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Volume 5, Number 6 February 6, 1991



"Baghdad Betty" jabbers over the airwaves at homesick coalition troops. She taunts them about sweethearts back home whom she says are "hopping into the sack with Paul Newman, Tom Cruise, and Bart Simpson".

If you're aiming to worry the older ranks, Betty — two stars and higher — and so long as they believe Newman is juiced-up on his Geritol sufficiently to seduce his share of the 500,000 girlfriends and wives here in North America, you may have picked a winner. And if you know something about Tom Cruise that The National Enquirer or his wife don't know, you've got the scoop of the week. Call me.

Betty's been skimping on her homework, watching "Top Gun" video, old Newman flicks, and reading western-style T-shirts that say "Hi. I'm Bart Simpson, who the hell are you?" Bad news, Betty! Bart Simpson is an obnoxious nine-year-old cartoon brat starring in a television sit-com series titled "The Simpsons".

Well, the troops get a good laugh out of "Baghdad Betty", but no one is laughing at home. Here, the propaganda war hurts.

Direct from the Gulf, the North American public has learned two illustrious new words from the lexicon of defence: "collateral damage". To them it means kids like ours and people like you and me — dead or maimed kids and people.

Baghdad's sometimes masterful propagandists know that citizen casualties, bombed homes, smashed mosques and messed up baby food factories are worth their weight in `peaceniks' as propaganda tools. They are also valuable hideaways for chemical weapon stores, command centres, mini arsenals and air defence batteries.

Saddam has deftly reached across one third of the globe to tug our heart strings. Mass manipulation is so important to Saddam that Iraq's information services department is the first of its kind to have its own company of air defence gunners.

Watch your television closely and you'll see how it works. Iraq's propaganda machine tells us that "infidels" are deliberately bombing civilian targets. Their "documentary" proof: narrow-field television vignettes of another wrecked building and a close-up and interview with a fuming resident who seems to know exactly what to say about "devilish Zionists" and their "imperialistic infidel" comrades, in English yet. Yes, they speak English — wherever the camera goes.

Baghdad radio says that Iraqi artillery is knocking down Tomahawks left, right and centre. "Ha ha. Fie on you Yankee infidels." (But, if Iraq's leadership is genuinely concerned about the well-being of its citizens, wouldn't it instruct antiaircraft gunners to allow cruise missiles to proceed to military targets rather than making them explode in built-up areas? Or knock them down before they near Baghdad?)

Where do the afflicted Tomahawks strike? Wherever they fall. Certainly not on military or strategic targets these discriminate weapons are programmed to hit if unhindered during flight

In a nutshell, Iraqi antiaircraft guns knock down a cruise missile. Its high explosive warhead blasts a home, a grocery store or a stretch of highway. Then along comes one of Saddam's `cousins' from the Iraqi Department of Information with

an Arab actor version of urbanite Tom, Dick or Harriet dressed in their pj's — probably a local yokel who is faithful to the Ba'ath Party.

A higher ranking cousin of Saddam with Peter Arnett from CNN in tow arrives next with perhaps other traveling Baghdad media boys, all with their Betacams. By late suppertime on the same day in North America we are getting the full dose of propaganda.

The same routine is followed when cruise missiles or allied bombers strike at masked military targets like the Baghdad ABO weapons factory disguised with conveyor belts and baby formula cans.

There is an unpliable caution in all this. Just as the general media tells us to suspect data supplied by our own briefers, we should be one hundred-fold more suspicious of information coming from the enemy. Oh yes. You can say you read it here first where a spade is most often called a spade. Like it or not, the word is enemy — E-N-E-M-Y. Try it Mr. Mansbridge, Mr. Nash, you too Lloyd — "The enemy says..."

Micheal J. O'Brien


Two more Canadian warships will sail to the Persian Gulf this spring to replace the two destroyers on station in the region since September. HMCS Huron and Restigouche will relieve Athabaskan and Terra Nova — serving in the multinational combat and logistic task group protecting naval supply lines — this May. (See The Wednesday Report, January 9, page 5, "Maritime Command Juggles For Persian Gulf Crew Rotation".) The ship rotation was announced last Thursday by Defence Minister Bill McKnight in Ottawa who last October had announced a plan to rotate the crews of all three of CF ships in the Canadian task group serving in the Persian Gulf.

