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A Black Falcon
That's how many WMD's there are in Iraq.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/3424831.stm

Oh, David Kay resigned, saying that there are no WMDs, and his replacement says that the chances of finding any are "close to nil".

Ryan
Eh, welcome to six months ago.

A Black Falcon
This just happened today... But the fact that there aren't any WMD is indeed old news. So your response is "it's irrelevant".

Well I just need to say that it's very far from irrelevant... how people can shrug off blatant and constant lies, of much more import than Clinton's little lies that were hiding what is a private matter, is beyond me.

Ryan
You may recall that the reason Clinton's lie caused him so much trouble was that he did it in under oath in front of a grand jury. Thus, he committed a crime.

As far as it's relevance? Well, whatever. So Saddam had none. So why in the bleeding fuck did he not just prove it?

Saddam acted very suspiciously for not having any. Why throw inspectors out? Why show no proof of their destruction? He could have prevented the damn war. He didn't want to, for whatever reason. And since he cast suspicion upon himself, I do not think the war is any less justified for it. I was in favor of pasting Saddam, WMD or no WMD, before it was even an issue. We're safer without him around.

A Black Falcon
Heh... you resort to stupid things like that. Pitiful.

Well, yes, for many years Sadaam did give the inspectors the runaround. However, before they left in 1998 they had found and gotten rid of a lot of his capacity for the banned weapons. After that the sanctions continued making it near-impossible for him to import the things he would need to really restart the program... and then in '02 when Bush started up the war drums he suddenly got scared. He let in the inspectors, if you remember, and let them look for banned weapons... they were not given enough time to finish their search, because Bush was impatient and attacked first, but they were doing a good job. Also, Sadaam agreed to dismantle those missiles that were determined to have a longer range than Iraq is allowed and until we attacked they were working on that. And the Iraqi scientists were saying they had nothing. Oh, Sadaam was deluded into thinking he had a small amount of chem/bio weapons, true, and probably because of that we thought he did too... but the utter lack of anything found by the inspectors should have been a clue. For any administration that was sane and did not hate the international community it would have been...

And again, why Sadaam? There are so many dictators out there who, in 2003, were far worse than Sadaam! He'd been sanctioned into a small-time dictator with a police state... the only reason we attacked him was because Bush wanted revenge for his father and because he's sitting on top of all that oil. You can't say that it's because he was so horrible of late -- yes he was a horrible dictator and yes the world is better off without him but cowboy justice is no justice any sane nation should want a part of.

*edit* Oh, this is a good article. http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/24/arts/24KAGA.html?8hpib

ITS FREE DARNIT WHY IS IT SO HARD TO SIGN UP

Great Rumbler
He certaintly had WMDs at one point and would have made more given half a chance. Besides, he was did mean things to people.

A Black Falcon
But the sanctions meant that as long as they were in place he wouldn't GET that half a chance! As for him being cruel and running a police state, well yeah. But his (in 2003; his worst years by far were until the early '90s...) wasn't as bad as plenty of others that are still in place yet we took him out. It wasn't just because he massacred a whole lot of people ten and more years ago.

Ryan
I won't sign up for NY Times because you can't spell Saddam's name right. :p

alien space marine
http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=535&ncid=535&e=3&u=/ap/20040124/ap_on_re_mi_ea/us_iraq_3


What do you get out of this article?

Obviously now their admiting the truth that all that WMD hype was full of horse shit.To me Bush would have been better off justifying the war by the real reason that he had comited horrible crimes and wouldnt think twice of giving funds to terrorist , But their is alot of other bigger targets then iraq which could have been a worse threat. But I think we should be glad now that Saddam is in Jail and the war is over and atleast Iraq will have a new future and U.S may or may not be safer.

A Black Falcon
I get what I already said -- the lying scum got caught in their lie (which they had deluded themselves into thinking was the truth, because they didn't want to look at the large amount of evidence showing otherwise -- it might have hurt their delustions and they didn't want that...) and don't want to admit it. So they'll say "they might be there" forever, denying the blatantly obvious -- the UN Sanctions were 100% effective (when backed up with the threat of, but not application of, force). The UN works. It does its job. But Bush will never, ever admit that so we get these idiotic stories about how "they might have them" and "in the future they could have built them (completely ignoring the fact that THEY DID NOT HAVE THEM BECAUSE OF THE SANCTIONS (and US troops in the region), WHICH WERE STILL IN PLACE)"... idiotic and stupid.

It's amazing that more people aren't really angry about this.

Ryan
Why should they be?

The only ones angry about it are those who liked Saddam and supported him. He needed to be gone. WMD is an excuse to do it.

And before you start mentioning other dictators, I firmly support unilateral action against anyone who is a threat to us. Real or percieved.

A Black Falcon
BECAUSE BUSH AND HIS TEAM LIED TO OUR FACES EVERY DAY FOR SOMETHING LIKE EIGHTTEEN MONTHS!

And Iraq has proven that taking over a country isn't as easy as it seems... we're badly straining our resources, don't have the troops to do anything else, are tying ourselves down for years as easy targets... it's so idiotic...

Ryan
BECAUSE BUSH AND HIS TEAM LIED TO OUR FACES EVERY DAY FOR SOMETHING LIKE EIGHTTEEN MONTHS!

And Iraq has proven that taking over a country isn't as easy as it seems... we're badly straining our resources, don't have the troops to do anything else, are tying ourselves down for years as easy targets... it's so idiotic...
Okay, general.

A Black Falcon
There are generals who thought Iraq was a very bad idea, you know...

alien space marine
The problem is that if there is a real threat the U.S would be too tied up in iraq to effectively respond. But Saddam is gone and so is billions of U.S dollars that the U.S must bare the weight of its costs for years to come.

A Black Falcon
Yes, those concerns definitely are part of why Iraq was so dumb...

Ryan
There are generals who thought Iraq was a very bad idea, you know...

Some only after they decided to run for president.

A Black Falcon
Everyone's views change after they decide to run... and as for Clark I think before he ran he was more undecided. Though he definitely doesn't exactly strike me as a convincing Democrat...

geoboy
Clark and Lieberman are both closet republicans. :rolleyes:

A Black Falcon
Closet? :) Well Clark's trying to hide the fact that he's an extreme moderate, but Lieberman? He has a lot of trouble even in the attempt...

Ryan
Everyone's views change after they decide to run... and as for Clark I think before he ran he was more undecided. Though he definitely doesn't exactly strike me as a convincing Democrat...

Undecided?

http://www.drudgereport.com/mattwc.htm

Now:


"I've been very consistent... I've been against this war from the beginning," the former general said in Detroit on October 26.

"I was against it last summer, I was against it in the fall, I was against it in the winter, I was against it in the spring. And I'm against it now."

Before:

"President Bush and Tony Blair should be proud of their resolve in the face of so much doubt," Clark wrote on April 10, 2003. "Can anything be more moving than the joyous throngs swarming the streets of Baghdad? Memories of the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the defeat of Milosevic in Belgrade flood back. Statues and images of Saddam are smashed and defiled."

"There's no requirement to have any doctrine here. I mean this is simply a longstanding right of the United States and other nations to take the actions they deem necessary in their self defense," Clark told Congress on September 26, 2002.

"Every president has deployed forces as necessary to take action. He's done so without multilateral support if necessary. He's done so in advance of conflict if necessary. In my experience, I was the commander of the European forces in NATO. When we took action in Kosovo, we did not have United Nations approval to do this and we did so in a way that was designed to preempt Serb ethnic cleansing and regional destabilization there. There were some people who didn' t agree with that decision. The United Nations was not able to agree to support it with a resolution."

Clark continued: "There's no question that Saddam Hussein is a threat... Yes, he has chemical and biological weapons. He's had those for a long time. But the United States right now is on a very much different defensive posture than we were before September 11th of 2001... He is, as far as we know, actively pursuing nuclear capabilities, though he doesn't have nuclear warheads yet. If he were to acquire nuclear weapons, I think our friends in the region would face greatly increased risks as would we."

More Clark: "And, I want to underscore that I think the United States should not categorize this action as preemptive. Preemptive and that doctrine has nothing whatsoever to do with this problem. As Richard Perle so eloquently pointed out, this is a problem that's longstanding. It's been a decade in the making. It needs to be dealt with and the clock is ticking on this."

Clark explained: "I think there's no question that, even though we may not have the evidence as Richard [Perle] says, that there have been such contacts [between Iraq and al Qaeda]. It' s normal. It's natural. These are a lot of bad actors in the same region together. They are going to bump into each other. They are going to exchange information. They're going to feel each other out and see whether there are opportunities to cooperate. That's inevitable in this region, and I think it's clear that regardless of whether or not such evidence is produced of these connections that Saddam Hussein is a threat."

Undecided? Or duplicitous? Or too stupid to remember six months back?

A Black Falcon
Not duplicitous... just doing what is obviously the only thing he can, and denying that he really meant it. Kerry's done that too but he's done a much better job of saying why he voted for the war... but I don't think Clark is a Republican. Yes, he voted for Nixon and Reagan, but then he did vote for Clinton and Gore... as I said I think he's in the center. Not sure which side of center, maybe a little bit right, but to be a candidate in the primary he needs to act more liberal than he is...

Ryan
Not duplicitous... just doing what is obviously the only thing he can, and denying that he really meant it.

I'm sorry, but he gave the war some very rave reviews for someone who secretly didn't mean it. He's either a terrible liar or a terrible idiot.

I don't like to say he lied about supporting the war for the very reason that only the worst of idiots could say that and hope to get away with it. I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he somehow completely forgot the multiple instances where he publically supported the war with as much conviction as he now claims he never did.

A Black Falcon
It does look pretty bad. His best defence by far is that he isn't a politician and shouldn't be expected to understand when to not talk when he's a potential candidate...

Ryan
That's a lie too. He was a public figure for many years and has no excuse for this sort of screwup. I'm not, and I certainly would not have made such a claim when I know I did support it, vocally and publically, and the whole world knew it.

A Black Falcon
Public figures and politicians are different and play by different rules... public figures don't have to watch nearly as closely their opinions on just about everything. Politicians do.

Oh, and as for that stuff he said... I'm sure he's changed his mind, really, about some of that stuff. Given that part of (much of?) why he thought Iraq was a threat was the WMDs which he now knows the Bush people were lying to him about...

Ryan
Maybe he changed his mind. But he said he never supported the war. Ever.

A Black Falcon
You of all people making an issue of a stretching of the truth, after everything Bush has pulled? Hillarious.

Ryan
What Clark is doing is not stretching the truth. He's breaking it, beating it and raping its dog.

It'd be like if Bush said one day that he never claimed that Iraq had WMDs.

A Black Falcon
More Iraq articles.

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/26/international/middleeast/26KAY.html?hp

This is a good read. About Kay and his team, and what happened when they realized they weren't finding anything... very good article.

I think that a lot of the blame lies on people seeing what they were told to expect... but even then... the problems so long-term, so systematic... it'll be interesting to see what they finally blame. :)

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/26/international/middleeast/26IRAQ.html?hp

Interim constitution issues.

And as for lies, Bush has said so many that even beginning to count would take a very long time.

*edit* Clark. http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/26/politics/campaign/26CLAR.html

A Black Falcon
Evil Chemistry Justifies War!

http://www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/ContentServer?pagename=thestar/Layout/Article_Type1&c=Article&cid=1075117169574&call_pageid=968332188492&col=968705899037

Great Rumbler
Evil Chemisty 101: Anthrax and You

A Black Falcon
http://www.cnn.com/2004/US/01/28/sprj.nirq.wmd.kay/index.html

More from Kay. Well, not more than is in that NYT report I linked above, less actually, by a sizable degree, but more if you didn't bother to read that one...

Ryan
What I must wonder:

1. We know he did have them. We know he used them on the Kurds.
2. Liberals love making this out to be some elaborate Bush deception. Why then, if he wanted to start a war and he knew Iraq didn't have the weapons he said they did, did he not plant them? How easy that would have been. Obviously, if there is a willful deception, it is not based in the White House. Bill Clinton also knew Iraq had WMD. He said as much on more than one occasion while he was president. So did Wesley Clark :D.
3. The WMD is gone now. This raises one of two questions the liberal media ignore: "What happened to them, who has them now?" and "Why did Saddam try to bluff us if he really didn't have any"? Instead, they use it as a banner to rally against President Bush.
4. That he did try to call our bluff justified the war. There is no reason we should assume the best from a murderous madman who has used the things against his enemies before.

A Black Falcon
4. That he did try to call our bluff justified the war. There is no reason we should assume the best from a murderous madman who has used the things against his enemies before.

He did? No, I would say he did everything he could to satisfy us in the last few months (within the limits of what his mind would allow) -- allowed in inspectors, let them go anywhere, and started destroying those missiles that had a range longer than the rules allowed... yes before that he resisted, but once we put the question to him "will you allow in inspectors?" with UN support, he said "Yes". I think that this greatly surprised the Bush Administration as I'm pretty sure they were expecting him to refuse and for them to use that as their excuse for war. But he accepted, so they had to come up with something else... and it was that he was hiding his weapons from the inspectors and wasn't telling the truth.

Well now we know that (in 2003, on this issue) he was. Oops.

3. The WMD is gone now. This raises one of two questions the liberal media ignore: "What happened to them, who has them now?" and "Why did Saddam try to bluff us if he really didn't have any"? Instead, they use it as a banner to rally against President Bush.

First, he (and/or his scientists) never restarted his WMD program after the Gulf War to any significant degree becuase he was scared of it being caught by the inspections the UN had set up. Also, the UN sanctions were quite effective in keeping him from banned materials. This too surprised Bush -- they thought that the sanctions weren't working and Sadaam could get whatever he wanted and that the inspections were a joke, and that the UN was worthless. Actually going into Iraq has proved him wrong, and decisively. But Bush will never really admit that the UN is useful... he'll take half steps like allowing their team in to assess elections (becuase he has to, really), but admit that he was wrong? He'll never do that. Old Europe and all that.

Oh, and Sadaam got rid of his weapons over the 12 years since the first war slowly... but without a new program, and with inspectors there until '98 looking, he could only do so much. And if you forget those inspectors were pretty successful in finding a lot of stuff. As for 2002, when the inspectors returned I think, in the interim years everyone seems to have thought that he'd rebuild... but evidently the sanctions worked, and fear of future inspections had a hold... oh, and Clinton's 1998 bombing of Iraqi weapons facilities hurt a lot too. Certainly after that they didn't make any new bio or chem weapons.

Why did they act so secretive when openness would show they had nothing? Well they were open as much as Sadaam's pride would allow... but he hates us and would never just allow us in to do as we please... and also I do think that he thought he had weapons, and that his scientists were tricking him with made up programs and the like to satisfy him that they were working on weapons when actually they were not for various reasons.

There was also an interesting report I read recently that said that while no Republican Guard troops had chem or bio weapons, a lot of the commanders said "we don't, but other Guard troops do"... so clearly many in the Iraqi army thought they had weapons. I think Sadaam thought they had something. Not much, but something, and that kept him from being fully open... but his hatred for America would be a bigger factor I think. He would be uncorroporative just because of spite, surely. Oh, and he DID let in the inspectors, and he DID let them in to all the facilities, and he DID start destroying those missiles, so you are somewhat off base there...

As for what happened to them, I think that they either destroyed them in the desert somewhere or buried them in the desert somewhere. Probably destroyed.

1. We know he did have them. We know he used them on the Kurds.

Yes, in the '80s and maybe early '90s before the sanctions and inspections, he did have banned weapons. But the US knew. We helped him get it after all, in the Reagan administration and before! We knew he was gassing Kurds and Iranians, but since they were stopping the even-more-hated Iranians, any amount of evil was allowed the Iraqis... Sadaam went into Kuwait because he thought that just like with Iran we wouldn't react. He was shocked to see us react to what he did because of how we'd allowed anything in the Iran war... (remember the pic of Rumdsfeld shaking Sadaam's hand?)

2. Liberals love making this out to be some elaborate Bush deception. Why then, if he wanted to start a war and he knew Iraq didn't have the weapons he said they did, did he not plant them? How easy that would have been. Obviously, if there is a willful deception, it is not based in the White House. Bill Clinton also knew Iraq had WMD. He said as much on more than one occasion while he was president. So did Wesley Clark .

This is a good question. You are right, Clinton thought he had stuff. And when the inspections started he indisputably did. But they found a lot, and he got rid of more so they couldn't find it, and his production never really started up again... and the thing with the defector (Sadaam's relative who fled to Jordan, gave some intel, was lured back later, and killed by Sadaam) also convinced him to get rid of stuff. And then of course in '98 we rocketted some of his production. But after that... yeah, the Clinton administration and the CIA evidently still thought he had stuff when he didn't.

I highly recommend this article, it says a lot of what I would here, but in greater detail, about how the CIA missed cues... fine I'll post it, you won't bother...

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/26/international/middleeast/26KAY.html?hp

Ex-Inspector Says C.I.A. Missed Disarray in Iraqi Arms Program
By JAMES RISEN

Published: January 26, 2022

ASHINGTON, Jan. 25 American intelligence agencies failed to detect that Iraq's unconventional weapons programs were in a state of disarray in recent years under the increasingly erratic leadership of Saddam Hussein, the C.I.A.`s former chief weapons inspector said in an interview late Saturday.

The inspector, David A. Kay, who led the government's efforts to find evidence of Iraq's illicit weapons programs until he resigned on Friday, said the C.I.A. and other intelligence agencies did not realize that Iraqi scientists had presented ambitious but fanciful weapons programs to Mr. Hussein and had then used the money for other purposes.

Dr. Kay also reported that Iraq attempted to revive its efforts to develop nuclear weapons in 2000 and 2001, but never got as far toward making a bomb as Iran and Libya did.

He said Baghdad was actively working to produce a biological weapon using the poison ricin until the American invasion last March. But in general, Dr. Kay said, the C.I.A. and other agencies failed to recognize that Iraq had all but abandoned its efforts to produce large quantities of chemical or biological weapons after the first Persian Gulf war, in 1991.

From interviews with Iraqi scientists and other sources, he said, his team learned that sometime around 1997 and 1998, Iraq plunged into what he called a "vortex of corruption," when government activities began to spin out of control because an increasingly isolated and fantasy-riven Saddam Hussein had insisted on personally authorizing major projects without input from others.

After the onset of this "dark ages," Dr. Kay said, Iraqi scientists realized they could go directly to Mr. Hussein and present fanciful plans for weapons programs, and receive approval and large amounts of money. Whatever was left of an effective weapons capability, he said, was largely subsumed into corrupt money-raising schemes by scientists skilled in the arts of lying and surviving in a fevered police state.

"The whole thing shifted from directed programs to a corrupted process," Dr. Kay said. "The regime was no longer in control; it was like a death spiral. Saddam was self-directing projects that were not vetted by anyone else. The scientists were able to fake programs."

In interviews after he was captured, Tariq Aziz, the former deputy prime minister, told Dr. Kay that Mr. Hussein had become increasingly divorced from reality during the last two years of his rule. Mr. Hussein would send Mr. Aziz manuscripts of novels he was writing, even as the American-led coalition was gearing up for war, Dr. Kay said.

Dr. Kay said the fundamental errors in prewar intelligence assessments were so grave that he would recommend that the Central Intelligence Agency and other organizations overhaul their intelligence collection and analytical efforts.

Dr. Kay said analysts had come to him, "almost in tears, saying they felt so badly that we weren't finding what they had thought we were going to find I have had analysts apologizing for reaching the conclusions that they did."

In response to Dr. Kay's comments, an intelligence official said Sunday that while some prewar assessments may have been wrong, "it is premature to say that the intelligence community's judgments were completely wrong or largely wrong there are still a lot of answers we need." The official added, however, that the C.I.A. had already begun an internal review to determine whether its analytical processes were sound.

Dr. Kay said that based on his team's interviews with Iraqi scientists, reviews of Iraqi documents and examinations of facilities and other materials, the administration was also almost certainly wrong in its prewar belief that Iraq had any significant stockpiles of illicit weapons.

"I'm personally convinced that there were not large stockpiles of newly produced weapons of mass destruction," Dr. Kay said. "We don't find the people, the documents or the physical plants that you would expect to find if the production was going on.

"I think they gradually reduced stockpiles throughout the 1990's. Somewhere in the mid-1990's, the large chemical overhang of existing stockpiles was eliminated."

(Page 2 of 4)

While it is possible Iraq kept developing "test amounts" of chemical weapons and was working on improved methods of production, he said, the evidence is strong that "they did not produce large amounts of chemical weapons throughout the 1990's."

Regarding biological weapons, he said there was evidence that the Iraqis continued research and development "right up until the end" to improve their ability to produce ricin. "They were mostly researching better methods for weaponization," Dr. Kay said. "They were maintaining an infrastructure, but they didn't have large-scale production under way."

He added that Iraq did make an effort to restart its nuclear weapons program in 2000 and 2001, but that the evidence suggested that the program was rudimentary at best and would have taken years to rebuild, after being largely abandoned in the 1990's. "There was a restart of the nuclear program," he said. "But the surprising thing is that if you compare it to what we now know about Iran and Libya, the Iraqi program was never as advanced," Dr. Kay said.

Dr. Kay said Iraq had also maintained an active ballistic missile program that was receiving significant foreign assistance until the start of the American invasion. He said it appeared that money was put back into the nuclear weapons program to restart the effort in part because the Iraqis realized they needed some kind of payload for their new rockets.

While he urged that the hunt should continue in Iraq, he said he believed "85 percent of the significant things" have already been uncovered, and cautioned that severe looting in Iraq after Mr. Hussein was toppled in April had led to the loss of many crucial documents and other materials. That means it will be virtually impossible to ever get a complete picture of what Iraq was up to before the war, he added.

