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Iraq WMD by Colin Powell

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Kay's Report Shows U.S. Was Right on Iraq

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Kay's unclassified statement to Congress on Iraq arms

By Colin L. Powell

Colin L. Powell is secretary of state. This is from The Washington Post.

October 8, 2003

The interim findings of David Kay and the Iraq Survey Group make two things abundantly clear: Saddam Hussein's Iraq was in material breach of its United Nations obligations before the Security Council passed Resolution 1441 last November, and Iraq went further into breach after the resolution was passed.

Kay's interim findings offer detailed evidence of Hussein's efforts to defy the international community to the last. The report describes a host of activities related to weapons of mass destruction that "should have been declared to the UN." It reaffirms that Iraq's forbidden programs spanned more than two decades, involving thousands of people and billions of dollars.

What the world knew last November about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction programs was enough to justify the threat of serious consequences under Resolution 1441. What we now know as a result of David Kay's efforts confirms that Hussein had every intention of continuing his work on banned weapons despite the UN inspectors, and that we and our coalition partners were right to eliminate the danger that his regime posed to the world.

Although Kay and his team have not yet discovered stocks of the weapons themselves, they will press on in the months ahead with their important and painstaking work. All indications are that they will uncover still more evidence of Hussein's dangerous designs.

Before the war, our intelligence had detected a calculated campaign to prevent any meaningful inspections. We knew that Iraqi officials, members of the ruling Baath Party and scientists had hidden prohibited items in their homes. Lo and behold, Kay and his team found strains of organisms concealed in a scientist's home, and they report that one of the strains could be used to produce biological agents.

Kay and his team also discovered documents and equipment in scientists' homes that would have been useful for resuming uranium enrichment efforts. Kay and his team have "discovered dozens of WMD-related program activities and significant amounts of equipment that Iraq concealed from the United Nations during the inspections that began in late 2002. The discovery ... has come about both through the admissions of Iraqi scientists and officials concerning information they deliberately withheld and through physical evidence of equipment and activities that the Iraq Survey Group has discovered that should have been declared to the UN."

The Kay Report also addresses the issue of suspected mobile biological agent laboratories: "Investigation into the origin of and intended use for the two trailers found in northern Iraq in April has yielded a number of explanations, including hydrogen, missile propellant and BW [biological warfare] production, but technical limitations would prevent any of these processes from being ideally suited to these trailers. That said, nothing ... rules out their potential use in BW production."

Kay and his team have found this: "A clandestine network of laboratories and safe houses within the Iraqi Intelligence Service that contained equipment subject to UN monitoring and suitable for continuing CBW [chemical-biological weapons] research." They also discovered "a prison laboratory complex, possibly used in human testing of BW agents, that Iraqi officials working to prepare for UN inspections were explicitly ordered not to declare to the UN."

The Kay Report also confirmed our prewar intelligence that indicated Iraq was developing missiles with ranges up to 1,000 kilometers. Similarly, Kay substantiated our reports that Iraq had tested an unmanned aerial vehicle to 500 kilometers, in violation of UN resolutions.

What's more, he and his team found that elaborate efforts to shield illicit programs from inspection persisted even after the collapse of Hussein's regime. Key evidence was deliberately eliminated or dispersed during the postwar period. In a wide range of offices, laboratories and companies suspected of developing weapons of mass destruction, computer hard drives were destroyed, files were burned and equipment was cleansed of all traces of use.

One year ago, when President George W. Bush brought his concerns about Iraq to the United Nations, he made it plain that his principal concern in a post-Sept. 11 world was not just that a rogue regime such as Saddam Hussein's had WMD programs, but that such horrific weapons could find their way out of Iraq into the arms of terrorists who would have even fewer compunctions about using them against innocent people across the globe.

This was an evil regime, lethal to its own people, in deepening material breach of its Security Council obligations, and a threat to international peace and security. Hussein would have stopped at nothing until something stopped him. It's a good thing that we did.

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Well, so they found the leftovers of a former WMD program. Big deal. The most realistic assertion I've heard is that Saddam destroyed and abandoned his WMD program way before 9/11. That is what Iraqi scientists are saying. And they have no reason to lie because Saddam is no longer in power.

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