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I. US PLANS FOR IRAQI OPPOSITION, REUTERS, JUN 17 II. STATE DEPT LIST OF IRAQI OPPOSITION GROUPS III. US PLANS FOR IRAQI OPPOSITION, THE INDEPENDENT, JUN 16 Sources in the Iraqi opposition report that according to Iyad Alawi, head of the Iraqi National Accord, CIA Director, George Tenet, in a recent visit to London, told UK intelligence that they should not listen to what Amb. Butler is saying about the status of Iraq's proscribed weapons programs. The US does not approve of what he is saying and the US will continue to confront Saddam. Yesterday, as Reuters reported, Asst Sec State for Near Eastern Affairs, Martin Indyk, said there were 73 Iraqi opposition groups outside of Iraq and the administration "will be launching an effort to help them organise and coordinate their case against Saddam Hussein." The US effort would go forward, "in a visible and effective way," and would focus on Saddam's "brutality and his war crimes." As Indyk explained, the Iraqi opposition groups "represent an alternative vision for Iraq to Saddam Hussein that is democratic in terms of its aspirations. . . . I don't place a high probability on their ability to overthrow Saddam but it's important they demonstrate there is a different way of life for the Iraqi people." The legislation authorizing funding for the Iraqi opposition required the State Dept to report to Congress on its plans. It included the language, "The managers expect that a significant portion of the support for the democratic opposition should go to the Iraqi National Congress, a group that has demonstrated the capacity to effectively challenge the Saddam Hussein regime with representation from Sunni, Shia, and Kurdish elements of Iraq." The administration, which does not want to adopt a policy whose aim is Saddam's overthrow [see "Iraq News," June 16], gave Congress a list of 82 Iraqi opposition groups, presumably the source of the figure used by Indyk. The list follows below, annotated by a former USG official. Some 44 of the "groups" were unknown or had ceased to exist. Seven were religious, educational & etc. associations. The USG official concluded, "The overwhelming majority of these groups appear not to be valid recipients of US assistance. Many have political drawbacks (they are heavily influenced by Tehran or Damascus, or they purport to be communists), some are strongly suspected of having clandestine ties to Baghdad, and many are not opposition groups, or they no longer exist. By providing this list, DOS has underscored the fact that there are relatively few opposition groups who are actually working to bring democracy to Iraq." Indeed, the administration, in its effort to spend the money authorized by Congress; maintain a modicum of credibility; but avoid providing support to the INC, has even turned to the Tehran-based Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq [SCIRI]. In Feb, SCIRI chief, Mohammad Bakr al-Hakim visited Kuwait, where al-Hakim's political advisor met US embassy officials and the CIA station chief, at Kuwaiti urging. The administration subsequently decided it wanted to invite Hakim to Washington. In Mar, it asked The Washington Institute for Near East Policy to invite Hakim to speak there. But Hakim refused, saying he would come to Washington only if he could meet with Clinton. In May, Deputy Asst Sec State for Near East Affairs, David Welch, met in London with Hakim's representative there, Hamid Bayati. And, as The Independent reported, Bayati visited Washington last week for meetings with US officials. ........................ II. STATE DEPT LIST OF IRAQI OPPOSITION GROUPS Memo, June 10, 1998 INTRODUCTION Below is a recent Department of State Department (DOS) list of, I infer DOS believes, credible Iraqi opposition groups which DOS claims are vying for funding from the U.S. government. I've annotated the list with my comments drawn from my experiences with the Iraqi opposition and my own research. Where I have no information on a group, I've written "who/where/what" meaning: who leads the group, where are they located, and what have they done as an opposition group--questions which might be asked of DOS in the future. CONCLUSIONS The overwhelming majority of these groups appear not to be valid recipients of U.S. assistance. Many have political drawbacks (they are heavily influenced by Tehran or Damascus or they purport to be communists), some are strongly suspected of having clandestine ties to Baghdad, and many are not opposition groups, or they no longer exist. By providing this list, DOS has underscored the fact that there are relatively few opposition groups who are actually working to bring democracy to Iraq and these valid opposition groups have long-standing, although problematic at times, ties between themselves. THE GROUPS 1. The Al-Khoei Foundation: This London-based foundation is not an Iraqi opposition group but rather a Shia religious foundation. At least one board member is Iranian and there are several Pakistani board and staff members. 