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The Novak Exception Journalists abandon their principles in the Plame kerfuffle.
WSJ.com ^ | 2/20/04 | N/A

Posted on 02/20/2004 3:13:59 PM PST by swilhelm73

Edited on 04/23/2004 12:06:29 AM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]

Here's one scoop we never thought we'd live to hear: "Journalists Call on Newsman to Disclose Confidential Sources." To understand this sudden pang of press conscience, it helps to know that the journalist in question is columnist Robert Novak.

At issue is his July 14 column explaining why the Bush Administration would entrust an investigation into the alleged Iraqi attempt to buy uranium yellowcake from Niger to Joe Wilson--a high-ranking National Security Council member from the Clinton years. The answer Mr. Novak reported receiving from Administration sources was that Mr. Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, worked at the CIA and had put her husband forward for the job.


(Excerpt) Read more at opinionjournal.com ...


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Government; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: cialeak; mediabias; murraywaas; novak; plame; pressbias; waas; wilson

1 posted on 02/20/2004 3:14:00 PM PST by swilhelm73
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To: swilhelm73
A CIA operative married to an Ambassador is a bad match, and it will unnecessarily raise suspicions about our other diplomats. One of them should have changed careers.

But it's too late now. The damage is done.

2 posted on 02/20/2004 3:37:24 PM PST by HAL9000
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To: IncPen
Breathtaking hypocrisy, really.
3 posted on 02/20/2004 3:38:47 PM PST by BartMan1
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To: swilhelm73
An excellent dissertation on but one example of the breathtaking media hypocrisy.

And just as they knew damn well that it wasn't "Ken Starr" leaking grand jury testimony, yet they pushed and prodded that as a "scandal", they all know it was not somebody in the WH or someone associated with the president or VP who "leaked" Plame's name. But they enjoy creating a mock scandal in order to taint an honorable administration.
4 posted on 02/20/2004 3:43:40 PM PST by cyncooper
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Comment #5 Removed by Moderator

To: HAL9000
The complete damage may not be done.
Agents and assets with whom she worked, and their plans, WERE ENDANGERED by Traitor Novak.

Two government officials told Robert Novak
specifically not to publish the name of undercover CIA operative Valerie Plame
in his July 14 newspaper column.

6 posted on 02/20/2004 3:53:39 PM PST by Diogenesis (If you mess with one of us, you mess with all of us)
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To: Diogenesis
I do not believe Waas for one minute.

I am no huge Novak fan, but he would not lie about that aspect. Plus knowing the intracies of this story it does not ring true at all.

Also note: As the WSJ points out above, it is STILL not clear Plame was "undercover".
7 posted on 02/20/2004 3:53:51 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: Diogenesis
I remember posting on that thread pointing out just a few, uh, "flaws", in that story.

8 posted on 02/20/2004 3:54:48 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: Diogenesis
"Q.E.D. Robert Novak is a traitor to the USA and its people"

Rubbish. Novak is a patriot and a damn good reporter.

Plame is the one who endangered agents and assets when she tasked her husband with an intelligence mission that he had no business performing. She should be dismissed from the agency for her appalling lack of judgement.

9 posted on 02/20/2004 4:01:14 PM PST by HAL9000
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To: HAL9000
There is a lot of Plame blame to go around.
But a choice was made by Novak AFTER an explicit warning or two.
Bad choice; like Benedict Arnold, late in his career.
10 posted on 02/20/2004 4:05:07 PM PST by Diogenesis (If you mess with one of us, you mess with all of us)
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To: Diogenesis
But a choice was made by Novak AFTER an explicit warning or two.

Wrong. He was NOT given warnings, explicit or implicit.

11 posted on 02/20/2004 4:07:58 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: cyncooper
And you know ... how?
And those who warned him are "liars", why?
12 posted on 02/20/2004 4:09:25 PM PST by Diogenesis (If you mess with one of us, you mess with all of us)
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To: Diogenesis
I know every bit of this story and I have sensibly assessed the credibility of the parties.

Your Waas article is trash, with all due respect. I am mystified why you have glommed onto it. It is an error-ridden piece that strips it of any merit.

13 posted on 02/20/2004 4:12:38 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: Diogenesis
And those who warned him are "liars", why?

And let me be clear: Tenet has stated a sub-group in the CIA sent Wilson on their own initiative. It was not at his own behest and it was not done on behalf of the president or VP, who were not even briefed on this tea-sipping sojourn. As I pointed out on the other thread, the former CIA official is clearly Alan Foley, Plame's former boss. They had an agenda for sending her husband to Niger and yes, I say they are liars.

14 posted on 02/20/2004 4:16:08 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: HAL9000
One of Bush's major blunders continues to be his refusals to purge all the people in his administration who were appointed by Willie and the filth of his sewer dwellers. This ambassador was a Willie appointee and is surrouned by the stench of Willie's corruption. Why he was used for any government purpose by the Bush administration is a security breach of the worst kind.
15 posted on 02/20/2004 4:19:23 PM PST by Tacis
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To: swilhelm73
THIS IS NEWS!


"At issue is his July 14 column explaining why the Bush Administration would entrust an investigation into the alleged Iraqi attempt to buy uranium yellowcake from Niger to Joe Wilson--a "high-ranking National Security Council member from the Clinton years."

This is the first time I have read that JOE WILSON was a "high ranking National Security Council member from the Clinton years.

Joe Wilson has always been referred to as former ambassador.

Maybe clintons sent him to gather "INTEL" or JFKerry, since he join his campaign.
16 posted on 02/20/2004 4:30:43 PM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: cyncooper
I am not so sure that this was soley an inside CIA assignment. Considering who JOE WILSON sent his report to -- NYTimes.
17 posted on 02/20/2004 4:39:36 PM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: Just mythoughts
Indeed...

