Instapundit.com Instapundit.com

December 12, 2002

LOOKS LIKE EVIDENCE OF A SADDAM CONNECTION HERE, TO ME, ANYWAY:

The Bush administration has received a credible report that Islamic extremists affiliated with al Qaeda took possession of a chemical weapon in Iraq last month or late in October, according to two officials with firsthand knowledge of the report and its source. They said government analysts suspect that the transaction involved the nerve agent VX and that a courier managed to smuggle it overland through Turkey.

If the report proves true, the transaction marks two significant milestones. It would be the first known acquisition of a nonconventional weapon other than cyanide by al Qaeda or a member of its network. It also would be the most concrete evidence to support the charge, aired for months by President Bush and his advisers, that al Qaeda terrorists receive material assistance in Iraq. If advanced publicly by the White House, the report could be used to rebut Iraq's assertion in a 12,000-page declaration Saturday that it had destroyed its entire stock of chemical weapons.

Hmm. "If advanced publicly?" As opposed to giving the story to the Washington Post, that is.

UPDATE: By the way, here's a story from The Weekly Standard from last July on the Saddam al-Qaeda connection.