"The change of crew for HMCS Protecteur," said McKnight last week, "was completed earlier this month. However, the plan to rotate the crews of our two destroyer-escorts, HMCS Athabaskan and Terra Nova, was put on hold when hostilities broke out on January 16. Those crews have been away from Canada for five months, and on duty in the Gulf since October 1."

Originally, HMCS Kootenay and Nipigon were slated for dockside preparations and a trip to the Gulf in June. Athabaskan and Terra Nova were to have returned to port in July and Athabaskan could have headed up the St. Lawrence shortly afterwards to enter the TRUMP programme at MIL Davie in Lauzon, Quebec. Crews aboard Athabaskan and Terra Nova would have been rotated long before then.

Since January 16, the problem of crew rotation has been a complicated one, but McKnight's plan seems to resolve the problem in keeping with strong naval traditions. The crews of Athabaskan and Terra Nova will proudly sail their own vessels back to home port. Said McKnight, "They have done an excellent job under difficult conditions."

At a parallel press conference in Halifax, Rear-Admiral Richard Waller, Maritime Command chief of staff said that Huron will undergo weapons and sensor systems upgrading at the Ship Repair Unit Atlantic (SRUA) over the next ten weeks. Restigouche will receive its outfitting from SRUA's sister establishment in Esquimalt, B.C.

Rumours of a ship rotation started to fly fast and furious on January 26 when west coast-based Huron arrived in Halifax. Originally due to sit out the winter in port before heading to Quebec in spring as next in line for the Tribal-class Update and Modernization Programme (TRUMP), the DDH-280 class subhunter was berthed at SRUA's dock at CFB Halifax. At first navy spokesmen refused to comment on speculation that the ship would undergo retrograding, saying only, "The navy is considering all scenarios." But as the week drew on it became apparent that Huron was the centre of activity in the dockyard. The ship was surrounded with heavy duty equipment and cranes and large numbers of SRUA personnel, suggesting that a larger mission plan was under way.

This will be the fourth recent overhaul of a Canadian warship at the facility. When the federal government decided to commit Canadian naval forces to the Persian Gulf on August 10, SRUA was given three weeks to outrig the ships with modern weapons. The task was completed in


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ten days, rated by some experts as a post WW II record.

This time the dockyard will have a lead of over two months, something Admiral Waller says is needed because of the inclement North Atlantic winter weather hitting the harbour. Most of the work will take place outdoors and Waller says that will naturally slow down the schedule. Like its predecessors in the Gulf War, Huron and Restigouche will be converted from their antisubmarine role to that of surface combatants. The ships will be fitted with Mk 15 Block 1 Phalanx close-in weapon systems (the Vulcan chain gun), six .50 calibre machine guns, Shield Chaff launchers, and two 40mm/160 Mk 5C guns known as Boffins. These WW II veterans were removed from the destroyers nearly ten years ago and were earmarked for the Maritime Coastal Defence Vessel programme.

As before, the new weapons will come out of the existing stores of TRUMP and the Canadian Patrol Frigate (CPF) programme. James Wood, executive vice-president of Saint John Shipbuilding Limited (SJSL), the frigate's prime contractor, says that the removal of these systems from his programme will not create any delays in deliveries. Since there are twelve ships in the CPF run, he notes, the shipyard will have sufficient time to replace the weapons. He expects his firm and Ottawa to sort out the details of replacement over the next few months. Once the destroyers have finished their duty in the Gulf, Wood says that the weapons could be removed and returned to SJSL for refurbishing by the manufacturer. "Of course as an old navy man I'd like to see the other ships keep their new weapons," Wood said, preferring the purchase of new systems.

Although 33-year-old Restigouche is a year older than its Improved Restigouche-class sister ship Terra Nova, Waller says that it is well maintained and should have no problems. Moreover, Huron is a slightly younger ship than Athabaskan, and the admiral expects that it will be better suited to upgrading thanks to previous and more recent refits.

The ship rotation announcement is good news for the families of crew members on board Athabaskan and Terra Nova, who expected the ships home in February and March. Huron should be on-station in the region by late April and the two other destroyers are expected back in Halifax by early May. As well, elements of the 119th Air Defence Battery out of CFB Chatham, N.B. will be returning with the ships. The soldiers were assigned to the naval task group to provide air defence with their Blowpipe and Javelin shoulder-launched missiles, a tactic perfected by the British Army during the Falklands War. Waller said that the soldiers are now considered part of the ships' wartime complements and as fellow crew members will return home.

