Weapons of mass destruction

Pre war: Tony Blair, 24 September 2002, address to House of Commons: "Iraq has chemical and biological weapons,...Saddam has continued to produce them...he has existing and active military plans for the use of chemical and biological weapons, which could be activated in 45 minutes." Post war: Donald Rumsfeld, US Defence Secretary, 17 April 2003, press briefing: "I don't think we'll discover anything myself...The inspectors didn't find anything and I doubt we will."

So where are the weapons of mass destruction which they alleged Saddam was preparing to use for a pre-emptive strike against the West? They are nowhere to be found and as the above statements make clear the US doesn't expect to find any. This was imperialism's justification for war. Now Bush and Blair have launched investigations into how their respective intelligence services "got it so wrong". It is becoming clear that the US and British governments took hearsay, rumours and suspect intelligence reports and passed them off has hard facts to justify the war.

"Evidence" presented to the UN by Colin Powell was based on information received from Iraqi defectors associated with Ahmed Chalabi, the criminal the US hope to impose as their new puppet leader of Iraq.

Robin Cook former British Foreign Secretary stated: "The war was sold on the basis of what was described as a pre-emptive strike - hit Saddam before he hits us. It is now clear that Saddam did not have anything with which to hit us in the first place".

A joint hearing of the Senate Armed Services and Intelligence Committees will examine whether the substance of the information gathered by the CIA was accurate. This is an attempt by the US administration to get Bush, Powell, Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz off the hook by trying to put the blame on to the CIA. According to a US official quoted in the Financial Times 4 June 2003, the US government doctored and distorted the information that they received and tailored it to their needs for Colin Powell's infamous speech to the UN: "it is clear to me that we had people in the administration with an agenda...We spent the entire time throwing things away, some of which has been previously used in public statements. There were 45 to 50 pages that we pared down to maybe 18." The original dossier came from Vice President Dick Cheney's office.

According to the Financial Times "Some also felt it [the dossier] had been tailored to fit the views of the hawks in administration who had long been pushing for war with Iraq".The truth is clear. Bush and Blair lied about Saddam having WMD in order to justify the war and to try and cover up their real war aims, the seizure of Iraq's huge oil reserves and the establishment of a new imperialist colonial base in the Middle East.

But it is not only Bush and Blair who have questions to answer. So do the leaders of the other governments who supported the war, like Bertie Ahern. On the 28 May 2003, Joe Higgins, Socialist Party TD questioned Ahern in the Dail on his acceptance of the WMD evidence. "Donald Rumsfeld admitted yesterday that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq....On 20 March last the Taoiseach moved a motion in the House condemning the refusal of the government of Iraq to...disarm under numerous resolutions...that motion [was] moved on foot of a falsehood perpetrated by the US administration, which the Taoiseach accepted. On foot of that falsehood, the Taoiseach facilitated the invasion of Iraq through the use of Shannon Airport."

Bush and Blair's lie about invading Iraq to establish a democratic government is also being exposed just like their lie about WMD. US imperialism is in the process of attempting to impose a stooge Iraqi government completely loyal to its real war aim - the plunder of Iraq's oil. A war of resistance by the Iraqi people against the US occupation has already begun, alongside and interconnected with an upsurge in support for "political Islam", and the potential for civil wars to break out between different ethnic and religious groups. Bush and Blair and their lackeys like Ahern who assisted the war effort have created a new nightmare for the Iraqi people. The people of Iraq have and will continue to pay a horrific price in human suffering for many years to come because of the actions of these war criminals.

Editors: STEPHEN BOYD - P.O. Box 3434, Dublin 8 Tel/Fax (01) 6772592 e-mail: info@socialistparty.net

Peter Hadden - 36 Victoria Sq. Belfast BT1 4DQ Tel: (02890) 232962 Fax (02890) 311778, e-mail: socialist@belfastsp.freeserve.co.uk
For other articles from Socialist Voice visit the Paper files or the War articles in the sitemap.
To see what the Socialist Party stands for visit our main site