Saturday, January 10, 2004

No Patriots at the Carnegie

The Carnegie Endowment criticizes administration's public assessments of Iraq dangers,
At a State Department news conference, Powell disagreed with a private think tank report that maintained Iraq had not been an imminent threat to the United States. And the secretary defended the case he had made last February before the United Nations for a U.S.-led war to force Saddam from power.

Three experts at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace said in a report Thursday that the Bush administration systematically misrepresented a weapons threat from Iraq, and U.S. strategy should be revised to eliminate the policy of unilateral preventive war.

''It is unlikely that Iraq could have destroyed, hidden or sent out of the country the hundreds of tons of chemical and biological weapons, dozens of Scud missiles and facilities engaged in the ongoing production of chemical and biological weapons that officials claimed were present without the United States detecting some sign of this activity,'' said the report by Jessica T. Mathews, Joseph Cirincione and George Perkovich.

Iraq's nuclear program had been dismantled and there was no convincing evidence it was being revived, the report said.

And the U.S.-led war on Iraq in 1991 combined with U.N. sanctions and inspections effectively destroyed Iraq's ability to produce chemical weapons on a large scale, it said.

Years of U.N. inspections to determine whether Saddam was harboring weapons of mass destruction were working well, and the United States should set up jointly with the United Nations a permanent system to guard against the spread of dangerous technology, the report said.

It recommended that consideration be given to making the job of CIA director a career post instead of a political appointment.
Imagine Powell disagreeing with a report that ostensibly says he lied and yet…it would appear we've come full circle.

Powell now admits they have No Hard Proof in Linking Iraq to Al Qaeda.

And in February of 2001, he had this to say:
We had a good discussion, the Foreign Minister and I and the President and I, had a good discussion about the nature of the sanctions -- the fact that the sanctions exist -- not for the purpose of hurting the Iraqi people, but for the purpose of keeping in check Saddam Hussein's ambitions toward developing weapons of mass destruction. We should constantly be reviewing our policies, constantly be looking at those sanctions to make sure that they are directed toward that purpose. That purpose is every bit as important now as it was ten years ago when we began it. And frankly they have worked. He has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors. So in effect, our policies have strengthened the security of the neighbors of Iraq, and these are policies that we are going to keep in place, but we are always willing to review them to make sure that they are being carried out in a way that does not affect the Iraqi people but does affect the Iraqi regime's ambitions and the ability to acquire weapons of mass destruction, and we had a good conversation on this issue.
Ah, we note with amusement the 'qualifying' "hard" in his statement regarding Al Qaeda links but what of WMDs? It seems the Carnegie report came to the same conclusion that Powell did in 2001.


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