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March 27, 2006

Saddam, WMD's, And Al Qaeda: What We Now Know

It's hard to upset conventional wisdom, especially when that conventional wisdom is beloved by an entire political movement and their communications staff in the media. But truth is elusive and inexorable. It wants to be free.

Reams of documents – ultimately numbering in the millions of pages by the time CDs, hard drives, and computer memories are downloaded and printed – are slowly beginning to be translated and released for analysis. These documents – though only 2% or so are translated and available – substantiate without doubt the following allegations: Saddam Hussein and bin Laden, the Baathist regime and al Qaeda had extensive, wide reaching ties. Saddam was, at a minimum, a supporter of the 911 attacks if not a sponsor of them. Saddam’s intelligence services trained more than 8,000 al Qaeda terrorists, primarily from Somalia and Sudan, at camps such as Salman Pak and Ansar al-Islam within Iraq. And Saddam helped finance al Qaeda and similar terrorist groups.

Further, the documents substantiate a broad, on-going program Iraq had to develop nuclear weapons. Indeed, Saddam had instructed his minions to begin preparing to re-energize the program after UN sanctions were lifted, a hope he had reinforced by French, Russian, and German diplomats, and traitors like British Parliamentarian George Galloway, all of whom convinced him that delay and obfuscation of the UN would get him off the hook.

We also know, thanks to the work of former Iraqi Air Force General Georges Sada, that Saddam had several civilian aircraft – one Boeing 747 and a “group” of 727s - stripped of passenger equipment and converted into cargo planes. The aircraft flew 56 sorties between Iraq and Syria, delivering drums of the chemical weapon Sarin along with other chemical and biological weapons. The deal with concocted on Saddam’s orders by “Chemical Ali” his general in charge of special weapons, and Bashar Assad’s cousin, General Abu Ali. It was a rare occasion for cooperation between the rival Baathist states, but as Sada notes, “there was complete agreement between them.”

In addition to the air sorties an uncounted amount of WMD were transported to Syria by commercial trucks – familiar 18-wheelers – and other civilian vehicles, including ambulances. “Saddam was convinced,” according to Sada, “that commercial trucks could pass right through security checkpoints…and they did.” American CIA overhead assets – spy satellites – were on the lookout for military trucks and ignored “routine” commercial traffic.

General Sada is not a lone voice in this matter. The Mossad, Israeli intelligence service, has long claimed that the weapons were transferred out of Iraq. American generals Paul Vallely and Thomas McInnerny noted in their 2004 book, Endgame, that extensive stockpiles of WMD were hidden in three locations within Syria and in the Syrian-controlled terrorist camps of the Bekka Valley in Lebanon. Included in the stocks were nerve agents like Tabun, Sarin 1, and Sarin 2. They did not remain hidden for long.

Up to 20 tons of these chemical agents were intended for use by al Qaeda terrorists in attacking three targets in Amman, Jordan in 2004 – the Jordanian Ministry of Defense and Intelligence Service buildings, and the American Embassy. These were to be simultaneous truck bomb attacks that were thwarted by good counter-intelligence work. The trucks were large 15-ton capacity powerful vehicles that could power through barriers and obstacles to crash into the buildings. At that time the homicide drivers would detonate the ammonium nitrate load triggered by plastic explosives – probably C-4. Resting atop the explosive load were Saddam’s chemicals, sufficient to kill upwards to 100,000 people in downtown Amman, by conservative.

Actually, I'd put Sada's claims in the category of "Things We Suspect, and Require Further Investigation," not "Things We Know."

But that Amman chemical-bombing incident is compelling. And we have not yet heard where, precisely, this huge amount of chemical WMD's came from. Syria, perhaps, or maybe Iran; but Iraq seems a more likely place.

There's more, of course. Read the whole thing.

Thanks to Ogre Gunner.


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posted by Ace at 03:09 PM

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