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Iraq pulls back from Jordanian border

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  • alm@znet.com
    Ha aretz: Iraq pulls back from Jordanian border By Amir Oren Ha aretz Correspondent Ha aretz 1 November 2000 The armored units that have been stationed in
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 1, 2000
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      Ha'aretz: Iraq pulls back from Jordanian border

      By Amir Oren Ha'aretz Correspondent Ha'aretz 1 November 2000

      The armored units that have been stationed in western Iraq for the last
      month in a show of force against Israel are in the process of being
      dismantled and moved to other, more distant locations, according to
      assessments by Israeli intelligence sources.

      The Iraqi force, led by the Republican Guard's crack Hammurabi unit, was
      never intended to be deployed against Israel, the intelligence sources said.
      Its appearance was merely an expression of Iraq's willingness to participate
      in a general Arab-Israeli war should one be declared. Since the chances of
      such a war being launched have lessened following the Arab summit's
      decisions in Cairo 10 days ago, the force has no further purpose in western
      Iraq.

      Even prior to the recent indications of the force's imminent redeployment,
      military intelligence had considered it unlikely that Saddam Hussein would
      send ground forces against Israel. A more likely scenario, the Israel
      Defense Forces said, was an air attack against Israel's nuclear reactor in
      Dimona. Dimona was the only city besides Tel Aviv and Haifa to be targeted
      by Saddam during the Gulf War in 1991. The air force was therefore on the
      alert last month to shoot down Iraqi planes should such an attack occur.

      Meanwhile, a report from reliable Western sources that reached Jerusalem
      this week expressed concern about the lack of information on the state of
      Iraq's biological weapons program. Biological weapons are the "black hole"
      of Western knowledge of Iraq, the report said.
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