About that al Qaqaa satellite imagery

By Geraldine Sealey
Published October 29, 2004 3:48PM (EDT)

Like magic, the Pentagon produced yesterday a satellite image of the al Qaqaa complex from March 2003, hoping to demonstrate that after the IAEA inspectors left and before Baghdad fell and U.S. soldiers moved into the area there was "activity" at al Qaqaa that could have been explosives being moved out of the facility. (Even though the Minneapolis TV station's video pretty well proves there were explosives there under IAEA seal nine days after the fall of Saddam Hussein.)

Far be it from us to suggest that the Pentagon would release confusing non-evidence at a time when this story has been a net-negative for President Bush, but GlobalSecurity.org says the "activity" shown in the Pentagon image wasn't even outside the right bunkers. "A comparison of features in the DoD-released imagery with available commercial satellite imagery, combined with the use of an IAEA map showing the location of bunkers used to store the HMX explosives, reveals that the trucks pictured on the DoD image are not at any of the nine bunkers indentified by the IAEA as containing the missing explosive stockpiles," GlobalSecurity.org says.

Geraldine Sealey

Geraldine Sealey is senior news editor at Salon.com.

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