U.S. Policy Towards Iraq
Mar 20, 1991
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The committee heard testimony in an “informal discussion” from April Glaspie, the U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, on the U.S.' policy concerning Iraq before the Aug. 2, 1990 Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. Her testimony .. Read More
The committee heard testimony in an “informal discussion” from April Glaspie, the U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, on the U.S.' policy concerning Iraq before the Aug. 2, 1990 Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. Her testimony was her first public appearance since the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. The hearing was called an “informal discussion” because of the objection of one of the committee members, which prevented the official title of “hearing” from being applied to the committee session. Ms. Glaspie is considered by some to be the Bush Administration’s “scapegoat” for the administration’s appeasement policy towards Kuwait before the Aug. 2 invasion. During a July 25, 1990 meeting between Ms. Glaspie and Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, transcripts of which have been released by Iraq, Ms. Glaspie said she warned Saddam Hussein orally that the U.S. would defend its vital interests in the Persian Gulf, but her remarks were not reported in the Iraqi transcript. Iraq claims Ms. Glaspie told the Iraqi leader that the U.S. was not concerned about Iraq’s possible annexation of Kuwait. A U.S. transcript of the meeting has not been released. Ms. Glaspie said that Saddam Hussein was warned repeatedly by her that the U.S. would react against an Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, but the Iraqi leader was too “stupid” to read the U.S.' signals. Several committee members questioned her account of the meeting, saying the State Department called the Iraqi transcript “essentially accurate.” She refused to turn over a cable she sent the State Department on July 25 about the meeting, claiming diplomatic confidentiality. She also said the State Department kept her under wraps for so long because it was busy countering the Iraqi aggression in Kuwait.