Tuesday, October 21, 2003
The very interesting Shystee Blog translates this July 19, 2003 La Republica story about the mysterious January 2002 burglary at the Embassy of Niger in Rome, Italy.
Through Josh Marshall a link to Seymour Hersh who reports a shockingly different allegation about the origin of the yellowcake intelligence:
A small group of disgruntled retired C.I.A. clandestine operators had banded together in the late summer of last year and drafted the fraudulent documents themselves…My source said that he was first told of the fabrication late last year, at one of the many holiday gatherings in the Washington area of past and present C.I.A. officials...The agency guys were so pissed at Cheney,” the former officer said. “They said, ‘O.K, we’re going to put the bite on these guys…The thinking, he said, was that the documents would be endorsed by Iraq hawks at the top of the Bush Administration... They would then look foolish when intelligence officials pointed out that they were obvious fakes. But the tactic backfired, he said, when the papers won widespread acceptance within the Administration…‘Holy shit, all of a sudden the President is talking about it in the State of the Union address!’ They began to panic. Who the hell was going to expose it? They had to build a backfire. The solution was to leak the documents to the I.A.E.A.”
If anything unites these interesting differing allegations it is the abundance of retired US, British, Italian and Iraqi military and intelligence people sprinkled throughout.