SPEAKERS CONTENTS INSERTS
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[H.A.S.C. No. 10746]
UNITED STATES POLICY TOWARD IRAQ
COMMITTEE ON ARMED SERVICES
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
ONE HUNDRED SEVENTH CONGRESS
SEPTEMBER 10, 2002
HOUSE COMMITTEE ON ARMED SERVICES
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One Hundred Seventh Congress
BOB STUMP, Arizona, Chairman
DUNCAN HUNTER, California
JAMES V. HANSEN, Utah
CURT WELDON, Pennsylvania
JOEL HEFLEY, Colorado
JIM SAXTON, New Jersey
JOHN M. McHUGH, New York
TERRY EVERETT, Alabama
ROSCOE G. BARTLETT, Maryland
HOWARD P. ''BUCK'' McKEON, California
J.C. WATTS, Jr., Oklahoma
MAC THORNBERRY, Texas
JOHN N. HOSTETTLER, Indiana
SAXBY CHAMBLISS, Georgia
VAN HILLEARY, Tennessee
WALTER B. JONES, North Carolina
LINDSEY GRAHAM, South Carolina
JIM RYUN, Kansas
BOB RILEY, Alabama
JIM GIBBONS, Nevada
ROBIN HAYES, North Carolina
Page 3 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOCHEATHER WILSON, New Mexico
KEN CALVERT, California
ROB SIMMONS, Connecticut
ANDER CRENSHAW, Florida
MARK STEVEN KIRK, Illinois
JO ANN DAVIS, Virginia
ED SCHROCK, Virginia
W. TODD AKIN, Missouri
RANDY FORBES, Virginia
JEFF MILLER, Florida
JOE WILSON, South Carolina
IKE SKELTON, Missouri
JOHN SPRATT, South Carolina
SOLOMON P. ORTIZ, Texas
LANE EVANS, Illinois
GENE TAYLOR, Mississippi
NEIL ABERCROMBIE, Hawaii
MARTY MEEHAN, Massachusetts
ROBERT A. UNDERWOOD, Guam
ROD R. BLAGOJEVICH, Illinois
SILVESTRE REYES, Texas
THOMAS H. ALLEN, Maine
VIC SNYDER, Arkansas
JIM TURNER, Texas
Page 4 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOCADAM SMITH, Washington
LORETTA SANCHEZ, California
JAMES H. MALONEY, Connecticut
MIKE McINTYRE, North Carolina
CIRO D. RODRIGUEZ, Texas
CYNTHIA A. McKINNEY, Georgia
ELLEN O. TAUSCHER, California
ROBERT A. BRADY, Pennsylvania
ROBERT E. ANDREWS, New Jersey
BARON P. HILL, Indiana
MIKE THOMPSON, California
JOHN B. LARSON, Connecticut
SUSAN A. DAVIS, California
JAMES R. LANGEVIN, Rhode Island
RICK LARSEN, Washington
Robert S. Rangel, Staff Director
Mark Esper, Professional Staff Member
Justin Bernier, Research Assistant
C O N T E N T S
Tuesday, September 10, 2002, State of Iraqi Weapons of Mass Destruction Program and the History of the United Nations Inspection Efforts in Iraq
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Tuesday, September 10, 2002
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 10, 2002
STATE OF IRAQI WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION PROGRAM AND THE HISTORY OF THE UNITED NATIONS INSPECTION EFFORTS
STATEMENTS PRESENTED BY MEMBERS OF CONGRESS
Hunter, Hon. Duncan, a Representative from California
Skelton, Hon. Ike, a Representative from Missouri, Ranking Member, Committee on Armed Services
Kay, Dr. David, Former United Nations Chief Weapons Inspector in Iraq
Spertzel, Dr. Richard O., Former Head of the Biology Section, United Nations Special Commission on Iraq
Page 6 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOCPREPARED STATEMENTS:
Hunter, Hon. Duncan
Kay, Dr. David
Skelton, Hon. Ike
Spertzel, Dr. Richard O.
DOCUMENTS SUBMITTED FOR THE RECORD:
[There were no Documents submitted.]
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS SUBMITTED FOR THE RECORD:
[There were no Questions submitted.]
STATE OF IRAQI WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION PROGRAM AND THE HISTORY OF THE UNITED NATIONS INSPECTION EFFORTS
House of Representatives,
Committee on Armed Services,
Washington, DC, Tuesday, September 10, 2002.
The committee met, pursuant to call, at 4:05 p.m., in room 2118, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Duncan Hunter presiding.
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OPENING STATEMENT OF HON. DUNCAN HUNTER, A REPRESENTATIVE FROM CALIFORNIA
Mr. HUNTER. The committee will come to order. Today, on the direction of our chairman, Bob Stump, the Committee on Armed Services meets in open session to discuss weapons inspections in Iraq with specific emphasis on the experiences of the United Nations Special Commission on Iraq (UNSCOM) from 1991 through 1998.
Today's hearing marks the first of a number of planned public sessions designed to educate and inform the committee and the American people on the various issues surrounding Iraq's continued violation of numerous United Nations (U.N.) resolutions, its illicit development of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), and the threat that Saddam Hussein poses to the United States, the Middle East, and the international community.
In fact, the committee received a classified briefing from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) earlier this afternoon after the hearing we just closed on Iraqi threats; and we will hear from Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld next Wednesday morning, September 18, on many of these same matters.
Our witnesses this afternoon, however, are Dr. David Kay, former United Nations chief nuclear weapons inspector in Iraqand, Dr. Kay, thank you for being with us today; Dr. Richard O. Spertzel, former head of the biology section of the United Nations Special Commission on Iraqand, Doctor, thank you for being with us today. We welcome you and thank you for appearing on such short notice. The committee looks forward to your testimony. But before we ask you to give your opening remarks, I want to invite Mr. Skelton, the ranking Democrat on the committee, to offer any comments he might have.
