According to a new Harris poll, about 50% of Americans now say Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003. This is up (up!) from 36% last year.
We stopped gagging on our corn flakes over reports like this one a long time ago. After all, over half the country doesn’t believe in evolution, either.
We can only hope, perhaps naively, that such a moment represents a low-water mark ... that (with apologies to Fitzgerald) we are face to face for the last time in history with something commensurate with our capacity for ignorance.
Half of Americans now say Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the United States invaded the country in 2003—up from 36 percent last year, a Harris poll finds. Pollsters deemed the increase both “substantial” and “surprising” in light of persistent press reports to the contrary in recent years.
The survey did not speculate on what caused the shift in opinion, which supports President Bush’s original rationale for going to war. Respondents were questioned in early July after the release of a Defense Department intelligence report that revealed coalition forces recovered 500 aging chemical weapons containing mustard or sarin gas nerve agents in Iraq.
“Filled and unfilled pre-Gulf War chemical munitions are assessed to still exist,” said Sen. Rick Santorum, Pennsylvania Republican, during a June 21 press conference detailing the newly declassified information.
Rep. Peter Hoekstra, chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, who shared the podium, said, “Iraq was not a WMD-free zone.”