Hussein was provably involved in the anthrax attacks which followed 9-11. That means that George Bush had very few options unless you call letting somebody poison the US senate office building with anthrax and just skate an option, which is brain-dead. He could do what he did, which was try to take the high road, eliminate the Hussein regime, and try to construct a rational regime in Iraq both to prevent further attacks and to provide an example of rational government in the region, or he could do what I would have done, which would have been to level both Mecca and Medina, and ban the practice of I-slam not just in the US but throughout the world.
Most people would probably want to try what W. did first.
Oh, yeah, I know, you guys don't believe Hussein had anything to do with 9-11 or the anthrax attacks which followed...
The first case of anthrax after 9-11 (Bob Stevens) showed up about ten miles from where Mohammed Atta himself had been living, i.e. the short drive from Coral Springs to Boca Raton.
The last previous case of anthrax in a human in the United States prior to 9-11 had been about 30 years prior to that.
There are other coincidences. For instance, the wife of the editor of the sun (where Stevens worked) also had contact with the hijackers in that she rented them the place they stayed.
Atta and the hijackers flew planes out of an airport in the vicinity and asked about crop dusters on more than one occasion. Indeed, Atta sought a loan to try to buy and and modify a crop duster.
Atta and several of the hijackers in this group also sought medical aid just prior to 9/11 for skin lesions that the doctors who saw them now say looked like anthrax lesions.
Basically, you either believe in the laws of probability or you don't. Anybody claiming that all these things were coincidences is either totally in denial or does not believe in modern mathematics and probability theory.
While the anthrax in question originally came from a US strain, it isn't too surprising that Iraq might have that strain since that strain was mailed to laboratories around the world years earlier. That is, it wsa mailed out for the purpose of allowing other nations to develop medicines to cure it, not to make weapons out of it...
Nonetheless, it was highly sophisticated, and went through envelope paper as if it weren't even there; many thought it to be not only beyond the capabilities of Hussein but of anybody else on the planet as well including us. Nonetheless, later information showed Husseins programs to be capable of such feats:
In a major development, potentially as significant as the capture of Saddam Hussein, investigative journalist Richard Miniter says there is evidence to indicate Saddam’s anthrax program was capable of producing the kind of anthrax that hit America shortly after 9/11. Miniter, author of Losing bin Laden, told Accuracy in Media that during November he interviewed U.S. weapons inspector Dr. David Kay in Baghdad and that he was "absolutely shocked and astonished" at the sophistication of the Iraqi program.
Miniter said that Kay told him that, "the Iraqis had developed new techniques for drying and milling anthrax"techniques that were superior to anything the United States or the old Soviet Union had. That would make the former regime of Saddam Hussein the most sophisticated manufacturer of anthrax in the world." Miniter said there are "intriguing similarities" between the nature of the anthrax that could be produced by Saddam and what hit America after 9/11. The key similarity is that the anthrax is produced in such a way that "hangs in the air much longer than anthrax normally would" and is therefore more lethal.
Basically, the anthrax attack which followed 9/11 had Saddam Hussein's fingerprints all over it. It was particalized so finely it went right through envelop paper and yet was not weaponized (not hardened against antibiotics). It was basically a warning, saying as much as:
"Hey, fools, some of my friends just knocked your two towers down and if you try to do anything about it, this is what could happen. F*** you, and have a nice day!!"
There is no way an American who had had anything to do with that would not be behind bars by now. In fact the one American they originally suspected told investigators that if he'd had anything to do with that stuff, he would either have anthrax or have the antibodies from the preventive medicine in his blood and offered to take a blood test on the spot. That of course was unanswerable.
The basic American notion of a presumption of innocence is not meaningful or useful in cases like that of Saddam Hussein. Even the Japanese had the decency to have their own markings on their aircraft at Pearl Harbor; Nobody had to guess who did it. Saddam Hussein, on the other hand, is like the kid in school who was always standing around snickering when things went bad, but who could never be shown to have had a hand in anything directly. At some point, guys would start to kick that guy's ass periodically on general principles. Likewise, in the case of Saddam Hussein, the reasonable assumption is that he's guilty unless he somehow or other manages to prove himself innocent and, obviously, that did not happen.
At the time, the US military was in such disarray from the eight years of the Clinton regime that there was nothing we could do about it. Even such basic items as machinegun barrels, which we should have warehouses full of, were simply not there. Nonetheless, nobody should think they would get away with such a thing and, apparently, Hussein and his baathists didn't.
Bob Woodward's book "Bush at War" documents some of this:
'Cheney?s chief of staff, Scooter Libby, quickly questions the wisdom of mentioning state sponsorship. Tenet, sensitive to the politics of Capitol Hill and the news media, terminates any discussion of state sponsorship
with the clear statement:
"I'm not going to talk about a state sponsor."
'Vice President Cheney further drives the point home:
"It's good that we don't, because we're not ready to do anything about it."
I mean, we didn't even have fricking machinegun barrels anymore. A friend of mine called up several barrelmakers about a barrel for a target rifle in the early spring of 02 and was told they were working 24/7 making machinegun barrels and didn't have time for any sort of civiliam firearm business.
A country with any sort of a military at all has to have warehouses full of that sort of thing and we had ******* none. We basically needed to go into Iraq the day after 9-11 and we were not able to due to the state Slick KKKlinton had left the military in, it took two years of building.
In the case of nuclear weaponry there appears to have been a three-way deal between Saddam Hussein, North Korea, and Libya in which raw materials from NK ended up in Libya to be transmogrified into missiles pointed at Europe and America by Saddam Hussein's technical people and with Iraqi financial backing (your oil-for-terrorism dollars at work), while Kofi Annan and his highly intelligent and efficient staff kept the west believing that their interests were being protected:
Muammar Khadaffi has since given the **** up and renounced the whole business. That sort of thing is one of the benefits of having our government back under adult supervision since 2001.
The Czech government is sticking with its story of Mohammed Atta having met with one of Saddam Hussein's top spies prior to 9-11 and there are even pictures of the two together on the internet now:
Then again as I mentioned, there's the question of the anthrax attack which followed 9-11. Saddam Hussein's the only person on this planet who ever had that kind of weaponized anthraxs powder.
Moreover it does not take hundreds of tons of anthrax powder to create havoc.
The sum total which was used was a few teaspoons full. In other words, a lifetime supply of that sort of thing for a guy like Saddam Hussein could easily amount to a hundred pounds worth, and I guarantee that I could hide that in a country the size of Iraq so that it would not be found.
The question of whether or not Hussein had 1000 tons of anthrax powder is simply the wrong question. The right questions are, did the guy have the motive, the technical resources, the financial wherewithal, the facilities, and the intel apparatus to play that sort of game, and the answers to all of those questions are obvious.