1
   

Weapons of mass . . . something

 
 
Adrian
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jul, 2004 05:36 pm
OK Joe, but remember that I have already stated I think the criteria are ridiculous.

I believe that in 1998 Pakistan was not under the rule of a dictator.

I believe that martial law was not declared until 1999.

Fair 'nuff?
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jul, 2004 08:47 pm
Adrian wrote:
OK Joe, but remember that I have already stated I think the criteria are ridiculous.

I believe that in 1998 Pakistan was not under the rule of a dictator.

I believe that martial law was not declared until 1999.

Fair 'nuff?

General Zia was the military dictator of Pakistan from 1977 to 1988. A highlight of his brutal reign came in 1979 with the judicial murder of his predecessor, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto (the man responsible for initiating Pakistan's nuclear weapons program). Zia continued pursuing an "Islamic bomb," despite international sanctions intended to deprive Pakistan of the necessary means to produce an atomic weapon.

Even after the restoration of representative democracy in the aftermath of Zia's death in 1988, the military remained active in Pakistani politics. The current dictator, General Pervez Mushareff seized power in 1999 and has never followed through on his pledge to hold elections and step aside in favor of a parliamentary regime.

Now, you might argue that Pakistan was nominally democratic at the time that it actually tested its nuclear weapon in 1998. But, going by Brandon's list, this is largely unimportant. After all, the list provides a reason for invading Iraq, and no one would suggest that Iraq has ever actually produced a nuclear weapon. The more important time period, then, is the period leading up to the development of nuclear weaponry (that would be consistent with point 1 of the list). Thus, the focus should be on the period of time during which Pakistan was actively involved in pursuing nuclear capability -- roughly from 1974 to 1998. And for much of that period Pakistan was ruled by an "evil" dictator.

Furthermore, there doesn't really seem to be a statute of limitations attached to Brandon's list. Point 3, for instance ("the country has attempted to annex neighbors") apparently could justify an invasion in of Iraq in 2003, even though Iraq's last attempt to annex a neighbor had occurred 12 years earlier. So these criteria do not need to be simultaneously true, but merely true at some point, either now or in the past.
0 Replies
 
Adrian
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jul, 2004 09:18 pm
Embarrassed

Ah well, it was worth a try.

I was hoping that I could slide through this one without having to mention Zia.

Anyway, now that I can't, could you tell me Joe what "great evil" he ever demonstrated? (Remember not my/your criteria)
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jul, 2004 09:43 pm
In any event, Joe, an imaginative administration could consider that the on-going conflict with India over Kashmir qualify as attempting to annex a neighbor . . .


Naw, our government would never cobble together flimsy pretexts for implementing gradiose schemes to take and hold a powerful base in the Muslim world . . . would they?
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2004 04:22 am
I dont think Zia can ever be considered Saddams equal in terms of "great evil", so purely in terms of Brandon's criteria, Pakistan wouldnt apply as much ...

which is kind of ironic, considering that the kind of controlled, corrupt anarchy posed by Pakistani dictatorship poses an arguably greater danger in terms of would-be terrorists hiding there and smuggling WMD parts and resources through and from the country than did the absolutist Saddam state ...

In fact, in general, though anarchy might be preferable to dictatorship in terms of democratizing the Middle East, it is most probably not in terms of preventing the apocalyptic scenario Brandon has sketched ... how big is the chance of disgruntled or unemployed Iraqi scientists selling or providing WMD secrets to insurgents or terrorists in today's Iraq chaos - compared to how likely it was when all was controlled by a dictator whose first priority was strategic self-preservation?
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2004 08:01 am
Adrian wrote:
Embarrassed

Ah well, it was worth a try.

I was hoping that I could slide through this one without having to mention Zia.

Nope, sorry. Not on Brandon's terms you can't.

Adrian wrote:
Anyway, now that I can't, could you tell me Joe what "great evil" he ever demonstrated? (Remember not my/your criteria)

Well, he overthrew the established government, suppressed dissent and shuttered the nation's representative institutions, killed his predecessor, imposed martial law, arrested and imprisoned his political opponents -- all the things that you would expect from a military dictator. Of course, this doesn't really make him uniquely evil, just run-of-the-mill evil.

