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Tuesday, February 04, 2003
Same old, same old
The U.N. weapons inspectors found another empty chemical warhead while searching Iraq today.
The chemical warhead found at the al-Taji ammunition depot, north of Baghdad, apparently was the 17th turned up since Jan. 16, when inspectors found 12 of the 122mm rocket warheads at a storage area south of the capital in their search for banned arms.

The Iraqis said those empty munitions were overlooked leftovers from the 1980s. Three days later, they said their own search uncovered four more, at al-Taji. It wasn't immediately clear whether the single one found Tuesday, which a U.N. statement said was tagged and secured, was connected with those four.
Prediction: those opposed to war will argue both that (a) this proves that inspectors can find what we need them to find, and (b) this proves nothing, because it's just an empty warhead, and besides, we had already found several of these, so it's old news. It's not a smoking gun.

Prediction #2: After the U.S. overthrows Saddam Hussein, we will locate many weapons of mass destruction. Troops may find some, and Iraqi scientists will come forward to reveal many more caches. Those opposed to war will find some excuse why these stockpiles aren't smoking guns either.

(Corollary to prediction #2: If some of those weapons are used against the U.S. or U.S. troops while we are overthrowing Saddam Hussein, then those opposed to war will argue that these smoking guns are really the fault of the U.S. and would never have been used if the U.S. had just left poor Saddam alone.)

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