Friday, August 19, 2016

92 When The CIA Tried To Undermine Iraq’s Economy In Failed Plot Against Saddam


At the start of 1992 there were renewed reports that the Bush administration was trying to overthrow Saddam Hussein. Washington’s hopes remained center around a military coup or an uprising by Baath party members against Saddam. (1) In February it was reported that the CIA had been authorized to use $30 million to increase propaganda against Iraq and contact the Iraqi opposition. (2) While neither of those seemed like they would really threaten the regime, in May a more serious covert action was mentioned. The New York Times ran an article on May 27 that the U.S. and other regional countries were smuggling in counterfeit dinars and Americans dollars into Iraq to undermine the economy. (3) United Nations sanctions were already leading to rising inflation, and the CIA was hoping to push it over the edge with the fake currency. That didn’t bring down the government in Baghdad, and the sanctions proved far more devastating to Iraq than any of the plots launched in the U.S.

SOURCES

1. Seib, Gerald, “A Year Later, Goal to Topple Saddam And Formula to Do It Remain the Same,” Wall Street Journal, 2/3/92

2. Los Angeles Times, “CIA Told It Can Spend $30 Million To Topple Saddam,” 2/8/92

3. Ibrahim, Youssef, “U.S. pours bogus cash into Iraq?” New York Times, 5/27/92

SOURCES

Church, George, “Hints of a new U.S. effort to get rid of the Iraqi leader seem to be aimed more at American voters than at Baghdad. Good thing too: it’s an idea likely to fail – and to raise havoc even if it succeeded,” Time, 2/3/92

Ibrahim, Youssef, “U.S. pours bogus cash into Iraq?” New York Times, 5/27/92

Los Angeles Times, “CIA Told It Can Spend $30 Million To Topple Saddam,” 2/8/92

Seib, Gerald, “A Year Later, Goal to Topple Saddam And Formula to Do It Remain the Same,” Wall Street Journal, 2/3/92

Tyler, Patrick, “CIA chief in Mideast – Saddam targeted?” New York Times, 2/7/92

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