And don't forget, before the NY Times piece there were articles both here and over in the liberal UK media citing an anonymous "CIA official" putting out the Wilson version of things.

Oh, yes indeedy.
18 posted on 02/20/2004 4:41:17 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: Tacis
This ambassador was a Willie appointee and is surrouned by the stench of Willie's corruption. Why he was used for any government purpose by the Bush administration is a security breach of the worst kind.

Ack, as I've outlined, he wasn't.

It was done by an anti-Bush sub-group for their own purposes.

19 posted on 02/20/2004 4:42:34 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: Just mythoughts
Joe Wilson was the planner of that infamous African journey Bongo Bill made. Remember that? Couple thousand people went on that jaunt if memory serves.
20 posted on 02/20/2004 4:43:38 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: cyncooper
Waas and Novak have been feuding for years. Here's a thought - Maybe Wilson and Plame are responsible for the purported massive leak of national security documents to Waas in 1998 - and now he's repaying the favor with his smear campaign against Novak. As an impoverished Salon writer, Waas was been unhappy about the unfavorable coverage he's received from the Dark Prince.
21 posted on 02/20/2004 4:43:45 PM PST by HAL9000
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To: cyncooper
Did you note that Wilson was a member of Clintons National Security Council.... I have never heard that little tid bit before.
22 posted on 02/20/2004 4:45:24 PM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: HAL9000; Dog
Pinging Dog to your thought.

Interesting...
23 posted on 02/20/2004 4:45:47 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: cyncooper
So that is what put him on the National Security Council?
24 posted on 02/20/2004 4:46:51 PM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: Just mythoughts
Did you note that Wilson was a member of Clintons National Security Council....

Yes. Here is his bio that has been referenced frequently here on FR:

FR ALERT: 2002 Official Bio of Joseph Wilson mentions his wife

Excerpt:

Ambassador Wilson served as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for African Affairs at the National Security Council from June 1997 until July 1998. In that capacity he was responsible for the coordination of U.S. policy to the 48 countries of sub-Saharan Africa. He was one of the principal architects of President Clinton’s historic trip to Africa in March 1998.

~snip~

25 posted on 02/20/2004 4:52:31 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: Diogenesis; Just mythoughts; cyncooper
circa 1997 : (VALERIE PLAME OUTS HERSELF TO A C-in-C US ARMED FORCES IN EUROPE POLITICAL ADVISOR, WILSON, THAT SHE IS IN THE CIA, ACCORDING TO LATER REPORT BY MAUREEEN DOWD OF THE NY TIMES) Valerie Plame and Joseph Wilson both happened to alight in Washington, their jet-set schedules intersecting, and spotted each other across a cocktail party filled with foreigners."I saw this striking blonde," he recalled, still sounding smitten six years later. At first she said she was an energy analyst, but confided sometime around the first kiss that she was in the CIA. "I had a security clearance," grinned Wilson, then a political adviser to the commander of U.S. forces in Europe. - "Maureen Dowd : Ambassador Wilson and the Spy Who Loved Him, " NY Times, October 3, 2003

1997 : (WILSON RETURNS FROM OVERSEAS TO WASHINGTON AS SENIOR DIRECTOR OF AFRICAN AFFAIRS AT THE NSC) That same year [1997], Wilson also came back to Washington, as a senior director for African affairs at the National Security Council...A source, however, says that Wilson was not universally popular, because of what was perceived to be too strong sympathies for the interests of the Africans and Europeans. via FR's seamole, Jan 2, 2004*
* 1990s sometime in here : (WILSON WAS A CLINTON NSC ADVISOR) then later in the 1990s as a Clinton National Security Council staffer. - "The Honorable Mr. Wilson. Frog-marching into the history books.," National Review Online, NRO, October 01, 2003, 8:38 a.m. by James Robbins

JUNE 1997 - JULY 1998 : (CLINTON ADMINISTRATION : WILSON SERVES IN NSC) Ambassador Wilson served as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for African Affairs at the National Security Council from June 1997 until July 1998. In that capacity he was responsible for the coordination of U.S. policy to the 48 countries of sub-Saharan Africa. - Wilson's own bio (* My note: Did he begin in June or July 1997? Some sources indicate he didn't go to the NSC until July)

JULY 1997 - JULY 1998 : (CLINTON ADMIN: WILSON WAS SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO THE PRESIDENT AND SENIOR DIRECTOR FOR AFRICAN AFFAIRS AT THE NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL) - Wilson's bio at the web site of the Corporate and Public Strategy Advisory Group

JUNE 1997 - JULY 1998 : (WILSON ON NSC ; WAS ONE OF THE PLANNERS OF CLINTON'S TRIP TO AFRICA IN MARCH 1998) Ambassador Wilson served as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for African Affairs at the National Security Council from June 1997 until July 1998. In that capacity he was responsible for the coordination of U.S. policy to the 48 countries of sub-Saharan Africa, He was one of the principal architecs of President Clinton's historic trip to Africa in March 1998.- His own bio, http://216.239.53.104/search?q=cache:TjVOq4W4lssJ:www.cpsag.com/our_team/wilson.html+%22valerie+plame%22&hl=en&ie=UTF-8
(This web site is that of the CPS : Corporate and Public Strategy Advisory Group where Wilson is listed as "part of the team")

26 posted on 02/20/2004 4:55:43 PM PST by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge.)
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To: Diogenesis; Just mythoughts; cyncooper
The date Wilson claims to have gone to the NSC is curious because he gave two different start dates in different biographies- one of which would put him in the company of Democratic candidate retired General Wesley Clark.