"There is going to be an irreducible level of ambiguity because of all the looting," Dr. Kay said.

Dr. Kay said he believed that Iraq was a danger to the world, but not the same threat that the Bush administration publicly detailed.

"We know that terrorists were passing through Iraq," he said. "And now we know that there was little control over Iraq's weapons capabilities. I think it shows that Iraq was a very dangerous place. The country had the technology, the ability to produce, and there were terrorist groups passing through the country and no central control."

C.I.A. Missed Signs of Chaos

But Dr. Kay said the C.I.A. missed the significance of the chaos in the leadership and had no idea how badly that chaos had corrupted Iraq's weapons capabilities or the threat it raised of loose scientific knowledge being handed over to terrorists. "The system became so corrupt, and we missed that," he said.

He said it now appeared that Iraq had abandoned the production of illicit weapons and largely eliminated its stockpiles in the 1990's in large part because of Baghdad's concerns about the United Nations weapons inspection process. He said Iraqi scientists and documents show that Baghdad was far more concerned about United Nations inspections than Washington had ever realized.

"The Iraqis say that they believed that Unscom was more effective, and they didn't want to get caught," Dr. Kay said, using an acronym for the inspection program, the United Nations Special Commission.

The Iraqis also feared the disclosures that would come from the 1995 defection of Hussein Kamel, Mr. Hussein's son-in-law, who had helped run the weapons programs. Dr. Kay said one Iraqi document that had been found showed the extent to which the Iraqis believed that Mr. Kamel's defection would hamper any efforts to continue weapons programs.

In addition, Dr. Kay said, it is now clear that an American bombing campaign against Iraq in 1998 destroyed much of the remaining infrastructure in chemical weapons programs.

Dr. Kay said his team had uncovered no evidence that Niger had tried to sell uranium to Iraq for its nuclear weapons program. In his State of the Union address in 2003, President Bush reported that British intelligence had determined that Iraq was trying to import uranium from an African nation, and Niger's name was later put forward.

(Page 3 of 4)

"We found nothing on Niger," Dr. Kay said. He added that there was evidence that someone did approach the Iraqis claiming to be able to sell uranium and diamonds from another African country, but apparently nothing came of the approach. The original reports on Niger have been found to be based on forged documents, and the Bush administration has since backed away from its initial assertions.

Dr. Kay added that there was now a consensus within the United States intelligence community that mobile trailers found in Iraq and initially thought to be laboratories for biological weapons were actually designed to produce hydrogen for weather balloons, or perhaps to produce rocket fuel. While using the trailers for such purposes seems bizarre, Dr. Kay said, "Iraq was doing a lot of nonsensical things" under Mr. Hussein.

The intelligence reports that Iraq was poised to use chemical weapons against invading troops were false, apparently based on faulty reports and Iraqi disinformation, Dr. Kay said.

When American troops found that Iraqi troops had stored defensive chemical-weapons suits and antidotes, Washington assumed the Iraqi military was poised to use chemicals against American forces. But interviews with Iraqi military officers and others have shown that the Iraqis kept the gear because they feared Israel would join an American-led invasion and use chemical weapons against them.

Role of Republican Guards

Dr. Kay said interviews with senior officers of the Special Republican Guards, Mr. Hussein's most elite units, had suggested that prewar intelligence reports were wrong in warning that these units had chemical weapons and would use them against American forces as they closed in on Baghdad.

The former Iraqi officers reported that no Special Republican Guard units had chemical or biological weapons, he said. But all of the officers believed that some other Special Republican Guard unit had chemical weapons.

"They all said they didn't have it, but they thought other units had it," Dr. Kay said. He said it appeared they were the victims of a disinformation campaign orchestrated by Mr. Hussein.

Dr. Kay said there was also no conclusive evidence that Iraq had moved any unconventional weapons to Syria, as some Bush administration officials have suggested. He said there had been persistent reports from Iraqis saying they or someone they knew had see cargo being moved across the border, but there is no proof that such movements involved weapons materials.

Dr. Kay said the basic problem with the way the C.I.A. tried to gauge Iraq's weapons programs is now painfully clear: for five years, the agency lacked its own spies in Iraq who could provide credible information.

During the 1990's, Dr. Kay said, the agency became spoiled by on-the-ground intelligence that it obtained from United Nations weapons inspectors. But the quality of the information plunged after the teams were withdrawn in 1998.

"Unscom was like crack cocaine for the C.I.A.," Dr. Kay said. "They could see something from a satellite or other technical intelligence, and then direct the inspectors to go look at it."

The agency became far too dependent on spy satellites, intercepted communications and intelligence developed by foreign spies and by defectors and exiles, Dr. Kay said. While he said the agency analysts who were monitoring Iraq's weapons programs did the best they could with what they had, he argued that the agency failed to make it clear to American policy makers that their assessments were increasingly based on very limited information.

"I think that the system should have a way for an analyst to say, `I don't have enough information to make a judgment,' " Dr. Kay said. "There is really not a way to do that under the current system."

He added that while the analysts included caveats on their reports, those passages "tended to drop off as the reports would go up the food chain" inside the government.

As a result, virtually everyone in the United States intelligence community during both the Clinton and the current Bush administrations thought Iraq still had the illicit weapons, he said. And the government became a victim of its own certainty.

(Page 4 of 4)

"Alarm bells should have gone off when everyone believes the same thing," Dr. Kay said. "No one stood up and said, `Let's examine the footings for these conclusions.' I think you ought to have a place for contrarian views in the system."

