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October 27, 2004

Comments

It's really unbelievable.

Does Bush honestly think people will believe anything he says - even when he invents claims that Kerry criticized the troops when Kerry praised them?

Or is no one actually telling Bush what Kerry says, just giving him a list of talking points to recite?

I do believe that the famous "bulge" is probably just a tailoring problem - but when Bush comes out with stuff like this, I'd like to believe it's an alien blob sitting between his shoulderblades controlling his mind.

If he keeps up like this, I'm going to have to entertain the theory that the bulge is actually Voldemort.

"Does Bush honestly think people will believe anything he says - even when he invents claims . . ."

Yes. And he's right.

Just for the record (since we're getting down to the wire and my sense of humor, at least, is under strain): even if I did think that it was Voldemort under the shirt, I would still accept Bush as my President if he wins, just like I did last time.

"George W. Bush who talks tough and brags about making America safer has once again failed to deliver. After being warned about the danger of major stockpiles of explosives in Iraq, this administration failed to guard those stockpiles – where nearly 380 tons of highly explosive weapons were kept. Today we learned that these explosives are missing, unaccounted for and could be in the hands of terrorists."

This implies that the stockpiles were still there when we took over. As has been noted, there is considerable doubt about that--in fact I would suggest that the current weight of the evidence is well in favor of the idea that the stockpiles were NOT there when the US took over. See Belmont Club, or Michael Totten quoting of all things a CBS report.

Which is why the charges appear 'wild'.

"Make no mistake: our troops are the best-trained and best-led forces in the world, and they have been doing their job honorably and bravely. The problem is the Commander-in-Chief has not being doing his."

You say: "Nowhere in his response does John Kerry blame the troops. On the contrary, he goes out of his way to praise them. He blames President Bush and his administration."

This is a straddle. Bush was not personally involved in securing the site, that was the job of the 3rd Infantry Division and later the 101st Airborne. Contending that they were not competent to find (which they did not) or secure (which they could not because they did not find such explosives) is of course an attack on the troops. You can't just blame the Bush administration, the 3rd Infantry and the 101st were there.

Considering the number of trucks which would have been needed to transport the 377 tons, it is ridiculous to assume that the explosives could have been taken undetected while the roads were closed (which is to say right after the invasion). A more likely explanation (or at the very least equally likely explanation) is that the explosives were taken during the extended run-up to the war. Such run-up was greatly extended by the international community process which Kerry is so fond of.

Let me get this straight: Bush and you, Sebastian, are passing the buck to the troops, and in doing so are accusing Kerry of denigrating our men in uniform and straddling? Am I misunderstanding something here?

To be clear, I mean passing the buck from Bush to the troops, not that you ever had or deserved the buck, Sebastian.

Interesting that he's in Lancaster. Is his strategy for winning Pennsylvania to crank out the Amish vote?

Sebastian's making a valiant effort to keep up with Bush Talking Points.

Hey, Seb?

The latest Bush Talking Point is: "[There's] no evidence the explosives [at Al QaQaa] were ever removed"... Wwe never knew if there were explosives there at all."

Courtesy of CNN by way of Pandagon.

"Let me get this straight: Bush and you, Sebastian, are passing the buck to the troops, and in doing so are accusing Kerry of denigrating our men in uniform and straddling? Am I misunderstanding something here?"

I'm not blaming the troops because I find it very unlikely that the explosives were removed when they were in control of the site. I find it much more likely that they were removed in the run-up to the war.

Does Bush honestly think people will believe anything he says

Yes. And many of them do.

Heh. So....Kerry was a Bush supporter, or simply out of step with his supporters?

I think, Sebastian, if you look at the timeline, you'll find that the first soldiers to visit did not obtain and maintain control of the site. Because they had a whole lot of other things to do, like capture Baghdad and overthrow Saddam. No one is suggesting that either the soldiers failed to execute their orders, or that the orders didn't make sense in and of themselves.


