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UQ Wire: Tom Flocco - Iraq Has A Lot Of Nerve!

Unanswered Questions: Thinking For Ourselves
Presented by…


by Tom Flocco *
October 4, 2002

Will Congress Permit Bush 43 to Place Soldiers in Harm’s Way, With Questionable Protective Equipment, Against Same Chemical Weapons that Bush 41 Officials Allowed to be Shipped Illegally to Iraq?

CAPTION: Will Congress assume final responsibility for the safety of anti-nerve gas suits and masks?


U. S. ground troops, soon to be ordered by Congress and President Bush to attack a cornered Saddam Hussein -- knowing his own death is a foregone conclusion -- will face deadly, asphyxiating nerve gas that may penetrate protective masks and suits.

Worse however, the technology and chemicals the Iraqi dictator will use to kill U.S. soldiers, if U. S. commanders require them to fight door-to-door in urban combat among innocent civilians, was developed in America and shipped to Iraq from a Boca Raton, Florida firm just prior to Gulf War I -- with full knowledge of the United States Government.

U. S. armed forces were sent into battle by the Bush 41 presidency against chemical and biological weapons, the components and technology of which were obtained illegally in America by Iraq just before the war.

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Moreover, President Bush’s own biography and a USA Today report (9-8-1998) both document that "George W. Bush was an advisor to (his father) President George H.W. Bush from 1987 to 1992," during the time that poisonous chemical precursors were knowingly transferred from the U.S. to Iraq. So it would have been impossible for the chief advisor to his father -- and future president -- not to have known about it.

Shocking reports reveal that the Florida chemical company (which reported “missing” cyanide illegally shipped via a circuitous route within the U.S. and ultimately to Iraq) allegedly employed attorneys from a Houston, Texas law firm owned by President George H. W. Bush’s Secretary of State James Baker.

The elder Bush absolved Baker and other White House officials from all financial conflicts of interest -- or worse -- by an executive order, even though the President admitted in a “Conflict of Interest Waiver” memo to his Attorney General Richard Thornburgh, that “individuals [in his Administration] have quite substantial financial interests in industries that may be affected (though not necessarily in a ‘direct’ or ‘predictable’ way) by the resolution of situations [regarding the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait] that may arise.” (The White House, 8-8-1990)

The investor in the Florida “food flavoring” plant (whose manufacturing process released by-products used for chemical weapons) was an Iraqi citizen. But astonishingly, the Iraqi native with direct terrorist links also happened to have been the design engineer for Mu‘ammar Qaddafi’s infamous German-built chemical weapons plant in Rabta, Libya.

The chemical weapons plant designer also invested in an Oklahoma City company making fuel additives that extend the range of liquid-fueled missiles such as the SCUD, and a Dallas plant generating anti-corrosive coatings for pipes containing nuclear materials -- while maintaining close personal ties to World Trade Center bomber Ramzi Youssef, according to a number of reports.

CAPTION: Will America's sons and Daughters be safe with protective garments that are defective?



Knowing that statistical data points to the fact that the vast majority of young people in America from whom the military draws its members will not exercise their right to vote in November, Congress is set to empower the off-spring legacy of the Bush 41 presidency to precipitate his new American foreign policy doctrine of pre-emptive [strike first], go-it-alone [without allies], military action against presumed future aggressors.

Such engagement by George W. will place thousands of U.S. ground troops at mortal risk against chemical and biological weapons illegally sent from America to Iraq right up until the Persian Gulf War -- while officials in his father’s administration looked the other way. Within days, President George W. Bush will have completed a seizure of the political stage in America by forcing and hounding a compliant and largely irrelevant Congress into abdicating its responsibility to ask the tough questions about chemical and biological weapons defense left largely unanswered by Gulf War I -- initiated by his father.

“You saw what happened right after Desert Storm. It wiped out the divisions caused by Vietnam, at least for a while. The country came together...” George H. W. Bush

Gone from the cable news spotlight are the scandals of Enron pension and stock fraud -- while more than 20 former Enron executives still remain ensconced and untouched in George Jr.’s Administration. Moreover, the President will not answer why some 9/11 hijackers registered their addresses and automobiles at a secure U.S. Naval air base where a recently-diseased Saudi flight instructor worked. “Come Fly With Me?

