The Secret Worldwide Transit Cabal

Informed but opinionated commentary and analysis on urban transportation topics from the Secret Worldwide Transit Cabal. Names have been omitted to protect the guilty.

Our Mission: Monkeywrench the Anti-Transit Forces

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Wednesday, September 10, 2003


Home of More Transit Links Than You can Possibly Check(tm), Unless you have no life other than websurfing

"Truth passes through three phases: 1) It is ridiculed. 2) It is violently opposed. 3) It is accepted as self-evident." Albert Schopenhouer. In the United States, rail is currently passing through Phase Two.

From the Cabalmaster:

We here at The Secret Worldwide Transit Cabal tend to frown on “conspiracy” theories. They provide all-too-simple explanations for complex problems and situations.

But there is such a thing as “disinformation,” and we can’t help wondering if earlier reports of an extensive tunnel network beneath the streets of Baghdad fits into this category to some extent.

President Bush announced the start of the Iraq war on March 19, 2003. The Iraqi regime collapsed on April 9, and President Bush declared the end of “major combat operations” on May 2. The U.S. State Department lifted its ban on travel by U.S. citizens to Iraq on July 15. This had been in effect 12 years – since the beginning of Gulf War I in 1991. The Big Bad Baghdaddy, aka “Da Guy Wid Da Mustache,” was last seen and filmed in public on or about April 9, but is presumed to be alive, in hiding . . . somewhere.

Meanwhile, we Opinionated Ones note, with interest, that we could find no online items about this story dated after April 9.

The prime source for the CBS “60 Minutes” report in February 2003 was an Iraqi scientist, imprisoned during the 1991 Gulf War who later escaped. This source stated that “Da Guy Wid Da Mustache” got hold of plans drawn up for transit tunnels, then told the military to build them for weapons of mass destruction. This eventually became a “very complex network, multi-layered tunnels” extending more than 60 miles. But the scientist never saw the tunnels himself. An analyst for the military-affairs think tank (see here stated that few people have, and added “There is tons of conjecture on this subject right now, but there's been no official confirmation or official imagery.” see here,4395,182204,00.html.

(An explosion on June 16 destroyed a car and injured several people in a “road tunnel” in central Baghdad (see here ), but this “tunnel” is probably better described as a “long underpass.”)

A 60-mile network of large tunnels, beneath a densely-populated city of three million people, that no one has seen?

One possible explanation: Iraqi disinformation, intended to discourage the U.S. from invading. However, if this is true, then the previous regime may have received a rude surprise in December 2002. As U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld put it:

“They've got enormous miles and miles and miles of underground tunneling, I don't know how inspectors on the surface of the Earth can even know what's going on in the underground facilities.”

It is also possible, of course, that the tunnels do exist, to an extent long known by U.S. intelligence, but not yet described in detail to avoid compromising intelligence sources and methods.

An urban legend? We Opinionated Ones tend to shy away from simple explanations, and this is one. Baghdad is large enough and populous enough to justify a subway, and the previous regime wanted to build one. The previous regime also wanted to build all sorts of nasty weapons, and the facilities required for development and concealment.

In any case, we know we’re not the only ones waiting for the full story to emerge.

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