OT: Apple, tree..not falling far from...etc

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Fred the Red Shirt wrote:

No. I didn't say that, did I? I said I have no hard evidence. That's a different thing altogether.
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OK, what non-hard evidence do you have?
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Fred the Red Shirt wrote:

I have the exact same amount of hard evidence you have. None. Zero. Zip. Zilch. Nada. I have reports from talking heads, who get their information from various, often sketchy sources, who get their information from who knows where. Wikipedia maybe? If you are in possession of hard evidence to support your position, I'd like you to scan it, or photograph it, then send it to me and some network news types. I'm sure they'd like to see it too.
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As you know, I NEVER asked you about hard evidence.

Earlier you wrote:

What evidence?
and:

Again, what evidence do you have for those claims? Were they referring to 2002, or 1991?
I showed you a little teeny tiny piece of mine. Why not show me some of yours?
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Fred the Red Shirt wrote:

I'm a bit surprised that you included the UNMOVIC site in your evidence. Reading the security council briefings, which went on until the cessation of their Iraq mission, spoke strongly to the unresolved nature of the issue. High points: They looked around but didn't find much. They said that didn't mean they weren't there, just that they didn't find it. That's not surprising considering there were 130 munitions sites, and they didn't have a chance to look at them all.
Discrepancies in what the Iraqi inventory said they built, and what was disposed of or destroyed were at least 1000 tons of CW agent. 100 tons of CW would take up a storage area around the size of an average swimming pool. All 1000 tons could be stored in a small facility. (2 of the 130 Iraqi munitions dumps are each larger than Manhattan.)
Iraq claims that they created very limited, experimental amounts of VX, one of the most powerful nerve agents in existence. And that the VX they created lasted only a couple of weeks before degrading. UNMOVIC found documentation detailing Iraq's solution to this problem, creating a chemical precursor to VX that has much longer shelf life. This precursor would require additional processing to refine it into VX, a quick and relatively easy procedure. UNMOVIC and UNSCOM believed that much larger quantities of this precursor was created. They close the issue by saying that "Iraq will have to further clarify the matter"
Iraq lied about the number of Al Samoud missiles they had built, the inspection teams found 25 undocumented ones at one point and had them destroyed.
There are 326 SA2 missles unaccounted for.
The Muthanna facility, Iraq's main CW storage site, previously sealed in 1994 by UN inspectors, had been reopened and equipment and materials have been removed. UNMOVIC has no information about the whereabouts of these materials.
Key scientists and other personnel to be interviewed by UNMOVIC were not made available for interview.
Regarding the destruction of missiles: "the programme of destruction was not completed when the inspectors were withdrawn. Fifty per cent of the declared warheads and 98% of the missile engines remained intact. Also, there was no time to assess whether the Al Fatah missile programme stayed within the range allowed by Security Council resolutions."
As Hans Blix points out concerning missing items (7900 of which were confirmed to exist by UNSCOM, now have gone missing): "this does not necessarily mean that such items could not exist. They might there remain long lists of items unaccounted for but it is not justified to jump to the conclusion that something exists just because it is unaccounted for" .. ..
Now I'll point out the obvious, that it also is not justified to jump to the conclusion that something doesn't exist just because it wasn't seen by a handful of visiting inspectors. These are just the speaking notes for the security council briefings. There is no evidence here to support the assertion that Iraq was not hiding or continuing research or production for chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons. Quite the opposite, there is much here to show that Iraq was not being totally honest.
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What did you think of the yellowcake documents?

There were several of what Blix referred to as 'discrepencies' where documentation was considered to be insufficient. A major difficulty was accounting for all dual use material that could have been diverted to chemical weapon use, but could also have been use legally.
Please specify the briefings (e.g. date) so we can be sure we are looking at the same thing.

It is also unsurprising since a negative hypothesis cannot be logically proved. UNMOVIC could never claim Iraq had proved that it had no WMD. Even Assuming that Iraq did not, the best UNMOVIC could ever justifiably say is that they didn't find any, not that there weren't any.
They visited over 400 sites, most without giving any advance notice to the Iraqis and some by helicopter, arriving within hours of receiving the latest US intel.

I ask you to specify the UNMOVIC report that said that.
As I recall, regarding VX, UNMOVIC found trace evidence at the disposal site consistent with the disposal of VX, but was unable to determine the quantity. I'd like to know how you got from 'unable to determine the quantity', to a specific figure.

Aside from mustard, Iraqi chemical warfare agents couldn't be stored at all.

Yes, Iraq had some 'fill and fire' shells, but not VX. I'm not clear if those had gone into production before their factories were destroyed in 1991. They also had developed a binary shell that mixed in flight, but there is no evidence that advance beyond the pilot stage.
Again I ask you to specify the UNMOVIC document in which you found this.