I'm not sure how much "evilness" Brandon would require of a dictator in order to make the list, but it would, I think, be hard to argue that "ordinarily evil" dictators with nuclear weapons programs pose significantly less of a threat than "extraordinarily evil" dictators.
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 Jul, 2004 01:22 am
Report: Australian Intelligence Failed Over Iraq

Quote:
CANBERRA, Australia (Reuters) - Australian intelligence relied on thin and ambiguous information for its assessment of the threat of weapons of mass destruction in pre-war Iraq, an independent report found Thursday.

"There has been a failure of intelligence on Iraq WMD. Intelligence was thin, ambiguous and incomplete," former intelligence chief Philip Flood said in a report which mirrors similar intelligence inquiries in the United States and Britain.

The report also found that Australian agencies should have known more about the "terrorist capabilities and intentions" of Asian Islamic militant group Jemaah Islamiah (JI) prior to the 2002 Bali bombings which killed 202 people, 88 of them Australian.

The al-Qaeda-linked JI has been held responsible for the Bali nightclub bombings.

"The inquiry has seen nothing to indicate that any Australian agency ... had any specific intelligence warning of the attack in Bali," Flood said in his report.

"The failure to appreciate the serious nature of the threat posed by JI was widespread outside Australia's intelligence agencies and in Indonesia itself," he said.

Prime Minister John Howard, a staunch U.S. ally, sent around 2,000 military personnel to the U.S.-led war in Iraq, citing at the time the need to prevent Iraq's weapons of mass destruction falling into the hands of terror groups.

Howard has since said the Iraq war was justified despite the failure to find WMD, arguing the Iraqi people were better off after the removal of Saddam Hussein.


source


well, which country is the next what admit that they failed?
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Sun 25 Jul, 2004 01:30 am
Butler 'wrong' on Iraq uranium link

Quote:
A leading nuclear expert has pointed out a technical error in the Butler report on WMD intelligence in Iraq, and criticised the committee's finding that intelligence on Saddam Hussein seeking uranium from Africa was "credible".

The Butler report demolished the most controversial allegation in the Government's September 2002 WMD dossier - that Iraq could deploy chemical or biological weapons in 45 minutes - but observers were surprised that the uranium claim passed scrutiny.

American investigators have dismissed the suggestion that Iraq was seeking uranium from the west African state of Niger in a quest for nuclear weapons, because it was based on forged documents. It was also inherently implausible, they added, since Iraq had 550 tons of "yellowcake" - uranium which has undergone the first stage of processing. But the Butler committee accepted the Government's contention that it had separate intelligence, which has never been disclosed, to support the claim.

Norman Dombey, retired professor of theoretical physics at Sussex University, said yesterday that the Butler report wrongly described Iraq's stocks of uranium as unprocessed. But Professor Dombey, credited with pointing out numerous flaws in the story of an Iraqi defector whose nuclear claims were widely circulated in the US during the 1990s, was more critical of the committee's intelligence findings on the Niger issue. "The Butler report says the claim was credible because an Iraqi diplomat visited Niger in 1999, and almost three-quarters of Niger's exports were uranium. But this is irrelevant, since France controls Niger's uranium mines," he said


source
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Sat 21 Aug, 2004 02:47 am
Majority of Americans still believe Iraq had WMDs, al-Qaida links: poll

Quote:
More than one-half of Americans -54 per cent -continue to believe Iraq had weapons of mass destruction or a program to develop them before the United States invaded last year, a poll released Friday indicated.

Evidence of such weapons has not been found.

One-half believe Iraq was either closely linked with al-Qaida before the war (35 per cent) or was directly involved in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States (15 per cent).

The poll by the Program on International Policy Attitudes at the University of Maryland found the numbers on both questions have dropped in the face of evidence both pre-war claims may have been false.

President George W. Bush consistently equates the war against terrorism with the war in Iraq, though he has replaced his claims Iraq had weapons of mass destruction with claims the country had the "capability" of building such weapons.

Both the Sept. 11 commission and the U.S. Senate intelligence committee have raised doubts about pre-war claims by the Bush administration.

