ISIS militants occupy Saddam Hussein’s chemical weapons facility


ISIS fighters 2Sunni extremists in Iraq have occupied what was once Saddam Hussein’s premier chemical-weapons production facility, a complex that still contains a stockpile of old weapons, State Department and other U.S. government officials said.

U.S. officials don’t believe the Sunni militants will be able to create a functional chemical weapon from the material. The weapons stockpiled at the Al Muthanna complex are old, contaminated and hard to move, officials said.

Nonetheless, the capture of the chemical-weapon stockpile by the forces of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, known as ISIS or ISIL, the militant group that is seizing territory in the country, has grabbed the attention of the U.S.

“We remain concerned about the seizure of any military site by the ISIL,” Jen Psaki, the State Department spokeswoman, said in a written statement. “We do not believe that the complex contains CW materials of military value and it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to safely move the materials.”

The takeover underscores the chaos gripping Iraq and the possibility that the growing Sunni rebellion could further destabilize the Middle East. Not lost on U.S. government and military officials is the irony that the latest chapter in a war designed to strip Iraq of chemical weapons could see radical Sunni extremists take control of that same stockpile.

The rise of ISIS has reignited the debate about the 2003 invasion of Iraq by the Bush administration and the 2011 decision by the Obama administration to withdraw remaining military forces from the country. The takeover of a chemical weapons stockpile—even if the weapons are useless—seems likely to further intensify those debates.

During the Iran-Iraq war of the 1980s, Hussein used the Muthanna complex to make chemical weapons, including sarin, mustard gas, and VX (a nerve agent), according the Iraq Study Group, which conducted the hunt for weapons of mass destruction in the aftermath of the war.

The Iraq Study group did find chemical munitions at Muthanna but determined that inspections by United Nations Special Commission, or Unscom, had ensured the facility was dismantled and remaining chemical stocks militarily useless and sealed in bunkers.

“Two wars, sanctions and Unscom oversight reduced Iraqi’s premier production facility to a stockpile of old damaged and contaminated chemical munitions (sealed in bunkers), a wasteland full of destroyed chemical munitions, razed structures, and unusable war-ravaged facilities,” the Iraq Study Group’s 2004 report concluded.

The Muthanna complex is near Lake Tharthar, roughly 45 miles northwest of Baghdad, an area now firmly in control of the Sunni rebels. ISIS has taken control of most of Anbar province as well as Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city.

Military officials said the U.S. was well aware of the Muthanna stockpile and wouldn’t have left it there if it posed a military threat. Still, when the U.S. pulled out of Iraq, it didn’t anticipate a large swath of the country, including numerous military bases, would be overrun by radical Sunni militants. One defense official said that if the U.S. had known the Iraqi government would lose control so soon, it might not have left the old chemical weapons in place.

U.S. officials repeatedly emphasized the takeover of the chemical weapons stocks didn’t constitute a significant military gain by ISIS. The group, multiple officials said, would find the weapons militarily useless even if they were to get access to the sealed bunkers where they are stored. Officials said the group hasn’t yet gained access to those bunkers.

“The only people who would likely be harmed by these chemical materials would be the people who tried to use or move them,” said a military official.

ISIS military gains have been aided by other Sunni groups including Baathists and other former loyalists to Hussein. Officers in Hussein’s army have also taken leadership roles in the rebellion. Some of those men may have some working knowledge of the use of chemical weapons from the Iran-Iraq war.




22 responses to “ISIS militants occupy Saddam Hussein’s chemical weapons facility”

  1. The real lebanese Avatar
    The real lebanese

    Is there even an army in Iraq? What the heck?

    1. wargame1 Avatar

      This is a pretext the Iranian and the Maliki government are creating in order to launch chemical weapon attack on the Sunni in Iraq. ISIL is a Iranian fifth column and they are just doing what Iran and Maliki ask them to do. No chemical weapon ever was found in Iraq after combing Iraq by the UN weapon inspectors and then USA did search after search and found nothing. After a chemical attack on the sunni it will be easy to blame it on Al-Qaeda and every sheep will jump in to the propaganda band wagon. The same tactics played by Bashar Al-Qaeda in Syria

