July 17, 2016 by New Pilgrim
WHAT AMERICA LEARNED FROM HITLER – THE IRAQ UN SANCTIONS STARRING BILL CLINTON
WHY WASTE CLEAN WATER ON DYING CHILDREN
Effects on the Iraqi people during sanctions
High rates of malnutrition, lack of medical supplies, and diseases from lack of clean water were reported during sanctions. In 2001, the chairman of the Iraqi Medical Association’s scientific committee sent a plea to the BMJ to help it raise awareness of the disastrous effects the sanctions were having on the Iraqi healthcare system.
The modern Iraqi economy had been highly dependent on oil exports; in 1989, the oil sector comprised 61% of the GNP. A drawback of this dependence was the narrowing of the economic base, with the agricultural sector rapidly declining in the 1970s. Some claim that, as a result, the post-1990 sanctions had a particularly devastating effect on Iraq’s economy and food security levels of the population.
Shortly after the sanctions were imposed, the Iraqi government developed a system of free food rations consisting of 1000 calories per person/day or 40% of the daily requirements, on which an estimated 60% of the population relied for a vital part of their sustenance. With the introduction of the Oil-for-Food Programme in 1997, this situation gradually improved. In May 2000 a United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) survey noted that almost half the children under 5 years suffered from diarrhoea, in a country where the population is marked by its youth, with 45% being under 14 years of age in 2000. Power shortages, lack of spare parts and insufficient technical know-how lead to the breakdown of many modern facilities. The per capita income in Iraq dropped from $3510 in 1989 to $450 in 1996, heavily influenced by the rapid devaluation of the Iraqi dinar.
Iraq had been one of the few countries in the Middle East that invested in women’s education. But this situation changed from the late eighties on with increasing militarisation and a declining economic situation. Consequently, the economic hardships and war casualties in the last decades have increased the number of women-headed households and working women.
Chlorine is commonly used to purify water, but because it can also be used to make poisonous chlorine gas its import was severely restricted.  After inspecting Baghdad’s facilities, David Sole, President of the Sanitary Chemists & Technicians Association, noting a high rates of diseases from lack of clean water followed the Gulf War and sanctions, recommended that liquid chlorine be sent to Iraq todisinfect water supplies.
Denis Halliday was appointed United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator in Baghdad, Iraq as of 1 September 1997, at the Assistant Secretary-General level. In October 1998 he resigned after a 34-year career with the UN in order to have the freedom to criticise the sanctions regime, saying “I don’t want to administer a programme that satisfies the definition of genocide“ However, Sophie Boukhari a UNESCO Courier journalist, reports that “some legal experts are skeptical about or even against using such terminology” and quotes Mario Bettati: “People who talk like that don’t know anything about law. The embargo has certainly affected the Iraqi people badly, but that’s not at all a crime against humanity or genocide.”
Halliday’s successor, Hans von Sponeck, subsequently also resigned in protest, calling the effects of the sanctions a “true human tragedy”. Jutta Burghardt, head of the World Food Program in Iraq, followed them.
THE DOCUMENT OF TOTAL HORROR ABOUT DEPRIVING MILLIONS OF CIVILLIANS OF CLEAN WATER STARTS ON PAGE 7 – THE MOST GENOCIDAL STEP BY STEP RUINATION OF ALL OF IRAQS WATER AS PLANNED FOR BY THE ARMED FORCES AND CARRIED OUT TILL THE WAR OF 2003. THIS IS THE GENOCIDE OF 500,000 CHILDREN UNDER AGE 5 WHO CANNOT LIVE WITH DEHYDRATING DIARHEA FOR MORE THEN A FEW DAYS AND HAD NO CLEAN WATER ANYWHERE TO REPLACE THE TOXIC LIQUID THAT WAS KILLING THEM. THE START OF THESE SANCTIONS WAS UNDER PRESIDENT GEORGE BISH SENIOR BUT TAKRN OVER AND INCREASED BY BILL CLINTON FOR HIS ENTIRE TWO TERMS. DENNIS HALLIDAY
The following is mirrored from its source at: http://www.progressive.org/0801issue/nagy0901.html with footnote citations located and added in by the ratitor.
Over the last two years, I’ve discovered documents of the Defense Intelligence Agency proving beyond a doubt that, contrary to the Geneva Convention, the U.S. government intentionally used sanctions against Iraq to degrade the country’s water supply after the Gulf War. The United States knew the cost that civilian Iraqis, mostly children, would pay, and it went ahead anyway.
“Iraq depends on importing specialized equipment and some chemicals to purify its water supply, most of which is heavily mineralized and frequently brackish to saline,” the document states.
“With no domestic sources of both water treatment replacement parts and some essential chemicals, Iraq will continue attempts to circumvent United Nations Sanctions to import these vital commodities. Failing to secure supplies will result in a shortage of pure drinking water for much of the population. This could lead to increased incidences, if not epidemics, of disease.”
The document goes into great technical detail about the sources and quality of Iraq’s water supply. The quality of untreated water “generally is poor,” and drinking such water “could result in diarrhea,” the document says. It notes that Iraq’s rivers “contain biological materials, pollutants, and are laden with bacteria. Unless the water is purified with chlorine, epidemics of such diseases as cholera, hepatitis, and typhoid could occur.”
The document notes that the importation of chlorine “has been embargoed” by sanctions. “Recent reports indicate the chlorine supply is critically low.”
Food and medicine will also be affected, the document states. “Food processing, electronic, and, particularly, pharmaceutical plants require extremely pure water that is free from biological contaminants,” it says.
The document addresses possible Iraqi countermeasures to obtain drinkable water despite sanctions.
“Iraq conceivably could truck water from the mountain reservoirs to urban areas. But the capability to gain significant quantities is extremely limited,” the document states.
“The amount of pipe on hand and the lack of pumping stations would limit laying pipelines to these reservoirs. Moreover, without chlorine purification, the water still would contain biological pollutants. Some affluent Iraqis could obtain their own minimally adequate supply of good quality water from Northern Iraqi sources. If boiled, the water could be safely consumed. Poorer Iraqis and industries requiring large quantities of pure water would not be able to meet their needs.”
