January 30, 2004



From Harper's Weekly Review:

"David Kay, the outgoing head of the Iraq Survey Group, said that Iraq got rid of its illegal weapons programs years before the United States invaded. Kay made it clear that the United Nations weapons-inspection process had succeeded in disarming Iraq and said the Iraqis had been reduced to experimenting with ricin, a primitive but deadly poison easily made from fermented castor beans; Kay also said that the CIA had completely misread the situation in Iraq, largely because the agency had no on-the-ground spies after the U.N. inspectors were removed. More than 100,000 Iraqis filled the streets of Baghdad in a march supporting the Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani in his demand for direct elections; thousands also marched in Basra, Najaf, and Kerbala demanding that Saddam Hussein be turned over to the Iraqi people to stand trial. Skepticism was growing that the United States will succeed in handing power over to an Iraqi client regime before the presidential election, and the head of the occupying authority's Tribal Affairs Bureau admitted that he had been relying on a 1918 British report in his attempts to make sense of local politics."

Posted by Sasha at January 30, 2004 11:20 PM | TrackBack