Friday, December 23, 2005

Thank you captain obvious

How this for a headline on the BBC's main page:

Killing of Iraq Kurds 'genocide':
A Dutch court rules that the killing of thousands of Kurds in Iraq in the 1980s was an act of genocide.

No shit. Thanks for clearing that up for us.

The ruling came in the case of Dutch trader Frans van Anraat, who was given a 15-year sentence for selling chemicals to Saddam Hussein's regime.

He was found guilty of complicity in war crimes over a 1988 chemical attack that killed more than 5,000 people, but acquitted of genocide charges.

It is the first trial to deal with war crimes against Kurds in Iraq and Iran.

You mean Saddam had chemical weapons and... and used them?! (gasp!) Say it ain't so!

[...] Van Anraat was not in court to hear the verdict.

He was charged with supplying thousands of tons of raw materials for chemical weapons used in the 1980-1988 war against Iran, and against Iraqi Kurds.

Thousands of tons? Someone tell me... is that a lot? Think it's all accounted for?

UPDATE: BBC had another article about the chemical weapons.

The United Nations suspected van Anraat was a major chemical supplier to the regime.

Some of those chemicals were allegedly used in the 1988 bombing of Halabja in northern Iraq, which killed an estimated 5,000 civilians in a single day.