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Posted by gustav at 02:01PM, Monday, December 06th, 2004

The Smoking Gun

After weeks of fascist apologists debating what the meaning of "is" is in the Downing Street Memo, the Times of London leaks a memo from July 21, 2002, in which Ministers are urged to help create "the conditions necessary to justify government military action" in Iraq, and a timetable is laid out for the illegal invasion.

From this article in the Times (of London) Online:

The paper, produced by the Cabinet Office on July 21, 2002, is incomplete because the last page is missing. The following is a transcript rather than the original document in order to protect the source.

PERSONAL SECRET UK EYES ONLY




IRAQ: CONDITIONS FOR MILITARY ACTION (A Note by Officials)

Summary

Ministers are invited to:

(1) Note the latest position on US military planning and timescales for possible action.

(2) Agree that the objective of any military action should be a stable and law-abiding Iraq, within present borders, co-operating with the international community, no longer posing a threat to its neighbours or international security, and abiding by its international obligations on WMD.

(3) Agree to engage the US on the need to set military plans within a realistic political strategy, which includes identifying the succession to Saddam Hussein and creating the conditions necessary to justify government military action, which might include an ultimatum for the return of UN weapons inspectors to Iraq. This should include a call from the Prime Minister to President Bush ahead of the briefing of US military plans to the President on 4 August.

...
US military planning unambiguously takes as its objective the removal of Saddam Hussein's regime, followed by elimination if Iraqi WMD. It is however, by no means certain, in the view of UK officials, that one would necessarily follow from the other.

...
14. It is just possible that an ultimatum could be cast in terms which Saddam would reject (because he is unwilling to accept unfettered access) and which would not be regarded as unreasonable by the international community. However, failing that (or an Iraqi attack) we would be most unlikely to achieve a legal base for military action by January 2003.


Sounds to me like the US and Great Britain had pretty definite plans to invade Iraq regardless.
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