Nor will the Chairmen of the Joint Congressional 9/11 Investigation Committee, Senator Bob Graham (D-FL) and Rep. Porter Goss (R-FL), and Secretary of State Colin Powell, CIA Director George Tenet and other Committee members explain why they met with the Chief of Pakistani Intelligence, who the FBI said funded the expenses of the Saudi hijackers, just days before September 11 -- but on the very day of the attacks in the case of Graham, Goss and some Committee members. “Secret Hearings Conceal 9/11 Terrorist Links to Congress and the White House

George W. has successfully diverted attention away from corporate and pension fraud -- not to mention a soft, relatively worthless, mostly clandestine 9/11 congressional investigation.

However, bubbling under Washington’s political surface are suppressed allegations that vast, but hidden profits, secreted away in the off-shore accounts of government officials, may have played a part in the American corporate shipments of poisonous chemical and biological weapons to Iraq -- along with usage instruction provided to Saddam’s troops by our own Department of Defense.

Thus, it is guaranteed that U.S. ground troops will face a barrage of chemical and biological weapons when they enter the city of Baghdad. Saddam will die anyway. He has nothing to lose.

U.S. warnings during Gulf War I that Iraqi use of chemical and biological weapons would result in overwhelming response [read nuclear retaliation] mean nothing this time around, as the Bush Administration has already publicized its decision to “remove” Saddam Hussein from power as the goal of any military action. The President’s press secretary remarked recently that “one bullet would save a lot of time and effort.”

That the Pentagon is quite worried about the “weapons of mass destruction” (WMD) problem was revealed in a recent report in the Washington Post on 9-3-2002. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and military officials are said to be “preparing a campaign aimed at deterring Iraqi officers from firing chemical or biological weapons during a U.S. invasion because intelligence officials believe President Saddam Hussein has given field commanders conditional authority to use WMD in the event of an attack,” according to defense and intelligence officials.

How will the Pentagon convince Saddam’s most loyal commanders in the field to whom the Iraqi dictator has entrusted the control of WMD -- as they threaten to kill members of the Republican Guard refusing to follow orders? Rumsfeld’s secret plan involves “massive leafleting of the Iraqi military positions....and covert techniques that would enable the U.S. message to reach Iraqi commanders,” according to the officials.



While Bush, Rumsfeld, and the Pentagon may be able to convince a largely compliant Congress that leaflets from airplanes will make America’s sons and daughters safe from Saddam’s chemicals and biological agents, worried parents may want assurances via Congressional hearings so that both military-veteran legislators and those of the chicken-hawk variety will assume responsibility for faulty chemical-biological warfare protection equipment.

CAPTION: Which U.S. industrial interests did Donald Rumsfeld privately represent while in Iraq?

Ironically, Defense Secretary Rumsfeld personally visited Baghdad, Iraq on December 20, 1983, basically launching the coming period of military support for Saddam’s regime that he and Bush are now so eager to change, according to Newsweek. Moreover, an embarrassed Rumsfeld tried to brush it off at a recent Senate hearing, telling the legislators that he was there [in Iraq] “as a private citizen...only for a period of months.”

Unfortunately, the Senate was either unaware of or uninformed as to what else Rumsfeld knew -- but had not told them, regarding representation of U.S. industrial interests in Iraq.

“A 1999 review of a sampling of [Mission Oriented Protective Posture (MOPP) ] suits found cuts, holes, embedded foreign matter and stitching irregularities -- defects that could kill the wearer in a ‘chemical-biological contaminated environment.' " - (Associated Press)

There is sufficient evidence that such problems as 1) unsafe and poorly constructed WMD Mission Oriented Protective Posture (MOPP) suits, 2) defective gas masks and 3) nerve gas detection equipment requiring 1,000 times the level considered dangerous to humans before they trigger may come back to haunt families with returning Gulf War II soldiers.

