Sunday, February 02, 2003

A Coalition of the Bought Off

U.S. woos war allies with cash, weapons Iraq's neighbors swap staging sites for billions in aid By Stephen J. Hedges and Catherine Collins, Chicago Tribune. National correspondent Stephen J. Hedges reported from Washington and Catherine Collins from Istanbul Published February 2, 2003 WASHINGTON -- When U.S. and Turkish officials meet this week to discuss Turkey's potential role in any war with Iraq, they will also review an offer of U.S. aid. The multibillion dollar offer may look like so much diplomacy but is, in fact, a bid--the price the Bush administration is willing to pay for the use of Turkey's military bases, airfields and ports. The U.S. is offering more than $4 billion in loans and grants, according to a Western diplomat in Istanbul, which represents a "significant step forward" in the Bush administration's efforts to add a critical ally to its "coalition of the willing" against Iraq.

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