Saddam Did Not 'Kill The Kurds'
Date: Tuesday, November 14 2006
Saddam Did Not
'Kill The Kurds'
The Myth Of The 'Anfal Genocide'
By David Hungerford
Many crimes against Iraq have been justified by the demonization of Saddam Hussein. Invasion was justified by claims that he possessed "weapons of mass destruction," had ties to al-Qaeda, and posed a threat to the territorial United States.
The claims turned out to be lies. There were no "weapons of mass destruction" or programs to develop them. There were no ties to al-Qaeda. He did not threaten U.S. territory.
Those who still support the occupation now say it was justified because Saddam Hussein was a "brutal dictator." One of the main complaints against him is that "he killed the Kurds." The usual reference is the Anfal campaign of the Iraqi army from February 23, 1988 to September 6, 1988. It is claimed that Anfal was a campaign of genocide. It can now be said that the "Anfal genocide" never happened. It is another lie.
Ironically it is the second of the illegal U.S.-run "trials" of Mr. Hussein in Baghdad that allows this conclusion. The facts and circumstances of the "trial" can be analyzed without any concession to the legitimacy of the "court." Nor, since it is illegal, is there any reason to wait for the "court's" findings before reaching one's own conclusions. Applicable principles of international law are presented in Appendix A.
Certain facts are not in dispute. The campaign took place in the late stages of the Iran-Iraq war. The Iraqi army fought units of the Iranian army in Northern Iraq. Kurdish guerillas called peshmerga allied with Iran against the government of their own country. In order to suppress the guerillas the Iraqi government displaced large numbers of Kurdish civilians from border areas.
Press reports say the current charge is genocide during Anfal. By any definition the crime of genocide means the extermination of large numbers of people. At first no definite number of civilian fatalities was given in news reports, but in September the "prosecution" was several times reported to say there were 182,000 deaths.
The "trial" on the Anfal charges began on August 21, 2006. There were 13 sessions of the "court" between that date and September 26, at which time it recessed. See Appendix B for the tabulation of articles.