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Old 03-20-2006, 08:47 AM   #1
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Saddams Al Qaeda Link?

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Documents seized in Iraq immediately after the US invasion in 2003 point to the presence of al-Qa'ida members in the country before the war, and show there had been moves to hide traces of "chemical or biological materials" from UN weapons inspectors. The documents have been posted on the internet as part of a rolling program by the US Government to make public the contents of 48,000 boxes of untranslated papers and tapes relating to the workings of Saddam Hussein's regime. Saddam is said to have routinely taped talks with cabinet members and intelligence chiefs.

US director of national intelligence John Negroponte was ordered by President George W. Bush to release the material. Hundreds of thousands of previously unseen documents and hundreds of hours of tapes will be placed on the web in the coming weeks. The first documents to be released offer tantalising clues to possible Iraqi contacts with al-Qa'ida. An Iraqi intelligence report dated September 15, 2001 -- four days after the attacks on the US -- says Osama bin Laden and the Taliban were in contact with Iraq, and al-Qa'ida members had visited the country. It claims the US had proof that the Iraqi government and "bin Laden's group" had agreed to co-operate to attack targets in the US and that the Americans might strike Iraq and Afghanistan in retaliation.

However, the information comes from an unidentified Afghan informant who states merely that he heard it from an Afghan consul, also unnamed. According to ABC News, which translated the tapes, the claims are "sensational" but the sourcing is "questionable". Another document from a "trustworthy" source and dated August 2002 claims people with links to al-Qa'ida were in Iraq. There is a picture a few pages later of the Jordanian terrorist leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. But the papers suggest Saddam's agents were trying to verify the presence of al-Qa'ida rather than colluding with it.

Documents from 1997 confirm that Saddam was giving UN weapons inspectors the runaround by removing correspondence concerned with "prohibited weapons" and clearing "labs and storages of any traces of chemical or biological materials". The transcript of one tape recording shows an official named as Comrade Husayn expressing concern to Saddam that outsiders would find out about imported material, including some from the US, apparently for chemical weapons. "They have a bigger problem with the chemical program than the biological program," he tells Saddam. "We have not told them that we used it on Iran, nor have we told them about the size or kind of chemical weapons that we produced and we have not told them the truth about the imported material."

In another taped conversation from the mid-1990s, a man called al-Sahhaf -- possibly a former information minister -- says: "On the nuclear file, sir, are we saying we disclosed everything? No, we have uncleared problems in the nuclear field." Apparently confirming that the nuclear program had been abandoned, he adds: "Everything is over. but did they know? No, sir, they did not know, not all the methods, not all the means, not all the scientists and not all the places."
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Old 03-20-2006, 08:03 PM   #2
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More on this from the Western Standard
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SADDAM HUSSEIN'S REGIME PROVIDED FINANCIAL support to Abu Sayyaf, the al Qaeda-linked jihadist group founded by Osama bin Laden's brother-in-law in the Philippines in the late 1990s, according to documents captured in postwar Iraq. An eight-page fax dated June 6, 2001, and sent from the Iraqi ambassador in Manila to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Baghdad, provides an update on Abu Sayyaf kidnappings and indicates that the Iraqi regime was providing the group with money to purchase weapons. The Iraqi regime suspended its support--temporarily, it seems--after high-profile kidnappings, including of Americans, focused international attention on the terrorist group.

The fax comes from the vast collection of documents recovered in postwar Afghanistan and Iraq. Up to this point, those materials have been kept from the American public. Now the proverbial dam has broken. On March 16, the U.S. government posted on the web 9 documents captured in Iraq, as well as 28 al Qaeda documents that had been released in February. Earlier last week, Foreign Affairs magazine published a lengthy article based on a review of 700 Iraqi documents by analysts with the Institute for Defense Analysis and the Joint Forces Command in Norfolk, Virginia. Plans for the release of many more documents have been announced. And if the contents of the recently released materials and other documents obtained by The Weekly Standard are any indication, the discussion of the threat posed by Saddam Hussein's Iraq is about to get more interesting.

These documents add to the growing body of evidence confirming the Iraqi regime's longtime support for terrorism abroad. The first of them, a series of memos from the spring of 2001, shows that the Iraqi Intelligence Service funded Abu Sayyaf, despite the reservations of some IIS officials. The second, an internal Iraqi Intelligence memo on the relationships between the IIS and Saudi opposition groups, records that Osama bin Laden requested Iraqi cooperation on terrorism and propaganda and that in January 1997 the Iraqi regime was eager to continue its relationship with bin Laden. The third, a September 15, 2001, report from an Iraqi Intelligence source in Afghanistan, contains speculation about the relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda and the likely U.S. response to it.
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Maybe the assumptions about no links between Iraq and Islamist terror groups were as accurate as Saddam having WMD stockpiles.
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Old 03-21-2006, 07:34 AM   #3
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Y'know Wanderer? Saddam Hussein may be a madman but he's certainly not STUPID.

Do people REALLY think that he didn't have WMDs? How many months and years have passed between the 1991 gulf war and the current war - TWELVE YEARS!!! Don't people think that he just MIGHT have had a chance to hide them or even smuggle them out of the country to Syria and other places while "negotiations" were going on?

If nobody found WMDs in Iraq (yet), its NOT because he didn't have them.....its because they haven't found where he hid them yet.

Isn't that obvious??
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Old 03-21-2006, 09:42 AM   #4
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i think it's obvious that Saddam needed to maintain the illusion of having WMDs to act as a deterrant to Iran.
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Old 03-22-2006, 05:34 AM   #5
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And in the 2006 of give peace a chance how would a still in power Saddam Hussein be reacting to a nuclear Iran?
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Old 03-22-2006, 05:59 AM   #6
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maybe iran wouldn't go nuclear if not for the mess in iraq. US is too diverted to effectively interfere, saddam no longer a deterrent, the stage is set for iran, it seems.
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Old 03-22-2006, 06:09 AM   #7
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The secret nuclear enrichment sites were revealed in August 2002, before the invasion of Iraq.

It is about self defence if only from the threat within, with nuclear weapons it bestows carte blanche for the mullahs to execute, imprison and do as they please to any progressive forces within the country without fear of international action. The Bush administration has done very little to back up the rhetoric of supporting a Free Iran and the blind eye it turns to the way that the mullahs execute gays is contemptible.

One point though, nation building sucks up money, lives and resources like theres no tomorrow. Decapitating a regime and oblitterating a conventional military can be done without any rebuilding or troops on the ground protecting a rebuilding effort.
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