was uncovered by Glen Rangwala). This testimony was referred to by members of the Bush Administration, including Dick Cheney, as evidence of the threat from Iraq. What they didn't mention was that Kamal's testimony (see page 7 of the pdf) was that:

  1. All the WMD had been destroyed; and

  2. The reason they were destroyed was because of the weapons inspectors!

In other words, the Bush Administration used the testimony to prove the exact opposite of what it said. The main thrust of the Bush Administration was that the weapons inspection process was insufficient, when in fact it was the real reason for the destruction of the WMDs. As Ben Frank says, the misuse of this testimony is a clear example of the 'fixing' of the facts in order to lead to war.