Iraq and the War of Sanctions: Conventional Threats and Weapons of Mass Destruction

By Anthony H. Cordesman | Go to book overview
Save to active project

Chapter 16

Iraqi Terrorism, Unconventional Warfare, and Weapons of Mass Destruction

Iraq does not have Iran’s history of making extensive use of terrorism, unconventional warfare, and proxies. At the same time, the success of UN sanctions and the efforts of UNSCOM and the IAEA may lead Iraq to change its approach to delivering weapons of mass destruction in the future. Iraq has the option of exploiting a wide range of unconventional delivery methods that are far less expensive, difficult, and detectable than most of the previous delivery systems, and may be able to use other radical nations or groups that either sympathize with Iraq or would strike against Iraq’s enemies for their own reasons. 1

Once again, there is no way to determine what Iraq does or does not plan, and the outcome of the war of sanctions. Iraq’s official attitude toward terrorism is the usual one of denial. Further, Iraq’s efforts may well be improvised and reactive—and Iraq may suddenly escalate the scale of its use of unconventional warfare/terrorism in reaction to a given contingency or the failure of its military forces. This makes any effort to characterize Iraq’s use of such delivery methods purely speculative—whether in terms of warning against such threats or denying their existence.

What is clear is that such attacks are technically feasible and could offer Iraq significant advantages in a wide range of scenarios, and that they apply equally to biological, chemical, and nuclear weapons. Table 16.1 illustrates this point. Many of the attacks postulated in this table may seem to borrow from bad spy novels and science fiction, but all of the scenarios are at least technically possible. These scenarios also illustrate the fact that Iraq does not need sophisticated military delivery systems, does not need highly lethal weapons of mass destruction, can use terrorism to pose existential threats, can use complex mixes of weapons of mass destruction, and can mix terrorism with elements of covert action and deniability.

-520-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Iraq and the War of Sanctions: Conventional Threats and Weapons of Mass Destruction
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 684

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?