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Is everybody really doing it?

by grandpaw7 / November 5, 2005 8:59 AM PST

Those supporting Bush's prewar claim that Iraq had WMDs defend this false claim on the ground that ?everyone? believed that Iraq had WMDs and constituted an imminent threat.

But what is the evidence that ?everyone? believed this? It isn?t enough to say they did; there should be evidence that they did. I?ve not seen the evidence.

And for other nations who did believe as the U.S. did, on what evidence did they base their beliefs? Only on what the U.S. told them? Or did they have independent evidence of their own? I?ve never seen this discussed.

We do know that France, Germany and Russia strongly opposed the invasion of Iraq. Do you think that France, Germany and Russia thought that Iraq could launch an imminent WMD attack on them but decided there was no need to do anything about it? Surely no one should doubt that if Iraq did attack the U.S., the nations of Europe would be quickly involved. Iraq could not pose an imminent threat to the U.S. without also posing an imminent threat to Europe. Yet, these nations did not consider that going to war was appropriate.

But what about Italy, Spain, Australia, and Japan? They joined the U.S. coalition, didn't they?

But joining the coalition is not the same as having evidence that Iraq had WMDs capable of attacking the U,S. or other nations. Did they rely on what the United States told them, or did they have evidence of their own? I've never since any claim of the latter.

Nations did not easily join the coalition. There was much pressure brought to bear by the Bush administration to force reluctant nations to join. Would that pressure have been necessary if these nations had evidence of their own that Iraq had WMDs and was an imminent threat? Remember that it would have been much easier for Iraq to attack nations in Europe than to attack the United States.

Before accepting that often heard claim that ?everybody?s doing it?, we should evidence that the claim is true. I?ve not seen such evidence.

Random Quotes:

In January 2003, United Nations weapons inspectors reported that they had found no indication that Iraq had a currently active program to make nuclear weapons, and that there was no credible evidence that Iraq possessed nuclear weapons.

The Washington Post reported in November 2000, "The CIA does not agree that Iraq possesses a crude nuclear weapon. 'We don't believe they have the fissile material required for a nuclear weapon,' said one senior U.S. official. ... 'Nor do we believe they currently have the infrastructure to build a nuclear weapon.'"

US Secretary of State Colin Powell has conceded that Iraq may not have possessed any stocks of weapons of mass destruction before the war last year.
His comments came after the former head of the US weapons inspection team, David Kay, said he did not believe there were any weapons stockpiles.

In May 2004 the New York Times published an editorial which stated that its journalism in the build up to war had sometimes been lax. It appears that the Iraqi exiles used for the stories about WMD were either ignorant as to the real status of Iraq's WMD or lied to journalists to achieve their own ends.

In the build up to the 2003 war the New York Times published a number of stories claiming to prove that Iraq possessed WMD. One story in particular, written by Judith Miller helped persuade the American public that Iraq had WMD: in September 2002 she wrote about an intercepted shipment of aluminum tubes which the NYT said were to be used to develop nuclear material. It is now clear that they could not be used for that purpose.

Does anyone think that the New York Times was alone in cooking the books?

"I've never given Iraq a clean bill of health," Ritter told Time in September 2002. "I've said that no one has backed up any allegations that Iraq has constituted weapons-of-mass-destruction capability with anything that resembles substantive fact."

Holding WMD Liars Accountable by John Nichols
Now that the Bush administration has finally stopped wasting millions of tax dollars each month on the futile search for the weapons of mass destruction it promised would be found in Iraq, it is time for an accounting.
First off, let's be clear about the fact that there was never any credible evidence to suggest that Iraq had a serious WMD program -- let alone the "stockpiles" of already-produced weaponry that the president and his aides suggested.
Twenty-three members of the Senate and 133 members of the House rejected the intensive lobbying by the administration and the pliable press for the use-of-force resolution that Bush would use as his authorization to launch a preemptive war.
Among those who voted "no" were the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee and key members of the Senate and House committees responsible for intelligence, armed services and foreign relations -- all of whom had followed the issue for years and saw no evidence of a threat sufficient to justify an invasion of Iraq.

Former chief U.N. arms inspector Hans Blix felt Washington was intimidating him to produce reports that would justify military action in the run-up to the Iraq war, the head of the U.N. nuclear watchdog said on Friday.

