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Iraqi 'warheads' and nuclear papers

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 Iraqi 'warheads' and nuclear papers2003-01-18 18:12
picture by Flemming Funch

The mainstream U.S. news has been reporting that inspectors have found undeclared chemical warheads in Iraq, and it has been made to sound like "Aha, they lied, they had chemical warheads hidden, hoping we wouldn't find them". What they found were some old boxes, from the 1980s, covered with birdshit, that had never been opened, and which contained empty artillery shells. That is first of all within what is allowed for Iraq, and secondly, they were empty. Meaning, they could get filled with chocolate pudding or with explosives or with chemicals, but they weren't. At the bottom is a detailed response to the story, from somebody who knows what they're talking about.

And now the news is that the inspectors have found 3000 pages of information related to making nuclear weapons at the home of a top nuclear scientist, and those hadn't been listed in the official declaration. And they turn out to be old notes about an attempt to use lasers for isotope isolation, which project was abandoned in 1987.

There is a pattern there, which is obviously intended towards finding Iraq in violation of *something*, whether it is really of importance or not. It is a clever and effective pattern to use to do somebody in. The scheme is simply to make complex demands of what the country is supposed to declare, and when and how, and then, the moment they're a little late, or they forgot something somewhere, or they didn't do it exactly right, they can be shown to be in violation. It's a great plan. A country-wide bureaucracy will never be able to make a full and acurate inventory of everything they have anywhere. Particularly not a corrupt dictatorship of a country, who's infrastructure has already been destroyed several times. Are they going to remember all the places they stored some boxes of artillery shells? No. I'm sure, if you asked the U.S. military to do an inventory, they would forget hundreds of thousands of tons of deadly stuff, underground facilities, whole bases, missiles, submarines and who knows what, just because they can't keep track of it.

According to the same principle, you could go and methodically investigate the home of just about anybody in a typical western country, like me or one of my neighbors. And you would, I'd guess in at least 50% of the cases, find material enough to brand people as criminals, perverts, drug addicts, tax evaders, or whatever you happen to be looking for. If you don't really add things up in context, it is very easy to destroy the reputation of even the best of people. And for a screwed up country like Iraq, run by a crazy dictator, they're having a remarkably hard time doing the same thing.

William Rivers Pitt, Author "War on Iraq"
to: Staff / Aaron Brown CNN Subject: Flawed Report; Iraqi Warheads Found

Thursday 16 January 2003

My name is William Rivers Pitt. I am the author of the book 'War on Iraq,' which has appeared on the New York Times bestseller list, and has cracked the top ten bestseller lists of the Washington Post, L.A. Times, San Francisco Chronicle and others. I am also a writer for the publication truthout.org.

I apologize for flouting my resume at you, but I wanted to make sure that you do not dismiss this email as coming from someone not very well versed in this Iraq situation. A correspondent ........ at CNN gave me your address, so that I might pass a note through you to Mr. Aaron Brown. I am hoping he is prepared to hear what I am saying.

First things first: The warheads.

Let's be clear. These were not 'chemical warheads.' In the Iraqi arsenal, a warhead is a warhead - an empty ordnance space strapped to a missile. What matters is the payload, be it explosive or chemical or nuclear. The item placed in the warhead denotes the designation. These warheads were stone-cold empty, so by definition they are not 'chemical warheads.' They are, in fact, nothing, because they were loaded with no payload. Furthermore, the word 'warhead' is in itself misleading, as these were artillery munitions.

Second. Iraq is allowed by UN resolutions to have a variety of weapons, including the Al Samoud missile. We did not want to pull Iraq's fangs completely after the Gulf War, considering the neighborhood they live in. We allowed them to keep missiles that fly only a certain distance (150km most often). Many people will not know this, and will think the presence of these munitions will represent a breach of the UN resolution. This is not the case.

Third. Scott Ritter informed me today that these munitions were part of Iraq's declaration last December. I await further confirmation of this, and so should the journalism world.

Fourth. This is absolutely a vindication of the inspections regime. They found the stuff, and it will be destroyed, and no American soldiers or Iraqi civilians died in the process. Inspections work.

Fifth. Recall how the UNSCOM inspections were undermined by meddling from the American intelligence community. Understand that this warhead story did not come from Blix, or through the normal channels, but through a Japanese (read: close ally) inspector who contacted the news media and let rip before the facts were in hand. Why?

Finally, I want to address a comment you made earlier this week. You said on your show that it was unconscionable that viewers were writing in claiming that CNN wants war because war is good for the media business. I understand that this idea offends the core of your professionalism, but I wonder if you have been watching CNN today.

Your station has referred, over and over again, to these discovered warheads as 'chemical warheads.' The debate has not been centered on what the facts are behind these items - when they were made, whether they were loaded with anything, how long they have been there, whether they were declared - and instead has focused on whether the White House can use this as a pretext for war. Calling these things 'chemical warheads' is a gross exaggeration, which I have heard on CNN no less than seven times during the period I have been writing this message. Mull that.

Please, take the data I have given you and air it, for the sake of a reasoned and complete debate. I remind you that CNN's viewership increased by 500% after 9/11 and that your network made its bones on the first Gulf War. I beg you to get this data out to the American people, who desperately need facts and not overheated innuendo.

With great appreciation,

William Rivers Pitt

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19 Dec 2014 @ 14:16 by Boaz @ : sOEabaNpOFTB
Insanely expensive as these next-gen muiointns are, it puts things into perspective when calculating that the USAF could buy about 650 of these SDB bombs for the price of 1 pre-mature LRIP F-35A!Alternatively, the USAF could buy a latest-block new build F-16 with AESA, plus Sniper pod, plus 2 AIM-120, plus 2 AIM-9X, plus 300 SDB bombs for the price of 1 pre-mature LRIP F-35!  

23 Dec 2014 @ 15:23 by Jon @ : WIYSkQyLfOTISC
Wow, 400km. That's a big improvement over the last MLRS stseym China sent to an expo only a few year ago that only had something like a 125 mile range, right? Why doesn't China produce this for itself for a possible Taiwan invasion scenario?world  

29 Apr 2016 @ 06:06 by Bison @ : wzBBJTMYWvN
I'd vetnrue that this article has saved me more time than any other.  

30 Apr 2016 @ 01:14 by Cathy @ : WUQWKONxwbpFQ
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