The Persian Gulf Deception Part I

Date:         Thu, 02 Mar 95 00:04:26 EST

Subject:      6.  The Persian Gulf Deception (fwd)

     (Feel free to download this document for reading and distribution.)

                       ***THE PERSIAN GULF DECEPTION***

                                 By J. Adams
                              -Outline of Paper-

         A.  Introduction

         B.  Inconsistencies and Contradictions

         C.  The Deception

         D.  Confirmation

         E.  The Strategy

         F.  Conclusion

           *          *          *          *          *          *

                      "The great masses of the people...

      will more easily fall victims to a great lie than to a small one."

                               (Adolph Hitler)

         "We have no right ever to forget that psychological warfare

                  is a struggle for winning people's minds."

                             (Mikhail Gorbachev)

           *          *          *          *          *          *

                          THE PERSIAN GULF DECEPTION


          "I have a great feeling of a great victory.  Anyone who dares

       even imply that we did not achieve  a  great  victory  obviously

       doesn't know what the hell he's talking about." (1)

                     {Retired General Norman Schwarzkopf}

             (Gulf War Commander in Chief, U.S. Central Command)

     Since Gorbachev came to power in  the  Soviet  Union  there  have  been

 persistent  and  exceptional  historical contradictions in Soviet behavior.

 The consequence of this contradictory behavior has been the breakup of  the

 Soviet Union and the seeming demise of the 'communist' threat.

     Although  on the surface the apparent,  dramatic turn around in Kremlin

 thinking and the consequent collapse of  Soviet  communism  may  seem  like

 positive  developments  for  the West,  there is reason to believe they may

 actually not be.  Secular trends indicate there is a possibility  that  the

 Soviets have undermined their own political and economic power as part of a

 grand  deception.  There  is  reason  to  believe  that Russia is currently

 misleading the world for the purpose  of  global  military  domination.  An

 unprecedented  campaign of large-scale deceptions may be underway which has

 totally misled the West such that the East can now  successfully  launch  a

 surprise third world war. (2)

      The crisis in the Persian Gulf may have been a strategic deception

                            engineered by Moscow.

     For  America  and the West,  the Gulf Crisis had a sensational outcome.

 First off,  through the Gulf War the threat of Saddam Hussein was seemingly

 checked  and  Western interests in the Middle East were secured.  Secondly,

 the U.S.-led Coalition victory in the Gulf War  helped  the  United  States

 overcome  its  disgrace  in  Vietnam  and  reinstated  its  position as the

 dominant world hegemon.  Lastly, the positive resolution of the Gulf Crisis

 marked the beginning of  a  'New  World  Order'  in  which  the  threat  of

 militaristic  totalitarianism  appears  to  be dead and the superpowers are

 cooperating toward international peace and security.

     The problem with the Gulf Crisis and its positive outcome  is  that  it

 all  may have been literally too good to be true.  Something which the West

 seemed to conveniently overlook throughout the Crisis  was  that  Iraq  had

 been  a close ally of the Soviet Union for decades prior to the Invasion of

 Kuwait.  Consequently,  the humiliating defeat of Saddam Hussein's Iraq  in

 the Gulf War,  like the modern defeat of Soviet communism,  may have been a

 deception- an inherently contradictory lie.  There  is  reason  to  believe

 that  Saddam intentionally provoked the Gulf War with the sole intention of

 handing the West a 'great victory'.  He would have done this in cooperation

 with Moscow as an important part of an overall strategy to mislead America,

 its Western allies,  and the world  as  a  whole,  so  that  the  East  can

 successfully  launch  a  surprise attack against the West.  In other words,

 when it comes right down to it,  the  Gulf  Crisis  and  subsequent  Allied

 victory over Iraq may have in actuality been nothing but a seductive lie.

     In  the  following pages I will thoroughly examine how the Persian Gulf

 Crisis may have been a deception.  There will be four major parts.  In part

 I, numerous inconsistencies and contradictions associated with the behavior

 of Iraq and the Soviets throughout the  Gulf  Crisis  will  be  brought  to

 light.  In  the  second  part,  a  circumstantial  case will be built for a

 Persian  Gulf  deception  based  upon  the  implications   of   the   given

 inconsistencies  and  contradictions.   This  case  will  be  confirmed  by

 directly incriminating evidence in part III.  In the final  part,  possible

 strategic aims of a Persian Gulf deception will be discussed.