* U.N nuclear weapons inspector Mohammed El Baradei
issued his most positive statement March 7, saying, ?After
three months of intrusive inspections, we have to date found
no evidence or plausible indication of the revival of a nuclear
weapons program in Iraq.?
-- St. Paul Pioneer Press, March 8, 2003

*France, Germany and Russia issued Feb. 24 an informal
?Memorandum? calling for at least four more months of weapons
inspections in Iraq. It says in part: ?? So far, the conditions
for using force against Iraq are not fulfilled: While suspicions
remain, no evidence has been given that Iraq still
possesses weapons of mass destruction or capabilities in
this field.? -- New York Times, Feb. 25, 2003

* In a lengthy briefing for UN journalists, UN chemical
and biological weapons inspector Hans Blix denied or discounted
four major claims made by Bush Administration officials:
1) Mobile biological labs: Blix said his inspectors had
reports about the claim but no evidence. ?We have never
found one,? he said; 2) Inspectors providing information to
Iraq: Blix denied that any information had been leaked from
any of his inspectors; 3) Iraq intercepting conversations by
UN inspectors; Blix said it was ?impossible? that Iraq had
been able to spy on UNMOVIC telephone conversations because
of the high level of security of UNMOVIC communications
operations; and 4) Iraq hiding weapons material inside
or outside Iraq: Blix said his team had seen no evidence that
Iraq had moved weapons material just before the inspectors?
arrival in order to hide it. -- New York Times, Feb. 5, 2003

* [UN chemical and biological weapons inspector Hans]
?Blix said his team had ... turned up ?no trace? of chemical or
biological agents even in liquid-filled warheads.?
-- New York Times, Jan. 31, 2003

* ?Inspectors have not found any conclusive evidence
to support the Bush administration?s charges that Mr. Hussein
is holding weapons of mass destruction.?
-- New York Times, Jan. 16, 2003

* ?International arms inspectors told the Security Council
that they had not yet found any ?smoking gun.??
-- New York Times, Jan. 10, 2003

I am not saying that the other nations did not believe that Iraq had WMDs and was an imminent threat, or that they had independent evidence of their own. I am simply saying that, as best as I can tell, the evidence that this is the case amounts mostly to simply saying that it is the case, with no underlying support.

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Great hindsight gramps
by duckman / November 5, 2005 9:23 AM PST

Can you pick yesterdays lottery numbers too?

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sorry, duckman
by grandpaw7 / November 5, 2005 11:12 AM PST
In reply to: Great hindsight gramps

They're hidden inside those missing WMDs. More seriouly, my post has nothing to do with hindsight. But hold onto your post; you might one day find a place where it is relevant.

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Not just hindsight, DM.
by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / November 5, 2005 1:23 PM PST
In reply to: Great hindsight gramps

We saw what happened to Wilson when he dared tell the truth about the WMDs before the invasion. Isn't it likely that not so subtle threats were made about the future career prospects of analysts who didn't tell the Administration what it wanted to hear about the issue? It's not that the Bush Administration was honestly mistaken -- it's that they intentionally distorted the evidence and deceived the Congress, the American people, and the world to make the case for an invasion that never should have happened. Yes, it's hindsight in that at the time those who suspected that were called "Bush-bashers" and "unpatriotic," but should Bush be given a pass for his pattern of lies and distortion? But now it's clear who was right and who was wrong, and the latest polls clearly show that the majority of Americans are finally calling him to account -- too bad that the deserved impeachment has no chance (at least until after the 2006 elections, and with the 2/3 requirement, realistically not even then).

-- Dave K, Speakeasy Moderator
click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

The opinions expressed above are my own,
and do not necessarily reflect those of CNET!

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He dared to tell the "truth" before the war?
by Evie / November 5, 2005 8:55 PM PST

He didn't even tell it after!

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All I know is what I read
by Steven Haninger / November 5, 2005 9:42 AM PST

and it sounds as if a lot of people are feeling ''duped'' these days. Some have just changed their position on who was the ''duper'' and who was the dope and distanced themselves from or denied being either. People can be strangely fickle, it seems. One day they rally in your support and the next deny you were ever a friend.

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Good Grief
by EdH / November 5, 2005 9:56 AM PST

These are quotes by the many US politicians who believed Saddam possesed WMD, some years before Bush was even elected.


