Skip to comments.FLASHBACK: "Russia Hid Saddam's WMDs" (Washington Times, 10/2/03)
Posted on 11/16/2005 10:51:27 PM PST by WhistlingPastTheGraveyard
On March 20, Russian President Vladimir Putin denounced the U.S.-led "aggression" against Iraq as "unwarranted" and "unjustifiable." Three days later, Pravda said that an anonymous Russian "military expert" was predicting that the United States would fabricate finding Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov immediately started plying the idea abroad, and it has taken hold around the world ever since.
As a former Romanian spy chief who used to take orders from the Soviet KGB, it is perfectly obvious to me that Russia is behind the evanescence of Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction. After all, Russia helped Saddam get his hands on them in the first place. The Soviet Union and all its bloc states always had a standard operating procedure for deep sixing weapons of mass destruction in Romanian it was codenamed "Sarindar, meaning "emergency exit." I implemented it in Libya. It was for ridding Third World despots of all trace of their chemical weapons if the Western imperialists ever got near them. We wanted to make sure they would never be traced back to us, and we also wanted to frustrate the West by not giving them anything they could make propaganda with.
All chemical weapons were to be immediately burned or buried deep at sea. Technological documentation, however, would be preserved in microfiche buried in waterproof containers for future reconstruction. Chemical weapons, especially those produced in Third World countries, which lack sophisticated production facilities, often do not retain lethal properties after a few months on the shelf and are routinely dumped anyway. And all chemical weapons plants had a civilian cover making detection difficult, regardless of the circumstances.
The plan included an elaborate propaganda routine. Anyone accusing Moammar Gadhafi of possessing chemical weapons would be ridiculed. Lies, all lies! Come to Libya and see! Our Western left-wing organizations, like the World Peace Council, existed for sole purpose of spreading the propaganda we gave them. These very same groups bray the exact same themes to this day. We always relied on their expertise at organizing large street demonstrations in Western Europe over America's "war-mongering" whenever we wanted to distract world attention from the crimes of the vicious regimes we sponsored.
Iraq, in my view, had its own "Sarindar" plan in effect direct from Moscow. It certainly had one in the past. Nicolae Ceausescu told me so, and he heard it from Leonid Brezhnev. KGB chairman Yury Andropov, and later, Gen. Yevgeny Primakov, told me so, too. In the late 1970s, Gen. Primakov ran Saddam's weapons programs. After that, as you may recall, he was promoted to head of the Soviet foreign intelligence service in 1990, to Russia's minister of foreign affairs in 1996, and in 1998, to prime minister. What you may not know is that Primakov hates Israel and has always championed Arab radicalism. He was a personal friend of Saddam's and has repeatedly visited Baghdad after 1991, quietly helping Saddam play his game of hide-and-seek.
The Soviet bloc not only sold Saddam its WMDs, but it showed them how to make them "disappear." Russia is still at it. Primakov was in Baghdad from December until a couple of days before the war, along with a team of Russian military experts led by two of Russia's topnotch "retired"generals: Vladislav Achalov, a former deputy defense minister, and Igor Maltsev, a former air defense chief of staff. They were all there receiving honorary medals from the Iraqi defense minister. They clearly were not there to give Saddam military advice for the upcoming warSaddam's Katyusha launchers were of World War II vintage, and his T-72 tanks, BMP-1 fighting vehicles and MiG fighter planes were all obviously useless against America. "I did not fly to Baghdad to drink coffee," was what Gen. Achalov told the media afterward. They were there orchestrating Iraq's "Sarindar" plan.
The U.S. military in fact, has already found the only thing that would have been allowed to survive under the classic Soviet "Sarindar" plan to liquidate weapons arsenals in the event of defeat in war the technological documents showing how to reproduce weapons stocks in just a few weeks.
Such a plan has undoubtedly been in place since August 1995 when Saddam's son-in-law, Gen. Hussein Kamel, who ran Iraq's nuclear, chemical and biological programs for 10 years, defected to Jordan. That August, UNSCOM and International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors searched a chicken farm owned by Kamel's family and found more than one hundred metal trunks and boxes containing documentation dealing with all categories of weapons, including nuclear. Caught red-handed, Iraq at last admitted to its "extensive biological warfare program, including weaponization," issued a "Full, Final and Complete Disclosure Report" and turned over documents about the nerve agent VX and nuclear weapons.
Saddam then lured Gen. Kamel back, pretending to pardon his defection. Three days later, Kamel and over 40 relatives, including women and children, were murdered, in what the official Iraqi press described as a "spontaneous administration of tribal justice." After sending that message to his cowed, miserable people, Saddam then made a show of cooperation with UN inspection, since Kamel had just compromised all his programs, anyway. In November 1995, he issued a second "Full, Final and Complete Disclosure" as to his supposedly non-existent missile programs. That very same month, Jordan intercepted a large shipment of high-grade missile components destined for Iraq. UNSCOM soon fished similar missile components out of the Tigris River, again refuting Saddam's spluttering denials. In June 1996, Saddam slammed the door shut to UNSCOM's inspection of any "concealment mechanisms." On Aug. 5, 1998, halted cooperation with UNSCOM and the IAEA completely, and they withdrew on Dec. 16, 1998. Saddam had another four years to develop and hide his weapons of mass destruction without any annoying, prying eyes. U.N. Security Council resolutions 1115, (June 21, 1997), 1137 (Nov. 12, 1997), and 1194 (Sept. 9, 1998) were issued condemning Iraqineffectual words that had no effect. In 2002, under the pressure of a huge U.S. military buildup by a new U.S. administration, Saddam made yet another "Full, Final and Complete Disclosure," which was found to contain "false statements" and to constitute another "material breach" of U.N. and IAEA inspection and of paragraphs eight to 13 of resolution 687 (1991).
