Search for Banned Arms In Iraq Ended Last Month
By Dafna Linzer
The hunt for biological, chemical and nuclear weapons in Iraq has come to an end nearly two years after President Bush ordered U.S. troops to disarm Saddam Hussein.
... Four months after Charles A. Duelfer, who led the weapons hunt in 2004, submitted an interim report to Congress that contradicted nearly every prewar assertion about Iraq made by top Bush administration officials, a senior intelligence official said the findings will stand as the ISG's final conclusions and will be published this spring.
President Bush, Vice President Cheney and other top administration officials asserted before the U.S. invasion in March 2003 that Iraq was reconstituting its nuclear weapons program, had chemical and biological weapons, and maintained links to al Qaeda affiliates to whom it might give such weapons to use against the United States.
... "The September 30 report is really pretty much the picture," the intelligence official said.
"We've talked to so many people that someone would have said something. We received nothing that contradicts the picture we've put forward.
... Congress allotted hundreds of millions of dollars for the weapons hunt, and there has been no public accounting of the money. A spokesman for the Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency said the entire budget and the expenditures would remain classified.
Iraq provides the immediate justification
" The United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein. "
-- Rebuilding America's Defences: Strategies, Forces And Resources For A New Century, written in September 2000 by the neo-conservative think-tank Project for the New American Century (PNAC) to advise Richard Cheney (now vice- president), Donald Rumsfeld (defence secretary), Paul Wolfowitz (Rumsfeld's deputy), Jeb Bush and Lewis Libby (Cheney's chief of staff) among others. --
it won't be defined by a single battle
" We will deal with them [Iran, Iraq, Syria and Saudi Arabia] ... It's not going to happen overnight and it won't be defined by a single battle. "
-- Michael Ledeen, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, in a newspaper interview --
we must destroy them to advance our historic mission...
" Creative destruction ... both within our own society and abroad ... [foreigners] seeing America undo traditional societies may fear us, for they do not wish to be undone . . . They must attack us in order to survive, just as we must destroy them to advance our historic mission. "
-- Michael Ledeen, in his recent publication, 'The War Against the Terror Masters' --
[Senators] only watch American TV
" Last Wednesday, CIA officials gave a closed-door briefing on Capitol Hill about the rising tide of anti-Americanism sweeping the Arab world. Particular emphasis was placed on Jordan and Egypt. As agency officials discussed the depth of hatred for U.S. actions, the senators fell silent. There were delicate discussions about the uncertainty, if the war was protracted, of "regime stability." After the briefing, "there were senators who were ashen-faced," said one staff member. "They were absolutely depressed." Much of what the agency briefed would not have been news to any close watcher of the BBC or almost any foreign news broadcast. "But they [the senators] only watch American TV," said the staffer. Most of the senators had been led to believe that the war would be quick and that the Iraqi populace would be dancing in the streets. " -Newsweek, April 7 Issue -
W M D
"... the definition of 'is' is ..."
"We were not lying, . . .it was just a matter of emphasis." -- "Reason for War?, White House Officials Say Privately the Sept. 11 Attacks Changed Everything", By John Cochran, ABCNews.com, 20030425, http://abcnews.go.com/sections/nightline/US/globalshow_030425.html [To build its case for war with Iraq, the Bush administration argued that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, but some officials now privately acknowledge the White House had another reason for war — a global show of American power and democracy. Officials inside government and advisers outside told ABCNEWS the administration emphasized the danger of Saddam's weapons to gain the legal justification for war from the United Nations and to stress the danger at home to Americans.] (comments by ABCNews.com) --
Rumsfeld & NBC
What's Rumsfeld doing on the Swiss-based ABB board selling nuke plants to the Koreans??? And why was he arranging WMD for Hussein in the 1980s??? He's an arms merchant, pure and simple. And what arms merchant wouldn't want to be Secretary of Defense?
-- David Sadler, 2003.05.01 --
Books will be written...
"We didn't have all these people in [protective] suits" for nothing . . . [But if Iraq thought of using such weapons] there had to have been something to use. And we haven't found it. . . . Books will be written on that in the intelligence community for a long time." -- Army Col. Richard McPhee, who will close down the 75th Exploitation Task Force next month (June 2003), said he took seriously U.S. intelligence warnings on the eve of war that Hussein had given "release authority" to subordinates in command of chemical weapons., "Frustrated, U.S. Arms Team to Leave Iraq- Task Force Unable To Find Any Weapons", By Barton Gellman, Washington Post Staff Writer, © 2003 The Washington Post Company, Sunday, May 11, 2003; Page A01, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A40212-2003May10.html --
We're past that ...
"[Task force leaders no longer] think we're going to find chemical rounds sitting next to a gun . . . That's what we came here for, but we're past that." -- Robert Smith, Army Col., who leads the site assessment teams from the Defense Threat Reduction Agency. ., "Frustrated, U.S. Arms Team to Leave Iraq- Task Force Unable To Find Any Weapons", By Barton Gellman, Washington Post Staff Writer, © 2003 The Washington Post Company, Sunday, May 11, 2003; Page A01, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A40212-2003May10.html --
We know they're empty ...
"Why are we doing any planned targets? Answer me that. We know they're empty." -- Army Chief Warrant Officer Richard L. Gonzales, leader of Mobile Exploitation Team Alpha, said in disgust to a colleague during last Sunday's nightly report of weapons sites and survey results., "Frustrated, U.S. Arms Team to Leave Iraq- Task Force Unable To Find Any Weapons", By Barton Gellman, Washington Post Staff Writer, © 2003 The Washington Post Company, Sunday, May 11, 2003; Page A01, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A40212-2003May10.html --
Watch the neocons move the goal posts down the field on WMD, just like the Clinton Arkansas Mafia. Clinton enraged the conservatives by doing this, but the majority of conservatives in my party are blind to the same tactic being used by the neocons to avoid accountability. My party has become a personality cult worshiping a President whose popularity has been built upon a controlled press. -- David Sadler --
We know where they are...
" We know where they are. They're in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south and north somewhat. " -- Donald Rumsfeld, ABC Interview, March 30, 2003 --
we can track down the WMD...
" There are people who in large measure have information that we need . . . so that we can track down the weapons of mass destruction in that country. " -- Donald Rumsfeld, Press Briefing, April 25, 2003 --
We never believed...
" We never believed that we'd just tumble over weapons of mass destruction in that country. " -- Donald Rumsfeld, Fox News Interview, May 4, 2003 --
I don't know the answer...
" They may have had time to destroy them, and I don't know the answer. " -- Donald Rumsfeld, Remarks to the Council on Foreign Relations, May 27, 2003 --
For bureaucratic reasons...
" For bureaucratic reasons, we settled on one issue, weapons of mass destruction (as justification for invading Iraq) because it was the one reason everyone could agree on. " -- Paul Wolfowitz, Deputy Secretary of Defense, Vanity Fair interview, May 28, 2003 --
WMDs were the excuse...
" [British] claims about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction were 'not the reason to go to war, but the excuse to go to war'. "
-- Sir John Walker, former British officer, Air Marshal, a former chief of Defence Intelligence, 'Claims about WMD 'may have been excuse rather than reason for war', By Paul Waugh, Deputy Political Editor, 25 August 2003 --
WMDs aren't really the issue...
" [Whether Saddam's regime actually possessed weapons of mass destruction] isn't really the issue... Whether he possessed them today or four years ago isn't really the issue ... As long as that regime was in power, it was determined to get nuclear, chemical and biological weapons one way or another.. "
-- John Bolton, undersecretary of state for arms control, Associated Press, 2003.9.03 --
Ignorance is no excuse...
" We now know that documents alleging a transaction between Iraq and Niger had been forged. " -- Michael Anton, spokesman for the national security council, "White House Says Iraq Uranium Claim Forged", Reuters, 2003.07.08, http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article4036.htm
he wouldn't have been in that category...
" We put [George W. Bush] on the board and [he] spent three years. Came to all the meetings. Told a lot of jokes. Not that many clean ones. And after a while I kind of said to him, after about three years - you know, I'm not sure this is really for you. Maybe you should do something else. Because I don't think you're adding that much value to the board. You don't know that much about the company. He said, well I think I'm getting out of this business anyway. And I don't really like it that much. So I'm probably going to resign from the board. And I said, thanks - didn't think I'd ever see him again. His name is George W. Bush. He became President of the United States. So you know if you said to me, name 25 million people who would maybe be President of the United States, he wouldn't have been in that category. So you never know. Anyway, I haven't been invited to the White House for any things. " -- David Rubenstein, founder of the secretive defense contractor Carlyle Group. Recalling how useless Bush was as a board member of Carlyle’s firm Caterair and his surprise that George W. is now president. " A Look At Why The Carlyle Group Wanted to Drop George W. Bush From Its Board A Decade Ago " , http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article3994.htm --
the administration lied...
" I believe the Bush administration did not provide an accurate picture to the American people of the military threat posed by Iraq. "
-- Mr Thielmannn, a former US intelligence official who served under the Bush administration in the build-up to the Iraq war accusing the White House of lying about the threat posed by Saddam Hussein., " White House 'lied about Saddam threat' ", Julian Borger in Washington, The Guardian, Thursday July 10, 2003, http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,995188,00.html --