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Posted by on Dec 9, 2008 in At TMV | 2 comments

Iraq War—A Dutch Connection?

Apparently, it wasn’t only the U.S. government that kept information/intelligence on Iraq from lawmakers and from the people before the attack on that country.

A Dutch commentator describes in the NRC Handelsblad how The Netherlands was sucked into the Iraq war, even thought the Dutch intelligence agencies had better information than the U.S. on Iraq’s WMDs:

The Balkenende government has been constantly extremely frugal when it comes to providing Parliament with intelligence about national war policy. We still do not know how we ended up getting involved in the attack on Iraq. Saddam Hussein did not want to obey Security Council Resolution 1441 and thus had to be punished. Because of that, we supported the United States, while the U.N. weapons inspections led by Hans Blix were making progress and our MIVD [Dutch Military Intelligence and Security Service] and AIVD [Dutch General Intelligence and Security Service] had doubts as to whether Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. In an interview with ABC Television, President Bush has now expressed his regret. The U.S. intelligence agencies had made a mistake. The Dutch apparently not, or a lesser one. Bush would have been better off to listen to our MIVD. Isn’t it high time to award our investigators their deserved honor?

The Dutch are now demanding answers to questions about how and why The Netherlands got involved in Iraq.

The commentator, H. J. Hofland, is concerned that even today the Dutch government is keeping intelligence on the Afghanistan conflict from Parliament, and that the Netherlands will again be sucked into a wider conflict in Afghanistan, and—in view of the Mumbai attack—into an even wider conflict in the subcontinent.

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  • StockBoySF

    “The Dutch are now demanding answers to questions about how and why The Netherlands got involved in Iraq.”

    Not surprising and more countries will face this question. Those countries that are not as open as the Dutch will handle it quietly and probably ignore it. Other and more advanced countries will need to do their own soul-searching.

    As far as the US…. Those people who got us into this mess will now deflect attention by attacking Obama, while those of us who really do want to know the full story so history can be recorded properly will be too busy defending Obama. If the religious right were truly religious and wanted to live up to the ideals they profess to follow they would turn their anger to demanding why the US trampled basic human rights, invaded a country without provocation (or threat) and trashed our nation’s sacrosanct document- the US Constitution. There will be some assessment under Obama, but not the national outcry that these issues demand.

    Good for the Dutch, I’ve always thought they were reasonable.

  • DdW


    Thanks for the comments. I’ll be posting another piece soon on how the Dutch government (Blankenende) refuses to admit Iraq war mistakes…even after Bush effectively did so a a few days ago


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