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Report: Explosives already gone when U.S. troops arrived

by EdH / October 25, 2004 8:32 PM PDT
http://www.cnn.com/2004/WORLD/meast/10/26/iraq.explosives/index.html

And yet John Kerry ran around all day yesterday accusing the Bush Administration of being incompetent for not guarding theh explosives properly! Wouldn't it be wise of him to wait until he has some facts before shooting his mouth off and looking like an idiot?

I wonder if he'll apologize today or just repeat the lie.
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Re: Report: Explosives already gone when U.S. troops arrived
by TONI H / October 25, 2004 8:41 PM PDT

No surprise either in that none of the media are reporting that over 400 tons of those types of weapons have already been found by the coalition and either already destroyed or are being protected/guarded by the allies. (I would feel more comfortable however if those tons were taken away literally if they can't be destroyed quickly and secured out of country.)

Since these types of weapons can be used in small amounts to blow up planes (two German planes were blown up using this material), don't they qualify as WMD?

TONI

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Details, details ...
by Evie / October 25, 2004 9:21 PM PDT

... I'm appalled at the media's collusion in trying to sabotage our country in this war. Let's just give the enemy more information why don't we. Sheesh.

Evie Happy

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Now that you mention it
by EdH / October 25, 2004 9:31 PM PDT

They can't find this stuff, but they claim it exists. They can't find WMD but they claim they don't exist.

Hmm.

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Amazing huh?
by Evie / October 25, 2004 9:59 PM PDT

But watch them spin it Sad

Evie Happy

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(NT) (NT) Yeah, that's the ticket! 'WMDs found in Iraq!' :-(
by crowsfoot / October 25, 2004 10:15 PM PDT
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Re: Report: Explosives already gone when U.S. troops arrived
by Josh K / October 25, 2004 11:07 PM PDT

No, they do not. WMD were specifically defined as chem/bio weapons.

"They were gone when we got here" sounds like an awfully convenient excuse, no?

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a quibble
by Roger NC / October 26, 2004 1:51 AM PDT
WMD were specifically defined as chem/bio weapons.


Let's not forget any radioactive, dirty bombs as well as actual warheads. Not claiming they were found or anything, just a small point.

RogerNC

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com
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Re: a quibble
by Josh K / October 26, 2004 1:54 AM PDT
In reply to: a quibble

Yes, that's right. Sorry for the omission.

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By the way
by EdH / October 26, 2004 9:16 AM PDT
In reply to: Re: a quibble

Though these were not WMDs they were on the list of materials Saddam was prohibited from possessing. But our buddies at the UN gave him a pass because he said he needed them for mining, construction, etc.

So technically, illegal weapons.

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No Josh, they weren't...
by Edward ODaniel / October 26, 2004 5:09 AM PDT

missile delivery systems were also rolled into the definition.

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Don't you believe NBC News? or is it only when they
by Kiddpeat / October 26, 2004 5:52 AM PDT

attack President Bush that they are credible? Could it be that our troops and their commanders are not as inept as Kerry/Edwards say that they are?

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Re: Report: Explosives already gone when U.S. troops arrived
by JP Bill / October 25, 2004 9:46 PM PDT

OK, so the high-grade explosives at Al Qaqaa had been under the control of IAEA inspectors because the material could be used as a component in a nuclear weapon, and IAEA and other U.N. inspectors left the country in March 2003 before the fighting began on March 19.

Baghdad fell on April 9, 2003. According to NBC, troops from the 101st Airborne arrived the next day to find that the material was already gone.


October 10, Iraq's director of planning, Mohammed Abbas, said the material disappeared sometime after Saddam's regime fell in April 2003,

Oct 15, five days after the IAEA received the letter from the Iraqi government, the agency alerted U.S. officials in Vienna, who in turn told National Security Director Condoleezza Rice. She then alerted Bush.

Would it be reasonable to assume that the coalition had no idea (didn't get a record of explosives and locations from IAEA before the invasion) of what to look for and where?

