Concerning MaineShark's above comments on Saddam and Iraq:
Saddam had been in bed with the U.S. government for quite some time--ever since Saddam was a CIA assassin in Iraq during the 1950s. The U.S. government groomed him for his position as the leader of Iraq (in the U.S.-supported-and-funded Ba'ath party), as he showed good leadership skills and an ability to work closely with the U.S. government during his period as an assassin for the Ba'ath party. In one of his assassination assignments Saddam was shot in the leg--this occured during Saddam's attempted assassination of Iraqi Prime Minister Abdul Karim Qassim in 1959 (the Wikipedia page http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saddam
gives a few details of this incident).
The Ba'athists finally came into power in a bloody U.S.-funded coup in 1963. As the BBC recounts:
The coup that brought the Ba'ath Party to power in 1963 was celebrated by the United States.
The CIA had a hand in it. They had funded the Ba'ath Party--of which Saddam Hussein was a young member--when it was in opposition.
US diplomat James Akins served in the Baghdad Embassy at the time.
"I knew all the Ba'ath Party leaders and I liked them," he told me.
"The CIA were definitely involved in that coup. We saw the rise of the Ba'athists as a way of replacing a pro-Soviet government with a pro-American one and you don't get that chance very often.
"Sure, some people were rounded up and shot but these were mostly communists so that didn't bother us".
("Saddam's parallel universe," Allan Little, BBC, January, 2003 http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/low/programmes/from_our_own_correspondent/2694885.stm
Saddam had always been the U.S. government's boy, especially during the Iran-Iraq war. So at that point it was only natural that he took April Glaspie at her word.
A week before the August 2, 1990 invasion of Kuwait by Iraq, Saddam Hussein met with April Glaspie, then America's ambassador to Iraq. It was the last high-level contact between the two countries before Iraq went to war. From a translation of a transcript of the meeting, released that September:
"We have no opinion on your Arab-Arab conflicts," the transcript reports Glaspie saying, "such as your disagreement with Kuwait. Secretary [of State James] Baker has directed me to emphasize the instruction ... that Kuwait is not associated with America."
For more on that, please see the below articles:
Pearl Harbor in Reverse
Politics & Prose by Jack Beatty
The Atlantic Monthly:http://www.theatlantic.com/unbound/polipro/pp2002-09-25.htm
Glaspie told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee at an open hearing that the Iraqi transcript of the meeting, which depicts her as acting in a fawning manner toward Saddam Hussein, and as appearing to indicate that the United States did not care how Iraq settled its border dispute with Kuwait, was doctored. But Senate staffers say that the Iraqi transcript and her own cable of the event "track almost perfectly." Glaspie, they and other observers conclude, was the ultimate staff person--obsessed with the diplomatic process to the point where she couldn't accept that sometimes it is better for the process to collapse than for it to continue.
The Atlantic Monthly:http://www.theatlantic.com/unbound/flashbks/saudiara/kaplan.htm
[...] based on what U.S. ambassador April Glaspie had told him a week earlier, when she said, "We have no opinions on the Arab-Arab conflicts, like your border disagreement with Kuwait."
Angry journalists confronted Glaspie, clutching copies of the transcript of her session with Saddam, accusing her of giving him carte blanche to take over Kuwait. At one of these sessions a rattled Glaspie replied, "I didn't think . . . the Iraqis were going to take all of Kuwait."
Glaspie soon was removed from her post.
--CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) News:http://cbc.ca/news/indepth/background/gulf_war.html
The below San Francisco Bay Guardian article is a shorter version of an article by Murray Waas that appeared in the Village Voice on January 22, 1991:
Who lost Kuwait?
When Saddam Hussein was obviously preparing to invade Kuwait, why did the U.S. send signals that it would not interfere?
