The United States recovered thousands of old chemical weapons in Iraq from 2004 to 2009 and destroyed almost all of them in secret and via open-air detonation, according to a written summary of its activities prepared by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, the international body that monitors implementation of the global chemical weapons treaty.
The 30-page summary, prepared after quietly held meetings between the organization’s technical staff and American officials in Washington in 2009, was provided to The New York Times by the Pentagon on Friday.
It included a table disclosing limited details on 95 separate recoveries and destructions of chemical warheads, shells or aviation bombs, for a total of 4,530 munitions from May 2004 through February 2009 — a period of often intense fighting in Iraq.
The United States later recovered more Iraqi chemical weapons, pushing its tally to 4,996 by early 2011, according to redacted intelligence documents obtained by The Times via the Freedom of Information Act.
The weapons destroyed through early 2009, the newly released report said, included some that contained chemical agents, others that were corroded and degraded, and some that appeared to have been previously demilitarized but that the United States destroyed “to err on the side of safety and security.”
More on the WMD’s that didn’t exist at the NY Times
Let’s how the left spins this into “proving” their lie that Saddam didn’t have any WMD.
More problems at DoD.
@another+vet: That’s easy; “These aren’t the ones we were looking for.”
I wonder when Obama will read THIS in the paper and admit his entire party has been lying (again) all along.
No one disputes that. The significant word in the above sentence is “old.”
That’s exactly what they’ll say completely changing their story that he had NO WMD. They can’t help but lie about this topic or any other one. The left has ZERO integrity which is why it’s pointless to debate or try to reason with them.
Right. I’m sure the Bush administration would have easily sold an invasion of Iraq to the American people and their elected representatives by telling them that we had to destroy unaccounted for stockpiles of deteriorated and dysfunctional chemical ordnance to keep America safe.
If you want to see the people who can’t be reasoned with, look in a mirror.
The significant words are “Iraqi”, “chemical” and “weapons”. I don’t recall anyone putting a date stamp on the eligibility of any WMD’s. The only things that matter is that they were hidden and were lethal.
@Bill: Exactly. He wasn’t supposed to have any WMD- old or new. The charge was that he had both old and new and an ongoing WMD program. If this all of the WMD that existed, then those claiming he had WMD got it at least partially right. The naysaying lefties who are now lying about their original position that he had NO WMD, got it 100% wrong which is why they are now lying about their original position. The studies that concluded he didn’t have an ongoing WMD program or that he didn’t have any new WMD obviously didn’t do as thorough of a job as they said they did given they missed finding almost 5,000 WMD. I would argue that the old stockpiles found themselves constitute a WMD program just not as lethal as thought, again that’s assuming he didn’t have newer WMD. Those documents are heavily redacted so they don’t tell us everything.
Nope. What mattered was whether they represented an actual threat to the people of the United States or other friendly nations. Old chemical ordnance sites that had essentially turned into dangerous toxic waste dumps did not.
I don’t believe wars should be started based on a violation of terms that is a mere technicality. The consequences of doing so are far worse than the violation itself. As we can now see.
Bush never said otherwise
You aren’t paying attention. These weapons have been used as IED’s. What prevented that from happening here? The invasion of Iraq, that’s what.
It is you on the left that make the existence of these weapons a technicality. We didn’t fear some sort of long-range artillery lobbing chemical shells from Iraq to New York. We feared these weapons falling into the hands of al Qaeda and being turned into an IED in cities. So, they are exactly what we were looking for.
Exactly. Word, Mata, and others have posted exactly what was said numerous times as well as pointing out that the WMD issue was just one of many used to justify taking him out. The left is now revising history because their lie that Saddam didn’t have any WMD has been proven to be 100% wrong, something those of us who were boots on the ground over there have known since OIF 1. The fact that they are now lying about their original position about WMD is but another example of their lack of honesty, integrity, and honor.
The left isn’t attempting to revise history. This is history. The Bush administration itself declined to assert that the materials found were the sort of weapons of mass destruction they had anticipated would be found. Because they weren’t. What had been claimed was that Saddam Hussein had an active chemical weapons program, and likely had a program to create nuclear weapons.
No one on the left has denied the existence of old ordnance. The New York Times published a story about such materials last month.
What bothers me is that 2004 til early 2009 was during GWB’s admin. Why didn’t he ever put that info out there. He knows he was being lied about, seems as if he should have put the truth out and made the news people have to admit it.
@Bill: Bill the lefties just don’t want to admit that they were 100% wrong. Bus claimed they had chemical weapons, lefties said no, now we know that there was at least 5,000. I’d call that significant.
Greg, the truth is EVERY one on the left said there were no WMD’s, NONE, now we know the truth.
