April 20, 2007

The Axis Of Embarrassment (Updated ... BS?)

See update below -- not very credible.

Bloggers today have been linking to an article in The Spectator, a well-regarded British magazine, written by Daily Mail columnist Melanie Philips regarding Iraqi WMDs. According to the man assigned to look for them, the WMDs were there -- before the Bush Administration apparently botched security at the sites and his classified reports went missing. Meet David Garbautz, who served as an Air Force agent in Special Investigations for 12 years before his most important assignment:

Between March and July 2003, he says, he was taken to four sites in southern Iraq — two within Nasariyah, one 20 miles south and one near Basra — which, he was told by numerous Iraqi sources, contained biological and chemical weapons, material for a nuclear programme and UN-proscribed missiles. He was, he says, in no doubt whatever that this was true.

This was, in the first place, because of the massive size of these sites and the extreme lengths to which the Iraqis had gone to conceal them. Three of them were bunkers buried 20 to 30 feet beneath the Euphrates. They had been constructed through building dams which were removed after the huge subterranean vaults had been excavated so that these were concealed beneath the river bed. The bunker walls were made of reinforced concrete five feet thick.

‘There was no doubt, with so much effort having gone into hiding these constructions, that something very important was buried there’, says Mr Gaubatz. By speaking to a wide range of Iraqis, some of whom risked their lives by talking to him and whose accounts were provided in ignorance of each other, he built up a picture of the nuclear, chemical and biological materials they said were buried underground.

‘They explained in detail why WMDs were in these areas and asked the US to remove them,’ says Mr Gaubatz. ‘Much of this material had been buried in the concrete bunkers and in the sewage pipe system. There were also missile imprints in the area and signs of chemical activity — gas masks, decontamination kits, atropine needles. The Iraqis and my team had no doubt at all that WMDs were hidden there.’

There was yet another significant piece of circumstantial corroboration. The medical records of Mr Gaubatz and his team showed that at these sites they had been exposed to high levels of radiation.

Garbautz wrote sixty classified reports about what he found in those fortified bunkers under the Euphrates. None of them can be found now. Garbautz isn't sure if the destruction of his reports were accidental, done while the Air Force evacuated a base where the digital files were stored, or deliberate in order to keep things quiet. Even a Congressional investigation hit a brick wall at the CIA, which grudgingly admitted in 2005 that Garbautz' reports had indeed disappeared. At that time, the CIA went back to the fortified sites and found them looted.

Where did the material go? Unguarded, the sies got raided by Iraqi and Syrian forces, aided by Russian intel. The weapons material got shipped to Syria, in a location Garbauzt insists is known to American intelligence forces. The ironic result of the screw-up is that a terror-supporting nation has its hands on WMD, and could easily pass it to its radical-Islamist terror proxies, Hamas or Hezbollah.

And that is precisely why the Bush administration has not publicly made the case for WMD. In order to use this information, the Pentagon would have to admit that it fouled up so badly that it created the opportunity for terrorists to use Saddam's WMD. Democrats, who normally would have a field day pointing out the incompetence of the executive branch, can't use it because it would prove that George Bush was right about the WMD. Apparently, no one wants to acknowledge Garbautz's information about the existence and status of the WMD.

As Melanie Phillips says, it has proven to be the Axis of Embarrassment for both political parties. In the meantime, the truth has been hidden about the danger of Assad's grip on Saddam's weapons -- and, of course, his military partnership with Iran. Read the entire article.

UPDATE: Or, it could just be BS, as many CQ commenters have decided. Here's Gaubatz' website, which doesn't mention this story. His blog at Sanework -- Society of Americans for National Existence -- features posts by Gaubatz that asserts a link between radical Islam and the Virginia Tech shootings, and a long post about how nuclear weapons could be transported ... through the sewer systems.

OK. Melanie Phillips found him credible, as apparently did Rep. Peter King and Eli Lake at the New York Sun. Maybe all of this is true. If so, Gaubatz is an odd messenger. Color me very skeptical -- and a little embarrassed that I wasn't more skeptical at first. Mea culpa, and my apologies.

UPDATE II: Or is this Melanie Philips' stretching of Gaubatz' reasonable story? That's the conclusion at The Pink Flamingo. She's not impressed by the inclusion of John Loftus, either.


