Skip to comments.Journalist claims proof of WMD lies (Report Aired in UK)
Posted on 09/22/2003 9:15:51 PM PDT by Mark Felton
AUSTRALIAN investigative journalist John Pilger says he has evidence the war against Iraq was based on a lie that could cost George W. Bush and Tony Blair their jobs and bring Prime Minister John Howard down with them.
A television report by Pilger aired on British screens overnight said US Secretary of State Colin Powell and National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice confirmed in early 2001 that Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein had been disarmed and was no threat.
But after the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington on September 11 that year, Pilger claimed Rice said the US "must move to take advantage of these new opportunities" to attack Iraq and claim control of its oil.
Pilger uncovered video footage of Powell in Cairo on February 24, 2001 saying, "He (Saddam Hussein) has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbours."
Two months later, Rice reportedly said, "We are able to keep his arms from him. His military forces have not been rebuilt."
Powell boasted this was because America's policy of containment and its sanctions had effectively disarmed Saddam.
Pilger claims this confirms that the decision of US President George W Bush - with the full support of British Prime Minister Blair and Howard - to wage war on Saddam because he had weapons of mass destruction was a huge deception.
Pilger interviewed several leading US government figures in Washington but said he did not ask Powell or Rice to respond to his claims.
"I think it's very serious for Howard. Howard has followed the Americans and to a lesser degree Blair almost word for word," Pilger told AAP before his program was screened on ITV tonight.
"All Howard does is say `well it's not true' and never explains himself.
"I just don't believe you can be seen to be party to such a big lie, such a big deception and endure that politically.
"It simply can't be shrugged off and that's Howard's response.
"Blair has shrugged it off but Blair is deeply damaged. It's far from over here, there's a lot that is going to happen and much of it could wash onto Howard.
"And it's unravelling in America and Bush could lose the election next year.
"I've not seen political leaders survive when they've been complicit in such an open deception for so long."
Howard last week dismissed an accusation from Opposition Leader Simon Crean that he hid a warning from British intelligence that war against Iraq would heighten the terrorist threat to Australia.
In his report, Pilger interviews Ray McGovern, a former senior CIA officer and friend of Bush's father and ex-president, George Bush senior.
McGovern told Pilger that going to war because of weapons of mass destruction "was 95 per cent charade."
Pilger also claims that six hours after the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Centre, US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said he wanted to "hit" Iraq and allegedly said "Go Massive ... Sweep it all up. Things related and not."
He was allegedly talked down by Powell who said the American people would not accept an attack on Iraq without any evidence, so they opted to invade Afghanistan where Osama bin Laden had bases.
Pilger claimed war was set in train on September 17, 2001 when Bush signed a paper directing the Pentagon to explore the military options for an attack on Iraq.
Bad choice on our part and the American and Iraqi people suffered for it. I understand why GHWB thought he had to do it and his son has learned from his mistakes. It's true, our United States is not perfect but at least we try hard. Which is more than I can say for certain other countries.
and why should we tollerate that kind of defiance after 9/11?
We shouldn't have tolerated after it after 1997.
Don't laugh too loud when you read this and wake up everyone in the house. :-)
President Clinton responded to the Iraqi presidents decision by pledging to deal in a very determined way with Saddams expulsion of American weapons inspectors Thursday. But for the time being, the United States pursued a diplomatic solution rather than a military strike.
Here's some good stuff:
Rubner said that considerable evidence has been found over the last six years that Saddam violated every U.N. resolution passed in the wake of the Persian Gulf War.
But Harland Renshaw, a pre-vet sophomore, said he would support Clinton if he decided to use military force against Iraq because its important that the country cant build weapons of mass destruction.
Something should be done, he said. I wouldnt want them to have nuclear weapons around. If they dont want us there to do inspections, then theyve obviously got something to hide.
Richard Butler, the head of the U.N. team, admitted Thursday that pulling all inspectors out would severely hamper the U.N.s ability to ensure that Iraq is not building weapons of mass destruction.
All kinds of great info in that piece, including the Kenneth Bacon quote, Im not talking military action. Youre talking about military action.
I did, and it was very educational. Thanks for the tip. With a statement like this...
"Far from being the terrorists of the world, the Islamic peoples have been its victims - principally the victims of US fundamentalism, whose power, in all its forms, military, strategic and economic, is the greatest source of terrorism on earth."
...Pilger makes it eminently clear where he's coming from, and establishes his level of credibility. On September 13, 2001, I was somewhat preoccupied, like most Americans. Meanwhile, Pilger had the time to write and publish that article, 2 days after the towers fell.
The fact that I found this particular copy on a German Marxist website also speaks volumes about the man and his fellow travelers.
Now please pardon me while I go take a long shower after reading this hack's worthless garbage. But before I go wash the scum off me, let me leave you with the last two sentences from that article:
"It is only a few years ago that the Islamic fundamentalist groups, willing to blow themselves up in Israel and New York, were formed, and only after Israel and the US had rejected outright the hope of a Palestinian state, and justice for a people scarred by imperialism.
"Their distant voices of rage are now heard; the daily horrors in faraway brutalised places have at last come home."
Exactly. I can't believe these people even have the guts to pretend Bush lied about WMD to start a war.
The people making this accusations are either mentally ill or they have lost their collective memories.
Why not take yourself over to DU where tin foil is all the rage.
At this point their seats weren't even warm yet and they were totally dependent on Clintonistas for their Intel. And, fact isat that time, they (and we, both Dems and Pubbies) wanted to stay out of Iraq etc. That was pre-9/11, the day our way of seeing the world changed.
Perhaps you'd better read the rest of the thread before you draw your conclusions.
Hmmm ... a Google Search has Powell saying THIS when he was in Cairo on February 24, 2001:
SECRETARY POWELL: The message I plan to give all the leaders I speak to and to the Arab public is that the cause of this problem that we have is in Baghdad. It is Saddam Hussein who refuses to abandon his pursuit of weapons of mass destruction. The United Nations has an obligation and, as part of the United Nations, the United States has an obligation to do everything we can to cause him to come into compliance with the agreements he made at the end of the Gulf War. He threatens not the United States. He threatens this region. He threatens Arab people. He threatens the children of Egypt, the children of Saudi Arabia, the children of Kuwait with these weapons. He has used them before, so I think we all have a solemn obligation to keep him in check.
Seems rather strange that Powell would contradict himself in such a manner. Unless, of course, Pilger is lying through his teeth.
It'll further rile up the folks who already hate Bush, but it won't go any further as it is based on a rather third-rate attempt to lift comments out of context.