Ayad Allawi

From SourceWatch
Jump to: navigation, search

Dr. Ayad Allawi (Iyad Allawi) was "unanimously nominated" to be Iraq's "interim prime minister" by "Iraq's U.S.-appointed" Iraqi Governing Council on Friday, May 28, 2004. Allawi is a Shiite Muslim politician and former exile "whose party was supported by the CIA". [1] [2]

Background

Ayad Alawi "was born in Baghdad in 1946 into a wealthy Shiite family of prominent business leaders." As a "young man", Allawi joined the Baath Party after it "gained control of Iraq" and "organized party meetings at his medical school. He left Baghdad for advanced medical studies in London in 1971, eventually becoming a neurologist." It is reported that "Dr. Alawi occasionally treated young Saddam Hussein for minor ailments." [3] [4]

Allawi, before his 1976 resignation from the Baath Party, "was in charge of all Baath Party organizations in Europe." Following his resignation, "Hussein tried to lure him back with threats and bribes. When he refused and subsequently struck up a relationship with the British intelligence service (MI6), he was reportedly placed on a liquidation list by Hussein." [5] [6]

"Iraqi secret police were sent to assassinate Allawi in London in 1978, bursting into his bedroom and hacking him with an ax. He suffered serious injuries and spent nearly a year in a hospital. He continues to walk with a limp because of injuries to his leg suffered in the attack." [7]

The attack on his life helped persuade Allawi in 1979 to begin "organizing former Baathists in exile, like himself. ... And after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990, suddenly Mr. Alawi and his organization were in great demand. Financial support flowed in from Britain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and, eventually, the CIA. That year he founded the Iraqi National Accord." [8]

"After shuttling between Kurdish areas, Syria and Jordan, Allawi, who has good ties with Washington, settled in London. INA is made up mostly of defectors from the military and intelligence services, and belongs to the Group of Four." [9] [10]

"As leader of the INA, [Allawi] was embraced by Britain and the United States. In 1996, he worked with the CIA to plot a coup that was to involve Iraqi army generals toppling Hussein. But the Iraqi leader penetrated the plot and arrested and executed many of its operatives." [11] [12]

"Allawi returned to Baghdad shortly after Hussein's government fell in April 2003, running his party from an abandoned Baath Party office. Many members of his party are former military officers, and he has advocated a greater role for former soldiers in the country's new security services." [13]

A "qualified medical doctor," Dr. Allawi has "no army or intelligence background." Allawi claims the "support of hundreds of activists abroad and thousands of disillusioned government and party officials inside Iraq." [14] [15]

Setting the Stage for Rule

According to the February 14, 2004, edition of The Economist:

"The chairman of the council's security committee, Ayad Allawi, has begun creating a new version of the feared secret police. Iraq may well need a counter-insurgency force, but Mr Allawi's rivals accuse him of recruiting former torturers to man a new apparatus of oppression."

The Boston Globe reported on May 14, 2004, that

"Ali Allawi ... Iraq's new interim defense minister ... a technocrat who is related to pro-American exile leaders Ayad Allawi of the Iraqi National Accord and Ahmed Chalabi of the Iraqi National Congress, has won a measure of respect from Iraqis in his former job as trade minister.
"Now that he is minister of defense, however, and in charge of security, the issue most important to Iraqis, he'll have to walk a fine line between working with the occupying authority and advocating for autonomous Iraqi interests."


Allawi "Intelligence" Reports

Saddam "Connected" to Al Qaeda

"Saddam had ordered Atta training," according to Allawi, identified as "a member of Iraq's seven-man presidential committee" in the December 15, 2003, The Indian Express.

A handwritten memo dated July 1, 2001, that was published "exclusively" in the December 14, 2003, London Daily Telegraph "provides a short resume of a three-day 'work programme'" which alleged September 11, 2001 "mastermind" Mohammad Atta "had undertaken at [Palestinian terrorist] Abu Nidal's base in Baghdad."

"The details of Atta's visit are contained in [the] secret memo, written to Hussein by the former head of Iraqi intelligence service Tahir Jalil Habbush Al-Tikriti, it said." A media report stated that Atta's training had been "at the instance of deposed Iraqi President Saddam Hussein."

"Although Iraqi officials refused to disclose how and where they had obtained the document, Ayad Allawi, a member of Iraq's ruling seven-man presidential committee, said the document was genuine.

'We are uncovering evidence all the time of Saddam's involvement with Al Qaeda,' Allawi said. 'But this is the most compelling piece of evidence that we have found so far. It shows that not only did Saddam have contacts with Al Qaeda, he had contact with those responsible for the September 11 attacks.'"