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Comments (38)

Posted by Monkei [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 6:03 PM

I have issues with GWB as much as anyone else does in this country, but if the Pentagon came forward and told us that this story was true I would at least, in the very least, have some reason to support GWB and this war. Right now all we are left with is a bundling President, a incompetent Pentagon and an ongoing war with no end in site all based and all based on a pack of lies.

I think they would be in better shape if they made the case and SOMEHOW PROVED it ... let's face it their intel and credibility leading up tto he war does not leave us with much faith that this administration can tell the truth.

I think it would help them with a lot of voters somewhere in the middle who have left this war and president far behind.

Keeping it underwraps is once again another WH blunder.

Posted by Glenmore [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 6:17 PM

My BS meter is pegged as I read this story. The situation as described would have been too big, known about by too many people both inside Iraq and around the world for this one guy to be the only information source. Think how easily secrets are leaked that are known to far fewer people.

Posted by Carol_Herman [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 6:29 PM

Just to make a comparison, Lincoln, throughout the tough years of the Civil War did not shed any popularity. (Though, sure. You could argue that the congress-critters who got bounced out of their seats in 1862, resented Lincoln, a lot. And, they were Repubicans. Replaced by democrats. That's just the way people vote.)

Bush, here, has not convinced anyone that Saddam was preparing an atomic bomb, which he would then "throw" at us. It's a lousy argument. And, from the start, those 16-words, for Bush have been problematic.

Add to this, that just as the Israelis discovered when they went into Lebanon, in 1982. THEY WOULD NOT MAKE FRIENDS AMONG THE ARABS!

Now? It's our turn. Americans are disgusted with arabs. Bush still plays with the House of Saud, though.

And, if I had to guess? It's his "dream" to force Jews off the land, so a terrorist entity can be created; where the terrorists live on the hills, overlooking Israel ... is part of the reason why things came to a screeching halt.

Bush is an arrogant fool.

Well? So was Jimmy Carter.

Nixon? Had no idea that being elected president made him popular. It was more important to him to "have an enemies list." Nixon didn't do all that wel.

And, Rodino, the House member from New Jersey, and elected republican, was the man who turned. And, the House was IMPEACHING Nixon. Yes, they did.

You could argue that Clinton didn't cave. But it doesn't matter.

There are now independent voters out there, probably in the majority. Meaning the independents have more voters than either party can collect. And, here's where Bush has the greatest short fall.

SHould it matter? He's not running again?

Yes. Politics is HARDBALL!

And, public opinion shifts.

In my car, I'm listening to Tom DeLay's new book. On CD's. His voice, too. Not read by somebody else.

And, he talks about himself, a lot. How he ended up becoming a republican, as a matter of fact. Back in 1964.

What he does next is very interesting. He reads Barry Goldwater's speech to the GOP Convention, when he was nominated.

Back then? I laughed at "Extremism is the defense of liberty is no vice."

Heck, LBJ did a commercial of a little girl, picking the pedals off daisies. And, at the end, there's a mushroom shaped cloud.

Barry Goldwater, if you listened to his speech now;

And, like I said Tom DeLay repeats it. Knowing what we know. He built the conservative movement THEN.

Bush? A faker.

Parts of the GOP problems comes from the pork swilled by GOP kiesters, once they get elected.

And, Bush? Sorry. His messages that islam is the "religion of peace" is phony.

His desire to force Israelis off their lands? Well, it's no wonder to me that he's running into problems. You thought it would be lightening strikes and hail storms, from the Man Upstairs? WHY?

Hope the whole boondoggle ends up on the rocks.

And, Saddam's swung. From now on, out, it's up to the Iraqis to choose what they want. And, how they want to get there.

Seems there's a lot of "choosing" going in in Lebanon, too. But I don't care.

Bush, it seems, tried to put something over. And, his plans went awry.

Just like with Gonzales. Cute. He's not backing down. Well, Libby's still heading towards jail. And, Bush is an idiot. If what he's choosing to do with Gonzales is his "best shot" ... he's one spoiled ignoramus.

Worried? Well, politics is HARDBALL.

And, you bet. As the Saud's Realtor, he's being run off the property he wants to give away; because something bad is chasing his ass.

Realtors like that usually get laughed out of the neighborhood.