It was just a few days after this last "Disclosure," after a decade of intervening with the U.N. and the rest of the world on Iraq's behalf, that Gen. Primakov and his team of military experts landed in Baghdad even though, with 200,000 U.S. troops at the border, war was imminent, and Moscow could no longer save Saddam Hussein. Gen. Primakov was undoubtedly cleaning up the loose ends of the "Sarindar" plan and assuring Saddam that Moscow would rebuild his weapons of mass destruction after the storm subsided for a good price.
Mr. Putin likes to take shots at America and wants to reassert Russia in world affairs. Why would he not take advantage of this opportunity? As minister of foreign affairs and prime minister, Gen. Primakov has authored the "multipolarity" strategy of counterbalancing American leadership by elevating Russia to great-power status in Eurasia. Between Feb. 9-12, Mr. Putin visited Germany and France to propose a three-power tactical alignment against the United States to advocate further inspections rather than war. On Feb. 21, the Russian Duma appealed to the German and French parliaments to join them on March 4-7 in Baghdad, for "preventing U.S. military aggression against Iraq." Crowds of European leftists, steeped for generations in left-wing propaganda straight out of Moscow, continue to find the line appealing.
Mr. Putin's tactics have worked. The United States won a brilliant military victory, demolishing a dictatorship without destroying the country, but it has begun losing the peace. While American troops unveiled the mass graves of Saddam's victims, anti-American forces in Western Europe and elsewhere, spewed out vitriolic attacks, accusing Washington of greed for oil and not of really caring about weapons of mass destruction, or exaggerating their risks, as if weapons of mass destruction were really nothing very much to worry about after all.
It is worth remembering that Andrei Sakharov, the father of the Soviet hydrogen bomb, chose to live in a Soviet gulag instead of continuing to develop the power of death. "I wanted to alert the world," Sakharov explained in 1968, "to the grave perils threatening the human race thermonuclear extinction, ecological catastrophe, famine." Even Igor Kurchatov, the KGB academician who headed the Soviet nuclear program from 1943 until his death in 1960, expressed deep qualms of conscience about helping to create weapons of mass destruction. "The rate of growth of atomic explosives is such," he warned in an article written together with several other Soviet nuclear scientists not long before he died, "that in just a few years the stockpile will be large enough to create conditions under which the existence of life on earth will be impossible."
The Cold War was fought over the reluctance to use weapons of mass destruction, yet now this logic is something only senior citizens seem to recall. Today, even lunatic regimes like that in North Korea not only possess weapons of mass destruction, but openly offer to sell them to anyone with cash, including terrorists and their state sponsors. Is anyone paying any attention? Being inured to proliferation, however, does not reduce its danger. On the contrary, it increases it.
Saddam's Ex-KGB Connection? (The Pacepa Accusation)
www.townhall.com ^ | August 23, 2003 | Jay Bryant
An article by Ion Pacepa, which appeared in Thursday's Washington Times is much too important to simply be left to stand alone.
Pacepa charges that General Yevgeny Primakov, a former Prime Minister of Russia and onetime head of the Soviet foreign intelligence service, ran Saddam Hussein's weapons program and personally oversaw the liquidation of the evidence that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction. Pacepa doesn't quite say it directly, but his article implies that Russian President Vladimir Putin was aware of and approved Primakov's role in the WMD disappearance program.
If all this is true, it is the most important news about Iraq since the fall of Saddam's government, for two reasons: first, it indicts the anti-American axis of old Europe in complicity not just to prevent us from getting too big for our britches, but in a willingness to prop up the most dreadful dictator since Stalin in the process.
Second, it provides the real answer to the embarrassing question: why haven't you found any WMD's?
Who is this Ion Pacepa, and why should we believe him? Once deputy chief of Romanian foreign intelligence, he defected to the U.S. in 1978. He remains the highest- ranking intelligence officer ever to defect from the Soviet Bloc.
To me, that pedigree means two things: he knows a lot about intelligence, and he knows how to lie.
Is he lying about Primakov? Or perhaps he's not exactly lying; but perhaps his theory is simply wrong.
Here is Pacepa's case. The Soviets and their allies always had a "standard operating procedure" for getting rid of weapons of mass destruction. Pacepa himself implemented the S.O.P. in Libya.