This will all sort out in the next several days, and it's strange that the Iraqi story seems to be (a) the stuff was there when Saddam fell and (b) the US tried to suppress, during 2004, report of the missing stuff to the IAEA.

I haven't seen a credible denial of (b) from the Admin, but not being obsessed, I could well have missed it.

Sebastian: "This is a straddle. Bush was not personally involved in securing the site, that was the job of the 3rd Infantry Division and later the 101st Airborne. Contending that they were not competent to find (which they did not) or secure (which they could not because they did not find such explosives) is of course an attack on the troops. You can't just blame the Bush administration, the 3rd Infantry and the 101st were there."

Just to be clear, I do not blame the troops on the ground, since they were (as far as I know) doing their jobs as best they could. If they were (as they claim) ordered to press on to Baghdad rather than to secure the site, then it would have been wrong of them to disregard those orders. I certainly do not conclude that they were not competent to secure the site; from what some of them have said, it seems that they were not asked to do so, so their competence does not come in.

I do not blame the people who gave the orders not to secure the sites, or any of the military planners who did not have a role in setting troop levels, since as far as I know they were doing the best job they could within the parameters they were given, including the numbers of troops they had available. Given more information than I have, I might blame some of the people who set priorities and decided that this was not a "medium priority" site, but to do that I'd have to know what the high priority sites were.

The people I absolutely blame are the ones who decided to go in with too few troops. This certainly includes Donald Rumsfeld and the President, at whose desk the buck stops, and who is (I assume) perfectly capable of asking such questions as, "Are we sure we have enough troops?", "Do we have plans in place to secure the declared WMD sites?" "Why not?", and the like. Donald Rumsfeld was the one who had the clever idea of scfrapping the original army plan and cutting the troops it called for by something like two thirds. The President was the one who appointed him, and who approved his various decisions. They are the ones I blame for not doing their jobs, not the troops on the ground who (as far as I know) were not asked to secure the sites, and thus, chains of command (rightly) being what they are, should not have done so.

"I would still accept Bush as my President if he wins, just like I did last time."

Explain this please. I presume you will not claim Kerry is the real President, presiding in Avignon/Boston.

On the other hand I doubt that this means you will support Bush in all of his policies and decisions, including the election of an increased Republican majority in 2006, in order that he might rule more effectively. On the contrary I would guess you might like a more Democratic Congress on 06, precisely in order to obstruct Bush in the enactment of his agenda. Or enable an agenda not to Bush's liking.

I would imagine you might use this forum to argue against specific parts of the Bush agenda, in the hope that public discussion would directly decrease Bush's ability to govern in a way to his liking. And so also, general attacks on Bush's moral and political legitimacy would likewise hinder his productivity.

As the organized Republican attacks on Bill Clinton from 1992 thru the impeachment weakened his ability to govern. Or are such weapons only available to Republicans?

Sebastian, the point is even assuming that Bush has a case for claiming that the explosives were gone by the time US troops could secure the site (a case that looks extremely shaky, by the way) it's completely wrong of Bush to claim that Kerry is criticizing the troops.

Kerry isn't. Quite plainly, Kerry is laying the blame for the looted explosives exactly where it belongs, and only where it belongs: with the Bush administration.

The explosives were absolutely known to be there - no one can argue about that - in January 2003. (See timeline.) The IAEA also visited the site on March 8, 2003, and say that the seals were unbroken - that is, no obvious sign of looting. You can find details of the various US military visits between the invasion (March 19) and the next formal inspection (May 27) but what's absolutely clear is that no specific orders were given to secure this site.

Let's say that the rather muddled claims being made that the site was looted before US troops could reach it are true, and that sometime between March 8 and March 19 all the explosives were taken. Does that make Bush's current claims any better?

No. Because, one: he's telling a direct and very easily verified lie about what Kerry said. That he expects to get away with it says a lot about his opinion, or his handlers' opinion, of the people he expects to vote for him.