After 911, we got to learn that the HOUSE OF SAUD, and the Eypgtians, were the terror masters.

No one as yet has made one single decent speech on this subject.

I think Guiliani holds some cards. Do you know why? He kicked arafat's ass out of Carnegie Hall.

Arafat came in and sat down. Guiliani was sitting in one of the front rows. He turned his head. And, he saw the pedophile coming in with UN honchos.

Guess what Guiliani did? He hopped up on the stage. Grabbed a microphone. And, pointed. He said to arafat GET OUT. He said to the UN honchos, NO TICKET FOR HIM!

And, no show, either. Until arafat picked himself up out of his chair. And, left the auditorium.

Bush has not had one single day where he has said anything to any terrorist!

Oh. And, he told Maliki that the map of Iraq was not in his hands. Bush is too stupid to understand this simple truth. But the Iraqis aren't listening to Bush's "dreams" of states and pieces, either.

What a terrible cost.

You can't even blame anybody else. You want to complain that the media drums are beating? Why? Dan Rather didn't do this! Bush did this to himself. Because he's an arrogant bastard. Worse than Jimmy Carter. At least when things went bad on Carter's watch; we weren't pouring military men and money, to waste on the ground.

You want to fight terror? Hang King Abullah. Or go after him, and his entourage with tanks. Much more evil in the House of Saud.

ANd, no. Islam, as practiced by the Wahabi-beasts, is not a religion of peace. Don't give me that "diversity crap." It's all hooey. This is the GOP's agenda? REALLY?

Bush is the Evil Knevil of presidents, not able to make the ramp. He doesn't even wear a helmet. Like Corzine doesn't wear a seatbelt.

Bush also broke America's pity button.

Posted by JEM [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 6:29 PM

I agree this one needs to be treated skeptically.

Were it true, it would reinforce my personal belief that our biggest mistake to date was not buckling down and scraping together a Desert Storm-sized force to take Iraq.

Posted by PersonFromPorlock [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 6:39 PM

My BS meter pegged, too. For one thing, the "Air Force Office of Special Investigations" sounds a lot grander than it is; AFOSI mostly does things like security background checks or investigating pilferage on Air Force bases. An 'OSI agent' does pretty much the same work as a police detective in a small department. What he doesn't do is collect primary intelligence information.

Well, I could be wrong. My Air Force days are long gone and maybe, in the press of events, AFOSI agents were sent out to investigate suspect sites. But this feels like it has about as much substance as Plamegate.

Posted by Jim [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 7:01 PM

Sorry, I'm not buying it. I guess it could be true, but it sure sounds like BS to me.

As far as the WMD issue, there were many other reasons for going to war with Iraq besides WMD's. Everyone knows this, but the dishonest Dems won't admit it because they have grown fond of beating GWB over the head with the issue. I'm sure you've all heard "Bush lied, people died" add nauseum.

The Republicans -- for whatever reason -- have no interest in persuing the other reasons for war reasons either. This will be to their everlasting shame.

Jim C

Posted by Uncle Jefe [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 7:01 PM

Right now all we are left with is a bundling President,
Posted by Monkei at April 20, 2007 06:03 PM

Well, if the monkeitroll says so, that's good enough for me.
No one wants to be led around by a bundling President.
Then again, you sure don't mind being led around by quisling senators and members of congress...

Posted by The Mechanical Eye [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 7:02 PM

Good gravy, why now? If this guy is so credible, why didn't he drop this when the WMD controversy was alive and in the headlines?

And the above commenters are right- this is simply too big for no one else to mention. Too many people had to have been silent for too long for this to have been kept under wrap.

Has nothing in this pre-emptive war gone right?


Posted by RBMN [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 7:29 PM

Sounds like a little free book publicity to me, New York Times style.

Posted by Del Dolemonte [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 7:29 PM

Monkei said:

"Right now all we are left with is a bundling President, a incompetent Pentagon and an ongoing war with no end in site all based and all based on a pack of lies."

LOL, you mean the same "lies" about Iraq and WMDs that Bill Clinton, Al Gore, and John Kerry were all claiming were "facts" in 1998? By cracky, if my President tells me Iraq has WMD's, he must be right. Doesn't matter what party he belongs to. Your problem is that "Bush's lies" about Iraq had already been stated by all of the above in the last century.

