On August 2, 1990, Iraqi troops rolled across the border into
neighboring Kuwait. The invasion prompted outrage and
action from the White House where Iraq's President Saddam
Hussein was reviled as a modern day Hitler, potentially more
dangerous by virtue of his nuclear weapons ambitions.
But Washington's view had not always been so negative....
Iraqgate: Saddam Hussein, U.S. Policy and the Prelude to the Persian Gulf War, 1980-1994 reproduces on microfiche approximately 1,900 documents representing nearly 10,000 pages of rarely-seen documentation from the highest levels of government.
The collection brings together a wealth of materials which trace U.S. policy toward Iraq prior to the Persian Gulf War, as well as U.S. government reactions to revelations about the Banca Nazionale del Lavoro (BNL) scandal and the secret arming of Saddam Hussein's regime. The set also focuses on the economic issues at play in the U.S. relationship with Iraq. Documents are derived from virtually every federal agency involved in U.S.-lraq policy and the BNL affair.
Through systematic document searching, use of the Freedom of Information Act, cultivation of an extensive network of government, media and academic contacts, and computer- based cataloging, the National Security Archive has developed an unmatched collection of primary-source materials.
The result is a completely integrated, comprehensive history of Iraqgate covering topics such as:
The congressional, media and prosecutorial investigations that took place beginning in 1990 produced hundreds of extraordinary items that would not have been released by the originating agencies for many years, if at all. Now, scholars, students and the American public have access to a revealing cross-section of the historical record almost immediately after the actual events.
Among the unique documents in the set are National Security Council and State Department memoranda outlining initiatives intended to increase U.S. influence with Iraq, together with intelligence reports discussing Iraq's chemical weapons use and its attempts to develop a nuclear arsenal.
It would take an individual researcher years of work and a substantial financial commitment to accumulate the resources offered in a collection of this magnitude. This set affords one- stop retrieval for information on events, issues, individuals and organizations concerned with this highly controversial and hotly debated area of recent U.S. policy.
The core of the collection consists of materials created by U.S. government agencies, of which the greatest number originate in the State Department. Only in this truly integrated set can one access documents from all the agencies involved in the Iraqgate affair--the White House; National Security Council; Central Intelligence Agency; Defense Intelligence Agency; the Treasury, Agriculture, and Commerce Departments, and the Federal Reserve Board. Many of these materials were released through official investigations by Congress, including the House Banking Committee.
The collection also contains documents from United Kingdom government agencies, and others specifically describing BNL- Atlanta and its transactions with Iraq.
The National Security Archive prepares extensive printed finding aids for its collections. In-depth indexing offers users remarkable ease and precision of access to every document in the set. The printed Index provides document-level access to subjects, individuals, and organizations and represents a major historical contribution itself. Important transactions within each document are indexed individually using a controlled keyword vocabulary.
The Guide includes an events chronology, glossaries of key individuals and organizations, chronological document catalog, and a bibliography of relevant secondary sources.
Microfiche are arranged chronologically. For ease of use, each document bears a unique accession number to which all indexing is keyed.
Joyce Battle, MA, Middle East Studies, Harvard University; MLS, Columbia University.
Praise for Iraqgate, 1980-1994
"This set is the most comprehensive collection of documentation on recent U.S.-Iraq relations available to the public, providing
invaluable insights into decision-making at the highest levels during the Reagan and Bush administrations.
Combining documents from a wide variety of U.S., British and other sources, this set is an excellent resource for researchers trying to understand a broad range of subjects, from U.S. policy toward the Persian Gulf to the dynamics of international military, technological and economic aid programs."
International economics correspondent of the International Herald Tribune (Paris) and author of Spider's Web: The Secret History of How the White House Illegally Armed Iraq.
Return to national Security Archive Microfiche Sets.