It’s official. There were WMD’s in Iraq. Not fully developed WMD’s, but the infrastructure, scientists, and supplies available waiting for sanctions to be lifted and voila, Saddam back to normal.
The LATimes reports:
The last major remnant of Saddam Hussein’s nuclear program — a huge stockpile of concentrated natural uranium — reached this Canadian port Saturday, completing a secret U.S. operation that included an airlift from Baghdad and a voyage across two oceans.
The removal of about 550 tons of “yellowcake” — the seed material for high-grade nuclear enrichment — was a significant step toward closing the books on Hussein’s nuclear legacy.
The Newsweek story has even more details.
It seems the presence of the yellow cake, which was not concentrated enough to make a bomb but could be used to make a “dirty bomb” was known to the US government and US Army and even the UN, but it’s presence was not publicized for fear that it would be looted. And there was quite a bit of the stuff lying around: 550 metric tons of it. It is now in Canada, sold to a company that will concentrate it for use in civilian nuclear reactors.
There will have to be a huge environmental cleanup of the storage area, as mentioned in the Newsweek AP story.
But in a year when politics rules, it is interesting to note that the Bush administration kept the presence of this site secret from the general public while taking hysterical criticism from the same far left groups who birthed the Obama campaign.
So the irony is that, to keep the presence secret from local thugs associated with terrorists until the huge amount of partially enriched uranium could be removed, the anti war left was allowed to repeat it’s lies that it didn’t exist at all.
And yes, the Newsweek/AP story does admit:
The yellowcake issue also is one of the many troubling footnotes of the war for Washington.
A CIA officer, Valerie Plame, claimed her identity was leaked to journalists to retaliate against her husband, former Ambassador Joe Wilson, who wrote that he had found no evidence to support assertions that Iraq tried to buy additional yellowcake from Niger.
Plame, was supposed to be an expert in nuclear proliferation, undoubtably knew that the uranium was there, yet allowed her husband to undermine the Bush administration case that Iraq was buying “yellow cake”, as if it didn’t exist. Now it turns out that maybe the Niger connection was untrue, but the Wilson editorial suggesting that no enriched uranium was available to Saddam was also untrue to the point of 550 tons. Did Ms. Plame know about these weapons when her husband insisted that they didn’t exist?
Perhaps someone in the press corps will now ask Ms. Plame and spouse some embarassing questions if the CIA was clueless, or if either she or the CIA was meddling in politics.
Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. She writes about human rights in Africa at Makaipa blogÂ