Public planning of major war crimes
John M Cox
coxj at email.unc.edu
Sun Jan 26 09:54:07 MST 2003
(Unless I'm mistaken, the targetting of electrical and water supplies of
urban centers, among other things described in this article, constitute
war crimes -- unless you happen to be immune from prosecution, that is):
Iraq Faces Massive U.S. Missile Barrage
WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2003
CBS) They're calling it "A-Day," A as in airstrikes
so devastating they would leave Saddam's soldiers
unable or unwilling to fight.
If the Pentagon sticks to its current war plan, one
day in March (?) the Air Force and Navy will launch
between 300 and 400 cruise missiles at targets in
Iraq. As CBS News Correspondent David Martin reports,
this is more than number that were launched during the
entire 40 days of the first Gulf War.
On the second day, the plan calls for launching
another 300 to 400 cruise missiles.
"There will not be a safe place in Baghdad," said one
Pentagon official who has been briefed on the plan.
"The sheer size of this has never been seen before,
never been contemplated before," the official said.
The battle plan is based on a concept developed at
the National Defense University. It's called "Shock
and Awe" and it focuses on the psychological
destruction of the enemy's will to fight rather than
the physical destruction of his military forces.
"We want them to quit. We want them not to fight,"
says Harlan Ullman, one of the authors of the Shock
and Awe concept which relies on large numbers of
precision guided weapons.
"So that you have this simultaneous effect, rather
like the nuclear weapons at Hiroshima, not taking days
or weeks but in minutes," says Ullman.
In the first Gulf War, 10 percent of the weapons were precision guided. In
this war 80 percent will be precision guided.
The Air Force has stockpiled 6,000 of these guidance
kits in the Persian Gulf to convert ordinary dumb
bombs into satellite-guided bombs, a weapon that
didn't exist in the first war.
"You're sitting in Baghdad and all of a sudden you're
the general and 30 of your division headquarters have
been wiped out. You also take the city down. By that I
mean you get rid of their power, water. In 2,3,4,5
days they are physically, emotionally and
psychologically exhausted," Ullman tells Martin.
Last time, an armored armada swept into Kuwait and
destroyed Saddam's elite republican guard divisions in
the largest tank battle since the World War II. This
time, the target is not the Iraqi army but the Iraqi leadership, and the
battle plan is designed to bypass Iraqi divisions whenever possible.
If Shock and Awe works, there won't be a ground war.
Not everybody in the Bush Administration thinks Shock
and Awe will work. One senior official called it a
bunch of bull, but confirmed it is the concept on
which the war plan is based.
Last year, in Operation Anaconda in Afghanistan, the
U.S. was badly surprised by the willingness of al
Qaeda to fight to the death. If the Iraqis fight, the
U.S. would have to throw in reinforcements and win the
old fashioned way by crushing the republican guards,
and that would mean more casualties on both sides.
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