Skip to comments.Kay Says Iraq Likely Had No Banned Arms, says intelligence community owe Bush apology.
Posted on 01/25/2004 2:12:15 PM PST by Pikamax
Kay Says Iraq Likely Had No Banned Arms
Sunday January 25, 2004 5:01 PM
By KATHERINE PFLEGER
Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - The former top U.S. weapons inspector in Iraq said Sunday he believes Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction before the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. David Kay said the challenge for the United States now is to figure out why intelligence indicated that the Iraqi president did have them.
``We led this search to find the truth, not to find the weapons. The fact that we found so far the weapons do not exist, we've got to deal with that difference and understand why,'' Kay said Sunday on the National Public Radio program ``Weekend Edition.''
Asked whether he feels President Bush owes the American people an apology for starting the war on the basis of apparently flawed intelligence, Kay said: ``I actually think the intelligence community owes the president rather than the president owing the American people.
``You have to remember that this view of Iraq was held during the Clinton administration and didn't change in the Bush administration. It is not a political `got you' issue. It is a serious issue of how you could come to the conclusion that is not matched by the future.''
``It's not a political issue. Its an issue of the capabilities of one's intelligence service to collect valid, truthful information.''
Since Kay's resignation Friday as the top U.S. weapons investigator in Iraq, Kay has said Iraq had no large-scale weapons production program during the 1990s, after it lost the 1991 Persian Gulf War, and no large numbers of mass destruction weapons were available for ``imminent action.''
Still, ``that is not the same thing as saying it was not a serious, imminent threat,'' he said Sunday. ``That is a political judgment,'' he said, ``not a technical judgment.''
Kay's declaration that weapons of mass destruction did not exist before the war puts him in direct contradiction with the official Bush administration position. On Saturday, President Bush's spokesman said the administration stood by its assertions that Iraq had banned weapons when U.S. and British forces invaded last March. The spokesman, Scott McClellan, said it was only a matter of time before inspectors find them.
Secretary of State Colin Powell, in contrast, held out the possibility Saturday that prewar Iraq may not have possessed such weapons. ``The answer to that question is, we don't know yet,'' Powell told reporters on a trip to Georgia. He said U.S. officials had believed Saddam had weapons prewar but had unanswered questions: ``What was it?'' he asked. ``One hundred tons, 500 tons or zero tons? Was it so many liters of anthrax, 10 times that amount or nothing?''
Kay said he believes the American public and politicians now have to grapple with the question of whether the Iraqi dictator posed an imminent threat. Given the reality on the ground, as opposed to estimates, some may reach different conclusions than they did before the war, he said.
``I must say I actually think Iraq - what we learned during the inspections - made Iraq a more dangerous place potentially than in fact we thought it was even before the war,'' Kay added.
Kay came home from Iraq in December and never returned to Baghdad to continue inspections as head of the Iraq Survey Group, sent by the CIA to track down Saddam's weapons of mass destruction.
CIA Director George Tenet replaced him Friday with Charles Duelfer, the No. 2 weapons inspector for the United Nations for about seven years.
Kay said he left the position because resources were being shifted from the search for Iraq's weapons stockpiles to counterterrorism and troop protection in Iraq.
Duelfer said Friday he has been assured he will have the appropriate resources.
Kay said he now is going to turn his attention to weapons proliferation issues and the recent lessons learned.
In addition to Iraq, he pointed out, the United States has been surprised this year by nuclear programs in Libya and Iran.
``The Iranian program was not found either by the international inspection agencies or by domestic intelligence services. It was Iranian defectors, Iranian opposition groups outside of Iran that brought it to the world's attention,'' Kay told NPR.
In Libya, he said, the surprise has been the connections to Pakistan and Malaysia, where he said it appears plants were producing parts.
``It is in many ways the biggest surprise of all, and it was missed,'' Kay said. ``We need to understand our capabilities and what needs to be done to make the nation better.''
(Excerpt) Read more at guardian.co.uk ...
Dontcha think that Occam's Razor points to the goods being real and being stashed out of our reach?
A view taken by marxists and Euro-socialists who genuflect at the Franco-Germanic altar but I have yet to meet a conservative who gives a crap about what France and Germany think about America protecting it's own interests as we see fit.
I do not understand why Kay is giving these interviews to the English media. He says things that can be used against Bush, then says they ought not be used against Bush, then adds eyebrow raisers like the above.
What did they learn during inspections that made Iraq potentially more dangerous than they thought before the war? Terrorist ties or what?
I don't think he's helping by putting this out in this fashion.
Iraq admitted in 1995 to possessing nearly 8,500 liters of anthrax, one production facility, 50 R-400 bombs, and five missiles with anthrax.
Yet the new report from UNMOVIC suggests that Iraq may have produced as much as 25,000 liters of anthrax (with 10,000 liters still in existence), two production facilities, and more than 5 warheads. There is no accurate information on Iraq's stockpiles of R-400 bombs.
