Oh Oh Oh! Sarin Nerve Gas Found!

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Phil Skayhan
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Post by Phil Skayhan » 2003-04-07 06:53am

MSNBC reporter Dana Lewis embedded with 101st reporting positive tests for nerve and blister agents.

It seems as though this is firming up but who knows.....

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Post by Spyder » 2003-04-07 06:56am

It's not exactly very concrete. I doubt that there are absolutely no chemical weapons in Iraq, hell only the people that spew in the street would make a claim like that. However it has been claimed that there are numerous warehouses, factories and stashes full of the stuff.

I hope they're proven right, I honestly do. If they are then the entire war wouldn't have been for nothing. But I honestly fear that it isn't going to happen.

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Post by theski » 2003-04-07 09:10am

Here is a link to the clean up article, soldiers and journalists to be decontaminated..http://www.charlotte.com/mld/charlotte/5573683.htm[url]
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Post by Phil Skayhan » 2003-04-07 01:09pm

www.reuters.com wrote:Mon April 7, 2003 01:06 PM ET
KERBALA, Iraq (Reuters) - Preliminary tests on substances found at a military training camp in central Iraq suggest they contain a cocktail of banned chemical weapons, including deadly nerve agents, U.S. officers said on Monday.
Maj. Michael Hamlet of the U.S. 101st Airborne Division said the initial tests revealed levels of nerve agents sarin and tabun and the blister agent lewisite, Reuters correspondent Kieran Murray reported from a U.S. military post at Kerbala.

Hamlet said a team of experts would carry out further tests as early as Tuesday on the substances, discovered at the camp in Albu Mahawish, on the Euphrates river between the central Iraqi cities of Kerbala and Hilla, site of ancient Babylon.
"If tests from our experts confirm this, this could be the smoking gun. It would prove (Iraqi President Saddam Hussein) has the weapons we have said he has all along," Hamlet said. "But right now we just don't know." (emphasis mine -Phil)

The United States invaded Iraq on March 20 to overthrow Saddam and prevent him using banned chemical weapons. Many other members of the United Nations opposed the attack, saying U.N. inspectors should be given more time to disarm Iraq.
So we will know one way or the other perhaps by tomorrow. While this is looking more and more like the real thing, I recommend everyone exercise some patience until this is confirmed by CentCom even though the temptation to say "told you so" may be very strong.

Also, can one of the mods please combine this thread with the other Chem Weapon thread under the heading "Waiting for confirmation of Chem WoMD".


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Post by irishmick79 » 2003-04-07 01:58pm

CNN is now picking up the story as well. It's in their Breaking News banner, and a story hasn't been linked yet.


The New York Times is also picking up the story as well....It's here below


WITH V CORPS HEADQUARTERS, Near the Kuwait Border, April 7 — American soldiers in Iraq's Karbala area, raiding an empty training camp in search of abandoned weapons, instead found several large oil drums that, according to early inconclusive evidence, contains nerve gas and mustard gas, military officials said.

During the raid, two American soldiers of the 101st Division became sick after accidentally inhaling a riot control gas, CN, that was also in an oil drum. Army officials said they did not believe the soldiers were seriously ill.

"We're treating it as real, we're reporting it as real" said Col. Tim Madere, the top chemical officer in V Corps, referring to the oil drums which he said may contain the chemical/biological weapons.

Initial tests, Colonel Madere said, indicated the presence of nerve gas and mustard gas. But Colonel Madere said conclusive results probably won't be available until Tuesday or Wednesday.

If the discovery in the drums turns out to be chemical weapons, it would confirm one of the Bush administration's most powerful arguments in starting the war against Iraq. Not only was Saddam Hussein's regime brutal and threatening, the administration said, but its cache of chemical and biologfical weapons were a danger to the Middle East and to the United States. It would also prove a significant triumph for the United States to display, on the world stage, the presence of chemical weapons.

Saddam Hussein's regime has scoffed at the accusation that Iraq has such weapons.

Officials here promptly notified the Defense Department about the discovery.

Colonel Madere said that a preliminary test by a military chemical unit at the scene, indicated the presence of nerve gas, which is potentially lethal, as well as mustard gas.

But he withheld final judgment until a squad of the 51st Chemical Company, which was rushed to the scene, took samples and returned them to an American base in Iraq where more conclusive tests can be made.

Because of dust, lightening and poor visibility, the chemical team was unable to board a helicopter with the samples. Instead, the team had to drive, delaying any more conclusive result until Tuesday or Wednesday.

According to Colonel Madere, soldiers from the 101st Division were on a mission on Sunday to the north side of the town of Hindiyah, east of Karbala, an area that has been a battleground in recent days. The soldiers were searching for an Iraqi weapons cache based on a captured map that showed various potential arms sites.

Colonel Madere said that the soldiers came upon an empty training camp that the Army believed may have been a base for either Iraqi paramilitaries or Palestinians and other foreigners seeking to join the Iraqi side. Slogans on the walls, saying "Palestine for Palestinians," and other evidence pointed to the possibility that the camp may have been a training base for non-Iraqis.

Almost immediately, the soldiers discovered an unusually large amount of chemical protection gear.

Instead of weapons, they soon came upon several oil drums on the site. At that point, they called in help from their chemical unit.

What happened next is a little unclear but several soldiers became ill, and the company quickly put on their chemical protection gear. Last night, the chemical unit told military superiors that they had identified the problem as CN, a riot control gas that causes vomiting and blisters. Colonel Madere said he did not believe that soldiers were seriously ill.

He said that the chemical team stayed overnight to check several other large oil drums. This morning, the team tested a 20-gallon drum, and concluded that it tested positive for sarin, a nerve gas, as well as tabun, another nerve gas.

Tests on the contents of a 55-gallon oil drum came up positive for mustard gas.

The team was then ordered to take samples immediately to laboratory facilities set up in Iraq to test for chemical weapons. Conclusive tests will take place in the United States.

Mustard gas is a blister agent that burns or blisters exposed skin, eyes and lungs. It can remain a hazard for days, and untreated, can cause death.

Sarin, cyclosarin and tabun are nerve agents that can act within seconds of absorbtion through the skin or inhalation. If untreated immediately, exposure to these agents can lead to convulsions, loss of consciousness and death.

During the 1980's, Iraq had a substantial chemical warfare capability that Saddam Hussein used against Iranians and the Kurdish minority in the north.

An unclassified Central Intelligence Agency report said that Iraqi forces killed or injured more than 20,000 people in multiple attacks, using the mustard agent and the nerve agents sarin and tabum in multiple attacks. The attacks were made with aerial bombs, 122 milimeter rockets and artillery shells against tactical military targets and Iraq's Kurdish civilian population.
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Post by Crayz9000 » 2003-04-07 02:09pm

Phil Skayhan wrote:Also, can one of the mods please combine this thread with the other Chem Weapon thread under the heading "Waiting for confirmation of Chem WoMD".
phpBB does not support thread merging as of yet.
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