Jewish World Review Nov. 15 , 2002 / 10 Kislev, 5763

Dan Abrams

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A close reading of Iraq's letter of acceptance makes it clear that Saddam will almost certainly refuse to live up to its terms | Today, Saddam agreed to "deal with the terms of the U.N. resolution to disarm." Everyone is talking about how Saddam has accepted it. But if you actually read the Iraqi letter of acceptance, it's quite clear Saddam will almost certainly refuse to live up to its terms.

First, Iraq denies having "Developed weapons of mass destruction, whether nuclear, chemical or biological as claimed by evil people." Well by December 8, Saddam has to chronicle all of his weapons, and if he continues to deny he has any, it seems almost certain that military force will be the result.

Second, it sure sounds like Saddam is ready for just that. In the letter to the U.N., the minister for foreign affairs says, "The people of Iraq will not choose to live at the price of their dignity, country, freedom or sanctities and they would rather make their lives the price if that was the only way to safeguard what they must safeguard." Safeguarding those weapons could lead to war.

Third, they refer to the American administration as the "gang of evil" and Tony Blair as the "lackey." It's clear they're trying to be bellicose rather than conciliatory.

And finally, Iraq says the terms from the 1991 resolution will be "The final word and reference": A resolution that's far less specific when it comes to the obligations and rights of both the inspectors and Saddam.

So bottom line, don't be fooled. It sure looks like Saddam will continue to defy the will of the international community, and whether you agree with it or not, I think this nation should prepare for war.

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JWR contributor Dan Abrams anchors “The Abrams Report,” Monday through Friday from 6-7 p.m. ET on MSNBC TV. He also covers legal stories for “NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw,” “Today” and “Dateline NBC.” To visit his website, click here. Comment by clicking here.


11/14/02: Al Jazeera: A state-sponsored mouth-piece
11/13/02: Should Moussaoui be sent to a military tribunal?
11/12/02: Should human rights activists complain about the detainees' treatment?

© 2002, MSNBC