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Is it time for the anti-war crowd to sit down and STFU?

I'm not 100% certain, but I think so...

Summary of WMDs and WMD material found in Iraq after the invasion

(See excerpt below the fold)

Let me write the reponse from the anti-war crowd: "Those weren't actual WMDs, and those that were weren't actual huge stockpiles ready to use, so Chimpy McBushitler still lied us into his phony war!" Kindly note the continual moving of the goalposts every time more evidence backing the decision to go to war comes to light. I once dated a woman who argued like that; it's a miracle that relationship lasted as long as it did.

From Richar Miniter's Disinformation: The 22 Media Myths That Undermine the War on Terror.

In a secret operation on June 23, 2004, U.S. forces seized 1.77 metric tons of enriched uranium--the kind used to make fuel for atomic bombs--in a nuclear facility in Iraq, according to BBC News. The BBC has been consistently critical of Bush and the Iraq war. U.S. Department of Energy experts also removed 1,000 radioactive materials in "powdered form, which is easily dispersed," said Bryan Wilkes, an Energy Department spokesman. The material would have been ideal for a radioactive dirty bomb. Then energy secretary Spencer Abraham hailed the operation as "a major achievement." Polish general Marek Dukaczewski, Poland's military intelligence chief, revealed that troops in the Polish-patrolled sector of Iraq had received tips from Iraqis that chemical weapons were sold to terrorists on the black market. The weapons had been buried to avoid detection, the general told the BBC. Polish military officials bought seventeen chemical-weapons warheads from Iraqis for $5,000 each to keep them from Iraq's so-called insurgents. "An attack with such weapons would be hard to imagine," the general said. "All of our activity was accelerated at appropriating these warheads." Tests confirmed that some of the warheads contained cyclosarin, a nerve agent five times more powerful than sarin. These chemical weapons were supposed to have been completely destroyed during the 1991-1998 UN inspector regime. Clearly, some WMD survived.

U.S. soldiers stormed into a warehouse in Mosul, Iraq, on August 8, 2005, and were surprised to find 1,500 gallons of chemical agents. It was the largest chemical weapons lab found in Iraq. The intelligence community remains divided over the origin of those chemical weapons (either from inside Iraq or outside) and whether they were made during Saddam's regime or after.

When a roadside bomb exploded near a U.S. convoy on May 17, 2004, it was found to contain the nerve agent sarin. Army Brigadier General Mark Kimmitt told reporters that an "improvised explosive" was rigged to a 155 mm artillery shell that contained sarin. The shell was a "binary chemical projectile," in which the two ingredients that produce
sarin are separated by a propeller blade that spins while the shell is in flight, mixing the deadly gas to full potency. Since the chemical weapons shell was used as a bomb, and not fired from the barrel of an artillery piece, the internal rotor did not spin and the deadly agent was not widely dispersed. As a result, Kimmitt explained, only traces of sarin were produced and released. The soldiers were briefly hospitalized and decontaminated. Again, all such chemical weapons warheads were supposed to be destroyed in 1991--yet Saddam's WMD still threaten the lives of American troops to this day.

The Iraq Survey Group, led by David Kay and charged with finding WMD after the war, discovered a projectile loaded with mustard gas attached to a roadside bomb in May 2004. Fortunately, the mustard gas was "stored improperly" and was "ineffective." The mustard-gas shell is believed to be part of the eighty tons of such gas still unaccounted for.


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» Myopic Zeal linked with Enriched Uranium Found in Iraq

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Comments (79)

I take it that the book men... (Below threshold)
Nicholas:

I take it that the book mentions that mobile biological weapon laboratory found, too, although it's not in this exerpt too.

As I understand it, experts who were asked whether the lab could have been used for non-BW purposes basically said "maybe, but if that's what you wanted to use it for, you'd design it differently - however it's just about perfect for making certain biological agents".

Seems pretty damning to me.

If there were no NBC weapons, what was Saddam trying so hard to hide? Either he had some, he thought he had some, or he's a complete moron.

So does this book get ignor... (Below threshold)

So does this book get ignored by MSM because it comes from Regnery Press?

In a Democratic and free US... (Below threshold)
Samuel Erickson:

In a Democratic and free US, anti and pro opinions about anything don't have to STFU. STFU is a language of dictatorship, ignorance, and of illiterate cowards. It's the privelege and right of every citizen of a free society to express themselves, regardless of others' opinions, and without having to resort to using weak, ignorant language.

About Iraq, facts are that there were no hidden WMDs. This is proven by the fact that the Bush Administration and Blair are very embarassed about their previous claims in which which they lied about to the American, British, and world public. Even Bush lately conceded that there were no WMDs as he previously claimed before the 2003 War. So it doesn't require a genius to figure this out.

Secondly, the claims of small chemical finds haven't been substantiated or proven by even the US. If they were proven then the US and Britain would have seized this as an opportunity to say "we told you so!"....Instead, they conceded that WMDs didn't exist and under much scrutiny and embarassment, criticism as the whole world and American public knows well now.

To the contrary, there is recent, documented, and proven evidence of our troops using Mk 77 (illegal napalm bombs) and White Phosphorus in Iraq on numerous occasions...This is a form of banned and illegal WMD. Our Foreign terror, crimes, and scandals are starting to stink.

"In a Democratic and free U... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

"In a Democratic and free US, anti and pro opinions about anything don't have to STFU. STFU is a language of dictatorship, ignorance, and of illiterate cowards. It's the privelege and right of every citizen of a free society to express themselves, regardless of others' opinions, and without having to resort to using weak, ignorant language."

Unless you're the swiftvets or question Joe Wilson's honesty or motives.

OK, then, Samuel, how about... (Below threshold)

OK, then, Samuel, how about this:

There is now clear and compelling evidence that there were WMDs, WMD precursors, and WMD components in Iraq. Under the terms of Iraq's surrender in 1991, they had to convincingly prove that they had none. Ergo, they violated those terms and the invasion was justified. So those who have been howling about "Iraq had no WMDs! Bush lied us into the war!" need to STFU about that point now that it has been shredded, and find something new to whine about -- a challenge I believe you and your colleagues are eminently able to do.

J.

Samuel,I agree. In... (Below threshold)
Nicholas:

Samuel,

I agree. In our free and open societies, people are free to make complete asses of themselves ad infinitum if they wish to continually repeat positions which have been thoroughly debunked.

However, it is obstructive, not constructive. We could be moving along to the next set of important things which merit serious debate. However, unfortunately, there are groups of people who are not interested in serious debate. They're interested in snarky comments and witty little phrases which are provably wrong but make good sound bites (example: "illegal napalm bombs").

So, I'm ready for serious discussion. As soon as I find someone with an opposing point of view, a brain and the willingness to bring the two together in reasoned debate, it will happen. Such people exist but are too few and far between for my liking.

If anyone actually wants to know the legal status of Incendiary Weapons (nobody uses Napalm any more, so far as I know), rather than just babble about it, you should read the CCCW:

http://www.mineaction.org/docs/120_.asp#p3

Keep in mind this document is a convention, not a law (we can all argue until we're blue in the face whether international law exists, who defines it, etc. so let's not), and as such applies to signatories. It was ratified by the US in 1995. So, I would hope the US holds to this convention. Please note it does not ban incendiaries, but does limit their uses so that civilians are not likely to be hit by them. (I know the US tries hard to avoid civilian casualties anyway, so this should not be an issue, convention or no.)

