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2001 Ron Paul Chapter 110
19 December 2001
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Congressional Record (Page H10424) Cached
2001 Ron Paul 110:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
2001 Ron Paul 110:2
Mr. Speaker, the emphasis in this H.J. resolution is that resolutions have been passed, and one in particular, a U.N. resolution against Iraq, must be enforced. I made the point earlier that there are many resolutions that are not enforced, so this one is special and has to be enforced; and the assumption is that it is the responsibility of the United States to do the enforcing.
2001 Ron Paul 110:3
Everybody knows that I am not too keen on the United Nations, but I am not too keen on the idea that we can use the United Nations as we please. Sometimes we follow the rules, and sometimes we do not. I think if we are participating, the argument should be that we should follow the rules.
2001 Ron Paul 110:4
There is no U.N. authority for us to use force against Saddam Hussein without a new U.N. resolution. It would be very difficult to legally mount another invasion of Iraq right now without a U.N. resolution. It would not go along with UN rules.
2001 Ron Paul 110:5
The other question I have about the rule of law and trying to follow the rules of the United Nations would be: Where have we gotten the authority to enforce the no-fly zones? The no-fly zones are really a contention in the Middle East, and have been a contention for a long time, because that, in combination with the embargoes and the sanctions against the Iraqi people is what the Arabs believe to be so detrimental to the children who have died in Iraq.
2001 Ron Paul 110:6
Whether Members agree with that or not, or they want to put all the blame on Saddam Hussein, is beside the point. Millions if not billions of Muslims and Iraqis happen to wonder about that policy: Where did we get the authority to continue bombing for now going on 12 years?
2001 Ron Paul 110:7
This legislation says that we know exactly what is going on in Iraq. I pointed out that the International Atomic Energy Agency has been in Iraq this year and found out that there is no evidence of nuclear weapons being built.
2001 Ron Paul 110:8
But there is one gentleman who has been in Iraq many times under the U.N., as a U.N. inspector, Scott Ritter. He has been there 30 times. Probably even the best junketeer in Congress I will bet has not been over there 30 times, but he has been there 30 times inspecting.
2001 Ron Paul 110:9
He was on a television interview the other day, and had an opinion as to what is going on in Iraq. I do not think Members can jump up and say Scott Ritter is not a true American, that he is not a true internationalist, that he does not know what he is talking about. But this is what he said on television when they asked about whether or not he thought Saddam Hussein and Iraq was a threat to our national security.
2001 Ron Paul 110:10
He said, In terms of military threat, absolutely nothing. His military was devastated in 1991 in Operation Desert Storm, and Iraq has not had the ability to reconstitute itself in terms of weapons of mass destruction. We know that we achieved a 90 to 95 percent level of disarmament. Diplomatically, politically, Saddam is a little bit of a threat. In terms of a real national security threat to the United States, no, none.
2001 Ron Paul 110:11
Because he is a little bit of a political and a diplomatic threat, we are making these plans to pursue war or in reality continue the war because the Persian Gulf war has not really ended.
2001 Ron Paul 110:12
So once again, I ask my colleagues who are going to be voting on this shortly to think about it. If it is unnecessary and does not have any effect, why bring it to the floor? There would be no purpose. If Hussein is aligned with the terrorists, the President already has authority to do something about it. So what really is the reason for this, especially when it was first announced that this would be an act of aggression, which is really what they feel in their hearts, in their minds, what they want this to be? It has been toned down a little bit. But this resolution is a support for expanding the war and continuing what has been going on for 12 years.
2001 Ron Paul 110:13
Quite frankly, I think there is a better diplomatic way to handle things. I think it is a shame that our Secretary of State has not been given more authority to have his way on this issue, rather than being overruled by those and encouraged by many Members here in the Congress who want to prepare for war against Iraq, because of this fantastic success in Afghanistan, a country, probably the poorest country in the world that did not even have an airplane; and now, because of this tremendous success, we are ready to take on the next country.
2001 Ron Paul 110:14
But one thing that we have to realize is that there is a great chance, and there is some evidence, and I may get a chance to quote this later, that China may well have been involved. Now, the gentleman from California said, OK, so let us go after China. Everyone knows we are not going to go after China in the same manner we are planning to go after Iraq.
2001 Ron Paul 110:15
We are going into Iraq for other reasons, other than reasons of national security. That is my firm belief. It has a lot to do with the announcement when our government propagandized to go to war in the Persian Gulf War and it was to go to defend our oil. I still believe that is a major motivation that directs our foreign policy in the Middle East.
2001 Ron Paul 110:16
Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.