Where are the WMD? Were there any?

[quote=“George Melloan, WSJ”]


A Nation of Liberators
No WMDs yet, and America shrugs. That’s because we value human rights.

Sunday, June 15, 2003 12:01 a.m.

The failure to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq so far has been used against George W. Bush and Tony Blair by their political enemies in Europe. But very little has been made of it in the U.S., which bore the main cost of the war. Now, why would that be?

One explanation is that Americans were more focused than Europeans on what many regarded as the least important of the war’s goals, the liberation of the Iraqi people. Weapons of mass destruction, though terrible in concept, were something the U.S. became inured to during the Cold War. The chance of becoming a victim of terrorism, given the extensive law enforcement apparatus, seems less than that of being struck by lightning.

But the thought of masses of innocent people having been murdered by their own government is a horror that resonates from sea to shining sea. It awakens the ethos that has been a part of the national psyche since Virginia’s Patrick Henry in 1775 declaimed, in defiance of the British, “Give me liberty or give me death.” Human liberty was invoked by Woodrow Wilson on April 2,1917, when he asked Congress to declare war on Germany “to make the world safe for democracy.” Ronald Reagan demanded that Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev tear down the Berlin Wall, and there were emotional cheers from Americans when East Germans themselves dismantled that odious barrier to human freedom in 1989.
This current is so strong in America that the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon brought a great burst of patriotism. From my office window, I can look down on the construction site where the twin towers once stood and see a giant stars and stripes painted on the top of one of the utility buildings. Flags still flutter atop cars or from the windows of homes all over America.

Freedom House, one of innumerable private U.S. organizations that promote democracy and liberty, annually publishes a map depicting advances of freedom around the world. The National Endowment for Democracy, its two branches backed by the two major U.S. political parties, assists peoples striving for democratic rule. The State Department compiles annually an exhaustive report on the state of human rights in countries of the world.

So it should not be surprising, except perhaps to a few political sophisticates in Europe, that Americans would regard a government’s mistreatment of its own people along with its threats to other nations as a casus belli. The destruction of tyrannies gratifies the American sense of justice, one of the bulwarks of American democracy. It nurtures the concept of a “just war.”

But despite this powerful legacy, foreign-policy specialists in the U.S. sometimes seem embarrassed by the idea of the U.S. as a fighter of wars of liberation. They often prefer the more hardheaded, and more European, view that countries fight to defend their interests, meaning the protection of trade routes, or sources of oil or spheres of influence that have commercial rewards. Many wars have been fought for exactly those reasons, but usually there is no matter of justice at stake–only contests for power.

Europe, much to its credit, has largely outgrown the territorial conflicts and colonial wars that kept its armies occupied for centuries. That’s why with the end of the Cold War and the continued consolidation of states within the European Union, Europe’s armies have been in decline. With borders coming down and trade flowing freely, there is little support for territorial aggression.

But it should not be forgotten that U.S. soldiers were the key to liberating Europe from Nazi rule and it was U.S. statesmen who promoted the main postwar institutions of European unity, NATO and the forerunners to the EU. Japan as well was fortunate enough to be defeated by a power that regarded freedom and democracy as the key to peaceful progress.
Critics of the war in Iraq are now taking delight in detailing the “chaos” in that liberated state. But short memories forget that France was rather chaotic as well after the Germans were driven out, as partisans went to work on the French men and women who collaborated with the Germans. Indeed, there is still a tendency in France toward settling issues in the streets.

What is so often seen as chaos in Iraq is merely the turmoil of people who are finally free to express themselves openly. The political factions contending for influence and power are not unlike the factions that so troubled George Washington. Indeed, U.S. factional fighting remains as vigorous and strident today as it was then, but more firmly bound by the broad acceptance of law and precedent and ultimately controlled by the jealous regard free people have for their rights to choose their own leaders.

What’s happening in Iraq is called politics. Given the number of AK-47s scattered around the country and the deep animosities engendered during a savage dictatorship, it is at times a dangerous form of politics. L. Paul Bremer, the American administrator charged with pulling together a representative interim government that will arrange for free elections, has his hands full. Trying to build the institutions so necessary to democratic rule, most particularly a reliable and accessible system of justice, will proceed under severe handicaps, not least the difficulty of finding Iraqis who are respectful of individual rights and want to uphold them.