The admiral was quick to dash media speculation that HMCS Halifax, lead ship in the CPF programme, will see action in the Gulf. Although Halifax is expected to be handed over to the navy late April, it likely will not be finished sea trials in time before the war has ended. Waller said that he would like to see Halifax in the Gulf right now, since its combat suite would make it the best suited ship in the Canadian fleet. "But she's not ready and won't be by then," he said.


Defence Minister Bill McKnight, who already earned a boost in esteem as a result of his handling of the Gulf crisis, has won even wider acclaim among the small few CF personnel serving in the Persian Gulf Region.

Much was said last week by Canada's defence ministry in its various elements, but nothing was heard better than McKnight's remarks on pay benefits: "...each person currently serving in the Gulf will receive approximately $600 per month tax free, retroactive to January 15."

Unquestionably, Canada is comparatively stingy in both equipping and remunerating its serving men and women. The first problem seems to be a hopeless one and the recent cause of considerable embarrassment to Canada. The latter problem is apparently being addressed with a benefit package that includes the $600 increase for all ranks in-theatre, two free five-minute telephone calls per week for CF personnel in the Gulf, and a special extension of the filing deadline for 1990 income tax returns for Canadian Forces personnel serving in the Gulf.

Nothing has been said about the over-taxed human resources of Air Transport Group which this past weekend pulled out all the stops to fly spares into Qatar for an ailing CC-137. ATG pilots and crew have been working around the clock since last August, in and out of the war zone in

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unarmed aircraft, without any more than the usual compensation.


In our ongoing series highlighting the contributions of nations arrayed against Iraq, The Wednesday Report this week focusses on six nations. Seldom referenced in the daily media, the contributions of nations like neighbouring Australia and New Zealand are for their size and capability, significant. Official spokespersons from those nations say their governments are eager to help ensure that the U.N. multinational forces are successful in their fight to free Kuwait from the clutches of Iraq. Readers may note that in thirteen such reports in three weeks, we have deliberately not named sources. This has been done at the specific and emphatic request of the various officials in every case. These are not unusual wartime constraints.


Officials at the Australian High Commission in Ottawa gave The Wednesday Report a detailed account of their country's activities in the Persian Gulf. The frigates HMAS Adelaide and Darwin and supply ship HMAS Success arrived in the Gulf in early September 1990. At the end of last year, the frigates HMAS Sydney and Brisbane replaced Adelaide and Darwin. HMAS Westralia left home port in early January to relieve HMAS Success. The ships were initially tasked with the role of enforcing U.N. economic sanctions against Iraq, but were authorized on December 4, 1990 to engage in an offensive role if it became necessary. "The Australian naval task force in the Gulf is now with other members of the United Nations cooperating in armed action," said Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke during a statement made shortly after the shooting war began.

A specialized team of 23 divers will soon arrive aboard HMAS Westralia. The functions of the diving team could include recovery and disposal of mines, explosive ordnance disposal and limited battle damage repair. The team may move to other allied ships as required. Australia has also dispatched four medical teams — each consisting of ten medical personnel — which are currently serving aboard U.S. hospital ships already in the Gulf. A logistic support team from Australia is in place in the Gulf region as well as Australians who are serving on exchange with other allied forces.


Two C-130 Hercules transport aircraft from New Zealand are based in Saudi Arabia, according to a New Zealand High Commission official interviewed by The Wednesday Report last week. The aircraft are working with the British Royal Air Force in a support role. Additional personnel were recently sent to Saudi Arabia to assist with New Zealand's transport operations. One 32-member medical team from New Zealand is currently based with a U.S. Navy hospital in Bahrain. A second 20-person medical team is enroute to Bahrain where it will serve with British Forces.


Vessels from Norway and Denmark participating in the U.N. naval coalition are working as a team in the Persian Gulf. The Norwegian coast guard ship Andenes is functioning as a support ship for the Danish corvette Olfert Fischer, designated F 355 in the Niels Juel-class. The ships are enforcing economic sanctions against Iraq. Both countries are also providing medical support to the U.N. multinational forces. Norway sent three field hospitals to Turkey, each consisting of fifty beds. A fourth Norwegian field hospital made up of 200 medical personnel was recently dispatched to Saudi Arabia. A Danish medical crew of twenty doctors and nurses is enroute to Saudi Arabia to support a British hospital 250 kilometers from the Saudi/Kuwaiti border and a hospital in Denmark has been earmarked to receive casualties of the Gulf War.

