chasing saddam's weapons
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photo of inspectorsJoin the Discussion:  Eight months into the search, the U.S. has still not found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. What are your thoughts? Would the failure to find WMD invalidate the case for going to war?
 

Dear FRONTLINE,

At first I was interested in the nature and topic of the show, then it turned into an obvious one sided opinionated ctitical forum on the Bush administration's management of the War in Iraq and the reasons for being there.

Look, the world is now a safer place and this regime removal needed to be done. What would the Iraq government be doing today without interaction on the part of a superpower such as the us? Spare me the emotional rhetoric of you lead correspondent, typical of the opinions and broadcasting style of this network.

Mike Johnston

Dear FRONTLINE,

Poor reporting-David Kay''s initial report was not fully reported - Oct,2003
" What have we found and what have we not found in the first 3 months of our work?

We have discovered dozens of WMD-related program activities and significant amounts of equipment that Iraq concealed from the United Nations during the inspections that began in late 2002. ...

A clandestine network of laboratories and safehouses within the Iraqi Intelligence Service that contained equipment subject to UN monitoring and suitable for continuing CBW research.


A prison laboratory complex, possibly used in human testing of BW agents, that Iraqi officials working to prepare for UN inspections were explicitly ordered not to declare to the UN.


Reference strains of biological organisms concealed in a scientist's home, one of which can be used to produce biological weapons.

Plans and advanced design work for new long-range missiles with ranges up to at least 1000 km - well beyond the 150 km range limit imposed by the UN. Missiles of a 1000 km range would have allowed Iraq to threaten targets through out the Middle East, including Ankara, Cairo, and Abu Dhabi.


Clandestine attempts between late-1999 and 2002 to obtain from North Korea technology related to 1,300 km range ballistic missiles --probably the No Dong -- 300 km range anti-ship cruise missiles, and other prohibited military equipment.
In addition to the discovery of extensive concealment efforts, we have been faced with a systematic sanitization of documentary and computer evidence in a wide range of offices, laboratories, and companies suspected of WMD work. The pattern of these efforts to erase evidence - hard drives destroyed, specific files burned, equipment cleaned of all traces of use - are ones of deliberate, rather than random, acts. "


stanley grossman MD
great neck, ny

FRONTLINE's editors respond:

The Kay report of October 2003 which the viewer cites is linked to in the "Links and Readings" section of this FRONTLINE web site. It is also discussed in some detail in the interviews with David Kay and Hans Blix which are published on the web site. And FRONTLINE's program dealt with several of the key things mentioned in the Kay report such as the destruction of computer files, the concealment of reference strains of biological organisms in a scientist's home, long-range missile development, etc.

Dear FRONTLINE,

Congratulations on an excellent, insightful investigative report. I learned a good deal from your show, and I have been studying this issue intensively for years. Thank you for a valuable public service.

Joseph Cirincione
Washington, DC

 

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posted january 22, 2004

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