Patterico's Pontifications

6/6/2010

Tracing Iraq’s WMDs

Filed under: Government,Terrorism,War — DRJ @ 12:54 pm



[Guest post by DRJ]

One of the side effects of President Obama’s nomination of General James Clapper to be his Director of National Intelligence is that it has revived discussion of whether Saddam Hussein had Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMDs). Clapper reportedly believes he did, and PJ Media’s Ryan Mauro reviews evidence that indicates Saddam’s WMDs went to Syria. This section of Mauro’s report both interests and disappoints me:

“I also asked [the Iraq Survey Group’s head WMD investigator Charles] Duelfer if he was aware of the intelligence provided by the Ukrainians and other sources that the Russians were in Iraq helping to cleanse the country shortly before the invasion. His facial expressions before I even finished the question showed he genuinely had never even heard of this.

As explained in detail in Ken Timmerman’s book Shadow Warriors, high-level meetings were held on February 10-12, 2004, involving officials from the U.S., the UK, and Ukraine. Among the attendees were Deputy Undersecretary of Defense John A. Shaw, the head of MI6, and the head of Ukrainian intelligence, Ihor Smeshko. The Ukrainians provided all the details of the Russian effort, including the dates and locations of meetings to plan the intervention and even the names of the Russian Spetsnaz officers involved. Shaw also worked with a British source that ran an intelligence network in the region and provided substantiation and additional details.

The former head of Romanian intelligence during the Cold War, Ion Pacepa, has provided supporting testimony. He says that he had personal knowledge of a Soviet plan called “Operation Sarindar” where the Russians would cleanse a rogue state ally of any traces of illicit activity if threatened with Western attack. The plan’s purpose was to deny the West of any evidence incriminating Russia or its ally. The presence of Russian advisors in Iraq shortly before the invasion, some of whom received medals from Saddam Hussein, is a strong indication that this plan was followed.

Dave Gaubatz, who was the first civilian federal agent deployed to Iraq, told me that he saw intelligence that “suggested that some WMD had been moved to Syria with the help of Russian intelligence.” Iraqis personally confirmed to him that there was a Russian presence before the American soldiers arrived.

Amazingly, Duelfer seems to have never been informed of this intelligence. “This does not mean … that it was not passed on to ISG [Iraq Survey Group],” he said to me later. The fact that the head of the WMD search was never even made aware of this indicates something went seriously wrong. In Timmerman’s book, Shaw says that Smeshko complained about the CIA’s station chief in Kiev not being cooperative. Timmerman researched the station and chief and found that he was very close with other people in the intelligence community who were doing their best to fight Bush administration policies.”

If this is true, shame on the so-called intelligence community.

H/T Red County Pete.

— DRJ

10 Responses to “Tracing Iraq’s WMDs”

  1. I don’t know whehter to believe this or not. If WMDs were in Iraq, then why would the Bush administration not make this information public and exonerate themselves of the charge of irresponsibility?

    JEA (46415a)

  2. Something smells a little fishy here. There were multiple occasions that mention was made of Russian convoys to Syria in the weeks leading up to the invasion, along with speculation that moving WMDs was the primary reason for them.

    After the Dems sensed political advantage could be had if they acted as if they’d never thought that Saddam had these weapons and all of the hysterical, leftwing blather generated by the enemies of America drowned out common sense and all reasoned debate, why is there surprise that likely scenarios would never see the light of day?

    God damn these delusional liberal quimbies.

    GeneralMalaise (749d6d)

  3. JEA, don’t act more clueless. The Bush administration decided for political reasons that its political opponents with the help of the MSM were disingenuously treating the whole WMD topic post-2003 – heck often outright lying about the intel and their own knowledge of it. The Bush people decided that they could not “win” the debate politically and did their best to avoid engaging in it.

    The Bush admin also decided, erroneously in my opinion, that they would not clean out the CIA of those who were undermining the Bush admin for political reasons.

    We’ve seen a lot of evidence of CIA efforts to undermine policy, both in terms of selective leaking and of formulating obviously false reports like the one that claimed that Iran had abandoned its nuclear weapons program.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  4. Just on the eve of OIF a fifty truck Russian convoy left Baghdad and environs. Indeed, it could have been stopped except our ‘good friend’ and ‘partner’ Turkey, refused to allow us to go into Iraq through the North, giving the former regime alot more time to dispose of questionable items.

    eaglewingz08 (326e65)

  5. None of this is new information, Russian defectors and members of Saddam’s Iraqi elite have confirmed that extensive WMD equipment, including the 3 tons of Nigerian “Yellow Cake” (Hello Joe Wilson) were moved by the Russian special forces just prior to the American invasion. It went by truck to Syria’s Bakka Valley and was hidden till there till it could be dispersed, much of it going to Iran.

    Comments 2,3, and 4 are on target.

    ropelight (c5514c)

  6. btw, today is the anniversary of D-day.

    Bush has become like Isreal on this. The facts don’t matter. not in the slightest. nothing he did could possibly be justified, regardless of the evidence. That is the attitude of the majority of the media.

    The fact is we had good cause to believe saddam had WMDs. it would be nice to show that he also actually had them, but a rational approach to national defense also requires us to recognize that once we rationally believe that, we have a right to act.

    But don’t hold your breath waiting for dems to admit that.

    A.W. (f97997)

  7. It was common knowledge that hundreds of tons of WMD were transfered during the runup to the war. The America hating Lame Stream Media covered it up and the left wingers suffering BDS to the point of confinement in an insane asylum ate up the propaganda.
    It’s common knowlege today that the O’Dumbo regime is impleminting laws daily that are written by avowed Marxist. Pigloshi, Reid and the democrats in congress are so ate up with hate for the American people they go along with every law written/proposed by Marxist George Soros. Democrats have sold out for the dollar and care nothing about their own families future, much less about the average citizens.

    Scrapiron (996c34)

  8. Intelligence agents who worked to undermine US policy ought to be tried for treason. It is despicable to think that information would be suppressed because it made a political opponent look good.

    I thought, once upon a time, that government and politics were supposed to be about discussing and debating issues and convincing others your ideas were better, and why. Instead, it isn’t much different than a bunch of the pettiest of 7th graders trying to maneuver between cliques.

    I still don’t understand how Bergler gets away with what he did as well as Plame/Wilson deflecting the heat they should have received onto others, with Libby taking the rap. I don’t know what Fitzgerald was doing.

    MD in Philly (5a98ff)

  9. All of that “Why the rush to war?” business was the Democrats, Daschle in particular, running interference to give Saddam, Russia and Syria the opportunity to move the WMD out of Iraq.

    Many Democrats became adamant that there were no WMD in Iraq very soon after the search began. There was no reason to go out on that limb unless you are conspiring with those in the know. If you want to know for certain what happened to the WMD, waterboard Tom Daschle.

    jcurtis (138cbe)

  10. The CIA is the most corrupt anti-American bunch of loser pansies what you can find if you don’t count the U.S. Senate.

    Our little country is not in good hands.

    happyfeet (682797)


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