Leaked logs show Iraq pursued bioweapons

Leaked logs released last week by the WikiLeaks organization show that U.S. troops continued to find evidence that Iraq pursued the development of chemical and biological agents during the second Iraq war.

An examination of the WikiLeaks Iraq war logs does not show the existence of some type of mass program instituted by Saddam Hussein, but they do show that what remained of his toxic arsenal was used by insurgents, jihadists and maybe even foreign agitators, according to Wired.

The 392,000 documents have hundreds of references to chemical and biological weapons over the period of the war, Wired reports. Most of them are intelligence reports or suspicions of WMD that did not exist, but in several cases, U.S. troops encountered very real dangers.

Soldiers found stored blister agent in 2004 and then found mustard gas three years later in artillery shells under an Iraqi Community Watch checkpoint. In the second battle of Fallujah, American troops came across a house that was being used as a chemical lab and were called to dispose of another chemical weapons cache later in the battle, Wired reports.

American forces were finding evidence of chemical weapons even late in the war. They found 10 rounds of artillery shells containing chemical agents in 2008. According to the WikiLeaks logs, “These rounds were most likely left over from the [Saddam]-era regime. Based on location, these rounds may be an AQI [Al Qaeda in Iraq] cache. However, the rounds were all total disrepair and did not appear to have been moved for a long time.”

The critical issue posed by these documents may be how jihadists and insurgents planned to use these weapons and whether or not they received Iranian assistance. A 2006 log claims that neuroparalytic weapons were smuggled into Iraq from its northern neighbor, Wired reports. Later that same month, foreign chemical weapons specialists were apprehended by American forces in Balad.