The Genie Unleashed:Iraq's Chemical and Biological Weapons Production
Jun 1, 1989
The unrestricted use of chemical weapons during the last stages of the Iran-Iraq war shocked the international community. In a belated response, the world’s industrialized countries, led by the United States, have initiated a campaign to halt the proliferation of chemical and biological weapons. International efforts have concentrated on stopping the transfer of technology and material to Iraq needed to produce chemical weapons. Yet, Iraq has continued and even expanded its programs since the cessation of fighting with Iran in July 1988, despite widespread condemnation of Iraq’s use of chemical weapons against civilians populations.
In this Policy Paper, Seth Carus surveys Iraq’s biological and chemical warfare programs. He advises that Baghdad’s willingness to invest substantial resources in its chemical and biological weapons programs suggests that these programs continue to hold strategic importance for Iraq’s leaders. As a result, existing efforts to constrain Iraqi chemical weapon production through supply controls are increasingly irrelevant. The United States and other concerned partners must develop new responses to meet the emerging Iraqi challenge.