In 1916 Hussein launched what the West known as The Arab revolt in opposition to the Ottomans. Britain guarantees him the institution of an Arab kingdom whereas they secretly negotiate with France to share the spoils. Written in 1916, modified to the benefit of the British, the Sykes-Picot agreements presided over the sharing of the stays of the Ottoman Empire and the creation of synthetic states. Even at this time the physiognomy of the Center East inherits this settlement. Arthur Balfour, head of British diplomacy, espoused the Zionist reason for a Jewish residence in Israel. All commitments couldn’t be honored, the Arab trigger paid a excessive value. Hussein sees his dream disintegrate. His son Fayçal returned victorious to Damascus in 1918 was expelled in 1920 by the French. In compensation we set up it on the throne of Iraq. Abdallah, Hussein's different son sees himself inheriting Transjordan, a “buffer state” created by the Secretary of State for the Colonies Winston Churchill, which was to separate the 2 mandates: Palestine and Iraq for the English , Lebanon and Syria for the French. ” The disappearance of the Ottoman Empire, removed from having favored the liberation of the Arabs, had aggravated their subordination to Western imperialism. The Arab world was nearly below European domination “1.
In 1921, to legitimize the muse of Fayçal, the English organized a referendum. All different purposes being banned, this one obtains 96% of the channels. The Hashemite Kingdom having no base in Iraq, it’s on the minority of former Ottoman Sunni Arab officers that energy will probably be based mostly.
Through the First World Struggle, the English started to rule Mesopotamia as an Indian province. That’s to say with English officers and native subordinates. However from 1857 in India and 1882 in Africa the English needed to face revolts. That they had realized classes and doctrines from it, notably that of indigenous sovereignty, of the protectorate. Acknowledge the native sovereign, who in trade cedes a part of his authority to imperial energy. The protectorate makes it potential to anticipate two criticisms: one native (criticism of the occupation), the opposite in metropolitan France (criticism of imperialism). Thus the English saved in Iraq, the Ottoman administration and created from scratch a Emir: Fayçal. However in 1920, the occupation of Mesopotamia value the English 50 million kilos and the criticisms of the Laborers turned increasingly more virulent. Therefore the creation of mandates. The English managed to arrange a corporation that will final till the late 1950s.
“This nation doesn’t exist” stated its king of Iraq. 16% of Arab Sunnis lead 55% of Shiites and 25% of Kurds. From 1921 to 1958, the date of the coup that overthrew Fayçal, instability reigned. The monarchy will know 58 ministerial cupboards and almost a dozen conspiracies from army circles labored by Arab nationalism.
From independence to the arrival of Ba’ath
In 1958 in Baghdad troopers impressed by the Nasser coup in Egypt overthrew the Hashemite monarchy. The motion of free officers ends the royal Iraq established in 1921 by the British on the ruins of the Ottoman Empire and offers beginning to a Republic. However Normal Qasim, who participated within the coup, now prime minister, is approaching the united states dangerously within the eyes of the People. The very fact is that the communists who’ve been hiding up to now since 1934 can resume their propaganda. ” All fashionable democracies, led by the united states, hastened to open embassies in Baghdad2“. Iraq was taking the trail of ” progressive democracy “. ” It could be an exaggeration to say that it was a communist nation. However the Communists had lots of affect “Stated the previous American ambassador to Iraqthree. The Baath social gathering seeks to make a residing. In 1959, a younger officer seeks to assassinate Qasim. It’s Saddam Hussein. Missed assault, he fled injured within the calf, swam throughout the Tiger, disguises himself as a Bedouin and threatens the inhabitants whom he forces to welcome him. To take refuge in Syria.
If the People aren’t hostile in itself to the overthrow of the monarchy, Qasim's coverage begins to fret the CIA. Particularly since this new authorities, which needs to interrupt away from imperialism and overseas interference, is attempting to barter with the oil firms the situations for exploiting Iraqi oil. Confronted with the specific refusal of the majors to renegotiate their contracts, the federal government made the choice to not signal any new agreements.
Any longer, Western firms will not be capable of prospect or purchase new concessions. They must be happy with what they have already got, that’s to say, in a rustic the place infrastructure was comparatively underdeveloped at the moment, zero.5% of Iraqi oilfour.