2. Arab National Group: Who/where/what? This listing might reflect the type of thinking that produced the "KLM" fiasco at the recent INS California trial of Hashim Qadir Hawlari in which the government was shown to not understand that KLM was a generic military acronym for any Kurdish liberation movement and not an acronym for a specific group. 3. Arab Organization of Human Rights: Headed by Adib Al-Jadr and Husayn Shabaan, both believed to be supporters of Barzan Al-Tikriti, the half-brother of Saddam Husayn. 4. Assembly of Islamic Forces: Who/where/what? 5. Association Islamique Irakienne en France: A small academic group with links to SCIRI (#76) and also has ties to the Human Rights coordinator of the INC (#37), Ghanim Jawad. 6. Association of Iraqi Economists: London-based academic group. Some members are linked to, or are family members of, INC (#37) officials. Led by Sinan Shibibi. 7. Association of Iraqi Academics: Who/where/what? 8. Association of Iraqi Democrats: Who/where/what? There are three possible groups for this listing: one is a London-based Syrian group, another is a group led by a London merchant, the other is an Assyrian group. 9. Assyrian American National Federation. Inc. The leadership recently met with Tariq Aziz, the Iraqi deputy prime minister, and Nazar Hamdoon, the Iraqi UN ambassador. Because of these meetings, the group is thought to be pro-Baghdad. 10. Assyrian Democratic Movement: Who/where/what? 11. Assyrian National Congress: Who/where/what? 12. Assyrian Universal Alliance: An organization promoting Assyrian interests world-wide and not an opposition group. 13. (Iraqi) Baath Party (in Damascus): Headed by a Syrian, Mithab Shinan, and a vehicle for Syrian intelligence. 14. Bet Nahrain Democratic Party: A public relations group associated with the mission of the Assyrian Universal Alliance (#12). 15. Center for Iraqi Studies: London-based office manned by Ghassan Atiya that produces the monthly "Iraq File." Widely believed in London Iraqi opposition circles to be connected to the Iraqi Intelligence Service (IIS). 16. Chaldean Federation of America: The leadership has recently been accused by its own membership of being controlled by Baghdad. 17. Communist Party in Northern Iraq: There is no communist party for, specifically, northern Iraq. See #30. 18. Da'wa Party: There are now at least five Da'wa parties, one of which is now or was listed as a terrorist organization by DOS. At least one party is based in London. They are all heavily influenced by Tehran. 19. Free Iraq Council: Possibly the sole member, Saad Jabr, accused the United States of betraying a, supposedly, viable anti-Saddam plot to Saddam. The result was an unusual public refutation by Secretary Christopher of Jabr's charges. 20. Human Rights Alliance: Led by Kathryn Porter, is not an Iraqi opposition group. 21. Independent Assembly of Iraq in U.S. and Canada: A pro-INC (#37) group. 22. Independent Democratic Party: Who/where/what? 23. Independent Iraqi Alliance: Disbanded because the leader, Hassan Naqib, suffered a stroke. Remnants are in Damascus. 24. INDICT: Headed by a British MP, but supported by Iraqi opposition groups. 25. Independent Islamic Conference: Who/where/what? 26. International Organization for the Defense of Human Rights in Iraq: Who/where/what? 27. Iraq Foundation: A Washington-based 501(c)3 that is not, by their by-laws, an opposition organization. Headed by Rend Rahim Francke. 28. Iraq National Unity Party: Who/where/what? 29. Iraqi Central Committee for Dialogue and Fellowship: Who/Where/what? 30. Iraqi Communist Party: Are anti-sanctions and against anything the U.S. government proposes. Nonetheless, it has good ties with the INC (#37) 31. Iraqi Cultural Association: Who/where/what? 32. Iraqi Free Officers Movement: Who/where/what? Originally a 1930s organization that now has several spin-offs which have a web-site but no visible structure. 33. Iraqi Islamic Association of America: A Houston-based group headed by Sheikh Zaki Suwaij who has close ties to Tehran. 34. Iraqi Islamic Revolution: Who/where/what? 35. Iraqi Liberal National Democratic Party: Who/where/what? 36. Iraqi National Accord (INA): Split into two groups. One is headed by Salah Omar Ali who produces the London paper, Al-Wifaq. The other is headed by Iyad Alawi, a Shia, and Salah Shaykhli which puts out the London paper, Baghdad. Iyad Alawi's group inside Iraq was destroyed by a Baghdad operation in June 1996. His group is still considered to be penetrated by the IIS. Recently an Alawi faction member, General Tawfik Yassiri, participated in an INC (#37) delegation to the United States and was expelled from the Alawi faction of the INA. 37. Iraqi National Congress: An umbrella group that has attempted to pull together Iraqi opposition factions into a loose organization that would be the basis for instituting democracy in Iraq. The INC believes it was betrayed by the U.S. government which followed policies that exacerbated rivalries between the constituent INC members. 38. Iraqi National Democratic Assembly: No longer exists. 