Monday, October 25, 2004


Where's the Outrage?

Today the New York Times prints what is possibly the starkest example of the Bush administration's incompetence in their handling of the war in Iraq and it gets only a passing mention in the evening news. According to the Times, almost 380 tons (yes tons) of explosives are now missing from an Iraqi weapons cache.

The NBC Nightly News spent a whole two minutes on this subject at the begining of their broadcast. Instead of focusing on the fact that our President, who claims he can keep us safe from terrorists, and his staff were unable or unwilling to guard 380 tons of explosives, they spent a good five minutes discussing how good President Clinton looked when he appeared with John Kerry in Philadelphia today. I admit that I was glad to see Clinton back up and around, but the shallowness of their coverage while ignoring the severity of the missing explosives was all too typical of today's misguided media.

In plain and simple terms, the Bush administration fucked up. In May of this year, the International Atomic Energy Agency sent a memo to the White House warning that terrorists might be helping themselves to "the greatest explosives bonanza in history," yet the Bush team did nothing. They continued to ignore the problem allowing these explosives to be looted and spread throughout the country and possibly the entire Middle East. These are not mere grenades or landmines, this is HMX, which stands for "high melting point explosive," and RDX, which stands for "rapid detonation explosive." These explosives are some of the most devestating available. It took less than a pound of of this type of material to bring down Pan Am Flight 103. According to Atrios, the amount of missing explosives is about 4,000 (yes 4,000) times as dangerous as the explosion that destroyed the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.

So I'll ask it again: Where's the outrage?

Why isn't this all over the news? Why isn't someone demanding that the Bush administration explain this? When the subject was broached today with Scott McLellan, he responded this way:

[Did I miss it, or did he not answer the question?]

[Actually Scott, that puts nothing in context. They're still missing and you still haven't explained why or how that happened.]

[Once again Scott, you're not answering the question. You're being asked who's fault it is and instead of saying that we fucked up you're giving us bullshit rhetoric.]

[So in other words, we were more worried about securing the oil fields than keeping our soldiers and the rest of the Middle East safe. That's about right.]

[In other words, it's not our fault. It's the fault of the Iraqis because we don't make mistakes.]

Thanks Scott, that sure cleared things up. My understanding of what he just said is "It's not our fault." But in fact, these weapons were being guarded by the IAEA themselves before we invaded. So yes Scott, it most certainly is our fault.

According to the administration's spin, it's not that big of a deal, because these are just explosives not nuclear weapons. Maybe President Bush could explain how insignificant these explosives are to the families of those servicemen and women who have lost their lives in explosions while serving in Iraq. Since June, one month after the IAEA sent the memo warning the White House of the possibility of these explosives falling into the wrong hands, at least 90 American soldiers have lost their lives due to an IED or a car bombing. Many of which may have contained the exact material our government failed to secure. Those 90 deaths account for almost one-third of all American casualties during that time.

So I'll ask it one more time: Where's the outrage?

This is irrefutable evidence that our government's inneptitude has actually left us less safe than we were before we invaded Iraq. In their own words, we were more interested in Iraq's oil than we were in safeguarding the weapons and keeping our soldiers safe.

I, for one, am pissed! I can hardly wait the eight days to cast my vote to remove this incapable prick from office.

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