Friday, June 06, 2003

"Fanatics on the Left" Watch

Heard yesterday, June 5th, on the floor of the US Senate:

The fundamental question that is nagging at many is this: How reliable were the claims of this President and key members of his Administration that Iraq's weapons of mass destruction posed a clear and imminent threat to the United States, such a grave threat that immediate war was the only recourse?

Lawmakers, who were assured before the war that weapons of mass destruction would be found in Iraq, and many of whom voted to give this Administration a sweeping grant of authority to wage war based upon those assurances, have been placed in the uncomfortable position of wondering if they were misled. The media is ratcheting up the demand for answers: Could it be that the intelligence was wrong, or could it be that the facts were manipulated? These are very serious and grave questions, and they require immediate answers. We cannot - - and must not - - brush such questions aside. We owe the people of this country an answer. Every member of this body ought to be demanding answers.


What amazes me is that the President himself is not clamoring for an investigation. It is his integrity that is on the line. It is his truthfulness that is being questioned. It is his leadership that has come under scrutiny. And yet he has raised no question, expressed no curiosity about the strange turn of events in Iraq, expressed no anger at the possibility that he might have been misled. How is it that the President, who was so adamant about the dangers of WMD, has expressed no concern over the where-abouts of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq?

Indeed, instead of leading the charge to uncover the discrepancy between what we were told before the war and what we have found - or failed to find - since the war, the White House is circling the wagons and scoffing at the notion that anyone in the Administration exaggerated the threat from Iraq.


Who are the American people to believe? What are we to think? Even though I opposed the war against Iraq because I believe that the doctrine of preemption is a flawed and dangerous instrument of foreign policy, I did believe that Saddam Hussein possessed some chemical and biological weapons capability. But I did not believe that he presented an imminent threat to the United States - as indeed he did not.

Such weapons may eventually turn up. But my greater fear is that the belligerent stance of the United States may have convinced Saddam Hussein to sell or disperse his weapons to dark forces outside of Iraq. Shouldn't this Administration be equally alarmed if they really believed that Saddam had such dangerous capabilities?

Saddam Hussein is missing. Osama bin Laden is missing. Iraq's weapons of mass destruction are missing. And the President's mild claims that we are "on the look" do not comfort me. There ought to be an army of UN inspectors combing the countryside in Iraq or searching for evidence of disbursement of these weapons right now. Why are we waiting? Is there fear of the unknown? Or fear of the truth?

Go read the whole thing.

Then compare and contrast how and what O'Reilly and Boot say, in the post below, about how and what war critics are saying with how and what Senator Byrd actually said.