As hard as I try, I can't u... (Below threshold)
LJD:

As hard as I try, I can't understand how an event alleged by insurgents, or reported by the Muslim Daily News amounts to:
"To the contrary, there is recent, documented, and proven evidence of our troops using Mk 77 (illegal napalm bombs) and White Phosphorus in Iraq on numerous occasions".
I guess it all depends on what you believe. In this case, Samuel's beliefs are way off the mark.

Ok,I'll take the word of so... (Below threshold)
pj:

Ok,I'll take the word of some obscure right wing publication over David Kay, the president's hand picked weapons inspector, and his successors. Because the president has no interest in claiming there were WMD -- only Regenery press will tell the truth.

It's sad, really, really sad. If only there was a 24 hour network dedicating to spouting republican talking points, we could get the word out

LJD, amazing isn't it - wil... (Below threshold)

LJD, amazing isn't it - willing to believe the enemy but not willing to believe the tons of nuclear material!

There are so many things wrong with Samuel's logic on so many levels. It is nothing but frustrating repetition based on fiction that manages to frustrate those of us who use the factual record to form our opinions!

Perfect example, Samuel says:

"This is proven by the fact that the Bush Administration and Blair are very embarassed about their previous claims in which which they lied about to the American, British, and world public."

Or the extreme overuse of the word, "lied"
DKK

Sorry, I meant to question ... (Below threshold)

Sorry, I meant to question Samuel's assertion that someone's embarassment proves anything?

"Innocent till proven blushing," I guess!
DKK

Ahhh, we all have out pet p... (Below threshold)
jocrazy0:

Ahhh, we all have out pet peeves when it comes to word misuse. For example: 'loosing' vesus 'losing' as in lose, losing, lost. One means "To release" , the other means "Not a winner". See Kevin's missive on "Godwin Wins In Virginia - Kaine Benefits" below.....

LJD, LifeTrek, it's <a href... (Below threshold)

LJD, LifeTrek, it's like I said yesterday:

Allegations BY the US are wrong until proven right -- and sometimes not even then.

Allegations AGAINST the US are right until proven wrong -- and sometimes even then.

Remember the Koran in the toilet tripe?

J.

And my second pet peeve is ... (Below threshold)
jocrazy0:

And my second pet peeve is 'Clicking the RIGHT FREEKING !#@$%# COMMENT LINK!!!' !#@$%^ drat. Sorry, this was supposed to go with the "The sounds of silliness" post. Another reason NOT to read blogs until I have had my third cup of coffee....

Here is the one thing I can... (Below threshold)
Corey:

Here is the one thing I can't get past. If this information is true, why isn't the Bush Admin jumping on it and getting the word out? What possible reason to they have to remain silent on this info? The only reason I can come up with is that they don't think this info is true.

The fact that I haven't heard a peep out of them about this makes me very skeptical.

Those who want to shut up t... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

Those who want to shut up the anti-war crowd, and crowded it is indeed becoming with a growing chorus of Republicans and veterans, are going to have to be presented with more visible signs of victory than the anarchy or near anarchy that exists in Iraq . As Bush says "Americans want a clear agenda." Don't bame those who are dissidents or who are raising doubts or in Jay's phrase 'whining' Americans were never promised a messy or unwinnable war. They were promised a "mission accomplished "cakewalk.
Stephen M. Walt academic dean at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government writes "In a democracy, a commander in chief who wants to go to war is responsible for building and maintaining public support for sending our sons and daughters into harm’s way. President Bush sold the war brilliantly before the fighting started, but his sales pitch could not survive the failure to find weapons of mass destruction, the embarrassing revelations of torture at Abu Ghraib, the bungled occupation, the mounting list of dead and wounded, and the rising economic toll. Most of all, this rationale highlights the conspicuous lack of a plausible theory of victory now. We are not losing because our troops lack public support. The war lacks support because we are losing." from the Blame Game

It's a miracle you dated a ... (Below threshold)
Oleg:

It's a miracle you dated a woman.

Heck, it's a miracle you dated.

Remind me when I have time ... (Below threshold)
foppa:

Remind me when I have time to find Steve Crickmore so I can beat his ass down.

Corey:I have been ... (Below threshold)
Kevin:

Corey:

I have been wondering the same thing, and it makes me skeptical as well. I can't imagine that the Admin would sit silent on this information when it has the potential to stop the "Bush Lied" crowd in their tracks.

anyone have any thoughts on this?

They were promised... (Below threshold)
They were promised a "mission accomplished "cakewalk.

Crick, you are a @#$!ing liar.

Very good book! I just fini... (Below threshold)

Very good book! I just finished it myself.

I have my own conspiracy theory about why Bush isn't responding: Scott McClellan is a Democratic plant! As far as I can tell, nothing that has been communicated to the press was done correctly; Bush probably has just given up on trying.

Can't someone murder Steve?... (Below threshold)
Hedgy:

Can't someone murder Steve?

Kevin and Corey,I ... (Below threshold)

Kevin and Corey,

I suspect that the White House is reticent to make any claims on this topic after having been burned so many times either by Joe Wilsonesque maneuvers or by a blatant refusal by the Left and the MSM to accept what can't be discredited.

I have my own conspiracy... (Below threshold)
Earl:

I have my own conspiracy theory about why Bush isn't responding: Scott McClellan is a Democratic plant! As far as I can tell, nothing that has been communicated to the press was done correctly; Bush probably has just given up on trying.

I suspect that the White House is reticent to make any claims on this topic after having been burned so many times either by Joe Wilsonesque maneuvers or by a blatant refusal by the Left and the MSM to accept what can't be discredited.

You guys are funny.

"We are not losing because ... (Below threshold)
Nicholas:

"We are not losing because our troops lack public support. The war lacks support because we are losing."

Well, if your only source of news is what you see on TV, then I suppose you might come to that conclusion.

On the other hand, if you actually bother to find out what's really going on, you'll know the truth. The Iraqi police and army are rapidly taking over the security of their country and 15 out of 18 provinces have peace and security for the first time in about 50 years.

As someone else pointed out... the allies lost more troops on D-day than in basically the whole Iraq war so far. If the US public was this squeamish back then, and as unwilling to finish what is started, we would have seen a retreat from Normandy...

Please don't lump me in wit... (Below threshold)
DaveD:

Please don't lump me in with Crickmore. Just another one of those folks who paints Bush as either diabolically evil (which implies in my mind a heightened level of intelligence) or a bumbling fool - whatever image suits their current criticism. But I too feel the same way a couple of others feel on this thread. The uranium is a pretty big deal. I am not sure why this has remained a relative secret if it is true.

Why has every instance of W... (Below threshold)
a4g:

Why has every instance of WMD been downplayed at every turn, so that even the facts don't seem quite real. Especially when trumpeting it would make me feel so much better? I don't know, but perhaps President Bush already explained:

Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign, unlike any other we have ever seen. It may include dramatic strikes, visible on TV, and covert operations, secret even in success.
a4g -- I'm afraid that's wi... (Below threshold)
Earl:

a4g -- I'm afraid that's wishful thinking. Remember at the beginning of the war, when people would loudly trump every unconfirmed report of WMDs? Back then they didn't feel a need to keep silent; there's no reason for them to do it now.

