From the Open-Publishing Calendar
From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Indybay Feature
Related Categories: U.S. | Anti-War
If Saddam Guilty, Rumsfeld Guilty (2) Tambien!!
by No Double Standards (Here) Aqui!!
Tuesday Nov 7th, 2006 12:57 PM
Following Saddam's guilty verdict, we need to investigate Donald Rumsfeld as Saddam's acomplice as the knowing supplier of chemical weapons that fueled Saddam's genocide..
We need to remind voters today that a significant member of the GW Bush regime supplied Saddam with chemical weapons for several years while a special envoy during the Reagan regime. This member is none other than Donald Rumsfeld, and the knowledge was available to him that Saddam was using these weapons to attack the Kurds and Iranian Shias along the Iran/Iraq border..

Previous article in commondreams provides background info;

"Five years before Saddam Hussein’s now infamous 1988 gassing of the Kurds, a key meeting took place in Baghdad that would play a significant role in forging close ties between Saddam Hussein and Washington. It happened at a time when Saddam was first alleged to have used chemical weapons. The meeting in late December 1983 paved the way for an official restoration of relations between Iraq and the US, which had been severed since the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.

With the Iran-Iraq war escalating, President Ronald Reagan dispatched his Middle East envoy, a former secretary of defense, to Baghdad with a hand-written letter to Iraqi President Saddam Hussein and a message that Washington was willing at any moment to resume diplomatic relations.

That envoy was Donald Rumsfeld.

Rumsfeld’s December 19-20, 1983 visit to Baghdad made him the highest-ranking US official to visit Iraq in 6 years. He met Saddam and the two discussed “topics of mutual interest,” according to the Iraqi Foreign Ministry. “[Saddam] made it clear that Iraq was not interested in making mischief in the world,” Rumsfeld later told The New York Times. “It struck us as useful to have a relationship, given that we were interested in solving the Mideast problems.”

Just 12 days after the meeting, on January 1, 1984, The Washington Post reported that the United States “in a shift in policy, has informed friendly Persian Gulf nations that the defeat of Iraq in the 3-year-old war with Iran would be ‘contrary to U.S. interests’ and has made several moves to prevent that result.”

In March of 1984, with the Iran-Iraq war growing more brutal by the day, Rumsfeld was back in Baghdad for meetings with then-Iraqi Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz. On the day of his visit, March 24th, UPI reported from the United Nations: “Mustard gas laced with a nerve agent has been used on Iranian soldiers in the 43-month Persian Gulf War between Iran and Iraq, a team of U.N. experts has concluded... Meanwhile, in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, U.S. presidential envoy Donald Rumsfeld held talks with Foreign Minister Tarek Aziz (sic) on the Gulf war before leaving for an unspecified destination.”

read on @;

In addition, Rumsfeld knowingly subjected soldiers in the U.S. military with exposure to radioactive depleted uranium, known since before Desert Storm to be responsible for cancer and birth defects in soldiers..

However, any knowledge of DU effects on human health were learned outside of the U.S. or by private doctors. The U.S. military and the VA remain closed to any scientific evidence that shows proof of DU's health dangers, and refuse to conduct any accurate tests on their own..

Military Families Speak Out about lack of government research on DU;

"Fifteen years after it was first used in battle, there is only one U.S. government study monitoring veterans exposed to depleted uranium.

Number of Soldiers in the survey: 32. Number of Soldiers in both Iraq wars: more than 900,000.

The study group's size is controversial - far too small, say experts including Fahey - and so are the findings of the voluntary, Baltimore-based study.

It has found "no clinically significant" health effects from depleted uranium exposure in the study subjects, according to its researchers.

Critics say the VA has downplayed participants' health problems, including not reporting one Soldier who developed cancer, and another who developed a bone tumor.

So for now, depleted uranium falls into the quagmire of Gulf War Syndrome, from which no treatment has emerged despite the government's spending of at least $300 million.

About 30 percent of the 700,000 men and women who served in the first Gulf War still suffer a baffling array of symptoms very similar to those reported by Reed's unit.

Depleted uranium has long been suspected as a possible contributor to Gulf War Syndrome, and in the mid-90s, veterans helped push the military into tracking Soldiers exposed to it.

