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Iraq Wants Compensation For Osirak Attack

Plans to sue Israel over raid on nuclear site

by
Marc Tracy
January 05, 2010

Iraq will reportedly demand that Israel pay reparations for bombing its nuclear reactor at Osirak in 1981. A member of the Iraqi parliament told a local paper that his country will lodge its claim with the United Nations and cite a contemporaneous resolution that strongly condemned Israel’s air strike. (The raid is retrospectively credited with significantly setting back Saddam Hussein’s nuclear-weapons program.) The United States, of course, considers both countries important allies.

We will leave the final word here to Bob Dylan and his 1983 song “Neighborhood Bully,” which, as Tablet Magazine contributing editor Jeffrey Goldberg has noted, was penned in response to the international outcry that followed the Osirak raid:

Well, he knocked out a lynch mob, he was criticized,
Old women condemned him, said he should apologize.
Then he destroyed a bomb factory, nobody was glad.
The bombs were meant for him. He was supposed to feel bad.
He’s the neighborhood bully.

Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.

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