Nasser's Egypt and Republican Iraq start to harass america. It adopted a sequence of reformist measures, land redistribution, girls's rights, training. And all this clearly goes by way of the redistribution of the advantages of the hire (Suez Canal in Egypt, oil in Iraq). In 1963, a brand new coup d'etat, supported by america, overthrew the putschists of 1958. A coalition of which the Ba’ath social gathering was half and subsequently Saddam Hussein took energy. The CIA, which needs to distance the newly liberated nation from Soviet affect, equipped the listing of Communists to the brand new energy. They are going to be executed the next month. American Ambassador James Akins explains in an interview that when the Ba’ath took energy in 1963 ” we have been very completely happy. They removed lots of communists. Lots of them have been executed, or shot. It was an awesome growth. And issues have opened in Iraq. We’ve got resumed diplomatic relations “5.
Incorrect calculation for the USA. The Ba’ath social gathering that they helped achieve energy will probably be that of their sworn enemy within the 1990s: Saddam Hussein. He’s 32 years previous and can expertise a meteoric rise within the varied army organs of state safety. Within the 1970s, he may have below his orders almost 150,000 individuals, or 1 / 4 of the entire of civil servants, connected to the Ministry of the Inside.
In 1964 the Iraq Nationwide Oil Firm (INOC) was created. Following a 3rd coup, the Ba'ath got here to energy alone in 1968. He was to pursue the coverage of independence and multiply contracts with the Soviets after which the French to coach Iraqi engineers and endow the nation environment friendly working gear. In a couple of years, the INOC’s technical capacities have been enlarged whereas its concessions developed.
Appointed by his cousin the President as vice-president, Saddam Hussein pursued the coverage of independence, resulting in the nationalization of oil in 1972. On the identical time, he signed a treaty of friendship with the united states. With out turning into a satellite tv for pc of Moscow, Saddam trades as a lot with the Soviets (exchanging oil for weapons) as with the French6 and the people7.
However the brand new Iraqi strongman is then on the radar of the Nixon administration and his adviser Henry Kissinger who doesn’t want to see the event of a hegemonic energy on this areaeight and a charismatic chief who may carry the Arabs collectively. By way of the Shah of Iran, the People will then finance the Kurdish revolt in Iraq to weaken the central energy of Baghdad. In an interview9 of 1973, the independence chief Mullah Barzani proposed to go away the Kirkurk oil fields to the People in trade for army help. However for america there isn’t a query of serving to the Kurds to realize independence. It is just a query of instrumentalizing their wrestle to weaken the Iraqi central energy.
The Chatt el-arab
Since 1937, the Chatt El-Arab the delta of the Tiger and the Euphrates resulting in the Persian Gulf is property of Iraq. It’s subsequently a strategic location for the export of petroleum. In 1975, at an OPEC assembly in Algiers, Iraq, anxious to finish the Kurdish revolt, signed an settlement with Iran. Iraq cedes to Iran the japanese financial institution of Chatt el-Arab. In return, the Shah should cease funding the Kurdish insurrection. Arms deliveries cease instantly, and the Iraqi military takes over. 300,000 Kurds will probably be deported to the south of the nation by Saddam Hussein.
The desire to manage the channel of Chatt El-Arab, Iraq's solely maritime window and subsequently scant risk of opening in direction of the Persian Gulf for the export of hydrocarbons will probably be on the origin of one of the vital ineffective conflicts and the deadliest within the Center East, the warfare in Iran-Iraq.
By eliminating his inner enemies, Saddam Hussein will step by step assert his authority. In 1978 he purged the Ba’ath social gathering from its communist elements and henceforth assumed sole energy.
The warfare in opposition to Iran or the containment of the Islamic Revolution
The Iraqi political system, inherited from the British itself inherited from the Ottoman Empire consists of a Sunni minority, which occupies the middle of the nation and assumes political and army energy, numerically dominated by the Kurds within the north and the Shiites within the south . The Iranian revolution of 1979 will resound like a thunderbolt in a rustic the place the Shiites are the bulk.
The very fact is that Iran with its 37 million inhabitants is sort of a juggernaut subsequent to an Iraq 4 occasions smaller in space and populated by solely 13 million individuals. Khomeyni, who since taking energy in Tehran has known as on Iraqi Shiites to revolt in opposition to Saddam, is starting to fret the latter. The Iraqi chief then orders the hunt for activists and clerics whom he accuses of being within the pay of Iran. The scenario worsens, executives of the Ba’ath social gathering are assassinated. Saddam purges and expels 40,000 Shiites to Iran.
