February 7, 2003

Editorial

Secretary of State Shoots Blanks At U.N.

The long awaited presentation before the 15 members of the United Na-tions Council, by Secretary of State Colin Powell, that he had evidence “irrefutable and undeniable” that Saddam Hussein was concealing weapons of mass destruction i.e. nuclear, biological and/or chemical, was delivered Wednesday morning, February 5, 2003 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City.

President George Bush had consistently stated that the Secretary of State Colin Powell would support with “irrefutable and undeniable” evidence that his calls for launching an all out attack, on the nation of Iraq, would be supported by the evidence that Hussein was concealing weapons of mass destruction.

The Secretary of State, much to the surprise of all those who had respected his military acumen, presented an incredible laundry list of supposed intelligence data in support of President Bush’s efforts to justify a military attack against the sovereign nation of Iraq. The majority of the material he presented was unworthy of him. It is frightening to believe that former General Colin Powell would recommend placing his forces at risk with the weak, unsupportable, evidence that he presented for launching a full-scale military attack on another country. It is the responsibility of a military leader to give his best assessment of the military situation and not indulges in fanciful political justifications presented by the civilian leadership.

The presentation by Secretary Powell was a rehash of all the allegations made by the Secretary of Defense and by the inner circle surrounding the President. Not one iota of proof was shown at the presentation, made before the 15 member Council members. These members included the Nations of China, France, Germany, England, and the United States. They alone had veto power over what actions the U.N. will or will not take to receive the imprimatur of the United Nations.

What was presented to the members of the United Nations?

 Fuzzy pictures of buildings, trucks and a lot of sand. Proving nothing. (With our spy satellites able to pinpoint a nickel on the ground from outer space was that the best intelligence photography they have?)

 Assumptions of what they think Saddam is planning with missiles, CBG weapons, rockets etc. (Where are the copies of their war plans?)

 Information that a number of trucks were moving around some buildings! (Hundreds of camels, mules, cars, taxis, and trucks are moving all over the country. Is this a reason to attack?)

 Assumptions that Iraq is developing missiles. (So is every other nation in the world. Does this mean they can fire them all the way to the U.S.? These folks couldn’t hit the adjoining countries worth a darn during Desert Storm!)

 Phone conversations between lower ranking officers of the Iraq Army discussing where to hide vehicles. (So, this is a reason to go to war?)

 Citations from informants stating Saddam is hiding biological weapons in western Iraq. Yet no evidence was shown to prove this. (Once again: where is the smoking gun?)

 Presented video that purported to show 15 ammunition bunkers in the desert. (Quick, send the inspectors to see if they are for firing CBW rounds! If so destroy them)

It is incredible that we would send one of our supposed top Generals to the United Nations and have him present this farcical evidence as justification to wage war. The Council members were not impressed. Only Britain and the United States, voiced support for the notion of attacking Iraq. China, Russia, and France said that the work of the weapon inspectors should continue. Germany stated “WE MUST CONTINUE TO SEEK A PEACEFUL SOLUTION TO THE CRISIS.” Without majority support of the five member permanent council of the United Nations, the United States cannot start a war under the United Nations banner.

That President Bush cannot win the support of the major nations in the world is a strong signal that America has lost its way and is losing its position as a leader in the world of nations. We are losing our position as a respected, humanitarian, responsible Democratic nation that values freedom, justice and equality for all.

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