                -Part I:  Inconsistencies and Contradictions-


     Iraq's   Invasion   of  Kuwait  was  inconsistent-  it  was  a  blatant

 provocation for war with the West that went against Iraq's best interest.

     Going into the Gulf Crisis Iraq had become a major military threat, and

 potential target, for the West.  During the 1980's, Saddam Hussein built-up

 one of the largest militaries  in  the  world.  By  1990,  he  commanded  a

 million-man  army equipped with a vast arsenal of modern weaponry including

 over 4500 tanks,  almost 5000 artillery pieces,  and upwards of 800  combat

 aircraft  (3).  Saddam  also  controlled hundreds of anti-ship missiles and

 surface-to-surface ballistic missiles,  as well as a stockpile of  chemical

 and  possibly  biolological munitions.  During the 1980's Iraq developed an

 extensive  military  infrastructure  involving  a  comprehensive   command,

 control, communications, and intelligence (Cµ3I) network.  By the summer of

 1990,   throughout  Iraq  were  radar  stations,  anti-aircraft  artillery,

 surface-to-air missile  batteries,  and  weapons  production  plants  which

 included   facilities   for  the  research  and  development  of  chemical,

 biological, and nuclear weapons. (4)

     As Iraqi military power grew,  the West became  increasingly  concerned

 about  its  expanding regional influence.  In early May of 1990- just prior

 to the Gulf Crisis- 'The New Republic' warned:

          "The  prospect of Saddam Hussein as top man in the Arab world

       and dominant power in the Persian Gulf is not one that civilized

       people should welcome.  This man is a  ruthless  killer  with  a

       deep paranoia about the West and grandiose ambitions to be a new

       Nasser  and  to  re-create  the  glories  that  were Babylon and

       Mesopotamia." (5)

     All in all,  going into the Invasion of Kuwait,  the West saw Iraq as a

 dangerous military threat and destabilizing force in the richest oil region

 of  the  world.  Saddam's growing military power,  coupled with his staunch

 anti-Israeli and anti-Western mindset, was becoming a major concern for the

 West.  Iraq could someday unify the Arab world such that the West would  be

 held  hostage  by  its  oil dependency.  Even worse,  Iraq could eventually

 unleash a major regional war involving weapons of  mass  destruction  which

 could  result  in  the destruction of Israel.  By 1990,  Saddam Hussein had

 come to embody many of "the serious security problems of the post-cold  war

 era:  aggression,  terrorism, virulant tribalism, and missile, nuclear, and

 chemical weapons proliferation" (6).

     In the weeks and months before Iraq's Invasion of  Kuwait,  Saddam  was

 putting  out  some  not-so-subtle  hints  as to his belligerent intentions,

 giving the West an opportunity to consider  the  possibility  of  a  future

 confrontation.  In a speech made on April 3rd,  1990,  Saddam threatened to

 "make fire eat up half of Israel",  a comment which drew widespread Western

 consternation  (7).  In  May,  U.S.  officials  confirmed press rumors that

 Saddam told Kuwait:  "Iraqi security may  require  him  to  occupy  Kuwaiti

 territory  in  the  future" (8).  Such bellicose remarks likely led Western

 leaders to consider possible responses should Iraq become aggressive in the


     As Iraq began to blatantly threaten Kuwait in late July  of  1990,  the

 United  States  made  it clear that it would respond forcefully if need be.

 The prevailing sentiment of America's leaders at that time was reflected by

 Republican Senator Alfonse D'Amato who denounced Saddam as:  "...a butcher,

 a  killer,  a bully.  Some day we're going to have to stand up to him.  Why

 not now?" (9).  The State Department announced that the United States would

 "remain strongly committed to  supporting  the  individual  and  collective

 self-defence  of our friends in the Gulf,  with whom we have deep and long-

 standing ties" (10).  To underscore America's willingness to  use  military

 force  against  Iraq  should  events  warrant  such  action,  a joint naval

 exercise with the United Arab Emirates was hastily arranged  and  initiated

 in the northern Gulf (11).

