The "Salalaldin al-Ayoubi Brigades" claim the attack US forces near Samara (Iraq) with four missiles loaded with chemical agents, according to this MEMRI report of material appearing on the group's website.
The report comes complete with photos of gas-masked militants filling the shells with an unknown liquid - and has been met by the World Media with silent indifference.
For one thing, the photos could very well have originated during the Saddam Hussein regime ,when that worthy was gassing the Kurds and the Iranians. It was fairly typical practice to use POWs and condemned persons (criminals or dissidents) to fill artillery and rocket shells-as they were considered altogether expendable.
For another thing, the World Media KNOWS there were no WMDs in Iraq. It has said so repeatedly,and is not about to admit they could have been wrong at this stage of the game !
It would be so....inconvenient, that thousands of WMD casualties would have to occur before the "error" was admitted ; and, even then, some way would have to be found to blame someone other than terrorists !
Personally, I believe this was merely a propaganda stunt: designed to force US and Coalition troops to go back to wearing MOPP suits - which are hell to fight in, and which reduce wearer visibility and awareness : making them an easier target for snipers, etc.
That makes sense-regardless of what the photos show.
Followup: Contact was made with a friend who is a working weapons expert , and who deal with materials such as depicted on a daily basis.He has given me permission to quote him directly:
"I have to agree with Gene that this is most likely a propaganda stunt.
1) The rockets look like they have a Net Explosive Weight in the warhead of maybe 2 pounds, judging by the size beaker they were using to fill.
2) While it is possible to use oils as a transport liquid for chem/bio agents, we can almost definitely rule out blister agents (mustards, etc.) because even the vapor is toxic and we'd have seen that on video, blood agents (cyanogens since they're very volatile), and most nerve agents because of how difficult to manufacture they are.
3) most likely the liquid was probably melted TNT (if it's a chemical at all), which has that same color and consistency. It's easy to melt it and it's pretty stable, even as a liquid.
4) I didn't see anything that could be interpreted as a functional ignition train. It's possible what they attached with the pipe wrench is a fuze of some sort, but all that would do is sound like a large firecracker....and that's if it functions.
5) The motors sounded like Estes rocket motors, and judging by the size of the mortars, they didn't have much of a range, maybe a thousand meters or so. They'd have to have been much closer to our troops for the attack to have a chance of success.
6) The angle of launch is a joke, quite frankly. It's not high enough to reach a target from a 'safe distance' where they could not be detected and get away easy.
My guess is this is some yokels that made a propaganda video in order to 'get into the game' of the insurgency, so to speak. My guess is that those launch bodies are lying in the trees off in the distance in the video."
Personal note to whoever has been financing the "Salahaldin al-Ayoubi Brigades" : Sirs,you are being cheated by a group of fast-talking ,militarily inept amateurs.
I can't tell you how to spend your money, but I wonder : Are there no worthy poor within your view ?