This Material was FIRST PUBLISHED by:
COMPASS - Journal of The
COMMUNIST LEAGUE (UK) No. 88a, August 1990.

Then was re-printed by ALLIANCE MARXIST-LENINIST as a part of:
ALLIANCE ISSUE Number 2; "The Gulf War - The USA Imperialists Bid To Recapture World Supremacy";
April 1992; First placed on web October 2001.

Continuation of Alliance Issue Number 2 (For Table of Contents and First Part got : Alliance 2) THE INVASION OF KUWAITCOMPASS
(Journal of the Communist League) No. 88a, August 1990.
    In May 1990 Iraqi President Saddam Hussein accused Kuwait of stealing Iraqi oil from an oilfield on the Iraqi-Kuwait border, for which he demanded compensation of $2.4 billion.
    ('Sunday Times', 5 August 1990; p. 9).

    Then, in July, Saddam accused Kuwait and other Gulf States of deliberately depressing the price of oil and of breaking OPEC quota agreements at a cost to Iraq of $14 billion.
    ('Sunday Times', ibid.; p. 9).

    Kuwait rejected the charges.

    The Iraqi force of 100,000 dwarfed the Kuwaiti army of 20,000 AND OCCUPIED THE COUNTRY WITHIN A FEW HOURS.     Kuwait has an area of 18,000 square miles and a population of 1.7 million, 60% of whom are non-Kuwaitis. The currency is the Kuwaiti dinar.

    A British protectorate from 1899, its boundaries were arbitarily drawn by the British imperialists in 1922. In June 1961, however, Britain recognised the country's independence. Six days later Iraq claimed the territory of Kuwait on the dubious grounds that it had once a part of the same province of the Ottoman Empire as Iraq. Thousands of British troops were sent at once to prevent any annexation of Kuwait by Iraq. In August the British troops were replaced by an Arab League force, and the withdrawal of the British troops was completed by October.

    In September 1963 Iraq received a (Pounds Sterling PS) PS30 million loan from Kuwait, and in October recognised Kuwait's independence:

    The ruler of Kuwait was the Emir, Shaikh Jabir al-Ahmad al-Jabir al-Sabah, who succeeded to the throne in December 1971.

    In August 1976 the Emir dissolved the National Assembly, suspended four articles of the Constitution and imposed restrictions on the press. The National Assembly was not allowed to meet again until March 1981.

    In July 1986 the Emir again dissolved the National Assembly and imposed restrictions on the press, announcing that henceforth he would rule by decree. In August he dissolved the local councils.

    Kuwait's wealth originally came from its oil, but the revenue from this has been invested, mainly abroad, and Kuwait now possesses

held mainly in Britain, Spain and the USA. As a result:     A few crumbs from these immense earnings have been passed to the ordinary people:     Despite this very limited sharing of wealth, the Arab peoples have little sympathy for the fate of the ruling Sabah dynasty in Kuwait:     On 3 August Iraq announced that it would start to withdraw its forces from Kuwait on 5 August, a promise which was greeted with scepticism abroad.

    In fact, a puppet 'Provisional Free Government of Kuwait' was installed in Kuwait by the Iraqi occupiers, Kitwaiti sources claiming that

    A 'popular army' was also set up comprised, according to Kuwaiti sources, of     At the 'request' of this puppet government, on 8 August IRAQ FORMALLY ANNEXED KUWAIT.     On 2 August the United States, Britain and France froze Iraqi and Kuwaiti assets, and the Soviet Union suspended arms deliveries to Iraq.
    ('Financial Times', 3 August 1990; p. 1).

    On 3 August the UN Security Council condemned the Iraqi invasion, and the Soviet Union and the United States issued a joint denunciation.

    On 6 August the UN Security Council called on all member states to impose an economic blockade upon Iraq and occupied Kuwait, except for:

