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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Sept. 27, 2005 / 23 Elul, 5765

Thinking outside the Saddam box

By Jonathan Gurwitz


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | "Saddam Hussein needs to remain in his box — but we don't need a war to keep him there."

So wrote John J. Mearsheimer, professor of political science at the University of Chicago, and Stephen M. Walt, academic dean of Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, on the op-ed pages of the New York Times in the run-up to the Iraq war in early 2003.

It was a popular refrain by anti-war critics. The arms inspections and economic sanctions established by the U.N. Security Council were working, they said. The threat posed by Saddam to the world, his neighbors and his own citizens was diminishing. And the international community could sustain the inspections and sanctions indefinitely.

"We should perpetuate this state of affairs by maintaining vigilant containment," Mearsheimer and Walt wrote, "a policy the rest of the world regards as preferable and effective."

If only it were so.

Saddam's weapons of mass destruction have proven to be illusory. The uniform belief that he possessed proscribed weapons, it should be noted, derived in large part from his failure even remotely to live up to the inspection and verification process created by the U.N. Security Council. In 2003, even war critics such as Mearsheimer and Walt considered Iraqi WMDs to be an accepted fact, a nuisance to be managed rather than destroyed in battle.

Now that the committee investigating the U.N. oil-for-food scandal has released its fourth interim report, we know the idea of keeping Saddam in a box was just as mistaken as his supposed possession of stockpiles of chemical, biological or nuclear weapons.

The U.N. investigation, led by former U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker and empowered by Secretary-General Kofi Annan, conclusively demonstrates how the Baathist regime was gaming the U.N. system — to the financial benefit of some U.N. administrators and members and with the knowledge of many others.

Begin with the amount Saddam was able to skim from the program and divert for largely military purposes: $12 billion.

Of that, $226 million came in the form of surcharges. The Iraqi government sold oil to a preferred group of traders at below-market prices. The traders pocketed a handsome profit but had to share the spoils in the form of a kickback to Baghdad.

Then $1.6 billion came on the other side of the oil-for-food ledger in the form of kickbacks from companies selected to supply food, medicine and other humanitarian aid inside Iraq.

Saddam pocketed another $10.2 billion in illicit income by smuggling oil outside the oil-for-food program with the acquiescence of U.N. administrators and the complicity of Security Council members.

And who was it that was profiting from lucrative contracts to sell Iraqi oil and provide humanitarian aid? "Companies from Russia, France and China, all permanent members of the Security Council that were more sympathetic to Iraq's wish for an end to sanctions than the United States," the report notes, "were accorded highly favored access to Iraq's business under the program."

Russian companies garnered $19.3 billion in oil purchases, nearly one-third of all sales under the program and more than any other country. France came in second with $4.4 billion in oil purchases. Companies from the same countries conspicuously racked up an inordinate share of the humanitarian aid contracts as well.

In fact, as the Volcker report spells out, the entire oil-for-food program was a $100 billion profit-making enterprise. One-tenth of it ended up in Saddam's coffers, perpetuating his homicidal regime and strengthening his military. The rest went to buy influence in foreign capitals and at the United Nations to bring sanctions and inspections to an end and let Saddam out of his box.

In 2003, sanctions against Iraq were not working, the Baathist regime was getting stronger, not weaker, and the threat it posed was growing, not diminishing.

We now know the errors and costs of going to war in 2003. We will never know the errors and costs if we had allowed Saddam to buy his way out of a failing and corrupt policy of containment.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Jonathan Gurwitz, a columnist for the San Antonio Express-News, is a co-founder and twice served as Director General of the Future Leaders of the Alliance program at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. In 1986 he was placed on the Foreign Service Register of the U.S. State Department.Comment by clicking here.

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