What is the significance of the assertion that the threat of Weapons of Mass Destruction was blown out of proportion in influencing political policy.  

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that a very strong case can be made behind how the claim of weapons of mass destruction was used to manipulate political gain.  Certainly, this was the case in galvanizing the public behind the Iraq War in 2003.  The reality was that some type of rationale was needed to convince the American public that military action in Iraq was essential in protecting American security interests.  The development of the case that then- leader Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and was willing to use them against the United States was vital in moving public support towards favoring the invasion.  The idea here was that the claim of WMD was manipulated for political gain in American affairs.  Then- architect of the war Paul Wolfowitz alludes to this:

For bureaucratic reasons, we settled on one issue, weapons of mass destruction, because it was the one reason everyone could agree on.

The claim of "everyone" agreeing helps to broaden the idea that the use of WMD was an assertion rooted in political reality as much, if not more, than a sense of certainty behind its presence.  In this, one can see how the threat was used to defend the need to invade Iraq.  In doing so, the claim was demonstrated to be blown out of proportion.


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