Prior to 9/11, what did these two have in common besides a penchant for terrorizing civilian populations? A deeply shared loathing of the United States and Israel. When reviewing the various international news outlets’ reports/editorials of the recent US Senate committee’s report that dismisses any connection between Saddam Hussein and Al-Qaida before 9/11, please keep in mind the latter of the two commonalities mentioned.
The headlines in today’s news are filled with innuendos and accusations that place US president Bush in the worst possible light, portraying the US Senate report as “irrefutable proof ” of Bush’s main premise (Saddam/Osama axis) to have been false. Backing up a bit, Bush’s main reason to drive Saddam out of power, was the enforcement UNSCR 1441, not because of any link between Al-Qaida and Iraq, something that the media is all to much in a hurry to forget.
Big Lizards has an interesting post on the very same subject, and it deserves some consideration. Dafydd posts a comment from President Bush’s press secretary, Tony Snow:
“The White House spokesman, Tony Snow, told The Associated Press there was “nothing new” in the report, and that members of both political parties had agreed before the Iraq war that Saddam Hussein was a threat to the United States. In 2002 and 2003, members of both parties got a good look at the intelligence we had, and they came to the very same conclusions about what was going on,”
This is exactly the point. All who had access to the same intelligence believed that Saddam was a threat to US security. After pouring through just a tiny portion of intelligence gathered in the aftermath of Operation Iraqi Freedom, a larger picture emerges of an Iraq which seems focused on frustrating UN attempts on securing access to highly classified areas (to see if Iraq was indeed complying with prior UNSC resolutions), the circumvention of UN sanctions, and trying to get them soon lifted through the use of bribery and lucrative oil deals.
There is ample evidence available that points strongly to Saddam actively engaged with the funding of al-Qaida affiliated groups, such as Abu Sayyiff terror group in the Philipines. That Saddam mistrusted Osama Bin Laden and Al-Zarqawi is irrelevant. Since when does mistrusting a potential enemy keep one side from temporarily reaching a mutual contract with the other? History is loaded with examples of such agreements. Reading about of the US senate committees’ report in todays news, one could conclude that Stalin was never allied with the Western Allies against Hitler’s Nazi Germany. KGS
Paul Mirengoff at Powerline delivers a good analysis on the 100 page Senate Intelligence Committee’s report, and promises more in the very near future. With top Democrats such as John Rockefeller ( the lead Democrat on the Intelligence Committee) declaring such nonsense that Iraq would be better off under Saddam Hussein, explains why the report appears to skew the historic record. Top Dems and a few Republicans seem to care more for their current postions than for the truth, as they seek to distance themselves from their original understanding of the intelligence on Iraq, as well as their voting records.