The Wikileak cables start to provide the framework to understand why Saddam Hussein made the decision to invade Kuwait in the first Gulf War, he was encouraged by America.
From Ambassador April Glaspie, in which she said the “US takes no position” on Arab boundary disputes, 7/25/1990.
Glaspie fails to register or discuss Saddam Hussein’s complaint that the Kuwaitis are stealing oil, as indicated on this timeline, an allegation that the US should have at least been aware of, and she does not in any way address Saddam Hussein’s primary complaint, i.e., that due to the costs of the proxy war against Iran that Iraq fought with US encouragement, Iraq is broke, unable to pay its basic obligations because the price of oil is so low.
The Bush Administration, of course, wishes to keep the price of oil low to end the recession and help George Herbert’s re-election chances:
“¶4. SADDAM, WHOSE MANNER WAS CORDIAL, REASONABLE AND EVEN WARM THROUGHOUT THE ENSUING TWO HOURS, SAID HE WISHED THE AMBASSADOR TO CONVEY A MESSAGE TO PRESIDENT BUSH. SADDAM THEN RECALLED IN DETAIL THE HISTORY OF IRAQ’S DECISION TO REESTABLISH DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS AND ITS POSTPONING IMPLEMENTATION OF THAT DECISION AT THE BEGINNING OF THE WAR, RATHER THAN BE THOUGHT WEAK AND NEEDY. HE THEN SPOKE ABOUT THE MANY “BLOWS” OUR RELATIONS HAVE BEEN SUBJECTED TO SINCE 1984, CHIEF AMONG THEM IRANGATE. IT WAS AFTER THE FAW VICTORY, SADDAM SAID, THAT IRAQI MISAPPREHENSIONS ABOUT USG PURPOSES BEGAN TO SURFACE AGAIN, I.E., SUSPICIONS THAT THE U.S. WAS NOT HAPPY TO SEE THE WAR END.
¶5. PICKING HIS WORDS WITH CARE, SADDAM SAID THAT THERE ARE “SOME CIRCLES” IN THE USG,
INCLUDING IN CIA AND THE STATE DEPARTMENT, BUT EMPHATICALLY EXCLUDING THE PRESIDENT AND
SECRETARY BAKER, WHO ARE NOT FRIENDLY TOWARD IRAQ-U.S. RELATIONS. HE THEN LISTED WHAT HE
SEEMED TO REGARD AS FACTS TO SUPPORT THIS CONCLUSION: “SOME CIRCLES ARE GATHERING
INFORMATION ON WHO MIGHT BE SADDAM HUSAYN’S SUCCESSOR;” THEY KEPT UP CONTACTS IN THE GULF
WARNING AGAINST IRAQ; THEY WORKED TO ENSURE NO HELP WOULD GO TO IRAQ (READ EXIM AND CCC).
Continues below the fold
¶6. IRAQ, THE PRESIDENT STRESSED, IS IN SERIOUS FINANCIAL DIFFICULTIES, WITH 40 BILLION USD DEBTS.
IRAQ, WHOSE VICTORY IN THE WAR AGAINST IRAN MADE AN HISTORIC DIFFERENCE TO THE ARAB WORLD
AND THE WEST, NEEDS A MARSHALL PLAN. BUT “YOU WANT THE OIL PRICE DOWN,” SADDAM CHARGED.
¶7. RESUMING HIS LIST OF GRIEVANCES WHICH HE BELIEVED WERE ALL INSPIRED BY “SOME CIRCLES” IN THE USG, HE RECALLED THE “USIA CAMPAIGN” AGAINST HIMSELF, AND THE GENERAL MEDIA ASSAULT ON IRAQ AND ITS PRESIDENT.
¶11. COMING TO ONE OF HIS MAIN POINTS, SADDAM ARGUED THAT USG MANEUVERS WITH THE UAE AND KUWAIT (SIC) ENCOURAGED THEM IN THEIR UNGENEROUS POLICIES….
¶17. SADDAM SAID THAT THE IRAQIS KNOW WHAT WAR IS, WANT NO MORE OF IT–”DO NOT PUSH US TO IT;
DO NOT MAKE IT THE ONLY OPTION LEFT WITH WHICH WE CAN PROTECT OUR DIGNITY.”
¶32. … SADDAM SEEMS TO WANT PLEDGES NOW ON OIL PRICES AND PRODUCTION TO COVER THE NEXT SEVERAL MONTHS.”
As of 8/2, Glaspie reports that Iraq has crossed the border into Kuwait.
Thanks to the phoenixwoman blog for digging this up.