JULY 10, 1997 - 2000 : (WESLEY CLARK BECOMES SUPREME ALLIED COMMANDER EUROPE - IS ALSO C-IN-C US EUROPEAN COMMAND) - Freeper Dog, http://209.157.64.200/focus/f-news/944219/posts?page=37#37, see also http://www.nato.int/cv/saceur/clark.htm

27 posted on 02/20/2004 5:01:12 PM PST by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge.)
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To: Dog
.
28 posted on 02/20/2004 5:21:20 PM PST by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge.)
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To: cyncooper
You have made each of your points convincingly, confirming
what was previously thought in each case.

Nonetheless, this was still a wrong decision by Novak,
and one for which there is not "plausible deniability"
even when it involved someone of such dubious value.

29 posted on 02/20/2004 6:21:14 PM PST by Diogenesis (If you mess with one of us, you mess with all of us)
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To: piasa
Thanks for the detailed info.
30 posted on 02/20/2004 6:21:57 PM PST by Diogenesis (If you mess with one of us, you mess with all of us)
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To: Diogenesis
I really appreciate your comment.

31 posted on 02/20/2004 6:41:41 PM PST by cyncooper
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To: piasa
Thank you so much. Now that I read through this, I remember this stuff. Clinton/African tour and National Security Council are oxymora.

Joe Wilson sounded and acted like Clintons advance team, like the ones that clear cut in the "rainforest" for the best photo opportunity. More like Clinton Security Council instead of National Security Council. A travel agent.


Clintons African tour was to me his apologize for America tour.
32 posted on 02/20/2004 9:49:52 PM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: Just mythoughts
From another source:

"At some point British intelligence obtained some documents purporting to show that Iraqi agents had attempted to procure literally tons of "yellowcake" uranium from the African country of Niger.

The documents later turned out to be forged. They weren't just forged, they were incompetently forged. The documents mentioned Nigerian government officials who hadn't been in office in years. There were all sorts of technical inaccuracies that made it clear that the documents couldn't possibly be real."

My question is, who forged the documents?

Is this another one of Ahmed Chalabi's stories?
33 posted on 02/21/2004 1:30:59 AM PST by fuzlim
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To: fuzlim
Considering the speed with which that forgery was exposed, it always looked like it was done by the pro-Saddam supporters.

Weren't the French first in line to expose it as a fake, if not they sure were trying to make hay about it being a fake.

Maybe old Joe Wilson had a hand in it.

If Ahmed Chalabi was involved, we would have known about that by now, I don't believe he was that popular in some circles.

We may never know who, created that forgery.



34 posted on 02/21/2004 4:17:39 AM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: Just mythoughts
Here's one version of the source of the yellowcake documents:

"Piecing the story together from two people directly involved and three others who were briefed on it, the tale begins at the end of 2001, when third-rate forged documents turned up in West Africa purporting to show the sale by Niger to Iraq of tons of "yellowcake" uranium.

Italy's intelligence service obtained the documents and shared them with British spooks, who passed them on to Washington. Mr. Cheney's office got wind of this and asked the C.I.A. to investigate."

Here's some more from a gent named Gordon Prather - nuclear weapons designer in New Mexico at the Sandia Corp - served in the Reagan administration as the Army’s chief scientist -appointed to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in the Nixon and Ford administrations.

"...What good would yellowcake -- a mixture of Uranium oxides -- have been to the Iraqis? Yellowcake contains less than 0.3% U235. You need uranium enriched to 90% U235 to make a nuke. You need to be able to convert yellowcake into uranium hexafluoride -- a solid at room temperature. Then you need to gasify UF6 and run it through cascades of gas centrifuges, tens of thousands of them. Iraq never had the capability of producing kilogram amounts of HEU, and what capability they had was utterly destroyed during the Gulf War and its aftermath and never rebuilt."

The documents themselves were so poorly forged that IAEA only took about 45 minutes after receiving them to pronounce them false.

One thing is sure now, no one wants to take responsibility for these documents. If I was head of the CIA I would be asking the Italians more about their source. As far as I know, there hasn't been any statement from them about the provenance of the documents.

Given the whole story and it's poor construction, I'll still put my money on Chalabi as the original source. Any attempt at forgery by a real player would probably have been of better quality.

Which brings up the whole question of the Iraqi National Congress...
35 posted on 02/21/2004 12:35:40 PM PST by fuzlim
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To: swilhelm73
I hear from pastry lovers that plame kerfuffles taste better than crumpets or scones.
36 posted on 02/21/2004 12:42:48 PM PST by Consort
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To: fuzlim; Just mythoughts
Actually the smart money is on the French government or someone within French intelligence producing the documents.

As we all know the French have a very close relationship with Niger's uranium industry.

The fakes were poor quality and the French government seemed to know pretty much right away they were fakes.

Much as it is hard to believe that Saudi employee Wilson was sent by mere coincidence and coincidently came back toeing the Saudi's line, it is also hard to believe that
it is a coincidence that these fakes were produced in the perfect manner for the lead anti-war power to disprove them.

For what it is worth a number of anonymous British intelligence sources turned up when the documents were shown to be false suggesting that this was the work of the French as part of their rather broad anti-American efforts.

Certainly the quality of the fakes here indicates that they did not come from a pro-war source.

Hostility to the INC in the press has been an interesting phenomenon. One has to wonder if there were more Saddam flunkies in the west then we now know of from the recent list of Saddam's 270 bought and paid for retainers.

We have already seen this with Ritter and his Saddam sponsored movie - a fairly brilliant way, if you stop and think about it - to bribe someone with minimal exposure.
37 posted on 02/21/2004 1:42:29 PM PST by swilhelm73
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To: swilhelm73
But what would be the motivation of the French government in producing the documents?

If they wanted to embarrass Britain or the US one would think they would produce documents that would at least try to fool them. But these forgeries were really cheap.

I mean, using the signature of a person who had not occupied the purported position for over ten years! Like someone said, a twenty minute search on the internet would have shown these documents to be forgeries.

As far as Joe Wilson and his connections to the Saudis, near as I can figure he was asked to research the truth of the documents, did that, and reported (privately) the documents were untrue.

