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Commentary; A 'Big Cat' With Nothing to Lose; Leaving Hussein no hope will trigger his worst weapons, U.S. envoy in historic '90 meeting warns
[HOME EDITION]
Los Angeles Times - Los Angeles, Calif.
Author: Wilson, Joseph C
Date: Feb 6, 2003
Start Page: B.17
Section: California Metro; Part B; Editorial Pages Desk
Abstract (Document Summary)

When he released the women and children hostages, [Saddam Hussein] initially threatened to keep dual Kuwaiti-American citizens. I told his underling that unless all Americans were put on the evacuation flight within half an hour, I would inform the American TV networks that Hussein had again reneged on his promises and was toying with the lives of children.

He acts as if he expects the people around him to die for him, but he has long known that every terrorist act, and particularly a sophisticated one, raises the question of his involvement and invites blame. He has nothing to gain and everything to lose. In his mind he is Iraq, Iraq is Hussein, and as long as he survives, Iraq survives.

After then-Secretary of State Jim Baker made it clear to [Tarik Aziz] on the eve of the Gulf War that the United States would destroy Iraq if weapons of mass destruction were used, Hussein did not use them. He is not stupid, and for him living is better than dying in vain.

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