Norway has channeled funds through voluntary organizations for humanitarian assistance to refugees. One such organization is the High Commission for Refugees to which Norway has given both money and the use of a C-130 Hercules aircraft to help with the transportation of blankets, tents and medicine for refugees. The distribution of other funds has also been approved, but a Royal Norwegian Embassy spokesman was not at liberty to release details when interviewed by The Wednesday Report on Monday. Other Norwegian contributions to the allied effort include a pledge to


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provide peacekeeping forces and agreements between Norwegian ship owners to carry U.S. equipment to the Gulf.


An enthusiastic 180-member antichemical warfare unit from Czechoslovakia is now based in the northern region of Saudi Arabia. The unit is divided into a field hospital for the treatment of chemical attack casualties; three, small antichemical reconnaissance units; and one company of fighting soldiers to defend the unit. Czechoslovakian instructors are providing training to Saudi forces in the use of the antichemical reconnaissance equipment which is expected to remain in Saudi Arabia after the war is over. A spokesman from the Military Attache's Office in Washington informed The Wednesday Report that in a few days, Czechoslovakia will send a military delegation to Saudi Arabia to meet with Saudi military leaders. The officials will discuss possible future cooperation between the two countries during the war and post-war period.

An official from the Czech Embassy in Ottawa indicated that Czechoslovakia is discussing the possibility of sending nurses and hospital supplies to the Persian Gulf region, depending on the availability of U.S. aircraft for transportation.


"From the very beginning, Bulgaria condemned the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait," says an official from the Bulgarian Embassy in Ottawa. Bulgaria first proposed to send a unit of minehunting troops and medical staff to the Persian Gulf region contingent on having at least one-half of the expenses paid by Saudi Arabia. After no developments resulted from this initiative, Bulgaria then offered its tourist complexes near the Black Sea — along with medical personnel — as facilities for treating wounded soldiers from the U.N. coalition forces.

The official stated that although Bulgaria fully supports the coalition and its goal to liberate Kuwait, the country is financially strapped because of severed trade relations with Iraq and the ensuing war. Prior to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, Bulgaria enjoyed "very good trade relations with Iraq" and provided the Mideast country with experts in agriculture, construction and light industry while its prime oil deliveries came from countries such as Iraq and Iran. With no oil resources of its own, Bulgaria now receives a limited supply of oil from the Soviet Union, with which it has strong economic ties. Now that the war has begun, Bulgaria has lost $1.5 billion — the total debt owed to Bulgaria by Iraq before Kuwait's invasion. "Bulgaria is fully paralyzed. Its people are faced with basic food shortages," said the official. He expressed his hope that when the war is over, countries like Canada will give Bulgaria some much needed financial assistance.


Followers of televised reports on the present Gulf War might have noticed reference to `more powerful ammunition' being used by British Army M109 SP howitzers during exercises. Artillery experts consider that this comment probably refers to ammunition of the family developed for the FH-70 towed howitzer which has been supplied to the U.K. from German stocks.

New equipment rushed into service for U.K. forces in the Gulf includes the British Aerospace air-launched antiradar missile (ALARM). ALARM had just emerged from trials at the USN's China Lake range when the Gulf crisis broke. At that stage it was several years behind schedule but has been rushed into service under a $15.1 million production contract. Other contracts include $13.8 million for unspecified avionics, thought to centre on an accelerated programme for IR linescan equipment for the Tornado GR1a reconnaissance aircraft. A further $8.9 million has been spent on modifications to Tornado aircraft including work on engines and $13.3 million on cooling equipment air conditioners and sand filters. Camouflage and clothing for British troops is likely to cost around $35 million.

There have been several notable purchases of specialized vehicles as a result of accelerated trialing. The British Army and RAF have acquired a total of twenty-six new 38-tonne tanker ve

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hicles built on the AWD multidrive off-highway chassis and a reliable source claims that there has been a significant U.K. purchase of Aardvark flail units for mine clearance with others sold to export customers.


A stiff blow has been dealt to Iraq's chemical and nuclear weapons plants and of important note, to its chemical weapons storage facilities. Last week, The Wednesday Report set out key locations of manufacturing sites. (See January 30, page 5, "Allies Target Iraq's Chemical And Nuclear Facilities".) Later last week, General Norman Schwarzkopf, the U.S. commander of Gulf-theatre operations claimed that some 32 nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) manufacturing and storage sites had been bombed repeatedly to the point of destruction.

