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Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Left I on the News, 10 Years Ago

This blog came into existence in August, 2003, several months after the invasion of Iraq. But prior to that invasion, the author wrote an unpublished letter to the editor, which I reproduce here to remind readers that not everyone was drinking the Kool-Aid Colin Powell was pouring at the U.N. on the day that really clinched the U.S. government's attempt to persuade those that matter (the media and the Democrats in Congress, certainly not the public who were not convinced, nor even the U.N. Security Council for that matter) that an invasion of Iraq was necessary:
While Iraq's compliance with U.N. Resolution 1441 is still being investigated by U.N. inspectors, thanks to Colin Powell it is now an incontrovertible fact that the United States is in violation of that resolution, which requires "all Member States" to provide to UNMOVIC "any information related to prohibited programmes." But U.S. photos purporting to show removal of banned materials from suspect sites were taken last year and have not been previously shared with inspectors. Clearly, the lame excuse that we are protecting "sources" doesn't wash, since everyone knows that the U.S. has spy satellites monitoring Iraq (and the rest of the world).

The reason why the U.S. has not shared this "evidence" are readily apparent. George Bush and Tony Blair have stood before the cameras before and trotted out photos purporting to show, among other things, Iraq rebuilding nuclear facilities. But inspectors on the ground quickly verified that this was complete nonsense - the facilities in question were rusted, cobwebbed, and hadn't been used in years. Likewise we have heard much about aluminum tubes, which Bush and Powell continue to point to as evidence despite the fact that the IAEA has concluded they were intended for conventional weapons, not centrifuges. The Iraqi government may have minimal credibility, but the sad fact is that the credibility of the U.S. and British governments is nil.

Most of us aren't in a position to judge the accuracy or relevance of the "evidence" presented today by Colin Powell, but a little common sense goes a long way. Powell showed pictures of trucks allegedly evacuating suspect items from a weapons facility two days before inspectors were to arrive. But then he said that the truck caravan was "something we almost never see at this facility." "Almost never?" How often is that? Once a week? Once a month? If the Iraqis were really evacuating the site, wouldn't they do it all at once, and not just at some lengthy, irregular interval?

Powell continued to claim that "we saw this kind of 'house cleaning' at close to 30 sites." The obvious question is this - if we have seen caravans of trucks pulling up to 30 different sites and loading banned material, why is that we haven't ONCE been able to see the same caravan pulling up to another building and unloading, or disappearing underground, and been able to tell the inspectors where the weapons had been moved to?

There is a reason why the U.S. government doesn't want the inspections to continue - the longer they do, the more U.S. lies are exposed. Bravo to the Santa Clara Board of Supervisors for speaking out against this travesty, and demanding that the billions of dollars already being spent on the ongoing U.S. war against the Iraqi people be spent instead meeting the needs of our state, county, and cities.

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