However he additionally needs to reap the benefits of the dysfunction which reigned in Iran following the Revolution to recuperate the japanese financial institution of the channel which he needed to cede in 1975 to the Persian neighbor after the Algiers agreements. In July 1979 he turned president and gained full powers.
On the finish of April 1980 in London, thePolitical Group of the Arab Individuals of Arabistan takes about 20 workers of the Iranian Embassy in England hostage. The group claims independence for the Iranian province of Khuzestan. A Shiite province however populated by Arabic in a rustic with a Persian majority. After the Iranian revolution, these Iranian Arabs who take into account themselves victims of Persian racism in Khomeini demand their autonomy and the discharge of prisoners.
That Arabs, whose province has a big opening to the Persian Gulf and oil wells, demand their independence from Iran appears to be blessed bread for Saddam. The calls for of the hostage-taking will develop into a pretext for Iraqi intervention in Iran. It additionally appears that the Iraqi state has given a “enhance” to the hostage takers by bringing their weapons into England through the diplomatic bag of Baghdad.
This occasion was for use as a pretext for Saddam Hussein to declare warfare on Iran, whereas passing the operation, within the eyes of the West, for a respectable liberation of an oppressed individuals. All with out objection from Washington and little doubt with its encouragement.
Whereas the hostage taking of the American Embassy in Tehran10 continues to get slowed down, the US is starting to comprehend that it has misplaced an allied nation within the area. The “Center Jap policeman” is not any extra. The People must search for different companions within the area even when it means forging unnatural alliances. In The Ayatollahs Plot Bani Sadr11 writes that chairman of Carter's safety council met Saddam Hussein in July 1980. At the moment Iraq was nonetheless on the listing of terrorist states12. The 2 males would have seen one another ” to check how america and Iraq may coordinate their actions to oppose “Iran's harmful coverage”13 “. Saddam Hussein, assured, now is aware of that he has the help of the People. All of them need the identical factor: to stem the Islamic Revolution.
After many tensions alongside the border with Iran, Saddam Hussein declared in mid-September 1980 the Algiers agreements of 1975 lapsed: warfare was declared. The primary challenges for the Iraqi regime are, first, the restoration of the Chatt El-Arab space and, second, the annexation of Khuzestan. Since Khuzestan is Iran’s primary oil area, and furthermore, has a big opening on the Persian Gulf, Saddam’s motivation appears clear: oil and the means to export it. The dictator guarantees a lightning warfare. It would final eight years and value the lives of 1.5 million individuals.
Preventing begins within the Chatt al-Arab area and is concentrated within the province of Khuzestan. Iranians bombarding Iraqi oil warehouses on the opposite aspect of the channel whereas Iraqis reply by destroying Iranian refineries. The Basra refinery was destroyed by Iranian fighters made within the USA and led by pilots skilled in america. Kirkuk oil pipelines in northern Iraq are focused. The purpose on each side is to hit oil-related targets and thereby suffocate the opponent economically. However the Iranian army gear, inherited from the partnership between the Shah and america, will be unable to final lengthy with out the upkeep and the spare components of the People.
For the latter, engaged by proxy by way of the financing of the mujahideen, in a warfare in opposition to the united states in Afghanistan, the battle which is opening up in opposition to Iran is a superb alternative to stem the Islamic revolution. And it doesn’t matter if the one main the battle is on the head of a rustic on the listing of states supporting terrorism. Apart from, in 1982, Iraq was faraway from this listing and have become frequentable. Arms retailers, French, American and British flock to Baghdad. In 1985 and 1990, Iraq was the world's largest importer of arms, with 10% of the market. The Gulf monarchies anxious to keep up their management in Islamism will then help Saddam Hussein. Saudi Arabia grants the chief of the Ba’ath social gathering, who’s nonetheless a “secular apostate”, a mortgage of 25 billion dollars. Washington can even enable overseas firms to promote civilian and army “dual-use” merchandise. It was solely years later, with the publication of the report Closing and Complete Report on Chemical Weapons in Iraq that mild will probably be shed on these well-known merchandise. Written by the Iraqis themselves in 1996, on the request of the United Nations and to confirm the progress of the destruction of shares of chemical weapons, the report lists dozens of identified European firms which have traded with Iraq. Lots of of pages of economic transactions the place the names of French, German, Austrian, American, British or Swiss firms seem. Amongst these merchandise are fertilizers, which have been used to make mustard gasoline or sarin gasoline. Saddam Hussein, protected by each the West and the Arab international locations, then has his arms free. He’ll use the chemical weapon in opposition to each the exterior Persian enemy and the interior Kurdish enemy. His cousin, Ali Hassan al-Majid, higher generally known as Ali the chemical, receives full decree by decree to “kill any human or animal” in Iraqi Kurdistan. In direction of the tip of the warfare, energy was unleashed, 180,000 Kurds have been killed.
