News Release

Iraq: Oil-For-Food; War No Matter What?


Halliday is former head of the UN oil-for-food program and a former UN Assistant Secretary General. The Security Council was expected to extend the oil-for-food program today. Halliday said today: “It’s good under the circumstances that the program is being extended for another six months — it keeps people alive — but it should not be necessary. We should have given the economy back to the Iraqis as a prelude to [the recent UN Security Council resolution] 1441. It would have made sense to get rid of the deadly economic sanctions as part of an agreement to ensure Iraqi compliance with the weapons inspectors. Right now, there’s no incentive for compliance — other than to avoid death. But the Iraqis seem to have it right when they say the U.S. is moving to attacking Iraq regardless of Iraqi compliance. An increase in the current U.S. bombings or an all-out attack or invasion will have devastating consequences for ordinary Iraqis; the ports might well get closed down, distribution systems get shut down. We have to look at the human consequences.” Halliday is available for a limited number of interviews.
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Boyle is professor of international law at the University of Illinois College of Law and is available for interviews regarding the recent UN Security Council resolution, particularly the argument advanced by the Bush administration that Iraqi firings in the “no-fly zones” constitute a violation of the recent resolution.

Author of the forthcoming book The House of Bush and the House of Saud, AbuKhalil is associate professor of political science at California State University at Stanislaus. He said today: “As critical as I’ve been of the Saudis, the current attack on them needs to be scrutinized. The ‘Karzai Syndrome’ is now operating in the Mideast. The U.S. will not tolerate any independence on the part of its clients. If you give the U.S. government 100 percent and disregard your population, you end up like [Afghan president Hamid] Karzai — you have to have U.S. bodyguards. The Saudis have been very pro-U.S., but now this is not sufficient and the U.S. is interfering in the Saudi succession struggle. Jordan on the other hand is doing everything the U.S. wants, so it’s getting $400 million — and it has massive protests.”

Just after Bush’s scheduled signing of the Homeland Security Act this afternoon, attorney Kheder was among the scheduled speakers at a 2 p.m. news conference outside the White House in Lafayette Park. She said today: “The Homeland Security legislation flies in the face of our Fourth Amendment protections of ‘the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects…’ The Total Information Awareness Program, headed by John Poindexter, will be able to know what web sites we surf, what food we order, our bank transactions, etc. Ironically, this microscopic intrusion into our lives is being done in the name of freedom and democracy.”

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167