    On 9 August the UN Security Council unanimously declared Iraq's annexation of Kuwait null and void.
    ('Guardian', 10 August 1990; p. 1).     The Gulf regimes are extremely valuable sources of oil, and therefore have always been regarded as of strategic importance to United States imperialism. Since the Middle East regimes ceased to be dependent upon British imperialism (an era which dates from the overthrow of the Iraqi monarchy in 1958), the US imperialists have pursued a double strategy in relation to the regimes in and near to the Gulf area:     The US intervention in the Iraq-Kuwait affair was, thus, not a consequence, as President George Bush claimed, of 'principled US opposition to aggression'. One has only to recall the recent aggressions by the USA in Grenada, Nicaragua, Panama, and Libya -- to say nothing of the connivance of the USA at Israeli aggression over forty years -- to realise that this claim is blatant hypocrisy.
    The real cause of the US opposition to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait was that:     However, US military experts concluded that A MILITARY OPERATION TO RETAKE KUWAIT WOULD BE IMPRACTICABLE:     The US hope, therefore, was that the sanctions approved by the UN Security Council could be pressed to the point where they brought about:     To be effective, however, the cutting off of Iraq from its oil markets required not merely a naval blockade of the Persian Gulf to prevent the passage of tankers carrying Iraqi oil, but the closure of the two pipelines carrying 90% of Iraqi oil:     On 6 August the pipeline through Turkey was shut down by the Iraqi government:     and the United States placed intense pressure upon Saudi Arabia to shut down the other pipeline passing through its territory.     Embracing 70% of the Arabian Peninsula with an area of 849,000 square miles (larger than Belgium, Denmark, France, both Germanies, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Spain combined), Saudi Arabia has a population of 15.4 million. The world's largest exporter of crude oil with the world's largest oil reserves, its oil production 97% of which comes from the state-owned 'Arabian American Oil Co.' (Aramco) in 1980 was 251 million tonnes from 14 oilfields. Its currency is the rial. The capital is Riyadh, with a population of 1.5 million.

    Ruled dictatorially by the old and sick King Fahd ibn Abdul Aziz, who came to the throne in May 1982. Saudi Arabia has no legal political parties and elections are unknown. Its domestic government is dominated by the royal family:

    a royal family which is notorious for its:     Whereas the Iraqi armed forces have a strength of over 1 million, the Saudi armed forces, largely equipped by the USA and Britain, have a strength of only 72,000, and the government has relied for its security on US protection, to maintain which it has pursued a policy of subservience to US imperialism:     On its own Saudi Arabia would have been unable to resist an Iraqi blitzkrieg, since     On 5 August Iraq pledged that it would not invade Saudi Arabia only provided there was no interference in the pipeline through Saudi Arabia, and in these circumstances Saudi Arabia felt unable to accede to US pressure to shut down the pipeline:     In these circumstances, on 7 August, with the agreement of the Saudi government, the US government ordered the immediate despatch of 4,000 paratroopers to Saudi Arabia. Toosmall for serious defensive -- ' much less offensive -- action, this symbolic force was intended to deter Iraq from attacking Saudi Arabia -- and, it was hoped, to encourage that country to block the pipeline through its territory. These US troops were the advance guard of a force intended to reach 50,000:     and to be a multinational force. It was, however:     At the time of writing only the closest allies of the United States have sent ground forces to participate in the US-sponsored intervention force, and these contingents have been purely of a token character.

    Apart from Saudi Arabia, the Arab states have maintained an extremely lukewarm attitude towards the US-sponsored intervention and have refused to participate in it:

    noting that the US interventionist is:     The former British Ambassador to Iraq, Sir John Moberly, writes:     and there was general agreement that the US intervention had increased the prestige of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein among the Arab peoples:     It was in this situation that on 10 August a summit meeting of Arab League was held in Cairo at the invitation of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. The meeting, attended by an Iraqi delegation, was described by King Husein of Jordan as:     In fact, the aim of the pro-US Arab States was to use the Summit to bring about THE DESPATCH OF AN ARAB FORCE TO BACK UP, WHILE REMAINING SEPARATE FROM, THE US INTERVENTION FORCE.
    Thus:     Iraq, Libya and the PLO voted against the resolution, while the other states abstainied or were absent.     IRAQ IS A CAPITALIST DICTATORSHIP (although its capitalism is not monopoly capitalism, not imperialism) AND ITS INVASION OF KUWAIT WAS UNJUST.

    But should military confrontation occur between Iraq and the US-dominated fores of intervention -- which may well occur -- this would not mean that the US forces were waging a just war.

    The UN resolution on the invasion approved only economic sanctions, not military action, against Iraq. But even if, under American pressure, the Security Council were to authorise mititary action, this would not make such a war just, any more than the endorsement. of the Korean War by the Security Council, in the absence of the Soviet Union, made that war just.

    It is impossible for imperialist powers to wage a just war of liberation. Indeed, President Bush has defined one of the US aims as:

    that is, not the liberation of the Kuwaiti people from their reactionary, corrupt, dictatorial rulers but the RE-ESTABLISHMENT OF THEIR RULE.

    Today the principal enemy of the peoples of the world is imperialism, and the justice or injustice of any war depends on whether that war tends to weaken or strengthen world imperialism.
    Marxism-Leninism determines the justice or injustice of any war, not on the basis of who fired tile first shot, but on whether the war effort of each belligerent tends to WEAKEN OR STRENGTHEN WORLD IMPERIALISM.
    AND AN UNJUST WAR ON THE PART OF THE IMPERIALIST STATE (because its war effort tends to strengthen world imperialism).
    Thus, despite the original unjust Iraqi invasion of Kuwait: