Blix blasts US "bastards"

Outgoing chief United Nations weapons inspector Hans Blix has described certain members of the US administration as "bastards" who set out to undermine him during his three years at the helm.

    Blix: bitter about US 

    In his interview to The Guardian, published on Wednersday Blix accused the US of treatig the United Nations as an "alien power" which it hoped would sink without trace.


    In an uncharacteristic outburst, Blix said, "I have my detractors in Washington. There are bastards who spread things around, of course, who planted nasty things in the media. Not that I cared very much."


    "It was like a mosquito bite in the evening that is there in the morning as an irritant," he added, claiming that "some elements" in the Pentagon were in a smear campaign against him.


    Iraqi sniping too


    Blix said, "By and large my relations with the US were good" but claimed that as the war against Iraq loomed, Washington "leaned on" the inspectors to use more damning language in their reports.


    He added that the United States President George W Bush's administration was particularly upset that the inspectors did not "make more" of their discovery in Iraq of cluster bombs and drones in the run-up to the US-led war.


    "It's true the Iraqis misbehaved and had no credibility but that doesn't necessarily mean that they were in the wrong. It could have been bad brinkmanship," Blix said.


    Blix also attacked the toppled regime of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. He said the Iraqis spread rumours about him being homosexual and "going to Washington to pick up my instructions every two weeks."


    Blix is retiring at the end of June after heading the UN Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) since March 2000, which fielded inspectors in Iraq to search for banned weapons between November 2002 and March 2003.


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