The document also discounted the possibility of Iraqis using rainwater. “Precipitation occurs in Iraq during the winter and spring, but it falls primarily in the northern mountains,” it says. “Sporadic rains, sometimes heavy, fall over the lower plains. But Iraq could not rely on rain to provide adequate pure water.”
As an alternative, “Iraq could try convincing the United Nations or individual countries to exempt water treatment supplies from sanctions for humanitarian reasons,” the document says. “It probably also is attempting to purchase supplies by using some sympathetic countries as fronts. If such attempts fail, Iraqi alternatives are not adequate for their national requirements.”
In cold language, the document spells out what is in store:
“Iraq will suffer increasing shortages of purified water because of the lack of required chemicals and desalination membranes. Incidences of disease, including possible epidemics, will become probable unless the population were careful to boil water.”
The document gives a timetable for the destruction of Iraq’s water supplies.
“Iraq’s overall water treatment capability will suffer a slow decline, rather than a precipitous halt,” it says. “Although Iraq is already experiencing a loss of water treatment capability, it probably will take at least six months (to June 1991) before the system is fully degraded.”
This document, which was partially declassified but unpublicized in 1995, can be found on the Pentagon’s web site at www.gulflink.osd.mil. (I disclosed this document last fall. But the news media showed little interest in it. The only reporters I know of who wrote lengthy stories on it were Felicity Arbuthnot in the Sunday Herald of Scotland, who broke the story, and Charlie Reese of the Orlando Sentinel, who did a follow-up.)
Recently, I have come across other DIA documents that confirm the Pentagon’s monitoring of the degradation of Iraq’s water supply. These documents have not been publicized until now.
The first one in this batch is called “Disease Information,” and is also dated January 22, 1991. At the top, it says, “Subject: Effects of Bombing on Disease Occurrence in Baghdad.” The analysis is blunt:
“Increased incidence of diseases will be attributable to degradation of normal preventive medicine, waste disposal, water purification/distribution, electricity, and decreased ability to control disease outbreaks. Any urban area in Iraq that has received infrastructure damage will have similar problems.”
The document proceeds to itemize the likely outbreaks. It mentions “acute diarrhea” brought on by bacteria such as E. coli, shigella, and salmonella, or by protozoa such as giardia, which will affect “particularly children,” or by rotavirus, which will also affect “particularly children,” a phrase it puts in parentheses. And it cites the possibilities of typhoid and cholera outbreaks.
The document warns that the Iraqi government may “blame the United States for public health problems created by the military conflict.”
The second DIA document, “Disease Outbreaks in Iraq,” is dated February 21, 1990, but the year is clearly a typo and should be 1991. It states: “Conditions are favorable for communicable disease outbreaks, particularly in major urban areas affected by coalition bombing.” It adds:
“Infectious disease prevalence in major Iraqi urban areas targeted by coalition bombing (Baghdad, Basrah) undoubtedly has increased since the beginning of Desert Storm. . . . Current public health problems are attributable to the reduction of normal preventive medicine, waste disposal, water purification and distribution, electricity, and the decreased ability to control disease outbreaks.”
This document lists the
“most likely diseases during next sixty-ninety days (descending order): diarrheal diseases (particularly children); acute respiratory illnesses (colds and influenza); typhoid; hepatitis A (particularly children); measles, diphtheria, and pertussis (particularly children); meningitis, including meningococcal (particularly children); cholera (possible, but less likely).”
Like the previous document, this one warns that the Iraqi government might “propagandize increases of endemic diseases.”
The third document in this series, “Medical Problems in Iraq,” is dated March 15, 1991. It says:
“Communicable diseases in Baghdad are more widespread than usually observed during this time of the year and are linked to the poor sanitary conditions (contaminated water supplies and improper sewage disposal) resulting from the war. According to a United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)/World Health Organization report, the quantity of potable water is less than 5 percent of the original supply, there are no operational water and sewage treatment plants, and the reported incidence of diarrhea is four times above normal levels. Additionally, respiratory infections are on the rise. Children particularly have been affected by these diseases.”
Perhaps to put a gloss on things, the document states, “There are indications that the situation is improving and that the population is coping with the degraded conditions.” But it adds: “Conditions in Baghdad remain favorable for communicable disease outbreaks.”
The fourth document, “Status of Disease at Refugee Camps,” is dated May 1991. The summary says, “Cholera and measles have emerged at refugee camps. Further infectious diseases will spread due to inadequate water treatment and poor sanitation.”
The reason for this outbreak is clearly stated again.
“The main causes of infectious diseases, particularly diarrhea, dysentery, and upper respiratory problems, are poor sanitation and unclean water. These diseases primarily afflict the old and young children.”
The fifth document, “Health Conditions in Iraq, June 1991,” is still heavily censored. All I can make out is that the DIA sent a source
“to assess health conditions and determine the most critical medical needs of Iraq. Source observed that Iraqi medical system was in considerable disarray, medical facilities had been extensively looted, and almost all medicines were in critically short supply.”
In one refugee camp, the document says, “at least 80 percent of the population” has diarrhea. At this same camp, named Cukurca, “cholera, hepatitis type B, and measles have broken out.”
The protein deficiency disease kwashiorkor was observed in Iraq “for the first time,” the document adds. “Gastroenteritis was killing children. . . . In the south, 80 percent of the deaths were children (with the exception of Al Amarah, where 60 percent of deaths were children).”
The final document is “Iraq: Assessment of Current Health Threats and Capabilities,” and it is dated November 15, 1991. This one has a distinct damage-control feel to it. Here is how it begins:
“Restoration of Iraq’s public health services and shortages of major medical materiel remain dominant international concerns. Both issues apparently are being exploited by Saddam Hussein in an effort to keep public opinion firmly against the U.S. and its Coalition allies and to direct blame away from the Iraqi government.”
It minimizes the extent of the damage.
“Although current countrywide infectious disease incidence in Iraq is higher than it was before the Gulf War, it is not at the catastrophic levels that some groups predicted. The Iraqi regime will continue to exploit disease incidence data for its own political purposes.”
And it places the blame squarely on Saddam Hussein. “Iraq’s medical supply shortages are the result of the central government’s stockpiling, selective distribution, and exploitation of domestic and international relief medical resources.” It adds: “Resumption of public health programs . . . depends completely on the Iraqi government.”
