Technicalities

Christopher Hitchens‘ article in Slate about the Hutton and Kay reports brings to the fore something that has been subtly bothering me for a while:
The British government’s claim that such weaponry [WMD]was deployable within “45” minutes is irrelevant from both sides, since if the weapons weren’t there they couldn’t be used at all, and if they were there they presumably existed in some condition of readiness. Many newspapers in London sold extra copies on the bannered “45 Minutes” headline and have been in a vengeful state ever since over their own credulity. That can’t be helped. In this ontological argument, nobody claimed that there was no WMD problem to begin with. (German intelligence reported to Gerhard Schröder that Saddam was within measurable distance of getting a nuke: That didn’t deter the chancellor in the least from adopting an utterly complacent approach.)
The 45 minutes thing is what seens to have most inflamed certain sectors of the British press. Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that the 45 minute claim is wrong. Really wrong. An entire 100% wrong. The weapons could thus be launched in… an hour and a half. Would that “sexing up” make such a difference to the Allied defense response?
Not to mention, as Hitchens says, that the weapons which can allegedly be launched in 45 minutes are the ones which Blair’s enemies claimed didn’t even exist. So the WMDs weren’t anywhere to be found, and even if they could, the allegedly nonexistent weapons couldn’t allegedly be launched in 45 minutes.
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One comment

  1. Sigivald

    More importantly, we shouldn’t have invaded, because he’d use those weapons he evidntly doesn’t have against us, and that would be terrible.
    Right, Carnegie?