American efforts to promote liberty around the world have not always succeeded. The failure in Vietnam was traumatic, of course, and raised doubts in the minds of many Americans about the legitimacy of wars of liberation. Some State Department professionals came away from that experience with a sense that America had overreached in trying to impose its values on a distant nation. But that rather misses the point. Wars of liberation are meant to allow people the freedom to find and exercise their own values. Among Asians, the Japanese, South Koreans and Taiwanese have taken the road of democratic capitalism when it was opened to them.

Global politics are never simple. But all signs indicate that Americans have no regrets about Iraq, for reasons firmly imbedded in the nation’s history.

Mr. Melloan is deputy editor, international of The Wall Street Journal’s editorial page. His column appears in the Journal Tuesdays.[/quote]

Excavation (3)

A retired archeologist, visiting Baghdad today
Talked about their search for ancient weapons
Believed to have been manufactured a few thousand years ago
By a most feared and since disappeared tyrant
“We’ve found nothing,” he said bitterly,
“We’ve found nothing, yet”


[quote=“tigerman”]I pretty much agree with what Andrew Sullivan says on this matter:

andrewsullivan.com/main_arti … m=20030601

I pretty much disagree. here’s why-

Sullivan says this was and is the case for getting rid of Saddam. This meaning both WMD and link to terror. Putting aside the WMD issue which is still inconclusive either way, where is the link to terror and Al Qaida? I don’t recall the bush administration making any real case other than just some general statement about terror. It doesn’t seem credible that Al Qaida would ally with Baathist Party. It’s like India and China uniting against US or something proposterous. Al Qaida believes in freeing the Holy Lands from foreigners and creating a Sharia state. Baathisthism is a socialist, secular organization. They are both Arabs, but that doesn’t mean they are the same or would ally.

Sullivan writes [quote]"The fundamental case for getting rid of Saddam was not dependent on the existence of a certain amount of some chemical or other. " [/quote]
I was under the impression that because Saddam did actually possess WMD, that was the fundamental case for deposing him.

[quote]It was and is the obvious next step for an operation like al Qaeda. [/quote] What about the next obvious step being finishing what was started in Afghanistan. but wait, there’s no oil there. but the US did manage to secure a pipeline through there. job’s done. ok that was a little facetious

First, he says it doesnt matter Iraq doesnt have some amount of chemicals ie WMD. Then he says clear and present danger. This is incongruous unless Iraq has some other secret weapon nobody has talked about. how is Iraq a clear and present danger w/o WMD? yeah, bring in the old al qaida line.

btw,I am not saying overthrowing Saddam isn’t a boon to all the oppressed Iraqis. I’m sure everyone, the Shiites, the Kurds hated the Baathists. I’m saying Bush and his hawks used any excuse to start a war with Iraq because it was Iraq. The hawks themselves admit it. They’ve been waiting for a chance like this.

If we had been so concerned about Iraq’s danger, why didn’t Bush I go in? Oh yeah let’s tell the Kurds and dissidents to start a rebellion, the US will support you and then last minute pull out so the Repub. Guard can slaughter everyone and we’ll watch from Kuwait.

what i object to is Bush playing with other people’s lives indiscriminately including putting in harm’s way US soldiers not to mention civilians in Iraq for his own political motives, regardless of how bad Saddam was. An excuse is still an excuse. if they really wanted to curb terrorists, why not go after Saudi Arabia? (probably they would start a real Jihad if they literally occupied the holy land)

I guess Goebbels was right when he said that if you tell a lie 1,000 times everyone will believe it.


I know that Afghanistan was all about oil because of the pipeline remember. Unilocal was going to build it or was it Unical or was it… and it was going to transport oil, no natural gas, no opium, but …

Y’all gots to stop gettin your news from zmag.org and Noam Chomsky. Times to edjucates yerself real good and stops talkin like ignorant folx.

sundaytimes.news.com.au/comm … 77,00.html

Have posted this link on the US Foreign policy thread. But it seems appropriate here.

Possible evidence of attempts to subvert the inspections process, without the need to have large stockpiles of banned weapons lying around inconveniently.

