Monday, December 10, 2007

The neo-cons strike back

The neo-cons strike back
By Khody Akhavi
Asia Times

"Neo-conservatives and former officials of the Bush administration have launched a ferocious counterattack on the intelligence community's assessment on Iran, and more pointedly at its authors - the officers whose goal they say is to undermine George W Bush's policy agenda.....

More importantly, the US intelligence community's belief that Iran was pursuing a covert nuclear weapons program up until 2003 was largely based on information contained in a laptop computer belonging to an Iranian engineer, said Jeffrey Lewis, the director of the non-proliferation initiative at the Washington-based New America Foundation think-tank.

Lewis said that media outlets erroneously reported that the laptop, which the US obtained in 2004 and which contained documents describing two Iranian nuclear programs, termed L-101 and L-102 by the Iranians, directly related to weapons work. He said it more specifically referred to modifications to a missile that would ostensibly carry a nuclear warhead.

"A lot of folks, myself included, have wondered about the reliability of the information. We've even taken to calling it the 'laptop of death'," he said. But it was the crude manner in which the documents were constructed that gave Lewis pause......."

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