Which Iraq never did because we invaded.

Missiles are not chemical, biological or nuclear weapons. Surface to Air (SA2 missiles) were not proscribed. Iraq's contention was that the al Samoud was not proscribed because it only exceeded the permitted range without a payload. IMHO that was a good argument. Regardless, the relented and destroyed them anyhow.
There in no question that Iraq had an active missile program and was pushing the boundaries of their allowed range.
As you know, that is also no what we were discussing.

You are being seriously dishonest now.
http://www.nctimes.com/articles/2004/10/31/news/nation/14_47_4710_30_04.txt
Looters unleashed last year by the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq overran a sprawling desert complex where a bunker sealed by U.N. monitors held old chemical weapons, American arms inspectors report.
Charles Duelfer's arms teams say all U.N.-sealed structures at the Muthanna site were broken into. If the so-called Bunker 2 was breached and looted, it would be the second recent case of restricted weapons at risk of falling into militants' hands.
.....
Under U.N. resolutions banning Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, the U.N. inspectors who moved in after the 1991 Gulf War oversaw destruction of 22,000 chemical weapons at Muthanna by 1998, when they withdrew from Iraq in a dispute over access and CIA infiltration of the U.N. operation.
When U.N. inspectors returned after four years, Muthanna's sealed locations appeared not to have been tampered with, Buchanan said.
IOW, when UNMOVIC inspected in 2002-03, al Muthanna had NOT been 'reopened', but after the US invaded THEN it was looted.
Of course UNMOVIC has no information about the whereabouts of these materials--the US refused to allow UNMOVIC back into the country! (We did allow IAEA back in briefly, to clean up after the looting at Tuwaitha.)

Wrong. Iraq gave permission for the interviews, the personnel them- selves refused to be interviewed. Quite understandable as they were afraid of the Iraqi government. UNMOVIC was arranging to interview them outside of Iraq, and with their families too, with a promise of asylum if necessary. (This I recal form contemporary news stories) But the US invaded before those arrangements could be finalized.

This refers to the withdrawal of inspectors in 2003, who were unable to complete their work BECAUSE we invaded.

Now I'll point out the obvious. You are very seriously truth- challenged when you try to pass off post-invasion looting of Iraqi sites that were still under UNMOVIC seal prior to the invasion, as a justification for the invasion itself.

To the contrary, you have proven that you are dishonest.
And let's not forget that no one but Baghdad Bob ever claimed that Iraq was totally honest. My claims have been that the Bush administration was seriously dishonest and that the facts on the ground in Iraq did not justify the conclusion that Iraq was a nuclear, chemical or biowepons threat.
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Fred the Red Shirt wrote:

No. You're obviously arguing just for argument's sake. You sent the link, so I'll assume you know what's in it.

Read the documents you referenced.

Fantasy.
The same one you sent.

Yep. I'm sure they would have done a 180 and given up all information we requested had we not.

They're delivery platforms for what we're discussing. If they weren't, the inspectors wouldn't have been concerned with them.

Ah. Looters. got it. Glad it definitely wasn't the Iraqis that went in there and took that stuff. Couldn't have been them that 'looted' their weapons supplies.

I did no such thing. I was responding to your question, not trying to justify the war. I can't justify the war. You're just trying to justify your bitter feelings about the administration by spinning every fact as proof of evil. Try looking at things outside of your blinders.

Not in any way. These points were all taken from the briefing notes. You're really stretching here. I thought you were enjoying yourself and applying logic for a good discussion. Clearly you're just arguing for arguments sake, and when your logic fails you, degraded to insults. Sorry for you. Waste of time for me.

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What did you think of the yellowcake documents?

As I thought. Your source is not UNMOVIC, more likely NewsMax and you know better than to admit it.

As I wrote above, regarding VX (and anthrax) the documents I referenced stated that it was not possible to determine the quantity that was destroyed as the disposal site.
They also make it clear that the discrepencies did not prove that Iraq had chemical weapons, that benign explanations were also possible--but not yet proved. They kept pressing Iraq for more evidence and Iraq kept finding it. Blix described it as a continuing process.

The fact that it would be easy to hide something is not evidence that something is hidden.
Something that would not be so easy to hide would be the factories used to produce WMD. As David remarked, no factories, no weapons. Since Iraq did not rebuild the factories destroyed in 1991, where would they have made the weapons you suppose they might have hidden?

Nonsense. Even high purity Sarin and Cyclosarin have a shelf life of ~ 5 years. The Iraqi weapons were NOT high purity and had drasticly shorter shelf lives. By 2002, Muthana had been out of operation for 11 years.