Finds No Pressure From Bush

Dr. Kay said he was convinced that the analysts were not pressed by the Bush administration to make certain their prewar intelligence reports conformed to a White House agenda on Iraq.

Last year, some C.I.A. analysts said they had felt pressed to find links between Iraq and Al Qaeda to suit the administration. While Dr. Kay said he has no knowledge about that issue, he did not believe that pressure was placed on analysts regarding the weapons programs.

"All the analysts I have talked to said they never felt pressured on W.M.D.," he said. "Everyone believed that they had W.M.D."

Dr. Kay also said he never felt pressed by the Bush administration to shape his own reports on the status of Iraq's weapons. He said that in a White House meeting with Mr. Bush last August, the president urged him to uncover what really happened.

"The only comment I ever had from the president was to find the truth," Dr. Kay said. "I never got any pressure to find a certain outcome."

Dr. Kay, a former United Nations inspector who was brought in last summer to run the Iraq Survey Group by George J. Tenet, the director of central intelligence, said he resigned his post largely because he disagreed with the decision in November by the administration and the Pentagon to shift intelligence resources from the hunt for banned weapons to counterinsurgency efforts inside Iraq. Dr. Kay is being succeeded by Charles A. Duelfer, another former United Nations inspector, who has also expressed skepticism about whether the United States will find any chemical or biological weapons.

Dr. Kay said the decision to shift resources away from the weapons hunt came at a time of "near panic" among American officials in Baghdad because of rising casualties caused by bombings and ambushes of American troops.

He added that the decision ran counter to written assurances he had been given when he took the job, and that the shift in resources had severely hampered the weapons hunt.

He said that there is only a limited amount of time left to conduct a thorough search before a new Iraqi government takes over in the summer, and that there are already signs of resistance to the work by Iraqi government officials.

alien space marine
North Korea has nukes we arnt you blasting them ? They wouldnt have any problems with selling weapons to terrorist under the table as they are poor desperate enough and unlike Saddam they could actually attack north america with a long range missle. I think the reason Bush went into Iraq was because he was easy picking and Iraq had oil to repay the U.S in the future. It is great that Saddam is in Jail and Iraq has a new future. But in regards to the U.S safety it didnt do anything but stab a hole in your economy and deplete your war stocks and Kill 550 american troops, In the end it just gave you a small satisfaction of removing a bastard tyrant. According to CNN Poll 76% of americans dont feel any safer with Saddam gone.

A Black Falcon
After you finish that...

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/29/opinion/29DOWD.html
OP-ED COLUMNIST
Dump Cheney Now!
By MAUREEN DOWD

Published: January 29, 2022

ASHINGTON The awful part is that George W. Bush and Saddam Hussein were both staring into the same cracked spook- house mirror.

Thanks to David Kay, we now have an amazing image of the president and the dictator, both divorced from reality over weapons, glaring at each other from opposite sides of bizarro, paranoid universes where fiction trumped fact.

It would be like a wacky Peter Sellers satire if so many Iraqis and Americans hadn't died in Iraq.

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These two would-be world-class tough guys were willing to go to extraordinary lengths to show that they couldn't be pushed around. Their trusted underlings misled them with fanciful information on advanced Iraqi weapons programs that they credulously believed because it fit what they wanted to hear.

Saddam was swept away writing his romance novels, while President Bush was swept away with the romance of rewriting the end of the 1991 Persian Gulf war to finish off the thug who tried to kill his dad.

The two men both had copies of "Crime and Punishment" Condi Rice gave Mr. Bush the novel on his trip to Russia in 2002, and Saddam had Dostoyevsky down in the spider hole but neither absorbed its lesson: that you can't put yourself above rules just because you think you're superior.

When Dr. Kay spoke these words on W.M.D. "It turns out we were all wrong, probably, in my judgment, and that is most disturbing" both America and Iraq learned that when you try too hard to control the picture of reality, you risk losing your grasp of it.

In interviews, Dr. Kay defended the war with Iraq, saying that the U.S. "has often entered the right war for the wrong reason," and he defended Mr. Bush, saying, "if anyone was abused by the intelligence, it was the president." He also told Congress "there's no evidence that I can think of, that I know of" that Saddam collaborated with Al Qaeda.

Testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee yesterday, the ex-C.I.A. weapons sleuth used a metaphor that was perhaps inspired by Martha Stewart, comparing the C.I.A. with a lousy stockbroker.

"If I were your broker," he told Senator Jack Reed, "and you were investing on my advice . . . and at the end of the day, I said Enron was the greatest company in the world, and you had lost a substantial amount of money on it because it turned out differently, you would think I had abused you."

Certainly the C.I.A. has a lot to answer for. For a bargain price of $30 billion a year, our intelligence aces have been spectacularly off. They failed to warn us about 9/11 and missed the shame spiral of a deranged Saddam, hoodwinked by his top scientists.

They were probably relying too much on the Arabian Nights tales of Ahmad Chalabi, eager to spread the word of Saddam's imaginary nuclear-tipped weapons juggernaut because it suited his own ambitions and that of his Pentagon pals.

But while he is skittering away from his claims about Iraqi weapons, President Bush is not racing toward accountability. It's an election year.

The Times's David Sanger wrote about an administration debate "over whether Mr. Bush should soon call for some kind of reform of the intelligence-gathering process. But the officials said Mr. Bush's aides were searching for a formula that would allow them to acknowledge intelligence-gathering problems without blaming" the C.I.A. or its chief.

