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May 23, 2004

Sarin: The Left Needs to Get its Story Straight

Ah, Sarin. The word that few on the pro-Saddam left can hardly stir themselves to utter.

Their current theory seems to be -- to the extent they're willing to announce it at all -- that this was just a shell that somehow eluded Saddam's dilligent efforts to destroy it. He just sort of missed it, despite his best efforts to rid himself of these accursed weapons. But, drat his bad luck, now it's turned up, in the hands of terrorists, wounding two US troops.

Here's the problem.

The "accidental retention and disovery" theory would seem to require a lot of such shells in production. It is only plausible that Saddam "just missed" this one shell if there were a lot of them laying about.

Trouble is, Saddam never delcared having such binary-form sarin shells in production. He only admitted to having a few "prototypes" and that the program never reached full production. And of course he claimed to have destroyed all of those.

If this shell was indeed a "prototype," one of just several produced in his laboratories, how is it possible that he could have lost track of it? One could lose track of one shell among thousands which are distributed to artillerymen in the field; but one could less plausibly "lose" one shell of a dozen or so which were never distributed to men in the field, and which, of course, would have been kept securely in his death-labs.

If this was just a case of a shell be accidentally "lost" and then conveniently discovered by terrorists, it indicates that Saddam's declarations were false and that he was producing WMD's that he claimed not to be.

So which is it? The left cannot have it both ways here.

They either have to concede that Saddam was illegally and secretly producing undeclared WMD's in great numbers. That's the only way that such a shell could be "lost."

Or else they have to admit the possibility that this wasn't just an "accidentally" lost by Saddam, but rather deliberately retained and hidden.

One way or the other, either by producing far more binary-form sarin shells than he admitted, or by producing only a few while deliberately retaining them for future use, Saddam Hussein was deliberately in breach of his obligations to declare and destroy all of his WMD's.

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posted by Ace at 07:48 PM

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