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Iraq's Smoking Gun Hardcover – January 5, 2004

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Editorial Reviews

From the Author

This book was written prior to the capture of Saddam Hussein. The suppositions and conclusions described and developed in its text have been proven true by Saddam's own actions and words. As an American soldier was preparing to throw a hand grenade into his hole, Saddam cried out that he was ready to negotiate-though not ready to comply. Even in captivity, the man is defiant and resolute in his refusal to account for his "unaccounted for" WMD, his long list of terrorist ties, and his crimes against humanity (lest we forget their illegality too). In his actions he continues to portray part of Iraq's Smoking Gun.

From the Inside Flap

You are not reading a book that addresses the "Couldashouldawoulda" debate over invading Iraq. This text is an examination of facts that serve to answer the question, "why did the United States of America invade Iraq?" There are official government reasons listed by President Bush, Secretary of State Colin Powell, and the CIA. An effort has been made to find answers to those commonly stated reasons that many people around the world believe were the "real" reasons for the war.

It is not the intent of the author to either promote or detract from a single political stance on the issues surrounding the 2003 invasion of Iraq. There are in fact plenty of poor decisions that have been made by leaders of both Democratic and Republican parties. Many of these will be pointed out, and intransient supporters of those parties (people who consider themselves Liberals, Conservatives, Leftists, the Right, Neo-cons, Social Democrats, pinkos or power-mongers) will take issue with the historical facts, but an effort has been made to focus on those facts that are the least debatable and the least partisan in nature-though not always in tone or perspective.

Hindsight is 20-20, and what seemed like a good decision at the time for one party or the other probably helped walk America toward war with Iraq. There is blame enough for everyone, but people who want to better themselves will learn from their mistakes-learn from history. Others will try to point fingers at mistakes from opposing parties in an effort to lessen their own errors in judgment by pointing out greater or similar ones. The "they did it to us" or "they did it first, so it’s okay for us too" such arguments do not work on Sesame Street, and they should not work in Washington D.C.. (More grown up…) childish arguments will not work because the invasion of Iraq is not a partisan issue, it is an extremely complex issue, and it is not the result of a single man's decision. The 2003 War in Iraq is the result of a path in history that each and every American helped build-either actively by working for the government, indirectly by supporting one failed political party or the other, or through the apathetic indecision and ignorance that lead half of the nation to huff away from their responsibility to take part in the electoral process. Voting is a right, but each and every right has an equal or greater responsibility, and making no decision at all is a decision in and of itself; a decision that helped steer America toward invading and occupying Iraq.

If you bought this book in the hopes that it would support your case for or against the war, you will be both disappointed and pleased. There is no good reason for this war or any war, so those opposed to the war will be pleased. However, there was also no way to avoid this form of crisis resolution with Saddam Hussein. In a way, Operation Iraqi Freedom was the perfect war because: no one really wanted it, and yet it couldn't be avoided. This book will explain that in detail with historical facts and clear logic.

Please, read and learn. In this book, everybody screwed-up. Please, do not read and whine. After all, as is the case in all debates, bridges toward agreement and/or progress can either be burned or built. Burning bridges-i.e. polarizing the political orientation of the nation-is one of the major causes of this war. The time for building bridges is at hand for without that reach across the abyss, we are all destined to remain separated, weak, and even impotent as a nation. After all, discourse is good, but intractable division does nothing more than weaken national resolve-America’s will, and if there is one certainty about the War on Terror is:

