It’s just a whisper now, but it could grow into a roar.
It seems that ever since the first soldiers crossed into Iraqi territory, the ADD-stricken press has been running stories about the fact that no significant quantities of weapons of mass destruction have been found.
At the time, I thought the stories were laughably premature. I still do, sort of, since we’ve never known exactly where the weapons are stored (if we knew that, the inspectors would have found something, dontcha think?), and since it will take time for the search effort to reach critical mass and produce results.
Still, though, today’s story concerns me. Why aren’t the Iraqi scientists talking? That they would refuse to be interviewed or provide vital details while being “minded” by Saddam’s henchmen is one thing. But why, now, with the nation free of the Baathist menace, are the scientists still denying that there was any functional WMD program in the country?
A scary, horrible thought has begun to creep into my mind: that either the Iraqis are great at hiding vast research programs and weaponry, or the country did not have a WMD program nearly as robust and theatening as the administration claimed.
If the latter is true, then the implications will be devastating, not only for the president himself, but also for the United States’ already-damaged credibility in the world.
If it is true, then the Gulf of Tonkin will have occured all over again, and Bush will have “taken the country to war on the wings of a lie,” as Tom Friedman stated.
If it is true, then dark clouds will appear over the White House, as Bush will be charged with unnecessarily sacrificing American lives, and ineptly prosecuting wars that left both Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein still at large (something that Bush’s opponents are unwilling to state due to his current popularity).
I won’t rush to judgement. Indeed, I hope we find the tons of toxins that the Security Council repeatedly agreed Iraq posessed. And I certainly still think the war was worth it anyway, as the images on television and stories in the paper assure me each day.
But something tells me they’d better find something before the scandal-obsessed press kicks into high gear. Because if they don’t, there will be hell to pay.
While I never have believed Bush about the existance of Iraq’s WMD, I can offer you some comfort. When the last Bush stormed into Iraq the people rejoiced, especially those in the South. And, when US RETREATED the area, Saddam CRUSHED these people. He made them think that he had beaten the US. He made them so scared (and dead) that they would never celebrate again, no matter how certain they were of Saddam’s death. I believe, if Iraq did have WMD, that the scientists would be too scared to talk, fearing Saddam’s wrath. I have also heard reports that Saddam destroyed what little weapons he did have days before the war. Bush’s 48 hour ulitmatem, would have given saddam plenty of time to destroy them.
If WMD are found it won’t mean the war was worthless. The war wouldn’t be a lie, only Bush would. The war was still a good thing, for the reasons Thomas Friedman said.
Friedman in 2004!
I don’t think destroying the masses of chemical weapons they were supposed to have had a few days before the start of the war would be done to the point where we wouldn’t be able to detect it.
I’ve never said that they didn’t have WMD, I’ve just said Saddam never posed a threat. One mentioned that someone thought that Saddam could never put them together while there were inspections going on, and another one said that Saddam’s weapons were more like “assembly ready”.
This will be an interesting story unfolding. Yet I’m with Aaron, the day will come some time when the press will start harping on it.
That reminds me of Vermont’s “Democrat Lite” Senator Jeffords on NPR a few weeks ago saying that even if Iraq had an atom bomb they couldn’t hurt us, because they don’t have a good enough air force or ICBM’s. When W talks about anti-missile defense, his political enemies talk about atom bombs in cars, and briefcases, and container ships; but when W talks about terrorists and bombs, his political enemies never heard of those delivery methods and deny the possibility thereof. Terrorists who could imagine how to do the things they have already done certainly have enough creativity to come up with ways to use whatever weapons they can find. We need to be equally creative in finding ways to do unto them before they do unto us. That would include doing whatever we can do to reach out to the people of the world who think they have grievances against us, trying to improve life for anyone, wherever we can, which we Americans have always been good at; however, we need to understand that promoting the good life will never be enough, there will always be Oscar the Grouch who doesn’t like anybody, and sometimes all we can do is defend ourselves by force.
It’s often times too easy to find inconsistency from a group of people. It’s better to tackle issues rather than talk about the people generally.
I think his point goes right to the issue. You just said that even if Saddam has WMD, you don’t believe he’s a threat. Yet when it comes to issues like a missile shield, I do recall you stating that we could be attacked with nukes in plenty of other ways.
There’s definitely an inconsistency there.