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Context of 'Before October 19, 2002: Government Silences Scientists who Disagree with CIA’s Analysis of Aluminum Tubes'

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Vice President Richard Cheney and other senior administration officials receive two CIA reports that cite the aluminum tubes sought by Iraq as evidence that “Iraq… may be trying to reconstitute its gas centrifuge program.” Neither report mentions the fact that leading centrifuge experts at the Energy Department strongly disagree with the CIA’s theory. (Barstow, Broad, and Gerth 10/3/2004)

National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice learns that Department of Energy scientists disagree (see August 17, 2001) with the CIA’s assessment (see July 2001-2003) that a shipment of aluminum tubes intercepted on their way to Iraq (see July 2001) were to be used in a uranium enrichment program. She is informed that they believe “the tubes were probably intended for small artillery rockets.” (Barstow, Broad, and Gerth 10/3/2004)

Government scientists who disagree with the administration’s claim that the aluminum tubes were meant for a centrifuge program are instructed “to remain silent.” (Warrick 9/19/2002; Borger 10/9/2002; Collier 10/12/2002 Sources: David Albright)


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