It shows the difficulty of dealing with the disarmament issue while Hussein was still in power.

andrewsullivan.com/main_arti … m=20030601

[quote=“jackburton”]I pretty much disagree. here’s why-

Sullivan says this was and is the case for getting rid of Saddam. This meaning both WMD and link to terror. Putting aside the WMD issue which is still inconclusive either way, where is the link to terror and Al Qaida?[/quote]

First, there certainly were links to terror. 1) Saddam funded the Abu Sayaf terrorists in the Philippines… Abu Sayaf was established by the brother or cousing of a high-ranking member of al Qaeda. 2) Saddam paid “compensation” to the families of Palestinian homicide bombers. 3) Abu Nidal lived in Iraq, as did the Palestinian who led the hi-jacking of the Achilles Luaral (sp?). 4) The coalition forces have discovered documents that clearly link al Qaeda to Saddam’s regime… these were reported shortly after the fall of Baghdad. 5) There were al Qaeda camps operating in northern Iraq… although this area was not under Saddam’s control, it was in Iraq…

Second, the threat articulated was not only that Iraq had WMD, which claim may turn out to have been incorrect, but that after 911, the US could not afford to allow Saddam to use his oil revenues to develop or otherwise obtain WMD, which could conceivably be provided to terrorists who could act as the delivery system for such WMD.

You argue that al Qaeda and Saddam would be unlikely allies, but the fact that they did indeed have connections, despite continued statements that none existed, proves that such an alliance would have been quite possible. And even if no connection yet existed, it would be foolish to wait until such a connection arose. The stakes were/are simply too high to give Saddam and OBL the benefit of the doubt.

Its odd to read arguments that Saddam and OBL would not likely ally against their common foe… and you’re not the first to propose this idea… as there is an Arab saying that goes “my enemy’s enemy is my friend.”

And, the US and UK allied with Stalin against their common enemy, Nazi Germany.

It really isn’t as though the idea of Saddam and al Qaeda getting together is unthinkable.

I was under the impression that because Saddam did actually possess WMD, that was the fundamental case for deposing him.[/quote]

That belief added urgency to the matter. However, the threat of Saddam arming terrorists in the future was also articulated. As I have stated, we knew that saddam provided compensation to the families of Palestinian homicide bombers and to the terrorists Abu Sayaf organization in the Philippines… how much of a stretch of imagination is it to believe that he might well directly arm terrorists if he had the weapons? IMO, it was a reasonable fear.

Did Bush not state at the very beginning that this would be a long effort, much of which would go unreported? Afghanistan has not been abandoned… efforts are still underway there… I have a cousin there taking part in those efforts.

It was very facetious, and I think incorrect too. My understanding is that the US company that was previously considering the pipeline there gave up on it a long time ago. I could be wrong.

No, it isn’t incongruous. As articulated, Saddam himself was a clear and present danger. We knew that he had sought and had possessed weapons in the past… he even used them in Iran and against the Kurds. We knew that he had continued to covertly develop and or otherwise obtain such weapons and that he had failed to comply with the UN cease fire agreement and the 17 UN resolutions calling on him to immediately verify the status of his arms stockpiles and programs. He didn’t do so. Thus, the situation that was Saddam’s nonconformance did constitute a clear and present danger. Let’s not forget, not every dangerous situation materializes… that is, just because a danger exists doesn’t mean that harm necessarily occurs. But to have left the situation of Saddam’s noncompliance remaining as was would have been a failure to take appropriate precautions under the circumstances.

Yes. And they articulated those reasons also. Just because the media didn’t pick up on all of the reasons does not mean that they were not identified.

You do recall what happened on 9-11-2001? That is what changed the circumstances.

OK, what was the political motive?

There were several very good reasons for going into Iraq. These have been stated in the media, by the President, and on these forums.

Someone sent me a report (I do not have it anymore) a while back in which they claimed that some TV reporter had discovered that the Oklahoma bombing may have been coached and funded by Iraqi agents in cooperation with Palestinians. I just wrote it down to paranoid ramblings, but does anyone remember this?

That to me would count as Iraqi support of terrorism.

What about the al Qaeda meeting with Iraqi agents in Prague? Fact or fiction?
What about the Iraqis that were expelled from the Philippines?
Why was the Iraqi Embassy in Brazil so busy burning documents after Hussein’s regime was toppled?


[quote=“fred smith”]What about the al Qaeda meeting with Iraqi agents in Prague? Fact or fiction?
What about the Iraqis that were expelled from the Philippines?
Why was the Iraqi Embassy in Brazil so busy burning documents after Hussein’s regime was toppled?


C’mon Fred, you know that the only time such acts are considered suspicious is when the same are committed by the CIA!

Other nations are completely trustworthy… especially Saddam’s Iraq!


No, no, that’s backslang
for Don’t Mess With US
(we got them too)


This is from Newsmax. Anyone know how reliable they are? I do not see this story covered in any of the mainstream press which could mean that it is NOT a valid story.