However, Joe Conason wrote in Salon on December 18, 2003: [16]

"Among those currently cooperating in this political jihad are members of the Iraqi Governing Council, journalists at London's right-wing Daily Telegraph, and the eminently respectable William Safire of the New York Times. Last Sunday, the Telegraph blared a front-page story claiming that a newly discovered document memo proves Iraqi intelligence assisted 9/11 mastermind Mohammed Atta, in Baghdad, during the summer of 2001. The Telegraph identified the source who provided the memo as Dr. Ayad Allawi, a member of the Iraqi Governing Council.
"The very next day, Safire promoted the Telegraph's 'scoop' in an Op-Ed column on the capture of Saddam. As a fervent believer in the covert connection between Saddam and Osama bin Laden, he must have been elated by this fresh documentation of his theory. The Times columnist lent further plausibility to the story by identifying Allawi as 'an Iraqi leader long considered reliable by intelligence agencies.'"
"Someday, plausible proof may emerge that implicates Saddam in al-Qaida's crimes, but this memo won't quite do. Newsweek's Mark Hosenball and Michael Isikoff report that the document provided by Allawi is almost certainly fraudulent (like those papers concerning Iraq's purchases of uranium yellowcake from Niger). As Hosenball and Isikoff explain:
"'The new document, supposedly written by the chief of the Iraqi intelligence service ... doesn't say exactly when Atta was supposed to have actually flown to Baghdad. But the memo is dated July 1, 2001, and [Telegraph reporter Con] Coughlin himself places the trip as the summer of 2001.
"'The problem with this, say U.S. law enforcement officials, is that the FBI has compiled a highly detailed time line for Atta's movements throughout the spring and summer of 2001 based on a mountain of documentary evidence, including airline records, ATM withdrawals and hotel receipts. Those records show Atta crisscrossing the United States during this period -- making only one overseas trip, an 11-day visit to Spain that didn't begin until six days after the date of the Iraqi memo.'"

Niger Uranium

"The second part of the memo, which is headed 'Niger Shipment', contains a report about an unspecified shipment -- believed to be uranium -- that it says has been transported to Iraq via Libya and Syria." [17]

WMD in "45 Minutes"

Allawi "is the person through whom the controversial claim was channelled that Iraqi weapons of mass destruction could be operational in 45 minutes." [18]

Saddam Stashed Billions

The International Herald Tribune reported on December 30, 2003, that Allawi told "two London-based Arab newspapers he had information that Saddam Hussein had informed his interrogators of stashing billions of dollars in banks around the world and that Saddam was providing interrogators with the names of those who control the funds."

Allawi "told the newspapers Al Hayat and Asharq Al Awsat that the Governing Council estimated that Saddam had siphoned off $40 billion during his years in power and that it was searching banks in Switzerland, Japan, Germany and other countries for the money.

"But a U.S. official dismissed as 'completely wrong' the idea that Saddam had secreted away so much money or had provided information about it to his interrogators."

Allawi becomes Iraq's interim Prime Minister

The outgoing Iraqi Governing Council (IGC) - a creation of the U.S. - announced Allawi's appointment as interim Prime Minister on May 29, 2004. Allawi's appointment was viewed as a move to pre-empt moves by the U.N and U.S. to draft someone seen as independent of the occupation forces. writes [19] [20]

According to the Washington Post, Allawi was regarded by some U.S. officials as a compromise candidate. "Although he is secular, he reportedly has the support of the country's top Shiite cleric (Grand Ayatollah al-Sistani) [which is key because Shiites make up a majority of the population], and he has served as the Governing Council's point man on security issues. He also has welcomed Sunni Muslims and ethnic Kurds into his political organization and promoted reconciliation with former members of Saddam Hussein's Baath Party, a group he supported more than 30 years ago," according to Rajiv Chandrasekaran in the May 29, 2004, Washington Post. [21]

Since the handover of power to Allawi in late June, he has announced that a new internal intelligence agency would be created to undermine those behind the string of attacks on U.S and Iraqi forces. "We are determined to bring down all the hurdles that stand in the way of our democracy," Allawi told journalists announcing the new agency. [22]

In mid-July, the Bagdad correspondent for the Sydney Morning Herald, Paul McGeogh, reported that two eye-witnesses stated that the week prior to the handover of power that Allawi had drawn a pistol and executed up to six people detained for suspected attacks on Iraqi and U.S forces. Allawi's office has denied that he had visited the Al-Amariyah security centre in Bagdad's suburbs or that he carried a gun. U.S Ambassador to Iraq, John Negroponte, dismissed the claims without investigating them. [23]

After the statements by the witnesses, McGeogh wrote of Allawi that his "every response to the Iraq mess is that of a hard man: he threatens martial law; he warns he might shut down sections of the media; he suggests he might delay elections. His Justice Minister is bringing back the death penalty; his Defence Minister warns he'll chop off insurgents' hands and heads." [24]

"He tells people he's a 'tough guy'. And friends and enemies alike resort to the same page of the thesaurus when they talk about him: 'willing to be ruthless,' says one; 'potential for brutality,' says another; 'muscular law enforcement comes naturally to him,' concludes a third Iraqi voice," McGeogh wrote.

SourceWatch Resources

External links