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[The prepared statement of Mr. Hunter can be viewed in the hard copy.]
STATEMENT OF HON. IKE SKELTON, A REPRESENTATIVE FROM MISSOURI, RANKING MEMBER, COMMITTEE ON ARMED SERVICES
Mr. SKELTON. Mr. Chairman, thank you very much and let me say a special thanks to our witnesses. Your being here will be very helpful to us. I know that the members will have some very pointed questions for you, and we are very grateful for your being with us today.
In the past week, the President has made clear to the Congress and to the American people his determination to remove Saddam Hussein from power and to neutralize the threat posed by Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. What the administration has not explained is the President's plan for achieving this regime change and disarmament and how these actions will affect the United States' ability to conduct the broader war on terrorism and other interests around the world.
Now, recent polls have shown that the majority of the American people support addressing the Iraqi threat, but that they prefer an approach that has congressional authorization, that is what we are about, and one that works with the United Nations. The polls show that the American people have questions about why we might have to use military force in Iraq, what the risks are of doing so and what the United States must be prepared to do in the long term to make sure that Iraq doesn't threaten its neighbors or the United States with its military or with weapons of mass destruction. I share their questions and have told the President this. We may well need to take steps, including military action against Iraq, in the near future, but we must ask the basic questions of ''Why'' and ''Why now?''
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The best way to get answers is through hearings such as this. And, I thank the ranking chairman, Mr. Hunter, for agreeing to these hearings. Before the administration and the Congress can decide on the best course of action, we must clearly understand the threat.
The witnesses before us today have both served on teams in Iraq and as part of the United Nations-sponsored inspections. Gentlemen, I hope you will both be able to help this committee and help us understand the likely state of the Iraqi weapons systems, what we know for sure about Iraqi capabilities at this point, and what information we do have based on imperfect knowledge. What will it take to know exactly what capabilities the Iraqis have when approaches short of an invasion and regime change could help destroy Iraqi weapons of mass destruction?
Any decision against Iraq must begin with answers to basic questions, and you can help us with answering those questions here today. And we thank you very much for your attendance.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Skelton can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you, Mr. Skelton.
I might add before we start, Dr. Kay, with you, that our chairman, Bob Stump, who directed that we have these hearings, would very much like to be with us today, but he is under the weather right now, and as a result of that, can't be with us. But, we all wish him the very best.
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And, Dr. Kay, thank you for being with us. The floor is yours, sir.
STATEMENT OF DR. DAVID KAY, FORMER UNITED NATIONS CHIEF WEAPONS INSPECTOR IN IRAQ
Dr. KAY. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. In the interest of moving this along and getting to what I know you are interested in, I submitted a statement for the record and I propose to make just the briefest of comments to allow maximum time for you to ask your questions. I think that would probably be the way that would get us through this afternoon by the most effective means possible.
Let me just start with a couple of very broad, general comments, because I think they are central to what you are going to be dealing with in your set of hearings. The first is to understand the wide extent of the Iraqi weapons program, and nuclear, which I will be talking about, that we found when we entered in 1991 and the extent to which it was a surprise.
I led the teams that went into Iraq initially after the war that discovered the enrichment procedure, the calutron, their initial centrifuge program, and eventually spent four days as a guest of Saddam's state in a Baghdad parking lot for my endeavors. The briefings we received prior to going in from national intelligence services both in the West and in the Middle East did not point toward any large Iraqi nuclear program. Indeed, what we found was a program that had employed over 20,000 people, had cost well over $10 billion, had gone on for longer than a decade, had 24 major sites, most of which were not known prior to the war, nor were they bombed during the course of the war. It was unknown.
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Now, the reason that is important is for two reasons, and it should warn you how much you can know from intelligence from the outside. But, second, it describes the task of understanding and unmasking such a program.
For Iraq, by 1991 when we entered the program, their nuclear program was not a program of facilities that you could destroy. Iraq had understood, had conquered, all the secrets of producing a nuclear weapon. They had understood enrichment technology, and they were well on their way to very large enrichment facilities.
I will never forget on the second mission at a facility called Al Furat, which would have been, if completed, if the war had not intervened, the largest centrifuge facility in the entirelarger than any one in Western Europe. Only the Soviet Union had a larger facility. This facility was not known prior to the war. It was not destroyed, not attacked, even during the course of the war.
The Iraq nuclear program is made up not of facilities. It is made up of a large technical group of experts who unraveled all of the science from enriching to fabricating the device, to getting a workablenot a design that I would be happy to see the U.S. any longer employ, but not terribly different than our first nuclear weapons design. This is a program that is in the fabric of society. As long as the government wants to maintain it, it will maintain it, and it is too large to extract by simply destroying facilities.
The second thing I think that experience has taught me is how one cannothow difficult it is to put it in a positive sense for national intelligence, staring from the outside without human sources inside a program, to understand it.
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Now, this isn't the first time we have learned that lesson. U.S. intelligence did not know of a very large Soviet biological weapons program conducted during the Cold War, which led to the Soviets putting smallpox on the ends of intercontinental missiles. The U.S. missed the size of the Soviet nuclear program by a factor of two-and-a-half. The program for producing enriched uranium in the Soviet Union was two-and-a-half times greater than the classified estimate at the end of the Cold War.
WMD programs are inherently hard to get evidence of where they are. And, the other point I would emphasize before stopping here is that in beginning to think about how one would describe Iraq's programnuclear programyou have to recognize serious impediments that all of us faced in trying to unravel it.
On-site inspection in Iraq carried out by UNSCOM faced a serious, organized, and I would say world-class deception, denial, and clandestine hiding program by the Iraqis. This had started before the war, and it certainly got better during the inspections as they played against UNSCOM inspectors. Even when we penetrated the deception and clandestine nature of this program at the final stage, we would then be frustrated in carrying out the inspection. They would block physical access to us and invite us to spend four days in a parking lot or outside a facility and deny us entry.