In his book Gassed in the Gulf (Insignia Press), Patrick Eddington, a nine-year CIA intelligence analyst, charged that retired General Colin Powell knew that U.S. soldiers went into Desert Storm wearing defective gas masks and protective suits. The General Accounting Office said the masks and suits still had not been fixed. (Midwest Today, November, 1997)

While Powell denied that he knew of the equipment problems, Eddington explained that in the Fall of 1990 the Army’s Foreign Service and Technology Center was reporting the “that the over-garments -- the nuclear-biological-chemical (NBC) gear our guys were wearing - were completely vulnerable to penetration by dusty chemical agents, which we knew were in the Iraqi inventory. And there was also evidence that the gas mask failure rate was 26% to 44%.” Then Eddington said that “It would be impossible for [Powell] not to know about something that serious,” adding that the Joint Chiefs of Staff were all sent those messages.

"Nuclear-biological-chemical gear our guys were wearing were completely vulnerable to penetration....there was also evidence that the gas mask failure rate was 26% to 44%." (Army Foreign Science & Technology Center)

Military wives and parents may want to question why Congressional oversight was so negligent that it permitted American corporate profiteers to conveniently but illegally provide the very chemical and biological agents which Iraq will use in attempting to kill American ground troops in Iraq

“....General Accounting Office says the masks and suits are still not fixed.” - (Gassed in the Gulf, by Patrick Eddington)

Moreover, Congress may want to inquire whether members of the Bush 43 Administration will benefit from military decisions and advice related to their investments in military hardware or supplies, as did members of the Bush 41 cabinet who held “substantial financial interests in industries that may be the resolution of situations that may arise.” [ regarding Iraq -- if we are to believe George Bush the Elder’s “Conflict of Interest Waiver, signed on August 8, 1990, just after Gulf War I commenced.]

Will Congress have the courage to request or subpoena the financial records of current high-ranking Bush Administration officials and close family members who may stand to profit from financial investments in military-oriented industries related to U.S. ground troops entering combat in the Persian Gulf. Is there another Conflict of Interest Waiver Memo or undisclosed Executive Order signed by George W. that has yet to be divulged? Will Congress ask?

The Associated Press reported that the Pentagon has “issued a warning to its armed forces worldwide that the [MOPP anti-nerve gas] suits meant to protect soldiers from gas and germ attack, cannot be relied upon.” In a pending report from the Pentagon’s Inspector General, “A 1999 review of a sampling of the suits found ‘cuts, holes, embedded foreign irregularities,’ the report said -- defects that could kill the wearer in a ‘chemical-biological contaminated environment,” the AP said.



A West Virginia factory near Charleston stitched together some 778,000 military anti-nerve gas suits that the Defense Department fears may be defective, federal officials said.

(Charleston Gazette, 2-29-2000) The Isratex Inc. plant in Rainelle netted $44 million in defense contracts in the late 1980s and early 1990’s to make the protective suits. Since then, the “plant manager and quality manager have pleaded guilty to criminal charges in the federal probe of shoddy work and fraud by the Brooklyn-based business,” according to the Gazette.

Federal prosecutors in New York indicted six Isratex officials in 1999 on charges alleging they knew they were making faulty suits. To hide the shoddy work, Isratex provided federal inspectors with quality, specially made suits, prosecutors alleged.

Isratex President Abraham Brin and production manager Zvi Rosenthal pleaded guilty to making a false statement. Isratex Vice President Yehudah Yoav Brin fled the country and is considered a fugitive. They were sentenced by the judge. But given the immense fraud and President Bush’s conflict of interest memo, Congress never asked whether absolved cabinet members and national security officials held financial positions in this company.

“The bottom line is we basically poisoned our own troops.” - Rep. Christopher Shays, R-CT, Chairman, House Human Resources Subcmte. (Midwest Today, November, 1997)

At a three-hour hearing on Capitol Hill just days ago on October 1, 2002, Congressman Christopher Shays asked if the troops were not just playing "Russian roulette" when being issued protective garments. And according to a Navy Times story by Vince Crawley, some 250,000 anti-nerve gas garments with Lot Numbers DLA100-92-C-0427 or DLA100-89-C-0429 from the now bankrupt "Isratex" Corporation have been recalled and company officials are now in jail.

