Investigation publishes their report on Dutch participation in Iraq War alongside Bush
Content and conclusions to follow asap.
1. U.N. resolution not sufficient for Iraq invasion
- Dutch military support in pre-war planning
- FM Jaap de Hoop Scheffer (JdHS) gave early support to President Bush
- Dutch parliament not fully informed by cabinet ministers
- Dutch military intelligence had a more profound view of WMDs in Iraq
- Dutch military not involved in invasion, limited to political support
- US official request to particpate in pre-war planning kept secret by JdHS
- Political decision has no link to appointment JdHS as SG NATO
The Hague, 12 January 2010
Summary of conclusions of the Committee of Inquiry on Iraq
49 Conclusions of commission report (English)
A leaked document to NRC Handelsblad shows an internal Legal advice to Minister Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, dated 29 April 2003, with arguments there is no legality for Iraq invasion.
(RNW) – Did Dutch PM Jan Peter Balkenende misinform parliament about the Iraq war? That is the unspoken question hovering over the Davids Committee inquiry whose report was published on Tuesday. The independent committee was asked by the PM to investigate the political process which resulted in the Netherlands’ joining George W. Bush’s “coalition of the willing”.
Dutch politics at the time was self-centred and showed little awareness of the outside world, committee chairman Willibrord Davids said when he presented his report. Hardly any thought was given to what should happen once the invasion had taken place and Saddam Hussein’s regime had been toppled.
The Netherlands lent explicit “political support” to the Anglo-American invasion of Iraq in 2003, while rejecting any form of military involvement. Mr Balkenende, who was caretaker prime minister at the time, argued that Saddam Hussein had consistently flouted UN resolutions and possessed weapons of mass destruction. The prime minister later said he had based his decision to join the war on a letter by his British counterpart Tony Blair, “for his eyes only”. Mr Blair’s letter apparently convinced Mr Balkenende that Saddam Hussein was able to hit Europe with weapons of mass destruction at short notice.
The Davids committee was not allowed to publish the contents of the letter in its report.
(BBC News) – A Dutch inquiry into the Iraq war says that military action was not justified by UN resolutions on Iraq. The Committee of Inquiry on Iraq said security council resolutions did not “constitute a mandate for… intervention in 2003”.
The inquiry was launched after foreign ministry memos were leaked that cast doubt on the legal basis for the war.
The Netherlands gave political support to the 2003 invasion of Iraq, but has denied having any military role.