News Is it true that Saddam asked for US permission before invading Kuwait ?

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vanesch

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This is an honest question.

Back to Gulf war I:
the rumor ran in the beginning of the 90ies that a few days before he invaded Kuwait, Saddam asked the US ambassador for the permission to do so. The answer was that they didn't support it, but that they considered it as a local affair in which they wouldn't intervene.
Is there anything known about it ? Is it just a rumor or was there something to it ?
 
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Actions of the US such as these are very well documented. Seeing as Saddam was CIA's lackey prior to invading Kuwait I have no reason to doubt this claim (I've heard it before).
 

russ_watters

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Smurf said:
Actions of the US such as these are very well documented. Seeing as Saddam was CIA's lackey prior to invading Kuwait I have no reason to doubt this claim (I've heard it before).
Interesting self-contradiction there: there is documentation so you don't need to see documentation? Well, lets see the documentation anyway...

There was a meeting between Hussein and the American Ambassador, which is the basis for this claim. HERE is a transcript, and the US ambassador's response to Hussein was:
...But we have no opinion on the Arab-Arab conflicts, like your border disagreement with Kuwait.

...Frankly, we can see only that you have deployed massive troops in the south. Normally that would not be any of our business. But when this happens in the context of what you said on your national day, then when we read the details in the two letters of the Foreign Minister, then when we see the Iraqi point of view that the measures taken by the U.A.E. and Kuwait is, in the final analysis, parallel to military aggression against Iraq, then it would be reasonable for me to be concerned. And for this reason, I received an instruction to ask you, in the spirit of friendship -- not in the spirit of confrontation -- regarding your intentions.

I simply describe the position of my Government. And I do not mean that the situation is a simple situation. But our concern is a simple one.[emphasis added]
We certainly did not give our permission. In fact, we were asking his intentions. His response was rhetoric. In hindsight, maybe it should have been taken more seriously.
 
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vanesch

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russ_watters said:
Interesting self-contradiction there: there is documentation so you don't need to see documentation? Well, lets see the documentation anyway...
Ah, thanks! I understand that much better now.
Indeed, being an Ambassador in those countries deserves a BIG salary, because you have to weight every single word, apparently :smile:
 

russ_watters

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Something I forgot - its that first sentence that I quoted that is cited as the US giving permission to attack Kuwait.
 

jcsd

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I tyhink the question should be did Sadam think thta the US gave him permission to invade Kuwait as I remeber reading that though the uS didn't gve him permission Saddam was mistakenly under the impression that the US had greenlighted the invasion.
 

russ_watters

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jcsd said:
I tyhink the question should be did Sadam think thta the US gave him permission to invade Kuwait as I remeber reading that though the uS didn't gve him permission Saddam was mistakenly under the impression that the US had greenlighted the invasion.
That quote could have been wishfully-interpreted by Saddam as saying we wouldn't do anything to stop him.
 
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Gonzolo

On a related note, can someone confirm that the Iraq-Kuweit border crosses an underground oil-bed and that there was an agreement from both sides not to pump it, but then Kuweit did, and that is what got Saddam to mobilise his troops? What was Kuweit's justification for pumping this oil and breaking the agreement? Why didn't Saddam not simply pump his own side of the bed instead? Elaboration appreciated. I was too young to care at the time.
 

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jcsd said:
I tyhink the question should be did Sadam think thta the US gave him permission to invade Kuwait as I remeber reading that though the uS didn't gve him permission Saddam was mistakenly under the impression that the US had greenlighted the invasion.
I don't know about Hussein believing that gave him permission, but that comment, added to his impression of the US commitment to war in other places (Lebanon, Viet Nam), probably gave him a strong impression that the US wouldn't enter into and sustain a 'tough' war (actually, it wasn't entirely unreasonable to believe no one would care enough about Kuwait to kick Iraq out - Kuwait wasn't very popular).

He's consistenly had troubles understanding the US and predicting how people will react. The pre-war controversy over WMD is a good example. Destroying them would leave Iraq defenseless in Hussein's eyes. Keeping them would almost certainly result in detection and harsh punitive action. Destroying them and any possible evidence, but reacting as if he had something to hide left everyone in the dark.