The president wants to act as though he has a problem but not a scandal, which he can fix without rolling heads of those who made honest mistakes or dishonest ones by rigging the intelligence.

Dick Cheney, who declared that Saddam had nuclear capability and who visited C.I.A. headquarters in the summer of 2002 to make sure the raw intelligence was properly interpreted, is sticking to his deluded guns. (And still trash-talking those lame trailers.)

The vice president pushed to slough off the allies and the U.N. and go to war partly because he thought that slapping a weakened bully like Saddam would scare other dictators. He must have reckoned there would be no day of reckoning on weapons once Saddam was gone.

So it had to be some new definition of chutzpah on Tuesday, when Mr. Cheney, exuding more infallibility than the pope, presented him with a crystal dove.

Ryan
North Korea has nukes we arnt you blasting them ? They wouldnt have any problems with selling weapons to terrorist under the table as they are poor desperate enough and unlike Saddam they could actually attack north america with a long range missle. I think the reason Bush went into Iraq was because he was easy picking and Iraq had oil to repay the U.S in the future. It is great that Saddam is in Jail and Iraq has a new future. But in regards to the U.S safety it didnt do anything but stab a hole in your economy and deplete your war stocks and Kill 550 american troops, In the end it just gave you a small satisfaction of removing a bastard tyrant. According to CNN Poll 76% of americans dont feel any safer with Saddam gone.
One other point I should have added is that you hear a lot of people say "why don't we take out (X country/dictator) instead of Iraq?

Even if we did, the same postmodern hippie movement would fight it.

I'm all for taking out Korea, and I feel that it will probably come to that someday without our having to instigate it. Kim Jong Il seems to have a deathwish.

A Black Falcon
Actually he's doing the nuclear thing, I think, to try to keep us from attacking him... that and his million man army not far from Seoul.

Ryan
Actually he's doing the nuclear thing, I think, to try to keep us from attacking him... that and his million man army not far from Seoul.
I can't remember the article now because it was about two weeks ago, but it was kinda funny. The US sent a weapons expert over there to see how advanced their weapons production was, and he literally mocked them. It went something like this...

Korean: *shows plutonium elements* Now you see we have the deterrent!
Expert: ...No. You prove nothing. It's like saying since you have steel that you can make a car.

I paraphrase loosely but that's the gist of it. Apparently the Korean in question searched hard to find someone higher in authority who could cement their claim, and couldn't.

It's a sticky situation, but it's good to know that at least some of the organization can comically bumble when the spotlight's on em. :haha:

A Black Falcon
Yes, the nuclear weapon claims are sketchy. They clearly have an advanced program, however, and it should be taken seriously... and as I said their army is a huge threat. We just can't fight them.

Ryan
Yes, the nuclear weapon claims are sketchy. They clearly have an advanced program, however, and it should be taken seriously... and as I said their army is a huge threat. We just can't fight them.
But we can bomb them back to the stone age!

Happy thoughts keep us young. :)

A Black Falcon
But they would do a lot of damage to South Korea... there'd be massive civilian casualties if North Korea wanted them and I don't think that that would stop them...

Ryan
Well, if we wait long enough, they'll starve to death. Hopefully.

A Black Falcon
The people will, don't know about the army... it's just such a horrible situation. A extremely brutal repressive regime a thousand times worse than Sadaam was by last year, but we can't do much about it...

alien space marine
I remeber a old outer limits episode were a North korean agent got surgically alterd to look like the president of the U.S and then Kim Pingyong puppeted the u.s like a Pawn, Untill the Vice president killed a Korean who looked like him and was gonna replace him untill he figured out that the president was murderd and a Spy is the president.

Great Rumbler
That would never work. Do you realize how long it would take to train someone to talk and act like President Bush?!

A Black Falcon
"No, no, you're using grammar and real words again! We need to start all over..."

Ryan
Is that in reference to Bush or Dean? :D

Great Rumbler
YEAAGGHH!!!

Geno
Rarely is the question asked: is our children learning?

Great Rumbler
Yeah, he says some crazy stuff sometimes.

A Black Falcon
Dean uses correct sentences even when he is saying something he shouldn't, I think... well, most of the time... :)

Bush needs a script to say anything and even then he messes up a lot.

Ryan
Dean uses correct sentences even when he is saying something he shouldn't, I think... well, most of the time... :)

Bush needs a script to say anything and even then he messes up a lot.
Nothing wrong with that. He's only human, after all. He's gotten a lot better than he was at first.

Some of his screwups were really funny though.

Dean's hilarity isn't really in his grammar but his... well... animalistic, even childish behavior. He seems like he's but a few steps away from going Bulworth and calling people 'motherfuckers'.

A Black Falcon
He's gotten better because he has learned how to read a script that is in front of him.

Ryan
They're all scriptreaders. Some are just better at it than others.

A Black Falcon
Some of them don't need scripts for EVERY TIME THEY LEAVE THEIR PRIVATE OFFICE... and can actually "write" themeselves... well not all writes speeches, but I am sure that any of the Democrats is far more capable at it than the idiot in charge.

A Black Falcon
http://www.tcforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=803&page=2

What will you do, Mr. Bush... I think that a nonpartisan investigation into how the intelligence was so wrong and so wrongly presented for so long is a very good idea.

Geno
"Who cares about the French? They don't even have their own word for entrepreneurship!"

That quote is only an urban legend, but it'd be hilarious if Bush actually said that.

A Black Falcon
:D

... it'd be just like him though... :)

A Black Falcon
http://www.cnn.com/2004/US/02/02/sprj.nirq.iraq.wmd/index.html

Good. Now lets hope it's nonpartizan... but with Bush I doubt it.

