On Wednesday, Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), quoting from a Pentagon report, announced that since 2003, over 500 weapons of mass destruction have been found in Iraq. According to Santorum, these sarin- and mustard-filled projectiles prove that “weapons of mass destruction are, in fact, in Iraq.” With news this important, one would expect wide-spread coverage, right? Wrong. The so-called main stream media is silent on this discovery, instead painting their own view of Iraq.
At the press conference, Santorum along with Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-MI) said, “It is essential for the American people to understand that these weapons are in Iraq. I will continue to advocate for the complete declassification of this report so we can more fully understand the complete WMD picture inside Iraq.”
Santorum noted that the six key findings from the Pentagon report are as follows:
- Since 2003 Coalition forces have recovered approximately 500 weapons munitions which contain degraded mustard or sarin nerve agent.
- Despite many efforts to locate and destroy Iraq’s pre-Gulf War chemical munitions, filled and unfilled pre-Gulf War chemical munitions are assessed to still exist.
- Pre-Gulf War Iraqi chemical weapons could be sold on the black market. Use of these weapons by terrorists or insurgent groups would have implications for Coalition forces in Iraq. The possibility of use outside Iraq cannot be ruled out.
- The most likely munitions remaining are sarin and mustard-filled projectiles.
- The purity of the agent inside the munitions depends on many factors, including the manufacturing process, potential additives, and environmental storage conditions. While agents degrade over time, chemical warfare agents remain hazardous and potentially lethal.
- It has been reported in open press that insurgents and Iraqi groups desire to acquire and use chemical weapons.
It’s quite interesting and disappointing to see how this news has been bypassed by almost all of the major media outlets. This morning, there was not a single mention of the story on the CNN web site. Instead, the main headlines listed under “Latest News” (in addition to prime space for coverage of Western wildfires) where:
- 4 U.S. soldiers die in Afghan battle
- Al Qaeda’s No. 2 releases new video
- Attacks kill 5 U.S. service members in Iraq
- Debate over Iraq heats up in Senate
- Marines, corpsman face murder charges
On the ABC News web site, the lead story is “Seven Marines and One Sailor Charged With Murder.” Also listed on the main page under “Headlines” are the following stories:
- U.S. Troops Killed: 4 in Iraq | 4 in Afghanistan
- Ariz. Wildfires Dangerously Close to Homes, Park
- Calif. May Soon Face ‘Big One’
- Japan Ships to Monitor N. Korea’s Missile Tests
The CBS News web site focuses on the wildfires as the lead story. Other main headlines include:
- Duke Mom Wants Son ‘To Have Life Back’
- Al Qaeda Tape Urges Afghans To Rise Up
- Updated: 5 U.S. Troops Killed In Iraq
- Times Have Changed In Germany
- Dark Days For Bureau Of Indian Affairs
This morning, the FOX News web site had the WMD story on their main page, and it is now found in their political section. The main page of the New York Times’ web site makes no mention of the WMD story, but rather runs as their lead: “G.O.P. Decides to Embrace War as Issue.”
With all the one-sided reporting, is it any wonder that public support for action in Iraq will go down over time? So much was made of Abu Ghraib, yet where is the wide-spread reporting and outrage over what was done to two of America’s soldiers who were captured by Iraqi insurgents?
There is progress being made in Iraq, and the American people deserve honest, fair reporting on both the good and the bad. Their selective coverage does nothing to build a full story of what is happening in Iraq, but instead, is used to promote a left-wing agenda. That is not the role of the media, and hopefully, more and more Americans will see through their attempts to twist the news.