Friday, November 26, 2004

Uday and Qusay were denied entry into Syria

Saddam's sons were denied entry into Syria, according to a story in al-Hayat that has been summarized in the Independent Press.

Uday and Qusay, who were killed in Mosul in July 2003, were denied entry into Syria while trying to escape from the United States Army, the Arabic daily Al-Hayat newspaper reported on Friday. The paper quoted the wife of one of their bodyguards who claimed that her husband was very close to the Hussein family."Saddam loved him to a high extent. He could tell him all his secrets," she said in an interview to the newspaper. The wife, who didn't want to have her name published, said that her husband had been detained one month before the two brothers were killed. 'Someone informed the US forces about my husband.'

According to Al-Hayat, the bodyguard proposed to cross the border into Syria while US forces were searching for Saddam and his two sons. The bodyguard's wife said that she was also in the convoy and that they received help from some Syrian fighters and Saddam sympathisers, but that the Syrian authorities asked the convoy to return to Iraq."Someone informed the US forces about my husband and he was arrested one day after coming back from a visit to Syria," the woman said.

The US troops found two forged passports at her place so they found out about the attempt to get into Syria. Saddam's sons were killed by US troops one month later. "My husband was accused of giving information on Saddam later, but my husband can never be a traitor," the wife said. "The best proof is that Saddam was arrested eight months after my husband's arrest."

This story is of interest because it indicates that Syria quite early on was anxious not to be caught helping the Iraq regime. One can only remark with surprise that that no Iraqi has come forward to give details of the alleged transfer of Iraq's chemical weapons to Syria.

This story is perennial favorite of unnamed "Pentagon sources." Actually Undersecretary of State Bolton has taken credit for it several times. But it seems to have been first concocted by Nizar Nayouf. (See this article about Nayouf's claim of evidence) So far no one else has corroborated the story. Indeed, it is curious that various newspapers still have the temerity to print it even though hundreds of Iraqis would have had to know about it and assisted in their transfer. US intelligence is clearly in a position now to nail down this story, or at least dispose of it once and for all. I wonder why it hasn't.


At 11/29/2004 01:26:00 PM, Blogger SoonerGrunt said...

US intelligence is clearly in a position now to nail down this story, or at least dispose of it once and for all. I wonder why it hasn't. I believe that there are several reasons, depending on who, exactly is or isn't making the claim. For the neoconservatives within US Intelligence, to do so would undermine any case for future invasion of Syria. For the realists, Syria's occasional support like the intel sharing that supposedly went on in the wake of 9/11, and the hope for future support or relations would be jeapordized by the open linkage of Syria with the US.

At 8/17/2009 11:16:00 AM, Blogger Mark E. said...

This is, was, a heck of a story. Nice post.

It's interesting that some are saying the "neocons" don't want relations with Syria when in fact a source I've talked to who most would consider part of the "neocon" group says they FAVORED working with Syria and the CIA opposed it.


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