@Greg: Old weapons kill! Old weapons placed on new systems of delivery are new weapons! Did you miss the part about the rockets Saddam had developed? Also, there was plenty of organophosphates and other chemicals that only needed to be placed in a weapon. I personally saw a 3 acre warehouse with drums stacked on pallets 5 high in south Baghdad at a government ware house along with the military trucks ready to move them. Were they just food additives?
@Greg: The Bush administration declined to address a LOT of the criticisms leveled at it from the left; that would have required a full-time czar to handle that. However, you see the evidence detailed before you. WMD’s were present and have been found.
@Bill: His long stated arguments in the past were that there were NO WMD in Iraq which was later modified to “a few here and there and not stockpiles”. It is easily verifiable in both the FA archives as well as by those of us who have had this debate with him numerous times before. If he is now claiming that he “knew” all along that there were stockpiles of old WMD in Iraq then he is either lying or doesn’t remember what he said before. Given the number of times he made the assertion that were NO WMD, if he doesn’t remember saying it, there is a probably medical issue involved.
The following is from an AlterNet article published May 7, 2003:
I don’t see you verifying it. In any event, you seem to be conflating potentially toxic junk ordnance left over from the Iraq-Iran war of the early 1980s with the sort of Weapons of Mass Destruction President Bush was talking about when he stared straight into the camera and warned of a spreading mushroom cloud over an American city.
That sort of stark, apocalyptic imagery was used to frighten the American public into compliance with a plan to invade and occupy a foreign nation that had not first attacked us, and had no apparent means to do so—something that they generally would not be much inclined to approve of, particularly since we had a war on our hands already. Nothing to back it up has ever been found.
@Greg: Let’s see if this refreshes your memory. Previously you claimed there was no WMD in Iraq. It was brought up that there was. You then claimed that it was only a few here and there and that it didn’t constitute a stockpile. I called you out on it and said that over 500 were found and posted the Fox News link. You then claimed that you posted links that disproved that report when it was first posted here. I then posted the links you posted which did the exact opposite and confirmed what Fox had reported. You then admitted that you never read the links that you yourself posted that “disproved” that over 500 WMD had been found. So not only did you claim there was no WMD or that there was only a few old ones scattered here and there, you actually claimed to have “proven” it. Don’t you remember that? I’m not going to waste my time searching the archives to show your past WMD assertions. You claimed what is now being reported as being over there never existed and you know it as does every other FA poster who has been here for any length of time.
People are equating obsolete ordnance with stockpiles of viable military weapons. In the real world the difference matters enormously. A shell casing filled will toxic chemical residue does not pose anywhere near the same danger as a shell casing filled with non-decomposed mustard gas or nerve agents. It would be safe to assume that such junk would be turning up for years after the Iraq-Iran war.
Such stuff did turn up. The Weapons of Mass Destruction that the Bush administration claimed to exist never have, however. That’s why the Bush administration has never claimed that they did. They’ve got more sense than that. They know perfectly well that the sort of materials they were talking about were never found.
@Greg: Tell you what Greg. You suck up the gases from an obsolete weapon. I have been involved in the demil of some of our old chemical weapons and they are not obsolete. As usual, you stupid voters do not know what you are talking about. Ask the Kurds if those weapons were obsolete. Oh, you can’t because they are dead. Ask the Syrians, since Saddam moved his weapons to Syria. You will always bite on the propaganda before you look for the truth.
@Greg: The reason this story came to light is because these weapons were very viable. They have been being used to kill and wound Americans.
Just like it was feared they would be used in the middle of a US center of population. Face the truth, Greg. Your side has been wrong all along… well, up till now. Now you’re just lying.
You need to get your dates straight. The chemical attack on the Kurds in Halabja occurred in March 1988. Saddam Hussein’s chemical weapons were not “old” at the time. The Iraq-Iran War in which he was using them didn’t end until five months later.
Hussein’s Al Muthanna chemical weapons manufacturing facility was finally destroyed by bombing in 1991. Production never resumed there or anywhere else. By 2000, anything left was old and degraded. Chemical weapons components remained there years later. Some of the chemicals are still likely very dangerous. (As would be any number of toxic chemicals casually abandoned in landfills.) According to the CIA, some of them pose a serious hazard to civilian populations and to anyone who might consider recovering them for the black market. With any luck ISIS won’t handle them as carefully as U.S. military personnel would have done.
Those materials aren’t the Bush Administration’s WMDs either. There’s no credible evidence anything ever went to Syria, either. I don’t consider myself stupid for realizing that.
What was used to kill and wound Americans were the explosives contained in conventional artillery shells. They don’t rapidly degrade over time. They were used to construct IEDs.
I think you are starting to catch on, but I am not sure you realize it yet. Getting closer, though.