U.S. Reveals WMD Secrets


fatman.jpgA U.S. government website intended to prove that the preemptive Iraq war was justified published pre-1991 documents from Iraq that weapons experts say are a blueprint for would be atomic bomb makers, according to the New York Times.According to Times reporter William Broad's story,

Last night, the government shut down the Web site after The New York Times asked about complaints from weapons experts and arms-control officials. A spokesman for the director of national intelligence said access to the site had been suspended pending a review to ensure its content is appropriate for public viewing.Officials of the International Atomic Energy Agency, fearing that the information could help states like Iran develop nuclear arms, had privately protested last week to the American ambassador to the agency, according to European diplomats who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the issues sensitivity. One diplomat said the agencys technical experts were shocked at the public disclosures.Early this morning, a spokesman for Gregory L. Schulte, the American ambassador, denied that anyone from the agency had approached Mr. Schulte about the Web site.The documents, roughly a dozen in number, contain charts, diagrams, equations and lengthy narratives about bomb building that nuclear experts who have viewed them say go beyond what is available elsewhere on the Internet and in other public forums. For instance, the papers give detailed information on how to build nuclear firing circuits and triggering explosives, as well as the radioactive cores of atom bombs.For the U.S. to toss a match into this flammable area is very irresponsible, said A. Bryan Siebert, a former director of classification at the federal Department of Energy, which runs the nations nuclear arms program. Theres a lot of things about nuclear weapons that are secret and should remain so.
The website, known as the Operation Iraqi Freedom Document Portal, included documents culled from some 55,000 boxes seized from the offices of Saddam Hussein's dictatorial regime after the 2003 invasion.While I hate to criticize the government for opening documents to the public, there's just something deeply ironic about teaching the world how to build the bomb in the process of trying to justify a war that didn't turn up the promised smoking guns.Also, isn't it the government's job to be investigating the New York Times for publishing sensitive information, not the other way around?- Ryan SingelPhoto: Life on the edge; Big Ups: RC
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