But I see now that is not what you meant. Many chemical weapons have the same precursors and intermediate compounds as pesticides that Iraq was allowed to produce. So there is no doubt that Iraq COULD quickly produce chemical weapons from material that was not proscribed per se. I suppose it may be possible that during the inspections hiatus Iraq could have made chemical weapons or precursors in its civilian pesticide factories. Evidence that they did, is lacking.
As you will recall, I pointed that out early on. For any country with a chemical industry it is virtually a tautology that they COULD produce chemical weapons in short order.

I didn't SEND any. I posted three links and two of them lead to scores of documents. I don't think you are relying on them at all.

My point is that we do not significantly disagree about the Iraqi missile program. It has been suggested, and I think the idea makes good sense, that Iraq had put its resources into missile development and postponed further development of chemical and nuclear weapons until later.
I also make no claim that Saddam Hussein was honest or trustworthy. Iraqi cooperation was forced by the threat of military action. I do claim that Saddam Hussein was desparate to avoid a US invasion.

Don't change the subject. You wrote "The Muthanna facility, Iraq's main CW storage site, previously sealed in 1994 by UN inspectors, had been reopened ..." while carefully neglecting to mention that it was 'opened' by looters AFTER the US invasion.
Plainly you deliberately omitted that crucial fact because you wanted to fool the reader into thinking that it had been put back into operation by Saddam Hussein between 1998 and 2002.
When UNMOVIC returned to Iraq in 2002-03 Muthana had not been rebuilt or repaired. It had NOT been reopened.

> not trying to

I never asked you if Muthana was looted after the US took over responsibility for security in Iraq.
So what exactly was the question to which you were responding?

Of course not. Logic does not permit the proof of a negative hypothesis. That is why George W Bush demanded that Iraq prove it had no WMD. He knew that it was a demand that could not be met no matter how well Iraq cooperated with UNMOVIC.

You wrote "The Muthanna facility, Iraq's main CW storage site, previously sealed in 1994 by UN inspectors, had been reopened ..." while carefully neglecting to mention that it was 'opened' by looters AFTER the US invasion.
Plainly you deliberately omitted that crucial fact because you wanted to fool the reader into thinking that it had been put back into operation by Saddam Hussein between 1998 and 2002.
That is dishonest. That is no stretch.
When UNMOVIC returned to Iraq in 2002-03 Muthana had NOT been reopened.
--
FF

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I keep trying to make my basic point. That is that we do not have enough information to come to the conclusions that many people, including yourself, have come to.
It's good to keep digging, questioning, but to pretend that you have it all down pat, to KNOW that the prez started the war on a whim, that he did not believe that Iraq was a threat and invaded anyway, is just folly.
I know that is how you want to feel. That is what you want to believe. Fine and dandy, it really doesn't matter to me.
I for one, think that some of the information the administration based their decisions on, while faulty, was trusted by them.
I don't support the war. I want the US out of the middle east.
I also don't believe the conspiracy theories.
I'm not going to continue arguing the same points over again. We're beyond 'ad nauseum', I don't have time or motivation for 'ad infinitum'.
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Since you did not include any references, I don' t know to whom you intend this to apply.
I want to feel proud of my President and my country.
I don't believe the war was started on a whim. I've concluded that it was NOT started to protect us because that is where the evidence has lead me.
I have concluded that this administration cannot be trusted because they have been caught in so mane deceptions.

And yet, now that you have seen the yellowcake documents, do you really think they thought they were genuine?
Why on earth would they trust Curveball, a person described as a crazy drunk, while rejecting information from a prominent defector and their own highly placed mole in the Iraqi government?
They didn't err by trusting unreliable sources. They deliberately used or rejected intelligence based on the desired conclusion.
They bribed reporters, held fake news conferences, and even planted a fake reporter in the White House press corps.
When Hans Blix, in his report to the UIN security council calls the Iraqi cooperation 'unprecedented', and means it in a good way, and then Bush says that Iraq has refused to cooperate with UNMOVIC a very clear conclusion can be reached.
Maybe I have it all wrong. Maybe black is white, up is down, good is evil. Maybe after Pearl Harbor was bombed we should have declared war on Brazil. Maybe the Pope smokes pot.
Maybe we are all butterflies dreaming we are people. The possibilities are endless. But they are not equally probable.