By Murray Waas
January 30, 1991 http://www.sfbg.com/gulfwar/013091.html
First the rhetoric about the second invasion of Iraq was because Iraq was supposed to have been involved in the 9/11 attacks, but absolutely no evidence of that could be produced so that line was dropped. Then it was because Iraq has weapons of mass destruction, but no such weapons have been found, so that line has been dropped. Now it's about "liberating" the Iraqi people--how absolutely selfless and thoughtful Bush & Co. are to spend billions of U.S. tax-payers' money and sacrifice hundreds of U.S. soldiers' lives in the effort to free the Iraqi people by taking their personal firearms away. I suppose the next thing Bush & Co. are going to do is sell all their worldly possessions, donate the proceeds to charity and join a monastary.
But anyone parrotting the "liberation" line is either a truly ignorant person or a lying sycophant--the same goes with the other lines, as well. This war has not the slightest thing in the world to do with "liberating" the Iraqi people--other than liberating them from their oil reserves and strategic military real-estate. We have this Presidential administration's own official statements regarding their intent to invade Iraq made almost exactly one year before the 9/11 attacks, saying in their official policy report that they would still invade Iraq even if Saddam and his regime no longer existed. So this invasion has not the slightest thing in the world to do with Saddam or whatever political system was in operation in that country--the U.S. was going to invade Iraq no matter what.
Below are particularly relevant excerpts from the document "Rebuilding America's Defenses--Strategy, Forces and Resources For a New Century: A Report of The Project for the New American Century," September 2000 ( http://www.newamericancentury.org/RebuildingAmericasDefenses.pdf
Page 14 (or 26 in the PDF browser):
"While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein."
Page 17 (or 29 in the PDF browser):
"From an American perspective, the value of such bases would endure even should Saddam pass from the scene."
Page 51 (or 63 in the PDF browser):
"Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event--like a new Pearl Harbor."
And they got their "new Pearl Harbor" twelve months later. How very fortunate for them and their globe-dominating "Project."
Below are the June 3, 1997 signers of the Project for the New American Century's Statement of Principles ( http://www.newamericancentury.org/statementofprinciples.htm
William J. Bennett
Eliot A. Cohen
Fred C. Ikle
I. Lewis Libby
Peter W. Rodman
Stephen P. Rosen
Henry S. Rowen
"U.S. Harbored Terrorists to Bolster Its Case," Matt Bivens, Moscow Times, March 15, 2004, Page 8 http://www.themoscowtimes.com/stories/2004/03/15/007.html
"Secret Bechtel Documents Reveal: Yes, It Is About Oil," David Lindorff, CounterPunch, April 9, 2003 http://www.counterpunch.org/lindorff04092003.html
"Crude Vision: How Oil Interests Obscured US Government Focus On Chemical Weapons Use by Saddam Hussein," Jim Vallette, Steve Kretzmann and Daphne Wysham, Sustainable Energy and Economy Network/Institute for Policy Studies, 2nd edition: August 13, 2002 http://www.ips-dc.org/crudevisionhttp://www.seen.org/pages/reports/crude.shtml
Saddam had always been the U.S. government's boy. All the way from his youth in the Ba'ath party, through the Iran-Iraq war, and even all the way up to his invasion of Kuwait when U.S. Ambassador to Iraq April Glaspie in effect gave Saddam the official U.S. government green-light to invade Kuwai, which she emphasized came directly from Secretary of State James Baker. So the U.S. government played Saddam like a fiddle--they created the Saddam we know today by putting him in power, and then set him up to take a fall so that the U.S. government could have a pretext to invade Iraq in order to set up military bases in Iraq so as to serve as a platform for invading the rest of the Arab world (as outlined in the PNAC document). Saddam was a sucker for trusting the U.S. government.
So the U.S. government loves to cite how ruthless and bloody Saddam is, yet in doing so conveniently fails to mention that Saddam qua dictator of Iraq is entirely a creation of the U.S. government. The U.S. government had always supported Saddam, until Saddam no longer figured into the U.S. government's plans for Iraq (as Saddam no doubt would have had major problems with the concept of U.S. military bases on Iraq soil, not to mention that the U.S. government wouldn't have had a pretext to establish such bases without first having set Saddam up to take a fall).
So in playing Saddam like a fiddle the U.S. government so also played the common masses of the world like a fiddle. That is to say, it's all a scam.