Secret? At the time of the ... (Below threshold)
John Anderson:

Secret? At the time of the mission, in a way, but published by the BBC is "secret?" Only in that it has not been headlined (or reported at all) by most news outlets.

I do not understand why it gets no mention by the Administration. Very little does, even if widely known.

For example, one of the things shown to the UN was passed over even during the presentation, and I've never seen it mentioned since. A picture of a new rocket-engine test bed was shown at the UN, contrasted with the existing one. The existing one had been used to develop the engine[s] used in Iraq's just-a-bit-more-powerful-than-allowed missile. A new one is understandable, and even being a bit larger: but the picture clearly showed the new test stand was not just twice the size of the old one, but over four times as large. Why? The question was not even asked, it was just showing that the regime was still developing new rockets - not a particularly damaging revelation, without the question of size.

Repeated finds of "pre-cursor" supplies get bare mention. Why would a small (under 800 men) installation - not a regional supply depot, just a small outpost - need a hundred fifty-five gallon drums of "insecticide"? Why would those drums be buried?

Oh Jay, I think you've fina... (Below threshold)

Oh Jay, I think you've finally lost it... There's a word on the web page you linked to that should have set off alarm bells: "Regnery" -- they are to respectable publishing what the "Left Behind" series is to serious literature. You might as well post a headline from the National Enquirer. I think a better source for your scholarship on the WMD "we found in Iraq" (snicker...sputter... sorry, suppressing that now...) would be the INSPECTOR WE SENT THERE TO LOOK, namely, David Kay. From your very own Medal of Freedom winner, George Tenet: http://www.cia.gov/cia/public_affairs/speeches/2004/tenet_georgetownspeech_02052004.html (cliff notes: no weapons). From Kay himself: http://www.cnn.com/2004/WORLD/meast/01/25/sprj.nirq.kay/ (cliff notes: no weapons). I could go on...

Your author's accounts of killer weed and bug pesticides aside, if we had found those kinds of stockpiles, WHAT WOULD BE THE POSSIBLE MOTIVE OF THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION TO CONCEAL IT? On the contrary, they'd have that information plastered all over Fox News and tattooed to Wolf Blitzer's forehead. If it were true.

It isn't. Your neocon brethren were wrong on WMD, in that Iraq had none.

Deal with it.

Love the blog, though :)

As stated above:<i... (Below threshold)
JEW:

As stated above:

If this information is true, why isn't the Bush Admin jumping on it and getting the word out?
I gotta say, Bush is my guy, and as much as I want to believe, I need to see more proof from a few more sources.

I don't know why Bush (or M... (Below threshold)
Synova:

I don't know why Bush (or McClellan or whomever) should bother to mention it. These aren't *secrets* after all. The information is public as far as I know, released in reports, etc., or even in (small) news articles.

If the people filtering our information do not count these finds as WMD or proof that Saddam was up to something, then who here honestly thinks that Bush claiming we found WMD's and evidence of them is going to make any difference?

The only thing that's going to happen is that the possible ways to define the finds as something else will be highlighted. It's all about balance, after all. If Bush declares that *these* chemicals stored in weapons bunkers next to missiles designed to deliver chemical weapons are proof of *anything* he's going to get called a liar, because although the chemicals are similar to WMD chemicals, they could also be used as pesticides. So there. Bush lied again.

I think he's smart to stay out of it. The finds are reported (and dismissed) without him being involved. People who don't conform to the Bush Lied religion have no doubt that Saddam was a Very Bad Man. The people who do hold Bush Lied as the central element of their understanding of Life and the Universe, will redefine the finds to that they somehow "don't count"... they will, and they do. *Bush* holding a press conference isn't going to change that.

Under the terms of Iraq'... (Below threshold)
ahem:

Under the terms of Iraq's surrender in 1991, they had to convincingly prove that they had none. Ergo, they violated those terms and the invasion was justified.

Prove that you don't rape small children, Jay Tea. Ergo, you're a rapist pedophile, and should be arrested.

Rhetoric aside, the nuclear materials were under IAEA seal, and remained under seal, even though the facilities were unsecured by the invading US forces (unlike, say, the Oil Ministry); and the gas shells were almost certainly looted from documented pre-1991 dumps (also left unsecured). Now STFU.

I don't know why Bush (o... (Below threshold)
Corey:

I don't know why Bush (or McClellan or whomever) should bother to mention it.

Seriously, you don't?

This administration is suffering from a huge credibility problem with close to 50% of the nation. They just had numerous issues in the news that were nothing but PR disasters for them (Meirs, Plame, Katrina). They are starting to see the support of their own party start to slip. If ever there was a time when the Bush Admin had a reason to hold a press conference and point out these multiple WMD discoveries, it is right now.

The basic reason I keep hearing is that "even if he told people, the crazy liberals wouldn't believe him, and then they'd call him a liar". So what? The left is already doing that. I hardly think that he would keep this a secret so to avoid being insulted by the Michael Moore crowd.

ahem: and you have verifie... (Below threshold)
-S-:

ahem: and you have verified that those realities existed? You were there, inspected those conditions, are reporting what you witnessed?

The reason many of us reduce this issue to "STFU" is because most among the 'antiwar' crowd uses the issue of 'war' to supplant resentments, unhappiness, discontent and other emotionally fueled disarray and conflict without regard for who and how their words harm.

The people in service to our country need our support. Primarily, the "antiwar" crowd is selfish and without concern for the results of the words they use and the actions they take. And, if information could be read and accepted, they'd read and accept but in my experience, no amount of information will make a man/woman with a molotov cocktail in his hand suddenly put it down and hug his neighbor.

I was reading -- gads, even the ultra liberal GUARDIAN -- a moment ago the varioius statements of some of those rioting/pillaging/murdering in France and they explain their reasons as being based in "hate," and otherwise reveal themselves to be disturbed persons. The employment possibilities, other conditions, those are just excuses used -- same as "the war" is used by some in the U.S. today -- to act out troubled psychology. The war, employment, etc., whatever, those are just tickets to ride to pillage.

I have only one useful hand... (Below threshold)
-S-:

I have only one useful hand at the moment and thus, the typos.

Let's see,How many... (Below threshold)

Let's see,

How many links showing proof that the information in the original post was incorrect have been put in this comment thread?

On the other hand, we've seen baseless allegations against our troops (napalm, for one), attacks upon the publishing house that had the nerve to print and distribute the book (as opposed to "censorship" one would presume), and we've been instructed that "STFU" is the language of totalitarian regimes (obviously with an exception to that rule if the acronym comes from a liberal).

On the contrary, when reports of NBC components do filter into the MSM coverage, they're summarily dismissed by the anti-war crowd, nevermind that a teaspoon of sarin would have been justification for U.N. action--and you don't "whip up" just a teaspoon of that agent.

So what we're left with is confirmations that some quantities of WMDs were actually found in Iraq, assertations that there were more findings that weren't reported, and a whole lot of squealing, misdirection, and venom (and, notably, absolutely nothing more) from the crowd whose agenda would suffer most greatly from their discovery.

