Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Wednesday | May 28, 2003

Rumsfeld backtracks on WMD claims

Before the war, Rumsfeld was so sure that Iraq had WMDs, that it disregarded CIA evidence to the contrary and formed his own little in-house intelligence agency to butress the claims.

Now even he has to admit that perhaps he was wrong.

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has suggested publicly for the first time that Iraq may have destroyed chemical and biological weapons before the war there, a possibility that senior U.S. officers in Iraq have raised in recent weeks.

Rumsfeld has repeatedly expressed optimism that it is just a matter of time, and of interviewing enough senior Iraqi scientists and former government officials, before military teams uncover the illicit arms that President George W. Bush cited as a major reason for attacking Iraq and toppling Saddam Hussein's rule.

While Rumsfeld repeated that assertion Tuesday, he added, "It is also possible that they decided that they would destroy them prior to a conflict." Major General David Petraeus, commander of the army's 101st Airborne Division, now in northern Iraq, mentioned the same possibility two weeks ago.

Given that WMDs were the administration's primary justification for war (as it made Iraq a clear and imminent danger), is the realization that no WMDs existed mean that all the death in the conflict was for naught?

How can Bush justify the death of 18-year-old Army private David Evans, who leaves behind his three-month-old son?

On Sunday and Monday seven other brave Americans, like Evans, were sacrificed at the altar of Bush's incompetence and political opportunism. And there is no end in sight. (We may have suffered four more losses today.)

How much death is too much? How long before the costs are too high, where even an apathetic US public will be forced to stand up and take notice? There has to be a tipping point.

Posted May 28, 2003 09:10 AM | Comments (156)


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