According to Schwarzkopf, each site was studied carefully before a raid, then bombed using precision munitions and nearly flawless techniques. But although the U.S. military briefings given in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia prove a high degree of accuracy in missions the U.S. cares to talk about, those same techniques have erred causing the death of American troops struck by missiles and cluster bombs. In short, accuracy, as one would expect, is not perfect.

Debate about what Iraq claims is a baby formula factory but which strong and compelling evidence suggests was an ABO (agents of biological origin) facility points to a problem not hitherto given much attention. What, if any, is the impact on Baghdad from agents released from the facility? Could disease be carried by the Tigress River — as happened in 19th century Iraq — to other parts of the country and beyond? Most ABO agents are at first release undetectable and can take many days before having an impact. (See The Wednesday Report, January 16, page 2, "Iraq's Unconventional Weapons: Opening Pandora's Box".)

Another concern surrounds the possible effect of partially destructive raids on chemical storage facilities where antipersonnel chemical agents could be atomized by bomb explosions into a lethal cocktail of toxic gases. Although not clear whether they are stored separately, agents exist as unitary or binary chemical components. Among them would be blood agents such as cyanide; nerve agents Tabin, Sarin, Soman and VX; blistering agents such as Phosgene Oxime, Mustard, Yperite, and perhaps Lewisite; riot control agents; and a wide range of living and non-living disease toxins. (See The Wednesday Report, August 15, 1990, page 6, "Iraq's Chemical Weapons Are No Myth" and January 23, page 3, "Iraqi Chemical Weapons And The Canadian Antidote, HI-6".)

Sources to The Wednesday Report claim that troops close to the Kuwaiti/Saudi border have experienced chemical alarms as a result of perimeter sensors triggered by apparently higher than normal airborne particle densities of the elements identified as threats.

Clearly the U.S. high command is not telling all, but more likely than an outright chemical attack by Iraqis having taken place prior to Monday is the possibility that drifting gases from more than twenty bombed-out storage facilities have reached allied troops. That poses an even bigger question about the possible impact on Iraqi citizenry.

These recent events have also raised questions about the protective suits worn by allied troops which sources say have a limited life once first used. (See August 29, 1990, page 3, "Getting There And Fighting — A Report From Washington".) Estimates are varied and while American troops were first told that the suits are effective for two weeks after they are removed from their plastic packages, soldiers have recently been told, said Air Force Captain Ray Martell in Riyadh, that the gear is effective for a period of 22 days. Front line American soldiers who have not received replacement suits are reportedly saying they have been told thirty days is the maximum effective period. Some suits have been worn often since January 18, 19 days ago.

In Israel, citizens still fear a gas attack upon Tel Aviv, Haifa and Jerusalem. With low accuracy levels and from locations further east in Iraq than from where early launches took place, Iraq has proven its ability to lob al-Hussein missiles at civilian targets. Recently, perhaps because they are at the longest reach of their 370 to 400-mile range, al-Hussein missiles have landed in the "Disputed Territories" and either inside or close to the Jordanian border. Can Saddam risk losing support from the Palestinians by installing crude chemical warheads on his al-Husseins?

U.S. Secretary of Defence Dick Cheney commented on the weekend that Saddam "still has Scud capability and we assume he still has chemical capability tied to the Scuds, although we've never seen him use it." Without specifically referring to Israel's nuclear capability, Cheney added,


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"I assume he [Saddam] knows that if he were to resort to chemical weapons then that would be an escalation to weapons of mass destruction and that the possibility would then exist, certainly with respect to the Israelis, for example, that they might retaliate with unconventional weapons as well."

Does that mean that the nuclear proponents now emerging in Washington (the "nuke the gook" faction is back) will encourage Israel to conduct a nuclear raid against Iraqi forces? Certainly the Israeli population want revenge and they expect something on a par with the brilliance of the raid on Entebbe. One could postulate a win-win-lose scenario that does America's dirty work, establishes Israel as a mighty nuclear power of the Mideast, and gets the Arab world seething mad and hungry for their own nuclear bombs. The latter could have horrible implications, but Israeli intelligence is expecting something horrible too. How much will the Israelis take?

For that matter, how much will the Americans take? George Bush doesn't want to use nuclear weapons in the Gulf, but it may be a tough choice. A report on bomb damage to Iraqi forces in Kuwait is due to arrive today in the White House. How much damage has the air war inflicted upon Iraq's ability to fight a protracted ground war? What surprises will unfold today? Iraq has threatened a major, non-conventional offensive. Where? Nobody knows.