Two: Because even if it were true that the explosives were looted before the invasion, this would in no way excuse the planners of the invasion/occupation from sending a team to investigate this and secure the facility. On March 19 2003, no one could have known whether or not the site still had dangerous quantities of explosives: it should therefore have been a high priority to have troops there to search the site, establish what was there, and if the explosives were there (as the report from the 3rd Infantry Division on April 3 says they were) put it under guard to prevent it from being looted. This wasn't done, and the fact that it wasn't done is not the fault of the troops: it's the fault of the Bush administration. As Kerry, quite clearly, is saying.

Sebastian,

Even if the explosives were removed post-invasion, the only way the blame falls onto the troops is if they were given orders to secure the materials in the site and failed to follow those orders.

But if they were never given orders to secure the site's materials or if those were tertiary orders, prioritized below clearing the site of enemy combatants and moving on towards Baghdad? Then those decisions -and the blame for them- belong to the civilian leadership and the political appointees who set the priorities.

For those officials -this administration- to try to avoid blame for their decisions by hiding behind the troops (who are the ones to suffer when the administration makes poor decisions) is cowardly. Dragging them forward to answer for their decisions is the proper thing to do, and it should be done more often.

Kerry's formulation, separating the administration from the troops, is exactly right. Bush's defense is wrong - not least because if we (by which I mean our intelligence services, not "we the people") really Don't know whether the explosives were still around when our troops passed through, it is because his administration didn't think it important enough to find out.

I think my post became redundant in the time it took me to write it :)

I find it very unlikely that the explosives were removed when they were in control of the site.

That is indeed unlikely, as the troops did not control the site. The Third Infantry searched it briefly on April 3 or 4, 2003, and at that time, as the article you referenced states, there were at least thousands of boxes of explosives still there. There were far too few troops and not enough time to search the entire complex. From the article, apparently the search was focused mainly on the chemical weapons snipe hunt. From the fact that explosives were still there, you conclude the explosives were probably not there. That's an interesting branch of logic you are exploring there.

On April 10, 2003, the Second Brigade stopped at the site but did not search it. No orders were given to take control of the site, even though the weapons inspectors knew exactly what was there. The IAEA warned that the site represented "the greatest explosives bonanza in history". Still, no orders were given to secure it. The commander in charge on the 10th said recently that he would have needed 4 times the troops he had to secure all the weapons depots he came across. Whose responsibility was it to get him the troops he needed?

The problem is that you are trying to blame Bush for an allegedly bad decision on incredibly shaky evidence. There isn't good evidence that the explosives were there when the troops got there. An explanation of how hundreds of tons of explosives could have gotten through closed streets has not been offered. An explanation how the 'insurgency' hid the huge number of trucks isn't offered.

The story as currently offered by the NYT makes no logical sense.

Jesurgislac, your timeline has already been exposed as having serious errors. See the previous thread on this topic.

bob m: what I meant was: I will disagree with Bush, work to elect Democrats to the House and Senate, etc., but I will regard him as someone who is our legitimate President, entitled to exercise the powers of that office. I would of course feel free to criticize him, but I would not think that it was OK to do whatever was necessary to subvert him on the grounds that he's not legitimately the President. Some Republicans did this in 1992, and I thought it was odious. Some Democrats did this after 2000, and while I thought they had a better case (not on the grounds that Gore won the popular vote, but on the grounds that I thought Bush v. Gore was wrongly decided, and that some members of the majority decided as they did for political reasons), I thought they were wrong.

Felixrayman, are you deliberately misstating the article I cite?

"But inspectors were unable to inspect the RDX stockpile and could not verify that the RDX was still at the compound."

CMatt: For those officials -this administration- to try to avoid blame for their decisions by hiding behind the troops (who are the ones to suffer when the administration makes poor decisions) is cowardly. Dragging them forward to answer for their decisions is the proper thing to do, and it should be done more often.

Exactly. Bush is using the troops as a political shield. This is the height of hypocrisy.