Iraq's chemical weapons declarations in 1991 and 1992 did not admit having the capability to produce VX, but its revised declaration in 1995 showed it had VX capabilities. Iraq's production of VX since then has been the direct result of Iraqi deception during the 1991 and 1992 declarations, and Iraq still has not submitted proof that it has destroyed its VX capabilities.
Iraq initially claimed to have 1,200 R-400 bombs, but its revised estimate in 1995 added another 350 bombs. UNSCOM has never been able to verify this number. Iraq has admitted to filling 157 such bombs with biological weapons, but that number has also not been verified by inspections teams, nor has the bombs' destruction been verified.
It will be interesting to see if the Goebbels style "Big Lie" will work in the age of the internet.
I think not.
The left may be looking for a new role model.
The Goebbels model just doesn't work anymore.
"The decision to go into Iraq was based upon credible evidence."
Bush HAS shown his cards from the beginning and everything he said is true.
Quotes from his speech;
"The United Nations concluded in 1999 that Saddam Hussein had biological weapons sufficient to produce over 25,000 liters of anthrax -- enough doses to kill several million people. He hasn't accounted for that material. He's given no evidence that he has destroyed it.
"The United Nations concluded that Saddam Hussein had materials sufficient to produce more than 38,000 liters of botulinum toxin -- enough to subject millions of people to death by respiratory failure. He hadn't accounted for that material. He's given no evidence that he has destroyed it.
"Our intelligence officials estimate that Saddam Hussein had the materials to produce as much as 500 tons of sarin, mustard and VX nerve agent. In such quantities, these chemical agents could also kill untold thousands. He's not accounted for these materials. He has given no evidence that he has destroyed them."
What President Bush said was true.
And if Bush is responsible to explain why stockpiles haven't been found, so do all these people.
"One way or the other, we are determined to deny Iraq the capacity to develop weapons of mass destruction and the missiles to deliver them. That is our bottom line." President Clinton, Feb. 4, 1998
"If Saddam rejects peace and we have to use force, our purpose is clear. We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program." President Clinton, Feb. 17, 1998
"Iraq is a long way from [here], but what happens there matters a great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face." Madeline Albright, Feb 18, 1998
"He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten times since 1983." Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser, Feb, 18, 1998
"[W]e urge you, after consulting with Congress, and consistent with the U.S. Constitution and laws, to take necessary actions (including, if appropriate, air and missile strikes on suspect Iraqi sites) to respond effectively to the threat posed by Iraq's refusal to end its weapons of mass destruction programs." Letter to President Clinton, signed by Sens. Carl Levin, Tom Daschle, John Kerry, and others Oct. 9, 1998
"Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process." Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), Dec. 16, 1998
"Hussein has ... chosen to spend his money on building weapons of mass destruction and palaces for his cronies." Madeline Albright, Clinton Secretary of State, Nov. 10, 1999
"There is no doubt that ... Saddam Hussein has reinvigorated his weapons programs. Reports indicate that biological, chemical and nuclear programs continue apace and may be back to pre-Gulf War status. In addition, Saddam continues to redefine delivery systems and is doubtless using the cover of a licit missile program to develop longer-range missiles that will threaten the United States and our allies." Letter to President Bush, Signed by Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL,) and others, Dec 5, 2001
"We begin with the common belief that Saddam Hussein is a tyrant and a threat to the peace and stability of the region. He has ignored the mandated of the United Nations and is building weapons of mass destruction and the means of delivering them." Sen. Carl Levin (d, MI), Sept. 19, 2002
"We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country." Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002
"Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power." Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002
"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction." Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, MA), Sept. 27, 2002
"The last UN weapons inspectors left Iraq in October of 1998. We are confident that Saddam Hussein retains some stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and that he has since embarked on a crash course to build up his chemical and biological warfare capabilities. Intelligence reports indicate that he is seeking nuclear weapons..." Sen. Robert Byrd (D, WV), Oct. 3, 2002
"I will be voting to give the President of the United States the authority to use force-- if necessary-- to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security." Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Oct. 9, 2002
"There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons and will likely have nuclear weapons within the next five years ... We also should remember we have always underestimated the progress Saddam has made in development of weapons of mass destruction." Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D, WV), Oct 10, 2002
"He has systematically violated, over the course of the past 11 years, every significant UN resolution that has demanded that he disarm and destroy his chemical and biological weapons, and any nuclear capacity. This he has refused to do" Rep. Henry Waxman (D, CA), Oct. 10, 2002
"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al Qaeda members ... It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons." Sen. Hillary Clinton (D, NY), Oct 10, 2002
"We are in possession of what I think to be compelling evidence that Saddam Hussein has, and has had for a number of years, a developing capacity for the production and storage of weapons of mass destruction." Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL), Dec. 8, 2002
"[W]ithout question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime ... He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation ... And now he is miscalculating America's response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction ... So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real ...." Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Jan. 23. 2003
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