Seven in 10 in the poll said they believe the United States went to war in Iraq based on false assumptions. A similar number said the war in Iraq has given the United States a worse image in the world.

A majority, 55 per cent, said they don't think the war in Iraq will result in greater peace and stability in the Mideast. In various polls, people have been evenly split on whether the war in Iraq was the right or wrong thing to do -a sharp drop from last winter.

The poll of 733 adults was conducted by Knowledge Networks from Aug. 5-11 and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.


Link

Phaw, interesting news. This is hard for Kerry at the elections.
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Sun 22 Aug, 2004 02:50 am
Washington accused of ignoring nuclear terror threat


Quote:
The Bush administration insists that its top priority is keeping weapons of mass destruction out of the hands of terrorists. But in a withering new book, one of America's foremost nuclear weapons experts argues that the White House has been so heedless of the threat that nuclear armageddon in one or more US cities is now "more likely than not" over the next decade.

Graham Allison, a former defence official under both Republican and Democratic administrations and now a leading researcher at Harvard, describes the Bush administration as "reckless" for its failure to secure fissile materials around the world and its apparent lack of interest in preventing North Korea and Iran from becoming nuclear powers. In his book Nuclear Terrorism: The Ultimate Preventable Catastrophe, Mr Allison lays out a series of measures to minimise the risk that al-Qa'ida or another group could either build or buy a nuclear weapon and then smuggle it into the United States.

He demonstrates that the Bush White House, for all its bullish rhetoric, has taken none of them.

"No one observing the behaviour of the US government after 9/11 would note any significant changes in activity aimed at preventing terrorists from acquiring the world's most destructive technologies," he writes. At the same time, al-Qa'ida is known to have taken steps to obtain nuclear weaponry since 1992, and has publicly stated its ambition to kill four million Americans.

"On the current course," Mr Allison concludes, "nuclear terrorism is inevitable." The most likely scenario, according to security experts, is that al-Qa'ida or another group would buy or steal fissile material and then construct its own bomb, using science that has been in the public domain for 30 years. Hence the urgent need to secure the world's relatively restricted stockpiles of that fissile material - either highly enriched uranium or plutonium. However, a programme for securing nuclear materials in the former Soviet Union, pioneered by US Senators Sam Nunn and Richard Lugar, has been so poorly funded that it will take another 13 years to finish at the current pace. "The incandescent and incontestable fact is that in the two years after 9/11, fewer potential nuclear weapons' worth of highly enriched uranium and plutonium were secured than in the two years before 9/11," Mr Allison told The Independent on Sunday.

A further 43 countries have varying amounts of fissile material as by-products of their civilian nuclear power industries, but as things stand the US is only willing to take this off their hands if they pay for the privilege.

Mr Allison described the Bush administration's approach to North Korea and Iran as "paralysis" - offering neither carrots nor sticks to prevent those countries becoming full nuclear weapons states. If North Korea developed a full nuclear production line - carrying with it the distinct possibility of selling parts or technology to the highest bidder - it would be "the greatest failure of American diplomacy in all our history".

A nuclear North Korea would almost certainly induce Japan and South Korea to develop their own programmes. And the Bush administration is talking about new nuclear tests and the development of so-called "mini-nukes" and atomic bunker-buster bombs.

Mr Allison ascribed many of the White House's failures to the war in Iraq, which, he says, has diverted attention and eaten up resources in a country that had neither nuclear weapons nor a nuclear weapons programme.

But he also accused the White House of a failure of imagination, an odd combination of denial and fatalism."They don't get that this is a preventable catastrophe," he said. An effective "war on nuclear terrorism", Mr Allison argued, would cost around $5bn (£2.75bn) per year. "In a current budget that devotes more than $500bn to defence and the war in Iraq," he suggested, "a penny of every dollar for what Bush calls 'our highest priority' would not be excessive."


Link

Again a mistake, but also willfully from the Goverment.
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 10:58 pm
There it is,beside Iraq ,N-Korea and others :

Quote:
At large, material to make 15,000 nuclear bombs

Enough weapons-grade plutonium to make more than 15,000 nuclear bombs will be vulnerable to hijack by terrorists and rogue states as the result of a disarmament initiative.

