von Joachim Gruber
Excerpts of a Talk given at Stanford University, Nov. 20, 1984
|Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction|
"... for the higher danger fuel commodities, plutonium and highly enriched uranium, the system's gatekeepers are four of the de jure nuclear states - the US, France, China, USSR/Russia - plus a single non-weapon state, West Germany/Germany."
"The network for higher danger reactors in 1985 - 89 has two clusters - one supplied by West Germany and one supplied by France."
"Enrichment equipment and plants for 1985-89 is a Hub-and-Spoke split between a Supply-Hub sub-network and a Demand-Hub sub-network. The Supply-Hub cluster is centered by West Germany." (see above figure. Uranium based nuclear weapons need enriched uranium.)
Excerpts from: Hunt Morstein J and Perry WD, Commercial Nuclear Trading Networks as Indicators of Nuclear Weapons Intentions, Nonproliferation Review, Fall-Winter 2000, pages 85, 86.
There have been traditionally strong industrial ties between Germany and Iraq (see also: Deutsche Hilfe für Schurkenstaaten). Since the beginning of the UN Oil-For-Food program, Germany has been one of the most significant representatives of the big industrialized countries in Iraq, leading before France, Denmark, Belgium and Italy (source: Internationaler Messe- und Ausstellungsdienst, Messe München, Germany, Baghdad International Fair, Germany's contribution in 2001).
Before the first Gulf War, 109 German companies have contributed to Iraq's armament (example).
"... [W]e have found people, technical information and illicit procurement networks that if allowed to flow to other countries and regions could accelerate global proliferation."Of related interest: CNN DIPLOMATIC LICENSE, Antiiwar Animation
In order for that to become the past, the German public, research and politics have to enter into a candid and informed discussion with German industry. Christian Democratic Union (CDU) leader Angela Merkel must have been informed during her visit to the U.S. about what we could do here. Her recent appeal to us comes late and must -unfortunately for Germany- be called courageous. But she as well as her party critics remain silent on this issue.
Until 1992, Germany's manufacturers did not fully comply with UN Iraq embargo and German export laws. For details regarding Iraqi procurement for nuclear, missile, and chemical weapon programs see
Techniques for targeting breaches of nonproliferation treaties exist.
Source of the compilation of German illegal activities is the CNS Database of the CNS SPECIAL COLLECTION ON THE IRAQ CRISIS, as excerpted in their "Iraqi Nuclear Abstracts" and "Iraqi Missile Abstracts", published by The Center for Nonproliferation Studies, Monterey Institute of International Studies, California, USA.
The analysis presented here gives background material related to the dangers connected with proliferation of weapons of mass destruction or of the corresponding technology.
This compilation is a follow-up of an activity in 1977 against the financial support provided by the German government. At that time the government had provided financial securities to German companies, amongst them Interatom, a subsidiary of the Siemens AG, to enable the sale of the complete nuclear fuel cycle to Brazil when Brazil was pursuing the path to nuclear explosives. At the same time Germany also sold nuclear equipment to Argentina, Brazil's rival. The South American continent was then -and still is today- nuclear weapons free.
Some of my Links on The Iraq Problem (more)
"The CNS Database is the most comprehensive open-source, nonproprietary database related to proliferation issues"
"Clarke is the former national coordinator for security, infrastructure protection and counterterrorism. He held the position in President Clinton's administration and continued for President Bush. He resigned in March 2003. His new book is "Against All Enemies: Inside Americaâs War on Terror". In the book he criticizes the Bush administration for failing to heed warnings about al Qaeda before Sept. 11, and for invading Iraq without evidence of a connection to al Qaeda. Clarke also worked for the Reagan Administration and the first Bush administration." (Of related interest: "TESTIMONY OF RICHARD A. CLARKE Before The National Commission On Terrorist Attacks Upon The United States, March 24, 2004")
As for the assassination of Osama
ben Laden: "Both Tenet and Berger are cautious, bureaucratic creatures,
well versed in the perils of the Washington scandal machine. Bureaucrats,
especially those in insular places like the CIA, have long institutional
memories. "For many years," Clarke testified last week, the top officials
of the CIA's Directorate of Operations "were roundly criticized by the
Congress and the media for various covert actions that they carried out
at the request of people like me in the White House -not me, but people
like me." Covert actions -äespecially anything as drastic as assassinationä
-was likely to "blow up in their face," said Clarke."
