Skip to main content

We all knew the Republicans were depraved, evil SOBs per their recent murder of 1 million Iraqis but now a document has come out which reveals a pattern of such behavior; Reagan Republicans of yesteryear, who were obviously just as depraved as George W Republicans of today, prioritized trade with Saddam Hussein over punishing him for gassing the Kurds:

Declassified U.S. government documents show that while Saddam Hussein was gassing Iraqi Kurds, the U.S. opposed punishing Iraq with a trade embargo because it was cultivating Iraq as an ally against Iran and as a market for U.S. farm exports.

According to Peter Galbraith, then an idealistic Senate staffer determined to stop Hussein from committing genocide, the Reagan administration "got carried away with their own propaganda. They began to believe that Saddam Hussein could be a reliable partner."

http://www.cnn.com/...

Here's the document itself:

Date: March 3, 1988
Subject: Iraq's Foreign Policy: Deeper into the Mainstream
Summary: Anticipating an end to the Iran-Iraq war, a State Department official is optimistic that continued ties between the United States and Iraq will lead Saddam Hussein "deeper into the mainstream." The author concludes that "fears of Iraq's aggression seem exaggerated." Two weeks later, Iraqi forces attack Kurdish civilians in Halabja with poisonous gas.

Date: December 29, 1988
Subject: Export-Import Financing for Iraq
Summary: In the closing days of the Reagan administration, the State Department's top human rights official argues that continued financial aid to Iraq "can simply not be squared with our worldwide human rights policy." However, Assistant Secretary of State Richard Murphy counters that U.S. financial ties with Iraq have "far greater use with Baghdad as a carrot than as a stick." A year and a half later, Iraq invades Kuwait.  

http://www.cnn.com/...

I won't hold my breath that justice will ever be served to these thugs but at least a pattern of behavior is emerging of the evil committed at the hands of Dick Cheney Republicans for "trade."  (Or rather whoring for companies that contribute to Republicans.)

Originally posted to a gnostic on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:16 PM PST.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  this makes me wonder why someone would (6+ / 0-)

    want to be a republican...I can't imagine supporting someone who did this.

    I dislike Harold Ford even more every time I listen to him on MSNBC...what an asshole.

    by larryww on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:21:43 PM PST

  •  I thought this was (9+ / 0-)

    common knowledge?
    And, didn't Reagan send a contingent of midwestern members of congress to Iraq after the Kurds were gassed to assure them the US was dedicated to trade with Iraq and there "interanl affairs" were not our business? I'm pretty sure Bob Dole was one of the people that went on that trip.

  •  These people lack all semblence (6+ / 0-)

    of morality. Other than a high regard for greed, Republicans really believe in nothing at all. This story might not be surprising, but it is still disgusting.

    The weak in courage is strong in cunning-William Blake

    by beltane on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:26:38 PM PST

  •  Just Put This (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wader, TMOX

    In the open thread.

    And even though this is about 'Declassified Documents', for those of us who actually knew where Iraq and Iran were, prior to '91 and than some even had to find it in the lead up to 'shock and awe', and were very knowing on the subject of who Saddam was and the dealings with even before raygun, these just confirmed the already understood and voiced.

    But hey who listens to 'Focus Groups'!!!

    "For all the GOP's patriotic imagery and testosterone-infused rhetoric,Results: Failed Policies Across the Spectrum

    by jimstaro on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:29:00 PM PST

  •  The image of Rumsfeld shaking (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro, japhyryder79

    Saddam's gand

    Could be termed as a dead give away.

    Literature is strewn with the wreckage of those who have minded beyond reason the opinion of others. ~Virginia Woolf

    by LaFeminista on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:30:24 PM PST

  •  Was Halabja ever a Secret? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wader, jimstaro, C Barr, JML9999

    My understanding is that there was evidence of both Iranian AND Iraqi attacks there.  I guess I don't see any real revelations here, in spite of the fact that this is all "recently declassified."

    Hussein was always a bad guy, there was just a time when he was Our bad guy.

