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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

27 March Iraq Special Weapons News

US Policy
United Nations
Foreign Reactions
News Reports

Current Operations

  • TRANSCRIPT OF 3/27 CENTCOM BRIEFING CENTCOM 27 Mar 2003 -- "Today is the seventh day since the coalition ground forces entered Iraq. Our plan is working, and we're one day closer to achieving our objectives. We will continue until all of our objectives are attained. Day by day, we significantly diminish the regime's ability to command and control its forces. As we do, we witness the regime's forces becoming more and more desperate in their actions."
  • Transcript: Press Conference at the Ministry of Defence UK MInistry of Defence 27 Mar 2003 -- "The poor weather that they have been experiencing out there in Iraq over the last couple of days, the reduced visibility, now has been clearing. But the slowdown that it caused has allowed our combat power close to Baghdad and Basrah, that is to say the armour, the infantry and the vital sustained logistics, it has allowed them some sphere of consolidation and recuperation. The air campaign is continuing apace with the Royal Air Force flying around 100 sorties a day, and they have successfully attacked and destroyed targets, ranging from regime headquarters to Iraqi forces in the field, and they have knocked out numerous tanks. And in addition, our helicopters have also been supporting our forces throughout the United Kingdom area of operations."
  • Statement by Air Marshal Brian Burridge, UK National Contingent Commander UK Ministry of Defence 27 Mar 2003 -- 'should like to start by addressing the shocking close up pictures broadcast by Al Jazeera last night. They claim that these show UK personnel killed during recent operations. Quite apart from the obvious distress that such pictures could cause friends and families of the personnel concerned, such disgraceful behaviour is a flagrant breach of the Geneva Convention. We have yet to undertake formal identification but it is probable that these are the two UK personnel who were listed as missing last Sunday. "
  • Transcript: Media Briefing Australia's contribution to global operations Australian Department of Defence 27 Mar 2003 -- "To begin today, there are a number of media reports that I'd like to correct from yesterday. The first is a report that Australian C-130 aircraft are operating in Iraq. This report is wrong. They are not."

