Skip to comments.Saddam Tried to Buy Uranium
Posted on 06/29/2004 3:00:58 PM PDT by swilhelm73
Illicit sales of uranium from Niger were being negotiated with five states including Iraq at least three years before the US-led invasion, senior European intelligence officials have told the Financial Times.
Intelligence officers learned between 1999 and 2001 that uranium smugglers planned to sell illicitly mined Nigerien uranium ore, or refined ore called yellow cake, to Iran, Libya, China, North Korea and Iraq.
These claims support the assertion made in the British government dossier on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction programme in September 2002 that Iraq had sought to buy uranium from an African country, confirmed later as Niger. George W. Bush, US president, referred to the issue in his State of the Union address in January 2003.
The claim that the illicit export of uranium was under discussion was widely dismissed when letters referring to the sales - apparently sent by a Nigerien official to a senior official in Saddam Hussein's regime - were proved by the International Atomic Energy Agency to be forgeries. This embarrassed the US and led the administration to reverse its earlier claim.
But European intelligence officials have for the first time confirmed that information provided by human intelligence sources during an operation mounted in Europe and Africa produced sufficient evidence for them to believe that Niger was the centre of a clandestine international trade in uranium.
Officials said the fake documents, which emerged in October 2002 and have been traced to an Italian with a record for extortion and deception, added little to the picture gathered from human intelligence and were only given weight by the Bush administration.
According to a senior counter-proliferation official, meetings between Niger officials and would-be buyers from the five countries were held in several European countries, including Italy. Intelligence officers were convinced that the uranium would be smuggled from abandoned mines in Niger, thereby circumventing official export controls. "The sources were trustworthy. There were several sources, and they were reliable sources," an official involved in the European intelligence gathering operation said.
The UK government used the details in its Iraq weapons dossier, which it used to justify war with Iraq after concluding that it corresponded with other information it possessed, including evidence gathered by GCHQ, the UK eavesdropping centre, of a visit to Niger by an Iraqi official.
However, the European investigation suggested that it was the smugglers who were actively looking for markets, though it was unclear how far the deals had progressed and whether deliveries of uranium were made.
Another treasonous left-wing lie exposed.
The democrats get the headlines Bush lied and then when the truth is exposed I have to wonder how many people really learn the truth?
That's part of our job; e-mailing this article to my address book.
One piece of junk to be corrected in an otherwise decent piece.
They claim the Italian letter was the cornerstone of the administration's claims about 'cake. However, what the President actually said was that British intelligence believed the negotiations to be ongoing. Britain has continually and steadfastly maintained that position, and this information only confirms what was said. The letter was NOT the sole source, and not even the primary source, of the yellowcake information.
The quote, directly from the State of the Union address is as follows:
"The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa."
But as we have seen time and time again, a lie told often enough gains acceptance as the truth. Such is the case with the Bush Administration's misreported reliance on the Italian letter.
Looks like someone did us a favor by outting Phame and her idiot husband. Was she getting ready to run interferrence for Saddamn, trying to throw investigators off the track of iraq's uranium ties? Seems like the CIA needs to start a full scale investigation into her contacts etc etc.
This and Putin's claims last week have been met with indifference from the MSM ... amazing. Sometimes I feel like I'm in the Bizarro World!
Can't be! Wilson, his CIA wife, and the CIA wife's boss say it isn't so.
Say it isn't so Joe </sarcasm
Question for Joe Wilson. Did you enjoy the effing mint tea?