    •  But we keep backing Bad Guys (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jimstaro, TooFolkGR

      and it keeps biting us on the Butt

      Shah of Iran
      Duvaliers in Haiti
      Marcos in The Philippines
      and on and on

      The GOP has resorted to Cannibalism. Please send Condiments to GOP HQ

      by JML9999 on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:35:18 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yes, I have heard credible people (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jimstaro

      say that it was Iran.

      moderation in everything ... including moderation

      by C Barr on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:57:30 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  The CIA (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        C Barr

        Had it on their site and were saying, for a long time, they thought it was more Iran than Iraq, than, if memory correct, around the war drum beating it was scrubbed!

        "For all the GOP's patriotic imagery and testosterone-infused rhetoric,Results: Failed Policies Across the Spectrum

        by jimstaro on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 01:08:36 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  It was not Iran (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jimstaro, C Barr

        Stephen Peletierre, Reagan/Bush I era thug, promoted the idea that it was Iran in order to justify continued support for Saddam through 1990.  I am writing this from Sulaimanniyah, about two hours away from Halabja.  Nobody - and I mean exactly nobody - in Halabja or in Iraqi Kurdistan think that it was Iran.  The Iranians actually filmed the attack, and Iranians entered Halabja with Kurdish peshmerga forces immediately after to try to save as many people as possible.  This film has been aired many times on Kurdish TV and you can see the Iraqi airforce planes attacking the town.  

        There was a pattern and practice of Iraqi chemical weapons use against Iraqi Kurdish civilians.  There were attacks in the Balisan valley, Merga Sur, and other locations as well.  HRW registered more than 20 chemical weapons attacks.  However, most of them were not fatal as the landscape and winds often rendered chemical weapons less useful.  In Balisan for example, the people were on the sides of the valley and the chemicals were heavier than air and just killed some sheep and goats in the valley floor.

        "The red is going out. It's getting more bluer."

        by ivorybill on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 01:33:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  It's realpolitik (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro, C Barr

    Reagan ignored the event because he judged balancing Iran/Iraq as the more important issue.

    And let's step back a second. We have all (rightly) hammered Bush for going into Iraq and disrupting that balance. So what should Reagan have done? Invaded Iraq? Imposed crippling sanctions? I would bet more than a few people here opposed the sanctions that Clinton maintained on Iraq in the 90s.

    And look at it from another angle. Would anyone care to argue that the Iranians are better off today as a whole because of Carter's stance on human rights and not supporting the Shah?

    •  Dave (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      esquimaux, Scientician, C Barr, chrome327

      It goes back further than raygun, We, the CIA, had Saddam on the payroll and helped in putting him in power, as we also knew him to be the street thug he was!!

      "For all the GOP's patriotic imagery and testosterone-infused rhetoric,Results: Failed Policies Across the Spectrum

      by jimstaro on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:35:50 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I am not arguing that (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jimstaro, C Barr

        Nor am I saying that Reagan was a saint and could do no wrong. What I am saying is that Reagan's key concern was maintaining balance in the Middle East, which is also the concern of many Democrats today.

        The author is suggesting Reagan should have done something about the gassings. Fine, but it has to be noted that all the things he could have done are things we either hammer Bush on today (invasion) or were protested by Democrats in the past (sanctions).

    •  Of course! (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jimstaro, ivorybill, dave3172, C Barr

      In answering your question,

      "Would anyone care to argue that the Iranians are better off today as a whole because of Carter's stance on human rights and not supporting the Shah?"

      I ask that these facts be considered:

      1. Their government is now local, not controlled through a puppet from a powerful country on the other side of the world.
      1. Being local, their government is much more easily subject to regime change from within the body politic, hopefully in a manner as peaceful as happened to the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, but by force if necessary when enough of the population is sufficiently fed up with the current regime.

      If it was able to happen in the USSR, it can happen in Iran as well. I advocate patience and political evangelism over direct military pressure from some country that the bulk of their population hates more than they hate their own regime.

      •  I appreciate that answer. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jimstaro, C Barr, sjbob

        I also happen to agree with you on both points. I would argue, though, that until now, overall the Iranians are worse off. Especially women. You have the repression of the Shah's regime married to religious intolerance. Even with local control, overall they are still subject to a religious dictatorship that allows even fewer basic rights than the Shah did.

        I agree, though, that a majority of the people dislike their government and our job now has to be to encourage them through political and cultural contacts to work to overturn the current dictatorship.

        •  Women are far worse off in Saudi Arabia (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jimstaro, sjbob

          And the rights of most Iranian women - rural and poor - were if anything worse under the Shah.  Maternal mortality has gone down and female enrollment in universities has gone up.  I'm not justifying the excesses of the Islamic Republic, but the Shah's reign was not a halcyon time for women unless you were a daughter of the upper class in Iran.

