USA: Problems with Saddam's Nukes

In 1998 Iraq was allegedly six months away from developing a nuclear weapon

The Washington Times news report brought to our attention recently says: The International Atomic Energy Agency says that a report cited by President Bush as evidence that Iraq in 1998 was "six months away" from developing a nuclear weapon does not exist."There's never been a report like that issued from this agency," Mark Gwozdecky, the IAEA's chief spokesman, said yesterday in a telephone interview from the agency's headquarters in Vienna, Austria.

"We've never put a time frame on how long it might take Iraq to construct a nuclear weapon in 1998," said the spokesman of the agency charged with assessing Iraq's nuclear capability for the United Nations. In a Sept. 7 news conference with British Prime Minister Tony Blair, Mr. Bush said: "I would remind you that when the inspectors first went into Iraq and were denied -- finally denied access [in 1998], a report came out of the Atomic -- the IAEA that they were six months away from developing a weapon. "I don't know what more evidence we need," said the president, defending his administration's case that Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was building weapons of mass destruction.

Henry Marconi Pravda.Ru Sydney