Saddam had such a procedure in place; Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu "told me so," Pacepa says, and so did Primakov, who "in the late 1970's ran Saddam's weapons programs." There is a problem with this assertion, because Saddam did not officially come to power until July of 1979, and Ceausescu certainly was not chatting up Pacepa after the latter's 1978 defection. However, Saddam was the power behind the throne of his cousin General Ahmad Hassan al-Bakr, who assumed control of Iraq in a 1968 coup d'etat, so it all may be true at least de facto, if not de jure. But Pacepa needs to explain just how this part of the story works to have real credibility.
Primakov, according to Pacepa, worked with Saddam throughout the latter's reign, and it is true that he was closely involved with the Iraqi leader in 1991, earning the enmity of the administration of Bush the Elder.
Primakov's closeness to Saddam is attested by other sources as well. In 1999, when the general was Russian Prime Minister, journalist Seymour Hirsch published an article in the New Yorker alleging that Primakov had received an $800,000 Iraqi bribe hand-delivered by Tariq Aziz.
But the truly important piece of information in Pacepa's story is this: that Primakov was in Baghdad with two other former Soviet generals, Vladislav Achalov and Igor Maltsev, "from December  until a couple of days before the war."
I have confirmed that he was there at least part of that time. On February 24, 2003, Condoleezza Rice was asked by a reporter what she thought Primakov was doing in Baghdad.
She didn't know, but she knew he was there, and referenced his parallel 1991 visit in her answer.
If Primakov spent anything like the three months before the Iraqi War in Baghdad, it is patently obvious that he was up to no good, and logical, given his expertise, to believe his mission may well have been orchestrating the deep-sixing of Saddam's WMD stockpile.
The worldwide press should pick up this story, investigate it thoroughly, and if it vets out make it front page news for a long time. They should smoke out Primakov and his two cronies, too, perhaps even more so and ask them to explain what they was doing on the banks of the Tigris in the winter of '03. Whatever lie they tell in answering, reporters should follow up on, disprove and write another week's worth of stories.
Putin, too should be made to feel the heat of this investigation. Primakov, Achalov and Matlsev may have been there on their own, without Putin's imprimatur, but I doubt it, and anyway, Putin should be put on the record with that claim, if he chooses to make it.
The world (not to mention the Democrats) is beating the Bush Administration about the head and shoulders with the accusation that there are no WMD's in Iraq. If the reason is because General Primakov implemented an old Soviet plan and liquidated the whole stockpile, then the world needs to know it.
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So you think the other Newsmax story has legs?
It would be nice, but I won't hold my breath waiting for that to pan out.
We should start a new mantra to counter the "Bush lied" mantra: WMD were moved out.
Thankfully, it's a Weekly Standard story, by Stephen Hayes. I believe it will have legs. I think the White House is going to force the issue with this one.
If it exists, it would be interesting.
I was glad they had five months to move the weapons out rather than doing a doomsday tactic which would have killed huge numbers of people.
Russia would easily be the broker of this with Iran involved aswell.
Israel has satellite pass coverage of newly overturned fields in the Bekka allong with other places in Syria.
Hezbollah had been handling the goods too....and screwed up..as their have been several massive detonations with ambulances racing to hospitals.
In one instance it appears Hezbollah wanted a dry run on start up...and blew themselves to kingdom come.
Its a bit of a lull now concerning missiles,Russia and salivating Moon children.
Ex Soviet/ Ukrainian KH 55 cruise missiles in the possesion of several mideast nations hints they have been given a toy waiting for nuclear warhead mating.
IAEA even caught Egypt with signatory breaking isotope at their facilities...indicating that Cairo was interested in mating something...to something.
A.Q. Khan may have given more away than we imagine.
Cruise missile is a better deal than ballistic trajectory.
Israel can breathe a sigh of relief inthat U.S. has a fairly good handle on any shinanigans attempted by Pharaoh.
Syria and her ageing scud fire chain are more likely a decent IAF outing with a challenge.
Israel sends regrets to Erikkison cellular for blowing away their cell repeater system in Syria and the Lebanon.
yet...there is concern down the road.
and should the rats get back in the whitehouse.
tunnels in mountains and underground will be busy like bee hives in the land of the moon children.
Iraq Seeks Talks to Save Its Stock of Barred Missiles: Russia sent a former prime minister, Yevgeny Primakov, an old friend of President Saddam Hussein of Iraq, to Baghdad. The nature of that mission was not disclosed.
Gertz: Russia tied to Iraq's missing arms (Russian special forces troops moved many of Saddam Hussein's weapons and related goods out of Iraq and into Syria in the weeks before the March 2003 U.S. military operation, The Washington Times has learned. John A. Shaw, the deputy undersecretary of defense for international technology security, said in an interview that he believes the Russian troops, working with Iraqi intelligence, "almost certainly" removed the high-explosive material that went missing from the Al-Qaqaa facility, south of Baghdad. )
So, one way or another, the decision to invade Iraq DID lead to the termination of Saddam's WMD programs.
Who cares whether THEY dumped them, or WE confiscated them?
The result was the same - terminated.
Why can't the White House sell this simple message?
And that's not a partisan issue; that Iraq won't have the capability to target US bases in Europe with NBC missiles is a good thing for America. That development was given if left unchecked.
And now we're learning where they were moved!
Copied & saved- thanks!