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U.S. Believes Russians in Baghdad Are Aiding Iraq
Reuters ^ | March 24th, 2003 | Arshad Mohammed

Posted on 03/24/2003 4:51:16 PM PST by Sabertooth

U.S. Believes Russians in Baghdad Are Aiding Iraq
Mon March 24, 2003 06:20 PM ET
By Arshad Mohammed

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States believes Russian private sector technicians are in Baghdad helping train Iraqis to use electronic jamming systems that could endanger U.S. forces fighting Iraq, U.S. officials said on Monday.

President Bush telephoned Russian President Vladimir Putin to protest alleged Russian sales of night-vision goggles, antitank missiles and global positioning system (GPS) jamming systems to Iraq, the White House said. U.S. officials said such sales would violate U.N. sanctions.

"It's the kind of equipment that will put our young men and women in harm's way," Secretary of State Colin Powell told Fox News Channel, without identifying the materiel. "It gives an advantage to the enemy, an advantage we don't want them to have."

"We have been in touch with the Russians over a period of many months to point this out .... and in the last 48 hours I have seen even more information that causes me concern," Powell said. "So far I am disappointed at the response."

Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov of Russia, which with France opposed the U.S.-led war against Iraq and threatened to veto a U.N. resolution sanctioning it, denied Russia had supplied Iraq with any military equipment in breach of U.N. sanctions.

"No facts proving U.S. concerns have been found," Ivanov said in Moscow, although a Russian foreign ministry spokesman said Moscow would study any evidence Washington provides.


U.S. officials said Washington had been worried about the alleged sales by Russian companies for the better part of a year and had protested to Moscow at increasingly senior levels, culminating in Bush's telephone call to Putin on Monday.

"We are very concerned that there are reports of ongoing cooperation and support to Iraqi military forces being provided by a Russian company that produces GPS jamming equipment," said White House spokesman Ari Fleischer, also citing alleged sales of night-vision goggles and anti-tank guided missiles.

For years, the United States has with limited success asked Russia not to spread weapons technology, notably to Iran, where U.S. officials complain Moscow has sold missile technology. The United States has in particular pushed Russia to tighten export controls to prevent private firms from making such sales.

U.S. officials believe the alleged military sales to Iraq have been carried out by private Russian firms and they want greater oversight by the Russian government to stop them.

A U.S. official who asked not to be named said Washington decided to make its accusations public late last week when it discovered Russian company technicians in Baghdad aiding the Iraqis with the jamming system after the U.S.-led war began.

"They are there in Baghdad ... trying to make the system work, the jamming system," said the U.S. official.

"It was the discovery that there are ... Russian technicians helping to make this GPS jamming work in Baghdad that prompted the internal debate in the U.S. government about what to do and (whether) to go public," the official added.

Powell, speaking later to Britain's Sky News, declined to say whether he believed the Russian technicians were on the ground, but said flatly: "I know the equipment is there."

Allegations of such alleged Russian military sales surfaced on Sunday in the Washington Post, which reported that the United States had protested against the sales late last week.

The newspaper cited Bush administration sources as saying one Russian company was helping the Iraqi military deploy electronic jamming equipment against U.S. planes and bombs, and two others have sold antitank missiles and thousands of night-vision goggles in violation of U.N. sanctions.

A U.S. official who asked not to be named told Reuters there were signs some of the materiel may have been listed as bound for Syria or Yemen to hide its intended destination.

TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: aviaconversiya; gps; ivanov; kbptula; putin; russia; warlist
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To: Sabertooth
Russia... "the new France."

Man, am I glad we got our daughter adopted and out of Russia last year, not now, with all of this tenseness. But I'll say one thing, the Russians, I noticed in Moscow, seemed to have this unhealthy affinity for all things French. The architecture of "old town" (not the Khruschev high rises) was straight out of Paris. My host family's daughter had married a Frenchman working in Moscow and later emigrated to France. Russian pop music has a very French character to it, etc.

Francophilia seemed to be the rage, so I was saddened but not surprised to see Russia jump on the French UN bandwagon. Other than this unhealthy dependency on things French, I found the Russians to be more American-like in demeanor than other European peoples (except the Brits of course) with infrastructure complexities (vastness of geography, plentiful resources, etc.) much more in common with US problems than Western Europe.

Seems to me we could really be great allies, if they could just jettison the French envy.