Could Iran mount a new war against Iraq with impunity? Did he really destroy those missiles, or would Tehran be bombarded with chemical weapons as soon as Iran invaded? Could the US invade Iraq with impunity, or would the troops be confronted with deadly chemical and biological weapons every step of the way? No one could be sure. Every decision by his foes would be filled with uncertainty.

Well, at least that was the theory. And a damn fine theory that was.
 

russ_watters

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Gonzolo said:
On a related note, can someone confirm that the Iraq-Kuweit border crosses an underground oil-bed and that there was an agreement from both sides not to pump it, but then Kuweit did, and that is what got Saddam to mobilise his troops? What was Kuweit's justification for pumping this oil and breaking the agreement? Why didn't Saddam not simply pump his own side of the bed instead? Elaboration appreciated. I was too young to care at the time.
There is a shared oil field, but I'm not real up on the specifics. HERE is an article with some insight.
Iraq's first financial disagreement with Kuwait related to oil policy. Iraq objected to Kuwait's production beyond OPEC quotas and the consequent contribution that overproduction made to lowering oil prices internationally. Iraq also claimed Kuwait was siphoning oil from the shared Ar Rumaylah oil field straddling the Iraq-Kuwait border. During the Iran-Iraq War, Iraq ceased production from its side of the field while Kuwait continued operations. Kuwait asserted it had taken oil only from its own side of the field; Iraq claimed it had poached.
 
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Gonzolo said:
On a related note, can someone confirm that the Iraq-Kuweit border crosses an underground oil-bed and that there was an agreement from both sides not to pump it, but then Kuweit did, and that is what got Saddam to mobilise his troops? What was Kuweit's justification for pumping this oil and breaking the agreement? Why didn't Saddam not simply pump his own side of the bed instead? Elaboration appreciated. I was too young to care at the time.
I can try to answer a little bit:
Kuwaitis are known in the M.East to be the most greedy SOB's(after israelis :wink: ), and they were pumping oil illegally from underneath Iraq, thus driving price of a barrel of oil very low.Iraqi foregn minister has appealed to the internnational comunity to solve this problem( v.well documented) but nothing happened.
Iraq has just emerged from devastating war with Iran with huge debt and Saddam. H needed cash badly.(one part of equation solved)
.But most important thing is, if not for the Iraq and its opposition to the fannaticall Iranians, Iran would swept whole Arabian peninsula.Saddam felt Kuwaitis, Saudis and other had huge debt to him, but instead repaying in kind they screwd him.
 
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Gonzolo

Thanks russ and tumor. Exactly what I was looking for. It seems funny that Saddam thought Kuwait and Saudi A. owed him. Since the US backed Iraq quite a lot in that Iran-Iraq war, K. and S.A. were apparently equally indebted to the US. Perhaps lowering gas cost was a way to say thanks.
 

russ_watters

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Gonzolo said:
Thanks russ and tumor. Exactly what I was looking for. It seems funny that Saddam thought Kuwait and Saudi A. owed him. Since the US backed Iraq quite a lot in that Iran-Iraq war, K. and S.A. were apparently equally indebted to the US. Perhaps lowering gas cost was a way to say thanks.
Well, there is some spin in tumor's post: he's talking about political debt (ie, that Iraq saved the rest of the middle-east from Iran) - the financial debt that Iraq was in was one of the reasons for the war. Saddam figured that since he saved them, he shouldn't have to pay them back.
 
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Gonzolo

Couldn't he have chosen to do like Kuweit and produce more oil than was allowed by the quotas, to help pay his financial debt?
 
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He could do that i guess, but then how low would oil price go? on the other hand, he could not let some cockroaches dictate his oil production policy.
Saddam had enough problems with Kurds in the north and Shiites.
 

kat

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I remember when that young Kuwaiti lady at the beginning of the first Gulf war accused Iraqi soldiers of throwing in the Kuwaiti hospital babies from incubators to the ground and leaving them to die
I was shocked when i heard this, but many years later truth came out and all this was a fabrication by CIA/Kuwaiti sheiks! What is more interesting that girl is a daughter of Kuwaiti ambassador to the USA.
So.. to me Kuwaitis are nothing more than a lying SOB's, My apologies to the coackroches you are much better!
 
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