- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Dec. 20, 1998 (USA Today) — One day after President Clinton halted a four-night U.S. and British air assault on Iraq, his national security team blanketed the Sunday talk shows to get out the message: “Mission accomplished.”

But some critics say it’s unclear what the mission was and what it accomplished.

“This was a largely punitive operation,” said Anthony Cordesman, a defense analyst at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “It did not cripple any of Saddam’s capabilities.”…

In Operation Desert Fox, the stated mission was to “degrade” Saddam’s ability to develop, manufacture and deliver [WMD]. After four days, the Pentagon said his weapon-making capacity was diminished but that it was too early to say how much. And critics said the vague word “degrade” had been used deliberately to allow leaders to claim success no matter what…

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