It essentially wouldn't matter to most of the anti-war crowd if our troops uncovered a couple hundred Nuclear-equipped, armed, and targeted ICBMs in Iraq. They'd still be harping the same tired old memes.

Of course, they'd still be looking as foolish as ever, so that's probably not entirely a bad thing.

Don't worry Bo, when the ot... (Below threshold)
LJD:

Don't worry Bo, when the other shoe drops maybe we can talk the moonbats into mass suicide to overcome the total lack of purpose in their lives.

Synova -- your argument is,... (Below threshold)

Synova -- your argument is, the admnistration shouldn't bother to make the one case that could save them from ignomy because the meanies in the press don't listen to the president and won't let the good news out? Are you serious???

LJD, what's the other shoe?... (Below threshold)

LJD, what's the other shoe? A new Regnery book claiming Saddam really did bomb us with a nuclear-tipped wooden drone made from Nigerian yellowcake? My God, LEAVE THE CULT already...!

ahem, not a bad analogy. Bu... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

ahem, not a bad analogy. But to make it a smidgen more accurate:

"Jay Tea, you've been convicted of raping small children. As a condition of your parole, you must let police enter and search your house or car at any time, with no warning, to look for children, toys, kiddie porn, excess candy, job applications for day care centers, or anything else that would facilitate you offending again. If you refuse, you're going back to jail."

Saddam had already been convicted in the eyes of the world. He was violating the terms of his 1991 surrender -- all the justification needed to resume the war.

J.

You all seem so sure that t... (Below threshold)
LJD:

You all seem so sure that there are NO WMDs. (BTW, are we talking about before, during, or after the invasion? Are we talking about in Iraq, Iran? In Syria?) A constantly moving target to support your deeply entrenched perspective for an unjust and unnecessary war....

They don't exist because your talking heads have so enthusiastically pronounced it. Becasue any discovery in not a large enough quantity, not the correct type, not potent enough. The truth is, we may never REALLY know, or we may (hopefully not) find out the hard way.

Open your eyes. Contradicting the President is not a foreign policy. Who's in the cult now?

Am I serious?If Bu... (Below threshold)
Synova:

Am I serious?

If Bush was keeping a secret, that would be different.

What you're (whoever does it) saying is that news reporters who have ignored reports of chemical or nuclear related finds are going to suddenly slap their foreheads and go "duh!" just because G.W.Bush gets up in a press conference and says, "This is what we found. This is what it means. I was right, neener neener."

Probably it wouldn't do him any *harm* to do so, but I don't see how it would do him any good either.

Senator Carl Levin:<p... (Below threshold) S -- you're quoting a membe... (Below threshold)

S -- you're quoting a member of Congress who was reacting to briefings given to him by the administration and George "Slam Dunk" Tenet before the war... how does that prove that weapons were found AFTER the war...??? I can't believe intelligent people still buy this stuff...

S:Your Levin quote... (Below threshold)
Corey:

S:

Your Levin quote is almost exactly what I would want to see. Here is a high ranking politician - of the opposition party no less - saying that there were WMDs found in Iraq. But, much like the author of the article you linked to, I have the same comeback:

Really? I'd like to see it.

I didn't see that Levin acutally backed up that statement (granted, I didn't read the whole interview)

That would be exactly what you would need for a STFU statement. Somebody with access to the info and a reputation/job at stake, saying definitively "Here is your evidence. Look at it. Examine it. It's right there, no doubt about it." The original article offers "proof" buy an author who is trying to get me to buy his book.

It wouldn't even have to be Bush. It could be any member of his Admin, a general, a senator.... That would carry a lot of weight with me, and I think it would with a good chunk of the country. Granted, you're going to have a segment of people who will doubt the claim no matter what, but that shouldn't be a reason not to state and defend something that you know is true.

I always seem to get to the... (Below threshold)
RightWingLiberal:

I always seem to get to the good discussions late. At least I'm timely for the Ashlee Simpson threads! Anywho.

If the anti war crowd truely believes war is bad (what kinda nut thinks killing people and nation building is bad??) then they should not STFU until the war has ended.

-S-,Of course, Lev... (Below threshold)
Peter F.:

-S-,

Of course, Levin doesn't believe there was any collaboration between AQ and Iraq ("no formal collaborative relationship" even though the facts mete out to the contrary), and still peddles that nonsense to the media lapdogs who don't bother to question him. Except for Stephen Hayes over at the Weekly Standard.

At best, Levin is inconsistent; at worst, he's an unfailing, misleading partisan hack. Just be careful in quoting anything from him is all I'm saying.

JReid:Now there's ... (Below threshold)
Peter F.:

JReid:

Now there's a familiar meme: So we don't find WMDs after invading Iraq, therefore the must not have existed at all. Correct? Hogwash.

Synova:

Good point. Furthermore, it's more than likely given the batiness of the Left that no one would or would have believed Bush even if WMDs had been found. I'm sure some crackpot conspiracy theories would have arose around how they were "planted" there by our troops and other such nonsense. It's a damn good hypothetical example of a Catch-22, in my opinion.

No Jay, ahem's analogy was ... (Below threshold)
Mark:

No Jay, ahem's analogy was ridiculous.

A better analogy would be, "prove you don't have candy in your pocket. If you don't show us the contents of your pocket, we must assume (based on past experience and the UN resolutions) that is because you are hiding candy."

Saddam could easily have emptied his pocket, proven his point, and walked away. Conversely, disproving pedophilia or other subjective states of mind cannot be done conclusively because even a total absence of evidence does not suffice.

JReid, loved the link. Your... (Below threshold)
Veeshir:

JReid, loved the link. Your cliff-notes were a little sparse. Let's flesh it out some more.
My summary view, based on what I've seen, is we're very unlikely to find large stockpiles of weapons," he said on National Public Radio's "Weekend Edition." "I don't think they exist."
operative words: Large stockpiles.

Let's see if there's anything else in there relevant.
Despite not finding any WMD, Kay said his team found that the Iraqi senior leadership "had an intention to continue to pursue their WMD activities. That they, in fact, had a large number of WMD-related activities."
A large number of WMD-related activities.

Hmmm, your link seems to prove what Jay was saying. Is there anything else useful in there for us? Let's check...
"There is ample evidence of movement to Syria before the war -- satellite photographs, reports on the ground of a constant stream of trucks, cars, rail traffic across the border. We simply don't know what was moved," Kay said.
But, he said, "the Syrian government there has shown absolutely no interest in helping us resolve this issue."

I know, when he disagrees with you he's lying. When you misread the article it's the gospel truth.

Sorry, one more quote, I ju... (Below threshold)
Veeshir:

Sorry, one more quote, I just can't resist.
Asked if Iraq posed an imminent threat to the United States at the time of the invasion, Kay said, "Based on the intelligence that existed, I think it was reasonable to reach the conclusion that Iraq posed an imminent threat."

Well, at least he agrees with John Edwards
I think Iraq is the most serious and imminent threat to our country.

I can't understand why Bush didn't think Iraq was an imminent threat.

Some have said we must not act until the threat is imminent.