Military wives and parents would be wise to email or write their loved ones to check out these numbers -- before the White House gang that couldn't shoot straight sends them into Iraq. And opening up and checking their parachutes would not be a bad idea either -- since President Bush insists that the United States borders must be kept open for "cultural and historical reasons," the safety of the citizens regarding terrorists crossing over be damned.

Shays said Defense Department officials said they had no evidence that the defective suits had been destroyed and no way to track them if they were not destroyed. The Navy Times has also reported that there are indications of sabotaged U.S. Marine parachutes with cords having been cut. And inventory checks indicated that someone had cut cords in other parachutes in supply inventories as well.

There are no reports as to whether other Congressmen besides Shays have been concerned enough about the safety of the American military to question Defense Secretary Rumsfeld and the President as to why they are sending Americans into nerve-gassed battlefield environments or asking them to jump out of planes with equipment that either does not function properly or has been sabotaged by terrorists permitted to enter the country via open borders or negligent immigration officials issuing militant Muslims visas to enter legally.

As Congress validates Mr. Bush’s shoot-first-ask-questions-later military approach with its obvious drastic implications, will legislators have the sense to override his continued refusal to seal our borders from an inflamed Muslim world totally bent on retaliation against U.S. imperialism? Will we oblige Middle Eastern terrorists with a poorly-guarded border that leaks like a sieve?

CAPTION: “Thine alabaster cities gleam -- undimmed by human tears.”

Consider some of the revelations of late 1996 -- early 1997, found in a devastating article by Larry Jordan in the November, 1997 issue of Midwest Today Magazine -- with current implications as yet unquestioned publicly by either Congress....or a presidential coterie of pre-emptive striking warmongers -- chomping at the bit to get the war going:

· Researchers at the renowned Duke University Medical School have concluded that three medications given by the U.S. government to Gulf War soldiers to inoculate them against the effects of potential chemical and pesticide exposure drugs thought to be harmless individually -- though some were not approved by the FDA for human use -- were devastating when administered in combination. The symptoms produced by the triage of drugs -- which Senate hearings revealed had never been simultaneously administered to people before -- are identical to ones reported by ailing Gulf War veterans.

· U.S. soldiers were sent into the Gulf with protective suits and gas masks known to be defective -- a charge hotly denied by officials, but proven by declassified memos that circulated among the highest echelons of government. [Will upcoming anti-war demonstrations include protestations against bullets, bombs AND faulty WMD gear?]

· Instruments used to detect the presence of nerve gas, though highly sophisticated, still required 1,000 times the level considered dangerous to humans before they were triggered. Over 14,000 alarms went off during the course of the war, but [incredibly] troops were told they were all false alarms. [Will Congress care enough about its military to take full responsibility for the safety of this equipment BEFORE Mr. Bush sends America’s son’s and daughters into ground combat?]

· CIA documents show U.S. forces had no detectors for biological agents. [Since wide reports reveal that our government sent the West Nile Virus to Iraq for use as a WMD, Congress should assure its constituents that such equipment is being used and that it works properly.]

· Poor military supervision was affected, in that due precautions were not taken when soldiers were ordered to destroy known Iraqi chemical weapons bunkers. On at least one occasion, upwards of 130,000 U.S. soldiers in seven units were downwind from toxic cloud of deadly sarin gas -- a concern of all military wives and parents.

· It was the United States (along with other allies), who originally provided the government of Iraq with so-called “dual-use” materials to develop their chemical and biological programs, including chemical warfare agent production facility plans and technical drawings (provided as pesticide production facility plans), chemical warhead filling equipment, chemical warfare agent precursors, and biological warfare-related materials.

· Dense, acrid smoke from an estimated 605 Kuwaiti oil well fires literally turned noonday into night, with a darkness so dense it could not be pierced with a flashlight. Moreover, it rained droplets of oil and birds fell from the sky. Multitudes of Iraqi tanks and ammo dumps were destroyed, contributing to the most toxic battlefield conditions in history. Many soldiers are still afflicted with severe respiratory illnesses, no doubt from inhaling the polluted air, which the Pentagon did not adequately equip them to guard against.