…All wars are won in the will.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 356 pages
  • Publisher: Publishing (January 5, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1589395379
  • ISBN-13: 978-1589395374
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,751,167 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 4, 2004
I liked the book. It's certainly not a political talking points list for either party, and I was shocked to see so many quotes and facts. The author does a nice job of putting the 13 year Iraqi/US relationship into a historical perspective. I was surprised to see that it didn't really try to sway a for or against the war opinion like so many others. Instead, Pender seems to make a case that the war was almost inevitable since the US didn't demonstrate the resolve to deal with Iraq seriously, and Iraq never really made an effort toward peace or cooperation with the UN-at least not a very substantive one. I've read Dr. Blix' book on the war, and a few others, and this is easily the coldest and most numbing in terms of the reality checks. I was also surprised to see so many of what I thought were WMD lies compared to Dr. Blix' report. If you've read his book, and any of the personal accounts of the war that are coming out now, it's pretty clear that Bush was essentially just parroting the UN. I was also saddened to see the concerted effort by so many Presidential candidates to politicize the war instead of to genuinely provide a better option-like the Biden Luger authorization instead of the Edwards-Lieberman one. The book is also very good in that it takes some of the pictures from after the 1998 attack and shows that, yeah, Iraq really was re-building its facilities. This is also what was in Dr. Blix book (which I also recommend buying!).
If you want to learn the facts about the war-not the rhetoric, then this is a great book. If you want an anti-war rah rah rah, or a Vote for Dubya book, this is NOT for you. Personally, I thought it was very well written, very logical, a bit cold in its rationalizations, and well worth the time and money!
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18 of 24 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 10, 2004
This book takes the numerous WMD allegations from the Bush Administration and shows that almost all of them were repeated by the UN inspectors just days before the war. It then describes many as legitimate concerns and hardly lies because of the UNMOVIC 3/6/03 Unresolved Disarmament Issues report and how it supported so many of the Bush WMD claims. It is also the first book to really consolidate all of the known facts about Iraq's ties to Al Queda. People who are convinced that "Bush lied" or that the war was somehow created will be disappointed by those quotes. The same is true for many Democrats supporting a handful of presidential candidates as there are literally hundreds of quotes showing their justification for authorizing the war, and then paired with their "anti-war" quotes from after declaring their candidacy. On the other hand, the book also slams the Bush Administration for intelligence failures that are apparently losing the War on Terror. It also comes down hard on the first Bush Administration for failing to support the Iraqi Democratic uprisings after Desert Storm. Yep. No one escapes blame for the war in this book. Even the American people catch it for their lack of support for anything but airstrikes and quick raids since 1968! I did like the way that the book brings reason to the many conspiracy theories, proves one I hadn't thought of, and describes the reason for the war in a historical context and not a political one. The author claims to be anti-partisan, and that is abundantly clear! "Bleeding-heart" liberals and "neo-cons" beware. You will be offended-though you will also be pleased. This book is for those who are fed up with the partisan at all costs ideals of so many turncoat and fair-weather leaders.Read more ›
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19 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Pat Goltz on May 5, 2004
Verified Purchase
This book is not for the faint of heart. As the description says, it is not partisan. It is chock full of primary source material, including quotes and photos. For example, it has a photo of the airliner at Salman Pak where it is said terrorists trained (with the full knowledge and support of Saddam). It has copies of some critical documents in their entirety in the appendix. Was Saddam a threat to the United States? Absolutely! Not because he had a mighty army, but because of his capability of supplying weapons to terrorists, and his ties to them. We were lucky that we had people who understood how to defeat Saddam's army with a minimum of bloodshed, and who did their best to protect civilians. But that has nothing to do with whether Saddam wanted to rule the world, or whether he had the capability to bring the world economy to its knees, resulting in the deaths of billions. He did. He would have.
Did President Bush lie? No, for several reasons. First of all, he believes what he says. A liar knows he is lying. Secondly, just about everyone with any power in government supported our actions in Iraq, so leveling blame at Bush simply ignores reality. Thirdly, the intelligence on which Bush based his statements was, and remains, sound. This book is not for the faint of heart, because it shows why the war was inevitable. It gives all the facts that the media have been trying to sweep under the rug. Some people care more for partisan politics than the safety of the American people and protecting Americans from terrorists. They will even twist the truth, as one reviewer here has done. This book is an essential antidote.
The amount of research that went into this book was phenomenal. It lays everything right out on the table.
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