What else was he supposed to do? Tell the CIA the documents were true?

I have to say I simply don't get the connection between the necessary motivation and the French and the Saudis.
38 posted on 02/21/2004 4:10:14 PM PST by fuzlim
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To: fuzlim
The exact point of making poor quality forgeries is to use them to tarnish any other evidence.

British intelligence still stands by their charge that Saddam tried to acquire uranium in Africa, and that their evidence is not related to the forgeries. However, that charge has been completely obscured by said forgeries. Therefore we see just how useful creating these forgeries was for the French government.

Had the INC or some pro-war group been behind them, as you reference, why not make them much more believable, and at least not make them trivially easy for the leader of the anti-war coalition to disprove?

All the arrows point to the same place...France. Considering the fact that at the same time France was attempting to bribe other countries to oppose us in the UN, and threatening would-be members of the European Union from assisting us, this kind of treachery is hardly out of place.

As for Wilson, well, perhaps he could have actually done an investigation, which he did not, as, again, he admitted. Sending a noted anti-war activist with no background in this sort of investigation, and ties to a government opposed to American intervention would be at a minimum criminal negligence by whoever sent him. This of course presumes he was sent with any sort of good intent of course.

As we now know, with Wilson claiming he has no idea who sent him...and could not identify the person if he had too...combined with his wife's boss's (probable) forced retirement he was sent on Plame's recommendation. It should be pointed out that originally he did not deny this...

She and Wilson should probably be facing charges of high treason, though the media has insulated them unfortunately, as part of their broad anti-war effort.


39 posted on 02/21/2004 5:27:35 PM PST by swilhelm73
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To: fuzlim
Do us a favor and please source your news clips by title/author or link. In this case, too much of what passes as news is based almost entirely on "anonymous" officials and as it happens, political sources, and way too much disinfo has already come from the same sources over and over, some of them regurgitating info which originally came from other news citing the fraudulent "CIA" source known as "T J Wilkinson," and most citing "anonymous" individuals who, judging by the cited language and word choice, are apparently just coming from Wilson or from his associate, Ray McGovern.

It helps to know in this case which reporter wrote what, because in this case, at least one of the journalists deeply involved int he story has a wife involved in the intelligence biz, as well as a very tight relationship with Wilson, and thus there are some severe conflicts of interest in the matter. Because of the political nature of the case, a number of reporters have been pursuing their own agendas and we need to keep track not just of data, but from who the data emerged.

40 posted on 02/21/2004 9:07:10 PM PST by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge.)
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To: fuzlim
"...What good would yellowcake -- a mixture of Uranium oxides -- have been to the Iraqis? Yellowcake contains less than 0.3% U235. You need uranium enriched to 90% U235 to make a nuke. You need to be able to convert yellowcake into uranium hexafluoride -- a solid at room temperature. Then you need to gasify UF6 and run it through cascades of gas centrifuges, tens of thousands of them. Iraq never had the capability of producing kilogram amounts of HEU, and what capability they had was utterly destroyed during the Gulf War and its aftermath and never rebuilt."

Maybe this source should ask himself why Iraq bought yellowcake uranium BEFORE. It did- this is an established fact. And it bought the stuff from various sources, in different quantities.

And of COURSE you have to enrich it, which is precisely why Iraq was trying to make more centrifuges, why Iraq had sought out expert help with centrifuge technology, etc. As Kay has pointed out - and as the Washington Post's reporter (Gelman?) totally misquoted him on- was that we still haven't found the high-tolerance tubes that Iraq had taken delievery on. We've found some of the low tolerance tubes- which apparently had the WashPost writer hot and bothered- but none of the higher tolerance orders have been accounted for. And Iraq's perpetual search for ever-increasing tolerances was what made the aluminum tubes so suspicious- the tolerances would only be worthwhile and neccessary if one were building centrifuges. That doesn't mean there aren't better materials out there for the task- it just means that's what Iraq could obtain.

(Note that these same sort of high-tolerance aluminum tubes have been one of the finds in the Iranian and Libyan WMD R&D programs, where no one is trying to explain them away as ridiculously overdesigned and expensive small rockets as they tried to do with Iraq.)

41 posted on 02/21/2004 9:55:53 PM PST by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge.)
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To: piasa
I don't really understand the concern about source. Anyone can do what I do and spend a couple of minutes on the internet. I'm sure reporter's have different motivation's but there are facts about the Niger yellowcake documents which are not in dispute.

Everyone agrees the "Niger" documents originated in Italy. As far as I know, Italian intelligence has not denied this.

Everyone agrees they were very poor forgeries. The IAEA realized they were false almost from the moment they saw them.

Everyone agrees that the signature on one of the documents purported to be that of a person who had not occupied the specific post for ten years.

Everyone agrees the contents of the documents were used by the US to bolster it's case that Iraq intended to build an atomic bomb.

Is there not broad agreement on these points?

What Joe Wilson did or didn't say or do is irrelevant. If he had come home for Niger and said the documents were printed on green cheese it wouldn't have made an iota's worth of difference to their provenance.

I really don't see what all the fuss is about. People seem to want to see a deep dark conspiracy where there isn't one.

The only story not yet told is who forged the documents?

We'll probably never know who that someone was, but we can make an educated guess.

We already have Ahmed Chalabi admitting to manufacturing evidence. Evidence of the mobile weapons labs was presented by an Iraqi intelligence service major made available by the Iraqi National Congress. He was "coached" by the INC, and later failed a polygraph test.

When asked about deliberately misleading US intelligence he shrugged it off saying, "As far as we're concerned we've been entirely successful. Our objective has been achieved. That tyrant Saddam is gone and the Americans are in Baghdad. What we said before is not important."