Furthermore, said the plaintiffs, the Iraqi-inspired terrorist attacks that have occurred have often utilized ammonium nitrate (fertilizer), nitromethane and cyanide, bomb ingredients that Iraq had been attempting to procure since before the Gulf War.

The plaintiffs alleged that the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in April 1995 had dramatic similarities to the February 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center, maintaining that in each instance, the bomb was a massive "fertilizer bomb.?

"Both bombs were delivered to their targets in rented Ryder trucks, which had been rented in adjoining states. Both attacks were timed in order to inflict substantial casualties and to bring down the targeted buildings,?alleged the plaintiffs.

When the Murrah Building was bombed, said the plaintiffs, Abdul Hakim Murad, in a prison cell in New York City awaiting trial for his part in the plot to bomb five American 747 aircraft, admitted verbally on April 19, 1995 and in writing that Ramzi Youssef

This is from World Net Daily. More of the same, but why has this not been covered by a major newspaper if it is in fact true?

Suit: Iraq masterminded attack
Entire Oklahoma City plot allegedly ‘aided by agents’ of Baghdad

Posted: March 14, 2002
3:29 p.m. Eastern

By Jon Dougherty
& 2002 WorldNetDaily.com

A class-action lawsuit was filed in district court in Washington, D.C., today alleging that Iraq, “in whole or in part,” planned and financed the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City nearly seven years ago.

“Plaintiffs assert that the entire plot was, in whole or in part, orchestrated, assisted technically and/or financially, and directly aided by agents of the Republic of Iraq,” said the suit, filed by public interest law firm Judicial Watch.

Ridiculous internet hoax, that’s why no major papers picked it up.

. . . or at least ridiculous lawsuit if the story is true. Maybe the Iraqis caused Taiwan’s 9/21 earthquake too.

[quote=“Mother Theresa”]Ridiculous internet hoax, that’s why no major papers picked it up.

Wrong. Maybe you should read more.

cbsnews.com/stories/2002/03/ … 3807.shtml

I am with Mother Theresa. At first, I thought it was one of these paranoia things flying over the Internet.

After reading through this stuff though, it seems like yet another law suit. Hey throw the dice in America, take your chance and your lawyers may get you a deal. Why not give it a go?

All of the reporting is still couched in terms like alleged, but the reports of the meetings in the Philippines and the similarity in the terrorist attacks could be coincidence or something more sinister? I am still out on this, though very interested. Can anyone submit something a bit more factual?

Also, why would the US government cover up any Iraqi involvement. In fact, if the US wanted to go to war with Iraq over terrorism would this not be the perfect opportunity to raise it again and dig like hell to prove the Iraqis were behind it?

Nightmare (scenario)

U.S. military in Baghdad
Repeated again
We’re doing all that we can to retrieve those lost weapons
UN inspectors are asking for “unfettered access”
Security Council says Bush is given a week
Or consequences will follow
Game’s over, says Blix
Wake up, George, you’re having a nightmare


Forgotten WMDs

War in the Middle of the Desert
Well, didn’t really happened, did it?


when the one of the CIA admits that the Bush administration distorted the intelligence reports to justify a war…

story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=s … ay/5252422

it’s amazing how some of you think the US and its leaders can do no wrong. (and I’m not saying they are always wrong, just not always right)
is it so hard to admit that the US, like most other countries, will do whatever is necessary, including lies, deceit, funding terrorists themselves, in order to preserve the wealth, power, and way of life of the US? Kissinger anyone?

[quote=“jackburton”]when the one of the CIA admits that the Bush administration distorted the intelligence reports to justify a war…

So, there was no admission that the administration distorted intelligence reports.

Policymakers were accused of “distorting the situation” not the reports and indeed the suggestion makes no implicit accusation of malign intent by the administration. Either they “misinterpreted” it or “they had bad intelligence.”

And it was not a CIA officer, but a former CIA director.

Yet, you read it as: [quote=“jackburton one more time”]when the one of the CIA admits that the Bush administration distorted the intelligence reports to justify a war…[/quote]

Now, the question is: did you lie about what information was in the article, was it bad information, or did you just misinterpret it?


Is that question addressed to me or to Mr. Bush?

Our intelligence reports had indicated that the Bush administration distorted the truth about its intelligence reports. Furthermore, it had a pre-determined conclusion and used only information which supported this conclusion and ignore contrary information.

Ok, Turner is a former director (not that I said ‘CIA officer’).

but seriously, the jury still seems to be out, so I guess we should wait to see if WMD (or their remains, and I think we should expect more than a couple of mobile trucks) are or aren’t found.