But for all their efforts, what they got in the end was a questionnaire dispensed to homeward-bound Soldiers asking about mental health, nightmares, losing control, exposure to dangerous and radioactive chemicals.

But, the veterans persisted, how would Soldiers know they'd been exposed? Radiation is invisible, tasteless, and has no smell. And what exhausted, homesick, war-addled Soldier would check a box that would only send him or her to a military medical center to be poked and prodded and questioned and tested?

It will take years to determine how depleted uranium affected Soldiers from this war. After Vietnam, veterans, in numbers that grew with the passage of time, complained of joint aches, night sweats, bloody feces, migraine headaches, unexplained rashes and violent behavior; some developed cancers.

It took more than 25 years for the Pentagon to acknowledge that Agent Orange - a corrosive defoliant used to melt the jungles of Vietnam and flush out the enemy - was linked to those sufferings.

It took 40 years for the military to compensate sick World War II vets exposed to massive blasts of radiation during tests of the atomic bomb.

In 2002, Congress voted to not let that happen again.

It established the Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses - comprised of scientists, physicians and veterans advocates. It reports to the secretary of Veterans Affairs.

Its mandate is to judge all research and all efforts to treat Gulf War Syndrome patients against a single standard: Have sick Soldiers been made better?

The answer, according to the committee, is no.

"Regrettably, after four years of operation neither the Committee nor (the) VA can report progress toward this goal," stated its December 2005 report. "Research has not produced effective treatments for these conditions nor shown that existing treatments are significantly effective."

read on @;

Others, including former U.S. military physicist Doug Rokke, MD, provide pages of scientific data on DU's health dangers, yet are ignored despite their experience in the military..

Doug Rokke describes his struggle with DU exposure and getting medical tests to be acknowledged by the VA;

"We did all this work. We put everything together. I put a 40-hour training program together—tier 1,2, and 3. I wrote, directed, and acted in two videos. I was the technical adviser for about three more. And we had the best education and training program, with video support, they could be produced for the Department of Defense. And actually, I had officers from England, Australia, Canada, and Germany involved. NATO countries all approved this stuff [referring to the training program.]

Well, the stuff all got shelved because they didn't want the troops to know the health and environmental effects of the uranium munitions. Because, when I did to work as the army's expert, I reached one simple conclusion. I can't clean it up; and I can't provide medical care; and the army will not dedicate the amount of time necessary for education and training to make sure people can safely operate it.

When I went and as the director of the DU project, my total intention was to ensure that the military could use uranium munitions in combat, simply because the job is to kill and destroy. And what I found out, when I did their research, is that you can't use them because you can't clean up and you can't do the medical. I reached that conclusion and I told him so. I can guarantee you that they didn't like that conclusion coming from their expert. They were really, really unhappy.

So, or putting all this stuff together. We got training directive after order after order, all the way up to the deputy secretary of Defense, or during the education and training to be done. And it's never been done. We got order after order or during medical care for everybody. And it's not been done.

In 1994, while I was director of the DU project, the U.S. Department of Energy finally, even though the army refused, and the department of Veterans Affairs refused to do it, did a radio bioassay on me personally. They didn't bother to tell the army they were doing it. They just did it because we're working at a U.S. Department of Energy site-Nevada Test Site, Mercury, Nevada.

They get the test results back in January 26, 1995, that I personally was excreting uranium at 432 micrograms per liter urine. That's well over 1300 micrograms per day. They never bother to tell me for 2 1/2 years. Another reason they knew, is when I went in for my physical when I went back on active-duty. They found all the respiratory and the calcified granulomas, which is the radiation scar tissue [from the picture that Leuren held up of a "Hot Particle in Lung Tissue

I'm trying to get education and training done. I can't get it done. And trying to get medical care done for the friendly-fire casualties. The can't get it done. I'm trying to get environmental cleanup. I wrote to plan, and I can't get it done."

read on @;

For these primary reasons, people are demanding a war crimes tribunal to try Rumsfeld for his role in supplying Saddam with weapons..

In addition we demand the immediate withdrawal of US military from Iraq and a war crimes tribunal for the GW Bush regime for their illegal invasion of Iraq..