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Posts Tagged ‘Saddam Hussein’

William Blum, Foreign Policy Journal, August 5, 2010

If and when the United States and Israel bomb Iran (marking the sixth country so blessed by Barack Obama) and this sad old world has a new daily horror show to look at on their TV sets, and we then discover that Iran was not actually building nuclear weapons after all, the American mainstream media and the benighted American mind will ask: “Why didn’t they tell us that? Did they want us to bomb them?”

The same questions were asked about Iraq following the discovery that Saddam Hussein didn’t in fact have any weapons of mass destruction. However, in actuality, before the US invasion Iraqi officials had stated clearly on repeated occasions that they had no such weapons. I’m reminded of this by the recent news report about Hans Blix, former chief United Nations weapons inspector, who led a doomed hunt for WMD in Iraq. Last week he told the British inquiry into the March 2003 invasion that those who were “100 percent certain there were weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq turned out to have “less than zero percent knowledge” of where the purported hidden caches might be. He testified that he had warned British Prime Minister Tony Blair in a February 2003 meeting — as well as US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in separate talks — that Hussein might have no weapons of mass destruction.[1]

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PM Blair seems to have deployed arguments as they suited him. Our weapons inspections were telling another story

Before the Iraq war was launched in March 2003 the world was given the impression by the US and Britain that the goal was to eradicate weapons of mass destruction. Recent comments by Tony Blair suggest, however, that regime change was the essential aim. He would have thought it right to remove Saddam Hussein even if he had known that there were no WMD, he said, but he would obviously have had to “deploy” different arguments. Must we not conclude that the WMD arguments were “deployed” mainly as the best way of selling the war? Blair’s comments do not exclude a strong – but mistaken – belief in the existence of WMD even when the invasion was launched. However, given that hundreds of inspections had found no WMD and important evidence had fallen apart, such a belief would have been based on a lack of critical thinking.

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UK Daily Mail | Friday, March 13, 2009

Revealed: Blair's aides were told that Iraq was not able to attack within 45 minutes

Revealed: Blair's aides were told that Iraq was not able to attack within 45 minutes

Secret emails suggesting that Britain was duped into war in Iraq were released yesterday, renewing calls for a full-scale public inquiry into the conflict.

Documents released under freedom of information laws show Government officials pressed intelligence chiefs to strip out caveats about Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction.

Agents complained that the Government’s infamous dossier making the case for war suggested Saddam’s biological warfare programme was more advanced than they believed to be the case.

They also privately mocked claims about Iraq’s nuclear programme, joking that atomic specialists the document suggested had been assembled in Iraq must be ‘Dr Frankenstein’.

The 2002 dossier, which helped convince many MPs of the case for war, contained the now-discredited claim that Saddam Hussein had chemical and biological weapons which could be deployed within 45 minutes.

An inquiry headed by Lord Hutton, widely seen as a whitewash, concluded that spy chief Sir John Scarlett, who compiled the document, could have been ’subconsciously influenced’ by political pressure while drawing up the report.

Yesterday’s documents showed Sir John was directly instructed to make the conclusions as firm as possible.

Full article here

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