As these documents illustrate, the United States knew sanctions had the capacity to devastate the water treatment system of Iraq. It knew what the consequences would be: increased outbreaks of disease and high rates of child mortality. And it was more concerned about the public relations nightmare for Washington than the actual nightmare that the sanctions created for innocent Iraqis.
The Geneva Convention is absolutely clear. In a 1979 protocol relating to the “protection of victims of international armed conflicts,” Article 54, it states:
“It is prohibited to attack, destroy, remove, or render useless objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population, such as foodstuffs, crops, livestock, drinking water installations and supplies, and irrigation works, for the specific purpose of denying them for their sustenance value to the civilian population or to the adverse Party, whatever the motive, whether in order to starve out civilians, to cause them to move away, or for any other motive.”
But that is precisely what the U.S. government did, with malice aforethought. It “destroyed, removed, or rendered useless” Iraq’s “drinking water installations and supplies.” The sanctions, imposed for a decade largely at the insistence of the United States, constitute a violation of the Geneva Convention. They amount to a systematic effort to, in the DIA’s own words, “fully degrade” Iraq’s water sources.
At a House hearing on June 6, Representative Cynthia McKinney, Democrat of Georgia, referred to the document “Iraq Water Treatment Vulnerabilities” and said: “Attacking the Iraqi public drinking water supply flagrantly targets civilians and is a violation of the Geneva Convention and of the fundamental laws of civilized nations.”
Over the last decade, Washington extended the toll by continuing to withhold approval for Iraq to import the few chemicals and items of equipment it needed in order to clean up its water supply.
Last summer, Representative Tony Hall, Democrat of Ohio, wrote to then-Secretary of State Madeleine Albright “about the profound effects of the increasing deterioration of Iraq’s water supply and sanitation systems on its children’s health.” Hall wrote,
“The prime killer of children under five years of age — diarrheal diseases — has reached epidemic proportions, and they now strike four times more often than they did in 1990. . . . Holds on contracts for the water and sanitation sector are a prime reason for the increases in sickness and death. Of the eighteen contracts, all but one hold was placed by the U.S. government. The contracts are for purification chemicals, chlorinators, chemical dosing pumps, water tankers, and other equipment. . . . I urge you to weigh your decision against the disease and death that are the unavoidable result of not having safe drinking water and minimum levels of sanitation.”
For more than ten years, the United States has deliberately pursued a policy of destroying the water treatment system of Iraq, knowing full well the cost in Iraqi lives. The United Nations has estimated that more than 500,000 Iraqi children have died as a result of sanctions, and that 5,000 Iraqi children continue to die every month for this reason.
No one can say that the United States didn’t know what it was doing.
See for Yourself
All the DIA documents mentioned in this article were found at the Department of Defense’s Gulflink site.
To read or print documents:
- go to gulflink.osd.mil
- click on “Declassified Documents” on the left side of the front page
- the next page is entitled “Browse Recently Declassified Documents”
- click on “search” under “Declassifed Documents” on the left side of that page
- the next page is entitled “Search Recently Declassified Documents”
- enter search terms such as “disease information effects of bombing”
- click on the search button
- the next page is entitled “Data Sources”
- click on DIA
- click on one of the titles
It’s not the easiest, best-organized site on the Internet, but I have found the folks at Gulflink to be helpful and responsive.
Thomas J. Nagy
FAIR USE NOTICE: This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml
- Excerpts of “Iraq Water Treatment Vulnerabilities”, 22 January 1991, (emphasis added):
FM: DIA WASHINGTON DC
INFO: CENTAF; UK STRIKE COMMAND; MARCENT; 18 ABC; NAVCENT; SOCCENT; 7TH CORPS; ANKARA
SUBJECT: IRAQ WATER TREATMMENT VULNERABILITIES (U)
AS OF 18 JAN 91 KEY JUDGMENTS.
1. IRAO DEPENDS ON IMPORTING-SPECIALIZED EQUIPMENT-AND SOME CHEMICALS TO PURIFY ITS WATER SUPPLY, MOST OF WHICH IS HEAVILY MINERALIZED AND FREQUENTLY BRACKISH TO SALINE.
2. WITH NO DOMESTIC SOURCES OF BOTH WATER TREATMENT REPLACEMENT PARTS AND SOME ESSENTIAL CHEMICALS, IRAO WILL CONTINUE ATTEMPTS TO CIRCUMVENT UNITED NATIONS SANCTIONS TO IMPORT THESE VITAL COMMODITIES.
3. FAILING TO SECURE SUPPLIES WILL RESULT IN A SHORTAGE OF PURE DRINKING WATER FOR MUCH OF THE POPULATION. THIS COULD LEAD TO INCREASED INCIDENCES, IF NOT EPIDEMICS, OF DISEASE….
28. THE ENTIRE IRAOI WATER TREATMENT SYSTEM WILL NOT COLLAPSE PRECIPITOUSLY…. FULL DEGRADATION OF THE WATER TREATMENT SYSTEM PROBABLY WILL TAKE AT LEAST ANOTHER 6 MONTHS.
- “Disease Information,” 22 January 1991, http://www.gulflink.osd.mil/declassdocs/dia/19950901/950901_0504rept_91.html
- “Disease Outbreaks in Iraq,” 21 February 1990, http://www.gulflink.osd.mil/declassdocs/dia/19950901/950901_0pgv072_90p.html
- “Medical Problems in Iraq,” 15 March 1991,
- “Status of Disease at Refugee Camps,” May 1991,
- “Health Conditions in Iraq,” June 1991,
- “Iraq: Assessment of Current Health Threats and Capabilities,” November 15, 1991,
- “Oppressors at the Rein: Has the UN Commission on Human Rights Lost its Course? A Review of its Mission, Operations, and Structure,” International Operations and Human Rights Subcommittee of the House International Relations Committee, Ranking Member Cynthia McKinney’s Hearing Statement, 6 June 2001,
- Document Page: First| Prev | Next | All | Image | This Release | Search
- File: 950901_511rept_91.txt
Total Pages: 1
- IRAQ WATER TREATMMENT VULNERABILITIES (U)
- DTG: 221900Z JAN 91
- FM: DIA WASHINGTON DC
- VIA: NMIST NET
- TO: CENTCOM
- INFO: CENTAF
- UK STRIKE COMMAND
- 18 ABC
- 7TH CORPS
- SUBJECT: IRAQ WATER TREATMMENT VULNERABILITIES (U)
- AS OF 18 JAN 91 KEY JUDGMENTS.
