Experts: Iraq has tons of chemical weapons

Discussion in 'Politics & Current Events' started by Ian McCracken, Sep 2, 2002.

  1. Ian McCracken

    Ian McCracken Member

    May 28, 1999
    SS Lazio Roma
    Nat'l Team:
    Experts: Iraq has tons of chemical weapons

    WASHINGTON (CNN) -- As some in the Bush administration press the case for a pre-emptive strike against Iraq, weapons experts say there is mounting evidence that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein has amassed large stocks of chemical and biological weapons he is hiding from a possible U.S. military attack.

    Washington's concern is that Iraq could supply those weapons to terrorist groups, although U.S. officials say that there is no evidence that has happened so far.

    "If we wait for the danger to become clear, it could be too late," said Sen. Joseph Biden, D-Delaware, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee.

    Jon Wolfsthal, an analyst with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said Iraq's inventory is significant.

    "Iraq continues to possess several tons of chemical weapons agents, enough to kill thousands and thousands of civilians or soldiers," Wolfsthal said.

    U.N. weapons experts have said Iraq may have stockpiled more than 600 metric tons of chemical agents, including mustard gas, VX and sarin. Some 25,000 rockets and 15,000 artillery shells with chemical agents are also unaccounted for, the experts said.

    The Iraqis also have biological weapons, according to U.S. officials. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said recently that Iraq has mobile biological weapons laboratories, which would be nearly impossible for U.S. forces to target.

    "The concern is they either have on hand -- or could quickly re-create the capability to produce -- vast amounts of anthrax, tons of material, compared with the several grams of material that literally shut down the U.S. postal system last year," Wolfsthal said.

    "This is something that could kill thousands upon thousands of people, depending on the means of distribution."

    While President Bush has said he hasn't made up his mind on what to do about Iraq's growing arsenal, it appears that two members of his administration have made up theirs.

    Vice President Dick Cheney has pushed for a pre-emptive strike, warning that the "risk of inaction is far greater than the risk of action." Secretary of State Colin Powell has urged that U.N. weapons inspectors be given one last chance before an attack is launched.

    Full Story
  2. obie

    obie New Member

    Nov 18, 1998
    NY, NY
    New York Red Bulls
    Nat'l Team:
    United States

Share This Page