Russia was claiming even after the invasion that Iraq had them. Here's one; you may Google for more.

In addition, the coalition could find mustard gas, tabun, sarin, cyclosarin and VX gas. The exact substance as well as the exact quantity is, probably, still undecided. But whatever it is, not a single sample of this weapon will be presented for an independent expertise, believes Russian chemical weapons expert and member of the UN inspection team in Iraq Kirill Scheluchenko.

Britain:In recent months, I have been increasingly alarmed by the evidence from inside Iraq that
despite sanctions, despite the damage done to his capability in the past, despite the UN
Security Council Resolutions expressly outlawing it, and despite his denials, Saddam
Hussein is continuing to develop WMD, and with them the ability to inflict real damage
upon the region, and the stability of the world.
Gathering intelligence inside Iraq is not easy. Saddam?s is one of the most secretive and
dictatorial regimes in the world. So I believe people will understand why the Agencies
cannot be specific about the sources, which have formed the judgements in this
document, and why we cannot publish everything we know. We cannot, of course,
publish the detailed raw intelligence. I and other Ministers have been briefed in detail on
the intelligence and are satisfied as to its authority. I also want to pay tribute to our
Intelligence and Security Services for the often extraordinary work that they do.


There were others as well.
http://www.aijac.org.au/review/2003/287/saddam-wmd.html And you must remember that France and Russia were in Saddm's pocket in the Oil for Food thing (revealed last week) and they were also Iraq's biggest weapons suppliers. Did you notice that Uraq was using GFrench and Russian missiles, French and Russian planes, Russian tanks and rifles and radar installations, and there were Russian advisors in Iraq up to the week of the invasion. I'm not making it up; it was reported in all the media at the time.

Now maybe there were no WMDs. Maybe they were moved before the invasion (many reporrts of trucks leaving Iraq pre-invasion. Maybe they were relocated to Syria or Iran. Maybe they never existed (except for the ones that he used against the Kurds of course) Saddam certainly tried his very hardest to goibe ve the workd theh impression that he had them, else why the eternal pussyfoting adn harassing of the UN weapons inspectors? Saddam had also been ignoring numerous UN resolutions, was killing people on a mass scale and was firing missiles at Coalition aircraft in the No Fly Zones.

Personally I thought the invasion was long overdue. Clinto should have done it during his Administratioin and he should have moved decisively against AlQaeda as well, but oh well. I for one am glad Saddam was deposed and I thtink history will bear me out. The Mideast has turned a corner for the better because of our invasion. That is becoming more apparent every month.

In any event just the links I gave are proof that the ''Bush lied'' claim is FALSE!

And your claim,the case amounts mostly to simply saying that it is the case, with no underlying support. is completely untrue.

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Ed, I was thinking about evidence, not political statements
by grandpaw7 / November 5, 2005 11:08 AM PST
In reply to: Good Grief

Evie says of her list of political statements most of which are from 1998, which you cite,
"Nobody said he had nukes. EVERYONE said he was trying to get them." None of the statements cite any evidence. They may have been based on evidence, but surely we should have evidence and not just statements before going to war.

You cite a Russian article the thesis of which was that the U.S. had no business going to war with Iraq and might well fabricate evidence of WMDs to justify doing so.

You cite a British report which predated the resurrection of U.N. inspections in November 2002. No one doubts that Tony Blair claimed there were WMDs. The report is based on public records and on secret evidence. It doesn?t say what the secret evidence was. As you know, there are also claims that Blair and Bush decided before 9/11 to invade Iraq. I?m not saying that is the case, but it is part of the mix.

The Australian article is based solely on what the Bush administration said, not on any independent evidence.

You say "The Mideast has turned a corner for the better because of our invasion. That is becoming more apparent every month." Many people have the impression that it is becoming less apparent every month.

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by EdH / November 5, 2005 12:58 PM PST
But what is the evidence that ?everyone? believed this?

The list of political statemenst is that evidence. People believed it based on whatever intelligence they got. Bush didn't make it up. Republicans didn't make it up. Everyone believed it. Were they all ''lying''?

Re: Russia.You are right about that report, but note that the US did NOT at any time try to fake evidence of WMD in Iraq. This suggests strongly that teh poewers that be EXOECTED to find them, as did we all.