      1. Majoos Avatar

        Agree 100%! You know NWO imbeciles will not rest until they achieve their goal and dream of one world government, once currency, one religion, one king….a.k.a Dajjal, Shia Mahdi, Anti-Christ.All Saud crypt jews rulers, zionist’s, neocons, Shia crypto ayatullats, etc. are in this together….the sorry part is innocents on every side are dying.
        They played the same evil trick in afghanistan, syria, and now in iraq.
        As you may well know qaeda and isis are on iran’s payroll now along with their master the zionists. They are just creating a huge chaos and confusion in the world and minds of people, that’s all.
        Why you think these isis or any other so called takfiris never attacked iran or any shia strongholds?….even now in iraq they took over sunni areas and not shia.
        Ever wonder why hizhbulsatan never gets attacked or air assaulted by the powers? Why iran and her loyal thugs never get dismantled even when they cry out loud against the powers? What’s the reason?…..simple….they all are in together fooling the innocent and naive people of the world…there have always been a hidden alliance between them. They have been successful in their deception and deceit….one of the many reasons being they played with human weaknesses and gave them what they seek be it homosexuality, sex, etc….all in the name of freedom. In doing so they have created a huge army who are loyal who go against the people who talk truth and seek justice…be it on the social media or in the mainstream media or elsewhere. They are their mouthpieces and propaganda machines.
        They made innocent people so scared that even good muslims are branded evil doers and given names such a salafi, etc. when they don’t even know what it means, being on salaf and a salafi. Basically they are making the life of good true muslims difficult even when they are against all this.
        A good muslim is an evil doer while a good christian is godly and get’s exalted.
        To justify, to make Islam and good muslims look bad and to achieve their goals they plant paid actors or mercenaries who neither are true muslims nor a considerate human who are made to be portrayed as sunnis…be it in middle east, pakistan or elsewhere just to further their agenda and evil aspirations.
        The part which people neglect or avoid to see is how about the other side of the coin… militants or zionists who killed and are still killing in the name of defending their people or shrines or interests and they are pardoned and called patriots and given medal of honor defending against evil.
        The oppressor is the oppressed in people’s and media’s eyes.

        1. IraniAngel Avatar

          u r the living proof what a nasty religion pisslam is.. the majoos r gonna kick ur a55 n there is nothing u can do about it.

      2. The real lebanese Avatar
        The real lebanese

        I do not think ISIS is a tool to Iran and Iraq directly, although they are helping them in the media from Syria and Iraq. As for the chemical weapons, they were shipped to Syria and Iran on the eve of the US invasion.

        1. BashamRadio Avatar

          Really? Sunni Saddam shipped weapons to Shia Syria and/or Shia Iran? Really?

          1. The real lebanese Avatar
            The real lebanese

            This was before Sectarian conflicts started erupting in the ME. There’s a reason Saddam planned to invade south instead of sets and west

  2. No shortage of dumb asses on american or iraqi sides that did not take the initiative or responsibility of destroying the left over crap or simply pouring 50 feet of cement on top of it.

    Scare tactics that it will make you sick if you touch it will not work on the profile of isis, in a nut shell they just got the dirty bomb they have dreamed about for years….dark days ahead!!!

    1. wargame1 Avatar

      There were no chemical weapon found in Iraq ever. Before the American invasion there were dozens of UN mission in search of it and found nothing and then after US invasion no such weapon were found. Suddenly Al-Qaeda found this weapon after a long Iraq war where Saddam hussain is in the History book ,when America installed the Shia puppet Nuri. Yeah dark day for the sheep who just love to buy any bullshit. Assad possesses the largest chemical weapon reserve in the whole middle east. Iran also possess chemical/Biological weapon and it was proved that Iran gassed the Kurds in order to frame Saddam

      1. Baaaaah!!! Pardon me but are you trying toTell me that Assad and Iran would use chemical weapons on other humans yet the angelic sacred angel Saddam is above it?

        1. wargame1 Avatar

          No chemical weapon were ever found in Iraq. But Assad and Iranian Majoos posses the chemical weapon and they are using it on the Syrian sunnis. Iraq was combed by USA and UN in search for chemical weapon and they founf nothing. You still find chmical weapon in your dream ! You know how? When you wake up in the morning you find your organic chemical on your bed sheet which draws a Iraqi map right in the middle of your bed.

          1. Are you ok Wargame?. I a m a little worried about you. What ever gave you the impression that I defend or prefer one cancer over the other. I live among Jewish neighbors that are very nice to each other and some are from Israel that has plenty of wmds yet I am not worried as I would be to be living or caught up between extremists whether Sunni or Shia!! Hate and sectarianism is a cancer that both Sunnis and Shia suffer from. I hate the horrors of it equally whether it is inflicted on Sunni people or Shia,
            Violence is violence and I don’t subscribe to it. If you think that I salivate and cheer for one side or the other.whether extremists Sunni Shia Jew or Christian POOP ON ALL OF THEM!!!

      2. sweetvirgo Avatar

        I agree with you wargame. There were never any chemical weapons found, not before or after the US invasion. And now these thugs claim they found some? Yeah right!!

      3. barabie Avatar

        Don’t expect the truth from geo. u r 100% correct. I actually missed reading your input. Xx

  3. Dirtlump Dwayne Avatar
    Dirtlump Dwayne

    Do those chemical weapons smell like bullsh!t? I know this story does so I just assumed. So are we going to see another invasion based on WMD lies after the first one?

  4. ArmyGuy Avatar

    We found two 55 gallon drums of sarin in Iraq early in the war and like many things it was not reported for some reason.

    1. AkhouManUki Avatar

      Given how desperate lil Bush was for anything resembling a WMD, something tells me this would have made it’s way up through the ranks.

    2. BashamRadio Avatar

      Even if we did, do you think 2-55 gallon drums of sarin justifies the death of almost 5,000 U.S. soldiers? I don’t.

  5. MekensehParty Avatar

    Waste of bites. Muthana’s stockpile is only a danger to whoever tries to do anything with it, including destroying it.
    It’s like sitting on an uranium mine in the year 1,500

  6. Wait, I thought they said Bush was wrong, that there was no evidence of WMD’s. Aren’t chemical weapons considered WMD’s?

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