I know you're being facetio... (Below threshold)
Peter F.:

I know you're being facetious, Veeshir, it isn't lost on me. But isn't fun to see how even Kay and Edwards can't seem to grasp the concept of preemption correctly, either? I'm more suprised by Kay than I am Edwards; and Kay sounds like he was responding to a question at a commitee meeting so I'll cut him so slack. But Edwards just flatout misquotes Bush.

If the threat was indeed imminent there would be no question as to whether we should or shouldn't attack.

Edwards wasn't quoting Bush... (Below threshold)
Veeshir:

Edwards wasn't quoting Bush, he was giving his own opinion, as was Kay.
I just always point that out whenever some lefty throws that article out there without reading it.

"So does this book get igno... (Below threshold)
Chris:

"So does this book get ignored by MSM because it comes from Regnery Press?"

To a large extent, yes. How many times a day do we read on right wing blogs that information printed in the MSM can be dismissed out of hand because it's in the MSM? I've even seen people say "As soon as I see it's from the Associated Press I stop reading." Yet when something is published by a known right wing attack machine publishing house, we're supposed to give it the fair and balanced treatment? I don't think so. The MSM also provides Novak, Krauthammer, Will, Brooks and a host of other conservative columnists with a forum. Regnery has published enough garbage that I don't give them any credibility.

As for the notion that Bush doesn't let people know about the WMD we found in Iraq because the press wouldn't believe him, well all I can say is you guys have lost the right to call anyone a moonbat. I realize not everyone on this thread is saying that, but the gingerly way in which people are responding is a hoot. Why don't you come out and say it? That's one of the stupidest ideas I've ever heard. You really believe that if the White House came out and said "We have found large stockpiles of WMD in Iraq" the media would refuse to print it because they hate Bush? Please.

And as for the question why Saddam would say he had WMDs when he didn't, I don't profess to know the workings of his twisted mind. But is it so hard to believe that ehe would want Iran to think he had these weapons? Seems pretty basic to me.

A huge difference in the debate that gets glossed over is what we mean when we say WMD. There's a big difference between chemical weapons that can be used in a localized way and nuclear weapons that can be used against the US. While there was a fair amount of agreement in the years before the invasion that Saddam had chemical weapons, it was the nuclear side that Bush and Cheney pushed really hard, dwpite growing evidence that he had almost no nuclear weapons program. Do you really think if the public was told that we were going into Iraq because Saddam had chemical weapons that he could use against his own people, or Iran, the public would have supported it? Especially if they knew there was no connection between Saddam and al Qaeda (another fact Bush did his best to mislead the public about.) All the bullshit about mushroom clouds and long distance drone airplanes were part of a campaign to mislead the public, and that's what people are finally tuning into.

So now is some brave commenter going to threaten to beat me down or kill me? I noice how easily that kind of talk is accepted, as well.

Chris:I agree with... (Below threshold)
Mark:

Chris:

I agree with you about the silliness you brought up in your first three paragraphs.

But I've got to disagree with your last paragraph. Can you name one person in the US who really believed Saddam posed a direct and immediate threat to U.S. soil? Did people really expect Iraqi missles nuking New York and LA and Kansas? Did the administration even tell us that was real and imminent? I don't recall that, but many moonbats now claim to have been duped.

I certainly never believed any of that, but I supported the Iraq war in the context of the global war on terror. There were plenty of valid and rational reasons to invade. Most who claim to have been duped are being disingenuous since they were against the war from the outset. How can one claim to be tricked if they never believed?

How many times a day do ... (Below threshold)
Veeshir:

How many times a day do we read on right wing blogs that information printed in the MSM can be dismissed out of hand because it's in the MSM?
You're reading the wrong blogs. The ones I like say, "The MSM is at it again. Here's my analysis on why they're lying scumbags."
In other words, they address the points. Now, if you're talking about the 50th time they trumpet the above linked CNN article about Kay as proving that Saddam was no threat, well, I understand dismissing that out of hand. I only touched it because I was bored and it's very easy.

Especially if they knew ... (Below threshold)
Peter F.:

Especially if they knew there was no connection between Saddam and al Qaeda (another fact Bush did his best to mislead the public about.)

I call bullshit on your bullshit. Clinton believed the same "bullshit" as Bush did, only a few years earlier. Moreover, in further reporting by Stephen Hayes at the Weekly Standard from last year, the relationship between AQ and Saddam's Iraq was decidedly active. I would urge you to read the memo sent to Senators Roberts and Rockefeller here. And if that's not enough, read Hayes' book "The Connection: How Al Qaeda's Relationship with Saddam Hussein Has Endangered America." (Those links will likely require registration.)

And before you dismiss the WS and Hayes' reporting, I would point out that Hayes and Thomas Jocelyn (also of the WS) are about the only reporters I know of that are even coming close to a public in-depth examination of the relationship between AQ and Iraq.

Oh, and Ansar al-Islam, founded in Jaunary 2002 in Northern Iraq, was funded by both AQ and Saddam to suppress the Kurds. And Abu Musab Zarqawi was the connection in founding AAI shortly after he fled to Iraq from Afghanistan, also in January 2002.

"Old wiley Osama would like boogie to Baghdad..." if we attack his camps in Afghanistan. Who said that? None other than Richard Clarke in 1998. Guess he believed in bullshit, too; probably because he had, too. That's what he was reporting to Clinton and Comapny.

Bottom line - the left has ... (Below threshold)

Bottom line - the left has gone to every extreme to make sure the world doesn't believe we are in a worldwide war! Tony Blair can't even get anti-terror laws passed a mere 4 months after they were attacked!

Iraq is and always has been a front in the war on terror just as Afghanistan was.

Change is difficult, especially when your own CIA and State Dept. are firmly against that change. The owner of the upset apple cart can be mighty dangerous when he is armed with a megaphone and lies.
DKK

Reid: again, I write here,... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Reid: again, I write here, you've discussed the source of Levin's references, knowledge with him? Senator Levin has shared with you the full range of information he refers to, as to when he knew what and from whom he learned it?

No, you haven't. You no more can state with any reliability that I'm -- by copying that quote from Levin -- referring to information Levin learned pre-war from Tenet than you can, well, challenge the context of what he's now saying. I note that the article makes a blasted HEADLINE out of noting that Levin -- I paraphrase here -- appears to know something that no one else knows or at least Levin isn't sharing as to how he knows what he knows, what enables him to categorically affirm the presence of WMD in possession of SH.

Something I find interesting is the few sources that support the argument (that "there were no WMD" in SH's possession/control/purview" prior to our war declaration) is the ever wiggly Joe Wilson. Oh, and first John Kerry said there were before he then said there weren't, right before he later added that there were but then he reconsidered.

You have no substance to support the "no WMD" meme other than paranoia, fears and resentments.

Oh, I forgot the other supp... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Oh, I forgot the other support reference for the meme of "there were no WMD," and that's Saddam Hussein. He's still flagging that around, even as we speak, along with that he's "still the President of Iraq."

I have so much information to the contrary about each of those denials, by the way, as do many others (here, elsewhere). As (also) written earlier, to those of you clinging to the "there were no WMD" meme, no amount of information will ever get through to you. Thus, it's just easier to respond to the memers: STFU. You have a one-way announcement qeued and repeating, and repeating, and repeating...the needle, it is stuck. Thus, people like to just pull the plug every so often and get on with things.