"... If Western powers sell the means to make horrific weapons, war is going to be the price we pay. Without a change in our export behavior, we will have to send our soldiers somewhere else to disarm another tyrant. Wouldn't it be cheaper - and more humane - not to create the problem in the first place? " (G. Milhollin, K. Motz, A Vile Business, Iraq Watch Bulletin 2, Issue 2, March-April 2003 and The Wall Street Journal, March 24, 2003, pp. A16)
" ... Before the Iraq war, chief U.N. weapons inspector Hans Blix said Iraq might still possess 10,000 liters of anthrax and 15 times the amount of gaseous gangrene-causing agent that it had declared to the inspectors. Both these deadly items would still be viable today if properly stored. Blix also pointed to new evidence that Iraq could have 6,500 more chemical weapon warheads than previously thought.
And let's not forget that when U.N.
inspectors left Iraq in 1998, they had compiled a frightening catalog of
Iraq's undeclared poison gas, including almost four tons of missing VX,
the deadliest form of nerve gas, and at least 600 tons of ingredients to
make more of it. Also unaccounted for were up to 3,000 tons of other agents
like tabun, sarin and mustard gas, about 550 artillery shells filled with
mustard gas and about 31,000 chemical munitions, both filled and empty.
"(V. Lincy and K. Motz, We
Still Face the Menace of Iraq's Hidden Horrors, The Los Angeles Times,
May 22, 2003, p. A13)
... By my count, [Secretary of State Colin] Powell made 29 claims [on the February 5, 2003 meeting of the UN Security Council] about Iraqi weapons, programs, behaviors, events, and munitions which at least in theory should have been verifiable once American forces had free run of the ountry. ... [O]n October 2 ... David Kay, a weapons expert appointed by George Tenet to run the CIA's Iraq Survey Group, testified before congressional intelligence committees. ...
- Kay says nothing whatever about 11 of Powell's 29 claims, which we may take as a functional equivalent of "not found." At the top of this list are
- the "100 - 500 tons of chemical weapons agent,"
- the sarin and mustard gas,
- the possible 25,000 liters of anthrax,
- the "few dozen" Scud missiles,
- the "wherewithal to develop smallpox." Not found.
- The cars full of "key files" being driven around by Iraqi intelligence agents? Not found.
- The "warheads containing biological warfare agent...hidden in large groves of palm trees"? Not found. The hundreds of documents signed by Iraqi scientists putting them on notice that death would be the punishment for anyone who talked? Not found. The factory with thousands of centrifuges intended to produce fissionable material for atomic bombs with the telltale aluminum tubes? Not found.
- It is difficult to convey the completeness of Kay's failure to find just about anything Powell cited as a justification for war. What Kay did find seems paltry and tentative. According to Powell, "a source said that 1,600 death row prisoners were transferred in 1995 to a special unit for...[chemical and biological] experiments.... An eyewitness saw prisoners tied down to beds, experiments conducted on them, blood oozing around the victims' mouths, and autopsies performed to confirm the effects." Kay found nothing so dramatic÷only "a prison laboratory network, possibly used in human testing of BW agents...." Possibly used? What happened to the 1,600 death row prisoners, the victims oozing blood, the autopsies?
- Powell said, "Iraq has produced [the nerve agent] VX and put it into weapons for delivery." Kay cites a "key area" where Iraq "may have engaged in proscribed or undeclared activity...including research on a possible VX stabilizer...." Where are the actual "weapons for delivery"? Where is the actual VX? Not found.
