Wednesday, August 23, 2006

A Sad Bit of Trivia

You're probably aware that Saddam Hussein and some of his henchmen are now standing trial for attacking Iraq's Kurds with chemical weapons. If you saw any of the photographs from those Kurdish villages you won't need to be told just how awful that massacre was.

Trivia Question: Who was the first person to direct the use of chemical weapons against the Kurds?

Most people are stunned to learn that it was Winston Churchill who in 1920, as Britain's Colonial Secretary, authorized the use of chemical weapons against villages to curb Kurdish rebellion. Here's a little quote from WSC at the time: "I do not understand this squeamishness about the use of gas. I am strongly in favour of using poison gas against uncivilized tribes."

And that's a sad bit of trivia.

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