And don't forget, Clinton's own Justice Department, in their 1998 indictment of Osama bin Laden, specifically cited his relationship with Iraq, and a Clinton-appointed Federal Judge in New York City in 2003 also ruled that Iraq was involved in the 9/11 attacks. Since they're all Clinton people, they must be right!

By the way, what is Bush "bundling"?

Posted by Lew Clark [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 7:45 PM

This is pretty easy to verify. If the WMD's are in Syria, get Nancy Pelosi to ask Bashar Assad. She and Bashar are bestest buddies. And this is the kind of thing you don't keep from your bestest buddy.

Posted by Brooklyn [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 8:38 PM

my goodness Captain...

now you have gone and accepted this story, and framed it in the most unattractive light for the Bush Administration.

it is absurd.

there is little proof as of yet, besides an article, but no proof the Bush Administration bungled the job.

you might as well go to a doctor, for i feel you may actually have BDS.

you are jumping...

really, slow down...

what happened to the objective Captain of many years?

Posted by DaveR [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 8:41 PM

Thanks, Nancy!

Posted by JeanneB [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 8:45 PM

Big grain of salt here, too.

...the massive size of these sites... Three of them were bunkers buried 20 to 30 feet beneath the Euphrates. They had been constructed through building dams which were removed after the huge subterranean vaults had been excavated so that these were concealed beneath the river bed. The bunker walls were made of reinforced concrete five feet thick..

Soooo, we're to believe---with thousands of troops in country, constant air cover, 24-hr satellite monitoring, etc.---that these "massive" sites were excavated and their contents loaded onto caravans of Russian trucks headed to Syria? All with no one noticing!

This is ridiculous.

Posted by ck [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 8:50 PM

I'm not sure what type of WMD these were, but I doubt it would make a case for war unless it happened to be nukes - even then, its probably not advisable to invade a country with nukes (unless there is a 100 percent assurance the nukes can be neutralized first) -

A country merely having a cache of chemical weapons or "wmd" or whatever is not grounds for an invasion. Saddam had not threatened us physically (the Iraqi army did retaliate when we flew over though), probably because he didn't want a war with us for the very reason he's dead now.

The WMD thing was always a shield. GWB basically stated that the case for WMD was that pretty much everyone just assumed Saddam still had them (probably because we gave them to him back in the 80s) - There was never a threat issue, merely a reason to invade that sounded plausible to the public - Ask the pentagon if Iraq was at the top of the threat list in 2002 - I'm pretty sure it wouldn't even be in the top 10 -

But, that's not to say there wasn't at least a somewhat valid reason to invade Iraq. Leaders (even as dumb as Dubya), don't just invade countries for giggles. There's usually some sort of national security issue at stake - and if it wasn't WMD (which it wasn't), and if it wasn't the freedom of the Iraqi people (which it wasn't), and if it wasn't just the pure need for oil (which it wasn't), then what the hell was it?

At one time I thought it was the money that the military industrial complex could make off of the war - Now I don't think that's the main reason anymore - more like a plus on the side -
I read a couple interesting pieces about the Euro - Basically Iraq converted to the Euro for oil trading in 2000. A lot of people apparently speculated that Saddam signed his own death warrant with that move. From what some economists are saying, if Iraq switched to the Euro, the value of the dollar would slowly disintegrate and we would be in big trouble economically --- That's the first plausible explanation I have come across. That's also the only explanation that I could somewhat be behind... But I would still have huge problems with our continued dependence on oil, thus furthering the danger of letting other countries dictate our economy by choosing what form of currency to use.

Anyway, Iran is apparently threatening to do the same thing, and China has switched some of their currencies just last month -

crazy -

Posted by conservative democrat [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 9:17 PM

Having trouble believing this one. If it is true Bush and Rummy were idiots for not following the advice of General Shinseki, who said we'd need 400,000 troops to secure the country. Too many sites went unguarded. Borders weren't sealed. Just a colossal cluster_uck all the way around. Bush's legacy.

Posted by Terry Gain [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 9:35 PM


Please favor us with particulars of the pack of lies you refer to. In doing so please bear in mind that saying something you believe to be true that turns out not to be true is not a lie.

