"The United States had gone to war declaring it must destroy an active weapons of mass destruction program. Instead, American troops gradually found and ultimately suffered from the remnants of long-abandoned programs, built in close collaboration with the West."
- The Secret Casualties of Iraq's Abandoned Chemical Weapons (SLNYT) [more inside]
"To produce an effect like this, some very major mutagenic exposure must have occurred in 2004 when the attacks happened." Cancer, Infant Mortality and Birth Sex-Ratio in Fallujah, Iraq 2005–2009 (pdf) suggests the use of depleted uranium by US forces (who also used white phosphorous) might be the cause of soaring rates of cancer and birth defects among citizens of Fallujah. (more DU on the blue)
'Huge' Chemical Weapons Plant Found in Iraq - and Hans Blix is somewhere redfaced...
Maybe there are no weapons, after all... "On February 24, Newsweek broke what may be the biggest story of the Iraq crisis. In a revelation that "raises questions about whether the WMD [weapons of mass destruction] stockpiles attributed to Iraq still exist," the magazine's issue dated March 3 reported that the Iraqi weapons chief who defected from the regime in 1995 told U.N. inspectors that Iraq had destroyed its entire stockpile of chemical and biological weapons and banned missiles, as Iraq claims...." This is the same defector cited by the Bush administration numerous times as a reliable informant on the scope of Saddam's long-term WMD plans.
If Saddam Hussein were to use chemical/biological weapons in an Iraq conflict, how safe would soldiers in the field be? The Department of the Defense says "no problem", but some of the men on the ground seem to believe otherwise. The gear the soldiers will use to protect themselves and their water supply appears to be old, prone to failure while the training received in the usage of these tools looks inadequate. It could be the return of "Gulf War Syndrome" (PDF).