There is much about that program that we never successfully unraveled. As long as there is a government in power in Iraq that wants to keep an inspection service away from its prohibited programs, it will do it unlesstremendous resources, actually resources beyond anything I can imagine. And, let me just tell you briefly some of the resources that we had available.
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During the period that I was there and Dr. Spertzel was there, UNSCOM had at its disposal two helicopters to move inspectors around the whole country. This is a country that is twice the size of the State of Idaho. There were many sites we didn't visit more than once because we simply, logistically, couldn't put inspectors out there or couldn't put them out there faster than the Iraqis could move material around there. We generally had no more than about 100 people at the max in country as inspectors. We had gaps between when the inspection teams were there.
If you ask for evidence of where the nuclear program is today, there is a lack of physical evidence to exactly describe the state today, because the Iraqis have gone to great lengths to keep us from obtaining that physical evidence. But, what we can say with a great deal of certainty is, they have solved all the intellectual problems of producing nuclear weapons. They are facing some physical, technical production problems, but given time and money, which they have plenty of, I don't think any of us who were there doubt that they will solve those problems eventually as long as there is a government in power committed to having those problems. And that, for me, is the bottom line of where I come to, where should we go next?
If you are concerned about Iraq, an Iraq that produces and has nuclear weapons, even though I can't tell youand I will be the first to tell you, I can't tell you at what exact point in time they will have themthen you have to recognize, you have to deal with changing a regime. Saddam Hussein, for example, has forgone over $120 billion in oil revenue he could have had if he had simply complied with the inspection process and gotten sanctions off. To shield and protect that program, this is at the forefront of his desires for his political reasons in the region. So, it is a well-shielded and protected problem.
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Let me share and conclude with my worry. We have spentcertainly I have spent, almost entirely, my adult life worrying about threats to the United States that come primarily from states that have military regimes, size that looks very much like us, the Soviet Union and a few other countries.
We are now facing, and 9/11 should have reminded us, a group of countries that do not have military regimes that look at us, that may decide to come at us in very novel ways if we give them enough time. Training pilots in the United States, seizing aircraft, crashing them into buildings is a novel delivery way. Believe me, I can tell you, although I would prefer not to do it in open session, novel ways of delivering nuclear and radiation disposal devices that we never thought of because that was not the type of military we wanted to build, nor was it the type of military the Soviet Union decided to build to oppose us.
Iraq poses that tough problem of a country, if you give them enough time, the government remains extremely hostile to the United States and our allies and devotes tremendous amount of money to acquiring weapons of mass destruction. They will eventually surprise us in ways that will be terribly painful. And, in the area that I am concerned with, that is, nuclear, that means a much larger number of people potentially killed than were killed a year ago tragically.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I am prepared to answer questions.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you.
Page 15 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC [The prepared statement of Dr. Kay can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. HUNTER. Dr. Spertzel.
STATEMENT OF DR. RICHARD O. SPERTZEL, FORMER HEAD OF THE BIOLOGY SECTION, UNITED NATIONS SPECIAL COMMISSION ON IRAQ
Dr. SPERTZEL. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I also will attempt to be brief. I could simply say that I agree with everything that Dr. Kay has just said. Having done that, I will cite a few examples from the biological program.
The biological or ex-biological warfare program was among the most secretive of the weapons of mass destruction programs. It began in the early 1970s. It would appear immediately after or certainly within a few months of them signing the Biological Weapons Convention. It was organized initially under the Iraqi intelligence service, and except for a few brief years in the mid-1980s, it remained under the intelligence service and, later, the special security organization, including up through 1990-91, and probably presently today.
In 1991, Iraq's biological weapons (BW) program was in an accelerating expansion phase; and it was not obliterated, as stated by Iraq, and there is ample evidence that UNSCOM uncovered to support that. Its bacterial BW capabilities were well established, including its ability for production, concentration, spray-drying, and delivery to produce a readily dispersible small-particle aerosol.
Page 16 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Iraq had demonstrated an anticrop and mycotoxin capability and was developing a viral capability. It had developed both short-range and intermediate-range weapons delivery capability, and the agents included lethal, incapacitating, as well as agricultural and economic weapons, a well-balanced program. Interestingly, Iraq's aflatoxin was in its long-term carcinogenic and liver toxicity effect rather than any short-term effect. That is not something that a nation-state would develop for military purposes. Your guess is as good as mine of what they might have had in mind for the development of aflatoxin.
Their program, from the very beginning, included both a military portion and what appeared to be a terrorist application. Iraq's BW program, like the nuclear, was so well known by the intelligence service that not one of its production sites was hit by a single bomb in 1991.
Iraq still maintains and retains the necessary personnel, equipment, and supplies to have an expanded capability. Even after the destruction in 1996 of its major bacterial production facility, Al Hakam complex, the production team, the keywhat I would call ''middle managers''remained intact as a unit and began to work for the national monitoring director, which was the Iraqi equivalent to UNSCOM in Iraq.
It is my opinion that Iraq's greatest threat to the U.S., and certainly the U.S. homeland, is in the production of agents, bacterial agents, to be used by terrorists. They have the capability, they have the motive, and you know as well as I what their opportunity might be, because the terrorist delivery of biological weapons is something that, in my opinion, the U.S. Government cannot prevent from happening. All we can do is minimize the effects if and when such an event occurs.
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Like Dr. Kay, I don't care how good your inspectors are, if you have a regime that is determined to deny, to deceive, the inspectors don't have a chance. Even when Iraq was allegedly forthcoming with their program in July and August of 1995, the first team in to collect details of their program and in support of things they were saying, they supplied falsified documents. In December of 1998, one of the last BW inspections in Iraq, they presented as evidence to us, for a point they were making, a document that had allegedly existed since 1992, but in point of fact, it didn't take much analysis to indicate that it was probably written on the 9th or 10th of December of 1998.