· Many with Gulf War Syndrome illness have been infected with a contagious form of the organism mycoplasma incognitus (MI). This organism was first discovered at the U.S. Army Institute of Pathology in 1989 as a presence in seven out of ten patients with AIDS. The research of two renowned microbiologists, Drs. Garth and Nancy Nicolson, has also lead them to a tentative conclusion that the Mycoplasma may have been genetically engineered in a U.S. laboratory.

· A new anti-tank ammunition containing radioactive uranium was used by U.S. troops for the first time in the Gulf. Many of them came in contact with it without being informed of the dangers.

“It is clear that the CIA as well as the Defense Department has been complicit in a stonewall, if not a cover up.”
(The Washington Post, April 11, 1997)

· Documents obtained by the Nation Magazine purportedly show the Pentagon knew of the dangers of Depleted Uranium, but were mainly concerned about bad publicity, once even re-phrasing a description of it to hide its radioactivity from Americans.

· There is a strong probability that, in the words of former CIA analyst, Patrick Eddington, the Iraqis were firing artillery shells or rockets with low ranges of chemicals. “That way there wouldn’t be any massive and immediate fatalities. The soldiers would just get sick over time. It would be hard to be sure what caused it.”

In the upcoming conclusion of this investigative story, there are yet additional revelations to be examined in order to help inform citizens about the realities of what many current members and advisors of the Bush 43 Administration did when they worked in the Bush 41 Administration -- actions of both a military and financial nature that will have potentially grave consequences for the wives and parents of American citizens.

For it is astounding how quickly members of Congress jumped in line behind the veterans, chicken-hawks, neo-conservatives, and out-right war-mongers -- with next to no substantial debate and with virtually no serious questions about the implications of chemical-biological warfare with faulty equipment.

Of critical importance is the issue of “cui bono?” -- for whose good? -- who benefits?

Will we really be safer for killing Arabs if we fail to seal our borders against the coming retaliation? Does the prosecution of war divert attention away from the White House, FBI, CIA, INS, FAA, and TSA regarding the unanswered questions of 9/11?

Will the commission of what amounts to Arab genocide provide quick but surreptitious corporate profits for an Administration marinated in oil? Are legislators simply afraid to listen to their consciences -- let alone the Constitution -- and say no to the kind of war that places America’s sons and daughters on the ground in a warfare environment -- the technology, chemicals, and instruction of which our own country provided to Iraq?

Are undisclosed, hidden agendas involving other countries clouding the war issue which legislators are considering -- to the life and death detriment of their young constituents?

Senator Robert Byrd (D-WV), exhibiting outstanding oratory that echoed in the well of the Senate, probably said it best on the Phil Donohue Show: “I don’t want to be on the wrong side of the Constitution. We are giving an open-ended blank check to allow the President to take our armies and do with them whatever he wants, whenever he wants, and however he wants -- and all covered over with the fig-leaves of whereases. It is wrong, wrong, wrong. I want to base my decisions on the Constitution.”

Will the citizenry respond? Are the polls really validating a presidential “blank-check?" Will Congress actually permit the president to send 250-300,000 ground troops into an unsafe environment with faulty equipment described above? Will the People teach Members of Congress a lesson at the polls in November? Parents and wives about to lose a son, daughter or husband in coming weeks may want more assurances than either Congress or Mr. Bush is willing to provide.

********* ENDS *********

- Additional research was provided by Michael Thomas and Melissa Ennen.

Copyright (c) 2002 by Thomas Flocco.

* - Tom Flocco is an independent investigative journalist who has written for,,,,,, and
- Contact: see also

STANDARD DISCLAIMER FROM UQ.ORG: does not necessarily endorse the views expressed in the above article. We present this in the interests of research - for the relevant information we believe it contains. We hope that the reader finds in it inspiration to work with us further, in helping to build bridges between our various investigative communities, towards a greater, common understanding of the unanswered questions which now lie before us.

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