  • B-2 STRIKES KEY IRAQI COMMUNICATIONS FACILITY CENTCOM 27 Mar 2003 -- A United States Air Force B-2 Spirit bomber targeted and struck a major link in Iraq's national communication network at approximately 4:30p.m. EST.
  • Supply lines pumping, sorties rolling AFPN 27 Mar 2003 -- B-52 Stratofortresses keep rolling down the runway at a deployed location, carrying the fight and firepower to the Iraqi regime.
  • C-17 crews conduct historic airborne operation AFPN 27 Mar 2003 -- Under the cover of darkness, almost 1,000 "Sky Soldiers" of the 173rd Airborne Brigade parachuted from C-17 Globemaster IIIs into the Kurdish-controlled area of northern Iraq. This was the first combat insertion of paratroopers using a C-17.
  • Abe Helps Start Operation Iraqi Freedom Navy NewStand 27 Mar 2003 -- In the early morning hours of March 20, the dispersal of U.S. Air Force F-117 bombers and missile launches from submarine and surface warships marked the opening scene of "Operation Iraqi Freedom."
  • Strikes Continue Despite Weather Conditions Navy NewStand 27 Mar 2003 -- As USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) and Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 3 adjust to the hectic schedule of combat operations, the Sailors and Marines aboard are battling more than just the forces of tyranny in Iraq. They are also up against the primal forces of mother nature.
  • Rumsfeld Says U.S. Forces Flowing Into Iraq Daily Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- Testifying on the seventh day of coalition military operations in Iraq, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said U.S. forces "are still flowing into the region," with more arriving daily.
  • CENTCOM Officer Says Iraqi Missile May Have Caused Civilian Deaths Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- U.S. Central Command officials believe "it's entirely possible" that an Iraqi surface-to-air missile fired wildly without being guided by radar may be responsible for the deaths of 14 civilians in the northern Baghdad Shaab marketplace, says Army Brigadier General Vincent Brooks.
  • U.S. Forces Secure Airbase in Northern Iraq Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- U.S. paratroopers landed in a Kurdish-controlled area of northern Iraq during a nighttime airdrop March 26, establishing a secure airbase at Harir, and were followed by U.S. mechanized infantry forces arriving by air transport, a U.S. Central Command briefing officer said.
  • Supply lines keep sorties rolling ACCNS 27 Mar 2003 -- B-52s keep rolling down the runway at this deployed location, carrying the fight and firepower to the dying Iraqi regime.
  • IRAQ WRAP 3rd UPDATE VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Some of the heaviest allied air attacks in days rocked the Iraqi capital Baghdad Thursday night, with one of Saddam Hussein's compounds and other command and control centers said to be among the targets. President Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair are preparing their public for the possibility of a longer conflict than anticipated, while vowing the allies will fight for as long as it takes to remove Saddam Hussein from power.
  • IRAQ / WAR TOLL VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Iraq is blaming coalition forces for what it says are thousands of civilians wounded and hundreds killed in the first week of the war.
  • BRITAIN/IRAQ/W-M-D VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Senior British officials say their troops in southern Iraq have found more evidence that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein may be planning to use chemical weapons.
  • IRAQ / WAR RULES VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Coalition forces have complained that Iraq has been violating rules of the Geneva Conventions in several ways. The guardian of Geneva Conventions, the International Committee of the Red Cross, says without these rules war-time atrocities would probably be more common than they are. The Geneva Conventions have been incorporated into the military training of 190-countries.
  • Iraq: Fighting Continues In South As Paratroopers Land In North RFE/L 27 Mar 2003 -- The war in Iraq has opened its second week, with Baghdad coming under renewed bombardment and about 1,000 U.S. troops parachuting into Kurdish-controlled northern Iraq to prepare the opening of a northern front against President Saddam Hussein's forces.
  • Iraq: Northern Front Bolstered; British Troops Destroy 14 Tanks Near Basra RFE/L 27 Mar 2003 -- U.S. troops have arrived in the north of Iraq to prepare the opening of a northern front in the war.
  • Bomb Builders in Demand and on the Job Navy NewStand 27 Mar 2003 -- As the world's attention is on coalition strikes against Iraq, Sailors aboard USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) are building bombs that may ultimately affect the outcome of the war.
  • IRAQ WRAP VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- The fighting in Iraq continued on several fronts in Thursday, aided by improving weather conditions throughout the country. Meanwhile, President Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair said they are committed to victory however long it takes.
  • IRAQ / DEFENSE MINISTER VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Iraq's defense minister warns U-S-led forces will face a tough street-to-street fight once they reach Baghdad in what he predicts will be five to 10 days.
  • Supply lines keep sorties rolling ACCNS 27 Mar 2003 -- B-52s keep rolling down the runway at this deployed location, carrying the fight and firepower to the dying Iraqi regime.
