Intelligence “dead wrong” on Iraq WMD: Panel

The report took the US intelligence community severely to task for a series of shortcomings it said led to the false conclusion that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction, justifying the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

(Source)

Still looking for scapegoats? I remember seeing a parade of individuals in positions of authority saying that there were no WMD. People like Charles Duelfer, head of the UN Iraq Survey Group, and “official CIA reports” (so said the news).

And I recall about 2 1/2 years ago there was a stink about the president ignoring reports by the CIA and UN that said that there were no WMDs.

Yes, Mr. Hussein is a very un-nice person. But there are lots of un-nice national rulers in the world. Why not pin a target on those guys chests?

Ok, so, we went to war to put a presence in the mid-east for national security’s sake. Just freaking say that!

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I will go to my grave being angry at Colin Powell for lying in front of the UN Security Council and the tens of millions of people watching on TV. His appearance before the council on February 2nd, 2003 is what convinced me that the war was justified. He used his tremendous stage presence to deceive me.

How do I know he’s lying? He talked about a tremendous amount of “verified” incriminating evidence. Yet not a single scrap of evidence was ever found, not by the UN inspectors and not by the US military. Not a single molecule. [update 4-2-05. This statement is incorrect. See Comments below] I find it odd that we can recover data off a hard drive that has been overwritten 5 times and then smashed with a hammer but not find any traces of sought after chemicals in one out of at least “65 such facilities in Iraq” (Powell).

4 Comments

  1. TJIC says:

    Yet not a single scrap of evidence was ever found, not by the UN inspectors and not by the US military. Not a single molecule.

    You’re drastically overstating your case.

    On May 17, 2004 a roadside IED containing WMD (specifically, sarin gas) detonated, releasing sarin. Tests on fragments of the EID verified the sarin.

    Two weeks before that a different WMD (mustard gas) was discovered in a different IED.

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,120137,00.html

    http://www.doxagora.com/2004/05/bombs-away-sarin-shellied-is-i-think.html

    On the nuclear issue, the “there were no WMD / we were lied to crowd” wants to have it both ways: on the one hand, they assert that there were no WMD; on the other hand, they acknowledge that there was “looting” (i.e. a coordinated Baathist Party plan) to remove machinery and materials from nuclear Iraqi nuclear facilities before and after the US military conquered the country.

    http://www.thinkingpeace.com/pages/arts2/arts410.html

    http://slate.msn.com/id/2114820/

    The second link is particularly interesting. Let me quote:

    Once again, a major story gets top billing in a mainstream paper—and is printed upside down. “Looting at Weapons Plants Was Systematic, Iraqi Says.” This was how the New York Times led its front page on Sunday. According to the supporting story, Dr. Sami al-Araji, the deputy minister of industry, says that after the fall of Baghdad in April 2003, “looters systematically dismantled and removed tons of machinery from Saddam Hussein’s most important weapons installations, including some with high-precision equipment capable of making parts for nuclear arms.”…

    It was eye-rubbing to read of the scale of this potential new nightmare. There in cold print was the Al Hatteen “munitions production plant that international inspectors called a complete potential nuclear weapons laboratory.” And what of the Al Adwan facility, which “produced equipment used for uranium enrichment, necessary to make some kinds of nuclear weapons”? The overall pattern of the plundered sites was summarized thus, by reporters James Glanz and William J. Broad:

    The kinds of machinery at the various sites included equipment that could be used to make missile parts, chemical weapons or centrifuges essential for enriching uranium for atom bombs.

    My first question is this: How can it be that, on every page of every other edition for months now, the New York Times has been stating categorically that Iraq harbored no weapons of mass destruction?

    obviously, what we are reading about is a carefully planned military operation. The participants were not panicked or greedy civilians helping themselves—which is the customary definition of a “looter,” especially in wartime. They were mechanized and mobile and under orders, and acting in a concerted fashion. Thus, if the story is factually correct—which we have no reason at all to doubt—then Saddam’s Iraq was a fairly highly-evolved WMD state, with a contingency plan for further concealment and distribution of the weaponry in case of attack or discovery.

    You can argue that we did not find huge stockpiles of WMD.

    That’s true.