I'm not saying that what Gaubatz is saying is true but I don't think we can assume he is lying. And he's been telling his story for years. It's only now being picked up. Visit his website if you don't believe me.

Perhaps those of you who are convinced he's lying might explain why Saddam acted as if he possessed WMD when he didn't. The explanation that's been offered is that feared Iran. He feared Iran more than he feared the U.S.? Really?

I agree that it's weird that this hasn't been picked up before now but everyting about the Iraq war is weird.

A party that voted for the war describes it as Bush's war when it gets tough.

Conduct that is more like fraternity hazing is described as torture.

The real torture committed daily by the enemy is all but ignored.

The Democrats run as their war hero President a man who escaped the war theatre in four short months after sustainng three superficial wounds. He then came home and launched a political career by comparing his compatriots to Ghengis Khan.

A despicable lying, America - hating, fact pig is invited to sit in the Presidential box at their convention and no one complains.

Thirty nine percent of the American public believes 9/11 was an inside job and another fat pig is cheered when she spouts this insanity on a popular tv show.

American soldiers risk their lives to help a fledgling democracy and their efforts are either villified or ignored by most of their fellow citizens.

I never thought I would see the day when the opposition party would be invested in America's defeat (at the hands of religious fanatics) and the MSM would be cheering for the fanatics.

We live in an upside down world where everything that justifies the liberation of Iraq is minimized and everything that proves it was a mistake is maximized. So keep an open mind.

Of course I remain to be convinced.

Posted by Monkei [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 9:57 PM

American soldiers risk their lives to help a fledgling democracy and their efforts are either villified or ignored by most of their fellow citizens.

Wrong again, everybody is for the troops. It's the bungling administration and the way they fought and lost the war that is weighing on MOST citizen's mind. Let's not make this out to be a Vietnam spitting and baby killer scenario. Remember it was that cut and runner Richard Nixon who brought the war to an end there, although I am sure all of you macho keyboardists would still be in Vietnam if you had your druthers.

You also need to bone up, your info is WRONG on the number of months Kerry was in Vietnam, but then again you bought the Swift Boat scenario hook line and sinker. Kerry had 2 tours of Vietnam. Please do the math. Superficial wounds ... getting shot at is something I am sure you can conveniently dismiss as "nothing". Amazing, yet this guy's service record was on trial by of all people Bush/Cheney! But Kerry's defeat is past, what we are left with is Bush.

As fas as others lying about WMDS .... ok, so be it. Everyone lied. So what is it then Del Monte, you pissed because Cinton didn't get us into the Iraq mess prior to Bush II? Or, is your argument that Bush lied as bad as the others your mention and should be dismissed as just being another liar?

Pack of lies ... wouldn't it just be easier for you to list what this administration has done right when it comes to this war? It's too easy for you to simply come up with an excuse as to how the intel was cherry picked so why try.

Posted by Terry Gain [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 10:20 PM


So it's clear that when challenged you can't come up with with proof of even one lie. Quelle surprise.

It's hardly surprising that when asked to justify your lies about Bush you tell lies about me, someone you don't know from Adam.

If you think the constant attacks on the mission aren't giving support to the enemy you are deluding yourself. It was all of two weeks from the time Kennedy called Iraq a quagmire and al Sadr was saying the same thing.

You Democrats may not pay any attention to what al Qaeda says but they listen to and act upon your words.

And I'm well aware of Kerry's tour on the Gridley- not exactly in the line of fire. So knock off the B. S.

Posted by Del Dolemonte [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 10:21 PM

Monkei said

"Pack of lies ... wouldn't it just be easier for you to list what this administration has done right when it comes to this war? It's too easy for you to simply come up with an excuse as to how the intel was cherry picked so why try. "

LOL! Well, let's see. We deposed Saddam and won the war in 3 weeks. Sure, we're still there trying to secure the peace, but that happens in every war. We're still in the war of choice Clinton started without UN approval, and we still have troops in the countries we liberated in World War 2. Try and look at the big picture.

As for other things this Administration has "done right in this war", try several Iraq elections, and then the new government trying, convicting and putting to death Saddam and his henchman. That's something to be praised, not condemned, unless your BDS is too high.

PS, please provide us with credible examples of what intelligence info was "cherry picked" by Bush. After all, the world's smartest woman (the Junior Senator from New York) believed Bush's rationale for war. Why don't you?