I am going to end my presentation with a little anecdote. I am not particularly noted for my tact, and on one occasion, I couldn't take the lying anymore and I said to the individual, I said, ''you know that we know you are lying, so why are you doing it?'' And the individual very huffily straightened himself up and said, ''Dr. Spertzel, it is not a lie when you are ordered to lie.'' Where do you go from there?
I think with that, Mr. Chairman, let us get on with the questions.
[The prepared statement of Dr. Spertzel can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. HUNTER. Dr. Spertzel, thank you very much. Thank you for your testimony.
And, Dr. Kay, you have indicated they have the team that can put together a nuclear weapon and that that team is intact in Iraq. In your opinion, just from your knowledge of the weapons program and our interruption of that program and the capability of the people that they have in Iraq, the technicians and the scientists, what do you think in terms of how far away they are from having a system? What is your best estimate?
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Give us a conservative look and a more liberal look.
Dr. KAY. By training, I am taught to separate what I know from what I believe and from what I know, knowing it by methods that I would call part of the scientific tradition and my beliefs often from experience, so let me try to separate that out.
The key missing component of the Iraqi nuclear weapons program is exactly what has been the key for everyone who has tried to develop nuclear weapons. Nature did not make it easy for us to get the fissile material that is the explosive part of a nuclear weapon. There are two ways that Iraq has to do it, and there is ample evidence that they have explored both.
The first is a straightforward way of trying to produce it yourself. And, that is what they were doing prior to 1991 as their principal means of doing it. The best estimate I have seen and which corresponds with mine is one issued earlier this year by the German intelligence service, which said, based on the procurements that they had detected in Western Europe by Iraqi agentsand let me stress we are talking about those that have been detected, and what you don't know is what you haven't detected and that is what should probably worry you morethat on their bases it would take Iraq three to six years to produce enough nuclear material for one or two devices of the initial design that we had found. That, in many ways, is a conservative estimate because that initial design required a lot more nuclear material than the second or third design would require if you knew what you were doing; and these were people who wouldn't learn what they were doing.
The difficulty with giving you that estimate is, I don't know when that three-to-six-year period started. Did it start when the inspectors left in 1998 or is it starting, as some people would like to say, maybe not until today? And the bounding of that estimate is, we could be within that three-to-six-year period now, or it could start sometime later.
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I tend to viewand I stress this as a beliefthere is evidence for it and there is evidence missing, which concerns me a great dealwhen you look at their procurement activities, such as the recently reported aluminum tubes, but there have been others that have been detected. It strikes me that you are going after a program for which they are moving ahead already, so the three-to-six-year period has already started.
The second way of obtaining nuclear material is by obtaining fissile material that someone else has produced. And, in this case, the most obvious way is the insecurity and corruption that surrounds the former program of the Soviet Union.
I indicated to you that we missed, or the U.S. intelligence service misunderstood, the size of the Soviet program. I have dealt directly with Russians since the fall of communism. Let me tell you, they don't know how much they produced; and that is one reason that you have appropriated so much money for the threat reduction program to try to bring some security to that.
The frightening thing about that statementand we are talking roughly, let us say 20 to 40 pounds, if you want to use the English system of measurement, of highly enriched uranium, essentially less than a football sizeI have, based on my experience, no reason to believe that our or any other intelligence service, would be able to tell you whetherwhen they have acquired that, if they have acquired that. That would require the type of resolution that you don't get out of high altitude or satellite photography. The only way you would know it is if you had someone inside the program. So, that means they could have it at any time.
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Now, this would be a crude device. It would not be one that you would be happy to appropriate money for us having in our inventory. But believe me, in terms of the intimidation of one's neighbors and perhaps even an effective intimidation of the United States, the Iraqis might well be happy with one. How much would it take to have two, three and four? You are talking about amounts that depend on design.
Mr. HUNTER. What would be the killing power of that device that you just described?
Dr. KAY. Depends on where you put it and how you put it. A ground burst is the least effective way to employ a nuclear device. You would like an altitude that we had at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But on the other hand, in a port area like the Port of Long Beach, Los Angeles, the Port of Newark or the New York Port Authority, Norfolk, any number of places, interface on a ship between water and ground, it would be in probably tens of thousands, depending on where you do it.
You know, so much of this depends on the absolute employment technique. But let me tell you if you employed it in the Middle East, a single nuclear device going off in Saudi Arabia, the casualties would not just be in the crop dust from radiation from the device, the societies could not stand up to that sort of destruction and political threat. So you would have a sea change of immense size, just the threat of doing it.
As I said, there are innovative ways of delivering these that do not require ships, aircraft or missiles that one could imagine. So, that is what you are talking about.
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The essential elementI am sorry for being so long on thisis the imprecision of the estimate that you have to get used to dealing with. We have a government that is trying to deceive us and conceal the program they have and that places extraordinary stress on, whether it be inspectors or intelligence services, to try to penetrate that concealment and deception. Based on our failure to do it prior to 1991, based on our numerous failures to penetrate a Soviet deception program, I have no confidence that we will know in advance of their declaration or use of a weapon, whether they have it.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you, Dr. Kay. And, I am going to go now to Mr. Skelton, the ranking member. After we do that, I am going to ask our members, any member that didn't get a question in the last two-hour classified briefing, we are going to let them go and ask the next question before we move on.
So, Mr. Skelton.
Mr. SKELTON. Thank you, gentlemen, for your very pointed testimony.
You obviously had some success as inspectors. Can you very briefly tell us of the success and the destruction of any weapons of mass destruction or parts thereof that you found?
