This is still a bit fuzzy… Needs some better coverage by larger media outlets — if indeed this is true, it may lead to even larger finds of WMD in Iraq and a potential I told you so from the Bush administration and CIA. Of course there will be those convinced this was planted there by the CIA to save face. Let’s see if the story unfolds to something significant, or just a wet dream for the Republicans…
Hawaii Reporter: “On Wednesday, Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), quoting from a Pentagon report, announced that since 2003, over 500 weapons of mass destruction have been found in Iraq. According to Santorum, these sarin- and mustard-filled projectiles prove that “weapons of mass destruction are, in fact, in Iraq.” With news this important, one would expect wide-spread coverage, right? Wrong. The so-called main stream media is silent on this discovery, instead painting their own view of Iraq.
At the press conference, Santorum along with Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-MI) said, “It is essential for the American people to understand that these weapons are in Iraq. I will continue to advocate for the complete declassification of this report so we can more fully understand the complete WMD picture inside Iraq.”
Santorum noted that the six key findings from the Pentagon report are as follows:
* Since 2003 Coalition forces have recovered approximately 500 weapons munitions which contain degraded mustard or sarin nerve agent.
* Despite many efforts to locate and destroy Iraq’s pre-Gulf War chemical munitions, filled and unfilled pre-Gulf War chemical munitions are assessed to still exist.
* Pre-Gulf War Iraqi chemical weapons could be sold on the black market. Use of these weapons by terrorists or insurgent groups would have implications for Coalition forces in Iraq. The possibility of use outside Iraq cannot be ruled out.
* The most likely munitions remaining are sarin and mustard-filled projectiles.
* The purity of the agent inside the munitions depends on many factors, including the manufacturing process, potential additives, and environmental storage conditions. While agents degrade over time, chemical warfare agents remain hazardous and potentially lethal.
* It has been reported in open press that insurgents and Iraqi groups desire to acquire and use chemical weapons.
It’s quite interesting” …More
Then we have this coverage from the NY Sun.
Pentagon Fears Old Iraq WMD May Be Used – June 23, 2006 – The New York Sun: “WASHINGTON – The discovery of more than 500 chemical weapons shells in Iraq has heightened concerns at the Pentagon that terrorists in that country could use the old munitions against American soldiers.
‘We have recovered enough chemical weapons munitions to make us sensitive to the possible force protection implications these dangerous items present to our forces in Iraq,’ a Pentagon spokesman, Lieutenant Colonel Todd Vician, said yesterday in response to a query regarding the recent declassification of an Army National Ground Intelligence Center report that found a large cache of shells from the Iran-Iraq war containing toxic mustard and sarin gas.” More…