Skip to comments.2002 Document: Request For 500 KG Of SODIUM CYANIDE A Precursor For A Chemical Weapon (Translation)
Posted on 05/23/2006 7:13:05 PM PDT by jveritas
On page 40 of document ISGQ-2003-00000847 there is an October 2002 document where there is a request submitted by Zoo Al Fikar Military factory to the Iraqi Directorate of Planning and Follow up for 500 Kilograms of SODIUM CYANIDE (NaCN), 15 tones of HYDROCHLORIC ACID ( HCL), and 30 tones of SULFURIC ACID (H2SO4). Sodium Cyanide is an important precursor to produce a Chemical Weapon called HYDROGEN CYANIDE (HCN) also known as ZYCLON B and the use of Sodium Cyanide with Hydrochloric acid or Sulfuric Acid will produce this Chemical Weapon. Although Sodium Cyanide can be used for other military and civilian applications its combination with Hydrochloric Acid or Sulfuric Acid will produce Chemical Weapons and knowing Saddam Regime obsession of acquiring Chemical Weapons and other WMD, this document has a lot of importance.
Beginning of partial Translation of Page 40 of document ISGQ-2003-00000847.
Zoo AL Fikar Factory
To: The Directorate of Planning and Followup
Your memo number 384 on 3/10/2002 we submit to you below our need of Chemical Materials to the year 2003 to take what is necessary with regards.
1. Name of material: Nitric Acid. Unit: Liter. Quantity: 600. Origin: Iraqi.
2. Name of material: Third Oxide of Chrome. Unit: KG. Quantity: 500. Origin: English/Chinese.
3. Name of material: Dye . Unit: KG. Quantity: 25. Origin: Western.
4. Name of material: HCL. Unit: Ton. Quantity: 15. Origin: Iraqi.
5. Name of material: Hylite Zinc. Unit: KG. Quantity: 500. Origin: Western.
6. Name of material: SODIUM CYANIDE. Unit: KG. Quantity: 500. Origin: Western.
17. Name of material: SULFURIC ACID. Unit: Ton. Quantity: 30. Origin: Iraqi.
End of Partial Translation of page 40.
This paragraph from MSDS website regarding the danger of Hydrogen Cyanide (HCN) and how it can be obtained by mixing Sodium Cyanide (NaCN) and Sulfuric Acid (H2SO4).
Exposure to 300 ppm hydrogen cyanide by inhalation can be fatal within minutes and lower doses can endanger life. The high toxicity of HCN was once exploited for the execution of prisoners in several US states; the HCN was generated as needed by dropping NaCN into a solution of sulfuric acid. http://www.ilpi.com/msdS/ref/cyanide.html
Acording to the Wikpedia; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sodium_cyanide
Sodium cyanide is used to extract gold and other precious metals from ore, and so metal mining operations consume most of the sodium cyanide production;
Iraq elected to develop a local capacity for thiodiglycol production using ethylene oxide and hydrogen sulfide obtained from its petroleum industry. By the end of the Iran-Iraq war, they had the capability to produce mustard gas without the need to use outside suppliers for precursors (although they still bought hydrochloric acid abroad because they could do so relatively cheaply and - by claiming a different use - easily). They were thus effectively immune to the opinions - and the sanctions produced by those opinions - of the international community.
Great post -
Calm your silly as$ down -
Do you have a link where you obtained this information? This is interesting that Iraq has a history of using hydrogen cyanide specifically.
The qty looks way too small. This qty is what I would expect for the supply of a production plating bath... silver, gold... Depends on the function of the factory though. This could be for some other chem production. If they were using this as a chem weapon, they would have bought much more, or produced it themselves.
Thanks. This is fast getting beyond my 10th grade chemistry class, so I appreciate the context.
Hylite Bright Zinc Process is used for Cyanide zinc plating per: http://www.metalquip.co.za/products_3.htm
Zinc Cyanide is a plating grade per the same web site.
From another website:
Cyanide zinc baths are used for steel and leaded steel substrates. The plating bath consists of zinc metal (1 to 4.5 ounces per gallon), sodium hydroxide (10 to 12 oz/gal) and sodium cyanide (1.5 to 14 oz/gal) with operating temperatures ranging from 60ºF to 110ºF. The pH
for such baths is 12 to 13.
Cyanide zinc is highly poisonous and corrosive to living tissue. As a result, concerns over environmental and occupational safety hazards have forced the plating industry to develop and utilize cyanide-free zinc plating systems.
Glad to have you back at the "translation desk!"
I'm sure Krappy Couric will have this as her lead story on the Today Show.
Reports have indicated that during the Iran-Iraq War in the 1980s, hydrogen cyanide gas may have been used along with other chemical agents against the inhabitants of the Kurdish city of Halabja in northern Iraq.
The amount of gas this qty could deliver is only 300lbs. If they're buy chems and using them for weapons some other gas is much easier, cheaper and more effective to use.
LOL...no. But cyanide is used for metal processing.
This is the one to watch for. Nerve gasses are just very powerful insecticides. You need oil products like kerosene to get there. NO2- NO3- make them easily absorbed just as nitroglycerin is absorbed by heart patients. NaCN can be mixed with any acid, including acetic acid to create hydrogen cyanide.
Would it work as cover for buying what they needed? Wouldn't they, if buying as a dual use, have to buy in quantities that matched the purpose the were claiming?
When metal plating is talked about, what would be metal plated? (just curious about that one)