Dr. SPERTZEL. In your question, there was success, to start with, with the biological program; the admission was forced onto Iraq by the efforts of a special commission. I sat across from the biological people that Iraq presented to us in February of 1995 and laid out the U.N. position, UNSCOM's position, and that is that they had an offensive program that included weaponization and a lot more facilities than just a few that they had named. It took another five months of political pressure, if you like, through the Security Council, to get Iraq to acknowledge an offensive program on the first of July of 1995.
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And then, along comes Hussein Kamal's defection, and they expanded that and also, additional information on the other programs.
And, yes, we were able to destroy a few of their facilities, but that was offset, at least in a frustrating sense, by the information that we knew we had that they had imported critical material, including a 5,000 liter fermentation plant. And, with the names associated with that procurement action, it should have gone to the Al Hakam complex.
It did not. It was and presumably still is somewhere in Iraq, but in spite of having solid evidence of its coming into Iraq, we couldn't force Iraq to acknowledge it; and regrettably, the support of the Security Council by the time we obtained that information was waning. And, when you have two members of the permanent five (P5) who are probably more interested in economic exchange with Iraq than they are with eliminating the weapons of mass destruction, you can't have much success as a U.N. inspector.
Mr. SKELTON. Let me ask, in your opinion and from your knowledge, what is different today in the nature or urgency of the threat than was true some, say, four years ago.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Well, let me make a quick synopsis of four years ago.
As I indicated in my opening statement, that they had retained the people as an intact unit, they had developed the indigenous capability of making the necessary growth medium that they needed. And, when they were able to restore some of the mechanical shops that had been destroyed in December of 1998, they had the indigenous capability of making the necessary fermenters, spray dryers, centrifuges and so onin other words, everything they needed.
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Now, a number of things have happened, actually even before 1998, but certainly it would be expected to be continuing, and that is, in 1997 a couple of key people had some mysterious comings and goings. One of them was the dean of the College of Science at the University of Baghdad, whose nameplate was still on the office door, but obviously a cleaned up office; and Iraq claimed that they had no idea where this individual was, where I knew where she was. She was outside of Iraq collecting state-of-the-art equipment for genetic engineering, including the necessary materials, reagents, including restriction enzymes.
Now, at the same time, Dr. Hazam Ali, the head of the virus portion, suddenly resigned his position at one location, the Razi Institute, and was allegedly an instructor at the College of Veterinary Medicine, but when our team went there he wasn't there; they never heard of him recently. And then, the Iraqis told us, ''Oh, no, he was at the College of Medicine.'' Then he was at the College of Science and then he was at the College of Medicine.
We never really knew where the heck he was, but if we asked to interview him, they could easily produce him.
At the same time, another individual, the head of the department of biotechnology at the University of Baghdad, also had some strange disappearance from his laboratory. This is rather ominous to me. You put a first-rate biologist together with a couple genetic engineers, you can only guess what may be the results of that. You couple that with what is rather good circumstantial evidence that Iraq was messing around with smallpox and maybe they were trying to duplicate some of the Soviet studies.
Page 24 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. SKELTON. Dr. Kay.
Dr. KAY. Mr. Skelton, that is an extremely good question, and let me start with addressing what we destroyed because I shared with a number of other inspectors from UNSCOM and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) a considerable pride with regard to the accomplishments: the physical destruction of what was destroyed, that is, two major uranium enrichment processes using electromagnetic isotope separation and centrifuge process in which we destroyed immense numbers of buildings and materials. I remember two days, because I was worried that the Iraqis would steal the material after we left, of crushing centrifuge tubes and rings for doing that. A lot of physical facilities that then existed were destroyed.
What we did not destroyand, in fact, let me say we destroyed more physical facilities of the Iraqi nuclear program during the course of the inspection than were destroyed by coalition air power during the course of the war, and we destroyed many that were unknown to coalition air power during the course of the war. So, I have a great sense of accomplishment, and I share it with a lot of other people who played major roles in doing that.
But, let me tell you what we didn't do, and that is what worries me and gets to the second part of your question of why I am worried today more than I was four years ago. We didn't get the foreign suppliers. We were not able to unravel, and they refused to make available the full list of the people who had provided them the technology. We now know partly, because of what has happened in the last four years, some of those suppliers have been continuing to provide them with supplies. We managed to capture in the document for which we spent four days in a parking lot, we captured their initial weapons design, which is a workable design.
Page 25 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Now, this was dated two years before the date of that inspection. No nuclear weapons program that we know about has ever stopped with its first design. You get a design you know will work and then you start making it smaller, more effective and hopefully more resistant to accidents.
So my experience in Iraq leaves me somewhat dubious about their concern for safety. They refused to give up any additional design documents saying very plausibly and contrary to some evidence we had, ''Well, we didn't do any more design work, you've got it.''
Third, we captured some of the personnel records. They refused to give us a full list and to give us access to the people who had been involved in their program other than those that we discovered and knew about.
So why am I worried? I am worried because we see indications that they have continued their foreign procurement. We know they have kept the teams together and working in the same physical facilities. We know how good they are. And believe me, we had no authorityI would love to have had a stack of green cards to offer to Iraqi scientists and say, ''Come to the United States; you will have a good life,'' and hand them out. That would probably have been far more effective at dismantling the program than two days spent crushing centrifuge tubes. I didn't even have the authority.
And, Dr. Spertzel can tell you about the even more severe restrictions he followed, because I was lucky. I was in the early days and I could do some things he couldn't. I was limited in the interrogation I could carry out with Iraqi scientists, limited by international rules. I would love to have sweated themread them the Miranda rights, but then legally sweated them to find out what they really knew. I didn't know that. And believe me, if you ever worked on a weapons program, you know human capital is what is important. Destroy machines, I will just buy better ones; there are better ones coming on the market every day.