Regarding those mobile biol... (Below threshold)
George:

Regarding those mobile biological weapon laboratories, despite the fact that no one can show they were used for biological weapons, no one can show that they were used for the other claimed purpose of generating helium either. Iraqi military officials said they never used helium on the range as suggested.

My opinion is that Saddam was amassing a huge collection of dual-use materials. He could claim they had a legitimate use but they could quickly and easily be switched over for WMD uses.

We have a similar story with the aluminum tubes. Given the amazingly high level of tolerances that were being specified, it wasn't hard to suspect they were being used for illicit uranium enrichment centrifuges. Others claim they were being used for rockets. While Iraq did use aluminum casings for rockets, none of these high-spec casings were ever found in a rocket. Furthermore, Iraq was pursuing these aluminum tubes in secret outside of the requirements of the UN sanctions. Why was this necessary for conventional weapons parts? No matter how you look at it, obtaining the tubes was a material breach of the UN sanctions.

Again, in my opinion, Saddam was using dual-use materials in an attempt to hide his genuine plans of pursuing WMDs.

Its time for the antiwar cr... (Below threshold)
BIRDZILLA:

Its time for the antiwar crowd to go home throw their chicken footprint signs in the trash and make themselves useful

MarkThe administra... (Below threshold)
Chris:

Mark

The administration was actively trying to convince people that Saddam was a threat to this country. Repeated phrases like "A smoking gun in the form of a mushroom cloud," and "fighting them over there so we don't have to fight them over here," certainly led people to believe that we were in danger of atack. Stories about drone planes equipped to deliver biological agents to our shores didn't help, either. And by drawing connections between 9/11 and Iraq, people were led to believe that Iraq had already attacked us. And no, I can't name anyone who believed that, but then I don't hang around with a lot of Republicans :).

Peter F., Clinton may have believed there was a connection between Iraq and al Qaeda, but your link doesn't establish that. He bombed a plant in Sudan that was alleged to be making chemical weapons and had ties to bin Laden. There were reports that the plant manager made phone calls to Iraq. The link you provided goes to an article by Stephen Hayes, who is a partisan with an agenda, not an unbiased reporter. He tries to connect somne very tenuous threads, but it's clear that Clinton bombed the plant because of the connection with bin Laden, since he bombed bin Laden's camps in Afghanistan the same day.

And I'm sure you're very impressed with Stephen Hayes, but has it occurred to you that the reason "Hayes and Thomas Jocelyn (also of the WS) are about the only reporters I know of that are even coming close to a public in-depth examination of the relationship between AQ and Iraq," is because they have a vested interest in proving their point? Most reporters don't spend a whole lot of time trying to prove something they don't believe to be true. If there's one reporter out there who's still trying to find the real killer of OJ's wife, does that give him extra credibility because he's the only one still investigating?

And the article he wrote for the Weekly Standard, which the magazine laughably headlined "Case Closed," was based in a large part on a leaked memo from Douglas Feith to the Senate Intelligence Committee, allegedly tying up all of the threads into a bombshell case for the connection between bin Laden and Iraq. Problem is, it was more of a bomb than a bombshell (you may be the last person still referencing it.) The memo was a mish mosh of every rumor and discredited report that had come over the transom, all neatly gathered by Feith (who was famously referred to by Tommy Franks as "the fucking stupidest guy on the face of the earth.") But don't take my word for it. You might want to read this press release from the Department of Defense, which immediately rushed to clarify the purpose of the memo:
http://www.dod.gov/releases/2003/nr20031115-0642.html

Jesus, Feith worked for the DOD and they wouldn't even stand behind him. I thinkm you'll find that article has been pretty much blown out of the water.

doubt anyone will see this,... (Below threshold)
sean nyc:

doubt anyone will see this, but that "enriched uranium" was left over from the osiraq nuclear reactor destroyed by israeli aircraft back in the eighties. and "enriched" just means a higher percentage of U235 (about 0.7% naturally, 3.5% for energy production, and 10% needed for weapons-grade, the rest is mainly U238). so have tons of "enriched uranium" does nothing if its not weapons grade. that is the argument for the aluminium tubes that condi was hyping. they could use those to enrich the uranium they already had. but it was proven that those tubes were not meant for uranium enrichment.

and its also possible that the chemical weapons that were found were given to saddam back in the 80's by the US in the war with iran. linking that site which give no specifics just opens the door to possibilities such as this. its doubtful that this is the case, but using this site as proof is pretty pathetic.

Chris:Let me get t... (Below threshold)
Peter F.:

Chris:

Let me get this out of the way first: Your trite, condescending tone proves that the biggest partisan hack here is you. Your arguments, if you can call them that, are tired and sorry bits of left-wing tripe that have been thoroughly debunked over and over. Moreover, you've proven yourself time and again to be so completely closed-minded that I sincerely doubt you read any of the articles; your flip dismal of the connections as being "tenuous" almost screams it.

For all of your protestations over Hayes "who is a partisan with an agenda, not an unbiased reporter", you do little to disprove his report. And I really like to what parts of the report that have been "discredited". You can make that statement but you better back it up first.

Did you ever stop to think the DOD might just be a tad embarrassed that the CIA was making connections when the DOD could not, hence the memo? No, probably note. A press release hardly qualifies as a "bombshell"; it's defensive media posturing on the part of the DOD. It's reactive and only vaguely hinted at the very end as being possibly illegal; and seeing how Feith still has his job in light of this "bombshell" the legality inference by the DOD is pathetic. It could even be construed as a hit piece by the DOD against a former employee. In the end, it's a really doc. to reference.

Tommy Franks is entitled to his opinion about Feith, but it proves nothing in your argument; only that Franks doesn't like Feith. So what?

That's just daft, Jay!... (Below threshold)
cat:

That's just daft, Jay!

Let's take look at these claims.

"In a secret operation on June 23, 2004, U.S. forces seized 1.77 metric tons of enriched uranium¡ªthe kind used to make fuel for atomic bombs"

The uranium "seized" at Tuwaitha in 2004 had been known about since 1991. After the Gulf War, all of Iraq's highly enriched uranium and plutonium was removed from Iraq. The lightly enriched uranium at Tuwaitha was sealed by the IAEA and regularly inspected to make sure none of it had been removed. In January 2002, the IAEA once again confirmed that "none of the material had been tampered with in any way."

During the 2003 invasion, great emphasis was put on securing Iraq's oil wells. But astonishingly, although the exact location and quantity of Iraq's uranium was known, the Tuwaitha facility was not secured and as Saddam Hussein's regime collapsed, the facility was looted:

"Seals on warehouse doors were broken and uranium containers were later found in nearby villages storing milk or water. There have been subsequent reports of radiation sickness."

By June 2003, "most" of the missing uranium had been found. The use of the word "most" is slightly disturbing.

Finally, in 2004, the US removed the uranium from Iraq. It was not some previously unknown cache hidden from inspectors. This was not a "secret operation" and the uranium was not "seized." Tuwaitha had been a sealed and annually inspected site since 1991. The only time it became a risk was at the time of the invasion.

So much for the non-news about nuclear materials.