  • IRAQ / BRIEFING VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Commanders of the U-S led coalition in Iraq say the one-thousand U-S troops that parachuted into northern Iraq Thursday could be used to protect Kurds in the region or for an offensive on Baghdad.
  • PENTAGON / FEDAYEEN VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- U-S military commanders are downplaying the overall threat posed to Operation Iraqi Freedom by thousands of Fedayeen Saddam paramilitary forces. But some officials are accusing war planners of failing to heed warnings about the extent of their likely resistance as well as their brutality.
  • BLAIR IRAQ EXECUTIONS VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- British Prime Minister Tony Blair says two British soldiers have been executed by Iraqi forces. Pictures of their bodies were shown on the Arabic satellite television station al-Jazeera.
  • IRAQ WOUNDED VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- An ambush, rockets flying through the air, and civilians who turned out to be Iraqi troops. It's all part of a hair-raising account of the battle as told by three wounded U-S soldiers who were attacked near the southern Iraqi city of Nasiriyah. They spoke to reporters at the U-S military Medical Center in Landstuhl, Germany Thursday where they are recovering from their wounds.
  • US / IRAQ OPPOSITION VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- The United States said Thursday it opposes plans by Iraqi exile figures to set up a provisional government for the country in anticipation of the fall of Saddam Hussein. The State Department says the move, announced by Iraqi opposition politicians meeting in Kurdish-controlled northern Iraq, would "disenfranchise" the majority of Iraqis still under the control of the current government.
  • IRAQ / ATROCITIES VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- U-S jets have struck targets in the central Iraqi city of Najaf, where witnesses say atrocities are being committed by members of Saddam Hussein's Special Republican Guards and paramilitary fighters.
  • 3rd ID drives toward assault on Baghdad Army News 27 Mar 2003 -- After a push deep into Iraq, the 3rd Infantry Division (Mech.) consolidated its forces northwest of Najaf March 25, about 60 miles from Baghdad, expecting a final assault on Republican Guard units ringing the capital.
  • Engineers to extinguish Iraqi oil fires Army News 27 Mar 2003 -- While U.S. and coalition forces continue their advance to Baghdad, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers received the mission to extinguish fires in Southern Iraqi oil fields.
  • BRITAIN /IRAQ VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Senior British officials say reports of large Iraqi counterattacks against coalition forces are false, and they say they have found more evidence that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein may be planning to use chemical weapons.
  • Coalition Air Forces Fly 1,500 Missions March 26 AFPS 27 Mar 2003 -- Coalition air forces struck repeatedly at Iraqi Republican Guard formations March 26, defense officials said.
  • PATRIOT BATTERY INTERCEPTS 3RD IRAQI MISSILE CENTCOM 27 Mar 2003 -- For the third time during Operation Iraqi Freedom, a Kuwaiti PATRIOT firing battery successfully intercepted and destroyed one Iraqi ballistic missile during an attack on U.S. and Coalition forces in Kuwait at approximately 11:30 a.m. (3:30 a.m. EST) yesterday, March 26.
  • Rota's Fleet Hospital 8 Receives First Combat Casualties Navy NewStand 27 Mar 2003 -- Seven injured servicemembers arrived for treatment at Fleet Hospital (FH) 8 aboard Naval Station Rota late March 26.
  • Shock and Awesome; Truman Planes Rule the Night Navy NewStand 27 Mar 2003 -- Armed to the teeth with 6,000 pounds of live ordinance each, 13 aircraft aboard USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) were catapulted into the night sky toward Baghdad March 21 as part of the first wave of the "Shock and Awe" campaign of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
  • Iraq: Sporadic Fighting Continues As First Food Aid Arrives RFE/L 27 Mar 2003 -- U.S. and British forces have been engaged in continued sporadic battles in central and southern Iraq as the first significant shipment of humanitarian aid began to reach the country.
  • IRAQ / WRAP VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- U-S soldiers have parachuted into Kurdish-controlled northern Iraq, to open what U-S officials hope will be a northern front in the war to oust Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. Meanwhile, more explosions have rocked Baghdad, and, in the south, British forces say they have destroyed much of an Iraqi armored column that moved out of Basra.
  • IRAQ/WAR TOLL VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Iraq claims thousands of Iraqi civilians have been wounded and hundreds killed as the result of the first week of war.
  • IRAQ / BRITISH TROOPS VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- U-S paratroopers have landed in the Kurdish area of northern Iraq, while British military officials say they have foiled an attempt by Iraqi troops to break out of the southern Iraqi city of Basra.
  • IRAQ / U-S TROOPS VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- One thousand U-S troops have parachuted into northern Iraq to open another front in the war to disarm and depose the Iraqi government.
  • Airborne Opens New Front in Iraq; Mines Delay Food Aid in Umm Qasr AFPS 27 Mar 2003 -- Several hundred "Sky Soldiers" of the 173rd Airborne Brigade opened a new front in a Kurdish-controlled area of northern Iraq, defense officials announced.