For Iran, which sees this warfare as “imposed”, the calls for are easy: withdrawal of Iraqi troops, return of refugees to their houses, compensation of injury and elimination of Saddam Hussein. However from 1982, because the lightning warfare promised by Saddam continued to get slowed down, Khomeini's perspective modified. The Iranians are threatening to cross the border, their perspective is not simply defensive.
The opportunity of a Saddam defeat and a Shiite occupation of Iraq frightens the People. The prospect of a “Shiite axis” passing by way of Iran, Iraq, Alawite Syria (Iran's ally from 1979) and so far as Lebanon (the place the Shiites represent the biggest majority) , stretching from the borders of Afghanistan to the Mediterranean and having fun with the best oil assets on the planet, worries the Reagan administration. If Khomeyni discovered himself in possession of Iranian and Iraqi oil, he would achieve as essential a job as Saudi Arabia in OPEC and would be capable of dictate his regulation.
The Irangate scandal
The Iranian army drive is basically made up of American apparatuses inherited from the time of the Shah. After taking their embassy in Tehran in November 1979, the People had frozen all property and contracts referring to the upkeep of army gear. Clearly, the Iranians have been left with unmaintained gear, of which solely their worst enemies held spare components. The hostage taking, initiated within the 1980s by Hezzbolah pharmacies, such because the Islamic Jihad, in Lebanon then performs a vital position of lever of Iran vis-a-vis the Western powers. They are going to enable the Iranians to barter with their enemy. As well as, these hostage-taking had repercussions on public opinion and the interior politics of Western international locations, as evidenced by the defeat of Jimmy Carter in opposition to Reagan, responsible of getting failed to search out, within the eyes of the People, an answer to the seize of the embassy in Tehran.
In 1985, secret negotiations have been launched between the People and the Iranians, with a view to present the latter with spare components and ammunition (ground-to-ground missiles and surface-to-air missile) which they wanted within the warfare which opposes Iraq. The People are no less than the model of the official diplomats chargeable for these negotiations14, thus hoped in return to launch hostages in Lebanon. The plan will show to be a failure, since solely three hostages out of thirty have been launched. These secret negotiations have been revealed in November 1986 in a Lebanese newspaper Al Shiraa, by an Iranian cadre then hostile to any negotiations with the People15. It was the Irangate scandal that will completely taint the remainder of Reagan’s mandate.
However the story doesn’t finish there. If the first motivation just isn’t cash however the launch of hostages, arms gross sales are likely to pay dividends. These sums will then be used to finance secret anti-communist operations elsewhere on the planet and specifically a counter-revolutionary guerrilla warfare in Nicaragua: the Contras. In 1979 the Sandinistas, a revolutionary Marxist social gathering, overthrew the American-backed dictator Somoza. From 1981, the Reagan administration then supplied army support to the far-right insurrection. However the CIA's sabotage and secret sabotage operations in Nicaragua will then push the American Congress to ban army support to the counter-revolutionary guerrillas.16. The Reagan administration will then arrange a scheme which can consist in promoting arms to Iran however passing by way of Israel, with a view to recuperate funding for the Nicaraguan rebels. Bypassing two American legal guidelines, one in opposition to Iran and the opposite regarding Nicaragua. To make issues worse, the mullahs have been going to purchase the American weapons from the Israelis.
Saudi Arabia as a part of its “checkbook diplomacy17 “, May also show, through the CIA to be a supply of funding for the contras18.
What highlights the Irangate is the existence in america of a black finances. No group has ever printed particulars on the topic, we all know, nonetheless, that it created in the course of the Second World Struggle to finance the Manhattan nuclear bomb program, which it remained fixed for a few years, however which it might quadruple throughout. Reagan years19.
