[FoRK] The administration feared destroying the terrorist camp in Iraq could undercut its case for war against Saddam.

Gregory Alan Bolcer gbolcer at endeavors.com
Mon May 17 07:27:49 PDT 2004


The found that lobbing a few cruise missiles only empowered the
terrorists, thus they changed the policy.  But more interesting, are
you saying you buy into the idea that al-qaeda related terrorists
were setting up chemical weapons labs in Iraq?  If so, that
would be the first time anyone has acknowledged the link.  
 
Greg

	-----Original Message----- 
	From: fork-bounces at xent.com on behalf of Owen Byrne 
	Sent: Mon 5/17/2004 6:32 AM 
	To: fork at xent.com 
	Cc: 
	Subject: [FoRK] The administration feared destroying the terrorist camp in Iraq could undercut its case for war against Saddam.
	
	

	Is that a killer sentence or what. Its in slate's link here:
	http://slate.msn.com/id/2100549/
	to this story:
	http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4431601/
	
	They were laughing at you folks. The white house that is. "Can you
	believe that the morons that live in this country actually bought this
	crap?"
	Owen
	=============================================================================================
	Avoiding attacking suspected terrorist mastermind
	Abu Musab Zarqawi blamed for more than 700 killings in Iraq
	By Jim Miklaszewski
	Correspondent
	NBC News
	Updated: 7:14 p.m. ET March 02, 2004
	
	With Tuesday’s attacks, Abu Musab Zarqawi, a Jordanian militant with
	ties to al-Qaida, is now blamed for more than 700 terrorist killings in
	Iraq.
	
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	But NBC News has learned that long before the war the Bush
	administration had several chances to wipe out his terrorist operation
	and perhaps kill Zarqawi himself — but never pulled the trigger.
	
	In June 2002, U.S. officials say intelligence had revealed that Zarqawi
	and members of al-Qaida had set up a weapons lab at Kirma, in northern
	Iraq, producing deadly ricin and cyanide.
	
	The Pentagon quickly drafted plans to attack the camp with cruise
	missiles and airstrikes and sent it to the White House, where, according
	to U.S. government sources, the plan was debated to death in the
	National Security Council.
	
	‘People were more obsessed with developing the coalition to overthrow
	Saddam than to execute the president’s policy of pre-emption against
	terrorists.’
	
	— Roger Cressey
	Terrorism expert
	
	“Here we had targets, we had opportunities, we had a country willing to
	support casualties, or risk casualties after 9/11 and we still didn’t do
	it,” said Michael O’Hanlon, military analyst with the Brookings Institution.
	
	Four months later, intelligence showed Zarqawi was planning to use ricin
	in terrorist attacks in Europe.
	
	The Pentagon drew up a second strike plan, and the White House again
	killed it. By then the administration had set its course for war with Iraq.
	
	“People were more obsessed with developing the coalition to overthrow
	Saddam than to execute the president’s policy of preemption against
	terrorists,” according to terrorism expert and former National Security
	Council member Roger Cressey.
	
	In January 2003, the threat turned real. Police in London arrested six
	terror suspects and discovered a ricin lab connected to the camp in Iraq.
	
	The Pentagon drew up still another attack plan, and for the third time,
	the National Security Council killed it.
	
	Military officials insist their case for attacking Zarqawi’s operation
	was airtight, but the administration feared destroying the terrorist
	camp in Iraq could undercut its case for war against Saddam.
	
	The United States did attack the camp at Kirma at the beginning of the
	war, but it was too late — Zarqawi and many of his followers were gone.
	“Here’s a case where they waited, they waited too long and now we’re
	suffering as a result inside Iraq,” Cressey added.
	
	And despite the Bush administration’s tough talk about hitting the
	terrorists before they strike, Zarqawi’s killing streak continues today
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