T Nation

Weapons found, Redux?

In case you didn’t read in the news:

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=564&e=1&u=/nm/20040708/ts_nm/iraq_nuclear_dc

“I can now announce that the United States Department of Defense and Department of Energy have completed a joint operation to secure and remove from Iraq radiological and nuclear materials that the ousted regime could have potentially used in a radiological dispersal device or diverted to support a nuclear weapons program,” Allawi said in a statement.

Hmm. I’d like to see some follow up, since it was being stored in a UN facility.

But it is quite damning. We knew that Saddam was negotiating with Kim Jong Il, but hard evidence of weapons-grade nuclear material, if that is what it is confirmed to be, is compelling.

I saw the AP story. I think the material would have been useful for dirty bombs, but isn’t “weapons grade” for full nuclear devices.

Still, definitely an interesting development. We’ll see if any of the major news networks picks it up. Right now, they are busy ignoring the British story concerning the “yellowcake” intelligence.

From the article for those too lazy to go click…

The Tuwaitha nuclear complex was dismantled in the early 1990s after the first Gulf War (news - web sites).
But tons of nuclear materials remained there under the seal of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the U.N. nuclear watchdog agency, until last year’s U.S.-led invasion of Iraq when it was left unguarded and looted by Iraqi civilians.

Yet another red herring. In fact, just more incompetence, you’d think maybe securing materials such as this would be a priority during the invasion…

Vroom,

The question is not the source. The question is would Saddam had these materials at his disposal to create weapons?

After all, I couldn’t care less if Kofi Annan was sitting on top the uranium himself. The presence of illicit weapon-capable material in Iraq was unacceptable. I care about one thing - could Saddam have used the material to create a weapon himself or pass it along to terror elements?

Thunder, I think it is pointless.

Collectively, we’ve argued enough whether or not he was likely to represent a real threat at the time of invasion. Nobody is claiming he was a saint or that he wouldn’t eventually end up with WMD’s if he was left alone to do so.

However, there is honest disagreement about whether or not an invasion was justified or required. There is also honest disagreement about whether or not the road to war was travelled in an appropriate manner.

I don’t think hashing over this issue will change any of that…