The Bush administration has admitted that Saddam
Hussein probably had no weapons of mass destruction.
Senior officials in the Bush administration have admitted that
they would be 'amazed' if weapons of mass destruction (WMD) were
found in Iraq.
According to administration sources, Saddam shut down and
destroyed large parts of his WMD programmes before the invasion of
Ironically, the claims came as US President George Bush yesterday
repeatedly justified the war as necessary to remove Iraq's chemical
and biological arms which posed a direct threat to America.
Bush claimed: 'Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. We
will find them.'
The comments from within the administration will add further
weight to attacks on the Blair government by Labour backbenchers
that there is no 'smoking gun' and that the war against Iraq --
which centred on claims that Saddam was a risk to Britain, America
and the Middle East because of unconventional weapons -- was
The senior US official added that America never expected to find
a huge arsenal, arguing that the administration was more concerned
about the ability of Saddam's scientists -- which he labelled the
'nuclear mujahidin' -- to develop WMDs when the crisis passed.
This represents a clearly dramatic shift in the definition of the
Bush doctrine's central tenet -- the pre-emptive strike. Previously,
according to Washington, a pre-emptive war could be waged against a
hostile country with WMDs in order to protect American security.
Now, however, according to the US official, pre-emptive action is
justified against a nation which simply has the ability to develop
04 May 2003