- In a few cases David Kay almost declares flatly that something isn't there ÷for example, that Iraq has had no chemical weapons program since 1991. Not just the weapons are missing; there has been no program÷for twelve years. But then Kay hedges. This conclusion, he writes, is based on "multiple sources with varied access and reliability"÷in other words, they could be wrong, something might still turn up.
- At the UN Powell had displayed schematic drawings of "biological weapons factories on wheels," adding that "we know that Iraq has at least seven of these...factories." Kay says only that his Iraq Survey Group has "not yet been able to corroborate" the existence of any mobile factories.
Note added 18 January 2016
THE RECORD ON CURVEBALL: Declassified Documents and Key Participants Show the Importance of Phony Intelligence in the Origins of the Iraq War, National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 234, Edited by John Prados, Posted - November 5, 2007 (in cache, 18 January 2016)"On February 5, 2003, Secretary of State Colin Powell made a dramatic presentation before the United Nations Security Council, detailing a U.S. bill of particulars alleging that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction that threatened not only the Middle East, but the rest of the world. Unbeknownst to the public at the time, a key part of the U.S. case - relating to biological weapons - was based on the direct knowledge of a single agent known as CURVEBALL, whose credibility had previously been cast in serious doubt. ..."
"According to both of the major official U.S. investigations into Iraq's weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs-by the so-called Silberman-Robb Commission and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (Note 4) - Powell based this particular claim on data gathered by the CIA, which in turn relied principally on information it had obtained indirectly from CURVEBALL."
Note 4. "Report to the President of the United States" by The Commission on the Intelligence Capabilities of the United States regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction, March 31, 2005; and "Report on the U.S. Intelligence Community's Prewar Intelligence Assessments on IraqÓ by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, September 8, 2006.
- So it goes÷no evidence backing Powell's claim that Iraqi military units had been ordered to prepare for chemical warfare against invading armies;
- no evidence that "Iraq undertook significant post-1998 steps to actually build nuclear weapons...."
- Did David Kay find anything that might be described as a weapon? Not really. The closest he came was to retrieve from the home of a scientist a single vial÷a "reference strain"÷of a biological organism which could be used to make a biological weapon, or ordinary botox.
- Of all the weapons cited by Powell in his UN speech only one was actually found÷sixteen empty munitions discovered by the UN inspectors in a scrap heap. The CIA had at one time worried that there might be 30,000 more, but Kay failed to find them.
- The conclusion seems inescapable on the eve of war, and probably for years beforehand, Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction, and it had no active program to build them.
Note added 18 January 2016
'Even if Iraq managed to hide these weapons, what they are now hiding is harmless goo', extract from Scott Ritter's new book, 19 September 2002 (in cache)
UN weapons inspectors are poised to return to Iraq, but does Saddam Hussein have any weapons of mass destruction for them to find? The Bush administration insists he still has chemical and biological stockpiles and is well on the way to building a nuclear bomb. Scott Ritter, a former marine officer who spent seven years hunting and destroying Saddam's arsenal, is better placed than most to know the truth. Here, in an exclusive extract from his new book [William Rivers Pitt (Author), Scott Ritter, "War on Iraq: What Team Bush Doesn't Want You To Know", September 25, 2002], he tells William Rivers Pitt why he believes the threat posed by the Iraqi dictator has been overstated.
Pitt: Does Iraq have weapons of mass destruction?
Ritter: It's not black-and-white, as some in the Bush administration make it appear. There's no doubt that Iraq hasn't fully complied with its disarmament obligations as set forth by the UN security council in its resolution. But on the other hand, since 1998 Iraq has been fundamentally disarmed: 90-95% of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction capability has been verifiably eliminated. This includes all of the factories used to produce chemical, biological and nuclear weapons, and long-range ballistic missiles; the associated equipment of these factories; and the vast majority of the products coming out of these factories.
Despite abundant evidence of the administration's brazen misuse of intelligence in the matter of weapons of mass destruction, the press repeatedly let officials get away with it. As journalists rush to chronicle the administration's failings on Iraq, they should pay some attention to their own.