(You want references for that last bit, here it is - Jack Fairweather in Baghdad, Anton La Guardia in London - published in The Daily Telegraph - reprinted in the National Post February 19, 2004. Just in case you're interested in their provenance, the Daily Telegraph is Conrad Black's flagship newspaper. Black is the guy who employs Richard Perle and David Frum, former speech writer for George Bush.)

There is no conspiracy here. All we have is phony evidence that everyone agrees was phony.

If US intelligence chose to use evidence that was obviously phony that's their problem. If President Bush chose to use the same phony evidence that's his problem.

If they had just ignored the phony evidence and concentrated on the real evidence there would be not story.

Maybe next time they'll be more careful.
42 posted on 02/21/2004 11:53:21 PM PST by fuzlim
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To: swilhelm73
What Joe Wilson said or doesn't affect the Niger documents one way or the other.

As far as I know, the French have made no comment on the Niger documents one way or the other. They weren't the ones who publicized the documents so it's a little difficult to see how they would have profited one way or the other.

If they had exposed the evidence as cheap forgery one would question why they did, and perhaps arrive at your conclusion. But they didn't. As far as I know they've made no comment at all

All that needed to be done to prevent the damage done by these forgeries was to just ignore them. After all, they were buried for two years before they came to public attention.

The only reason they became part of the public debate is because they were used by the US and Britain as evidence of Iraq's desire to build a nuclear weapon.

What ever else, I doubt the French forced the US and Britain to use these documents.
43 posted on 02/22/2004 12:05:57 AM PST by fuzlim
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To: fuzlim
Everyone agrees the "Niger" documents originated in Italy. As far as I know, Italian intelligence has not denied this

Well, then you might want to look at this:

JULY 13+/-, 2003 a Sunday : (ITALIAN GOVERNMENT DENIES IT WAS THE SOURCE OF DOCUMENTS INDICATING IRAQ WAS SEEKING URANIUM FROM NIGER) The Italian government on Sunday denied reports that its intelligence services handed the United States and Britain documents indicating that Iraq was seeking uranium from Niger for a nuclear weapons programme. The denial followed a report by Italy's Corriere della Sera newspaper that Rome's SISMI intelligence services had given Washington and London documents in late 2001, showing the regime of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein had sought uranium from the African state. - "French link to UK's Iraq intelligence," From correspondents in London, news.com.au, July 14, 2003, http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,6749154%5E1702,00.html

I do consider sources to be important, as do many people here, since we have been watching how this whole story has been created and manipulated long before you even signed up on this web site. You'll notice that most people here DO cite sources. They do so for good reason- namely, that people can go to the source and read it in its entirety, in context. It's a matter of common courtesy.

Take, for example, the oft-cited line from Wolfowitz, "The truth is that for reasons that have a lot to do with the U.S. government bureaucracy we settled on the one issue that everyone could agree on, which was weapons of mass destruction, as the core reason."

This quote has ben cited in the press and by an assortment of leftwingnuts as 'proof' the administration's sole reason for war was WMD- or more specifically, just large stockpiles of WMD, since the press wants to ignore those drones, labs, etc and the sudden discovery by Iraq right before the war of some forgotten chemical shells they "missed", the ones they reported to Blix about 10 years too late.

Now, if you just saw that one part of Wolfowitz's quote, you might think the leftwingers have a point about what Wolfowitz said, particularly amid all the OTHER press mantras and misquotes trying to trivialize Iraq's programs or define them in terms of "stockpiles" rather than programs.

But take a larger excerpt from his interview and the impression of what he said is quite different; WMD is but one issue.

"The truth is that for reasons that have a lot to do with the U.S. government bureaucracy we settled on the one issue that everyone could agree on, which was weapons of mass destruction, as the core reason. There have always been three fundamental concerns. One is weapons of mass destruction, the second is support for terrorism, the third is the criminal treatment of the Iraqi people. Actually, I guess you could say there's a fourth overriding one, which is the connection between the first two." - Wolfowitz, May 9, 2003

The larger issue has all along been the support and use of terrorism and the threat of WMD as the tools of blackmail.

Another citation of why sources are important:

The Washington Post's claim that General Meekin was involved with Kay in the search unconventional weapons- this was the same article that raised hell about aluminum tubes.

In that case, even if we did go back to the source we still wouldn't find the correction- newspapers have a way of sticking corrections that trash their spin in obscure parts of their papers, if at all. The correction was delivered to the Post by Kay and Meekin when they wrote the Post to inform them their reporter mischaracterized what they had said and totally blew the story.

But at least being able to go to the original story permits the reader to gather info needed to check the story. And from that, the reader can find alternate views and corrctions. Individual readers can then determine how much credibility a given source or journalist has by following his or her reports.

The Niger affair is also entwined with the BBC scandals. So it's obvious that sourcing is important when reporters are playing political games.

Even from the beginning of this story, the media has played a central role in creating the story. There were claims Bush misled us into war because his SOTU speech included the reference to Niger, in spite of the fact that the decision for war was already made long before. There were claims that Bush said Iraq bought uranium from Niger when in fact he said no such thin. Quotes were attributed to that speech which in fact he never said in that speech, or anywhere else.

The papers lied about Cheney in this. Wilson himself has been caught fibbing, as have other reporters who it turns out were associated with him.

Some deliberately twisted what Novak said- turning "administration officials" into "white house officials," all for a political agenda. You wouldn't catch the transformation unless you had the sources and could see how one bit of info taken from one reporter's article is twisted by another who cites the first article but alters a few words her and there, and then his rticle in turn gets taken and altered yet again by third party papers citing it as the source.

This was also done with the Capitol Hill Blue article, which cited a fraudulent source claiming to have been in the Oval Office when Bush got the report that even Wilson admitted he didn't bother to write. The source turned out to be bogus. Yet by the time the correction was made, the news had been picked up intrnationally and then regrabbed by US major news- like CNN- but sans the name of the fake source, who was then cited as "CIA consultant."