A Black Falcon
David Kay... good article, think I'll post it. :)

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/02/02/international/middleeast/02KAY.html

Ex-Arms Inspector Now in Center of a Political Maelstrom
By CHRISTOPHER MARQUIS

Published: February 2, 2022

ASHINGTON, Feb. 1 David A. Kay, the arms inspector who changed his mind about the existence of unconventional weapons in Iraq, is perplexed by all the fuss he has caused. The weapons are simply not there, he says; it is empirical.

Yet since he went public with his findings in recent days, Dr. Kay, a plain-spoken technocrat, has been in the center of a political maelstrom. The C.I.A. is fighting for its reputation, and the Bush administration is battling accusations that it went to war on the basis of false information.

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Contending that he has the facts on his side, Dr. Kay comes across as a political innocent. He seems genuinely surprised to learn that some members of the Central Intelligence Agency are furious at him for criticizing the agency that hired him. He dismisses lawmakers who call him biased as practitioners of "gotcha politics."

His testimony has stunned official Washington. Such independence is rarely witnessed in a city where "mistakes are made" note the passive voice but almost never by one's bosses, and controversial or unpopular findings are muddied up with double talk.

At 63, Dr. Kay is an unlikely celebrity. He is short, with wire-rimmed glasses and a brush mustache, as nondescript as any bureaucrat, scientist or spy. But now, everyone is noticing the man who seemed destined to be overlooked.

He almost seems to be enjoying himself.

He chats amiably and doles out corny wisecracks, saying his wife, a retired teacher, who has banished him to a basement office at home in Leesburg, Va., "has threatened to send me to an undisclosed location." He recalls how his first granddaughter was born while he was in Iraq, and he had to rely on e-mailed photographs. Photography is his hobby.

"People probably think it's been more painful to me than it has," he said.

He is puzzled by the administration's response to his testimony. Senior officials have clung to statements that the inspections are continuing and therefore inconclusive.

"I'm sort of mystified," Dr. Kay said. "Quite frankly, the easier political strategy would be to say, `Look, everybody agrees that we're better off with Saddam Hussein gone, but on the other hand, it's clear that not all our advance information was good.' "

In an hourlong phone conversation on Thursday, Dr. Kay said he had been taking calls from old high school chums and several intelligence officers who are friends, but had not heard a peep from the White House or from George J. Tenet, the director of central intelligence.

He described the intelligence breakdown as a systems failure and said only an independent investigation would be able to set things right. He warned of "the difficulties we have of closed orders in secret societies to reform themselves."

Despite all the commotion he has caused in an election year, no less Dr. Kay sees an opportunity to overhaul an intelligence service that has stumbled badly for years.

For some, Dr. Kay's candor makes him nothing short of a hero.

"Not only does he say he was wrong, but he is willing to tackle the institutional questions of being in error," said Frank J. Gaffney Jr., the president of the Center for Security Policy in Washington. Mr. Gaffney urged President Bush to swallow any annoyance he might feel and ask Dr. Kay to replace Mr. Tenet in his job.

Yet for others, Dr. Kay's honesty stopped short of the White House gates. Administration critics have accused the president and his advisers of exaggerating intelligence reports, cherry-picking data that was most helpful to their war strategy and pressuring analysts to view Iraq as an imminent threat. Dr. Kay holds that, based on the information provided to the administration, "it was reasonable to conclude that Iraq posed an imminent threat."

Senator Carl Levin, a Michigan Democrat who keeps a long list of administration claims made to justify the Iraq war, accused Dr. Kay of trying to shield the president.

"He is trying quite clearly to put the responsibility on the intelligence community and deflect it from the administration," Senator Levin said in an interview. "He obviously supports the president."

Dr. Kay, who calls himself a political independent, does not see it that way. "I think from the record it's the intelligence community that abused the president," he said. "In general the flow of intelligence turned out not to be true."

Nowhere, perhaps, are Dr. Kay and his findings more of a topic for discussion than at the C.I.A.

Melvin A. Goodman, who served 20 years in the C.I.A. and now teaches at the National War College, said intelligence officers were complaining that Dr. Kay had bowed to political pressures.

"They feel the way he aimed his remarks at the C.I.A. exclusively and let the administration off the hook was totally one-sided and unfair," said Mr. Goodman, who insists that analysts felt pressured to provide the most dire data to the policy makers. "He caved."

Yet many administration defenders, including some of the staunchest supporters of the war, say Dr. Kay got it right. "The president is a consumer of intelligence, not a producer of it," said Richard Perle, a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and an ardent proponent of the war. "I have long thought our intelligence in the gulf has been woefully inadequate."

Dr. Kay said he had received a number of supportive calls from members of the intelligence agencies. He said an e-mail message arrived from one officer, who had served as station chief in five countries, "saying, `You said exactly what needs to be said.' "

Once the dust settles over this issue, Dr. Kay and his wife want to take a vacation somewhere warm. Then, he will set about writing a book or two. Unlike in 1991, when he was flooded with book offers, this time no publishers have approached him. He would probably disappoint them. He wants to write a scholarly tome on suppressing
weapons proliferators, he said. "Look," he said, "I don't do kiss and tells."

Interesting... shielding the president is hardly surprising from a Bush apointee, but even so he has been pretty blunt and even with that has definitely shaken things up. :)

A Black Falcon
http://slate.msn.com//Default.aspx?id=2094833&MSID=936B8F1ACC754F51A533EB198E276137

Our glorious history of major intelligence failures...