- IRAO DEPENDS ON IMPORTING-SPECIALIZED EQUIPMENT-AND
- SOME CHEMICALS TO PURIFY ITS WATER SUPPLY, MOST OF WHICH IS
- HEAVILY MINERALIZED AND FREQUENTLY BRACKISH TO SALINE.
- WITH NO DOMESTIC SOURCES OF BOTH WATER TREATMENT REPLACEMENT PARTS AND SOME ESSENTIAL CHEMICALS, IRAO WILL
- CONTINUE ATTEMPTS TO CIRCUMVENT UNITED NATIONS SANCTIONS TO
- IMPORT THESE VITAL COMMODITIES.
- FAILING TO SECURE SUPPLIES WILL RESULT IN A SHORTAGE OF
- PURE DRINKING WATER FOR MUCH OF THE POPULATION. THIS COULD LEAD
- TO INCREASED INCIDENCES, IF NOT EPIDEMICS, OF DISEASE AND TO
- CERTAIN PURE-WATER-DEPENDENT INDUSTRIES BECOMING INCAPACITATED,
- INCLUDING PETRO CHEMICALS, FERTILIZERS, PETROLEUM REFINING,
- ELECTRONICS,PHARMACEUTICALS, FOOD PROCESSING, TEXTILES, CONCRETE
- CONSTRUCTION,AND THERMAL POWERPLANTS.
- IRAQ’S OVERALL WATER TREATMENT CAPABILITY WILL SUFFER A
- SLOW DECLINE, RATHER THAN A PRECIPITOUS HALT, AS DWINDLING
- SUPPLIES AND CANNIBALIZED PARTS ARE CONCENTRATED AT HIGHER
- PRIORITY LOCATIONS. ALTHOUGH IRAQ IS ALREADY EXPERIENCING A LOSS
- OF WATERTREATMENT CAPABILITY, IT PROBABLY WILL TAKE AT LEAST SIX
- MONTHS (TO JUNE 1991) BEFORE THE SYSTEM IS FULLY DEGRADED.
- UNLESS WATER TREATMENT SUPPLIES ARE EXEMPTED FROM THE
- UNSANCTIONS FOR HUMANITARIAN REASONS, NO ADEQUATE SOLUTION
- EXISTS FOR IRAQ’S WATER PURIFICATION DILEMMA, SINCE NO SUITABLE
- ALTERNATIVES,INCLUDING LOOTING SUPPLIES FROM KUWAIT,
- SUFFICIENTLY MEET IRAQI NEEDS.)
- IRAQI WATER QUALITY. SURFACE WATER FROM THE TIGRIS AND
- EUPHRATES RIVER SYSTEM SUPPLIES ABOUT HALF OF IRAQ’S LAND
- AREA,INCLUDING URBAN AREAS AND THEIR ASSOCIATED INDUSTRIES.
- IRAQ’S REMAINING AREA, PRIMARILY RURAL, RELIES ON GROUND WATER
- FROM WELLS.THE QUALITY OF UNTREATED WATER THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY
- VARIES WIDELY BUT GENERALLY IS POOR. HEAVY MINERALIZATION,
- SUSPENDED SOLIDS AND,FREQUENTLY, HIGH SALINITY CHARACTERIZE
- IRAQ’S WATER SUPPLY.ALTHoUGH IRAQ HAS MADE A CONSIDERABLE EFFORT
- TO SUPPLY PURE WATER TO ITS POPULATION, THE WATER TREATMENT
- SYSTEM WAS UNRELIABLE EVEN BEFORE THE UNITED NATIONS SANCTIONS
- SALINITY CHARACTERIZE IRAO’S WATER SUPPLY.ALTHOUGH IRAQ HAS
- MADE A CONSIDERABLE EFFORT TO SUPPLY PURE WATER TO ITS
- POPULATION, THE WATER TREATMENT SYSTEM WAS UNRELIABLE EVEN
- BEFORE THE UNITED NATIONS SANCTIONS WERE IMPOSED. MOST IRAOIS
- PREFER TO DRINK IMPORTED BOTTLED WATER.
- THE MINERALS IN THE WATER INCLUDE CONCENTRATIONS OF
- CARBONATES, SULPHATES, CHLORIDES, AND, IN SOME LOCATIONS,
- DRINKING HEAVILY MINERALIZED WATER COULD RESULT IN
- DIARRHEA AND,OVER THE LONG TERM, STONES FORMING WITHIN THE
- FOR INDUSTRIAL APPLICATIONS, PIPES AND OTHER EOUIPMENT
- WOULD SCALE (BECOME ENCRUSTED), EVENTUALLY CAUSING PLANTS TO
- SHUT DOWN. SCALING IN BOILERS WOULD CAUSE EXPLOSIONS IF NOT
- PREVENTED OR REMOVED.
- MUCH OF IRAO’S GROUND WATER SUPPLIES ARE BRACKISH TO
- THE,LARGE RESERVOIRS NEAR BAGHDAD–THE THARTHAR, – .
