|Kuwait Way of Life|
|Iraq Invasion & POWs|
With the first light of dawn on 2 August 1990, Kuwait awoke to the sounds of Iraqi tanks, armored cars and artillery storming across its borders, shelling its peaceful homes and sowing destruction in its territory. The excuse given for this invasion was an allegation that Kuwait, together with the United Arab Emirates, had swamped the world market with oil, causing a fall in prices and losing Iraq billions of dollars. In fact the quotas of Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates in international production at that time, and before and after that (2-7% of total daily world output), were not enough to cause a glut in the world market. Price factors are determined not only by supply but also by demand, in which many factors are involved including economic activity in the advanced countries of the world.
As soon as they had seized the territory of the State of Kuwait, the Iraqi authorities hastily announced its annexation to Iraq, claiming it was one of Iraqfs 19 provinces. this proved that the story about swamping world oil markets was not a justification for the invasion, which was caused by latent historical designs on the part of successive regimes in Iraq since Kuwait became independent in 1961.
Most countries in the world rejected the criminal Iraqi aggression against an independent state which was a member of the United Nations, the Organization of the Islamic Conference, the League of Arab States, the Arab Gulf States Co-operation Council and many other international and regional organizations. States individually and collectively, and regional and international organizations, demanded that the Iraqi regime withdraw its forces from Kuwait to enable Kuwaitis and their legitimate government to return to their country. Thousands of Kuwaitis had taken refuge abroad from the lethal Iraqi war machine which did not differentiate between military and civilians, between the elderly, small children and young people, particularly after failing to create a fifth column among Kuwaitis to support Iraq against Kuwaiti legitimacy. The heads of Arab and non-Arab states, the then United Nations Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar, and senior officials from all continents tried to persuade Iraqi President Saddam Hussein to withdraw his forces from Kuwait and restore the status quo ante before 2 August 1990, but to no avail.
During that time, the UN Security Council passed a number of resolutions, beginning with Resolution No. 660 on 2 August 1990, all of which demanded an end to the aggression against Kuwait, the withdrawal of the invading forces, the preservation of Kuwaiti material and other properties, maintenance of Kuwaitfs demographic character, and the cessation of all acts of killing, expulsion and destruction. When Iraq did not respond to any of the resolutions passed under Chapter Seven of the UN Charter, which gives them binding force, , the Council adopted Resolution 678 authorizing the liberation of Kuwait by all means. This gave the 32-country international alliance the right to use force to liberate Kuwait. The alliance launched an air war beginning on 17 January 1991, and followed this up with a land war on 24 February. This ended with the announcement of the liberation of Kuwait on 26 February 1991 after the invading forces had been routed and forced to flee from Kuwaiti territory. Between Resolution No. 660 and Resolution No. 1284 adopted by the Security Council on 19 December 1999, some fifty resolutions were adopted, all of them based on Chapter Seven of the UN Charter, in connection with the aggression against the State of Kuwait and dealing with its consequences, foremost of which is the prisoners of war and hostages, for which the UN Secretary-General has recently appointed a general co-ordinator to follow up their case. These resolutions are also concerned with the question of ending Iraqfs weapons of mass destruction, continued monitoring of its armament so that it does not develop its programs in future, and burying its aggressive intentions from the start.
When the Kuwaiti administration returned to its country after the liberation was complete, it drew up and implemented a comprehensive plan for the reconstruction of Kuwait, most of which had been destroyed, its main installations put out of action and its infrastructure almost paralyzed. It succeeded in carrying out a reconstruction plan costing nearly $70 billion, and celebrated it together with its celebration for the extinguishing of the last oil well fire caused by the Iraqis before their defeat. Kuwait also had to rid its land and sea of tens of millions of mines which had been planted and had caused, and are still causing, hundreds of innocent casualties. The environment on land is still suffering the effects of oil pollution resulting from the Iraqi invaders pumping it over the land and setting fire to it when the international alliance began the war to liberate Kuwait.
In an attempt to end Iraqfs designs on the territory of Kuwait and deny it any excuses for aggression against or threats to Kuwait, The Security Council on 20 May 1993 formed an international committee to demarcate the Kuwait-Iraq border. It completed its work on 27 June when the Security Council passed its Resolution No. 833 on this. Iraq ratified the border demarcation between the two countries, and deposited its ratification with the United Nations. But this has not prevented its leaders from threatening Kuwait from time to time and alleging that the demarcation wronged Iraq. These are indications that the regime in Baghdad is unable to harmonize itself with the international community and its resolutions, has no desire for regional and international peace, and cannot be trusted in the final analysis. This regimefs denial of the existence of more than 600 prisoners and hostages, both Kuwaiti and from other nationalities, although more than nine years have passed since its forces were expelled from Kuwait, is the strongest proof of its insistence on going against the will of the international community which is greatly concerned with human rights, including the right to life and liberty. The Security Council, the authority concerned with stability in the world, is fully aware of this. Accordingly it passed its binding Resolution No. 1284, demanding the release of all prisoners held by Iraq and asking the UN Secretary-General to present regular reports on the development of this case, which is causing much sorrow and suffering to hundreds of families and thousands of individuals in Kuwait and abroad. For many years there has been an international committee chaired by the Red Cross and with the participation of Kuwait, Iraq and other countries to deal with this question. But Iraq frequently boycotts its meetings, and if it attends it does not co-operate with it or present any information.