If they did, why didn't they notify someone of the disappearance?

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Re: Explosives already gone -- Excuses, excuses!

We took care to guard the oil ministry building, Ed! You ever hear of a parachute drop?

-- 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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Re: Explosives already gone -- Excuses, excuses!
by EdH / October 25, 2004 10:33 PM PDT

Hello! In order to guard something you have to know it's there.

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Re: Explosives already gone -- Excuses, excuses!
by JP Bill / October 25, 2004 11:03 PM PDT

Don't you think that part of preparing for action would include knowing your enemies strength and weapons?

They could have read the IAEA reports that were available and found the locations.

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They found the location.....it was empty
by TONI H / October 25, 2004 11:49 PM PDT

and when they entered the area the day after Baghdad fell, an NBC reporter was embedded with them and verified that the weapons weren't there.

Isn't it also a viable speculation that Saddam had from March until April to hand them off to terrorists of his regime knowing that we knew about them?

Or do you think the NBC reporter is lying for Bush?

TONI

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Re: They found the location.....it was empty
by JP Bill / October 26, 2004 4:00 AM PDT

The IAEA "knew" what explosives were at that location (how much and what type) in Jan 03.

http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/news/world/10015067.htm?1c

According to the story they didn't know they were supposed to be there. I read one story that they "checked that the seal hadn't been broken" and that was the extent of "checking".


Why didn't the coalition forces gather this info before invasion?

The site wasn't empty,

However, other US outlets, including NBC's own news website, quoted Pentagon officials who said a search of the site after the US-led invasion had revealed the explosives to be intact.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3955007.stm

Saddam could have moved the explosives, (he did bury a jet in the sand)

Someone is not telling all the truth.


Plan of action

Look suprised, act concerned, Deny, Deny, Deny

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The 'check the seals' were the UN inspectors. If the troops,
by Kiddpeat / October 26, 2004 6:00 AM PDT

and reporter, on the scene, say there was nothing there, it seems unrealistic to look to higher levels making contrary pronouncements. I conclude that 'they weren't there', and the rest is the fog of war.

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Re: Explosives already gone -- Excuses, excuses!
by EdH / October 25, 2004 11:56 PM PDT

As you can see from the article, this was a fraction of the massive amounts of munitons that were secured or destroyed. I don't think it is realistic to expect that we would have an inventory on hand of everything in every warehouse and its location and could have parachuted in troops to guard all that stuff in advance of the invasion.

I can only imagine what these critics would have been saying about the Normandy invasion in WWII which featured a vast array of mistakes, disasters, faulty intelligence, equipment failure and so forth. And of course an astronomically higher casualty rate than the Iraq operation.

Of course, had John Kerry been in charge instead of Ike the whole thing would have gone off without a hitch.

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Re: Explosives already gone -- Excuses, excuses!
by Dan McC / October 26, 2004 4:36 AM PDT

You think our conquest of Iraq is the same as the Normandy landing? Really?

Dan

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I didn't say that
by EdH / October 26, 2004 4:46 AM PDT

But certain comparisons can be made.I think my point (about news media gloom and doomers)is perfectly valid.

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(NT) (NT) By the way, why do you purposely distort what I say?
by EdH / October 26, 2004 4:54 AM PDT
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You made the comparison
by Dan McC / October 26, 2004 5:43 AM PDT

I was trying to clarify your statement.

Dan

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(NT) (NT) RRiigghhtt!! That's really convincing!
by Kiddpeat / October 26, 2004 6:02 AM PDT
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No you weren't
by EdH / October 26, 2004 9:01 AM PDT

You were trying to muddy it. It was perfectly clear to begin with and you knew exactly what you were doing.

Dishonest and underhanded! Not to mention cheap and childish!

Like some Democratic candidates I know.

