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From owner-imap@chumbly.math.missouri.edu Thu Dec 12 07:30:14 2002
Date: Wed, 11 Dec 2002 21:00:20 -0600 (CST)
From: Brian Subject: [toeslist] Bush plan
Article: 148289
To: undisclosed-recipients:;

Bush's Mideast plan: Conquer and divide

By Eric Margolis, sunpub.com, 8 December 2002

NEW YORK -- Arms inspections are a hoax, said Tariq Aziz, Iraq's deputy prime minister, in a forthright and chilling interview with ABC News last week. War is inevitable.

Aziz is the smartest, most credible member of President Saddam Hussein's otherwise sinister regime - my view after covering Iraq since 1976.

What the U.S. wants is not regime change in Iraq but rather region change, charged Aziz. He tersely summed up the Bush administration's reasons for war against Iraq: Oil and Israel.

Aziz's undiplomatic language underlines growing fears across the Mideast that U.S. President George Bush intends to use a manufactured war against Iraq to redraw the political map of the region, put it under permanent U.S. military control, and seize its vast oil resources.

These are not idle alarms.

Senior administration officials openly speak of invading Iran, Syria, Libya and Lebanon. Influential neo-conservative think-tanks in Washington have deployed a small army of experts on TV, urging the U.S. to remove governments deemed unfriendly to the U.S. and Israel.

Washington's most powerful lobbies - for oil and Israel - are urging the U.S. to seize Mideast oil and crush any regional states that might one day challenge Israel's nuclear monopoly or regional dominance.

The radical transformation of the Mideast being considered by the Bush administration is potentially the biggest political change since the notorious 1916 Sykes-Picot Treaty in which victorious Britain and France carved up the Ottoman-ruled region.

Possible scenarios under review at the highest levels:

Iran a principal foe

The lines drawn in the Mideast by old European imperial powers are now to be redrawn by the world's newest imperial power, the United States. But as veteran soldiers know, even the best strategic plans become worthless once real fighting begins.