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And if you take the U.S. enrichment program and compare that to that of our European allies; we have in two gas infused plantsI hope they are not in your districtsdinosaurs of plants. The Europeans came later and they developed centrifuge designs that are far better at producing uranium than ours.
And let me conclude what really worries me. We did the Iraqis a tremendous favor by destroying what we found, in the sense we taught them what we could find, and they learned how to conceal, deceive and deny to us a program that is going to be probably a lot smaller, but a lot harder for us to ever have detailed knowledge of; and that is what worries me today more than it did 4 years ago. I hope that is responsive.
Mr. SKELTON. My last question is one that is troubling and unpleasant. In the news, we have seen the last few days, a fellow inspector, Scott Ritter, that is saying that this is not a threat or a problem to the United States or our allies.
Do you care to comment, both of you?
Dr. KAY. I don't know if ''care'' is the word I would use.
Let me notlet me just say that if you go back and read the testimony that Scott Ritter gave before Congress in 1998 after he resigned and compare it to what he is saying today, either he lied to you then or he is lying now. It is your choice. But his testimony on the Hill was a detailed indictment of the Iraqi program not at all dissimilar from what Dr. Spertzel and I are telling you today. He has gone completely the other way.
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I cannot explain it on the basis of the known facts.
Mr. SKELTON. Dr. Spertzel.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Pretty much the same thing. I have heard Scott make statements about theIraq's biological program saying it is 95 percent destroyed. Two questions come to mind; one is, how does he know what is 100 percent, because I don't, and I don't thinkI don't think any of the other biological inspectors knew.
And second, how many biological sites did he visit? Certainly, prior to 1999, the answer is none. He hasn't the foggiest idea of Iraq's biological, chemical, and nuclear program. That wasn't his forte; it wasn't what he was doing.
Why he is doing what he is doing now, as Dr. Kay mentioned, compared to what he was saying four years ago and what he is saying now, he is either lying now or lied to an awful lot of us four and five years ago.
Mr. SKELTON. You both have been very helpful. Thank you.
Mr. HUNTER. Let me ask folks on the second row who didn't get a chance in the last hearing to ask a question here.
Mr. Graham, did you ask a question last time? Why don't you go head, and we will go down to Mr. Allen.
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Mr. GRAHAM. Thank you. Appreciate you both coming.
In trying to absorb all this, you have a gentleman who served with you speaking in Baghdad today, and Mr. Skelton asked about that. And, if you listen to him, it is very foolish for us to put the world at risk by engaging Iraq in a decisive manner.
If we listen to both of you, we are stupid to try and even inspect again. And in all honesty, if we re-entered Iraq tomorrow, knowing what you know based on your experience, what degree of confidence do you have that anything would change in terms of us knowing the threat that Saddam Hussein presents to this country?
Dr. KAY. If I could start, if you entered tomorrow as an inspector, as long as the present regime is in power, he is determined to maintain its weapons program and engage in the deception and denial program, I have little confidence that we could find that program in its entirety.
Mr. GRAHAM. Unless Saddam Hussein changes who he is and the way he believes, it is a fruitless effort?
Dr. KAY. And that gets to my second point, in dealing with what seems to be a considerable difference between the testimony we have given and what Scott has said.
The best evidence I would suggest you look at is Saddam Hussein. If he had no weapons of mass destruction, why would he not let the inspectors in with full rein? And yet, we can describe, in chapter and verse, the concealment, deception/denial techniques that were used that range from physical intimidation and force all the way up to much more subtle and technologically sophisticated methods to conceal.
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If you are not engaged in a prohibited activity, why would you forego $120 billion of oil revenue? I think the best evidence that there is something there is the evidence of the perpetrator of the crime and his behavior.
Mr. GRAHAM. Sharing technology and weapons of mass destruction with terrorists, during your time in Iraq, did you find any evidence that there was a connection between Iraq and terrorist organizations anywhere in the world in terms of sharing chemical biological or nuclear materials?
Dr. KAY. I was not looking for it. I was looking for the origins of the Iraqi program, where they got their technology. I know of no evidence during the period of the inspections on the nuclear side that would indicate that. But, I must say, don't take absence ofI don't take absence of evidence to be absence of their being something there.
What Dr. Spertzel referred to earlierremember, when some of you were of the age when you have gone through with your children the answer, as they prepare for the Scholastic Aptitude Test, and it is hard to convince them that they ought to pay attention to ''D, none of the above.''
I don't know what 100 percent of their activities were because they engaged in activities designed to keep me from knowing what 100 percent of their activities were. So, we didn't observe it. That is all I am telling you.
Page 30 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. SPERTZEL. I would like to respond a little bit on the biology side.
We had suggestions, we were told categorically that that was not the mandate of 687 and that whatever information we got, we had to tread lightly and not make a point of having that be a primary purpose. However, in the case of wheat cover smut that program started, it was intended for what I would call ''agriterrorism'' against at least one of its neighbors with whom they were at war at the time.
Mr. GRAHAM. Last question: President Bush says that in terms of Iraq, time is not on our side. Do you agree with that statement? Do you believe that if we do nothing, five years from now he is a bigger threat or lesser threat?
Dr. KAY. I certainly agree that time is not on our side. When we talk about someone who is actively engaged in development of a nuclear program, time is not on our side. The acquisition of a nuclear weapon in the hands of Saddam Hussein not only would pose a greater threat to the United States and our friends and allies in the region, it would change in ways that are really largely unknowable.
The political competition, for example, imaginewe tend to view the Iranians as a threat against ourselves. If you ever dealt with the Iranians after the Iran-Iraq war, more than 500,000 Iranian young men died defending their country against Saddam Hussein's attack. The Iranian weapons of mass destruction program is designed as much against the Iraqis as it is anything to do with us. If we allow it to continue, you are talking about a major arms race in the Middle East that I find it difficult to understand the consequence of.