Timeline and witnesses are the usual attempt to drown in minutiae the larger and more important point about pre- and post-war incompetence in planning and execution. Which needs no further evidence.

Like the argument over type fonts in memogate buried the lead about Bush's less than honorable National Guard service. The pattern of defense is becoming so obvious as to become totally ineffective.

Felixrayman, are you deliberately misstating the article I cite?

No.

Did you even read the whole thing?

Sebastian, again, you are missing the point.

Unless the Bush administration knew that the site had been looted before March 19 (which I find highly unlikely) it wasn't an allegedly bad decision just not to bother checking it out and putting under guard: it just was a bad decision.

This wasn't a hidden weapons site: it had been verified and sealed by the IAEA. There could be no possible excuse for the absence of any specific orders to have it searched and secured ASAP after invading.

Jesurgislac, your timeline has already been exposed as having serious errors. See the previous thread on this topic.

Not my timeline, but Jeanne's. I am aware that Slartibartfast, at least, has claimed it is "completely inaccurate", but as he is either unable or unwilling to cite why every date and event listed, which are verified by contemporary news reports, are all "inaccurate", I have to take that as mere faith-based assertion, not as a reality-based criticism.

But in any case, the accuracy or otherwise of the timeline does not affect the main point. This site was known to have highly dangerous explosives in large quantities: yet the Bush administration gave no specific orders to search and secure it, and this is, as Kerry clearly points out, a mistake made by the Bush administration, not by the troops.

Hoist, meet petard. In a normal presidential campaign, one could accuse Kerry of overstating this (or overstating Bush's connection to this), which is why so many have given the long list of military setbacks as excusing this one and why examination of the timeline seems paramount to some. But this is not an ordinary campaign and Kerry is probably right to hammer on this.

The analogy I would make is to meetings I have here in Japan. Consensus decision making often means that rather than make a rational and logical evaluation of what needs to be done, decisions are often made that purposely skirt around particular beliefs held by a few or even one of the persons participating. Because of that, if there is something that really needs to be changed, the process is not to lay everything out logically and show that even though consideration X might be important, consideration Y outweighs it, you find consideration Z and claim that it cannot be ignored and everytime someone brings up anything else, you say no no no, we have to do this because of consideration Z. That is what this issue is, and there is a particular sad satisfaction in watching the BC team be on the receiving end. Fortunately, here in Japan, this situation is the result of the hangover of a seniority based system that forces one to respect the contribution of elders in the system even if they may be wrong wrong wrong. Unfortunately, in the US, it is the result of the systematic way that BC has taken specific points about Kerry and Democrats and magnified them.

There is no way anyone but a diehard partisan could look at that timeline and not see serious planning deficiencies. The administration had the capacity and competence to quickly and efficiently secure the oil fields, which was a good thing. Why would huge high explosive caches not be given equal priority? Not enough troops to do both, perhaps???
Everyone other than Bush partisans now expect the administration response of obsfucation and blame shifting. SSDD. What would happen if they actually admitted fault in some matter? The apocalypse commences? The Red Sox win the series? Maybe they would be roundly applauded for unprecedented honesty. Who knows.

A few rebuttals:

The explosives were not there when the US troops arrived.

Believing this is a nice fantasy supported by no facts, and contradicted by many.

But realize something else. These explosives were uniquely dangerous (despite the .1% line by the apologists). Proper planning would have tasked a group to secure them as soon as possible -- just like those groups immediately searching for the non-existent WMD. Had that been done, that group would have dutifully secured the explosives at the first opportunity or reported that they were missing before they would be secured.

Instead, we are relying on anecdotal observations by the 101st, 3ID or their imbeds (all of which provide no support for the "they were already gone" story since none of them looked for the explosives, and they indicate that they did not observe any signs of looting predating their arrival).

So the first screw up was ignoring the explosives outright. Only because of that screw up can Bush apologists play this game that "maybe they were already gone" and pretend that absolves his leadership.

It was not practical for the explosives to have been looted.