Reports out of Britain suggest that Saddam Hussein has given his frontline commanders the go-ahead to use chemical weapons and that it is no longer a question of "if", but "when" allied forces must contend with that threat. According to the Sunday Times, British forces in the Gulf area were told last week that Saddam had approved the use of chemical agents and that the allies had evidence Saddam had given his field commanders permission to use the weapons at their discretion. Clearly, this is an NBC war, and no realist should be too surprised as each ugly element makes its appearance.


There is talk in the European defence marketplace of a batch of up to fifty GHN-45 155mm towed howitzers on offer from their builder Noricum as a result of a frustrated order from Iraq. The howitzers — which have their origin in the SRC design — might be acquired by Saudi Arabia. The past week has also brought a curious story in the respected U.K. newspaper The Independent that Saudi Arabia had tried to acquire the entire 1991 production of 155mm ammunition from the South African arms producer Armscor. The story which alleges that South Africa had been shipping ammunition to Iraq until relatively recently claims that the U.S. authorities intervened to outbid Saudi Arabia for the munitions. Another London report states that the coalition forces in the Gulf have acquired 4.5-inch naval gun ammunition from South Africa's stockpile.


DND has announced that Reserve Force Brig.-Gen. Nicholas Hall will be promoted to the rank of Major-General later this year and will assume command of Land Force Central Area (LFCA), a regional headquarters of Mobile Command responsible for all Regular and Reserve Force units in Ontario. Brig.-Gen. Hall began his Canadian army career in 1949 when he joined the Ontario Regiment Cadet Corps in Oshawa, Ontario. He has served in many senior positions within Mobile Command leading up to his present appointment as Deputy Commander, LFCA. The brigadier-general is a 33-year veteran of General Motors of Canada in Oshawa and is currently the company's manager of media relations. He will replace Regular Force Maj.-Gen. Robert Stewart who has commanded LFCA since its establishment in August 1990. (See May 16, 1990, page 4, "LFCA Commander MGen Stewart Details Total Force Plan".)


The Bendix Avelex unit of Allied-Signal Aerospace Canada will begin operations to establish a new airline product support facility at the Summerside air base in Prince Edward Island sometime mid-year. The facility will provide services for the maintenance and repair of equipment from

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regional aircraft such as the de Havilland Dash 8, Aerospatiale/Alenia ATR 42, and British Aerospace 146. Bendix plans to invest over $8 million in the facility with financial assistance from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and the government of Prince Edward Island. The project is expected to create over fifty high technology jobs during the next three years.


The Pentagon has attempted to quash speculation surrounding 100 Iraqi top-line aircraft which departed Iraq and were recovered at Iranian air bases. It has also played down our reports of Iraqi aircraft flown to Sudan and Yemen. (See The Wednesday Report, September 19, 1990, page 3, Iraq's Strength May Be On The Upswing".)

"Iraqi aircraft are leaving the fight and that pleases us," is a statement oft repeated in various forms by U.S. military officials. That is the limit of what we can get from official sources. Nonetheless, three speculative theories have emerged, one of which has to do with reports from Moscow that Saddam Hussein's top air force generals were put to death either because of their rebellious attitude or because of the Air Force Generals' inability to sufficiently protect prized assets from allied bombing attacks. The theory holds out that Iraqi pilots fled their country as a result of the leaderless Air Force falling into disarray. Count that theory out. Those same Generals have been spotted in Baghdad say The Wednesday Report's sources.

Iran has officially declared that it will detain Iraqi pilots and their aircraft until the Gulf War is over, but many Americans distrust Iran's leadership as much as they distrust Saddam. Theories have been advanced which include the speculation of an air attack against coalition forces launched by Iraqi warplanes now in Iran. Some speculation suggests that weapons of mass destruction were among the underwing stores of the illusive Iran-bound aircraft. Meanwhile, Iran's leadership, vying for a role as post-war leading Arab nation, offers a peace brokerage role between Saddam Hussein and George Bush as Moscow urges for a cease-fire. Soviet Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Belonogov was to arrive in Teheran yesterday to sound out Iranian President Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani on his ideas for settling the conflict. Syrian Defence Minister Mustafa Tlass visited Moscow and met with Soviet Defence Minister Dmitri Yazov to discuss the war last week.