          "The red is going out. It's getting more bluer."

          by ivorybill on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 01:35:59 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  We have to stop making "deals" with (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro

    countries that do not aspire to transparent democracy for their own people.

    I mean like backing a thug because we have a common enemy.

    Blowback it's called.

  •  Why am I not surprised...more to come... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro
  •  We installed Saddam to do just that.... (8+ / 0-)

    The whole point of our intelligence community installing him was to keep the disparate ethnic factions at bay by hook or crook. Iraq is a heavily balkanized country and we needed someone with ruthless enough to keep them all in line while the oil flowed.

    Kind of sad really, but this has been our m.o. for decades. We don't get upset with these bastards until they stop playing ball, then all of a sudden they are ruthless killers that must be taken out. Sickening.

    •  True (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dillonfence, jimstaro, Bouldergeist

      Just look at Mubarak in Egypt. The only difference between him and Hussein is that he is smart enough to know you need the trappings of democracy to satisfy the global community. That and he isn't a homicidal nutbar.

    •  We did not "install" Saddam (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dave3172

      We supported him for very cynical reasons, but Saddam rose by guile and brutality through the  ranks of the Ba'ath Party.  We may have supported the Ba'ath in the overthrow of Abd al-Karim Qasim in 1963, but Saddam did not take over the Ba'ath Party until about 1972 when he gradually seized pwer by marginalizing and then executing his rivals for power.  

      It is a fiction to say that Saddam is an American creation.  We enabled him; we did not make him.  That ignores a whole lot of Iraqi history.

      "The red is going out. It's getting more bluer."

      by ivorybill on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 01:38:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Nope (0+ / 0-)

        We helped Install him as well as the CIA paying him and were instrumental in the two coups that preceded, than said nothing as he purged the suspected enemies!

        "For all the GOP's patriotic imagery and testosterone-infused rhetoric,Results: Failed Policies Across the Spectrum

        by jimstaro on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 02:19:07 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  In other shocking headlines... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro, chrome327

    We have been in a recession since Dec. 2007.

    "I think I speak for most Americans when I say, anybody mind if he starts a little early? Would that be a problem?" - David Letterman

    by RichM on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:44:01 PM PST

  •  U.S. ignores a lot for trade, i.e. China. nt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro, chrome327

    "...America can change. Our union can be perfected." President-Elect Barack Obama

    by Jack Dublin on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:48:54 PM PST

  •  Nice to see evidence of an assertion I made (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro

    all along in my opposition to the Iraq War.  The plight of the Kurds was a favorite talking point of proponents of the War.  Attacking that talking point using their "Beloved" was often effective.

    The only thing we have to fear is fear itself - FDR. Obama Nation. -6.13 -6.15

    by ecostar on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:49:47 PM PST

  •  further information (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro

    "Well, I think that - let me say generally that Sen. Obama doesn't come to this debate with a lot of credibility." -- Joe Lieberman

    by GW Chimpzilla on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 12:52:00 PM PST

  •  What?! Saint Reagan did something wrong?!? (3+ / 0-)

    (-8.00, -7.18) I got my country back!

    by Arken on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 01:01:28 PM PST

  •  A list of companies that did business with Iraq (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro, a gnostic

    during the Reagan years..lest we forget..