40. Iraqi National Gathering: Formerly an ally of the INC (#37) in northern Iraq, was dispersed in the August 1996 invasion by the Iraqi army into northern Iraq and has a remnant in Macedonia. 41. Iraqi National Turkoman Party: Based in Ankara and headed by Muzafar Arsalan; has a good relationship with the INC (#37). 42. Iraqi National Union: Who/where/what? 43. Iraqi Research Center in Vienna: Small office headed by Mehdi Khafiz, a former Iraqi Communist Party official who now supports a dialogue with Saddam Hussein. 44. Iraqi Socialist Party: Based in London and headed by Mubir Wais, a Nassarist, who probably is under the control of Cairo or Damascus. 45. Islamic Accord (IA): Headed by Jamal Al-Wakil, the IA is a single member operation supported by the Alawi faction of the INA (#36). 46. Islamic Action Organization: Who/where/what? 47. Islamic Bloc: Who/where/what? 48. Islamic Forces Front: Who/where/what? 49. Islamic League of Iraqi Fayli Kurds: Who/where/what. Note: Fayli Kurds are Shia Kurds. 50. Islamic Movement of Kurdistan (IMK): Based in Halabja and led by Sheikh Uthman; strongly under the influence of Tehran although Uthman has strong ties to the INC (#37) which protected him during February 1994 fighting between the IMK and the PUK (#74). 51. Islamic Movement Organization: Probably the same group as #46. Who/where/what? 52. Jund Al-Imam: A small London-based group. Provided a delegate for the recent INC (#37) five-person delegation to Washington, Saad Jawad. 53. Kurdish Army of Islam: Who/where/what? 54. Kurdish Communist Party: Split down the middle between supporting the KDP (#61) or the PUK (#74) in these two groups' conflict. 55. Kurdish Human Rights Watch, Inc.: Who/where/what? 56. Kurdish National Congress of North America: Concerned with pan-Kurdish issues only; not an Iraqi opposition group. 57. Kurdish Peoples Democratic Party: No longer exists. The leader, Sami Abdurrahman, merged with the KDP (#61) in 1993. 58. Kurdish Tribal Society: The political organization of the Kurdish, Surchi clan. The leader resides in Baghdad, but the northern Iraq faction is friendly to the INC (#37). 59. Kurdistan Conservative Party: Another name for #58. 60. Kurdistan Democratic Alliance: Who/where/what? 61. Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP): One of the two major Kurdish factions in northern Iraq. Led by Masud Barzani, the KDP invited the Iraqi army to invade northern Iraq in August 1996 in a successful effort to drive its rival, the PUK (#74), from the city of Irbil. The KDP's access to protection fees from the oil smuggling traffic between Turkey and Iraq that the KDP refused to share with the PUK (#74) caused the conflict between these two INC constituents beginning in May 1994. The relationship between the KDP and the INC (#37) changes daily varying as the KDP tries to interpret auguries imbedded in Washington statements about Iraq. 62. Kurdistan Popular Democratic Party: Probably the same group as #57. If not, who/where/what? 63. Kurdistan Socialist Party: Based in Suleymania and a supporter of the PUK (#74). 64. Kurdistan Toilers Party: Led by Khalid Zangana who is a supporter of the PUK (#74). 65. League of the Family of the Prophet: A London-based foundation led by Muhammad Musawi. It is not a political organization. 66. London Joint Action Committee: No longer exists; was the precursor of the INC (#37). 67. Motherland (or Homeland) Party: Which? Who/where/what? 68. Movement for a Constitutional Monarchy: Who/where/what? 69. National Iraqi Committee for Protecting Central and Southern Iraq Based on UNSCR 688: Who/where/what? 70. National Reform Alliance: London-based political vehicle for a tribe in Iraq, the Beni Hashim, ostensibly led by Sheikh Sami Azara Al-Majoon. 71. National Salvation Council: The short-lived concoction of Husayn Kamal, Saddam Husayn's father-in-law, who defected to Jordan and returned to Iraq only to be killed. 72. New Umma Party: A renamed #19. 73. Organization of Human Rights in Iraq: Small London-based group led by Sahib Al-Hakim who is supported by SCIRI (#76). 74. Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK): One of the two major Kurdish groups in northern Iraq. Led by Jalal Talabani with headquarters in Suleymania (Iraq), the PUK has generally close ties to the INC (#37) and was the victim of the KDP(#61)-Iraqi army collusion in August 1996 to bring the Iraqi army into the north. 75. Social Democratic Party: Who/where/what? 76. Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI): Led by Bakr Al-Hakim from Tehran, SCIRI is funded by the Iranian government. Its military wing, the Badr Brigade, has many Iranian Pasdaran officers. It is part of the INC (#37) and maintains good contacts with INC officials in London. 77. Turkish Islamic Movement in Iraq: A Turkoman group representing Shia Turkomans; has strong ties with SCIRI (#76). 78. Turkomani Islamic Assembly: Probably identical with #77. If not, who/where/what? 79. Union of Islamic Forces: Who/where/what? 80. United Democratic Forces: Who/where/what? 81. Unity party of Kurdistan: Who/where/what? 82. Victims of War: Aren't we all? Who/where/what?