Posted by Terry Gain [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 10:59 PM

Done right

1. Prevented Saddam from ever developing nuclear weapons. (Anyone who thinks Saddam would not have resumed his pursuit of nuclear weapons as soon as sanctions ended should read Saddam's Bomb by McGrory and Bhattia).
2. By engaging al Qaeda in Iraq proved to al Qaeda that Mogadishu does not represent the true America.
3.Al Qaeda leadership has been decimated in Iraq.
4. As a result of their horrific tactics of trying to win the war in Iraq by killing innocent civilians al Qaeda's reputation in the Arab world is now in the toilet whereas after 9/11 it was quite high,
5 Convinced Libya to abandon pursuit of WMD.
6. Exposed A.Q. Khan nuclear network.
7. Exposed Democrats as utterly clueless on defence and national security. (Murtha and Pelosi for starters) This is a party willing to concede Iraq to al Qaeda. (Yes Monkei this is what's at stake).
7. Exposed Democrats for the short sighted and naive defeatists they are. Not wiling to support what it lakes to defeat al Qaeda in Iraq. Naively believe we won't have to fight them here if we concede Iraq to them. Believe the next election is more important than the welfare of the nation.
8. Oh yes, elections in Iraq.

Posted by WryCoder [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 11:20 PM

Gaubatz' story may sound a little weird, but here's some corroboration:

Secret bunkers held chemical weapons, says Iraqi exile

Posted by Norm [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 20, 2007 11:44 PM

Well, does anyone else recall several reports of truck convoy(s) spotted by satellite heading into Syria from Iraq, as we were in the process of moving towards Baghdad?

Posted by DubiousD [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 12:12 AM

Gaubatz has been making the rounds with his story for quite some time. If anyone's interested, here's what the New York Sun had to say about him back in February 2006.


Posted by Terry Gain [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 12:21 AM

Serendipitously Power Line has a post up on Monkei's war hero. (Monkei you don"t want me to dissect Kerry's explanation for - if you stay in school you won't end up in Itaq "joke"). You wouldn't recognize a liar if your life depended upon it.


Val McMurdie also served in Vietnam and wrote to comment:
I've read your blog post and realize your arguments are cogent for the general public to read. I was the Operations Officer and Division Operations Officer for Operation Market Time and directed Swift Boat operations, intercepts, etc. in South Vietnam beginning in November 1969.

For those veterans who served in South Vietnam, numbering approximately 1.5 million, and for at least the nine million veterans who are eligible to vote, Kerry had two instantaneous problems after the Swift Boat Veterans ad came out: 1) all of us knew it is virtually impossible to be awarded three Purple Hearts without ever spending a day in the hospital; 2) his accusations that war crimes were commonly committed by service men, or sailors, which none of us had ever heard of, let alone seen. The phony Purple Hearts killed Kerry as an honest or honorable man to probably 90 percent of veterans. Phony Purple Hearts put him among the most unethical people in the county.

As an officer, and medical officer for the North coast, since the Swift Boats had no MD, I can tell you that it would have been easy for me to ask the "Doc" corpsman to write me up for a Purple Heart for every scratch I received on any one of dozens of operations. I could have had five Purple Hearts had I wished to dishonor myself and wounded and dead sailors. I have none. I rate John Kerry among criminals, and despicable, on this point alone.

It is difficult for civilians to understand the responsibility and authority of junior naval officers serving in Operation Market Time. Any junior officer, Ensign or jg could have obtained several Purple Hearts had he wished to by simply asking the corpsman to write up any scratch in his medical record. It would have been that easy.

Without having been there, you may not realize these real world realities.
Monkei , we are still waiting for your proof that Bush told a pack of lies (to justify liberating 28 million Muslims). Have you considered a career in comedy? In the meantime try to get your brain around the words "slam dunk.".

Posted by bayam [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 1:05 AM

I'm not convinced that everyone has a good reason not to seek the truth. From my perspective, a screw-up that alllowed our enemies to acquire WMD is much worse than a mistake about the prescense of WMD.
Even if WMD was present, in no way does that justify the atrocious mismanagement of this war.