     Apparently  unintimidated by American posturing,  on August 2nd,  1990,

 Saddam proved good on his word and Iraq invaded Kuwait.  The West  received

 the  opportunity it needed to do something decisive about the growing Iraqi

 threat.  Almost immediately, the United States and its Western Allies began

 preparing for a  war  against  Iraq.  Saddam's  military  empire  could  be

 forcefully  checked  before Iraqi regional influence grew too far or before

 Iraq's military might  became  too  strong-  eventually  including  nuclear


     Saddam's  provocation  was  ideal  for  a  decisive  Western   military

 response.  As  the 1991-92 'American Defense Annual' later put it:  "Saddam

 Hussein...  proved to be a near perfect villian,  and the coalition aligned

 against  him  had  a  compelling  'casus belli'" (12).  A ruthless military

 dictator,  infamous for gassing his own  people,  blitzkrieged  the  small,

 peaceful  nation  of  Kuwait  in  blatant  violation  of international law.

 What's more,  Saddam's Invasion resulted in Iraq's control of over a  third

 of  the  world's available oil reserves and "put his forces within striking

 distance of one of the world's most critical resources,  Saudi Arabia's oil

 fields,  making it necessary for the United States and other nations to act

 to counter him,  instead of just issuing protest  statements"  (13).  As  a

 whole,  through the Kuwaiti Invasion,  Saddam had come to threaten half the

 world's oil, a situation wholly intolerable to the oil-dependent West.

     Between the Invasion and the beginning of the Gulf War,  Iraq continued

 to behave in a seemingly irrational manner that was inconsistent  with  its

 own interests but favorable to Western interests.

     In the wake of Saddam's overrun of Kuwait, international pressure,  led

 by  the  West,  began  to  build  on  Iraq to withdraw.  Immediately,  U.N.

 Resolution 660 was ratified which called for the  unconditional  withdrawal

 of Iraq from Kuwait (14).  Within days, U.S. military forces began flooding

 into Saudi Arabia.  With Saddam remaining intransigent,  the United Nations

 decided to impose international economic sanctions against  Iraq.  As  Iraq

 failed to respond, military forces from across the globe began flowing into

 the Gulf along side the growing American build-up.  On November 29th,  with

 a sizable Coalition force already in place,  the U.N.  okayed a  resolution

 for  the  forceful  removal of Iraq from Kuwait by a U.S.-led international

 Coalition should Saddam's forces not  unilaterally  leave  by  January  15,

 1991. (15)

     Saddam's  intransigence  as  international pressure began to build made

 little sense.  It  was  apparent,  given  the  scale  of  the  American-led

 military build-up in Saudi Arabia,  that,  beyond freeing Kuwait,  the West

 was preparing to use the Invasion of Kuwait as an excuse to destroy  Iraq's

 military  potential  and,  in  turn,  the  threat  Saddam  posed to Western

 interests in the Middle East.  Any sort  of  compromise  or  moderation  on

 Saddam's  part  could  have  easily  undone  Western  attempts  to organize

 international support for a war and, in turn, resulted in substantial Iraqi

 gains.  In John Bulloch's and Harvey Morris' 'Saddam's War',  it is pointed

 out that:

          "Had   he  (Saddam)  contented  himself  with  occupying  the

       disputed islands of Bubiyan and Warbah and that  sector  of  the

       Rumeileh  oilfield  which he claimed as his own,  it is unlikely

       the United Nations would have  gone  beyond  the  imposition  of

       unenforceable  sanctions,  or  that the United States would have

       dispatched a single  soldier  to  the  region...  Had  a  puppet

       government  been  left  in  charge  of  a  nominally independent

       Kuwait,  it would eventually have received some recognition,  at

       least from the Arab world." (16)

     Instead of  moderation,  however,  Saddam  remained  almost  completely

 intransigent  and  belligerent toward the West.  He persistently made clear

 his unwillingness to be persuaded  by  Western  intimidation.  He  declared

 Kuwait  to  have always been a part of Iraq and let the world know that all

 of Iraqi  sovereignty-  including  Kuwait-  would  be  militarily  defended

 against any hostile actions.  Furthermore,  Saddam called on moslems around

 the world to rise up and launch a holy war,  or  'jihad',  against  Western

 imperialism. (17)

     Saddam  sometimes,  and  usually  at the wrong times,  failed to behave

 according to the belligerent image he painted of himself.

     Iraqi forces never preempted the build-up of the American-led Coalition

 in Saudi Arabia.  Saddam conveniently stood back as nations from  all  over

 the  world,  particularly  in  the  West,  mobilized and imported a massive

 military force.  Yet,  attacking while the  Coalition  was  incomplete  and

 disorganized  may  have  undermined the Coalition's ability to successfully

 wage a war.  Unfortunately,  as is pointed out  in  the  1991-92  'American

 Defense  Annual':  "It  seems  unlikely that future enemies will graciously

 grant U.S. forces five months to prepare for battle" (18).