After the Second World Struggle, america, the united states, France, Nice Britain, and China took turns accessing the atomic bomb. Everyone seems to be discovering the idea of deterrence, and everybody is aware of they won’t hit one another. The oil-producing Arab international locations are searching for to unite, outdoors the hegemony of the 2 blocs, and to amass atomic weapons. The us and the US will wage a warfare of affect within the Center East, and can work to make this situation of Arab independence unattainable.
Within the early 1970s, clashes between producing international locations and the West multiplied. The primary oil shock of 1973 and the vertiginous enhance within the value of the barrel being the acme of this sequence. The western international locations, on the forefront of which France and Japan, will then develop nuclear energy to cut back their dependence on Arab oil. That is the 1974 Messmer plan in France which supplies for the development of almost 200 reactors. Arab international locations don’t want nuclear energy, however France will nonetheless attempt to promote it to them. And she’s going to signal contracts with two of them: Iran and Iraq.
Negotiations with Iran started in 1971 and resulted in 1974 with the signing of the Eurodif settlement. With Iraq, these negotiations start after the oil shock, when the nation nationalized its oil manufacturing a 12 months earlier. In 1973, OPEC member international locations united in opposition to the West by organising an embargo. Iraq goes to fare properly by not abiding by the embargo and promoting its oil for arms contracts. Typical weapons, excessive know-how, chemical weapons and nuclear weapons. Already in 1972, Saddam Hussein had come to Paris, acquired by Pompidou and had signed arms contracts. He was on the lookout for a ” allied to the west “With a purpose to free her from” the Soviet embrace “20. In 1975 Saddam Hussein visited the Cadarache nuclear analysis web site. Within the media, the partnership with Iraq is talked about. We’re speaking about water reactors and totally different fashions of energy vegetation, civil nuclear. On September eight, 1975 the nuclear cooperation settlement was concluded and it’s apparent to everybody that we’re speaking about civil power. Nonetheless, the subsequent day within the Lebanese day by day Usbu al-Arabi Saddam Hussein declares that the signed settlement is ” the primary concrete step in direction of the development of an Arab atomic weapon “. For journalist Dominique Lorentz “ agreements made with (Iraqis and Iranians) are army agreements disguised as civil agreements “. Clearly, within the mid-1970s, France dedicated to supplying atomic weapons to 2 belligerent powers within the Center East. One ally of the People, the opposite ally of the Soviets. Weapons of mass destruction, of which nuclear is one aspect, have been to develop into a topic of competition between Iraq and the remainder of the world over the subsequent decade.
The Luchaire case or the French Irangate
From 1982 to 1986 France, which helps Iraq, can even promote weapons to Iran in a completely unlawful method. Daniel Dewavrin, son of André, alias colonel Passy, nice resistance fighter and shut companion of De Gaulle, on the head of the Luchaire firm will thus export almost 450,000 munitions of artillery (shells) through a rigged monetary package deal and false certificates making the vacation spot of those weapons Portugal, Greece, Peru, Ecuador, Brazil, Thailand or Yugoslavia. February 28, 1986 The Channel Press will reveal the case: the shells and their falsified traceability, have been delivered to an Iranian port by two cargo ships having sailed in Cherbourg. On the request of Prime Minister Laurent Fabius, a report established that Charles Hernu, then Minister of Protection, was conscious and had tolerated these deliveries. The report additionally claims that these deliveries have been ” most likely coated by members of M. Hernu's cupboard21 “. Worse, these arms gross sales would have freed three million francs which might have been used to finance the Socialist Occasion. In the course of the warfare, France was going to ship arms to a rustic below embargo, whereas supporting its adversary, and the commissions have been going to replenish the coffers of a political social gathering.
Within the American case, Irangate officers had been in a position to justify these transactions by negotiating the discharge of hostages. Journalist Dominique Lorentz remembers that in 1982, when arms deliveries started, no French was nonetheless detained in Lebanon. However the causes aren’t essentially monetary. For her, these “industrial exchanges” would have extra to do with the litigation on the nuclear energy. A manner for the French to compensate for his or her blockage on the reimbursement of the billion, loaned by the Shah however that the French didn’t wish to reimburse, and that the Iranians claimed22.
