Prev | List | Random | Next
Whether you side with Mohamed and John or believe George and Tom (That's ElBaradei and Kerry or Bush and Franks, of course) the one undeniable truth on the Al QaQaa story is that it will be weeks or months before truth is known - if ever. This is not RatherGate, (except that both stories illustrate the opposition's misunderstanding of all things military) and despite great efforts from all sides the Blogosphere isn't likely to be a player in this one. In the latest developments, The Washington Times published satellite photos today:
U.S. intelligence agencies have obtained satellite photographs of truck convoys that were at several weapons sites in Iraq in the weeks before U.S. military operations were launched, defense officials said yesterday.
The photographs indicate that Iraq was moving arms and equipment from its known weapons sites, said officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
According to one official, the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, known as NGA, "documented the movement of long convoys of trucks from various areas around Baghdad to the Syrian border."
Defense officials tell us the disclosure this week of the 380 tons of missing high explosives from Iraq was the work of International Atomic Energy Agency director Mohamed ElBaradei, who is said to be opposed to the United States.
Officials speaking on condition of anonymity said they believe Mr. ElBaradei, an Egyptian, sought to influence the outcome of the presidential election when his agency called on the new Iraqi government to account for the stored high explosives at Al-Qaqaa.
"There's no question that most people here think the whole [Iraqi explosives] thing was cooked up," one official said.
The IAEA wrote a letter to Iraqi Science and Technology Minister Rashan Mandan Omar, who then had his chief monitor, Mohammad Abbas, write back.
It was Mr. Abbas who claimed that the explosives were looted after the U.S.-led invasion, a claim defense officials dispute.
The Bush administration has been frustrated that Mr. ElBaradei has been slow to deal with the growing crisis over Iran's nuclear program and the refusal of Tehran to halt uranium enrichment in violation of IAEA rules.
Mr. ElBaradei also has not been tough on North Korea, for its rogue nuclear program.
An IAEA spokesman could not be reached for comment.
The speed with which the campaign of Sen. John Kerry exploited the issue also has raised suspicions in the Pentagon that U.S. intelligence agencies helped the Kerry campaign with the story, at least until it began to fall apart shortly after the report appeared in the New York Times on Monday.
Actually there is one other thing that's certain: We'd never have heard of al QaQaa if John Kerry had been running this country the past four years.