The Financial Times is reporting that US forces have found documentary evidence of Iraq’s WMD program.
Lieutenant-General William Wallace, commander of the US army’s V Corps and the man who oversaw the land advance, acknowledged that US inspectors had had little success finding any chemical or biological weapons, but said that the documents coupled with intelligence from scientists who had worked on the programme made a strong case that a programme had been under way.
"We’ve collected evidence, much of it documentary evidence, that suggests there was an active programme," Gen Wallace said from Baghdad. "It’s taken a while to sort through that documentary evidence. A lot of the information that we’re getting is coming from low-tier Iraqis who had some knowledge of the programme but not full knowledge."
The article also states that US intelligence believes that the Iraqis were caught off guard by the speed of the US advance into Iraq and were unable to recover and use their weapons against the US and coalition forces. The Iraqis appear to have buried their program before the arrival of UN inspectors in the hopes it could be revived again once the inspectors had given Iraq a clean bill of health.
While this documentary evidence is less dramatic than a smoking gun in the remains of a weapon or laboratory, it does show a pattern of deception by Iraq over the extent and nature of their weapons program. It is only a matter of time before coalition forces find even more definitive evidence that Saddam Hussein was lying to the world when he stated that Iraq had disarmed itself of weapons of mass destruction.