The MSM is gleefully lapping up every ounce of criticism they can from a small, handful of retired generals who are attacking Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. But just because these guys were once high ranking military officials doesn’t mean they’re above criticism themselves. Especially when they seem to be playing Monday morning politician.
“I heard the case being built to go to war right away. And what bothered me, I had been hearing about some of the assumptions on the planning, dismissal of the for—previous plans, and I was hearing a depiction of the intelligence that didn’t fit what I knew. There was no solid proof, that I ever saw, that Saddam had WMD.”
But as CENTCOM commander under Clinton, he testified before Congress on February 29, 2000:
“Iraq has not forgone its missile and WMD programs and continues to resist the reintroduction of United Nations arms inspectors.
While Iraq’s WMD capabilities were degraded under UN supervision and set back by Coalition strikes, some capabilities remain and others could quickly be regenerated. Despite claims that WMD efforts have ceased, Iraq probably is continuing clandestine nuclear research, retains stocks of chemical and biological munitions, and is concealing extended-range SCUD missiles, possibly equipped with CBW payloads. Even if Baghdad reversed its course and surrendered all WMD capabilities, it retains the scientific, technical, and industrial infrastructure to replace agents and munitions within weeks or months. A special concern is the absence of a UN inspection and monitoring presence, which until December 1998 had been paramount to preventing large-scale resumption of prohibited weapons programs.
A new disarmament regime must be reintroduced into Iraq as soon as possible and allowed to carry out the mandates dictated by the post-Gulf War UN resolutions. The Iraqi regime’s high regard for WMD and long-range missiles is our best indicator that a peaceful regime under Saddam Hussein is unlikely.”
So the pre-war “depictions” of intelligence indicating Iraq may have had WMDs didn’t fit “what [he] knew about Iraq”, which was that they “retain[ed] stocks of chemical and biological munitions” and “the scientific, technical, and industrial infrastructure to replace agents and munitions within weeks or months” - in other words, Iraq may have had WMDs.
Color me confused.