US Policy

  • Myers Speaks to Arab World via Al Jazeera AFPS 27 Mar 2003 -- The United States has absolutely no desire to stay in Iraq any longer than necessary, the U.S. military's senior officer told the Arab world today.
  • Bush, Blair Say Coalition Forces Making Steady Progress in Iraq Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- Coalition forces are making steady progress in Iraq and will be victorious, no matter how long the fighting takes, President Bush and Britain's Prime Minister Tony Blair told reporters at a joint press conference March 27.
  • U.S. Outlines Guiding Principles for Iraq's Future Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- The United States laid out its "guiding principles" for the future of Iraq during a Security Council meeting March 27 after urging the council to make the necessary adjustments to the U.N. oil-for-food program so that almost $9,000 million in humanitarian supplies can be channeled quickly to Iraqi civilians.
  • Negroponte Says Coalition Aspires to Liberate, Not Occupy, Iraq Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- U.S. Ambassador John Negroponte, in a March 27 statement to the U.N. Security Council, outlined the five "guiding principles" of the United States as it looks to the future of Iraq.
  • Humanitarian Aid to Iraqi People a Focus of Bush-Blair Talks Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- The need to restart the United Nations oil-for-food program to feed the Iraqi people was a main focus of two days of discussions at Camp David between President Bush and Britain's Prime Minister Tony Blair, a senior administration official said late March 27.
  • Resolution Urges Coalition to Avoid Damage to Antiquities Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- Representative Phil English (Republican of Pennsylvania) has introduced a resolution in the House of Representatives that urges all governments engaged in the Iraq War to work to "avoid damage to the cultural antiquities in that country."
  • Rumsfeld: Saddam's 'Death Squads' Preventing More Iraqi Surrenders AFPS 27 Mar 2003 -- U.S. Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld has a three-word answer to why more Iraqi troops aren't laying down their arms and surrendering to coalition forces: Saddam's death squads.
  • PENTAGON: THE NAME GAME VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- In war, for the troops, bullets and bombs are crucial to the fight. But for the political figures behind the soldiers, words, too, are considered vitally important. Getting the right words in Operation Iraqi Freedom is often a challenge.
  • Regime Threatening Children to Make Men Fight AFPS 27 Mar 2003 -- Saddam Hussein's regime is forcing men to fight by threatening children, U.S. Central Command officials in Qatar said today.
  • Marine Gen. Peter Pace Decries Iraqi War Crimes AFPS 27 Mar 2003 -- Iraqi forces loyal to Saddam Hussein have executed coalition troops and committed other "disgusting" war crimes, U.S. Marine Gen. Peter Pace said March 26.
  • PENTAGON / RUMSFELD VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- U-S Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says coalition forces in Iraq will need to destroy or capture Iraqi President Saddam Hussein's Republican Guard units in order to defeat the regime.
  • Bush, Blair: Coalition Loosening Iraqi Regime's 'Grip of Terror' AFPS 27 Mar 2003 -- "Slowly, but surely, the grip of terror around the throats of the Iraqi people is being loosened," President Bush said today.
  • EDITORIAL: BUSH ON IRAQI AID VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- How is the U.S.-led campaign going in Iraq? In the words of President George W. Bush, the coalition efforts to free the people of Iraq from the tyranny of Saddam Hussein are steadily advancing
  • BUSH / IRAQ VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- President Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair say there is slow but steady progress in the war in Iraq, and the two leaders vow that Saddam Hussein will be removed from power. They are also calling on the U-N to resume a program that enables Iraq to sell oil so it can buy food.
  • CONGRESS/WAR FUNDING VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has told Congress it must move quickly to approve the 74-point-seven-billion dollar request to pay the initial costs of the U.S.-led war in Iraq. Although most lawmakers support the war effort, some are skeptical about how money will be spent.
  • EDITORIAL: SADDAM'S FEDAYEEN TERROR VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Growing numbers of Iraqis are refusing, with good reason, to fight for Saddam Hussein. Many of those who are fighting for him are making clear the evil nature of his regime, as President George W. Bush pointed out