The warfare between Iran and Iraq was additionally going to be fought on the oil subject. Every of the events seeks to suffocate its adversary economically by depriving it of its oil or the opportunity of exporting it. In 1982, Syria allied with Iran, closed the pipeline going from Kirkuk to Baniyas and which crosses its territory. 800 km lengthy, inbuilt 1952 and resulting in the Mediterranean, it exported almost 50% of Iraqi crude oil.
In January 1984 Iraq misplaced the land warfare began two years earlier and adjusted its technique. Saddam Hussein decides on a maritime exclusion zone within the Persian Gulf. It intends to assault all ships, indiscriminately, which load or unload in Iran. He thus hopes, by concentrating on specifically the tankers, to forestall Iran from exporting its oil. In three years, 227 ships will probably be attacked within the Gulf, 60% of them by the Iraqis. 70% will probably be oil tankers.
The Iranians, in the meantime, are concentrating on ships transiting by way of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, carrying Iraqi army support. It’s from this time, and since oil pursuits are focused that the battle will internationalize. Reagan, who doesn't need the Gulf to develop into a ” bottleneck Will then massively ship the navy. The variety of overseas ships will attain the best 40 ships (together with 24 American and 15,000 males). France and Nice Britain are additionally current within the Gulf alongside the People. Formally they’ve a job of peacemaker. Unofficially, it’s the presence of Soviet warships that worries them: it’s a query of not leaving securing and managing this essential axis of oil flows to the Russians.
In 1987, a collision happened between an American ship, the frigate Stark and an Iraqi mirage. The boat, which was crusing huge from Qatar, alongside the coast of Saudi Arabia and within the path of Bahrain, was attacked by an Iraqi hunter. The People claimed it was not within the maritime exclusion zone, when the Iraqis – who had orders to destroy any constructing in that zone – said the other. 37 American sailors died on this assault.
Reagan instantly accused the Iranians. For his or her half, through warfare data headquarters, they shortly perceive what’s going on: ” a severe and harmful lure Arrange by the Iraqis to lure the People and the Russians into the warfare. In a letter of condolence, Saddam Hussein writes “ We’ve got misplaced so many family members within the warfare that has been raging for seven years because the Iranian authorities continues to reject our calls and people of the worldwide neighborhood for a simply and lasting peace “. If the Iranians reject the peace proposed by the Council of the United Nations, it’s as a result of it doesn’t present for sanctions in opposition to the aggressor nation. And if Reagan calls Iran, which is really harmless in historical past a “barbaric nation”, after this assault, it’s only as a result of it helps Iraq. A number of weeks earlier, the American Beneath-Secretary of State congratulated the resistance of the Iraqi military and his “bravery” within the face of Iran's aggression, thereby forgetting that the battle had been began in September 1980 on the Saddam Hussein's initiative.
Reagan justified the American presence within the Gulf by a pacifying position. ” If a hostile energy got here to dominate this strategic area and its assets (…) and there could be a bottleneck for freedom “. The “bottleneck” is the Persian Gulf, by way of which 70% of Saudi oil, 60% from Qatar, 40% for Oman and all Iranian assets transit. ” That is the explanation why we preserve a naval presence. Notre however est d’empêcher et non de provoquer un élargissement du conflit (…) se retirer ou se désengager serait une victoire pour ceux qui font la guerre et ceux qui provoquent la guerre “. En clair, les américains ne veulent pas laisser la zone aux soviétiques, et vont mener une guerre de deux poids deux mesures en laissant faire les irakiens et en réprimant les iraniens dans le Golfe. Automobile depuis 1982, l’Irak était devenu un pays ami après avoir été retiré de la liste des états « soutenant le terrorisme », deux ans après son invasion de l’Iran et l’année où ces derniers assurent avoir subi 11 attaques chimiques.
A partir de l’attaque de la frégate Stark les américains vont donc accentuer la pression sur l’Iran. Ils envoient dans le Golfe le plus grand porte-avion nucléaire au monde l’USS Vincennes. En Juillet 1988 par méprise il abat un Boeing iranien survolant le Golfe avec 290 passagers à son bord. Georges Bush, vice-président de Reagan reprendra la model du commandant du porte-avion, en affirmant – à tort, que l’avion était sorti de son couloir aérien. Il ne présentera jamais d’excuse23. Quand ils ne se trompent pas de cible, les américains et les irakiens multiplient les attaques contre des objectifs pétroliers.