An unprecedented shipment of 300lb of the material from the United States was last night heading towards the French port of Cherbourg on two British ships. The shipment is the first instalment of 68 tons of plutonium from US and Russian weapons stockpiles to be put on to the world's roads and seas at a time when terrorists are actively seeking the material.

The move severely undermines the war on terror and casts further doubt on the rationale advanced for the Iraq war by Tony Blair at last week's Labour conference - keeping weapons of mass destruction out of terrorist hands.

The Prime Minister has repeatedly insisted that al-Qa'ida and other terrorist groups will make nuclear bombs and explode them in Western cities if they can get hold of the material for them.

Last night, the Greenpeace boat Esperanza was stalking the shipment from the US nuclear weapons establishment at Los Alamos, the birthplace of the atomic bomb. Described as "the biggest ever shipment of weapons-grade plutonium" by the independent nuclear consultant John Large, it is being carried on the Pacific Teal and Pacific Pintail, owned by a company whose largest shareholder is British Nuclear Fuels.

BNFL refuses to disclose details of the security arrangements, but the two ships are believed to have crossed the Atlantic each armed only with a 30mm machine gun and guarded by 13 special atomic energy policemen. There were reports last night a French warship came out to escort them as they approached Cherbourg. The US governmentsaid it escorted them to the limit of its territorial waters with "a combination of Coast Guard cutters, boats, aircraft and other local law enforcement and naval assets". After the plutonium has landed, it will be taken 500 miles by road to Cadarache in Provence, to be made into nuclear fuel.

A series of studies by Mr Large, presented to the US authorities, have demonstrated gaping holes in the security arrangements. Early next year, the fuel - only slightly less vulnerable to hijack - will be transported back across the Atlantic to the Catawaba nuclear power plant in Charlotte, South Carolina.

US officials say the transatlantic trip is a "one-off", because there are plans to make the fuel in a new plant at home. But nuclear experts point out that - though this precise journey is unlikely to be repeated - it will just be the start. In September 2000, the US and Russia each agreed to eliminate 34 ton of weapons-grade plutonium and turn it into nuclear fuel. At least two tons will be taken from stockpiles each year, transported to fuel fabrication plants, turned into fuel and transported again to reactors.

Security experts are particularly worried about Russia, where plutonium is to be taken on journeys of up to 1,200 miles in its raw form, and up to 4,300 miles as fuel.

Last night, Dr Frank Barnaby, a former Aldermaston nuclear weapons specialist who became director of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, called the plans "an invitation to terrorists to go nuclear".

He says a group could easily make an atomic bomb from just four-and a-half pounds of the plutonium.



Source
0 Replies
 
rameses594
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 12:58 pm
We can not deny that at one time Saddam Hussein had WMDs, we know that for a fact. We also know that for 12 years the United Nations did nothing to ensure that Saddam Hussein got rid of his WMDs, and during that time he encouraged attacks on U.S. and British Planes in the No-Fly Zone. Continuing with facts we know that Russian President Vladmir Putin warned President Bush about Iraq shortly before the United States went in. Our intelligence showed that that Saddam Hussein had WMDs still. Putting all of this together the President made the right decision to invade Iraq. I for one, still believe there are WMDs in Iraq, Saddam had 12 years of getting very good at hiding them, and we haven't looked in every possible place in Iraq.
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 02:02 pm
We can't deny Saddam had WMDs because the US supplied it. What was your point, again?
0 Replies
 
rameses594
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 02:06 pm
First off, at one time we did help Saddam, not with WMDs but with convential weapons deals, I can not deny that it is a fact. It was Saddam who developed WMDs. My point is that we know he had them, we don't know where they went, they are probably still there.
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 02:38 pm
ramses, Please read this link. http://www.sundayherald.com/27572
If you still insist it was only "conventional" weapons, I'd be more than happy to provide more sources that you are dead wrong.
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Oct, 2004 11:08 pm
Rumsfeld admit:

Quote:
No evidence of al-Qaida-Iraq link and WMD



Link
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Oct, 2004 09:05 am
That's Rumfeld, now he says that his comments were 'misunderstood' .
0 Replies
 
 

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