Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Niger Story Cracking Open

Want to know how forged documents about Nigerian uranium wound up in US hands? Josh Marshall tells us the forged documents were deliberately released by an Italian intelligence officer.

in late June there was a piece in the Financial Times which alleged various evidence for the proposition that Iraq had in fact sought to purchase uranium from Niger. The story also suggested that the 'security consultant' was himself the likely forger of the documents and that this 'scam' had only served to obscure the real evidence of the sale of uranium to Iraq.
...You’ll remember that most of the papers in the bundle of Niger-uranium documents that arrived at the US Embassy in Rome were actually authentic. It was only a subset of the documents --- those specifically related to the alleged Niger-Iraq transactions and a couple others --- that were bogus.
In late 2001, the SISMI officer brought the Niger Embassy employee a packet of documents --- those later identified as forgeries --- and instructed her to slip them in with the other documents she was providing to the ‘security consultant’ on an on-going basis.
She mixed those documents in with authentic documents which she had access to in the course of her work at the embassy. She then passed those documents --- again, a mix of authentic and forged ones --- to the ‘security consultant’. [to be sold to other intelligence agencies and the press]

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