'Intelligent discontent is the mainspring of civilization.' -- Eugene V. Debs

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Al-Qaqaa in Pictures 

So those of you who have been following the al-Qaqaa scandal have surely already seen this report in which a news crew claims to have filmed al-Qaqaa and the currently missing explosives after the US invasion of Iraq:

A 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS crew in Iraq shortly after the fall of Saddam Hussein was in the area where tons of explosives disappeared, and may have videotaped some of those weapons.

[ ... ]

Using GPS technology and talking with members of the 101st Airborne Division, 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS has determined the crew embedded with the troops may have been on the southern edge of the Al Qaqaa installation, where the ammunition disappeared. The news crew was based just south of Al Qaqaa, and drove two or three miles north of there with soldiers on April 18, 2003.

During that trip, members of the 101st Airborne Division showed the 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS news crew bunker after bunker of material labelled "explosives." Usually it took just the snap of a bolt cutter to get into the bunkers and see the material identified by the 101st as detonation cords.

"We can stick it in those and make some good bombs." a soldier told our crew.

I'd like to address the qualifiers used in the second paragraph quoted above. The report says that the crew "may have been on the southern edge of the Al Qaqaa installation" but I think given the following pictures we can say for certain that they were...

Here's a picture of a building in the complex that was filmed by the news crew:

and here is a satellite photo of the al-Qaqaa complex, courtesy of the DOD:

Clearly, the odd domed half-buried bunker featured in the 5 Eyewitness News piece is one of the buildings in the satellite photo. Unless there's another complex just like this one that also happens to be in the same general area as al-Qaqaa ... etc.

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