Wednesday, October 06, 2004

France was Saddam's Whore...among others

There's no other way to put it. He may have been giving it to Satan in the South Park movie, but at least he was paying France for what he was doing to everybody else:
SADDAM HUSSEIN believed he could avoid the Iraq war with a bribery strategy targeting Jacques Chirac, the President of France, according to devastating documents released last night.

Memos from Iraqi intelligence officials, recovered by American and British inspectors, show the dictator was told as early as May 2002 that France - having been granted oil contracts - would veto any American plans for war.
The report goes on to say that Saddam hadn't made any WMD since 1992, but then...
Although they found no evidence that Saddam had made any WMD since 1992, they found documents which showed the "guiding theme" of his regime was to be able to start making them again with as short a lead time as possible."

Saddam was convinced that the UN sanctions - which stopped him acquiring weapons - were on the brink of collapse and he bankrolled several foreign activists who were campaigning for their abolition. He personally approved every one.

To keep America at bay, he focusing on Russia, France and China - three of the five UN Security Council members with the power to veto war. Politicians, journalists and diplomats were all given lavish gifts and oil-for-food vouchers.

Tariq Aziz, the former Iraqi deputy prime minister, told the ISG that the "primary motive for French co-operation" was to secure lucrative oil deals when UN sanctions were lifted. Total, the French oil giant, had been promised exploration rights.
Of course, the MSM is screaming the part about "no WMDs", while ignoring the other parts of the story...and look who else was getting a cut:

Among the alleged recipients of oil vouchers were Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri, former French Interior Minister Charles Pasqua, Russian ultranationalist Vladimir Zhirinovsky and his Liberal Democratic Party, the Russian presidential office, the Russian Foreign Ministry, the Ukraine Community Party, the Ukraine Socialist Party, the son of Lebanese President Emile Lahoud and the Peoples Liberation Front of Palestine. There are also many others.

The only U.N. official on the list is Benon Sevan, the head of the humanitarian program for Iraq, who has been accused previously of receiving an oil voucher and has denied it several times. He is list as a Mr. Sifan, a U.N. official.

The AP has this too but who knows how much play this will get in mainstream papers and TV. The New York Times wants to link it to Bush, Cheney and Halliburton. And John Kerry want us to trust the UN, France and the others for that Global Test he's so fond of?