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Profile: James Placke


Positions that James Placke has held:

  • Deputy Assistant Secretary of State
  • Middle East analyst at Cambridge Energy Research




Quote, November 2002

   “Iraqis are pretty nationalistic. The assumption that the US will just walk in and call the shots—I think that's simplistic. Unless we behave like a colonialist occupier, we're not going to call the shots.” [MSNBC, 11/11/02]

Associated Events




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James Placke actively participated in the following events:


March 29, 1984      US-Iraq 1980s

       During a meeting in Jordan, Iraqi diplomat Kizam Hamdoon and US diplomat James Placke discuss a proposed daft resolution that Iran presented to the UN Security Council (see (Mid-March 1984)) calling on the international body to condemn Iraq's use of chemical weapons. Hamdoon tells Placke that Iraq would prefer a Security Council presidential statement in lieu of a resolution, adding that the statement should (1) “mention former resolutions of the war”; (2) include a “strong call for progress toward ending the war through ceasefire or negotiations”; and (3) not identify any specific country as responsible for chemical weapons use. Placke says that he will honor the request but asks that Iraq halt its purchasing of chemical weapons from US suppliers so as not to “embarrass” the US. Placke also warns that the US would be implementing licensing requirements on five chemical compounds for both Iraq and Iran. Placke says that the US does not want to be the “source of supply for anything that could contribute to the production of CW,” but adds reassuringly that the US does “not want this issue to dominate our bilateral relationship.” [Institute for Policy Studies, 3/24/03 Sources: State Department Summary of March 28 meeting between US diplomat James Plack and Iraqi representative Nizar Hamdoon]
People and organizations involved: James Placke, Kizam Hamdoon

March 30, 1984      US-Iraq 1980s

       The United Nations Security Council issues a presidential statement condemning the use of chemical weapons without a specific reference to Iraq, despite Iran's insistence that the Security Council pass a binding resolution condemning Iraq's use of chemical weapons against Iran. Interestingly, the previous day (see March 29, 1984), Iraqi diplomat Kizam Hamdoon and US diplomat James Placke had met and Hamdoon had stated Iraq's preference that no resolution be passed and that any statement avoid referring directly to Iraq. As a State Department memo by James Placke notes, “The statement, by the way contains all three elements Hamdoon wanted.” [National Security Archive, 2/25/2003 Sources: US Department of State Memo from James Placke, March 30, 1984]
People and organizations involved: James Placke

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