Tuesday, March 30, 2004

Know Bush Fact #17

Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Despite Bush’s pushing for invasion of Iraq specifically because Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and was actively developing a nuclear weapons program, Bush and the Pentagon failed to make a serious, high-priority attempt to locate and secure the WMDS or the catalogued nuclear research sites.

Two days after U.S. forces gained control of Iraq on April 9, a good three weeks after invading, Rumsfield said, "When there happens to be a weapon of mass destruction suspect site in an area that we occupy and if people have time, they’ll look at it."

One of the greatest dangers was that the nuclear materials known to exist could get in the hands of terrorists.

In mid April, the International Atomic Energy Agency found the U.S. forces had done nothing to secure Iraq’s major nuclear sites, and requested they move quickly to do so, specifically emphasizing concern for the Tuwaitha Nuclear Research facility.

By April 25, The Washington Post reported that Defense officials couldn’t say if the vast nuclear repository’s deadly contents had been stolen, because they hadn’t dispatched investigators to the site yet. The Pentagon and U.S. Central Command was aware at that time that Tuwaitha, only 11 miles from Baghdad, lay unguarded for days and that looters had been inside.

Five other nuclear facilities were looted as well. Files and containers were missing, barrels containing radioactive material were dumped and for three weeks locals drank and bathed in water containing radioactive material.

Finally, in June, the U.S. and IAEA secured Tuwaitha. While much of the missing material was eventually found and purchased back, there is no way of knowing in whose hands the remaining radioactive materials landed.

High-ranking U.S. officials had to acknowledge that the war that was supposed to make us safer, may prove to have aggravated the proliferation threat Bush said he fought to forestall.

To verify/research, Google: IAEA +Tuwaitha.

- March 30, 2004

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