2002 October 17 Thursday
UN Security Council Iraq End Game

There are a number of wire service reports about growing Bush Administration impatience with UN Security Council negotiations over an Iraq inspections and war resolution. This first report says that Colin Powell is going to get tough with the French:

The United States is losing patience with slow progress on a United Nations resolution demanding Iraqi disarmament, U.S. officials said on Wednesday.

This second report details concessions the US has offered which have not convinced any of the opposing 3 permanent Security Council members:

In a concession to France, the new U.S. draft will give more credence to reports from U.N. arms inspectors searching for weapons of mass destruction. But the United States still insists on one resolution and hopes its new language is vague enough for most countries to support, the diplomats said.

The Bush administration also has shown willingness to drop provisions in its draft that would allow key council members to join U.N. inspections and have troops open any routes that may be barred to the arms experts.

My personal preference for an outcome would be for the US to put forth a strong resolution, have one or more of France, China, or Russia veto it, and then for the US to just go ahead and invade Iraq. That way the UN gets relegated to a deserved irrelevance and the US is in no way constrained by the wording of a compromise resolution or by ineffectual inspection teams. The only problem with that scenario is that it will put Tony Blair in a difficult situation. Whether the UK would participate in a US attack on Iraq without a UN Security Council resolution is not at all clear.

Update: Once again, it is all about the Benjamins. This NY Times (free reigistration required) article has Russia and French wanting to be assured that they will continue to have business deals for the development of Iraqi oil fields after the war is over:

Many experts say France's potential economic interests in a future Iraq are a factor in its wanting eventually to be on the side of Washington if Mr. Hussein is overthrown. Russia also has strong oil interests in Iraq.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2002 October 17 12:51 AM  UN, International Institutions


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