The Iraq Survey Group (comprising of 1200 weapons inspectors) spent four months trying to confirm the claim that, as of March 2003, Saddam Hussein possessed stockpiles of completed chemical and biological weapons. The head of the Survey Group, Mr David Kay, informed the US Congress in October that no evidence of stockpiles of completed chemical and biological weapons have been found.
"I have also reports of Australian officials who have on a number of occasions visited Guantanamo Bay and seen detainees. There were no reports of any torture."
Phillip Ruddock, 16 October 2003
The Department of Foreign Affairs told a Senate Committee: "I think it is important to say that on the first Australian visit to Mr Habib in Guantanamo Bay, which was only 10 days after his transfer there from Egypt, Mr Habib made some serious complaints about his time in Egypt."
The Department revealed that Mr Habib made similar complaints in 2004 during a further visit by Australian officials.
Senate Hansard, 3 June 2004
"This week, the Times of London detailed the use of a human shredding machine as a vehicle for putting to death critics of Saddam Hussein. This is the man, this is the apparatus of terror we are dealing with."
John Howard, Address to Nation 20 March 2003
Like the Weapons of Mass Destruction, no human shredding machine has even been found.
The treatment of detainees is a matter for the US. Australian officials who have visited David Hicks and Mamdouh Habib on several occasions have noted they are being treated humanely.
Alexander Downer, November 2003
Department of Foreign Affairs officers told a Senate Estimates Committee that Australian Government officials were advised in May 2003 of allegations that Mr Hicks had been beaten.
"As with chemical and biological weapons, the Australian government has no reason to believe that Saddam Hussein has abandoned his ambition to acquire nuclear weapons. All the circumstances suggest the opposite. Australian intelligence agencies believe there is evidence of a pattern of acquisition of equipment that could be used in a uranium enrichment program. Iraq's attempted acquisition of very specific types of aluminium tubes may be part of that pattern."
Alexander Downer, September 2002
But a former senior official of the US State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) confirmed that as of mid-2002, American, Australian and allied intelligence concluded that the aluminium tubes in question were not applicable to gas centrifuges as part of any reconstitution of a nuclear weapons program.
This page courtesy www.johnhowardlies.com