Naively believe we won't have to fight them here if we concede Iraq to them. Believe the next election is more important than the welfare of the nation

How many national security experts attest to this stupid belief? And how will the bad guys get here, by speed boat? Before the war in Iraq, al Qaeda had worldwide reach but was a very small organization. This war has taken a far, far larger number of harmless, pissed off Arabs from around the world and turned them into highly trained killing and bomb-making machines. Bush has made al Qaeda much larger than it ever could have become through its message of hatred and death.

If you believe for a second that fighting abroad makes us safer at home, look at England. It suffered terrorist attacks and, according to MI5, expects more to occur in the future. MI5 has gone so far as to concede that it expects a nuclear attack of some kind and that it's not realistically possible to prevent.

Combine that reality with the much larger number of people around the world who hate the United States and sympathize with terrorists, including individuals in nuclear nations, and you have a very big problem.

Fighting in Iraq has not made anyone safer except for Iran.

Posted by Doc Neaves [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 5:14 AM

I can't believe everyone's forgotten all the reports of trucks going into Syria, etc. But for those who want to know what was being said at the time, follow this one link


and I think you'll realize that it was all being said at the time, but that we didn't have enough troops on the ground to secure the sites as we found them. There was a list of over a thousand that WEREN'T EVEN VISITED ONCE in the two years after war before the article was written. Not classified, and written by the guy who found them, most likely this guy or one of his cohorts.

And AFOSI is special investigations, and would definitely be the Air Force component of ANY investigation or search for WMD.

And why are we arguing WMD again? There were too many reasons besides WMD, as everyone and their brother has stated since the day of the invasion, why are you letting the liberal weenies tied you down to the WMD Argument? We went in to PREVENT him from getting WMD, which means we said right at the outset he DIDN'T HAVE A NUKE. Geez. You libs twist words, make strawmen, then kick those strawmen's butts. How admirable. Very brave.

Posted by JeanneB [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 6:10 AM


...does anyone else recall several reports of truck convoy(s) spotted by satellite heading into Syria from Iraq, as we were in the process of moving towards Baghdad?

The story he describes happened after that...not during active conflict .
---He says he was first shown the bunkers between March and July....Baghdad fell in April.
---He says he reported it to the ISG (formed after the "invasion" period).

I've read the story several times and it just seems like it's based on too many assumptions. His story: he discovered these bunkers full of WMD...he reported the arsenals but no one did anything...as a result the WMD were later removed.

But he never actually observed what was in those bunkers at the time of his report. He simply reported what locals told him and cited evidence of WMD. But the locals' reports and the WMD traces would be the same whether the weapons were in the bunkers at the time OR if they had been removed prior to his arrival. His evidence could just as well be taken as proof that Saddam stored WMD at those sites but had them removed BEFORE THE INVASION.

It also says he "verbally" reported the bunkers to the ISG. But later we get this: "...when they tried to access his classified intelligence reports, they were told that all 60 of them...had mysteriously gone missing. These written reports had never even been seen by the ISG". So were the missing reports about the bunkers? Both statments can be true but he never specifically says he sumitted a written report about the bunkers (wouldn't he have a copy?). And, if he submitted reports, why did he say he verbally informed the ISG? We all remember that period...a mad scramble was underway to uncover WMD. If find it highly implausible that reports of several massive weapons bunkers, well hidden beneath the river, would have been ignored.

It then says:
...we told [the ISG] that if they didn’t excavate these sites, others would.’ That, he says, is precisely what happened. He subsequently learnt from Iraqi, CIA and British intelligence that the WMD buried in the four sites were excavated by Iraqis and Syrians, with help from the Russians, and moved to Syria.

It specifically does NOT say he learnt the weapons were removed AFTER his visits. Simply that they were removed. We all heard the stories that WMD had been removed to Syria BEFORE the invasion. This story does nothing to contradict that telling.

There is NOTHING in this article which would have prevented it from being written as: Inspector discovered evidence of massive weapons bunkers---he didn't actually see them and didn't know whether there was anything in them. There was evidence of WMDs (but that evidence would be the same even in the WMDs had already been removed). Inspector later heard reports that the WMDs had been removed with the help of Russia and Syria...but the removal could have happened before the invasion. [In fact, that's exactly what was reported at the time.]

