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Encyclopedia > Arms sales to Iraq


Imports of conventional arms by Iraq 1973-1990, by source

Values are shown in millions of US dollars at constant (1990) estimated values. "Soviet Union and Warsaw Pact" includes Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Hungary, Poland, and Romania. The majority of these transfers came from the Soviet Union, followed by Czechoslovakia. GDR redirects here. ...

Year Soviet Union
and Warsaw Pact
France China (PRC) United
Egypt Others Total
1973 1,321 5 0 0 0 0 1,326
1974 1,471 5 0 0 0 0 1,476
1975 1,087 35 0 0 0 0 1,122
1976 1,161 119 0 0 0 0 1,280
1977 1,062 106 0 0 0 0 1,168
1978 1,827 26 0 0 0 20 1,873
1979 1,108 78 0 0 0 17 1,203
1973-79 9,037 374 0 0 0 37 9,448
1973-79 95.7% 4.0% 0 0 0 0.4% 100%
1980 1,665 241 0 0 12 114 2,032
1981 1,780 731 0 0 46 182 2,739
1982 2,023 673 217 0 71 227 3,211
1980-82 5,468 1,645 217 0 129 523 7,982
1980-82 68.5% 20.6% 2.7% 0 1.6% 6.6% 100%
1983 1,898 779 745 21 58 773 4,274
1984 2,857 883 1,065 6 0 116 4,927
1985 2,601 700 1,036 9 32 116 4,494
1986 2,663 251 918 9 70 86 3,997
1987 2,719 214 887 30 114 157 4,121
1988 1,202 355 301 125 118 196 2,297
1983-88 13,940 3,182 4,952 200 392 1,444 24,110
1983-88 57.8% 13.2% 20.5% 0.8 1.6% 6.0% 100%
1989 1,319 113 23 0 47 67 1569
1990 537 281 0 0 0 33 851
Total $'s 30,301 5,595 5,192 200 568 2,104 43,960
Total %'s 68.9% 12.7% 11.8% 0.5% 1.3% 4.8% 100%

Source: Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) Unofficial Seal of the Warsaw Pact Distinguish from the Warsaw Convention, which is an agreement about airlines financial liability and the Treaty of Warsaw (1970) between West Germany and the Peoples Republic of Poland. ... Anthem YìyÇ’ngjÅ«n JìnxíngqÇ”   (义勇军进行曲/義勇軍進行曲) March of the Volunteers Capital Beijing Largest city Shanghai Official languages Mandarin Chinese1 Government Socialist republic2  -  President Hu Jintao  -  Premier Wen Jiabao Establishment  -  Peoples Republic declared October 1, 1949  Area  -  Total 9,596,960 km² (3rd / 4th4) 3,704,4273 sq... Motto: (Out Of Many, One) (traditional) In God We Trust (1956 to date) Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner Capital Washington D.C. Largest city New York City None at federal level (English de facto) Government Federal constitutional republic  - President George Walker Bush (R)  - Vice President Dick Cheney (R) Independence from... 1973 (MCMLXXIII) was a common year starting on Monday. ... 1974 (MCMLXXIV) was a common year starting on Tuesday. ... 1975 (MCMLXXV) was a common year starting on Wednesday. ... Year 1976 (MCMLXXVI) was a leap year starting on Thursday (link will display full calendar) of the 1976 Gregorian calendar. ... Also: 1977 (album) by Ash. ... Year 1978 (MCMLXXVIII) was a common year starting on Sunday (link displays the 1978 Gregorian calendar). ... Also: 1979 by Smashing Pumpkins. ... Year 1980 (MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1980 Gregorian calendar). ... Year 1981 (MCMLXXXI) was a common year starting on Thursday (link displays the 1981 Gregorian calendar). ... -1... 1983 (MCMLXXXIII) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1984 (MCMLXXXIV) was a leap year starting on Sunday (link displays the 1984 Gregorian calendar). ... 1985 (MCMLXXXV) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1986 (MCMLXXXVI) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1987 (MCMLXXXVII) was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... MCMXC redirects here; for the Enigma album, see MCMXC a. ...