This again is fantasy thinking. A far greater tonnage of booty was looted from countless locations around Iraq. The weapons depots were not secured at all for weeks, and poorly secured for months after that.

Jeanne's timeline appears to be amply cited.

Does Sebastian, Slarti or anyone else have a different timeline, with citation TO ORIGINAL SOURCES?

While my comments may not reveal it, I'm actually willing to give the benefit of doubt to the administration, especially in responding to the rapidly changing events in the fog of war.

But once again, the record evidence dispels my doubt. The record appears clear to me that the administration made very little effort to control ammunition storage sites during and immediately after the invasion, and this includes Al Qaaqaa.

(Troubling thoughts: where is this stuff now? could a review of ELINT determine when 40+ non-US trucks was at the site for any length of time? how many ammunition storage sites are there in Iraq and what is the status of decommissioning them? Since Iraq is, apparently, still awash in weapons, why did the US have the policy of intrusive home searches, which did so much to alienate the population in early days of the occupation?)

Francis

FDL raises some good points. To be sure, the US knew--pre-invasion--the al Qaqaa site was a repository for HE and possibly WMD. As such, it would not be unreasonable to assume NIMA was tasked to keep an eye on activities in and around this weapons site.

Very likely, advance recon teams were deployed near al Qaqaa prior to the invasion.

Jeanne's timeline appears to be amply cited.

Yes, but unfortunately at least one of her cites disagrees with her point in which it's cited. I've already discussed this, so: Horse. Dead.

I've already linked to original sources, so that horse is also dead. If you're looking for another, this one is good, albeit terse. Arrived at through fas.org's Iraq section. There may be more gold there, but I just stumbled across it and haven't had time to browse.

After the debates, which I though Kerry clearly outperformed Bush I really was worried about Bush losing the election.

But now seeing how desperate so many Kerry supporters have really become I can only think it is due to them realizing (at some level) Bush is going to win. Hence, the no holds barred approach...

I must admit after reading these posts I am more confident that Bush will win.

Thanks

Slarti: Yes, but unfortunately at least one of her cites disagrees with her point in which it's cited.

Which appears to be your sole, and rather inexplicit criticism of a timeline that you nonetheless dismissed as "completely inaccurate".

Slarti: I've already discussed this, so: Horse. Dead.

Neigh! the horse does not die merely because you assert it to be dead.

If you want to claim Jeanne's timeline is "completely inaccurate", you have to show that it is completely inaccurate - ideally, on Jeanne's blog, where she can update her timeline according to the facts you have discovered.

But, as said already: Bush's attack on Kerry doesn't work no matter how you futz around with the timeline: unless Bush can show that, despite IAEA reports, he knew there were no explosives there on March 19. And I don't see how he can do that, nor - if he could - why he hasn't done so already, instead of lying about what Kerry said.

I'm simply astounded by how much Bush is counting on cognitive dissonance to get him re-elected. Imagine if, in "The Dead Zone", Martin Sheen's candidate had not simply shielded himself with the baby in order to keep from getting shot, but had simultaneously made speeches and distributed talking points to the effect that Christopher Walken's character was actually aiming for the baby.

That is pretty much what Bush is doing here.

Again and again and again. OK once more then for the factually impaired. This was how it was being reported back when it was actually happening. Bear in mind that both HMX and RDX are white, crystalline powders:

"Closer to Baghdad, troops at Iraq's largest military industrial complex found nerve agent antidotes, documents describing chemical warfare and a white powder that appeared to be used for explosives.

Col. John Peabody, engineer brigade commander of the 3rd Infantry Division, said troops found thousands of 2-by-5-inch boxes, each containing three vials of white powder....

Initial reports suggest the powder is an explosive, but tests are still being done, a senior U.S. official said"

FoxNews (04.04.03)

"In the first of yesterday's discoveries, the 3rd Infantry Division entered the vast Qa Qaa chemical and explosives production plant and came across thousands of vials of white powder, packed three to a box."