Now, on to the Polish discovery of the chemical warheads. Initial tests did indeed indicate that some of the warheads contained traces of cyclosarin. But further tests showed that they "were all empty and tested negative for any type of chemicals."

So that story's a complete failure.

Then there was the IED that did contain usable sarin. This, at least, is not a complete distortion of the facts, unlike the first two claims. It was a binary shell - keeping the primary chemicals separated from each other until it was fired. So, unlike most of Saddam's chemical weapons, this one had not degraded. But since around 10 percent of of these shells failed to detonate, the most likely explanation for its continued existence is that it was a dud used during the Iraq-Iran war. The same goes for the mustard gas shell, which had in any case degraded beyond any military usefulness.

So what about the chemical weapons production discovered in Mosul in August? This was a supected insurgent hideout It would certainly seem to be the case that some of the insurgents are trying to make chemical weapons (note: fortunately, they haven't succeeded yet). This is a worrying development, but the US military said the lab was new - and had been set up after the fall of Saddam Hussein.

So what does Richard Miniter say about this?

"The intelligence community remains divided over the origin of those chemical weapons (either from inside Iraq or outside) and whether they were made during Saddam¡¯s regime or after."

This would seem to be a complete distortion of the facts. These were not "chemical weapons," they were chemicals that insurgents were trying to use to make chemical weapons. And there cannot be any doubt that this lab post-dated Saddam's regime. One thing we all agree on is that Saddam's regime knew how to make chemical weapons. If this warehouse predated 2003, why the hell had they still failed to produce anything that worked?

Jay, this whole thing is as weak as Alex Jones' black helicopters over at Prison Planet. Is the rest of Miniter's book this bad?

Test - pls ignore.... (Below threshold)
cat:

Test - pls ignore.

Ah, I see I'm allowed to po... (Below threshold)
cat:

Ah, I see I'm allowed to post again, after being blocked for the last 24 hours. Maybe it's a software problem. Anyway, here's what I tried to say yesterday:

That's just daft, Jay!

Let's take look at these claims.

"In a secret operation on June 23, 2004, U.S. forces seized 1.77 metric tons of enriched uranium¡ªthe kind used to make fuel for atomic bombs"

The uranium "seized" at Tuwaitha in 2004 had been known about since 1991. After the Gulf War, all of Iraq's highly enriched uranium and plutonium was removed from Iraq. The lightly enriched uranium at Tuwaitha was sealed by the IAEA and regularly inspected to make sure none of it had been removed. In January 2002, the IAEA once again confirmed that "none of the material had been tampered with in any way."

During the 2003 invasion, great emphasis was put on securing Iraq's oil wells. But astonishingly, although the exact location and quantity of Iraq's uranium was known, the Tuwaitha facility was not secured and as Saddam Hussein's regime collapsed, the facility was looted:

"Seals on warehouse doors were broken and uranium containers were later found in nearby villages storing milk or water. There have been subsequent reports of radiation sickness."

By June 2003, "most" of the missing uranium had been found. The use of the word "most" is slightly disturbing.

Finally, in 2004, the US removed the uranium from Iraq. It was not some previously unknown cache hidden from inspectors. This was not a "secret operation" and the uranium was not "seized." Tuwaitha had been a sealed and annually inspected site since 1991. The only time it became a risk was at the time of the invasion.

So much for the non-news about nuclear materials.

Now, on to the Polish discovery of the chemical warheads. Initial tests did indeed indicate that some of the warheads contained traces of cyclosarin. But further tests showed that they "were all empty and tested negative for any type of chemicals."

So that story's a complete failure.

Then there was the IED that did contain usable sarin. This, at least, is not a complete distortion of the facts, unlike the first two claims. It was a binary shell - keeping the primary chemicals separated from each other until it was fired. So, unlike most of Saddam's chemical weapons, this one had not degraded. But since around 10 percent of of these shells failed to detonate, the most likely explanation for its continued existence is that it was a dud used during the Iraq-Iran war. The same goes for the mustard gas shell, which had in any case degraded beyond any military usefulness.

So what about the chemical weapons production discovered in Mosul in August? This was a supected insurgent hideout It would certainly seem to be the case that some of the insurgents are trying to make chemical weapons (note: fortunately, they haven't succeeded yet). This is a worrying development, but the US military said the lab was new - and had been set up after the fall of Saddam Hussein.

So what does Richard Miniter say about this?

"The intelligence community remains divided over the origin of those chemical weapons (either from inside Iraq or outside) and whether they were made during Saddam¡¯s regime or after."

This is total distortion of the facts - read the two articles linked above. These were not "chemical weapons," they were chemicals that insurgents were trying to use to make chemical weapons. And there cannot be any doubt that this lab post-dated Saddam's regime. One thing we all agree on is that Saddam's regime knew how to make chemical weapons. If this warehouse predated 2003, why the hell had they still failed to produce anything that worked?

Jay, this whole thing is as weak as Alex Jones' black helicopters over at Prison Planet. I'm astonished that you could base an argument on such a wilful distortion of the truth. Is the rest of Miniter's book this bad?

test 2 ... (Below threshold)
cat:

test 2

Let's take look at Miniter'... (Below threshold)
cat:

Let's take look at Miniter's claims.

"In a secret operation on June 23, 2004, U.S. forces seized 1.77 metric tons of enriched uranium¡ªthe kind used to make fuel for atomic bombs"

The uranium "seized" at Tuwaitha in 2004 had been known about since 1991. After the Gulf War, all of Iraq's highly enriched uranium and plutonium was removed from Iraq. The lightly enriched uranium at Tuwaitha was sealed by the IAEA and regularly inspected to make sure none of it had been removed. In January 2002, the IAEA once again confirmed that "none of the material had been tampered with in any way."

During the 2003 invasion, great emphasis was put on securing Iraq's oil wells. But astonishingly, although the exact location and quantity of Iraq's uranium was known, the Tuwaitha facility was not secured and as Saddam Hussein's regime collapsed, the facility was looted:

"Seals on warehouse doors were broken and uranium containers were later found in nearby villages storing milk or water. There have been subsequent reports of radiation sickness."

By June 2003, "most" of the missing uranium had been found. The use of the word "most" is slightly disturbing.

Finally, in 2004, the US removed the uranium from Iraq. It was not some previously unknown cache hidden from inspectors. This was not a "secret operation" and the uranium was not "seized." Tuwaitha had been a sealed and annually inspected site since 1991. The only time it became a risk was at the time of the invasion.

So much for the non-news about nuclear materials.

Now, on to the Polish discovery of the chemical warheads. Initial tests did indeed indicate that some of the warheads contained traces of cyclosarin. But further tests showed that they "were all empty and tested negative for any type of chemicals."

So that story's a complete failure.

Then there was the IED that did contain usable sarin. This, at least, is not a complete distortion of the facts, unlike the first two claims. It was a binary shell - keeping the primary chemicals separated from each other until it was fired. So, unlike most of Saddam's chemical weapons, this one had not degraded. But since around 10 percent of of these shells failed to detonate, the most likely explanation for its continued existence is that it was a dud used during the Iraq-Iran war. The same goes for the mustard gas shell, which had in any case degraded beyond any military usefulness.