21 posted on 03/24/2003 5:25:23 PM PST by XEHRpa
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To: jospehm20
I do believe our strategy is to economically compensate Russia in exchange for its spheres of influence, while letting them posture as they like.
22 posted on 03/24/2003 5:30:17 PM PST by thoughtomator (Let's Roll!)
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To: Sabertooth
And the plot thickens, as the Axis widens and WWIV slowly grinds on.

The sooner Americans (indeed Europeans as well) get it into their minds we're not fighting for oil, but probably our very lives -- for the life of Western Civilization as we know it -- the sooner we can get on with it.

23 posted on 03/24/2003 5:35:59 PM PST by Coyote
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To: thoughtomator
RE #22

I can tolerate posturing in public while staying away from real actions against the coalition. Many arab regimes do that. But Russians are doing more than such posturing according to this report. Unless they purposely sold rigged equipments to Saddam and told Americans how to elude them, this is a hostile action against American troops.

24 posted on 03/24/2003 5:40:51 PM PST by TigerLikesRooster
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Comment #25 Removed by Moderator

Comment #26 Removed by Moderator

To: Sabertooth
Russia... "the new France."

Well, they have to protect their investments…. all those billions in arms sales and of course the Iraqi oil.

27 posted on 03/24/2003 6:10:50 PM PST by Victoria Delsoul
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To: Sabertooth
Russia's used to this sort of thing. When in lived in Omsk, West Siberia, across the street (Ulitsa Vatutina) from my apartment was a park alongside the Palace of Youth (Dvorets Molodezhi). The small park had a monument, facing the street, with a low wall enscribed in gold "Here are the remains of an unidentified soldier, together with the soil from his grave in Afghanistan."

Behind unknown soldier's monument was a raised platform and a set of columns in a circle, open at the top with numerous plaques. There was no explanation, just plaques bearing these dates and places:

Algiers, 1962-1964
Egypt, 1962-3, 1967-75
Syria, 1967-70, 1972-73
Yemen, 1962-63, 1967-1969
Syria/Lebanon, 1982

Laos, 1960-3, 1964-68, 1969-70
Vietnam, 1961-1974
Cambodia, 1970

China, 1924-27, 1937-44, 1945, 1946-1949, 1950
Ozero Khasan, 1938
Khalan Gol, 1939
Japan, 1945
North Korea, 1950-53
Ozero Damanskiy and Ozero Zhalansh Kol, 1969

Finland, 1939-40
Hungary, 1956
Czechslovakia, 1968
Yugoslavia, 1993-95

Cuba, 1962

Mozambique, 1967-69, 1970-75
Bangladesh, 1972-73
Angola, 1975-1979
Ethiopia, 1977-1979

Afghanistan, 1979-1989

I suppose soon they'll add a plaque reading "Iraq, 2003."

28 posted on 03/24/2003 7:02:46 PM PST by struwwelpeter (abdulla, tamozhnya daet dobro!)
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To: Coyote
" Axis widens and WWIV slowly grinds on."

What happened to 3?
29 posted on 03/24/2003 7:16:43 PM PST by Bulldogs22
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To: Sabertooth
It would be cool if we could "wild weasel" the jamming signals.
30 posted on 03/24/2003 8:25:45 PM PST by AdA$tra (All we are saying give war a chance)
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To: Sabertooth
The United States believes Russian private sector technicians...

If this is indeed the case, can they be killed as enemy combatants?

31 posted on 03/24/2003 9:40:29 PM PST by Sir Francis Dashwood (LET'S ROLL!)
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To: Bulldogs22
" Axis widens and WWIV slowly grinds on."

What happened to 3?

The Third World has been at war for some time now...

32 posted on 03/24/2003 9:46:56 PM PST by Sir Francis Dashwood (LET'S ROLL!)
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To: Sabertooth
Our president pushed an agreement through our senate to reduce our arsenal by several thousand nuclear warheads.

One way to dispose of them would be as a suppository for pooty-poot.

I leave it to the president to name the op.

33 posted on 03/24/2003 9:50:54 PM PST by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: Victoria Delsoul
Well, they have to protect their investments

It's looking like Iraq is the investment.

34 posted on 03/25/2003 2:09:39 AM PST by Sabertooth
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To: Sabertooth


How are you tooth?

35 posted on 10/27/2004 9:15:55 PM PDT by ApesForEvolution (You will NEVER convince me that Muhammadanism isn't a veil for MASS MURDERS. Save your time...)
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