Gulf News (04.06.03)

"Closer to Baghdad, troops at Iraq's largest military industrial complex found nerve agent antidotes, documents describing chemical warfare and a white powder that appeared to be used for explosives.

Col. John Peabody, engineer brigade commander of the 3rd Infantry Division, said troops found thousands of five-centimetre by 12-centimetre boxes, each containing three vials of white powder, together with documents written in Arabic that dealt with how to engage in chemical warfare.

A senior U.S. official familiar with initial testing said the powder was believed to be explosives. The finding would be consistent with the plant's stated production capabilities in the field of basic raw materials for explosives and propellants."

GlobalSecurity.org (04.05.03)

And now:

AP via Jerusalem Post (10.25.04):

"At the Pentagon, an official who monitors developments in Iraq said US-led coalition troops had searched Al-Qaqaa in the immediate aftermath of the March 2003 invasion and confirmed that the explosives, which had been under IAEA seal since 1991, were intact. Thereafter the site was not secured by U.S. forces, the official said, also speaking on condition of anonymity."


So what do we have? A contemporaneous, first-hand account that on April 3, 2003, elements of the 3ID found thousands of 2-by-5-inch boxes, each containing three vials of white powder, and the initial analysis indicated that the stuff was an explosive.


Now Drudge and the Washington Times would have us believe that the Russkies took it all?

You mean to say they did this and we didn't know that, either?

Slarti:

From the Washington Post:

Providing an official timeline of events that he described as still very preliminary, Bryan Whitman, a senior Pentagon spokesman, said IAEA personnel had visited Qaqaa on March 9 and found intact seals on the bunkers where the HMX was stored. U.S. forces invaded Iraq on March 19.

[Courtesy of Body & Soul's revised timeline.]

Incidentally, Slarti, your own source suggestions a contradiction to your "dead horse" theory:

From vertic.org's recapping of UNMOVIC's activities, there were two inspections on March 8th and one on March 9th. The March 8th inspections interest me: the purpose of the first was to "check tags" on "missiles"; the second was to "tag equipment" on "chemicals". Given the various contemporaneous accounts -- thanks very much for those cites, BobTheBlaster -- and the terseness of your sources, I'm guessing that either the first inspection checked tags on more than merely missiles (i.e. the high explosives) or that the second inspection also rechecked the existing tags on chemical explosives. I say this because none of the missions marked on the Vertic webpage indicate "explosives" as a separate category, yet we know that the explosives were both checked and tagged.

More pointedly, despite your claims of equine thanatopsy, you've yet to provide sufficient evidence to disprove the contention that the explosives were rechecked on March 9th. Given the preponderance of evidence indicates that the explosives were, in fact, checked in the March 8th-9th time-frame (dateline interference, maybe?) I'd say you'd need to rustle up a more complete inspector's report to make your counter-claim.

Of course, none of this addresses my primary concern: we knew those explosives had been there and, if Condi Rice really didn't know they'd been shifted until October, we had every reason to believe they were still there. In that case, why the *#$%! didn't we check and secure that site earlier? May 27th was way too freakin' late -- and no, I don't need hindsight to tell me that.

Gee whillikers!! Lookee here:

"Using GPS technology and talking with members of the 101st Airborne we've determined our crew embedded with them may have been on the southern edge of the AlQaqaa installation, where that ammunition disappeared. Our crew was based just south of AlQaqaa. On April 18, 2003 they drove two or three miles north into what is believed to be that area.

During that trip members of the 101st Airborne Division showed our crew bunker after bunker of material labelled explosives.

They also found bags of material men from the 101st couldn't identify, but box after box was clearly marked 'explosive'. In one bunker, there were boxes marked with the name 'AlQaqaa', the munitions plant where tons of explosives allegedly went missing.

Once the doors to the bunkers were opened, they weren't secured. They were left open when our crew and the military went back to their base. 5 Eyewitness New Photojournalist Joe Caffrey says 'We weren't quite sure what were looking at, but we saw so much of it and it didn't appear that this was being secured in any way. It was several miles away from where military people were staying in their tents'."