- HABBANIYAH, AND AL MILH LAKES–ARE SALINE. SINCE THESE LAKES
- SERVE AS CATCH BASINS FOR FLOODS ON THE TIGRIS AND EUPHRATES
- RIVERS, THE IRAOIS MUST REDUCE THE WATER VOLUME IN-THE LAKES
- DURING THE LOW-WATER SEASON. EVAPARATlON DURING THE SUMMER –
- ACCOMPLISHES THIS IMPART. SINCE REDUCING THE WATER VOLUME IN
- THE LAKES ONLY INCREASES SALINITY, THE IRAQIS FLUSH THE LAKES
- BY DIVERTING FRESH WATER FROM UP STREAM ON THE TIGRIS AND
- THE FLOW IS DISCHARGED FURTHER DOWNSTREAM TO AVOID
- FILLING THE BASINS. SINCE THE DISCHARGE OCCURS WHERE THE
- RIVERS ENTER THE MESOPOTAMIAN PLAIN, THE DISCHARGE INCREASES
- THE NATURAL SALINITY OF THE WATERS DOWNSTREAM, AFFECTING
- IRRIGATED AGRICULTURAL LANDS IRAQ SPECIALIZES IN –
- SALINE-RESISTANT CROPS SUCH AS BARLEr AND DATES) AND URBAN
- AREAS, INCLUDING BAGHDAD.THE KARKH WATER TREATMENT PROJECT FOR
- WESTERN BAGHDAD HAS AN IN TAKE POINT ABOUT 40 KILOMETERS NORTH
- OF BAGHDAD, UPSTREAM FROM WHERE LAKE THARTHAR DISCHARGES INTO
- THE TIGRIS. WATER BELOW THE DISCHARGE POINT REQUIRES
- AT BASRAH, THE SHATT AL ARAB TENDS TO BE SALINE UNDER
- CONDITIONS OF LOW-RIVER WATER VOLUMES AND DEPENDING ON TIDE
- AND WIND DIRECTIONS. NORMALLY, THE SHATT AL ARAB AT BASRAH HAS
- A SALINITY OF 1,500 TO 2,000 PARTS PER MILLION (PPM). SALINITY
- HAS BEEN INCREASING OVER THE LAST 5 YEARS, AND IN THE FALL
- 1989, THE SALINITY HAD REACHED 6,000 TO 7,000 PPM, HIGHER THAN
- EXISTING DESALINIZATION SYSTEMS COULD HANDLE. (OCEAN SEAWATER
- IS ABOUT 36,000 PPM OF DISSOLVED SALTS; THE PERSIAN GULF IS
- APPROXIMATELY 42,000 PPM.BRACKISH WATER IS A MINIMUM OF 1,000
- THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION STANDARD FOR HUMAN
- CONSUMPTION IS 500 PPM OR LESS.GROUND WATER IN IRAO’S LOWER
- MESOPOTAMIAN BASIN RANGES FROM 5,000 TO 60,000 PPM, WITH SOME
- LOCATIONS REACHING 80,000). SALINE WATER IS UNFIT FOR DRINKING
- AND CORRODES INDUSTRIAL PIPES OR OTHER EXPOSED EQUIPMENT.
- (U) SUSPENDED SOLIDS, PRIMARILY SILT, IN THE TIGRIS AND
- EUPHRATES RIVER SYSTEM INCREASE WITH WATER VOLUME. UNLESS
- REMOVED FROM THE WATER, THESE PARTICLES WOULD CLOG PIPES AND
- FILTERS AND WOULD REQUIRE STRAINING BEFORE CONSUMPTION BY END
- IRAQ’S RIVERS ALSO CONTAIN BIOLOGICAL
- MATERIALS,POLLUTANTS, AND ARE LADEN WITH BACTERIA. UNLESS THE
- WATER IS PURIFIED WITH CHLORINE EPIDEMICS OF SUCH DISEASES AS
- CHOLERA,HEPATITIS, AND TYPHOID COULD OCCUR.)
- WATER TREATMENT REGIMES. WATER TREATMENT IS SPECIFIC
- TO THE IMPURITIES OF THE WATER TREATED AND TO THE APPLICATION
- FOR WHICH THE WATER WILL BE USED. THE BASIC PROCESS REQUIRES
- CLARIFICATION (REMOVING SUSPENDED SOLIDS), FILTRATION, AND,
- DRINKING AND SOME INDUSTRIAL USES, PURIFICATION. IN IRAQ, THE
- PROCESS ALSO INCLUDES DESALINATING AND WATER SOFTENING.
- CLARIFICATION REQUIRES ADDING FLOCCULANTS AND
- COAGULANTS TO THE WATER. THE IRAOIS USE ALUMINUM SULPHATE
- ALTHOUGH IRON SULPHATES ARE ACCEPTABLE TO BIND THE SUSPENDED
- SOLIDS INTO CLUMPS FOR SETTLING. IF NOT REMOVED, THE
- SEDIMENTS, OR SLUDGE, WOULD CLOG THE FILTRATION SYSTEM
- (PROBABLY SAND) AND SHUT DOWN THE WATER PURIFICATION PLANT
- UNTIL THE CLOGS WERE REMOVED. ALUMINUM SULPHATE SUPPLY LEVELS
- ARE KNOWN TO BE CRITICALLY LOW, SINCE IRAQ TRIED AND FAILED TO
- OBTAIN PRECURSOR CHEMICALS FROM JORDAN FOR ITS MANUFACTURE.
- CHLORINATION NORMALY IS ACCOMPLISHED DURING SEVERAL
- STAGES OF PURIFICATION, INCLUDING THE INITAL TREATMENT STAGE
- TO PREVENT THE EQUIPMENT FROM LIMING AND TO KILL PATHOGENS
- JUST PRIOR TO STORING THE FULLY TREATED WATER. THE CHLORINE
- USED IN MOST PLANTS IS EITHER SODIUM HYPOCHLORITE, A LIOUID,
- OR CALCIUM HYPOCHLORITE, A POWDER. IF THEY ARE EQUIPPED WITH
- INJECTORS, LOW-CAPACITY PLANTS CAN USE CHLORINE GAS DIRECTLY.
