I haven’t seen this mentioned, and it has been on my mind for a bit - most of what I have read on the possibility of an upcoming war with Iraq has indicated that US experts expect Iraq to use chemical weapons, either on US/Allied troops, or perhaps on Israel.
But why would they? Assuming they do have chemical weapons, why would Hussein use them, doing the one and probably only thing that would completely and totally justify the US’s war against it?
PS: I mentioned this to one of my more cynical friends, how suggested that just how Hussein is likely to blow up oil fields and blame it on the US, there was nothing to stop the US from lobbing a few harmless mustard gas bombs in empty fields, cite it as evidence of Hussein’s chemical weapons stockpile, and be able to move in for the kill with the backing of the world behind it. Of course, my friend also thinks we staged the moon landings and have something going on in Area 51…
But that’s the point - I mean, does anyone in Iraq, Hussein included, think that they could actually win a war with the US? They couldn’t even clearly beat IRAN for crying out loud.
No, I think Hussein knows that the only way he would “win” a war with the US is to make it politically impossible for the US to push forward with it. He knows the popular opinion around the world, including in the US, is against the war - and he also knows he doesn’t have to convince the world that he is “right” or “good” to keep the world on his side (against the war). And he also knows that the US can not stomach a long war with lots of US soldier and Iraqi civilian casualties.
What about a scenario like this? The US attacks. Hussein basically does nothing for the first two weeks - only minimal resistance while pulling back into the main urban areas. He does whatever he can to maximize the chance that any US attacks kill civilians. He basically lets the US beat the ever-loving crap out of his outlying armies.
After about two weeks, he then goes on a massive PR campaign, calling on the world to witness this “unjust” war - " we are getting pummeled, our civilians killed; surely if we had weapons of destruction we would use them at this point to protect our selves, etc etc". This, with lots of pictures of women and children being killed, is splashed on CNN.
If the armies pull back into the urban areas, is there not a chance that (if he doesn’t use any chemical weapons or other WMD, assuming he has them), he could hold out quite a while - long enough, perhaps,@that US popular opinion turns against the war to such a degree that Bush and Co. decide that their political lives are at stake if they don’t call off the dogs?
Note that I am not making a case here either for or against the war. I am simply wondering if the scenario as above, which has been on my mind for a while, holds water.
The generals want to get in good with the new boss. There will be no chemical weapons fired. I think if Saddam goes out in public to oversee his troops they will kill him to stop the war. Most likely he will hide out and nobody will follow his orders. They will just not answer the phone or be able to be found. The military will give up quickly. The country will turn on Saddam after all Saddam = sanctions.
It won’t be much of a war. There is no need to protest this upcomming folly. Save it for a good war.