American Hellenic Institute


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Statement On Current Developments Regarding Iraq
March 5, 2003 No. 10 (202) 785-8430

Statement On Current Developments Regarding Iraq

U.S. Army Lt. General David D. McKiernan
Dismisses Rebuff by Turkey

Joint Chiefs Head, General Richard B. Myers, says U.S. forces would invade Iraq from the north "with or without" Turkey's aid

American Hellenic Institute (AHI) General Counsel Gene Rossides stated that U.S. officials have made it abundantly clear that the U.S. does not need Turkey in the event of war with Iraq.

On March 3, 2003, Army Lt. Gen. David D. McKiernan, the U.S. ground commander who would head an invasion of Iraq told reporters "he was prepared to attack 'with or without Turkey,' asserting that a full-fledged northern front is not critical to defeating President Saddam Hussein's forces. 'If a decision is made to conduct combat operations, when you put together all the pieces of air, ground, maritime, special operating forces, I will tell you it will be more than a one-direction effort.'" (Wash. Post, March 4, 2003, at A1; col. 5.)

The New York Times reported that on March 4, 2003, General Richard B. Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters "that the Pentagon's war plan for Iraq entailed shocking the Iraqi leadership into submission quickly with an attack 'much, much, much different' from the 43-day Persian Gulf war in 1991. [O]ther military officials have said the plan calls for unleashing 3,000 precision-guided bombs and missiles in the first 48 hours of the campaign."

General Myers also said "that American forces would open a second front from the north against Iraq, with or without Turkey's help. 'There are several options on the table.'" Two of the options referred to in The New York Times article were "dispatching the 101st Airborne Division and its fleet of helicopters north from Kuwait to attack targets in northern Iraq. Another alternative would be to fly or parachute troopers to secure air bases in northern Iraq. Tanks and other heavy equipment could be flown in later." (NYTimes, March 5, 2003, at A1; col. 6.)

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