Tandis que Reagan accentue sa pression sur l’Iran, Saddam Hussein profite de l’essoufflement iranien (après 7 ans de guerre) pour faire le ménage dans son pays. A partir de mars 1987 il lance une campagne d’éradication des kurdes d’Irak. En un an ils connaîtront 211 jours d’attaque chimique. Le génocide kurde (surtout entre février et septembre 1988) fît 182 000 morts civils. 90% des villages du Kurdistan irakiens sont rayés de la carte.
En aout 1988, la Conference pour la prévention et la répression du crime du génocide un texte de droit worldwide rédigé en 1948 par les Nation Unis est discuté au Sénat américain. Dick Chesney représentant républicain de l’État du Wyoming s’oppose à son adoption. Trois ans plus tard, secrétaire de la défense de Bush, il supervisera l’opération Desert Storm contre l’invasion irakienne du Koweït. Quant à Reagan il menace carrément d’imposer son véto. Le texte, écrit quelques années après l’Holocauste, sera finalement adopté par les américains fin novembre 1988. La guerre est terminée depuis trois mois. Et le génocide de Saddam Hussein depuis un mois.
Bilan de la guerre
Le bilan de ces huit années de guerre est effroyable. 300 000 morts côté irakien pour un pays d’un peu plus de 15 hundreds of thousands d’habitants. Un million côté iranien dans un pays de 50 hundreds of thousands d’habitants. Mais surtout aucun des belligérants ne type vainqueur. Les frontières restent celles en vigueur lors de l’accord sur le Chatt al-Arab en 1975. L’Occident, Etats-Unis en tête auront vendu des armes tantôt à l’Irak, qu’ils soutenaient officiellement afin d’endiguer le souffle de la révolution islamique. Tantôt à l’Iran, secrètement. Les raisons ne sont pas uniquement mercantiles. Il ne s’agissait pas simplement de vendre des armes, mais aussi de casser l’hégémonie de Saddam Hussein. Automobile bien que l’Irak soit peu peuplé, il s’agit de la première puissance militaire Moyen-Orientale. On comprend donc mieux pourquoi un pays comme l’Israël en est venu à vendre des armes au régime antisioniste de Khomeyni et à servir d’intermédiaire dans l’Irangate. Il s’agissait d’empêcher l’un des deux belligérants de remporter la guerre et de les affaiblir mutuellement. Washington livra suffisamment d’armes à l'Irak pour éviter la défaite, mais pas assez pour se dégager du conflit. Sécuriser le Golfe Persique, pour que le pétrole continu de circuler, tout en regardant la menace iranienne et la menace irakienne s’entretuer. Les américains empêchèrent toute résolution du conflit au sein de l’ONU.
Une des conséquences de la guerre c’est aussi la confessionnalisation des sociétés et de la région. Tout l’enjeu de ce conflit aura été de créer un antagonisme entre les communautés arabe et perse et religieuses sunnite et chi’ite.
- ” C’est en confessionnalisant le conflit, en en faisant la guerre de survie du chiisme révolutionnaire contre la synthèse sunnito-baasiste, que l’Iran radicalise la place des nations arabes, et particulièrement des monarchies sunnites du Golfe qui s’affichent en soutiens de l’Irak. C’est ainsi qu’en réaction à la renaissance chiite, des pays comme l’Arabie saoudite ont pu engager une « radicalisation sunnite néo-salafiste, dont le dijhadisme est (aujourd’hui) la forme exacerbée », scindant la région Moyen-Orient en une dialectique conflictuelle sunnite-chiite a priori indépassable et occultant un ensemble de facteurs politiques et sociaux. 24“
1 Jean-Pierre Filiu, Généraux, Gangsters et Jihadistes, la Découverte, Paris, 2018
2 Pierre Rossi, Le 14 juillet 1958 ne fut-il en Irak qu’un coup d’Etat ? Politique étrangère, numéro 61, 1961
three James Akins, ambassadeur de 1963 à 1965. Interview The survival of Saddam sur pbs.org.
four Les premiers gisements réellement exploitables sont découverts en 1927 du côté de Kirkouk. Le consortium exploitant ces gisements comprend la Grande-Bretagne (50%), la compagnie française des pétroles (25%) et des compagnies américaines (25%). La manufacturing est relativement faible, d’autant plus que les britanniques durant la seconde guerre mondiale bombardent les puits afin d’empêcher les allemands de mettre la primary dessus. Au début des années 1950, face à la montée des nationalismes et une anglophobie rampante, les compagnies pétrolières choisissent de ménager leur principal allié dans la région en proposant le système fifty/fifty. 50% des recettes sont reversées à l’Irak.