IOW you know better than to repeat an argument that has been rebutted, or repeat a lie that has been exposed as such.
That puts you ahead of the current administration.
--
FF




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wrote:

Game. Set. Match.
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On Wed, 20 Feb 2008 21:11:57 -0800, Fred the Red Shirt wrote:

The most benign explanation of why the Bush administration wanted a war was that some of them felt that they could establish a democracy in Iraq that would serve as a beacon for all the oppressive states in the middle east. They would all become democracies, love the US, and thus ensure our oil supplies.
I don't know what they were smoking, but they obviously didn't understand how those people think :-).
As far as deceptions, I wonder how many in the US still believe that Iraq was responsible for 9/11? At one point it was over 50%. And Bush seldom, if ever, directly stated that they were - he just couldn't say "Iraq" without saying "9/11" and vice versa.
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If one has to trick people into doing "the right thing", maybe one should reconsider one's sense of right and wrong.
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Larry Blanchard wrote:

Take a read of Kenneth Timmerman's "Shadow Warriors". He makes some cogent arguments that the real failing of the Bush administration was not doing what all previous administrations have done by cleaning house in the various bureaucracies when he took office. Thus, he had people who had been appointed by the previous administration who were adamantly opposed to his policies in charge of implimementing his policies. He points out areas where some of the actions taken by State Department bureaucrats after the ground war were partially to blame for the action turning into an occupation. Ditto for CIA career bureaucrats undermining the administration in various ways, including deliberately leaking classified information to the media. These actions undermined the administration in ways that were damaging both to it and to the people serving overseas.
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I have no idea who Kenneth Timmerman is (since the last name is Dutch for Carpenter, it must be the obligatory reference to woodworking), and of course didn't read that book. However, you CANNOT blame "bureaucrats" for the Bush administrations concious decisions to forgo complete help from Turkey during the invasion, the decision not to have a real political system in place to govern the liberated Iraqi state after the invasion, the decision to not guard arms and ammunition depots or civil infrastructure (power plants etc), the decision to completely dismantle the Iraqi police etc system (no matter how reprehensible, in a police state you need police in place, albeit with the control of your own top people). All those decisions were or should have been decided differently than they were. Now we have a smoldering fire in Iraq that is being controlled by a disenchanted US military at great costs in lives of very ordinary US citizens. Military hospitals are overwhelmed, VA hospitals stretched beyond imagination, and the worst is the mental illness inflicted upon the poor grunts. We will have to deal with that for the next 50 plus years. How many soldiers have been rotated through Iraq? What is the percentage of PTSD and mental illness resulting? Who is going to pay? We need to keep the Bush tax cuts in place. Let's devalue the dollar another 50% or so, so the cost of living goes up for the poor. Probably won't affect me too much - I invested in the stock market <grin>.
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http://www.2la.org/syria/iraq-wmd.php
Hard evidence, no, but some.
Glen
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http://www.iaea.org/googleResult.html?cx 4828748078731094376%3Am_jpm98tdns&cof=FORID%3A11&q=iraq&sa.x=0&sa.y=0&sa=Submit#1136
http://www.iraqfact.com/Niger_docs.html
http://www.unmovic.org /
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LOL, I am going to use a comment that Doug once made that applies well here.
Not exactly as he put it but it goes something like,,,
Some people are not going to believe being told that "this" pot of boiling water is going to burn you if you put your hand in it. Those people need to put their hands into the boiling water to make sure.
Now at some time in the past that person was told that a pot of boiling water is going to burn you if you put your hand into it. But that was then, it may be different now, the pot of boiling water may not burn your hand if you put your hand in it, now. A similar comparison, SH did have weapons of mass destruction and used them on his people. But that was then, it may be different now, October 2002. We do know that he banned weapons inspectors from his country during that period of time. If you have nothing to hide why shun the inspectors?
There is a point where further explanation of a common sense deduction needs no further explanation. That person either gets it or he never will.
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How about this:
You tell me to be afraid of someone because he is going to throw a pot of boiling water on me. I ask you, "Where's the pot, and where's the water?" You say you don't know. How scared should I be?

Posturing. Spies.

I'll repeat a point here, maybe you'll get it.
Suppose, in 2002, Saddam Hussein had lots of Sarin, VX, Anthrax and so one. Could he use them to attack the United States? No. Could he use them to attack his neighbors? Sure, and he would succeed in uniting the rest of the world against him to remove him once and for all. Could he have used them against the Kurds or Shia, sure and with the same consequences.
So even IF he had chemical and biological weapons, it would not be worth our while to invade Iraq for that reason.
While on the topic of logic, what would be the rationale behind making and stockpiling weapons that had a shelf life measured in months?
--
FF

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Fred the Red Shirt wrote:

A simile more to the point: He tells you that someone is going to spray poison gas on you. This someone has sprayed poison gas on his family and his neighbors before, that fact is undisputed. This someone is known to have poison gas in his possession. This someone has declared publicly that he will use poison gas on you.
You ask "where's the gas", He says "I don't know". Should you be unconcerned because he doesn't know exactly where this person has his poison gas?
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