Sourced info is important because it enables us to engage in oversight of the media. And the media desperately needs oversight.

Some reporters have been caught so much in their lies that their info must be questioned, while others have good records. It is beneficial to know who has a record of fairly honest reporting to who has a record for outright lying (Maureen Dowd and the BBC's Gilligan, for example.)

It's also a good idea to credit or link people with their work in any case whenever you cite it.

As for the Italy connection, there may be a connection to what Italy gave the UK, but what Italy gave the UK was apparently not the forged docs, and the UK didn't give the US forged docs. The UK's intel was based on other sources, since the UK wasn't aware of those docs until later, after exchanging info with the US.

By yes, there are some curious characters in Italy who bear some closer inspection. Like Zahawie's link to Father Benjamin at the Vatican, Father Benjamin's claim that he knew of 911 in advance, his Wilsonlike claims he tried to warn the italiangovernment, his past history of breaking the sanctions on Iraq, his leftwing associations, his ties to Iraqi officials, one or more of which did travel to Niger on a trade mission, and his having taken part in the bribefest Saddam Hussein was putting on using the Oil For Food program.

JULY 13, 2003 : (SOURCES SAY FRENCH SECRET SERVICE REFUSED TO ALLOW THE UK'S M16 TO PASS ALONG INTEL RELATING TO IRAQ'S ATTEMPT TO OBTAIN URANIUM FROM NIGER) The French secret service is believed to have refused to allow MI6 to give the Americans "credible" intelligence showing that Iraq was trying to buy uranium ore from Niger, US intelligence sources said yesterday.[July 13, 2003] MI6 had more than one "different and credible" piece of intelligence to show that Iraq was attempting to buy the ore, known as yellowcake, British officials insisted. But it was given to them by at least one and possibly two intelligence services and, under the rules governing cooperation, it could not be shared with anyone else without the originator's permission. US intelligence sources believe that the most likely source of the MI6 intelligence was the French secret service, the DGSE. Niger is a former French colony and its uranium mines are run by a French company that comes under the control of the French Atomic Energy Commission. A further factor in the refusal to hand over the information might have been concern that the US administration's willingness to publicise intelligence might lead to sources being inadvertently disclosed. (* My note: Since when is 'the most secretive administration in history' been 'willing' to disclose intel? More like the leakiest congressional intel committees...) US sources also point out that the French government was vehemently opposed to the war with Iraq and so suggest that it would have been instinctively against the idea of passing on the intelligence. - "French secret service 'kept CIA in the dark over Iraq and uranium' ," by Michael Smith, The Telegraph (U.K.), 07/14/03

JULY 14, 2003 : (COUNTERDICTING US PRESS CLAIMS, THE UK WAS NOT THE SOURCE OF THE FORGED NIGER DOCS- BRITISH INTELLIGENCE M16 HADN'T EVEN SEEN THEM UNTIL AFTER THE IAEA PRONOUNCED THEM FAKE) There had been a number of reports in America in particular suggesting that the fake documents - which came from another intelligence source - were passed on via MI6, the officials said. But this was not true. "What they can't accuse MI6 of doing is passing anything on this to the CIA because it didn't have the fake documents and it was not allowed to pass on the intelligence it did have to anyone else." - "French secret service 'kept CIA in the dark over Iraq and uranium' ," by Michael Smith, The Telegraph (U.K.), 07/14/03

JULY 14? or earlier 2003 Monday : (FINANCIAL TIMES REPORTS THAT UK'S INFORMATION ON IRAQ'S ATTEMPT TO PURCHASE URANIUM IN AFRICA CAME FROM TWO WESTERN EUROPEAN COUNTRIES' INTELLIGENCE SERVICES, NOT FROM FORGED NIGER DOCS) TWO foreign intelligence services, thought to be those of France and Italy, supplied Britain with the information for its controversial claim that Saddam Hussein's Iraq had sought uranium from Africa, the Financial Times newspaper reported Monday. Britain made the uranium claim in a dossier last September despite being told the US Central Intelligence Agency had "reservations" about its inclusion. The paper said its information came from senior Whitehall sources. US administration officials have criticised the inclusion of a reference to the nuclear claim and the nation in President George W. Bush's January 28 State of the Union Address, and pointed out that it had not been corroborated by Washington's intelligence network. CIA chief George Tenet, who took the blame for Bush's discredited prewar claim, has come under fire again with a leading Republican senator suggesting he resign. The Financial Times said it had learnt that the original information on the nuclear claim came from two west European countries, and not from now discredited documents that proved to be forgeries. - "French link to UK's Iraq intelligence," From correspondents in London, news.com.au, July 14, 2003, http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,6749154%5E1702,00.html

44 posted on 02/22/2004 1:42:32 AM PST by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge.)
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To: fuzlim
MAY 2000 : (IAEA FINDS IN JORDAN A MACHINE ORDERED BY IRAQ WHICH IS RELATED TO URANIUM ENRICHMENT ) The IAEA said that in May the agency found a filament-winding machine ordered by Iraq that had arrived in Jordan. The agency said the system was part of Baghdad's clandestine uranium enrichment program. The machine and its spare parts were destroyed, the agency said..” - Source : Middle East Newsline 10/18/00
45 posted on 02/22/2004 1:55:53 AM PST by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge.)
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To: fuzlim
I do not know who is responsible.

However, Chalabi - Iraqi National Congress forging documents would have been outed by the Saddam supporters from the liberals in our government, French, Russia, Germany last certainly not least BBC.

I do not know why you see Chalabi as most likely, unless you know something you are not saying.

What I have discerned thus far is that President Bush hold his cards close to his vest and the rest that are against US play their cards from many different decks.
46 posted on 02/22/2004 3:01:14 AM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: swilhelm73
I tend to support your theory the French had a hand it forging.

