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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

071596_cia_75701_75701_01.txt
Subject: WHY WMD WERE WITHHELD
Not Finally Evaluated Intelligence
TO FACILITATE ELECTRONIC ACCESS, THIS DOCUMENT HAS BEEN
REFORMATTED TO ELIMINATE INFORMATION THAT DOES NOT PERTAIN
TO GULF WAR ILLNESS ISSUES OR THAT IS CLASSIFIED. A COPY OF
THIS REDACTED DOCUMENT, IN ORIGINAL FORMAT, IS AVAILABLE ON
REQUEST.
MARCH 1991
MEMORANDUM
SUBJECT:  IRAQ:  WHY WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION WERE
WITHHELD
1. THE PROSPECT OF COALITION RETALIATION PROBABLY DETERRED
SADDAM FROM EMPLOYING WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION AS PART OF
IRAQ'S INITIAL DEFENSE AGAINST A COALITION GROUND ADVANCE. ONCE
IRAQ'S FORWARD UNITS COLLAPSED A NUMBER OF FACTORS REINFORCED
IRAQI RELUCTANCE AND REDUCED IRAQI CAPABILITY TO EMPLOY CHEMICAL
OR BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS.
2. WHAT INDICATIONS DID WE HAVE OF IRAQI PREPARATIONS FOR
TACTICAL CHEMICAL WARFARE?
IT IS CLEAR          THAT THE RISK OF
IRAQI EMPLOYMENT OF AT LEAST CHEMICAL WEAPONS DURING THE WAR HAD
BEEN VERY HIGH. BAGHDAD'S PREPARATIONS FOR CHEMICAL WARFARE
INDICATE THAT USE OF CHEMICALS WAS CONSIDERED AN OPTION EARLY IN
THE CRISIS.
DECONTAMINATION SITES WERE
THROUGHOUT THE KUWAIT THEATER.
3. WHY DIDN'T IRAQ USE CW IN THE KUWAIT THEATER?
A VARIETY OF REPORTING INDICATES THAT BAGHDAD INITIALLY WAS
PROBABLY DETERRED FROM EMPLOYING CHEMICAL OR BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS
AS PART OF ITS FIRST LINE OF DEFENSE BECAUSE OF THE EXPECTATION
THAT THE COALITION MIGHT RETALIATE MASSIVELY, POSSIBLY EVEN WITH
NUCLEAR WEAPONS.
THE
EXPECTATION OF US NUCLEAR RETALIATION WAS A COMMON
PERCEPTION          AND THAT THIS LED SADDAM TO
NOT USE CHEMICALS.
MANY IN
BAGHDAD BELIEVED THAT THE COALITION WOULD RETALIATE
IMMEDIATELY AND MASSIVELY AS SOON AS IRAQ EMPLOVED CHEMICAL
WEAPONS
IRAQI III CORPS PLANNING STATED THAT
CHEMICAL WEAPONS USE WAS NEVER DISCUSSED IN PLANNING
SESSIONS, AND CORPS STAFF ATTRIBUTED THIS TO SADDAM'S FEAR
OF US NUCLEAR RETALIATION.
4. IT APPEARS THAT SADDAM ESTABLISHED A THRESHOLD, HOWEVER,
AT WHICH HE WAS WILLING TO SET ASIDE HIS FEAR OF RETALIATION AND
USE CHEMICAL WEAPONS.
CHEMICAL WEAPONS WOULD BE USED IF COALITION
FORCES PENETRATED INTO IRAQI TERRITORY. IRAQI PLANS AND
PREPARATIONS NOTWITHSTANDING, A NUMBER OF PRACTICAL FACTORS
PROBABLY CONSTRAINED BAGHDAD'S USE OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS ONCE THAT
THRESHOLD WAS CROSSED BY THE COALITION ADVANCES:
WEATHER CONDITIONS NEVER FAVORED THE USE OF CHEMICAL
WEAPONS. RAIN AND HIGH WINDS THAT MOSTLY BLEW TO THE NORTH-
-ONTO IRAQI UNITS OR TERRITORY--WOULD HAVE GREATLY REDUCED
THE EFFECTIVENESS OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS.
THE BATTLE DEVELOPED SO RAPIDLY THAT BAGHDAD PROBABLY WAS
NEVER ABLE TO EFFECTIVELY TARGET COALITION FORCES.
IN THE WAR WITH IRAN, AIRCRAFT AND GUARD ARTILLERY WERE
BAGHDAD'S PRINCIPAL CHEMICAL DELIVERY MEANS. TOTAL
COALITION AIR SUPREMACY PRECLUDED AIR-DELIVERED CHEMICAL
WEAPONS AND MUCH OF THE GUARD ARTILLERY WAS DESTROYED BY AIR
ATTACK OR OVERRUN BY COALITION GROUND FORCES.
SUBJECT:  IRAQ:  WHY WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION WERE
WITHHELD
REPORTS INDICATE THAT IRAQI CHEMICAL ATTACKS DURING THE WAR
WITH IRAN WERE NORMALLY PLANNED IN ADVANCE PRIOR TO DRAWING
CHEMICAL ROUNDS FROM THEATER RESERVES. THE DISRUPTION OF
IRAQI SUPPLY LINES AND THE LIGHTNING SPEED OF THE COALITION
CAMPAIGN MADE THIS IMPOSSIBLE.
5. WHY DIDN'T IRAQ USE CW ON BALLISTIC MISSILES?
SADDAM WAS PROBABLY SIMILARLY DISSUADED FROM LAUNCHING HIS
SCUDS WITH CHEMICAL OR BIOLOGICAL WARHEADS OUT OF FEAR OF US OR
ISRAELI NUCLEAR RETALIATION. ONCE SADDAM REALIZED THAT
CONVENTIONAL MISSILE ATTACKS HAD FAILED TO DRAG ISRAEL INTO WAR,
HE MAY HAVE CALCULATED THAT EVEN IF ISRAEL WAS FINALLY DRAWN INTO
THE WAR, RESORTING TO WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION WOULD HAVE
CAUSED DISPROPORTIONATE DAMAGE TO IRAQ.
1.5(c)
75701:75701
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