While the story of executed Air Force Generals originated in Moscow with an independent news source, other rumours have circulated about Soviet assistance to Baghdad in technical matters pertaining to the range and accuracy of its Scud missiles. Rumours also suggest that the Soviets have counselled Iraq on the timing of U.S. intelligence-satellite passes, and on how to hide its mobile missile launchers from satellite detection. A fifteen year old "friendship" treaty with Iraq keeps everyone guessing about where the Soviets really stand on the present Gulf War.

The disintegration of the Soviet Union ranging from the Baltic states to the regions surrounding the Caspian Sea has preoccupied Moscow's leadership as the whole country suffers a colossal economic crisis. Protecting its significant foothold in the Mideast must certainly have a high priority. Meanwhile, Soviet military analysts have a keen interest in maintaining relations with Baghdad in order to fully evaluate the effectiveness of American-built weapons and U.S. combat battlefield tactics used against Iraq. No accurate information is available about what number of Soviets remain in Iraq at this time.

Long after Saddam's invasion of Kuwait, through the time of the U.N. Security Council's stiffest resolutions against Iraq, and all through last fall, the Soviet Union was providing sophisticated levels of military training to 178 Iraqi servicemen under contracts with Baghdad which were to have expired at the beginning of last December. Certainly the Soviets, as always, cannot be completely trusted.


Spar Communications Group, a unit of Spar Aerospace Limited, has won a $3 million contract to supply SENEAM, Mexico's national air traffic control organization with a satellite network. Work


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at six new stations and improvements at four existing locations — the first phase of the project — is already in progress. The network will ultimately serve 45 locations throughout Mexico and will provide the country's airports with a modernized and enlarged communications capability. Spar Communications Group is also completing installation of three other telecommunications networks in Mexico.


The Canadian Forces Supply System Upgrade (CFSSU) project which seeks to replace the CF's existing supply system is progressing to the Request For Proposal (RFP) stage. DND now expects to issue an RFP at the end of April, approximately three months behind schedule. (See The Wednesday Report, November 21, 1990, page 5, "Canadian Forces Supply System Upgrade".) The reason for the delay, says Colonel R. Bruce Morris, CFSSU Project Manager, is that "preparations of the systems specifications are more complex than previously forecasted".

At least eight companies will compete for the contract valued at up to $165 million (budget year dollars). Last fall, a draft version of the RFP was distributed to nine, eligible potential prime contractors including Andersen Consulting (Canada), CGI Group Inc., Digital Equipment of Canada, DMR Group Inc., EDS of Canada, Fenco Engineers Inc., IBM Canada Ltd., Paramax Electronics Inc., and SHL System House Ltd. However, EDS has since withdrawn from the competition, Digital Equipment has teamed with Andersen Consulting, and MacDonald Dettwiler has been added.

During the first quarter of 1992, two prime contractors will be awarded $4 million definition contracts for the preparation of implementation proposals. An implementation contract will be awarded to the winning prime and its team late 1993 or early 1994.

Three Project Management Office (PMO) support contracts for project definition have already been awarded. Under the contracts, STM System Corporation is responsible for engineering support services; ADGA Group is providing independent verification and validation services; and Quadrum Consultants Inc. is supplying project management support services.

Although overall funding of CFSSU has been cut by 10 percent, Colonel Morris is satisfied with the progress of the project thus far, particularly in terms of the cooperation and communication between the CFSSU PMO and the potential prime contractors. "I am pleased with the bilateral relationships that have been developed with the potential primes. They are very mutually beneficial and very favourable," he said.


Aerospatiale (France) and Alenia (Italy) have released details pertaining to an ambitious business plan proposed for de Havilland, if its bid for the company is successful. The two firms have been engaged in negotiations with Boeing (U.S.A.) since it approached the Franco-Italian team regarding the sale of its de Havilland division.

Aerospatiale and Alenia are proposing to include de Havilland in their international team as a united force tackling the world commuter market. De Havilland, under the proposal, would remain as a complete aircraft manufacturing unit. The bidder proposes nearly $1 billion worth of research and development work to be carried out in Downsview during the 1990s. The Dash 8 line would be further developed, manufactured and assembled in Downsview.

The bidder's statement promises that "major subsystems of airliners will be designed, manufactured and assembled in Downsview for Boeing, Airbus and other plane manufacturers. De Havilland would participate on an equal footing with Aerospatiale and Alenia in the development, assembly and manufacture of a new commuter family to address the 80 to 130 seat capacity market. This development will be the opportunity for de Havilland to receive a transfer of technology from its parent companies in the field of jet-powered airplanes."

