Wednesday, July 23, 2003

<< don't beleive the U.S put the Baath party into power for common sense reasons
1. It didn't come out in the Church hearings, and a lot of strange stuff came out of the hearings >>
did the Church hearings mention the "Health Alteration Committee"?
your "common sence" reasons ignore the fact that the U.S. did not want Kassem in power.
Both Roger Morris and James Akins say the CIA was involved.

Roger Morris, a former State Department foreign service officer who was on the NSC staff during the Johnson and Nixon administrations, says the CIA had a hand in two coups in Iraq during the darkest days of the Cold War, including a 1968 putsch that set Saddam Hussein firmly on the path to power.

Morris says that in 1963, two years after the ill-fated U.S. attempt at overthrow in Cuba known as the Bay of Pigs, the CIA helped organize a bloody coup in Iraq that deposed the Soviet-leaning government of Gen. Abdel-Karim Kassem.

David Wise, a Washington-based author who has written extensively about Cold War espionage, says he is only aware of records showing that a CIA group known as the "Health Alteration Committee" tried to assassinate Kassem in 1960 by sending the Iraqi leader a poisoned monogrammed handkerchief.

"Clearly, they felt that Kassem was somebody who had to be eliminated," Wise says.

US diplomat James Akins served in the Baghdad Embassy at the time. Mr. Akins said, "I knew all the Ba'ath Party leaders and I liked them".

"The CIA were definitely involved in that coup. We saw the rise of the Ba'athists as a way of replacing a pro-Soviet government with a pro-American one and you don't get that chance very often.

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