     Even more inconsistent than failing to preempt was Saddam's release  of

 Western  hostages.  There can be little doubt that:  "One act of great good

 fortune was Saddam Hussein's decision to release his hostages,  those human

 shields  whose continued presence in Iraq would have vastly complicated the

 air war" (19).  Specifically,  Saddam made hostages out of the thousands of

 Western  civilians  (including  over 3000 Americans) who had been living in

 Kuwait or Iraq when the Gulf Crisis broke out.  He threatened to  use  them

 as  'human  shields' by placing them in strategic targets in order to deter

 any approaching Coalition attack.  These hostages became  one  of  Saddam's

 only  major  trump  cards  against  a  U.S.-led  attack.  It was apparent a

 Coalition bombing campaign that would cost thousands  of  innocent  Western

 lives would have exceptionally high political costs for our leaders.  In an

 act  of  goodwill  totally  uncharacteristic  of  the 'Butcher of Baghdad',

 however,  Saddam released the hostages.  The only major concession he  made

 before  the  Gulf War was profoundly self-contradictory in that it directly

 undermined his stated intention to inflict  as  much  damage  and  pain  as

 possible  on  the West.  In fact,  Saddam spared the lives of Westerners at

 the cost of Iraqi lives later lost in unhampered Coalition bombings.

     The deadline of January 15th eventually passed and  the  U.S.-Coalition

 attacked the very next day.  The Gulf War was underway as well as continued

 inconsistencies and contradictions.

     As  General  Powell  correctly  pointed  out  the  following  day,  the

 Coalition somehow 'caught Iraq off guard' and achieved tactical surprise in

 its post-deadline air-attack (20).  This, of course, is absurd.  Going into

 the Gulf War,  Iraq had one of the most experienced and hardened militaries

 in the world.  It had just completed an almost decade-long, modern war with

 Iran.  Furthermore,  Iraq  was  equipped  with  a sophisticated Soviet Cµ3I

 network.  To top it all off,  Iraq had several months  going  into  January

 15th to prepare its defenses and a military response should war come.  Yet,

 Saddam's  war-machine  was  somehow surprised by a *deadline*-attack.  Upon

 the initial wave of the air campaign there was little or no immediate Iraqi

 response:  no defensive black-out  of  Baghdad  (something  they  had  been

 rehearsing),  no  immediate retaliatory SCUD missile strikes,  and no Iraqi

 air- or ground-counteroffensive.  Fortunately for the  Coalition,  all  its

 planes  ran into was well-lit targets,  inept Iraqi air defenses,  and some

 sporadic dog-fights.  Tactical surprise allowed the  Coalition  to  swiftly

 disable Saddam's war-machine with minimum associated costs.

     During the air-campaign,  the only significant counterattack from  Iraq

 was   random   SCUD  missile  attacks  against  Israel  and  Saudi  Arabia.

 Fortunately, however, chemical weapons were never involved.  Of course, why

 weren't they?  It was not that Saddam lacked such weapons for in the  War's

 aftermath  U.N.  inspectors  have found dozens of Al-Hussein chemical SCUDs

 which survived Coalition bombings (21).  Saddam decided not to use chemical

 SCUDs even though such restraint  contradicted  both  the  threats  he  was

 making and the image he was conveying prior to and during the Gulf War.  If

 Saddam  really  wished  to spread the conflict and set-off a holy war as he

 persistently claimed he would,  hitting Israel with  chemical  SCUDs  would

 have  been an ideal provocation.  It is doubtful that Saddam feared Israeli

 retaliation given that  Iraq  was  already  stomaching  over  two  thousand

 Coalition sorties a day and Israeli involvement was the intended goal.  All

 in  all,  it  makes  little  sense that Saddam failed to use chemical SCUDs

 during the Gulf War against Israel or any of  Iraq's  enemies,  whereas  he

 gassed his own people only a couple of years before. (22)

     In  late  February,  the  Coalition ground-offensive got underway,  but

 again no chemical weapons were involved.  Apparently, Saddam disallowed the

 use of any of  the  tens-of-thousands  of  chemical  artillery  shells  and

 chemical  mines  in  the  Iraqi arsenal (23).  This is surprising given how

 these weapons were employed with great success  during  the  Iran-Iraq  War

 (24).  The  fact that chemical munitions were not used by the Iraqis is but

 another inconsistency on the part of Saddam which was to the benefit of the

 U.S. and the Coalition forces.

