I heard a report on Fox News about twenty minutes ago (5 PM Central) that Senator Rick Santorum claims coalition investigators in Iraq found chemical weapons — artillery shells filled with a chemical agent (perhaps sarin nerve agent). The Fox report said Santorum had fought with the Pentagon and White House to get the information declassified. I’d like to see Santorum put his evidence up on the web. Michelle Malkin and her team at Hot Air already had a post up on the story– Hot Air’s post says the artillery shells contained either “degraded mustard” or sarin. I gather the stocks are 1991 (Desert Storm-era) weapons (in other words, left over weapons). I’m not sure that means Saddam had an active chemical weapons program but if this report proves to be true chemical weapons stock would be a violation of UNSCR 687. Stay tuned.There's more info there. Read it all.
Unrelated, an interesting article in the Wall Street Journal this morning about the Geneva Conventions as it applies or does not in Iraq. An excerpt:
The Pentagon yesterday announced the names of seven Marines and a Navy corpsman charged with the April 26 kidnapping and murder of a 52-year-old Iraqi man in the town of Hamdania. The accusations are grave and, if proved, will almost certainly lead to severe sentences. We suspect no parallel process is taking place among Iraqi insurgents for the weekend murders near Yusufiya of U.S. soldiers Thomas L. Tucker and Kristian Menchaca.
That's a distinction worth pondering the next time you hear Iraq war critics carp at the U.S. refusal to apply Geneva Convention privileges to enemy combatants. The Convention extends those privileges to combatants who abide by the laws it sets for war, including the treatment of prisoners.
Combatants who fail to obey those laws--by not wearing distinctive military insignia or targeting civilians--are not entitled to its privileges. If they were, the very purpose of the Convention would be rendered a nonsense. And this is why the U.S. has refused Geneva privileges to the enemy combatants at Guantanamo, which we hope is an argument heeded by the Supreme Court as it decides the Hamdan case.