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Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman.
Mr. ALLEN. Mr. Chairman, thank you. And, gentlemen, thank you very much for being here. I appreciate your testimony, and I want to say at the outset, I do definitely share your concern about the Iraqi programthe various programs to develop weapons of mass destruction. It is clearly something we need to deal with. We have in Saddam Hussein, someone who can't be trusted, who doesn't play by the rules and causes problems in the region and for us all.
But, I wanted to ask you in particular about what I regard as the evidence for your conclusionparticularly, I will pick on you, Dr. Kay, because it is in your testimony, and that has to do with the attribution to Saddam Hussein of an intention to use weapons of mass destruction in the next few years against the United States. And let me just point out why this is important.
The question of how quickly we need to move is related not just to capability, but also to whether or not we can see it is in Saddam Hussein's interest to move against his allies or against the United States; and obviously that is a matter of judgment. We have to make a calculation, and there are risks involved in any judgment.
But the amount of time is an important issue in deciding what the appropriate strategy is. And in your testimony, Dr. Kay, you said near the end, what is clear is that unless we take immediate steps to address the issue of removing Saddam's regime from power in Iraq, we will soon face a nuclear-armed and -emboldened Saddam. With timeand we can never be sure of how long that will beSaddam will be able to intimidate his neighbors with nuclear weapons and find the means to use them against the United States. And you refer to the first use of these weapons against the United States and its friends in saying, you know, that is likely to come.
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As I put together the kinds of testimony we have heard here and what we have read in the newspapers, the Iraqi military is described as much weakened after the Gulf War. The morale of its regular troops, at least, is diminished. There isn't the same kind of capability there was before. U.S. and British planes fly over the northern part of the country, over the southern part of the country periodically attacking defense installations.
How do we get from a Saddam Hussein, as he is contained and hemmed in by U.S. and British air forces right now, to a Saddam Hussein who is likely within a short period of time not just to intimidate, but to use, particularly, nuclear weapons against either allies or the United States?
It is that leap that I have some trouble with, and I wonder if you could sort of give us any information, any evidence you have, to support the conclusion.
Dr. KAY. Well, let me address that directly and let me say we are talking about willingness to run risks and judgments.
First of all, I would suggest one should be careful about assuming that Saddam acts in a rational calculus that you and I would share. Quite frankly, I don't think you or I would have invaded Kuwait. It wasn't worth it; it was an extraordinary risk.
Having faced him and dealt with him on the ground, let me tell you, if you want to talk about evil, the way he has ruled his people with unconstraintI mean, one of the ironies of Scott appearing before the Iraqi parliament is that if there is ever an oxymoron that does not deserve to be in the same sentence, it is ''parliament'' with Iraq. He is not constrained by the normal political forces that you and I are.
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What worries me, and it is mythat reflects my belief that we should not run that sort of risk, that, in fact, once he obtains a weaponand I think the evidence is overwhelming of his attempts to obtain all of these weaponsif he is successfuland I have, perhaps less than you, not a great deal of confidence in the security system around the former Soviet Union. I am amazed that someone hasn't penetrated it yet
Mr. ALLEN. Can I stop you for just a minute?
I agree with what you are saying about him and the way he operates and certainly the way he operates in his own country. My question is, what evidence is there that Saddam Hussein is likely to make an offensive move against either his allies or the United States? Is there any evidence to support that kind of purpose?
Dr. KAY. I read his statements about the destruction of the state of Israel, and his support in supporting suicide bombers as an individual who, if he had the weapon, would use it.
I think if you ask the Iranians, ''Do you believe if Saddam had nuclear weapons at the time of the Iran-Iraq war, would he have used them?'' He used everything else he had.
I justand maybe I am reflecting 9/11; I mean, that is all burned into our consciousness. I would not run the risk of an individual with his track record having the ability to inflict tremendous harm.
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You might be right. We might be able to deter him. I don't think like ''mights'' when you are talking about nuclear weapons in the hands of people like Saddam Hussein.
Dr. SPERTZEL. I would like to add one thing on the bio side. You have to have an understanding from the BW side that a country like Iraq could conduct a terrorista bioterrorist action in the U.S. and have complete, plausible deniability. Trying to pin it down, an agent, as coming from a laboratory or even a country is a virtually impossible task. We may have already been hit by something that was made in Baghdad, and I am referring to the anthrax letters last fall. We still don't know who made the product. And I can tell you one country that had the full capability of making such a product is Iraq.
Mr. ALLEN. Thank you both very much.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you.
Mr. SCHROCK. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Dr. Kay, Dr. Spertzel, thank you both for being here and enlightening us and giving us another side of the story and, quite frankly, scaring us to death. Maybe that is what we need.
We have been consumed with this, it seems like, in this country for several weeks; you can't turn on the TV, pick up a magazine or newspaper without reading it. It is all we are hearing on TV. And clearly, we are dealing with a man who is a mad man and a regime that is mad, as well, and something is going to have to be done.
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But, those of us sitting on this side of the room are really agonizing because we are the ones that have to go to the floor and vote on some of these issues and vote on possibly a resolution supporting the President if he decides to go in there. And clearly we know how the President feels; he has made that clear. The Vice President is equally strong; he was on television all weekend doing that.
And General Powell, who is a retired four-star Army general who has been a little more reserved. And then there are a lot of retired admirals and generals who are very concerned about this, and they are saying we should not do it right nowmany of whom I know and worked with during my 24 years in the Navy, so I respect them in their beliefs.
I believe in preemptive and not reactive. I think if you can be pre-emptive, it is sure a heck of a lot better than trying to react. Just look at 9/11.
