News

State Dept on ILA Drawdown

Iraq News, MONDAY, OCTOBER 18, 1999

By Laurie Mylroie

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I. STATE DEP'T LETTER TO SEN. JESSE HELMS, OCT 14
II. STATE DEP'T MEMORANDUM ON ILA DRAWDOWN, OCT 14

I. STATE DEP'T LETTER TO SEN. JESSE HELMS
United States Department of State
Washington, D.C. 20520

October 14, 1999

Dear Mr. Chairman:

Pursuant to Section 4 (d) of the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998 (P. L. 105 
– 338) (“the Act”), I wish to inform you that the President intends to 
exercise his authority under section (4 “a” 2) of that Act to direct the 
drawdown of up to $5 million of defense articles from the stocks of the 
Department of Defense, and military education and training, to provide 
military assistance to the Iraqi National Congress.

As described in the attached Memorandum of Justification, this initial 
drawdown will consist of up to $3 million in military education and 
training and up to $2 million in non-lethal defense articles and 
services including items needed by the INC to establish its 
organizational headquarters and communications base in London.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if we can be of further assistance 
on this or any other mater.

Sincerely,
Barbara Larkin
Assistant Secretary
Legislative Affairs

The Honorable
Jesse Helms, Chairman,
Committee on Foreign Relations,
United States Senate.

II. STATE DEP'T MEMORANDUM ON ILA DRAWDOWN
			  MEMORANDUM OF JUSTIFICATION 
		FOR A DRAWDOWN UNDER THE IRAQ LIBERATION ACT OF 1998
			TO SUPPORT THE IRAQI NATIONAL CONGRESS

   In November 1998, President Clinton announced that the United States 
would contain Saddam Hussein while seeking a new regime to govern in 
Baghdad.  The President committed the United States to support those 
Iraqis--inside and outside Iraq--who seek a new government and a better 
future for all the people of Iraq.  The Administration's policy rests on 
three pillars.  First, the U.S. will contain Saddam Hussein as long as 
he remains in power in order to reduce the threat he poses both to 
Iraq's neighbors and to the Iraqi people.  Second, the U.S. will seek to 
alleviate the humanitarian cost to the Iraqi people of his refusal to 
comply with UNSC resolutions.  Finally, the U.S. will work with forces 
inside and outside Iraq, as well as Iraq's neighbors to change the 
regime in Iraq and help its new government rejoin the community of 
nations.
   Since then, the Administration has increased contacts with elements 
of the Iraqi opposition to determine what role these groups who share 
our goals of effecting regime change in Baghdad could play.  An adjunct 
objective has been to identify groups that could assist in the 
transition of post-Saddam Iraq toward a democratic form of government.
   In accordance with the Iraq Liberation act, the President, in 
Presidential Determination No. 99-13, dated February 4, 1999, determined 
that the Iraqi National Congress meets the criteria set forth in section 
5 (c) of the Act and designated it as one of the Iraqi democratic 
opposition organizations eligible to receive select U.S. assistance 
under the Act.
   In May 1999, members of the INC met in Washington to begin outlining 
logistical and training requirements.  We believe it important to 
support the INC in setting up offices to provide an administrative base 
in London, UK, and possibly elsewhere.  We also seek to provide U.S. 
military training courses such as logistics and broadcasting, and other 
related subjects, which will be of value in preparing for Iraq's 
democratic transition to a post-Saddam democratic regime.  Training 
could be available as early as November 1999.  These articles and 
services will assist the INC in, among other things, establishing a 
viable headquarters to better coordinate opposition efforts and to begin 
training for a democratic transition in Iraq.