Tuesday, October 26, 2004
More on the NYT Implosion....
But the Times didn't just do a shoddy job of reporting and failed to identify the possibility that the explosives were gone before our troops arrived. It's worse than that: they did find that out, they just buried it deep in the story and, apparently, never bothered to follow up on it.
Here's Page 1 of the online version of the NYT story yesterday, where they wonder why nothing was done by U.S. forces to protect the site:
The International Atomic Energy Agency publicly warned about the danger of these explosives before the war, and after the invasion it specifically told United States officials about the need to keep the explosives secured, European diplomats said in interviews last week. Administration officials say they cannot explain why the explosives were not safeguarded, beyond the fact that the occupation force was overwhelmed by the amount of munitions they found throughout the country.
And then, buried on Page 3 of the story, we find the answer:
A senior Bush administration official said that during the initial race to Baghdad, American forces "went through the bunkers, but saw no materials bearing the I.A.E.A. seal."
This matches perfectly with the NBC story:
NBC News reported that on April 10, 2003, its crew was embedded with the U.S. Army's 101st Airborne Division when troops arrived at the Al Qaqaa storage facility south of Baghdad.
While the troops found large stockpiles of conventional explosives, they did not find HMX or RDX, the types of powerful explosives that reportedly went missing, according to NBC.