United Nations

  • UN / IRAQ UPDATE VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- The U-N Security Council has apparently reached an agreement on resuming the oil-for-food program to provide humanitarian relief to the Iraqi people.
  • Local UN staff still working in Iraq to bring relief to civilian population UN News Centre 27 Mar 2003 -- United Nations relief agencies reported today that their 3,400 local staff in Iraq were doing all they could to bring relief to the civilian population and perform their functions despite the withdrawal of international personnel on the eve of hostilities.
  • Security Council ends Iraq debate, hears overwhelming appeal for aid to civilians UN News Centre 27 Mar 2003 -- The United Nations Security Council today wrapped up its first debate on Iraq since hostilities began on 19 March, with speakers making an overwhelming appeal for humanitarian relief for the civilian population despite their differences over the military action now being waged.
  • UN / IRAQ VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- At the United Nations, despite overwhelming Security Council support for resuming the oil-for-food program, the U-S proposal to modify the program is drawing opposition. The U-S ambassador at one point in the debate walked out.
  • HUMAN RIGHTS/IRAQ VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- The top U-N human rights body has rejected a call to hold an emergency meeting on Iraq.
  • UN human rights chief makes fresh appeal to protect civilians in Iraq UN News Centre 27 Mar 2003 -- Expressing increasing concern for the welfare of the people of Iraq, the top United Nations human rights official issued a fresh appeal today to all parties to respect fundamental civil liberties and observe meticulous precautions in protecting civilians.
  • Blix sees no evidence Iraq has used banned weapons UN News Centre 27 Mar 2003 -- Top United Nations weapons inspector Hans Blix said today he had no evidence that Iraq had used banned weapons in the current conflict nor did he think they would use them.
  • IRAQ-IRAN: No Iraqi refugees reported, says UNHCR IRIN 27 Mar 2003 -- The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Iran confirmed on Thursday that no refugees had entered the country since the commencement of the conflict in Iraq eight days earlier. Iran could be on the receiving end of a major influx of refugees along its 1,458-km border with Iraq, with the refugee agency working to boost its overall state of preparedness.

Foreign Reactions

  • U.S. invasion of Iraq denounced KCNA 27 Mar 2003 -- The south headquarters of the National Alliance for the Country's Reunification (Pomminryon) reportedly issued a statement on March 21 denouncing the Iraqi war ignited by the U.S. The statement branded the U.S. which stoops to any infamy for its interests as an axis of evil menacing peace of the whole world.
  • U.S. invasion of Iraq denounced KCNA 27 Mar 2003 -- The south headquarters of the National Alliance for the Country's Reunification (Pomminryon) reportedly issued a statement on March 21 denouncing the Iraqi war ignited by the U.S. The statement branded the U.S. which stoops to any infamy for its interests as an axis of evil menacing peace of the whole world.
  • Hubbard Thanks for Seoul's Support Korea-net 27 Mar 2003 -- The United States on Thursday (March 27) conveyed its thanks for South Korea's support for its war on Iraq, Cheong Wa Dae said.
  • THE WAR FOR IRAQ VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- coalition led by the United States, Great Britian and Spain is fighting a war to liberate Iraq and rid it of weapons of mass destruction. A precision bombing campaign in and around Baghdad has targeted strongholds of Saddam Hussein's regime. U-S and British troops have raced across the desert to challenge the Iraqi Republican Guards. In Southern Iraq, coalition forces have been fighting irregular forces loyal to Saddam Hussein. Saddam's Fedayeen, as the militia is called, have pretended to be civilians to lure coalition forces into ambushes. They've used non-combatants as human shields and have turned a hospital into an arsenal.
  • THE TRANSATLANTIC SPLIT VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Foreign policy experts say the deep disagreements over how to deal with Iraq could foreshadow far-reaching changes in the traditionally close relationship between the United States and Western Europe.
  • ITALY / IRAQ / U-S VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- The Italian prime minister's office issued a statement Thursday saying U-S Army paratroopers based in northern Italy would not be used for direct attacks on Iraqi targets. The government came under fire from the opposition after it became clear that paratroopers from the air base at Vicenza had been flown into Iraq.
  • INDONESIA/IRAQ VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- A small Indonesian radical group says it is signing up volunteers to go fight against the United States in Iraq, a move the Indonesian government opposes.
  • AUSTRALIA IRAQ OPINION VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Opinion polls in Australia show a surge in support for the war on Iraq. For the first time, more Australians approve of military action to disarm Saddam than oppose it. Australia has sent two thousand troops to Iraq along with fighter jets and warships.
  • Tehran to host fewer Iraqi refugees if conflict begins IRIN 27 Mar 2003 -- Iran has reduced the number of refugees it intends to host in case of a US-led strike against Iraq to 200,000 people, the state news agency IRNA quoted an interior ministry official as saying on Sunday. These refugees would be cared for in just 10 camps. Iran has earlier stated it was planning to establish a total of 19 camps along the border.

