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File: 950825_001mc_90.txt
Page: 90
Total Pages: 1


Filename:001mc.90
1990
Subject: Iraqi CW and BW

 Iraq has developed a growing capability to produce its own CW 
munitions and a wide arsenal of weapons to employ them. Since 
1987, the Soviet Union and other East European countries have 
reduced their support in this area. The Chemical agents 
available to Iraq are best suited for defensive operations, 
although they have been used in the offensive role. The Iraqis 
used chemicals during several of their offensive operations in 
1988, however, prior to 1988 Iraq used chemicals in defensive 
operations. The Iraqis mixed CW with conventional fire to stop 
Iranian massed infantry assaults and reportedly used chemical 
agents during preparatory artillery fire in an attack against 
Iranian positions. Also, Iraq's tactics call for the use of 
more than one agent at a time. There are at least three known 
types of tactics employed by Iraq; assault breaker, rear area 
disruptive, and front line disruptive.

 Iraq possesses the largest chemical weapons capability in the 
entire Middle East and has the capacity to increase its 
stockpile significantly in the future. This has been 
accomplished despite western diplomatic pressure and economic 
sanctions against acquisition of requisite materials. Based on 
U. S. modeling of Iraq's production facilities, Iraq is 
producing or capable of producing sulfur mustard at an 
estimated rate of up to 150 tonnes per month, and sarin and 
tabun at 20 tonnes and five to ten tonnes per month 
respectively. Production of GF has not been estimated but 
should be similar to that of sarin. More recently, the Iraqis 
may be entering into the production of the nerve agent VX, but 
quantities cannot be estimated. It is estimated that the 
Iraqis now have as much as 1,000 tonnes of agent (of all 
types) in their stockpile. Iraq may be investigating the use 
of other agents, including the psychochemicals BZ and EA3443.

 Iraq has established a biological warfare program which could 
provide them with an operational capability in the near term. 
The current BW capability consists of both infectious and 
toxin agents. The infectious agents include bacillus, 
anthraces, vibrio cholerae, clostridium perfringens, botulinum 
toxin and staphylococcai enterotoxin. The Iraqi BW program is 
believed to be supported at the highest level of the 
government, with President Saddam Husayn having direct








responsibility for all key policy issues related to the BW 
program. No specific BW delivery systems have been identified, 
although artillery shells and aerosol generating machines 
(noted in the Iraqi inventory) could be used in the field to 
effectively generate and disperse airborne BW agents. The 
Iraqi BW program is at the scale-up production stage. The 
operating concepts of development and the rate of evolution of 
the Iraqi BW program appear to parallel those of its CW 
program. The time between scale-up and first use of a CW agent 
by Iraq was approximately three to four years. However, the 
time necessary for BW research, development, and acquisition 
will likely be less. The Armed Forces Medical Intelligence 
Center, Fort Detrick, MD has assessed that if the Iran-lraq 
war had lasted another year, BW weapons would have been 
employed by Iraq.
 



 

 



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