George Soros: ... with all my experience, Iraq would have been the last place on earth that I would have chosen for introducing democracy. I mean, democracy has to be built painstakingly and very slowly. And, you know, I've been engaged in that now for the last 15 years.
Brancaccio: This is a place with bitter religious rivalries, with even recent history as terrible animosity between groups in society.
Soros: Right. So, it was a horrendous naivetÚ, actually, to think that you can go into Iraq and you can introduce democracy by military force. ... And I think the moment of truth has come in Iraq. Because we really got into a terrible, terrible mess, into a quagmire. And our soldiers are at risk. But it's worse. Because our armed forces, the Army is at risk. In other words, our capacity to project power that it has greatly diminished because we have misused our power. And I think that people will wake up.
"So there is a fair amount of scepticism about armed action [against Iraq]. That scepticism would turn immediately around if they [Iraq] used chemical weapons or biological weapons. My guess is they would not." Asked if Iraqi President Saddam Hussein's government would care if it was about to be overthrown, he said: "Some people care about their reputation even after death." (H. Blix, 19.3.2002).
- "Lessons for the Future
from "Monitoring And Verification in a Noncooperative Environment: Lessons From the U.N. Experience in Iraq", Monterey Institute of International Studies, The Nonproliferation Review: Spring-Summer 1996, Volume 3 - Number 3.
- Intrusive on-site access is a necessary but not sufficient condition for obtaining evidence of noncompliance.
- A multilateral inspection regime can be effective only to the extent that it is coupled with accurate and timely intelligence.
- Short-notice inspections can increase the likelihood that a violator will make mistakes and leave behind telltale indicators of illicit activity.
- The combined use of various monitoring tools (e.g. overhead surveillance, monitoring trade flows, visual inspection, and sampling and analysis) can yield valuable synergies.
- An effective way to investigate clandestine WMD programs is to identify and interrogate key managerial and technical personnel.
- Only one agency should be asigned all aspects of an international inspection regime.
- Effective verification cannot be based on periodic on-site inspections alone, but requires the integration of data from a wide variety of sources to monitor patterns of host-country activity over an extended period of time.
- In the future, the task of verifying nonproliferation treaties and drawing compliance judgments will grow more difficult as technologies capable of supporting deception and denial efforts become more widely available."
"... important differences between chemical and biological weapons limit the applicability of Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) verification measures to the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC).
For theses reasons, the threshold for militarily significant cheating, or "treaty breakout", is considerably lower for the BWC than for the CWC.
- The fact that certain microbial and toxin agents are highly potent per unit weight means that a militarily significant quantity is measured in kilograms, compared with tons for chemical nerve agents.
- Moreover, whereas production of a chemical arsenal requires a fairly large industrial plant, a stockpile of biological or toxin agents could be produced to order in a pilot-scale factory over a period of weeks.
Finally, the ambiguities between offensive and defensive research on infectious agents and the lack of well-defined indicators of biological or toxin production make it more difficult to distinguish between "treaty-prohibited" and "treaty-permitted" activities at dual-capable biological facilities. For this reason, assessing intent is as important as physical evidence in determining BWC compliance. Table 3 describes the differences between chemical and biological weapons and shows where these differences complicate BWC compliannce monitoring."
from "Verification Provisions of the Chemical Weapons Convention and Their Relevance to the Biological Weapons Convention, an analysis of the applicability of the CWC verification measures to a prospective BWC protocol" by Dr. Jonathan Tucker of the Monterey Institute.
H. Blix: Many Questions, 12. September 2002. Blix Says U.N. Weapons Inspections "Produced Little" Prior to War, 3 June 2003. R. Butler: Saddam's Continuing Deceit, 5. September 2002. British Dossier: Iraq's Military Plans for Use of WMD. October 4, 2004. Washington File: U.S. Has $154 Million in Aid Ready for Iraqi People, 19. March 2003.