With Iraq’s WMD programs being found by U.S. soldiers, according to a recent New York Times report, many conservatives are claiming former President George W. Bush was right to take out Saddam Hussein. But this reaction to the article has already triggered a debate, with progressives arguing over the word “active.”
In a related report by The Inquisitr, it’s been reported that ISIS terrorists may have used chemical weapons on the Kurds in Syria.
According to the report, American troops secretly reported finding roughly 5,000 chemical warheads, shells or aviation bombs, and it’s believed at least 17 American military service members were exposed to Iraq’s WMDs after 2003. Retired Army major Jarrod Lampier was present when one of the largest chemical weapon stockpiles was unearthed and he says, “I love it when I hear, ‘Oh there weren’t any chemical weapons in Iraq.’ There were plenty.”
Now, both conservatives and progressives are accusing each other of shifting the goalposts, with much of the controversy sounding like Bill Clinton saying, “It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is.” For example, the Conservative Tribune claims the New York Times is rewriting history with this paragraph.
“After the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, Mr. Bush insisted that Mr. Hussein was hiding an active weapons of mass destruction program, in defiance of international will and at the world’s risk,. United Nations inspectors said they could not find evidence for these claims.”
The Conservative Tribune claims this “first sentence is nothing short of a lie” and insists George W. Bush “never posited the existence of an ‘active’ program.” Instead, it’s claimed Bush’s warnings over Iraq’s WMD programs were true.
“But the best evidence that Bush never made such a claim comes from The Times itself, not in what the article says, but in what it does not say. If Bush had argued for the existence of an ‘active’ WMD program as justification for the invasion of Iraq, you can be sure that they would have quoted him. The fact that they don’t is strong evidence that they can’t.”
Writing for Vox, progressives claim this is not true at all and quote George W. Bush as indirectly claiming an active weapons of mass destruction program in 2002.
“Saddam Hussein still has chemical and biological weapons, and is increasing his capabilities to make more. And he is moving ever closer to developing a nuclear weapon.”
They also quote former National Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice as quoting intelligence reports suggesting it was possible Saddam Hussein was only “six months from a crude nuclear device.” American Thinker bypasses the entire debate over the word “active” by noting that “while these chemical WMDs were not part of an ‘active’ program, this does not refute the fact that Saddam was in violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions requiring him to account for and destroy his WMDs.”
The New York Times article also contains this startling line.
“The Iraqi troops who stood at that entrance are no longer there. The compound, never entombed, is now controlled by the Islamic State.”
Regardless of the political debate, the full extent of ISIS’ WMD capabilities have been debated by the experts ever since it was revealed that the ISIS in Iraq had uncovered Saddam Hussein’s WMD stockpiles. The ISIS terrorist group even managed to recover nuclear materials in addition to chemical weapons secreted in different locations throughout Iraq. Some experts concluded ISIS should not have the expertise necessary to create even a dirty bomb, never mind a full functioning WMD like a nuclear weapon.
The good news is that experts believe the discovery of Iraq’s WMD stockpiles may actually pose more of a danger to the Islamic fighters themselves since it was assumed they could hurt themselves in the process of attempting to make a functioning WMD. At the same time, since it’s believed ISIS has access to half a billion dollars in funding, some experts fear they may eventually be able to use a WMD in an attack.