Sunday, August 29, 2010

An Anniversary of Sorts -- Dick Cheney and Iraq

In a speech to the Nashville convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, August 26, 2002, Vice President Dick Cheney says Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction.

“Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction. There is no doubt that he is amassing them to use against our friends, against our allies, and against us.… What he wants is time, and more time to husband his resources to invest in his ongoing chemical and biological weapons program, and to gain possession of nuclear weapons.… Deliverable weapons of mass destruction in the hands of a terror network, or a murderous dictator, or the two working together constitutes as grave a threat as can be imagined. The risks of inaction are far greater than the risk of action.… The Iraqi regime has in fact been very busy enhancing its capabilities in the field of chemical and biological agents, and they continue to pursue the nuclear program they began so many years ago.”

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Senior members of the Bush administration made repeated claims that Iraq possessed chemical, biological and nuclear weapons of mass destruction and/or WMD programs, and was a grave and imminent threat to the security of the United States and the world.

Following the invasion of Iraq in March 2003, many months of exhaustive investigations found no stockpiles of chemical, biological or nuclear weapons.  No evidence of active WMD programs was found.

Iraq’s nuclear program ended in 1991 following the first Gulf War, and was never reconstituted.  Iraq destroyed its chemical weapons stockpile in 1991.  Its biological weapons were destroyed in 1991 and 1992.  Through 1998, U.N. weapons inspectors repeatedly checked suspected facilities, and had installed cameras to monitor activity at these sites.

Eight years after Vice President Dick Cheney's speech to the VFW, we are told the "combat mission" in Iraq is over, but troops will remain. We've spent untold billions of dollars and expended the lives of brave men and women, based on lies. And we'll spend more, and lose more lives, and we can only hope that Iraq after we're gone will be better off than before we came to "liberate" its people. 

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