5 The survival of Saddam, interview cité.
6 Lors de sa venue en 1975 en France, Jacques Chirac, maire de Paris, accorda au Raïs son “estime“, sa “considération“ et son “affection“.
7 Kellog, Brown & Root, filiale de Halliburton et responsable d’infrastructures pétrolières est présente en Irak au début des années 1970.
eight « Pendant un demi-siècle la politique américaine au Moyen-Orient a été guidée par plusieurs objectifs de sécurités fondamentaux : empêcher tout pouvoir dans la région de sortir comme un hégémon; Assurer la libre circulation des ressources énergétiques, toujours vitales pour le fonctionnement de l'économie mondiale » Henry Kissinger, Worldwide Herald Tribune, 2 Avril 2012
9 Washington publish, 21 juin 1973
10 Voir le chapitre 1979.
11 Premier président de la République d’Iran.
12 Dans cette liste créée par les USA en 1979, l’Irak sera inscrite puis enlevée à deux reprises. Retirée en 1982 pour des questions stratégiques dans la guerre Iran/Irak, remis en 1990 lors de l’invasion du Koweït, puis de nouveau retiré en 2003 après l’invasion américaine.
13 Kenneth Timmerman, Le foyer de la mort, Remark l’occident a armé l’Irak ? Calmann-Lévy, Paris, 1991.
14 Douglas Martin, Albert Hakim, determine in Iran-Contra Affair, dies at 66, New York Occasions, 1/05/03
15 C’est à cette époque que naissent les dissensions au sein du régime sur la politique étrangère entre les « réalistes » et les « radicaux ».
16 C’est l’amendement Bolland, du nom de son créateur, un démocrate du Massachusetts.
17 Le Safari membership est une alliance en 1976 entre les companies secrets and techniques de différents pays occidentaux (USA, France) et pro-occidentaux au Moyen-Orient (Iran, Arabie Saoudite, Égypte, Israël) et dont le however est d’endiguer l’affect soviétique, par divers moyens, notamment en Afrique. On parle de « différentes opérations » en Éthiopie, en Somalie, au Congo, dont le however était tant de combattre l’affect militaire et idéologique du communisme que de préserver les intérêts miniers ou pétroliers dans ces pays. Pour les gouvernements, le Safari Membership, était un moyen efficace de mener des actions sans devoir les assumer en cas d’échec. Le financement par les USA de 30 000 moudjahidines en Afghanistan en 1979 fait partie de cette stratégie. L’Arabie Saoudite était la principale supply de financement de cette organisation, c’est ce qu’on appelle la « diplomatie du chéquier ». voir Safari membership : une deuxième CIA, de la guerre froide au financement du djihadisme, Mediapart, 2/03/2016
18 Contras might have gotten $30 million from Saudi Arabi, Doyle MacManus, Los Angeles Occasions, 15/01/87
19 100 hundreds of thousands de dollars pour la bombe atomique, a plus d’une trentaine de milliards pour le financement de la guerre en Afghanistan, in CIA et Jihad.
20 Le foyer de la mort, op. cité.
21 Jean Guisnel, Armes de corruption large, secrets and techniques et combines des marchands de canons, éditions La Découverte, Paris, 2011.
22 Dominique Lorentz, Une guerre, éditions Les Arènes, Paris, 1997.
23 Le 21 décembre 1988, un avion de le Pan Am s’écrase à Lockerbie en écosse faisant 270 morts. Pendant vingt ans, c’est Kadhafi qui fut soupçonnée d’être le commanditaire de cette attaque. Depuis 2005, plusieurs éléments viennent mettre en doute cette explication pointant plutôt du doigt la responsabilité de l’Iran. Cet attentat pourrait être une forme de vengeance en réponse à la « méprise » de l’armée américaine contre le Boeing de l’Iran air.
24 Pierre Emmery, Le conflit sunnite / chiite au Moyen-Orient, une rivalité millénaire ?, Les clefs du Moyen-Orient, février 2016
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