    AT&T
    AL HADDAD ENTERPRISES, INC.
    ALCOLAC INTERNATIONAL
    AMERICAN TYPE CULTURE COLLECTION
    ASSOCIATED INSTRUMENTS DISTRIBUTORS, INC.
    AXEL ELECTRONICS
    BANCA NAZIONALE DEL LAVORO
    BECHTEL GROUP
    BREEZEVALE, INC.
    CANBERRA INDUSTRIES
    CARL SCHENCK AG
    CARL ZEISS
    CATERPILLAR, INC.
    COMTEC INTERNATIONAL, INC.
    CONSARC
    COPELAND INTERNATIONAL, INC.
    DATA GENERAL CORP
    DEKTOR COUNTERINTELLIGENCE AND SECURITY, INC.
    DOW CHEMICAL
    DRESSER CONSTRUCTION AND EQUIPMENT
    DUPONT
    E G & G PRINCETON APPLIED RESEARCH
    EASTMAN KODAK CO.
    ELECTRONICS ASSOCIATES, INC.
    ENTRADE INTERNATIONAL, LTD.
    EVAPCO
    FINNIGAN MAT US
    FOXBORO COMPANY
    GERBER SYSTEMS TECHNOLOGY
    GORMAN-RUPP
    HARDINGE BROTHERS
    HEWLETT-PACKARD
    HIPOTRONICS
    HONEYWELL
    HUGHES HELICOPTER
    IBM
    INTERNATIONAL IMAGING SYSTEMS
    INTERNATIONAL SIGNAL AND CONTROL
    IONICS
    KENNAMETAL, INC.
    LEYBOLD VACUUM SYSTEMS
    LINCOLN ELECTRIC CO.
    LITTON INDUSTRIES
    LUMMUS CREST, INC.
    MBB HELICOPTER CORP.
    MACK TRUCKS, INC.
    MAHO AG
    MATRIX CHURCHILL CORP.
    McNEIL AKRON, INC.
    MEMPHIS INTERNATIONAL, INC.
    MILLER ELECTRIC
    MOUSE MASTER
    NCR CORPORATION
    NRM CORP.
    NORWALK CO.
    NU KRAFT MERCANTILE CORP.
    PERKIN-ELMER CORP.
    PHILLIPS EXPORT
    POSI SEAL, INC.
    PRESRAY CORP.
    PURE AIRE
    REDLAKE IMAGING CORP.
    REXON TECHNOLOGY CORP.
    ROCKWELL INTERNATIONAL CORP.
    ROTEC INDUSTRIES, INC.
    SACKMAN ASSOCIATES
    SCIENTIFIC ATLANTA
    SCIENTIFIC DESIGN CO., INC.
    SEMETEX
    SERVAAS, INC.
    SIEMENS CORP.
    SIP CORP.
    SPECTRAL DATA CORP.
    SPECTRA PHYSICS
    SPERRY CORP.
    SULLAIRE CORP.
    SWISSCO MANAGEMENT GROUP, INC.
    TECHNICAL COMMUNICATIONS CORP.
    TEKTRONIX
    TELEDYNE WAH CHANG
    THERMO JARRELL ASH CORP.
    TI COATING
    TRADING AND INVESTMENT CORP.
    UNION CARBIDE
    UNISYS CORP.
    VEECO INSTRUMENTS, INC.
    WILD MAGNAVOX SATELLITE SURVEY
    WILTRON
    XYZ OPTIONS, INC.
    YORK INTERNATIONAL CORP.
    ZETA LABORATORIES

  •  Where were the journalists? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro

    and what did they say at the time? The American press blamed Iran for the barely mentioned,  in the American press , Siege of Mecca...KNOWING..it was not Iranians but Saudis who attempted the coup against the Royal Family.

    Saudi was cut off from the world during the episode..and not a word. So as one of the older Kossacks, this does not surprise me at all. I continue to ask why was the MSM of the day silent?

    Think Tank. "A place where people are paid to think by the makers of tanks" Naomi Klein.

    by ohcanada on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 01:10:41 PM PST

  •  No news here. Well known at the time... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro

    Though, the memos do document the banality of our policy at the time.

    Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

    by FischFry on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 01:12:52 PM PST

  •  and yet how many times have I heard... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro

    And yet how many times have I heard some Republican I'm arguing with about the Iraq war say, "But Saddam gassed his own people!  Bush is a hero, blah blah blah."

    Republicans are such a bunch of fakes.  They'll aid and abet all kinds of things that they'll later claim to oppose.  Reagan's a saint and he turned a blind eye to the gassing, and now Bush is a saint for not turning a blind eye to it.

    Republicans have truly got no integrity whatsoever.  

    "Does anybody know what the difference between a bulldog and a hockey mom is? The bulldog gets vetted!" - Bob Barr

    by Front Toward Enemy on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 01:43:00 PM PST

  •  not trade, Oil. (0+ / 0-)

    the iraqi's only export oil, it's their only export.

    We wanted their oil, we were willing to support
    genocide for it.

    Ask the Biafrans.

    George Bush is Living proof of the axiom "Never send a boy to do a man's job" E -2.25 S -4.10

    by nathguy on Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 11:19:18 PM PST

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site