- IRAO’S PLANT IN FALLUJA AND THE PC-I PETROCHEMICAL PLANT AT
- BASRAH PRODUCE SODIUM HYPOCHLORITE AND, AS A BY-PRODUCT,
- CAUSTIC SODA, WHICH IS USED TO ADJUST THE PH OF WATER
- NORMALLY, BOTH LOCATIONS PRODUCE RELATIVELY SMALL
- QUANTITIES OF CHLORINE FOR INDUSTRIAL AND SOME MUNICIPAL USE;
- CHLORINE FOR MUNICIPAL SUPPLIES ALSO IS IMPORTED.RECENT
- REPORTS INDICATE THE CHLORINE SUPPLY IS CRITICALLY LOW. ITS
- IMPORTATION HAS BEEN EMBARGOED, AND BOTH MAIN PRODUCTION
- PLANTS EITHER HAD BEEN SHUT DOWN FOR A TIME OR HAVE BEEN
- PRODUCING MINIMAL OUTPUTS BECAUSE OF THE LACK OF IMPORTED
- CHEMICALS AND THE INABILITY TO REPLACE PARTS. PREVIOUSLY WHEN
- SUPPLIES WERE LOW, THE IRAQI SHAVE STOPPED CHLORINATING THE
- DRINKING WATER, BUT ONLY FOR SHORT PERIODS. TO RETARD ALGAE
- GROWTH, WHICH COULD CLOG PIPES, COPPER SULPHATE NORMALLY IS
- ADDED TO THE WATER. BUT THIS PRACTICE HAS NOT BEEN VERIFIED IN
- IRAO, AND SUPPLIES OF COPPER SULPHATE ARE UNKNOWN.SULFURIC
- ACID TYPICALLY IS ADDED AS WELL, BUT IRAQ PROBABLY CAN PRODUCE
- SUFFICIENT SUPPLIES.
- IRAQ APPARENTLY USES LIME, AT LEAST AT THE NEW KARKH
- TREATMENT PLANT, TO SOFTEN WATER. THE LIME PRECIPITATES
- COLLOIDAL CARBONATE IMPURITIES FROM THE WATER. SODA ASH AND
- ZEOLITES ALSO NORMALLY ARE USED TO REMOVE NONCARBONATE MINERAL
- IMPURITIES, BUT THEIR USE IN IRAO HAS NOT BEEN DETERMINED.
- LOCAL COMPANIES SELL BOTTLED SOFT WATER IN IRAO, SUGGESTING
- THAT MUNICIPAL WATER SYSTEMS DO NOT NORMALLY SOFTEN WATER.
- IRAQ SHOULD HAVE NO SHORTAGES OF LIME. HOWEVER, THE LACK OF
- SOFTENING CHEMICALS REPORTEDLY HAS INCAPACITATED THE BOTTLED
- SOFT-WATER INDUSTRY.
- BETWEEN 1982 AND 1990, SOME IRAOI INDUSTRIES INSTALLED
- REVERSIBLE ION EXCHANGE ELECTRODIALYSIS MEMBRANE SYSTEMS,
- OBTAINED FROM AN AMERICAN SOURCE, TO SOFTEN AND DESALINATE
- THE MEMBRANES LAST 5 TO 7 YEARS AND DO NOT REQUIRE
- CHEMICAL PRETREATMENT OF THE WATER. THEY NORMALLY SERVE
- SMALLER VOLUME REQUIREMENTS.HOWEVER, A MAJOR OIL REFINERY, AL
- DAURA IN BAGHDAD, INSTALLED THIS SYSTEM IN 1985, AND IT
- PRODUCES 24,000 CUBIC METERS OF PURIFIED WATER PER DAY.
- ABOUT ONE QUARTER OF ALL IRAOI WATER SUPPLIED FOR
- INDUSTRIAL AND HUMAN CONSUMPTION REQUIRES DESALINIZATION. IRAO
- RELIES ALMOST EXCLUSIVELY ON ION EXCHANGE OR REVERSE OSMOSIS
- SYSTEMS RATHER THAN MULTISTAGE FLASH UNITS. ION EXCHANGE AND
- REVERSE OSMOSIS MEMBRANES ARE SPECIFIC TO THE TYPE OF
- EQUIPMENT OF WHICH THEY ARE A COMPONENT, AS ARE THE CHEMICALS
- PREVIOUS IRAQI USE OF SUBSTITUTES HAS NOT BEEN
- IRAO REPORTEDLY DEPENDS ON IMPORTED MEMBRANES
- AND IMPORTS CHEMICALS FROM SEVERAL SOURCES. IRAQ HAD NOT
- COMPLETED THE MAJOR PURCHASE AND DELIVERY OF SPARE MEMBRANES
- BEFORE INVADING KUWAIT. ATTEMPTS TO PROCURE MEMBRANES SINCE
- THE UN SANCTIONS WERE IMPOSED HAVE FAILED. SINCE THE ATTEMPT
- TO IMPORT MEMBRANES CORRESPONED TO THEIR NORMAL REPLACEMENT PERIOD, IRAQ
- APPARENTLY DID NOT STOCKPILE ABUNDANT SPACE MEMBRANES OR CHEMICALS AND
- PROBABLY HAD NO MORE THAN A 2-MONTH SUPPLY PRIOR TO THE INVASION.
- POLYAMIDE MEMBRANES WHICH IRAO USES IN SOME
- DESALINIZATION EOUIPMENT, DETERIORATE WHEN EXPOSED TO CHLORINE
- PRIOR TO PASSING THROUGH THE MEMBRANE, WAT-ER IS TREATED
- WITH SODIUM METABISULPHITE TO REMOVE THE CHLORINE USED IN
- THE CHLORINE THEN IS RE-STORED FOR LATER
- THE STATUS OF SODIUM METABISULPHITE SUPPLIES IS
- NOT KNOWN, BUT SUPPLIES PROBABLY ARE DWINDLING, WHICH WILL
- ESCALATE FAILURES OF THIS MEMBRANE TYPE.IRAO ALSO USES
- CELLULOSE ACETATE MEMBRANES (AN OLD TECHNOLOGY),WHICH HAVE AN
- EXCEPTIONALLY SHORT LIFE AND ARE SUSCEPTIBLE TO BIOLOGICAL
- IRAO REPORTEDLY CAN MANUFACTURE CELLULOSE
- MEMBRANES, BUT THE AVAILABILITY OF PRECURSOR STOCKS IS
- PROBABLY LOW.IRAQ HAD BEEN ACOUIRING REVERSE ELECTRODIALYSIS
- ION EXCHANGE MEMBRANES PRIOR TO THE UN SANCTIONS. HOWEVER,
- MOST SYSTEMS USE REVERSE OSMOSIS OR UNIDIRECTIONAL
- ELECTRODIALYSIS, WHICH, UNLIKE REVERSE ELECTRODIALYSIS
- MEMBRANES, REOUIRE CHEMICALS TO MAKE THEM WORK.)
