This troubling AP report says that “U.N. inspectors have yet to turn up any sign of prohibited weapons in Iraq, complicating the Bush administration’s task of justifying an armed invasion. Allies already are expressing misgivings….” In particular, British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw reportedly is saying that the likelihood of war has dropped below 50%.
I’ve never assumed that the Administration’s Iraq policy depends on what the inspectors do or do not find. My hope has been that U.S. intelligence services know where at least some of the weapons of mass destruction are, and that on or about January 27, in conjunction with the inspectors’ report, there will be a dramatic revelation that will decisively show that Saddam has been lying. This would be followed either by Saddam’s flight or by his deposition by military means.
If the inspectors report on January 27 that they couldn’t find anything, and the Administration has nothing to offer beyond its already-expressed conviction that Iraq possesses and is hiding such weapons, my confidence in the Administration will prove to have been misplaced. We’ll know soon.
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