So what about the chemical weapons production discovered in Mosul in August? This was a supected insurgent hideout It would certainly seem to be the case that some of the insurgents are trying to make chemical weapons (note: fortunately, they haven't succeeded yet). This is a worrying development, but the US military said the lab was new - and had been set up after the fall of Saddam Hussein.

So what does Richard Miniter say about this?

"The intelligence community remains divided over the origin of those chemical weapons (either from inside Iraq or outside) and whether they were made during Saddam¡¯s regime or after."

This is total distortion of the facts - read the two articles linked above. These were not "chemical weapons," they were chemicals that insurgents were trying to use to make chemical weapons. And there cannot be any doubt that this lab post-dated Saddam's regime. One thing we all agree on is that Saddam's regime knew how to make chemical weapons. If this warehouse predated 2003, why the hell had they still failed to produce anything that worked?

This whole argument is as weak as Alex Jones' black helicopters over at Prison Planet. Is the rest of Miniter's book this bad?

Hmm. If I post "test - pls ... (Below threshold)
cat:

Hmm. If I post "test - pls ignore" or "test 2" it goes onto your site immediately. But if I try to post a real message all I get is:

"Thank You for Commenting
Your comment has been received. To protect against malicious comments, I have enabled a feature that allows your comments to be held for approval the first time you post a comment. I'll approve your comment when convenient; there is no need to re-post your comment. Return to the comment page"

Not the first time this has happened. Will this comment be allowed on the site, I wonder. And if it is, why can't I post what I really want to say?

Yes, that went through OK. ... (Below threshold)
cat:

Yes, that went through OK. So now, I'll try yet again to post what I originally wanted to:


Let's take look at Miniter's claims.

"In a secret operation on June 23, 2004, U.S. forces seized 1.77 metric tons of enriched uranium¡ªthe kind used to make fuel for atomic bombs"

The uranium "seized" at Tuwaitha in 2004 had been known about since 1991. After the Gulf War, all of Iraq's highly enriched uranium and plutonium was removed from Iraq. The lightly enriched uranium at Tuwaitha was sealed by the IAEA and regularly inspected to make sure none of it had been removed. In January 2002, the IAEA once again confirmed that "none of the material had been tampered with in any way."

During the 2003 invasion, great emphasis was put on securing Iraq's oil wells. But astonishingly, although the exact location and quantity of Iraq's uranium was known, the Tuwaitha facility was not secured and as Saddam Hussein's regime collapsed, the facility was looted:

"Seals on warehouse doors were broken and uranium containers were later found in nearby villages storing milk or water. There have been subsequent reports of radiation sickness."

By June 2003, "most" of the missing uranium had been found. The use of the word "most" is slightly disturbing.

Finally, in 2004, the US removed the uranium from Iraq. It was not some previously unknown cache hidden from inspectors. This was not a "secret operation" and the uranium was not "seized." Tuwaitha had been a sealed and annually inspected site since 1991. The only time it became a risk was at the time of the invasion.

So much for the non-news about nuclear materials.

Now, on to the Polish discovery of the chemical warheads. Initial tests did indeed indicate that some of the warheads contained traces of cyclosarin. But further tests showed that they "were all empty and tested negative for any type of chemicals."

So that story's a complete failure.

Then there was the IED that did contain usable sarin. This, at least, is not a complete distortion of the facts, unlike the first two claims. It was a binary shell - keeping the primary chemicals separated from each other until it was fired. So, unlike most of Saddam's chemical weapons, this one had not degraded. But since around 10 percent of of these shells failed to detonate, the most likely explanation for its continued existence is that it was a dud used during the Iraq-Iran war. The same goes for the mustard gas shell, which had in any case degraded beyond any military usefulness.

So what about the chemical weapons production discovered in Mosul in August? This was a supected insurgent hideout It would certainly seem to be the case that some of the insurgents are trying to make chemical weapons (note: fortunately, they haven't succeeded yet). This is a worrying development, but the US military said the lab was new - and had been set up after the fall of Saddam Hussein.

So what does Richard Miniter say about this?

"The intelligence community remains divided over the origin of those chemical weapons (either from inside Iraq or outside) and whether they were made during Saddam¡¯s regime or after."

This is total distortion of the facts - read the two articles linked above. These were not "chemical weapons," they were chemicals that insurgents were trying to use to make chemical weapons. And there cannot be any doubt that this lab post-dated Saddam's regime. One thing we all agree on is that Saddam's regime knew how to make chemical weapons. If this warehouse predated 2003, why the hell had they still failed to produce anything that worked?

This whole argument is as weak as Alex Jones' black helicopters over at Prison Planet. Is the rest of Miniter's book this bad?

Yes, that went up immediate... (Below threshold)
cat:

Yes, that went up immediately. But, yet again, my real comment on the subject of this thread was rejected by that "feature that allows your comments to be held for approval the first time you post a comment."

A very strange feature, since this clearly wasn't the first time I posted (or tried to post) a comment.

Every one of the those Huma... (Below threshold)

Every one of the those Human Events claims can be link sourced to MSM stories. I did that here:

The "No WMD" Lie--
http://www.bizzyblog.com/?p=733

Sources like WaPo, CNN, AP, Fox.

Cat, you've discovered one ... (Below threshold)

Cat, you've discovered one of the top-secret features of the New And Improved Wizbang: The Right Wing Whacko Truth Deflector Shields(tm, patent pending). Whenever someone tries to post something so true, that utterly shreds our fascist fantasies and delusions, it is automatically rejected and our fragile egos and illusions are spared. It helps preserve the Echo Chamber Effect (tm), where we only have to deal with those people who tell us how brilliant and handsome and wonderful we are.

Alternately, if the Deflector failed, the anti-spam filters might have been tripped if you put too many URLs and links into the comment, holding it in the "pending" queue until someone with editorial privileges digs it out of the several hundred spam comments the site receives on a daily basis and approves it.

Which answer is correct? I'll let you decide.

J.

Now I understand, Jay - yes... (Below threshold)
cat:

Now I understand, Jay - yes, definitely number 2 -and quite a reasonable answer. Shame those posts are never approved, though. Maybe they never get read even by you.

Ha, ha, ha...very funny. So... (Below threshold)
cat:

Ha, ha, ha...very funny. So now, after all those failed attempts to post a rebuttal of Miniter's wild claims, you now post every single one of them. Overkill, don't you think?

Would the left, far left, a... (Below threshold)
Steve:

Would the left, far left, anti-war people out there be HAPPY if we DID (God, I hope we don't) lose the war in Iraq? Personally, I think they would be pleased as punch. But also, I don't believe the people who, just because they don't like our President, claim he's wrong at every turn are correct. I mean, these people read one side (I think the wrong side) of the 2-sided news stories and derive their entire decision based on these one-sided news stories. Anything contrary to what they want to see be damned!

Would the left, far left, a... (Below threshold)
Steve:

Would the left, far left, anti-war people out there be HAPPY if we DID (God, I hope we don't) lose the war in Iraq? Personally, I think they would be pleased as punch. But also, I don't believe the people who, just because they don't like our President, claim he's wrong at every turn are correct. I mean, these people read one side (I think the wrong side) of the 2-sided news stories and derive their entire decision based on these one-sided news stories. Anything contrary to what they want to see be damned!




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