- INDUSTRIAL WATER TREATMENT. INDUSTRIES REQUIRE TREATED
- WATER, AND THE TYPE OF TREATMENT DEPENDS ON THE
- NORMALLY, SOFTENING AND DESALINIZATION ARE
- REOUIRED TO PREVENT PIPE SAND EOUIPMENT FROM CORRODING OR
- IN THE PETRO CHEMICAL INDUSTRY, WATER USED FOR
- COOLING IS PARTIALLY TREATED TO PREVENT SCALING. WATER USED IN
- THERMAL POWERPLANTS OR REFINERIES TO PRODUCE STEAM MUST BE
- PURE TO PREVENT BOTH CORROSION AND SCALING.OTHERWISE, LOSS OF
- CAPABILITY COULD OCCUR WITHIN 2 MONTHS. IN ADDITION, FOOD
- PROCESSING, ELECTRONIC, AND, PARTICULARLY,PHARMACEUTICAL
- PLANTS REOUIRE EXTREMELY PURE WATER THAT IS FREE FROM
- BIOLOGICAL CONTAMINANTS. LARGE INDUSTRIAL PLANTS, INCLUDING
- PETROCHEMICAL, REFINING, AND FERTILIZER PLANTS, COLLOCATE
- THEIR WATER TREATMENT FACILITIES. TURNKEY CONTRACTORS BUILT
- THESE FACILITIES, AND THE PARTS ARE SPECIFIC TO EACH SYSTEM,
- WHICH COMPLICATES THEIR REPLACEMENT. THE IRAOIS COULD NOT
- MANUFACTURE DUPLICATES AND THEIR IMPORTATION IS EMBARGOED.)
- IRAQI ALTERNATIVES. IRAQ COULD TRY CONVINCING THE
- UNITED NATIONS OR INDIVIDUAL COUNTRIES TO EXEMPT WATER
- TREATMENT SUPPLIES FROM SANCTIONS FOR HUMANITARIAN REASONS. IT
- PROBABLY ALSO IS ATTEMPTING TO PURCHASE SUPPLIES BY USING SOME
- SYMPATHETIC COUNTRIES AS FRONTS. IF SUCH ATTEMPTS FAIL, IRAQI
- ALTERNATIVES ARE NOT ADEOUATE FOR THEIR NATIONAL REOUIREMENTS.
- VARIOUS IRAOI INDUSTRIES HAVE WATER TREATMENT CHEMICAL
- SAND EQUIPMENT ON HAND, IF THEY HAVE NOT ALREADY BEEN CONSUMED
- OR BROKEN. IRAO POSSIBLY COULD CANNIBALIZE PARTS OR ENTIRE
- SYSTEMS FROM LOWER TO HIGHER PRIORITY PLANTS, AS WELL AS
- DIVERT CHEMICALS,SUCH AS CHLORINE. HOWEVER, THIS CAPABILITY
- WOULD BE LIMITED AND TEMPORARY. IRAQ PREVIOUSLY HAD ACQUIRED
- SEVERAL HUNDRED CONTAINERIZED REVERSE OSMOSIS MODULES FOR ‘
- LOCALIZED USE THAT COULD BE RELOCATED. WITHOUT CHEMICALS AND
- REPLACEMENT MEMBRANES, THESE UNITS WHERE EVENTUALLY WOULD BECOME
- HOWEVER, CONSOLIDATING CHEMICALS OR CANNIBALIZING
- PARTS AND MOVING UNITS WHERE NECESSARY COULD SUSTAIN SOME
- PURIFICATION OPERATIONS INDUSTRIAL PLANTS THAT ARE INOPERABLE
- FOR REASONS-OTHER THAN THE LACK OF WATER TREATMENT SUPPLIES
- COULD PROCESS WATER FOR MUNICIPAL NEEDS OR POSSIBLY RELOCATE
- THEIR PURIFICATION EOUIPMENT.
- THE DIFFERENCE IN WATER TREATMENT SYSTEMS LIMITS THE
- BENEFITS TO IRAQ OF PLUNDERING KUWAIT’S WATER TREATMENT
- THE KUWAITIS RELY PRIMARILY ON DESALINATING
- SEAWATER, AND THEIR WATER NEEDS ARE CONSIDERABLY SMALLER THAN
- IRAQ’S. IRAQ COULD NOT USE CHEMICALS INTENDED FOR KUWAITI
- WATER TREATMENT SYSTEMS, EXCEPT FOR LIMITED QUANTITIES OF
- ATTEMPTS TO CIRCUMVENT THE SANCTIONS TO OBTAIN WATER
- TREATMENT CHEMICALS SUGGEST THAT ANY USEFUL SUPPLIES FROM
- KUWAIT ALREADY HAVE BEEN LOOTED AND USED.
- IRAO HAS INSTALLED A PIPELINE FROM THE DOHA
- DESALINIZATION PLANT IN KUWAIT THAT CONNECTS WITH DISTRIBUTION
- PIPES AT A WATERTREATMENT PLANT NEAR BASRAH. THIS SOURCE OF
- PURE WATER APPARENTLY HAS ENABLED THE PC-I PETROCHEMICAL PLANT
- TO OPERATE AND TO PRODUCE CHLORINE BY ELECTROLYSIS OF KUWAITI
- WATER MIXED WITH PURE SODIUM CHLORIDE. AT LEAST SOME OF THIS
- CHLORINE PROBABLY IS USED FOR MUNICIPAL WATER PURIFICATION,
- BUT THE OUANTITY PRODUCED WOULD BE INADEOUATE FOR NATIONAL
- MOREOVER, SOME OF THE CHLORINE PROBABLY IS USED
- AT THE PC-I PLANT TO MAKE POLYVINYL CHLORIDES TO CREATE THE
- PLASTIC SHEETS USED IN AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTION. THE USE OF
- KUWAITI WATER PROBABLY WILL NOT LAST LONG SINCE THE DOHA PLANT
- USES THE MULTISTAGE FLASH DESALINIZATION PROCESS, WHICH
- REOUIRES ACID DOSING OR THE ADDITION OF POLYMERS TO PREVENT
- SCALING OF THE HEAT EXCHANGES. THE UN SANCTIONS MAY PREVENT
- RESUPPLY OF THESE CHEMICALS. INTENSIVE MAINTENANCE ALSO IS
- REOUIRED TO KEEP THE UNITS OPERATING, AND THAT PROBABLY WOULD
- REOUIRE THE SERVICES OF TRAINED KUWAITI EMPLOYEES SINCE IRAQ
- HAS LITTLE EXPERIENCE WITH MULTISTAGE FLASH UNITS.
