David Kay Discusses Iraqi Weapons at MEI

Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, May 1997 | Go to article overview

David Kay Discusses Iraqi Weapons at MEI


David Kay Discusses Iraqi Weapons at MEI

The Middle East Institute in Washington, DC hosted David Kay for a Jan. 27 discussion entitled "Iraq's Weapons and the United Nations." Kay currently is a vice-president at Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), an international consulting firm headquartered in McLean, VA. He served as chief nuclear inspector in the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM) on Iraq, an international investigative body created in the aftermath of the Gulf war to dismantle Iraq's chemical, biological, missile and nuclear weapons programs.

Dr. Kay divided his talk between three broad topics: international views on Iraq's unconventional weapons capabilities before its 1990 invasion of Kuwait, information discovered during numerous inspections, and predictions for the future of UNSCOM.

Prior to and during the Gulf war, American estimates of Iraq's chemical and biological weapons development and stockpiles often were dismissed as propaganda by America's allies, Kay said. UNSCOM's later investigations, however, proved these estimates to be conservative. Most international agencies did not know or refused to believe the extent of Iraq's unconventional weapons programs prior to UNSCOM's intrusive inspections, which Kay attributed partly to "technological ignorance and cultural arrogance. …

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