     By March,  Kuwait was repatriated and Saddam had managed  to  suffer  a

 defeat  that  seemed  beyond human reasoning.  With all said and done,  the

 U.S.-Coalition had succeeded in a total  military  'rout'  of  Iraq's  war-

 hardened,  well-equipped,  million-man army and hardly got scratched in the

 process.  After six-weeks of Allied aerial bombardment involving upwards of

 100,000 sorties and 141,000 tons of bombs,  Saddam's vast  war-machine  was

 left  decimated at the cost of only a few dozen Coalition planes (25).  Any

 of Saddam's forces in Kuwait that escaped destruction during the  Coalition

 air-campaign  proceeded  to be encircled and destroyed in a 100-hour Allied

 ground offensive.  When the War was over,  more than 100,000 Iraqi soldiers

 had  been killed,  300,000 were injured,  and around 150,000 had been taken

 prisoner (26).  In causing this immense massacre,  the Allies suffered only

 468  casualties:  149  dead,  81  missing-in-action,  and 238 wounded (27).

 Through the Gulf War Saddam lost some 4000 tanks,  2000  artillery  pieces,

 2000  armored personnel carriers (APCs),  100 aircraft,  and 80 ships (28).

 Furthermore,  Iraq's infrastructure suffered what the U.N.  later described

 as  'near-apocalyptic'  damage (29).  The Allies,  on the other hand,  lost

 only 4 tanks,  1 artillery piece,  9 APCs,  44 aircraft,  and 2 ships (30).

 All  in  all,  Saddam's  defeat at the hands of the West was so drastic and

 humiliating as to be utterly nonsensical.

     With the Gulf War over, the West had reason to breathe a sigh of relief

 at home.  Fortunately,  there had  been  no  major  anti-Western  terrorist

 attacks associated with the Crisis.  Of course, why weren't there?  The CIA

 "picked  up  all  the  tell-tale  signs  of Iraq's ability to wage chemical

 warfare and launch terrorist attacks around the Middle East  and  Europe...

 Intelligence analysts are still scratching their heads, wondering why these

 capabilities  were  not used (31)".  In other words,  Saddam refrained from

 launching terrorist attacks just as he failed to wage chemical attacks even

 though he was fully capable of and supposedly intending to do  both.  Thus,

 since there was no terrorism, Saddam acted in a contradictory manner which,

 once again, was favorable to the West.

     In the wake of the Gulf War, one of the greatest inconsistencies of all

 concerning Saddam's behavior has come to light.  U.N. inspections following

 the Gulf War ceasefire have revealed that Iraq's program to develop nuclear

 weapons,  code-named  'Project  Babylon'  (32),  was  far  larger  and more

 successful than had ever been suspected in the West.  In fact,  it is today

 believed that Iraq may have been less than a year away from having at least

 a  few  crude  nuclear weapons when it invaded Kuwait (33).  Of course,  if

 Saddam was interested in taking on the West and fighting the "Mother of All

 Battles",  why did he make his challenge when he did?  Why didn't he wait a

 year  until  he had the Bomb?  Why did Saddam invade Kuwait and fight a war

 with the West before developing the ultimate means by which to fulfill  his

 grandiose ambitions?

                                -The Soviets-

     Throughout   the   Persian   Gulf   Crisis   the   Soviets  behaved  as

 inconsistently as Saddam's Iraq.

     For  the  Gulf  Crisis,   Soviet  foreign  policy  did  an  about-face.

 Throughout  most  of  the  United  Nation's  history,  Moscow  had tried to

 undermine any Western efforts to  bring  about  international  cooperation,

 particularly  if  such  cooperation was to somehow serve Western interests.

 Yet, for the Gulf Crisis,  this was not so.  For the first time since World

 War  II the Soviets cooperated with the West in organizing an international


     The effort they finally chose to support was blatantly  in  the  West's

 interest and against their own.

     The  oil-shock stemming from the Gulf Crisis was devastating to Western

 economic vitality.  The West desperately  needed  a  way  to  resecure  its

 supply of cheap oil from the Persian Gulf by freeing Kuwait and eliminating

 the  Iraqi  threat.  Without  the  okay  of  the  Soviets and international

 support this may never have been possible and the West's economy  may  very

 well have been plunged into depression.

