During his press conference today, Donald Rumsfeld fielded this exchange:
QUESTION: Mr. Secretary, there has been a lot made on Capitol Hill about these chemical weapons that were found and may be quite old. But do you a real concern of these weapons from Saddam’s past perhaps having an impact on U.S. troops who are on the ground in Iraq right now?
RUMSFELD : Certainly. What has been announced is accurate, that there have been hundreds of canisters or weapons of various types found that either currently have sarin in them or had sarin in them, and sarin is dangerous. And it’s dangerous to our forces, and it’s a concern.
So obviously, to the extent we can locate these and destroy them, it is important that we do so. And they are dangerous. Anyone — I’m sure General Casey or anyone else in that country would be concerned if
they got in the wrong hands.
They are weapons of mass destruction. They are harmful to human beings. And they have been found. And that had not been by Saddam Hussein, as he inaccurately alleged that he had reported all of his
weapons . And they are still being found and discovered.
It’s amusing to watch the pushback from the left after Santorum’s press conference yesterday. Beginning in mid-2003, the mantra began that Saddam had no WMDs–zip, zero, nadda. Or as Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada said as recently as last week, “There are two things that don’t exist in Iraq: cutting and running, and weapons of mass destruction.”
Now the latest version being fielded is that, well, Saddam had them, but they were old, outdated. pay them no mind.
Of Senator Kerry’s time in Vietnam, James Lileks once wrote, “The past was more malleable than you had ever expected.” But if anything, that’s even more true when it comes to Iraq than the Winter Soldier’s salad days. Just look at Al Gore in 1993, and today.
Update: Evangelical Outpost notes correctly:
Opposition to the war has nothing to do with the lack of WMDs. It never did. We could find a nuclear bomb in Uday Hussein