SIPRI makes the following comment of the methodology of this table: "The SIPRI data on arms transfers refer to actual deliveries of major conventional weapons. To permit comparison between the data on such deliveries of different weapons and identification of general trends, SIPRI uses a trend-indicator value. The SIPRI values are therefore only an indicator of the volume of international arms transfers and not of the actual financial values of such transfers."

As a comment on these statistics, SIPRI's data are founded on open sources which would tend to overestimate Western deliveries. On the other hand some shipments from the West were allegedly shipped through minor countries which might balance these figures.

Arms suppliers to Iraq

The table shows the majority of conventional (non-WMD) arms imported by Iraq during the 1970s, when the regime was building up the armies which were to attack Iran in 1980, were supplied by the Soviet Union and its satellites, principally Czechoslovakia. The only substantial western arms supplier to Iraq was France, which continued to be a major supplier until 1990, when Iraq invaded Kuwait and all legal arms transfers to Iraq ended. For the album, see Weapons of Mass Destruction (album). ... Year 1980 (MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1980 Gregorian calendar). ... MCMXC redirects here; for the Enigma album, see MCMXC a. ...

The United States did not supply any arms to Iraq until 1982, when Iran's growing military success alarmed American policymakers. It then did so every year until 1988. Although most other countries never hesitated to sell military hardware directly to Saddam Hussein's regime, the United States, equally keen to protect its interests in the region, adopted a more subtle approach. Howard Teicher served on the National Security Council as director of Political-Military Affairs. According to his 1995 affidavit and other interviews with former Regan and Bush administration officials, the Central Intelligence Agency secretly directed armaments and high-tech components to Iraq through false fronts and friendly third parties such as Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Kuwait, and they quietly encouraged rogue arms dealers and other Private military companies to do the same:-1... 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Year 1995 (MCMXCV) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display full 1995 Gregorian calendar). ... The CIA Seal The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is an American intelligence agency, responsible for obtaining and analyzing information about foreign governments, corporations, and individuals, and reporting such information to the various branches of the U.S. Government. ... A Private Military Company (PMC) is a for-profit enterprise, sometimes a corporation or a limited liability partnership, which provides specialised services and expertise related to military and similar activities. ...

"The CIA, including both CIA Director Casey and Deputy Director Gates, knew of, approved of, and assisted in the sale of non-U.S. origin military weapons, ammunition and vehicles to Iraq. My notes, memoranda and other documents in my NSC files show or tend to show that the CIA knew of, approved of, and assisted in the sale of non-U.S. origin military weapons, munitions and vehicles to Iraq."

The full extent of these hidden transfers is not yet known. Teicher's files on the subject are held securely at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and many other Reagan era documents that could help shine new light on the subject remain classified. The inner courtyard of the library. ...

In 1996 the Scott Report in the UK investigated arms sales to Iraq in the 1980s by Matrix Churchill in what became known as the Arms-to-Iraq scandal. 1996 (MCMXCVI) was a leap year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year for the Eradication of Poverty. ... The Scott Report was a judicial inquiry commissioned in 1992 after reports of arms sales in the 1980s to Iraq by British companies surfaced. ... The Arms-to-Iraq affair concerned the uncovering of the government-endorsed sale of arms by British companies to Saddam Husseins Iraq. ... The Arms-to-Iraq affair concerned the uncovering of the government-endorsed sale of arms by British companies to Saddam Husseins Iraq. ...

Political implications

The Soviet Union and her satellites were the main suppliers of arms to Iraq following the 1972 signing of the Soviet-Iraqi Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation. France was another important supplier of weapons to Iraq during the 1970s. The United States, the world's leading arms exporter, did not have normal relations with Iraq from 1967 (due to the Six-Day War) until 1984. The 1970s decade refers to the years from 1970 to 1979. ... 1967 (MCMLXVII) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar (the link is to a full 1967 calendar). ... Combatants Israel Egypt Syria Jordan Iraq Saudi Arabia Commanders Yitzhak Rabin, Moshe Dayan, Uzi Narkiss, Israel Tal, Mordechai Hod, Ariel Sharon Abdel Hakim Amer, Abdul Munim Riad, Zaid ibn Shaker, Hafez al-Assad Strength 264,000 (incl. ... Year 1984 (MCMLXXXIV) was a leap year starting on Sunday (link displays the 1984 Gregorian calendar). ...