     For the Soviets, on the other hand, higher oil-prices stemming from the

 Gulf  Crisis  was  a blessing.  At the time,  Soviet Russia was the world's

 largest producer and second largest exporter of oil.  Hence, the sharp rise

 in oil prices meant windfall profits of hard  foreign  currency-  something

 the Soviets greatly needed.  Given the price at which oil topped-out during

 the Crisis,  the Soviets could have hoped to increase  their  hard-currency

 earnings by nearly $40 billion a year. (34)

     Beyond  oil  interests,  Saddam  Hussein's Iraq was a valuable ally and

 military client which the Soviets should have wanted to keep.

     By 1990, the Soviets had a long-standing and deeply-vested relationship

 with Iraq.  In 1972,  Moscow and Baghdad signed a 'Treaty of Friendship and

 Cooperation'  (35).  Over the next two decades the Soviets poured thousands

 of  military  'advisers'  and  other  specialists  into  Iraq  who  trained

 Baghdad's  general  staff  and  planning  officers as well as organized its

 intelligence services (36).  Soviet involvement in Iraq became particularly

 deep after Saddam Hussein came to power in  1979.  Guided  by  a  Stalinist

 philosophy,  Saddam  wanted  to  model Iraq after the Soviet military state

 (37).  He affirmed his commitment to  Moscow  when  he  came  to  power  by

 signing  an  agreement  with  Soviet  Defense  Minister Ustinov on military

 cooperation and strategic consultation (38).  After making  the  agreement,

 the  Soviets  helped Saddam carry out a large-scale campaign to consolidate

 power within Iraq and become a  regional  military  superpower.  Reflecting

 Moscow's  involvement,  eight  military facilities were constructed in Iraq

 for Soviet use including both air bases and naval ports (39).  All in  all,

 by  the  Kuwaiti  Invasion,  the  Soviet Union had invested a great deal of

 time,  energy,  and resources in the construction of Saddam's  totalitarian

 regime and modern war-machine- an investment they likely meant to make good


     In  developing  its  massive  war-machine,  Iraq became an ideal Soviet

 military clientele  state.  During  the  1980's  Iraq  became  the  world's

 largest  importer  of  arms.  It  is  estimated  that between 1980 and 1990

 Saddam spent some $100 billion dollars on military equipment (that compares

 to just under $70 billion spent on arms by Britian  or  France  during  the

 same period) (40).  Since 90 percent of Iraq's military was bought from the

 Soviets,  it  should be apparent just how valuable a customer Saddam was to


     Since Iraq purchased most of its arms from the Soviets  on  credit,  it

 was  in  Moscow's  interest to maintain Saddam's regime and Iraq's economic

 vitality.  Going into  the  Gulf  Crisis,  Baghdad  owed  Moscow  some  $80

 billion.  For 1990 alone,  the Soviets were expecting to receive $2 billion

 from Iraq (41).  Given the seeming  economic  distress  in  Soviet  Russia,

 preserving Iraq's economic potential should have been important to them.

     In a nutshell, the Soviets should not have wanted to turn their back on

 Iraq  during the Gulf Crisis.  As 'Times' columnist A.M.  Rosenthal pointed

 out at the time, doing so meant that:

          "Moscow will lose its only remaining ally in the area.  Also:

       its best customer for weapons.  Also: the military and political

       prestige it invested in Saddam Hussein for so long." (42)

     The principal reason Moscow forged a close  relationship  with  Baghdad

 and  made  such  a  deep military commitment is because Iraq has tremendous

 geopolitical strategic value.  Iraq is at the heart of the Persian Gulf and

 the richest oil-region in the world.  Thus, it is a focal point not only of

 the Arab world,  but also of vital Western energy interests.  A foothold in

 Iraq  enhanced  Moscow's  influence  over  other  Arab nations and gave the

 Soviets access to the aquilles heel of the oil-dependent West.

     Because of Iraq's strategic value,  it was widely believed the  Soviets

 would never let the West attack and defeat Saddam Hussein.  Such a scenario

 entailed  a  shift in the regional balance of power that compromised Soviet

 interests and benefitted the West.  Just prior to the Gulf  War,  'Aviation

 Week and Space Technology' reported:

           "...the  destruction of Iraq's military,  if it came to that,

        would augment the strategic weight of Israel and Iran.  This  is

        not in Soviet interests." (43)

 At  the Hoover Institute,  a national defense think-tank,  experts believed

 that the Soviets would "do everything in  their  power  to  keep  that  man

(Saddam) in there... They do not want that part of the world dominated by