Posted by: Ticktock | July 22, 2008

Yellowcake Journalism

 

The AP reported a few weeks ago that 550 tons of yellowcake material was shipped out of Iraq to a company in Canada that would use it for peaceful energy programs.  People are still writing letters about this event insisting that it validates the excuses given by neo-cons for their invasion of Iraq.  Is it true?  Did Iraq have WMD after all?  NO!!! 

Yellowcake is a natural form of uranium that takes years to process into nuclear material.  The stockpiles of yellowcake uranium recently sent to Canada were from before Desert Storm.  Even then, Saddam didn’t have the ability to process the yellowcake because Israel had bombed their facilities in the 80s, and we did so again during the first Gulf War.  After our victory in Iraq in 1992, the IAEA discovered the stockpile of yellowcake and continued to guard it and protect it until we invaded again. 

This stockpile wasn’t controlled by Saddam, but even if it was it wouldn’t have mattered.  Yellowcake uranium is merely a building block to nuclear weapons.  You can’t drop a ton of yellowcake on a country and cause a mushroom bomb.  Iraq didn’t have the money, the equipment, nor the ability to create WMD, despite what the world was told by our president and his war cabinet.

Everyone might remember the term “yellowcake” when it was bandied about in accusations that Saddam was trying to buy the material from Niger.  Bush even went so far as to insert the blatant lie that Saddam bought yellowcake from Niger into his State of the Union speech, even though he knew the intelligence was bad from information gathered by former ambassador Joe Wilson.  He was sent to Niger to investigate the Niger yellowcake sale to Iraq, but his investigation concluded that the intelligence was not valid. 

As punishment for the reality of Wilson’s honest discovery, Vice President Cheney and Carl Rove schemed a plan to “out” the identity of Wilson’s wife, Valerie Plame, who was an undercover CIA agent.  We all remember “Scooter” Libby who was sentenced to jail and then given a pardon by our president.  All of this happened, and yet still people want to insist that the secured yellowcake recently sent to Canada was a huge WMD discovery?  If Saddam had access to yellowcake the whole time, why would Bush think that he bought it from Niger?  Conservative apologists are on fire with all kinds of stupid!

We never found any WMD after our invasion.  We never found nuclear material that we didn’t know about.  The U.S. was tricked into an unjust war.  We’re the bad guys here.  Of course, I don’t blame the soldiers; many of them are doing their best under conditions of failed leadership.  But, anybody who says that we have a right to occupy Iraq and force feed them democracy is wrong on many levels.  We should leave Iraq, and if the country erupts into civil war or if Al Qaeda takes over, there will be only one person to blame:  George W. Bush. 

He claimed in his victory in 2004 that he planned to spend his political capital.  Well, he spent it, used it up, and borrowed more from future republicans.  Now, democrats deserve a chance to lead this country without constant filibusters and presidential vetoes.   Regardless of political affiliation, we all have a right to be mad that our federal budget is knee-deep in debt because of this war based on deceit.

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