KSTP

Gotta love them embeds!!

Anarch you're welcome, but credit where credit is due: quite a bit of the lifting was done by those unnamed souls over at Kos. There is an excellent kospedia, or whatever those things are called.

Equine thanatopsy?

Sounds pretty bad!

http://abcnews.go.com/WNT/story?id=204304

Oct. 27, 2004 — Iraqi officials may be overstating the amount of explosives reported to have disappeared from a weapons depot, documents obtained by ABC News show.

...But the confidential IAEA documents obtained by ABC News show that on Jan. 14, 2003, the agency's inspectors recorded that just over three tons of RDX were stored at the facility — a considerable discrepancy from what the Iraqis reported.

The IAEA documents could mean that 138 tons of explosives were removed from the facility long before the United States launched "Operation Iraqi Freedom" in March 2003.

Gee, what a surprise. And the geniuses at the IAEA...

The documents show IAEA inspectors looked at nine bunkers containing more than 194 tons of HMX at the facility. Although these bunkers were still under IAEA seal, the inspectors said the seals may be potentially ineffective because they had ventilation slats on the sides. These slats could be easily removed to remove the materials inside the bunkers without breaking the seals, the inspectors noted.

I'm sure the honorable Saddam Hussein would have never thought to remove the materials in that manner...

Okay now let's see who is being dishonest...

http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=12333&Cr=iraq&Cr1=

25 October 2004 – More than 340 tons of high explosives that had been subject to United Nations monitoring were stolen or looted from a government facility in Iraq, the chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) reported today.

The missing explosives include 195 metric tons of HMX that had been under IAEA seal, as well as 141 tons of RDX and almost six tons of PETN, both subject to regular monitoring of stock levels, Mr. ElBaradei says.

But, but didn't we just hear...

But the confidential IAEA documents obtained by ABC News show that on Jan. 14, 2003, the agency's inspectors recorded that just over three tons of RDX were stored at the facility — a considerable discrepancy from what the Iraqis reported.

I guess he just didn't get that memo from the IAEA. Oh, I forgot... he's the Chief. Heck, this kind of stuff happens all the time the week before U.S. elections.

If he had I am sure he would not have claimed on Monday that there were 141 tons. There's no way he would stoop to being deceptive.

Blue,
I envy your total lack of knowledge about html tags like blockquote and italic and anchors. To me, it's rather old hat, but for you a whole world awaits. I honestly can't remember a time when I didn't know how to use them, but I'm sure that there was, and I can watch your progress and try to recreate those halycon days. I only hope it serves you well.

liberal japonicus,

Nice commentary on the issues I raised in my post.

I can only take your lack of focus on the issue and an attack on my skills on the Internet as meaning that you agree that many jumped onto the Bush bashing bandwagon too quickly.

Btw, don't confuse lack of time to post with lack of skills.

BLUE


http://www.rude people who have no business judging others.com


http://www.don't be an ass.com


Just in case you don't get it. It's a fake link.

I refer you to the comments you made on hilzoy's post immediately after this one. You may wish to check out pot.meets.kettle.org

lib,

So much anger today... I wonder why.

I do think that we should not reach any conclusions yet. But, then I am not the one doing the attacking.

But, I do appreciate you giving us a classic example of a liberal attack.

Read Content
Ignore Content
Make personal attack.

We don't need no steenkin' pictures!!

Blue, I have to apologize. I looked back and now see that it was blogbudsman that wrote the passage that I echoed, not you. I wanted to point out that your fisking of the two articles that you quote are quite difficult to understand because you don't separate your comments from what the articles say and I remembered the previous passage, but thought you wrote it and got carried away.

btw, I've already noted that I think this is overblown, but have suggested that it is a result of the campaign that the administration has conducted which has sought to magnify minute details for political gain.

Again, please accept my apologies.

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