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Sgt Rock is not the authority you think he is...
by Edward ODaniel / October 26, 2004 5:34 AM PDT

Dave but your remark again shows just how very little you know about the military and planning.

Despite long ago pointing out to you EXACTLY why the Oil Ministry and its records were important you continue to avoid fact and rely on others having as little knowledge as yourself--few are so handicapped Dave.

The explosives were not present period.

There is even indication that the amounts claimed are in doubt based on the January 27, 2003 report by the International Atomic Energy Agency to the U.N. Security Council. (read it here http://www.iraqwatch.org/un/iaea/iaea-updatereport-012703.html but knowing that is not likely and that even if you did you would have trouble understanding it here is a link to a short summary http://www.nationalreview.com/kerry/kerry200410251256.asp

In those declarations, Iraq stated that, between 1998 and 2002, it had transferred 32 of the 228 tonnes of HMX which had been under IAEA seal as of December 1998 to other locations.

Then we have this bit of info that is just ignored:

By late 2003, diplomats said, arms agency experts had obtained commercial satellite photos of Al Qaqaa showing that two of roughly 10 bunkers that contained HMX appeared to have been leveled by titanic blasts, apparently during the war. They presumed some of the HMX had exploded, but that is unclear.

Other HMX bunkers were untouched. Some were damaged but not devastated. I.A.E.A. experts say they assume that just before the invasion the Iraqis followed their standard practice of moving crucial explosives out of buildings, so they would not be tempting targets. If so, the experts say, the Iraqi must have broken seals from the arms agency on bunker doors and moved most of the HMX to nearby fields, where it would have been lightly camouflaged - and ripe for looting.
(that by the way is from page three of the NYT story)

Do yourself a favor and search for a common phrase regarding your opening your mouth and removing all doubt. It speaks of something you do too often these days and should avoid at all costs when you have no knowledge of subject matter.

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Re: Sgt Rock is not the authority you think he is...
by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / October 26, 2004 1:14 PM PDT

Hi, Ed.

I've already addressed some of these issues -- it's not clear if the weapons were still there when we arrived, as we didn't bother to look!

The bottom line is that if our concern were really WMDs (and the security of Iraq after the war) and not oil, we'd have paid more attention to weapons depots than to oil ministry records. The Bushies' priorities in what to seize when appear to show their true priorities in fighting this war, though I remain convinced that the #1 priority was getting the guy who tried to kill Bush41.

-- 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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One of the interviews yesterday
by TONI H / October 26, 2004 10:13 PM PDT

mentioned that the US were actually in a fire fight with renegade Iraqi's during the march to Baghdad...and those Iraqi's were fighting from within that compound. Since it would only take 40 trucks to move them all, my personal feelings on this is that the Iraqi's had already just finished moving the last of it out of that compound when our troops engaged them before they had had the opportunity to clear out themselves.

Until Kerry's side can prove that the weapons were there and that the MILITARY again can be blamed by him, he's scandalizing the military once again as he did thirty years ago with his sweeping statements that encompass all. How much more will he say to harm our military and their reputations in his lifetime and never feel the need to apologize?

TONI

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Re: One of the interviews yesterday
by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / October 27, 2004 9:41 AM PDT

Hi, Toni.

Kerry's problem isn't with the military (at least the "ordinary grunts" on the ground), it's with the lack of information and planning in the higher echelons. If you step back from your partisan bias, I think you'd agree this is another case where lack of planning and foresight for securing Iraq has destabilized things and made the world situation less safe, rather than more safe. Unless you subscribe to the "Iraq was a terrorist state" notion, the situation was more stable with those explosives in the hands of the Iraqi army than in the hads of whatever terrorists have acquired them now. Now the conclusion I draw from that is indeed partisan -- that this is one more example of abysmal planning, and that if you're smart you don't give such a poor planner an extension on his contract as planner-in-chief.

-- 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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"Frontline" on PBS last night was quite interesting ..
by Angeline Booher / October 28, 2004 6:02 AM PDT

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