Let the debunking begin! Bloggers have scurried to the scene of the crime and found both the New York Times and CBS guilty of extreme political and journalistic malfeasance.
Here’s the summary: CBS fell for a shabby story, retailed by United Nations employees bent on (a) undermining the Bush administration and perhaps (b) counting on John Kerry to help cover up the oil for food scandal. The tall tale: That the president averted his eyes from the theft of 380 tons of potentially ruinous explosive powder. It appears the powder itself was insufficient to produce detonations of note; it was a sort of precursor – and could not achieve its potential without first being mixed with binders and other stuff.
Things to note:
U.N. inspectors repeatedly had been urged to declare the stuff a menace, and had refused to do so. Arms inspector Charles Duelfer dropped the, um, bombshell in an interview with the New York Sun.
John Kerry’s position on the issue – that the president should have issued orders to secure the site and the stuff – not only seems comically inept (no commander-in-chief worth his salt micromanages in this manner), but also contradicts his stated position that Saddam had no weapons of mass destruction. The U.N. eventually came to the conclusion that the compounds in question could be used to detonate nuclear devices.
Multiple source reports, including Dana Lewis of Fox News, indicate that troops entering al QaQaa did not find the large trove of chemicals, which means the baddies trucked it away before the U.S. got there, and probably before Operation Iraqi Freedom commenced. The always indispensable Belmont Club has multiple takes, as does this equally terrific blog.
Words of Wisdom
We learn, at the last, to look to our brothers as aliens, men with whom we share a city, but not community; men bound to us in common dwelling, but not in common effort. We learn to share only a common fear, only a common desire to retreat from each other, only a common impulse to meet disagreement with force. For all this, there are no final answers.
Bobby Kennedy spoke those words in April 5, 1968 before the Cleveland City Club on the day after Martin Luther King, Jr. was killed: We learned to share only common fear - that could be the campaign agenda of the Kerry-Edwards team. Today’s bitter politics are quickly becoming dangerous for the nation as a whole. Kerry is doing what he does best: second-guessing. The U.S. let bad guys stroll away with munitions capable of destroying the world. Bush is a screw-up. A word of advice: shut up, John.
Today on the show, Arnold Schwarzenegger stopped by. He talked about seeking to strike a different national tone We’ve got to respect one another, he said. “My wife and mother-in-law is voting for Kerry, but we sit around dinner and have civilized conversation. […] Our political parties are where I see the hated. We're all Americans with different opinions, let's not turn people into hating each other."
That’s it for today … stay tuned for more.
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