Thursday, April 17, 2003

"I Don't Think We'll Discover Anything, Myself"

So says Donald Rumsfeld regarding WMD in Iraq.

"I think what will happen is we'll discover people who will tell us where to go find it. It is not like a treasure hunt where you just run around looking everywhere, hoping you find something."

He should be telling it to the ICC.

Update: This article quotes some global analysts who say the Bush administration should be embarrassed.

..former CIA station chief Ray Close, said: "I'm hoping they will be embarrassed into acknowledging a role for some independent body. And who could it be but the UN?"

They don't know these people well. Then again, it seems they do;

Retired CIA intelligence analyst and VIPS member Ray McGovern told AFP: "Some of my colleagues are virtually certain that there will be some weapons of mass destruction found, even though they might have to be planted.

"I'm just as sure that some few will be found, but not in an amount that by any stretch would justify the charge of a threat against the US or anyone else."

He added: "Even if the planting were discovered by and by, they'll say, 'ok, the weapons were planted -- fine.'"

Update 4/20: Apparently on the same day Rumsfeld made the previous announcement Hans Blix requested that the UN inspectors be allowed back into Iraq to add legitimacy to any 'discovery' of WMD. He also challenged Bush on his administration's claims that Syria is in possession of them.

"Whoever claims this should, in the interests of credibility, very quickly present the relevant proof," Blix said in an interview with the German weekly Der Spiegel. "For my part, I doubt that the Syrians would have been enthusiastic to serve as a depot of weapons of mass destruction for Baghdad."


The Bush administration, which blamed Blix for hampering its drive to win international support for war, has not invited U.N. inspectors to take part in disarming postwar Iraq. Instead, the United States has tried to hire away some inspectors and has deployed its own teams to search for weapons of mass destruction.

Blix said internationally backed inspections would have "considerably more credibility."

"The alliance came as liberator and occupier, and that can prove to be a disadvantage," he told the magazine. "If its experts now should really discover weapons of mass destruction, their authenticity might be called into question."

Reports on Iraqi weapons programs that the inspectors received from intelligence agencies were "pretty pathetic" and led to no discoveries of weapons of mass destruction, Blix said.

The chief nuclear weapons inspector, Mohamed ElBaradei, even received forged documents meant to persuade the inspectors that Iraq had nuclear weapons ambitions, Blix said. He gave no details.

Today [4/20] The Observer reports that the Bush administration is refusing Blix and the UN inspectors a role in Iraq. Could there be any more damning evidence their intentions are nefarious?

UK Government sources told The Observer the central question of verification of any finds of WMD would be left to a third country outside the coalition, such as the Netherlands. Discussions are under way to establish which country can offer the greatest expertise and is willing to take on the task of overseeing US and British operations.

It was revealed last week that a 1,000-strong Anglo-American task force was being prepared to search for WMDs at up to 150 sites across Iraq. Former UN weapons inspectors have been hired to help in the search, which has so far produced some pieces of evidence but no 'smoking gun'.

The Denver Post makes a sloppy case for those who may believe the Bushies simply need more time.

In it the former UN inspector Kay states:

Former chief U.N. weapons inspector David Kay knows what that frustration is like. In 1991-92, Kay's team searched much of Iraq's major military facilities without finding what a high-level defector later revealed was a large stock of anthrax, mustard gas and VX.

He must be referring to Gen. Hussein Kamel yet doesn't bother to mention the same 'high-level defector' also stated all WMD were destroyed. Wouldn't that explain the UN inspectors' failure to 'find them'?

The writer also states 'no one believes the Bush administration got it so wrong'. Who does he deem qualified to include in his assessment? It seems to me Hans Blix, for one, couldn't be more critical short of calling for judicial action.

And after all of it, even if the Bushies manage to plant their evidence or some kind of legitimate find were actually discovered, what would it 'prove'? It doesn't change the facts this kind of 'evidence' should have been uncovered before a pre-emptive strike so long as Saddam was cooperating with the UN inspectors.

It would not change the fact that this pre-emptive strike was a crime against humanity and the resultant occupation is an illegal one.

No comments: