Thursday, October 14, 2004

The Final Word on Iraqi WMDs

October 14, 2004

The grim reaper has come for Bush's presidency, and his name is Charles A. Duelfer. For those of you who missed it, the CIA's special advisor on Iraqi WMDs released his report about a week ago, having found no evidence that Saddam was attempting to construct nukes, bioweapons or chemical warheads. In fact, the Duelfer report pretty much undermines everything the Bush regime has told us about our reasons for going to war. The report reaches the conclusion that everyone already knows: Saddam was biding his time in an attempt to get sanctions lifted, trying to strike a bargain for every concession he made to the United Nations, and hoping to avoid losing face in front of the world. Let's look at some of the more enlightening findings.

After the initial invasion, soldiers found two trailers supposedly intended for use as mobile germ warfare labs, which, in the wake of our failure to find anything we could claim constituted a "weapon of mass destruction," Cheney called the "definitive evidence" of Iraqi duplicity. Duelfer, however, has determined that these trailers were intended for generating hydrogen, exactly as the Iraqis claimed all along, and a British bioweapons expert who inspected them on-site said they didn't even look like germ labs. The report found no evidence of SCUD-variant missiles with a range exceeding the U.N.-mandated limit of 150 km, and it states over and over again that Saddam was awaiting the end of the sanctions (which Bush claims were doing no good) to reconstitute his weapons programs. In his testimony to the Armed Services Committee, Duelfer even pointed out that after the Gulf War in 1991, Saddam's advisers told him he needed to restart his nuclear program and he declined, citing the volatility of Iraq's international relations as a reason to put such plans on hold.

So has Bush been playing politics with something as serious as American lives? Are we perhaps spreading something a little more sinister than freedom and democracy? Well, the report only talks about the facts, leaving domestic political issues to the politicians and pundits, but when we're told a week before war that the country we're about to attack has attempted to buy uranium and then told a week after invasion that this information was a mistake, it looks awfully suspicious. When Pakistani officials hold a press conference to announce an al-Qaeda capture two hours before Kerry's convention speech but at midnight by Pakistan's clock, it looks suspicious, and when the "definitive evidence" of Iraqi wrongdoing turns out to be a hydrogen production facility, it looks suspicious. Hey, I bet it will look even more suspicious when the government produces Osama bin Laden's body in the month right before the election.

This week's "Ridiculous Limbaugh Moment": on Monday, Rush jumped on Kerry for (get this) the name of the band that played at his wedding reception. It seems the band was called the French Millionaires, which is outrageous because.... Well, I think it has something to do with Kerry's bride being wealthy, but I can't remember what convoluted path Rush took to make it offensive. Also, a quote from the show I'd like to share: "Fear can be a motivator. If that's what does it for you, that's good. I want you to be afraid." Rush himself saying he wants to scare you into complying with the Republican agenda. Why, why, why is this man allowed to breathe my air?

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