News Reports

  • Pollack Predicts Iraq War Will Last 4 to 10 Weeks Despite Early Setbacks Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- A former Iran-Iraq military analyst for the Central Intelligence Agency, now with the Washington-based Brookings Institution think tank, predicts that the war against Iraq will take from "four to ten weeks."
  • Brookings Institution Panel Discusses U.S. Post-War Challenges Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- Gaining wide international support for rebuilding Iraq and dealing with future crises will be among the most difficult challenges the United States will face once the war in Iraq is over, said a panel of experts at the Brookings Institution in Washington March 25.
  • WAR: EMERGING PERSPECTIVES VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- As the war with Irar it grinds on, newspapers around the world are voicing reservations about the conflict.
  • IRAQIS GOING HOME VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Its now been a week since the start of the war in Iraq, and very few refugees have been reported crossing into Jordan. But Jordanian officials say several thousand Iraqis have headed the other way, leaving the kingdom to return home. Some are going home to be with their families. Others say they are leaving to join those fighting U-S and British forces.
  • NEW YORK / PROTEST VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- Demonstrators tied up Fifth Avenue, one of New York's main thoroughfares, during the morning rush hour to protest the U-S-led war in Iraq.
  • BACKGROUND REPORT - Shiites in Iraq VOA 27 Mar 2003 -- On Tuesday, British forces outside Basra, in southern Iraq, reported signs of a civilian rebellion against the rule of Saddam Hussein. Iraq called the charges "lies." Basra is the second largest city in Iraq, after the capital. The British fired artillery at Iraqi forces in the city who they said were shelling civilians. Wednesday, Britain's Prime Minister Tony Blair said he believed there was what he called a "limited form of uprising." But Arab television had conflicting reports.
  • Treasury Official Says More Iraqi Money Uncovered Abroad Washington File 27 Mar 2003 -- A U.S. Treasury Department official says hundreds of millions of dollars of "previously unknown illegal proceeds" have been uncovered abroad and are subject to seizure.
  • IRAQ: IRIN interview with IOM head Brunson McKinley IRIN 27 Mar 2003 -- IRIN interview with IOM head Brunson McKinley
  • IRAQ-IRAN: Interview with the Iranian Red Crescent IRIN 27 Mar 2003 -- With more than two million volunteers in the country, the Iranian Red Crescent Society (IRCS) says it is ready to deal, to a certain extent, with a refugee crisis arising from the conflict in Iraq. As some 80 percent of Iraqis live near the border with Iran, hundreds of thousands could flee into the Islamic Republic of Iran.

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