Plenty of links saying that Vladimir Putin informed the President that Saddma planned terrorist attacks inside the US. And I do remember hearing well after the invasion that Russian intelligence thought there were WMD.

You can characterize the British report to suit your own needs I suppose.

I believe you are mischaracterizing the Australian article which repudiates the ''Bush/Blair lied'' thesis.

I'm sure, many people have the impression that it is becoming less apparent every month. They are very wrong in my opinion.

You ignored other parts of my post, but never mind. The key point is that your idea that the evidence that this is the case amounts mostly to simply saying that it is the case, with no underlying support.is totally and irrevocably BUSTED.
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a classic case of ''monkey see, monkey do''......
by jonah jones / November 5, 2005 7:18 PM PST

you want to refute ''EVERYONE said he was trying to get them''

but are quite happy to say in regards to this -->##The Mideast has turned a corner for the better because of our invasion. That is becoming more apparent every month## Many people have the impression that it is becoming less apparent every month


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This is the intelligence we had to go with gramps
by Evie / November 5, 2005 8:59 PM PST
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This is interesting
by TONI H / November 5, 2005 10:34 PM PST

>>>>>You cite a British report which predated the resurrection of U.N. inspections in November 2002. No one doubts that Tony Blair claimed there were WMDs. The report is based on public records and on secret evidence. It doesn?t say what the secret evidence was. As you know, there are also claims that Blair and Bush decided before 9/11 to invade Iraq. I?m not saying that is the case, but it is part of the mix.>>>>

Now, take this part of what you said "As you know, there are also claims that Blair and Bush decided before 9/11 to invade Iraq. I?m not saying that is the case, but it is part of the mix."

And tell us how YOUR statement, although you are not saying that is the case, can be taken seriously without your OWN evidence to support it, since it is also a 'rumor' without evidence to back it up and yet soooooo many people believe it, too.

You can't have your cake and eat it, too, grandpaw....you want evidence regarding other issues, please present your own evidence that Blair and Bush decided before 9-11 to invade Iraq, as I've never seen anything to support that.


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My doctor doesn't want me to eat cake anyhow, Toni
by grandpaw7 / November 6, 2005 2:16 AM PST
In reply to: This is interesting

He says it causes senility.

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Define WMD..........
by Mac McMullen / November 5, 2005 10:15 AM PST

Most of the ''we's'' out here think of WMD's as those of the CBR family. Chemical, Biological and Radiological.

Nuclear fits into the ''R's''. Saddam didn't use nuclear weapons on the Iranians or the Kurds, but he certainly did use WMD's. The UN teams certainly confirmed the existance, and the ability to quickly produce WMD's of the ''C'' and ''B'' categories. It has also been confirmed that Saddam had stockpiles of artillery munitions containing ''C and B'' elements,...thus WMD. It was also confirmed that chemical protective gear was in the hands of Iraqi troops. It was also confirmed that Saddam was developing long range missiles, capable of delivering WMD's.

Presentations that create that idea that without a nuclear weapon, WMD's didn't exist, or that the ''C and B'' weapons were of no consequence, IMO is unreasonable.

Think Anthrax. It doesn't take a missile to deliver.

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Mac, you might want to tell that to the Bush administration
by grandpaw7 / November 5, 2005 11:02 AM PST
In reply to: Define WMD..........

It says it found no WMDs. Is it lying?

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(NT) (NT) ??
by Evie / November 5, 2005 10:38 PM PST
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I love how every concerned Democrat
by dirtyrich / November 5, 2005 10:23 AM PST

feels that they should have the privelege to personally inspect any government document they choose. They might not say it, but their attitudes certainly do.
Think about all the classified and top secret documents that the press have gotten hold of. Usually, these are single or justa few documents, representing a fraction of whats going on in the world, yet the press haphazardly reports them seemingly without any concern what the release will do to the nation or whether they even display the whole picture of a situation.
This is what really gets to me, that people are so blinded by their political affiliations, greed, or ambition that they don't even bother to think what effects their actions will have.
A note to Dems - I realize that by now you probably thinky ou have a witty comeback to this post, probably soemthing saying how Republicans are the most horrid little crooks in the nation. Chill, the last paragraph goes for both parties... settle down, have a cup of tea, and move on.

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