UH-OH… does this shoot holes in the Dems’ battle cry that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq? I just wanted to share this… I decided to copy the entire piece rather than select parts and send you running off to get the whole story. This is one of the few pieces that came out from Wikileaks that I actually was glad to have released. The interesting part is that it puts the Dem and Lib supporters of Wikileaks in a conundrum. Do they support everything that came out of Wikileaks to be truth as they have or do they suddenly run for the hills screaming that this is a lie? On to the article… you can find it at Weekly Blitz…
WikiLeaks docs prove Saddam had WMD, threats remain
by Seth Mandel
October 28, 2010
WikiLeaks’ latest publication of Iraq war documents contains a lot of information that most reasonable people would prefer remained unknown, such as the names of Iraqi informants who will now be hunted for helping the U.S.
And although the anti-war left welcomed the release of the documents, they would probably cringe at one of the most significant finds of this latest crop of reports: Iraq had weapons of mass destruction (WMD).
“By late 2003, even the Bush White House’s staunchest defenders were starting to give up on the idea that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq,” Wired magazine’s Danger Room reports. “But WikiLeaks’ newly-released Iraq war documents reveal that for years afterward, U.S. troops continued to find chemical weapons labs, encounter insurgent specialists in toxins and uncover weapons of mass destruction.”
That is, there definitively were weapons of mass destruction and elements of a WMD program in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq when U.S.-led coalition troops entered the country to depose Hussein.
Predictably, the liberal media did their best to either ignore the story–like the New York Times and Washington Post did–or spin it. It’s not an easy choice to make, since ignoring the story makes you look out of the loop and hurts your reputation as an informative publication, yet spinning the story means actively attempting to confuse and mislead your readers. CBS News chose the latter.
“WikiLeaks Iraq War Logs: No Evidence of Massive WMD Caches” read the headline on CBS News’ online. Here is the story’s opening paragraph:
“The nearly 400,000 Iraq war log documents released by WikiLeaks on Friday were full of evidence of abuses, civilian deaths and the chaos of war, but clear evidence of weapons of mass destruction–the Bush administration’s justification for invading Iraq–appears to be missing.”
There are two falsehoods in that sentence, demonstrating the difficulty in trying to spin a clear fact. The Bush administration’s justification for invading Iraq was much broader than WMD–in fact, it was similar to the litany of reasons the Clinton administration signed the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998, which specifically called for regime change in Iraq as the official policy of the United States government (Iraq had repeatedly violated international law, Iraq had failed to comply with the obligations that ended the Gulf War, Iraq had circumvented U.N. resolutions, etc.).
“If we fail to respond today, Saddam and all those who would follow in his footsteps will be emboldened tomorrow,” President Clinton said in February 1998. “Some day, some way, I guarantee you, he’ll use the arsenal.”
The second falsehood was the phrase “appears to be missing.” In August 2004, American soldiers seized a toxic “blister agent,” a chemical weapon used since the First World War, Wired reported. In Anbar province, they discovered a chemical lab and a “chemical cache.” Three years later, U.S. military found buried WMD, and even as recent as 2008 found chemical munitions.
This isn’t the first time Iraq war documents shattered a media myth about Saddam’s regime. In 2008, a Pentagon study of Iraqi documents, as well as audio and video recordings, revealed connections between Saddam’s regime and al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups. Called the Iraqi Perspectives Project (IPP), the report–based on more than 600,000 captured original documents and thousands of hours of audio and video recordings–proved conclusively that Saddam had worked with terrorist organizations that were plotting attacks on American targets around the world.
One way to identify a media narrative in deep trouble is the naked attempt to draw conclusions for the reader instead of just presenting the story. The CBS report on the leaked WMD documents is a case in point of the reporter telling the reader what they ought to think, knowing full well that otherwise the facts of the case would likely lead the reader to the opposite conclusion.
“At this point,” CBS reporter Dan Farber desperately pleads, “history will still record that the Bush administration went into Iraq under an erroneous threat assessment that Saddam Hussein was manufacturing and hoarding weapons of mass destruction.”
That’s as close as the liberal mainstream media will get to admitting they were wrong. It’s their version of a confession. The myth that Saddam Hussein’s Iraq was WMD-free has met its demise.
And these weapons couldn’t simply be the lost scraps of Saddam’s attempts to destroy the stockpile, as Ed Morrissey points out.
“Had Saddam Hussein wanted those weapons destroyed, no lower-ranking military officer would have dared defy him by keeping them hidden,” he writes. “It would have taken dozens of officers to conspire to move and hide those weapons, as well as a like number of enlisted men, any and all of whom could have been a spy for the Hussein clique.”
But now that we’ve answered the question of whether there were actual weapons of mass destruction in Iraq–there were and are–we may have a more significant question to answer: Who has possession of these weapons now?
“But the more salient issue may be how insurgents and Islamic extremists (possibly with the help of Iran) attempted to use these lethal and exotic arms,” Wired reports. In 2006, for example, “neuroparalytic” chemical weapons were brought in from Iran.
“That same month, then ‘chemical weapons specialists’ were apprehended in Balad,” the Wired report continues. “These ‘foreigners’ were there specifically ‘to support the chemical weapons operations.’ The following month, an intelligence report refers to a ‘chemical weapons expert’ that ‘provided assistance with the gas weapons.’ What happened to that specialist, the WikiLeaked document doesn’t say.”