Bush could not do more for al-Qa'ida

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Scott Ritter: Bush could not do more for al-Qa'ida

From a speech by the former US weapons inspector to the Great Britain Iraq Society, in central London

18 July 2002

You don't allow a friend to drive drunk. We have now got a drunk at the wheel of America; Britain needs to take the keys away from him.

What George W Bush is proposing, taking military action against Iraq to eliminate Saddam Hussein, will effectively mean that Osama bin Laden will have won.

Whatever the faults of Saddam Hussein, and he is a brutal dictator, his regime is also secular. If Saddam does indeed fall, which Bush and Blair want, it is highly likely that an Islamist regime will take over after US troops leave, as they will sooner or later.

There is a good chance that a domino effect will come into play. We could see Saudi Arabia fall, Kuwait fall, Jordan fall, Egypt fall and the entire region being swept up in a sea of anti-Western, Islamic fundamentalism. Vast numbers of ordinary Arabs will swing behind the aims of al-Qa'ida. The invasion of Iraq is the quickest path to losing the war on terror and giving legitimacy to the criminal who attacked the US and the entire freedom of the world on 11 September.

This war is being driven by right-wing armchair generals in the States. The military men who wear uniforms believe it is ludicrous, but they are being driven towards it by people around Bush.

Many Iraqi defectors being trumpeted by Washington as experts on the Baghdad regime can be discredited. As an intelligence official I know you never publicise having a defector. They have a code name and you milk them for all the information you have, not parade them.

I took an oath when I joined the Marine Corps, and I still love the code and my country, but this is wrong.

-- Cherri (whatever@who.cares), July 20, 2002

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