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Tuesday, January 28, 2003

US Guilty of "Shocking Double Standards" -- from Bush's favorite arms inspector, Richard Butler
"The spectacle of the United States, armed with its weapons of mass destruction, acting without Security Council authority to invade a country in the heartland of Arabia and, if necessary, use its weapons of mass destruction to win that battle, is something that will so deeply violate any notion of fairness in this world that I strongly suspect it could set loose forces that we would deeply live to regret," [former U.N. arms inspector Richard] Butler said. -- from Reuters

This should be headline news on every paper. The Bushies and right-wing media have mercilessly attacked another former inspector, Scott Ritter, for his repeated statements that Iraq poses little threat because most of its weapons stockpiles were destroyed by 1998 and they have little chance to redevelop them since. But they have loudly repeated warnings from Butler, who has stated that he believes Iraq still has WMD's. Here is an example from Condoleeza Rice's op-ed piece in the NY Times last week:
Last week's finding by inspectors of 12 chemical warheads not included in Iraq's declaration was particularly troubling. In the past, Iraq has filled this type of warhead with sarin a deadly nerve agent used by Japanese terrorists in 1995 to kill 12 Tokyo subway passengers and sicken thousands of others. Richard Butler, the former chief United Nations arms inspector, estimates that if a larger type of warhead that Iraq has made and used in the past were filled with VX (an even deadlier nerve agent) and launched at a major city, it could kill up to one million people. Iraq has also failed to provide United Nations inspectors with documentation of its claim to have destroyed its VX stockpiles.

So Condi says, using Butler to support her argument, that if Iraq used larger shells than were found and filled them with a gas they don't seem to have and put them on rockets they haven't got, they could kill a million people. Butler basically replies that the US is perfectly capable of killing many times that number with existing weapons that could be targeted to any city in the world, and for it to engage in a devastating attack with either "conventional" or "mass destruction" weapons against a much weaker country, to enforce UN resolutions but without UN approval, is the height of hypocrisy. It is truly scary how easily our government was taken over by these maniacs and that no one seems to think that there is much of a chance of stopping them.