I have tried to watch the players in this WAR against terrorist. Those of free nations that put up their blood and treasury to rid this world of mass murderers have been assaulted by more than a wild bunch of killers.

This is no longer about a group of lunatic killers, it is a world wide conspiracy to take this nation down. The leftist liberals in this nation have not taken a stand to support this nation. Their words and deeds are in opposition to protecting this nation. I cannot imagine serving with my life in that land of Iraq and hearing what the leftist liberals here have to say about what is going on.

What also appears to have happened is President Bush has been able contain and control the lying liberals access to "intel". These liberals do not know what "INTEL" President Bush has and thus France, Russia, Germany as well as those terrorists have been walking blindly in the past 6 months.

Destroying President Bush's credibility is key not only to winning the election but to lessen the impact of the "INTEL" he has.
47 posted on 02/22/2004 3:24:57 AM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: piasa
I searched the IAEA web site for the Jordan story and found nothing. I also searched the MEN site and couldn't find it there either.

That doesn't mean it doesn't exist, but I wonder why it's so hard to find.

However I did find this story re: Centrifuge tubes and Iraq. This link was on the IAEA web site, so presumably they endorse it's conclusions.

http://www.isis-online.org/publications/iraq/IraqAluminumTubes12-5-03.pdf

Here is a quote from that story, which should give pause.

"Long before the war, the US intelligence community knew enough to raise serious doubts about the assertion that these aluminum tubes were specifically intended for gas
centrifuges.

Key experts of the US intelligence community and experts at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) contested the claim that the tubes were for centrifuges, which was being pushed by the CIA."

This is a very interesting article which should be read in full.
48 posted on 02/22/2004 3:11:32 PM PST by fuzlim
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To: fuzlim
I searched the IAEA web site for the Jordan story and found nothing.

That's odd that you had such a hard time with your search since I found not just one link using Google [and the key words "may 2000", filament, winding, jordan, and iaea] but several sites containing the information, including the IAEA's own web site :

[PDF] S Security Council
File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - View as HTML
... From 23 to 25 May 2000, the Agency was able to complete the destruction, in.
Jordan, of a filament-winding machine and its associated spare parts and ...
www.iaea.org/worldatom/Programmes/ ActionTeam/reports/S_2000_983.pdf - Similar pages

WMD 411: Organizations & Regimes
... safeguards system is defined primarily in Art. XII of the IAEA Statute, ...
In May 2000, the Agency completed the destruction of a filament winding ...
www.nti.org/f_wmd411/iaea.html - 65k - May 3, 2005 - Cached - Similar pages

Comprehensive Report of the Special Advisor to the DCI on Iraq’s WMD
... The UN Sanctions Committee “took note” in May 1991 of Jordan’s oil imports
... MIC with a carbon fiber filament winding and insulating material project. ...
www.cia.gov/cia/reports/iraq_wmd_2004/chap2.html - 515k - Cached - Similar pages

And so on. See this google link.

I find it interesting that you focused on Chalabi as well, since blaming him for everything is a favorite talking point of a certain class of troll.

49 posted on 05/03/2005 10:03:59 PM PDT by piasa (Attitude Adjustments Offered Here Free of Charge)
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To: fuzlim
No, the IAEA doesn't endorse the conclusions of every link it lists.

Some doubt the aluminum tubes but their reasoning seems to be only that it's not the most modern & efficient way to approach the problem of enrichment. Their assumption was that Iraq would only pursue the most modern and efficient means- even though more modern and efficient means would mean a much more difficult time acquiring materials under sanction. Their assumption is a bit naive.

But speaking of the IAEA [and aluminum tubes, incidently]:

SEPTEMBER 2003 : (FORMER NORTH KOREAN'S DIPLOMATIC REP TO THE IAEA,YUN HO JIN, IS ACCUSED OF ORDERING ALUMINUM TUBES SUITABLE FOR USE IN URANIUM ENRICHMENT FROM A GERMAN FIRM; MATERIALS WERE IMPOUNDED WHILE ABOARD A SHIP) HAMBURG, Germany (AFP) - A former North Korean diplomat is accused of ordering material from a German firm that could be used in the production of nuclear weapons, Germany's Der Spiegel reported in its Monday edition. The news magazine said a German businessman would go on trial in Stuttgart, southwest Germany, next month in connection with the case. The diplomat was named by Spiegel as Yun Ho Jin. It said he used to work as a Pyongyang representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna.
According to Der Spiegel, Yun Ho Jin ordered special aluminium tubes from the businessman which, experts say, are used to build gas ultracentrifuges in which uranium is enriched.
The equipment was impounded in April after being loaded on board a ship.
The unidentified businessman, who got to know the diplomat in the late 1980s, is accused of breaching trade export laws and "attempts to encourage production of a nuclear weapon."
Experts from the IAEA, the German foreign ministry and the German foreign intelligence service are expected to testify, the magazine added. - "North Korean diplomat implicated in nuclear plot: German press," Agence France-Presse, September 21, 2003

Which is apparently a result of this ship interdiction:

APRIL 2003 early : (FRENCH-FLAGGED SHIP "VILLE DE VIRGO" PICKS UP A SHIPMENT OF 214 HS ALUMINUM TUBES IN HAMBURG, GERMANY ) In early April, the French cargo ship Ville de Virgo docked in Hamburg, where it picked up a shipment of 214 high-strength aluminum tubes apparently purchased by the Chinese Shenyang Aircraft Corp.  Shortly after the ship left Hamburg, however, German intelligence officials learned that the true destination for the tubes was North Korea for use in its nuclear weapons program, the Post reported.--- "North Korea:  Pyongyang Uses Covert Approach to Acquire WMD-Related Items ," From Friday, August 15, 2003 issue.