Soviet-Iraqi relations suffered strains in the late 1970s. When Iraq invaded Iran in 1980, the Soviet Union cut off weapons sales to Iraq and did not resume them until 1982. During the war, the People's Republic of China became a major new source of weapons for Iraq, with increasing sales from France, the United Kingdom, and Egypt. At this point the United States also began assisting Iraq through its CIA maintained Bear Spares military aid program, which arranged for Soviet-made spare parts and ammunition to be sent to Baghdad. "If the Bear Spares were manufactured outside the United States, then the United States could arrange for the provision of these weapons to a third country without direct involvement," Howard Teacher recalled. Combatants  Iran Iraq Commanders Ruhollah Khomeini, Abolhassan Banisadr, Ali Shamkhani, Mostafa Chamran† Saddam Hussein, Ali Hassan al-Majid Strength - 305,000 soldiers, - 500,000 Passdaran and Basij militia, - 900 tanks, - 1,000 armored vehicles, - 3,000 artillery pieces, - 65 aircraft, - 750 helicopters[1] - 190,000 soldiers, - 5,000 tanks, - 4... Baghdad (Arabic: ) is the capital of Iraq and of Baghdad Governorate. ...

After the fall of the Soviet Union and of the communist regimes in its former satellites, and with the alienation of many western and Arab countries from Iraq following the invasion of Kuwait, Iraq became increasingly isolated internationally during the early 1990s. As years of inspection regimes and the aggressive enforcement of established no fly zones wore on, Iraq began to rely on the diplomatic support of France, Russia, and China.

During the controversy over the April 2003 invasion of Iraq by the United States and its allies, the issue of US arms exports to Iraq became important politically; opponents of military action frequently mentioned US support for Iraq during the Iraq-Iran War (despite its official neutrality) as an argument that US motivations for invading Iraq were not humanitarian, whereas supporters were quick to recall French, Soviet (and by extension, Russian), Chinese, as well as German sales of conventional and unconventional weapons to the regime. 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The subject of this article is the 2003 invasion of Iraq. ... Iranian troops in the northern front. ...

Sources and References

Despite the fact that the U.S. overtly supplied a negligible amount of arms to Iraq during this period, they have ignited considerable controversy due to later U.S. hostility to the Saddam regime:

  • Kenneth R. Timmerman, The Death Lobby: How the West Armed Iraq. New York, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1991.
  • Friedman Alan, Spider's Web: The Secret History of how the White House Illegally Armed Iraq. New York, Bantam Books, 1993.
  • Jentleson Bruce, With friends like these: Reagan, Bush, and Saddam, 1982-1990. New York, W. W. Norton, 1994.
  • Phythian Mark, Arming Iraq: How the U.S. and Britain Secretly Built Saddam's War Machine. Boston, Northeastern University Press, 1997.

See also

  • Arms trade
  • British Arms-to-Iraq affair
  • The Riegle Report
  • U.S. support for Iraq during the Iran-Iraq war
  • Iraq-gate (Gulf War)

The arms industry is a massive global industry. ... The Arms-to-Iraq affair concerned the uncovering of the government-endorsed sale of arms by British companies to Saddam Husseins Iraq. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: Riegle Report On February 9th, 1994, Donald W. Riegle, Jr. ... Donald Rumsfeld meeting Saddām on 19 December – 20 December 1983. ... Iraq-gate (Iraq gate) was a series of scandals involving the US and British support for Saddam Hussein up until the first Gulf War. ...

External links

  • Arms transfers to Iraq, 1970-2004 from SIPRI.
  • Soviet Union country guide
  • A timeline of U.S. support for Saddam against Iran.
  • Statement by former NSC official Howard Teicher dated 1/31/95, to the U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida. Plain text version
  • Statement of Henry B. Gonzalez, Chairman, House Committee on Banking, Finance, and Urban Affairs on Iraq-gate
  • U.S. Senate Riegle Report - details U.S. shipments of bioweapons material to Iraq
  • University of Sussex report
  • A Global Policy Forum Report
  • A full list of those companies and their involvements in Iraq[1] [2].



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