Skip to comments.Document Details WMD Recovered In Iraq, Santorum Says
Posted on 06/21/2006 4:03:09 PM PDT by Para-Ord.45
(CNSNews.com) - Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) and Rep. Peter Hoekstra (R-Mich.) announced Wednesday the finding of over 500 munitions or weapons of mass destruction, specifically "sarin- and mustard-filled projectiles," in Iraq.
Reading from unclassified portions of a document developed by the U.S. intelligence community, Santorum said, "Since 2003, coalition forces have recovered approximately 500 weapons munitions which contain degraded mustard or sarin nerve agent. Despite many efforts to locate and destroy Iraq's pre-Gulf War chemical munitions, filled and unfilled pre-Gulf War chemical munitions are assessed to still exist."
According to Santorum, "That means in addition to the 500, there are filled and unfilled munitions still believed to exist within the country."
Reading from the document, Santorum added, "Pre-Gulf War Iraqi chemical weapons could be sold on the Black Market. Use of these weapons by terrorist or insurgent groups would have implications for coalition forces in Iraq. The possibility of use outside of Iraq cannot be ruled out. The most likely munitions remaining are sarin- and mustard-filled projectiles. And I underscore filled."
Santorum said the "purity of the agents inside the munitions depends on many factors, including the manufacturing process, potential additives and environmental storage conditions."
While acknowledging that the agents "degrade over time," the document said that the chemicals "remain hazardous and potentially lethal."
The media has reported that "insurgents and Iraqi groups" want to "acquire and use chemical weapons," Santorum noted.
The Pennsylvania senator called the finding "incredibly" significant.
"The idea that, as my colleagues have repeatedly said in this debate on the other side of the aisle, that there are no weapons of mass destruction is in fact false," Santorum said. "We have found over 500 weapons of mass destruction and in fact have found that there are additional chemical weapons still in the country."
As Cybercast News Service reported on Oct. 6, 2004, the CIA's chief inspector in Iraq provides details that corroborate information contained in 42 pages of Iraqi intelligence documents obtained by CNSNews.com.
The so-called Duelfer report, named for its author, Charles Duelfer, is widely recognized for declaring that no stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction have been found in Iraq. Other details of the report, however, provide a glimpse of what some Iraq experts say is Saddam's attempt to continue to wage war against the U.S. after the first Gulf War ended.
While acknowledging that the agents "degrade over time," the document said that the chemicals "remain hazardous and potentially lethal." '
Yeah... the MSM is jumping ALL over this revelation!!
NOT!! I just did a google news search and this is the ONLY article about it... and one blog entry:
Let's hope it's not just a Hail Mary political trick. Santorum is hurting in the polls, and the obvious lie he snuck into the Energy Bill which has the sole purpose of funneling federal money to nearly-bogus "alternative fuel" companies is the only reason somebody would need to vote for the other guy.
"There are no weapons of mass destruction... Bush made them up to support his anti-Hussein agenda, the evil, ignorant Southerner... The reasons for the Iraq war were totally fabricated... This is the next Vietnam... This is a Quagmire..."
The only reason? There isn't that much difference between Santorum and Casey then?
You can't expect to hear this on the Drive-bys.
and you won't.
I'm a third party guy: certainly no GOP cheerleader. But anyone who seriously believes that Casey, a democrat, is going to step up on the war on terror and illegal immigration is out of their mind. I know WHAT HE SAID, look at what they do.
This from CQ:
" I think that we have known of a handful of recovered chemical-weapons shells, but not 500. That number has more significance. An artillery company could have laid down a very effective attack on an enemy position, quickly killing or disabling them in a manner outlawed for decades. Of course, that had been the entire point of the UN Security Council resolutions -- to strip Saddam of that capability -- and he obviously retained it, and lied about it.
The next question will be why the White House did not release this information at the time of their discovery. Santorum's statement says, The information released today proves that weapons of mass destruction are, in fact, in Iraq[.] It is essential for the American people to understand that these weapons are in Iraq. I will continue to advocate for the complete declassification of this report so we can more fully understand the complete WMD picture inside Iraq. That implies that a broader analysis of WMD in Iraq exists -- and that it differs significantly from the common understanding shown thus far.
Some will claim that the release is strictly for political purposes. They may have a point, but I doubt it will have anything to do with domestic politics. If Bush wanted to use it for that, he would have done so in October 2004 and not in June 2006. This information changes the picture about our pre-war intelligence in time for the Iranian confrontation -- and I suspect that the White House wants to declassify it in order to convince European leaders that our intel actually paid off."
"The only reason you need". Sufficient but not necessary, as the math people would say.
More from CQ:
"UPDATE: Nothing on the wires yet at 5:10 pm CT, but let's think through what this discovery -- if it is new -- means. We have found a handful of such shells already in Iraq; I reported such a find here in November 2004. The shells had come from around the time of the first Gulf War and the contents had likely been rendered inert by the passage of time and exposure to air. That has a lot less significance than a find of 500 shells; that kind of stockpile could have done real damage to our troops during the invasion, and of course could also have caused a lot more trouble with civilians in the hands of terrorists, if properly deployed.
The political significance will be difficult to calculate without more information on when and where the shells were found, in what condition, and so on. However, their existence in those numbers will at least eliminate the argument that Saddam's WMD existed only in his head, a position that former Saddam henchmen have taken ever since they fell into Coalition hands."
If Tony Snow was smart he would hold a White-house press conference and trumpet this development to the whitehouse press corps. Make sure that Fox News is there and it will get out to the American people.
Sarin is extremely deadly organophosphate nerve gas that causes paralysis of all muscles including the muscles used for breathing...you die of respiratory failure within a few minutes without the antidote (IM Atropine SO4). One of these shells set off inside a basketball game, hockey game, or subway could conceiveably kill hundreds of people.
The report would indicate that they're still dangerous. Like anything Saddam made it's probably not the best Sarin, but it still would kill huge numbers of people.
Point well made, but probably in a scenario like that the numbers would be higher. For one thing, panic would kill many people too as they watched people convulsing on the ground and dying. But the good part is that these are old, not brand new, rounds. So it's not like it's really, really bad WMD.