You are aware that the way we outed Libya's nuclear program recently was also a suspicious shipment of aluminum tubes, aren't you? The editors out there in the press have generally been doing all it can to avoid using the phrase "aluminum tubes" with regard to Libya since no one can deny Libya had a nuke program in progress. Readers might defy the press's spin efforts and come to the conclusion that similar suspicious cargoes going to Iraq really were destined for similar rotors.

OCTOBER 2003 : (GERMAN SHIP CARRYING CENTRIFUGE PARTS IS DIVERTED ON ITS WAY TO LIBYA) THE United States... led an operation to seize uranium enrichment components from a German freighter headed for Libya that ... [would seal] ... Tripoli's decision to publicly renounce weapons of mass destruction [in Dec 2003]... "A ship was diverted based on intelligence it was carrying centrifuge parts in early October," State Department spokesman Adam Ereli [later] told reporters, calling it "a significant and important development". - "US confirms uranium seizure ," By Matthew Lee in Washington, News.com.au, January 1, 2004

***

Evidence has now emerged from Iran and Libya that Khan's program in Pakistan may be the source of the greatest level of nuclear weapons proliferation since the Cold War. UN inspectors who have recently visited a number of facilities in Libya discovered large amounts of aluminum centrifuge parts that had "all the hallmarks of the Urenco designs" stolen by Khan. Pakistan used these to enrich uranium before later turning to the more complex steel centrifuges.
A Vienna-based diplomat familiar with the Libyan inspections said: "The big surprise was that components found were almost off-the-shelf turnkey equipment. It was as if somebody had been shopping at Ikea and just needed to put the bits together."
The diplomat said this was unlike Iraq's secret nuclear program, which required large teams of scientists to deal with research issues and solve mechanical problems. He said: "The worry is that if a country like Libya -- with little industrial infrastructure and a small population -- could lay its hands on this equipment, then a large country might be able to set up a weapons program at a very fast pace indeed."
Libyan authorities have been helping the IAEA to piece together the "cartel" of middlemen feeding this clandestine network of nuclear know-how and equipment. They have been helped by the US seizure of a German-registered ship in the Suez Canal last October destined for Libya with thousands of parts -- believed to be Malaysian-made but based on Pakistani designs -- for aluminum centrifuges. ------- "In the radioactive trade, all roads point to Pakistan," THE OBSERVER , LONDON, Tuesday, Jan 27, 2004,Page 9 Published on TaipeiTimes, http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/edit/archives/2004/01/27/2003092649

AUGUST 2004 : (GERMANY : GERHARD WISSER IS THE SECOND SOUTH AFRICAN BUSINESSMAN TO BE CAPTURED; HE HAD BEEN A MEDIATOR IN OBTAINING AN ORDER FOR A SOUTH AFRICAN COMPANY TO MAKE & SUPPLY ALUMINUM TUBING TO BE USED IN AN 'AFRICAN URANIUM ENRICHMENT PLANT' ) Gerhard Wisser (65), the second South African businessman arrested [in connection with the Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan's suspected nuclear black market;][the first was Asher Karni, 3rd was Gottard Lerch, and 4th was Johan Meyer]. He was captured in Germany two weeks ago. He is alleged to have worked as a mediator to obtain an order for a SA company to make and supply aluminum tubing to be used in an African uranium enrichment plant;--- "SA link to nuke black market," By Graeme Hosken, PRETORIA NEWS, September 7, 2004, http://:www.pretorianews.co.za

And now take a look at this discovery relating to Iran, too- note it precedes the suspicios cargoes, now proven to be part of a WMD program, in Libya :

2001 early : (WMD : NUCLEAR PROLIFERATION : BLACK SEA : US & ISRAEL ALERT RUSSIA TO A SUSPICIOUS ALUMINUM SHIPMENT ON A RUSSIAN VESSEL HEADED FOR IRAN, TO POSSIBLY BE USED IN MANUFATURE OF ROTOR BLADES FOR GAS CENTRIFUGES) (snip) The officials said the two countries exchanged a series of diplomatic messages after the United States and Israel alerted Russia to a suspicious aluminum shipment on a Russian boat that was headed for Iran via the Black Sea soon after President Bush took office Jan. 21. [2001] According to the American version, Russian inspectors boarded the vessel and reported that the aluminum was intended for aircraft manufacture, an explanation not accepted by the United States. The shipment was allowed to proceed to Iran.
The precise origin of the aluminum is not known, but U.S. officials said the deal was arranged by a Russian metals trader. The officials said that the United States and Israel have evidence that the aluminum was delivered to Iranian institutions connected with what they suspect is Iran's nuclear weapons project.
The aluminum shipment is the latest in a series of nuclear proliferation disputes that have clouded U.S.-Russian relations in recent years. U.S. officials said Bush is expected to raise proliferation concerns with Russian President Vladimir Putin during their first face-to-face meeting Saturday in the Slovenian capital of Ljubljana without going into detail about specific cases.
"It's a big deal," said one well-placed administration official, referring to fears that Iran is experimenting with different ways of enriching uranium to produce bomb-grade material that would serve as the basis for a crude nuclear weapon.
U.S. officials said they suspected that the aluminum alloy delivered to Iran was intended for the manufacture of rotor blades used in gas centrifuges that separate out the enriched uranium that can produce a chain reaction for a nuclear explosion. U.S. experts say that Iran has been attempting to acquire centrifuge technology, as well as other technology for enriching uranium, for much of the last decade as part of a larger effort to build an atomic bomb. (/snip)
-- "U.S., Russia At Odds on Iranian Deal ; Bush to Raise Atomic Issues at Summit ," By Michael Dobbs, Washington Post Staff Writer via 14 posted on 03/10/2003 1:54:47 AM PST by piasa

50 posted on 05/03/2005 10:29:59 PM PDT by piasa (Attitude Adjustments Offered Here Free of Charge)
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