- IRAQ’S BEST SOURCES OF QUALITY WATER ARE IN THE
- MOUNTAINS OF THE NORTH AND NORTHEAST, WHERE MINERALIZATION AND
- SALINITY ARE WITHIN ACCEPTABLE LIMITS. FOR THE SHORT TERM,
- IRAO CONCEIVABLY COULD TRUCK WATER FROM THE MOUNTAIN
- RESERVOIRS TO URBAN AREAS. BUT THE CAPABILITY TO GAIN
- SIGNIFICANT QUANTITIES IS EXTREMELY LIMITED. THE AMOUNT OF PIPE
- ON HAND AND THE LACK OF PUMPING STATIONS WOULD LIMIT LAYING
- PIPELINES TO THESE RESERVOIRS. MOREOVER, WITHOUT CHLORINE
- PURIFICATION, THE WATER STILL WOULD CONTAIN BIOLOGICAL
- SOME AFFLUENT IRAQIS COULD OBTAIN THEIR OWN
- MINIMALLY ADEQUATE SUPPLY OF GOOD OUALITY WATER FROM NORTHERN
- IRAOI SOURCES.IF BOILED, THE WATER COULD BE SAFELY CONSUMED.
- POORER IRAQIS AND INDUSTRIES REQUIRING LARGE OUANTITIES OF PURE
- WATER WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO MEET THEIR NEEDS.
- PRECIPITATION OCCURS IN IRAQ DURING THE WINTER AND
- SPRING,BUT IT FALLS PRIMARILY IN THE NORTHERN MOUNTAINS.
- SPORADIC RAINS,SOMETIMES HEAVY , FALL OVER THE LOWER PLAINS.
- BUT IRAQ COULD NOT RELY ON RAIN TO PROVIDE ADEQUATE PURE
- THE SALINE OR ALKALINE CONTENT-OF GROUND WATER IN MOST
- LOCATIONS WOULD CONSTRAIN DRILLING WELLS IN THE MESOPOTAMIAN
- PLAIN TO OBTAIN PURER WATER MOREOVER, MUCH OF THE POPULATION
- USES SEPTIC TANKS, AND THE UNDERLYING GEOLOGY AND TOPOGRAPHY
- WOULD CONTAMINATE WELLS IN MANY LOCATIONS.))OUTLOOK)
- IRAQ WILL SUFFER INCREASING SHORTAGES OF PURIFIED
- WATER BECAUSE OF THE LACK OF REOUIRED CHEMICALS AND
- DESALINIZATION MEMBRANES. INCIDENCES OF DISEASE, INCLUDING
- POSSIBLE EPIDEMICS,WILL BECOME PROBABLE UNLESS THE POPULATION
- WERE CAREFUL TO BOIL WATER BEFORE CONSUMPTION, PARTICULARLY
- SINCE THE SEWAGE TREATMENT SYSTEM, NEVER A HIGH PRIORITY, WILL
- SUFFER THE SAME LOSS OF CAPABILITY WITH THE LACK OF CHLORINE.
- LOCALLY PRODUCED FOOD AND MEDICINE COULD BE CONTAMINATED. LACK
- OF COAGULATION CHEMICALS WILL CAUSE PERIODIC SHUTDOWNS OF
- TREATMENT PLANTS FOR UNCLOGGING AND CLEANING FILTERS, CAUSING
- INTERRUPTIONS OF WATER SUPPLIES. AS DESALINIZATION EQUIPMENT
- BECOMES INOPERABLE, SALINE WATER SOURCES WILL BECOME
- INCREASINGLY UNUSABLE. TEMPORARY OR PERMANENT SHUT DOWNS OF
- INDUSTRIAL PLANTS THAT RELY ON TREATED WATER WILL
- CANNIBALIZING LOWER PRIORITY OPERATIONS WILL
- ACCELERATE THE TREND.
- THE ENTIRE IRAOI WATER TREATMENT SYSTEM WILL NOT
- COLLAPSE PRECIPITOUSLY, BUT ITS CAPABILITIES WILL DECLINE
- STEADILY AS DWINDLING SUPPLIES INCREASINGLY ARE DIVERTED TO
- HIGHER PRIORITY SITES WITH COMPATIBLE EQUIPMENT. KARKH, IRAO’S
- LARGEST WATERTREATMENT PLANT (AND ONE OF THE WORLD’S LARGEST),
- WAS DESIGNED TO STORE 30 DAYS OF SUPPLIES ON SITE. THE
- QUANTITY OF SUPPLIES, IF ANY, NORMALLY STOCKPILED IN
- CENTRALIZED WAREHOUSES BEFORE SHIPMENT TO TREATMENT PLANTS IS
- UNKNOWN, BUT A 6 MONTH TO I YEAR SUPPLY OF CHEMICALS IS THE
- NORMAL INDUSTRIAL PRACTICE. HOWEVER, CURRENT IRAQI EFFORTS TO
- OBTAIN CHEMICALS AND MEMBRANES AND THE INSTALLATION OF A
- PIPELINE TO OBTAIN PURE KUWAITI WATER SUGGEST THAT THERE WAS
- NOT ADEOUATE STOCKPILING PRIOR TO THE INVASION OF KUWAIT. SOME
- CHEMICALS ARE DEPLETED OR ARE NEARING DEPLETION, AND OLDER
- MEMBRANES ARE NOT BEING REPLACED ON SCHEDULE. CONSEOUENTLY,
- IRAQ PROBABLY IS USING UNTREATED OR PARTIALLY TREATED WATER IN
- SOME LOCATIONS. FULL DEGRADATION OF THE WATER TREATMENT SYSTEM
- PROBABLY WILL TAKE AT LEAST ANOTHER 6 MONTHS.
- [ (b)(2) ]