He chose to imply it happened after the invasion. He wants us to believe the Russians and Syrians secretly excavated huge bunkers, handled dangerous WMD, loaded them onto trucks and convoyed them across country....all while the country was crawling with coalition forces looking for WMD and the skies were filled with aircraft watching for any activity that could pose a threat to those forces.

This is spin.

Posted by Bitter Pill [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 6:43 AM

"military industrial complex "

LOL. Whenever you see this, you just know you're dealing with a burned-out reject from the 60's.

"Fighting in Iraq has not made anyone safer except for Iran."

Except for the thousands of Iraqis he would have gassed, tortured, raped, mutilated, killed.

Except for Israel who has one less insane anti-semite to worry about.

Except for the US, where there hasn't been a terrorist attack since the war.

Statements like that illustrate the utter stupidity of the left.

Posted by patrick neid [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 8:23 AM

whether this story is accurate is irrelevant. as doc says there were a number of reasons we went into iraq. the wmd's became the "story" when none were found at the previously listed sites in the first few weeks. the anti war crowd led by "not in my name" etc quickly jumped on the issue and the rest is history.

today, if we found said wmd's nothing would change except the talking points. focus would now be on the sectarian violence etc with our having no hope of winning. as with all anti war sentiments the point of reference will keep changing until the war ends. when it finally does no remorse will be shown for the possible millions dead after pulling out--such as the aftermath of viet nam. the key at all costs is to lose, by whatever means. losing confirms the original viewpoint that the war should never have been fought. using today's war--the dems in this case have their entire credibility tied up in our losing. if iraq succeeds all is lost politically. i'll make a prediction--if iraq starts to show more progress during this surge the shrieking from the dems will get even louder.

after the victory the lament will have been it wasn't worth the cost. the methods used were wrong. dipolmacy should have been used etc etc etc.

Posted by DavidF [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 9:15 AM

And how will the bad guys get here, by speed boat?

How did the 9/11 hijackers get in? How did those that bombed the WTC the first time (the truck in the basement parking lot) get in?

That question seems to indicate that you are either incapable of thinking critically about problems, or believe we are. And since the second would also be indicative of the first, that pretty much answers that question, doesn't it?

Posted by Terry Gain [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 10:25 AM

And how will the bad guys get here, by speed boat?

"bad guys"?

What's the matter? Is the word terrorist too strong for your pacifist mind? Bad guys are those who would rather attack those fighting the terrorists rather than the terrorists.

Posted by Nick [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 11:38 AM

after the victory the lament will have been it wasn't worth the cost. the methods used were wrong. dipolmacy should have been used etc etc etc.

Bwaha 'victory'??! Are you warbloggers serious? Yeah victory is around the corner. You just didn't get around to victory these past few years when the Repubs enjoyed unlimited funding and support from Congress.

Hate to break it to you but in Iraq you had your chance. You're getting spanked like a Catholic schoolgirl on prom night.

Just keep ranting from your safe living room about bizzaro conspiracy theories... while a steady stream of reality pours in from Iraq.

Soon it will all be over for you and you'll be able to whine about how the liberals cost you your imminent victory...

Posted by Bitter Pill [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 11:50 AM

Say Nick,
Give us your perspective on how we should have done things post 9/11.

And while you're at it, try to explain the success of this war such as free elections in Iraq, no terrorist attacks in the US, no more worries about Saddam creating a nuclear program, stabilizing the oil supply in the middle east, etc. etc.

You're a twit with nothing to offer. Typical libtard.

Posted by CJ [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 2:31 PM

A senior Syrian journalist reports Iraq’s WMD located in three Syrian sites

Posted by CJ [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 4:41 PM

UN inspectors: Saddam shipped out WMD before war and after

Posted by Doc Neaves [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 21, 2007 5:23 PM

WMD...Willfully-ignorant Naysaying Democrats. Found. Case closed.

Posted by rhodeymark [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 22, 2007 9:58 AM

whether this story is accurate is irrelevant
I couldn't disagree more strongly. There is a statement in Phillips' story that satellites detect centrifuge operation in Syria. If that is impossible, then the man's credibility is shot. If it is true, then nothing about the story is irrelevant. Also - Captain, which SANE post exactly linked the VT shooter with radical Islam? I found one that focused on law enforcement mindset that mentioned both - but not the way you characterized it.