Just thought people would like to know.
I heard that this morning on NPR, and am waiting for confirmation. I was thinking this link would provide confirmation – but it’s only reporting that NPR reported it. As of yet, this isn’t confirmed – although NY Times now has a news alert (no article) that “U.S. Soldiers in Karbala Area Find Several Large Oil Drums That May Contain Biological Weapons, Officers Said.”
Wait and see.
Precisely. It would be no great surprise to find out that Saddam lied, but let’s not jump to conclusions until it’s confirmed.
It’s on MSNBC as well.
Some of the text:
Initial tests indicate presence of blister, nerve agents
U.S. Army commanders say they have discovered more than a dozen barrels of chemicals in an agricultural facility 30 miles northeast of here that have tested positive as blister and nerve agents. If that initial analysis is backed up by further testing, it would be the first confirmed seizure by U.S. forces of Iraqi chemical weapons.
No confirmation, just elaboration
This quote is from today’s NY Times online.
I read in one of the other articles that sarin, in small quantities, has legitimate uses, but I have never heard that mustard gas does. The presence of all this stuff is pretty damning for SH’s claim that he had no WMD.
It could well be damning. But the same article mentions that it’s in an abandoned Palestinian training camp; what does that mean? Is this something that Palestinian fighters have brought in?
Is the supposed WMD in barrels, or is it in missiles? In barrels is much less damning: Hussein, IIRC, admitted that Iraq may have stores of chemical weapons left over from the Iran-Iraq war, but has denied that they were readily useable.
This may well be the smoking gun, but I think we need to wait and see. For it to be smoking gun, I think, the following conditions need to be met:
- The weapons need to be in a reasonably useable form – if they’re leftovers from previous wars that haven’t yet been destroyed, that’s not a smoking gun.
- The weapons need to be Iraq’s – if they’ve been brought in by Iraq’s allies, that’s not a smoking gun.
According to UN Security Council Resolution 687 (1991) paragraph 8, Iraq "shall unconditionally accept the destruction, removal, or rendering harmless, under international supervision, of:
(a) All chemical and biological weapons and all stocks of agents and all related subsystems and components and all research, development, support and manufacturing facilities related thereto;
(b) All ballisitic missiles with a range greater than one hundred and fifty kilometres, and related major parts and repair and production facilities;"1
So, IMHO, if these are chemical agents which have been found, this is the smoking gun. The UN resolution does not require them to be in usable form, only that Iraq cannot have them in a harmful form.
And as for Iraq using the defense of “they’re not my weapons”, I think it will hold about as much water as one of us saying “But officer, those aren’t my drugs even though you found them in my house. I’m just holding them for a friend.”
Of course, there could be UN resolutions after 687 which supersede this resolution and makes the possession ok but I haven’t found one.
1 The section about ballistic missiles was included as to complete paragraph 8.
This reminds me very little of when Hulk Hogan admitted to using steroids.
These new developments have likewise utterly ruined the image I had built up of Saddam Hussein. Totally destroyed it, I say…
A Dutch news source here says that after inspection, the weapons experts of the 101st have determined the alleged sarin to be… an agricultural detergent.
A quick scan of the BBC website didn’t reveal an English source, so I’ll scan again later.
Ah, yes, the fabled “clean bomb,” opposite of the much-feared “dirty bomb.”
Hey, they promised “unconventional.”
From the Information Minister (aka Baghdad Bob): "We will wash out the mouths of the infidels with industrial-grade soap!! They will foam at the mouth, and collapse before our mighty forces!!!
I think that there were 2 separate “finds” here. The one from a few days back that they thought was Chem. weapons that caused some soldiers to get sick – that turned out to be a pesticide. But I believe there was a separate find recently outside of Karbala.
Coldie, is that report you were talking about in reference to the earleir find, or the more recent one?
Yes, it appears, at this time, to be two separate incident reports. The first was of drums of what appears now to be pesticide, while the second specifically mentioned BM-21 missiles. BM-21s appear to be old Soviet short-range tactical weaponry (they look like “Stalin’s organs”), but if they’re packing nerve gas, they’re WMD.
Completely off topic, but I keep reading the thread title as “Satin-tipped missiles”.
Satin-tipped missiles! The luxury enchancement for smooth, friction-free missile entry!
More importantly: Are they ribbed for her pleasure?
Interesting, I kept seeing it as “Satan-tipped missiles”.
Is that the opposite of satin-tipped?
I don’t know - he’s supposed to be a smooth devil.
Ack. The news report I found was from a fast, but notoriously undetailed Dutch internet news site, www.nu.nl - kind of like the Dutch version of Ananova. It headlined last night’s news, and made no mention of the initial date of the find, leading me to believe it was related to the missile find.
Sorry for the confusion, guys.
“The streets will flow with the blood of those who haven’t showered!”