The plan suggests that Aerospatiale and Alenia will place on an equal footing the three industrial sites: Toulouse (France), Naples (Italy) and Downsview (Canada), gradually bringing the latter to the same world class standards of productivity and quality as its own two plants. (See The Wednesday Report, August 29, 1990, page 8, "`Due Diligence' Commences For Sale Of De Havilland".)


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February 6, 1991


Boeing Canada, de Havilland Division has received an order from Air Wisconsin Inc. — a United Express carrier — for five Dash 8 Series 300 aircraft valued at $63 million (U.S.). The aircraft are slated for delivery between January and July 1992. This order follows a $90 million (U.S.) contract from Air Wisconsin for five Dash 8 Series 100s and three Dash 8 Series 300s to be delivered from June to September.


February 11-12 — The Canadian Maritime Industries Association's (CMIA) 43rd Annual Technical Conference will be held in conjunction with the 6th Annual Canadian Shipbuilding and Offshore Exhibition (CSOE'91) at the Ottawa Congress Centre and the Westin Hotel, Ottawa. The technical conference's open sessions on February 12 will be presented on the Capital Hall level at the Ottawa Congress Centre while CSOE'91 will be located in the Congress Hall at the Ottawa Congress Centre. The preliminary list of technical presentations has been drafted and the 150 available booths are quickly being reserved. For more information on the largest technical marine conference held in Canada contact Mrs. Joy MacPherson, Director, Administration and Finance, CMIA, (613) 232-7127.

February 13 — The Winter '91 meeting of the Forum for Industrial Participation (formerly CIBA) will be held at the Ottawa Congress Centre from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm. The seminar will include a workshop, two presentations and the first of four panel discussions in the "Industrial Benefits Management" series. Reg H. Dorrett, Assistant Deputy Minister for International Trade Development, Department of External Affairs & International Trade is the scheduled luncheon speaker. Fees which include lunch are $125.00 for non-members and $75.00 for government personnel. FIP members may attend the meeting free of charge. For further information contact Bob Brown at (613) 733-0704.

February 19 — The Canadian Defence Preparedness Association (CDPA) will hold its February luncheon at the Royal Canadian Air Force Officers' Mess in Ottawa at noon. The Chief, Land Doctrine and Operation or his representative will speak on the topic "Land Equipment Programmes and Requirements". Contact CDPA at (613) 235-5337 for further details.

February 27-March 1 — The High Technology Export Conference "HiTEC '91" sponsored by External Affairs and International Trade Canada will be held at the Ottawa Congress Centre. This unique conference will assemble more than 50 trade commissioners from Canadian trade posts abroad and 20 Canadian and foreign government agencies to assist industry in exporting products and services to international markets. Trade commissioners will answer questions on opportunities for the export of commercial and defence products and services to their territories as well as possibilities of sourcing technology. For information contact Gisèle Laframboise at (613) 996-8040.

May 6-7 — The 38th Annual General Meeting of the Canadian Aeronautics and Space Institute will be held at the Chateau Champlain Hotel in Montreal, Quebec. The meeting will feature a lecture from an outstanding member in the scientific or engineering fields of aeronautics, space or associated technologies; symposiums based on papers; will recognize and reward industry leaders; and discuss the future of CASI. For more information contact the Conference Coordinator at (613) 234-0191.

CASI call for papers: In conjunction with the meeting, CASI has issued a call for papers for two symposium topics including Advanced Technology General Aviation Aircraft, and Simulation and Training. Each symposium has its own specifics regarding guidelines for papers. For additional information on the Advanced Technology, General Aviation Aircraft Symposium contact Mr. D.W. Laurie-Lean at (613) 992-8938; and for the Simulation and Training Symposium, Mr. Phil D'Eon at (416) 792-1981. The meeting will also include a symposium on Aerospace Propulsion which will be based on invited papers.

May 13-16 — The fourth European Aerospace Conference will be held at the Maison de la Chimie in Paris. The Association Aéronautique et Astronautique of France, Germany's Deutsche Gesellschaft für Luft-und Raumfahrt and the Royal Aeronautical Society are organizing the conference which will deal primarily with "Launch Bases" and "Satellite Control Systems". Separate symposia will be organized around each topic. This conference, to be attended by well-known specialists, will provide an opportunity to national and multinational agencies, manufacturers, operators and researchers who design, produce, manage or use these large launch and control infrastructures to exchange information and views.

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The Wednesday Report - Copyright 1991

February 6, 1991

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Publisher and Editor In Chief: Micheal J. O'Brien

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