    But to argue that we did not find “a single scrap of evidence; not a single molecule” is flat out wrong.

  2. Lee says:

    Thank you very much for clarifying that. I obviously don’t follow the news closely enough.

    In order to reassure me, I would still very much like to see some reports saying things like, “the equipment found by UN inspectors had small traces of Mustard Gas on it, indicating that it had been used sometime in the last 5 years to make the lethal agent.” rather than, “the equipment found by inspectors was capable of making Mustard Gas.” Maybe such statements are out there but I haven’t found them.

  3. TJIC says:


    Thank you very much for clarifying that. I obviously don’t follow the news closely enough.

    My pleasure. I don’t blame you; the mainstream media tries hard to conceal the truth in service of a political agenda.

    This is an interesting page:

    http://cassandra2004.blogspot.com/2005/04/top-10-categories-of-msmdnc-bias.html

    Top 10 categories of MSM/DNC bias.

    Bias in the MSM/DNC takes many forms.

    1) The Lie. Often, but not always, the MSM/DNC will resort to an outright lie. This lie will involve some very specific fact, like a forged memo, false reports of a crowd booing when the crowd actually applauded, false claims that Sandy Berger returned the “original” documents, false attribution of statements to public figures, false charges that American soldiers are targeting journalists, etc.

    These lies also include preparation of headlines or stories in advance of the actual events, as MSM/DNC did with the Iraqi elections …

    2. The memory hole. The tactic here is to forget that certain events occurred and hope that everyone else does also. This tactic requires that the MSM/DNC not only stop talking about some fact, but actually help it to disappear.

    The MSM/DNC never talks about the WMD’s that we actually did find in Iraq.

    Just before the election, NBC interviewed John Kerry and asked about his military IQ test. Kerry stated that this record was not public (a blatant contradiction of Kerry’s story that he has released ALL of his military records). The next day, excerpts of this interview appeared on another NBC program, with the damning admission excised…

  4. Lee says:

    (to quote a quote of a quote) Unlink! Unlink! Ok!

    The posting that you mention has far far more spin than where I was going with mine.

    I had hoped that you would have found posts that dispelled my worries that there isn’t any evidence of Iraq building or actively maintaining WMD recently. Instead, the post that you offered me is, to use the fifth category of top MSM/DNC bias, “partisan”.

    Most of what is in Cassandra’s post is either a debatable truth, a common tactic used by all involved parties, or largely irrelevant. It would take several pages and quite a bit of research to confirm all of my suppositions but let me bring up some examples:

    “2. The memory hole”. Cassandra’s prime example is of an edited Kerry interview. However, Cassandra goes ahead and quotes Powerlineblog on the subject, who offers up a pretty reasonable explanation as to why the accused “memory hole” wasn’t a terrible smoking gun.

    I might bring up that the very reason we’re having this discussion is about a story generated by the White House that intelligence was “dead wrong”… but I’ve already said how the intelligence wasn’t dead wrong, the White House just decided to listen to certain voices and not others. Obviously, the White House is putting a memory hole spin on the issue.

    “3. Ventriloquism journalism.” I read the story that Cassandra is referring to. (Assuming Drudge is accurate in his reporting…) it sounds like the journalists that coached the soldiers on what questions to ask weren’t fabricating anything and were encouraging the soldiers to ask something that was on all of their minds. It’s hard to tell whether this tactic saves lives by getting the equipment the soldiers need, or kills soldiers by lowering morale. But it doesn’t sound the journalist did an obviously bad thing. What about any of a thousand lobby organizations that do this sort of mouthpiece activism as a matter of course?

    “4. Polls.” I can’t figure where Cassandra is going with this. Cassandra quotes how Fox News was unable to find fair and balanced (sorry, I couldn’t resist) pollsters. I’m having some trouble here… I assume that Fox isn’t a member of the MSM/DNC. Then maybe they should try to find a different polling company, or figure out why the exit polls of neutral polling companies were so wrong. I’m hard pressed to believe that there is a grand conspiracy whereby all of the polling companies in America are in the pocket of the MSM/DNC.

    This reply is starting to get long and I’m getting bored of shooting down Cassandra’s claims. TJIC, do you have any response to the direction I’m taking?

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