And I wonder, too, in my twisted mind, sometimes if we might not want to get the CIA to get a handful of people to go over there and take care of it for us because the thing that tears me the most is if we do this, we are going to be committing thousands and thousands and thousands of young men and women in uniform to fight this thing. Many of them are probably sitting right here in this room. I see a lot of students in here, and I look at them and think, will they be the next ones to go.
And we areand it is a huge commitment on our part. And I know I have to go vote.
Page 36 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC My question to both of you is, if you had this voting card and you had the ability to go across the street and vote, how would each of you vote and why?
Dr. KAY. Well, as you intended it to be, it is a tough question because it gets to not my technical expertise, but to my obligation as a citizen. In many ways you are at the same heart of Mr. Allen's question, which were also equally fair and equally tough.
But not to hem and haw around it, I think that, on balance, ''regime change,'' if you like that antiseptic termthat is, replacing the regime in Baghdad, and that is unlikely to be done by anything other than military forceis the only option we have for dealing with the weapons of mass destruction program.
I genuinely believe time is not on our side. These problems get worse. You have already seen in the pressand this gets to the reasons whysomething that we suspected in 1992, and we now have a little bit more proof that they proceeded in the way of a classic Soviet chemical weapons program and went to what is called ''dusty VX,'' a form of VX designed to penetrate high-protective gear, and probably ''novachuk'', agents which, in fact, you can produce with nonprescribed substances. That is an example of how they are progressing.
We know they tested two radiological dispersion devices prior to the Gulf War. They discovered what everyone who has tested a classical oneif you are going to be killed by the devices, by the explosion, not by radiationand I don't want to go any further than this in open testimonyU.S. labs and others know that there are other ways to disperse radiation that is far more challenging than the classic way. Given enough time, the Iraqis will discover what those other ways are.
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So, I just believe that when you are facedand this is notand I should have said this to Mr. Allenit is not as if we are coming to the problem of Saddam for the first time in September of 2002. We have had 11 years of experience. And when he failed to live up to his obligation under Resolution 687 and 11 other resolutions of the U.N. to get rid of those weapons, I have absolutely no reason to believe he is going to change his spots.
I simply believeand what is so extraordinarily hard for democraciesthat is, to protect themselves and risk the lives of their sons and daughters when they don't have overwhelming proof in the form of having lost the first battle. And I just think the consequences are far too serious this time.
But, look, I understand your agony, and I am glad I don't have that voting card.
Mr. SCHROCK. So you would not tell me how you would vote?
Dr. KAY. I would vote in favor.
Dr. SPERTZEL. And I very much agree with that. If there was a way of getting that regime to truly want to get rid of their weapons of mass destruction and no longer deceive or conceal, and if there was a way of getting the complete unconditional backing of at least the P5 members so that inspectors would have a chance, then I would say, go that way.
But that is not going to happen. You know, even the French proposal that has been madealready, China has indicated they are going to abstain and Russia hasn't decided, but they think they might veto it. That tells you how much support the inspectors are going to have. And I can tell you right now that the last year-and-a-half that inspectors were in the countrywhen we went there as a chief inspectorwe were on our own. We could not rely on being backed up by anybody, and yet we were there to face Iraq. And I don't see anything at all that suggests that the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) will face a better situation.
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There is no alternative.
Mr. SCHROCK. Mr. Chairman, let me make one more personal comment. When I volunteered to go into the country of Vietnam and my mother was very upsetmy dad understood, but he wasn't happy about itI couldn't understand their concern. And they said, some day, when you are a parent, you will understand.
My son was commissioned as an ensign three weeks ago, and my wife and I are now my parents; we understand. And I take that seriously, and I don't want to send those kids into harm's way unless we are doing it for the absolute right reason. And if we go into it to win and we don't play the Vietnam game that we playedbecause we didn't go in that to win, and we lost 55,000 great Americans. If we send them in this time, we have got to go in to win and then get it over with.
Dr. SPERTZEL. To me, the alternative is likely that you could have thousands, perhaps tens of thousands of American citizenswomen, children, elderlybeing killed by a terrorist weapon. And, frankly, if I were about 40 years younger, I would be on the line volunteering to go.
Mr. SCHROCK. If I were younger, I would, too. I understand that, and I agree with that. Thank you very much.
Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman.
Page 39 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Ms. Sanchez.
Ms. SANCHEZ. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and thank you, both gentlemen, for being here today.
I am going to ask a couple of questions, and the first one has to do with the cat-and-mouse games that you saw played with Iraq. And I would assume also maybe your insight into the mentality of Saddam Hussein and the regime thereI guess he is the regimein Iraq, because I think it plays importantly in the judgment we have to make.
And second, to your expertise in particular on the nuclear side of things: I have no doubt that Saddam Hussein is a bad guy, that he kills his own people, that he has chemical and biological weapons, that he used them against his own and used them against Iran in the war. But my question goes back to something thatreally what Mr. Allen was talking about, this whole issue of ''Why now? Why so immediate? What has changed?''
And one of the comments that you made, Doctor, was that we are not talking about a rational person. And my answer to that would be, yes, I would agree with you, except that when it came to self-preservation, i.e., when he was at the end of the war, he sat down and he agreed to terms that would preserve his ability to be there in Iraq, to be alive and to be doing what he is doing today.
So as irrational as he is as a human being, there is this sense of self-preservation. So I look at him and I say, he is sitting there in Iraq, we have him contained. I have no doubt that he has weapons of mass destruction, chemical and biological. I am not sure about the nuclear. If I were he, and I was sitting there, I would say, well, if I launch a first attack with this, everybody is going to come at me and they are going to annihilate me.
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Because I believe our armed forces and our capabilities are enough that we can take him out and anything else in that region that we want to. I think he is more contained right now rather than if he thinks we are coming in to get him, or we actually come across the line to come in to get him.
So why would you tell us to move, knowing what you know mentally about the person we are dealing with?
Dr. KAY. Those are very good questions. Let me tell you why I don't think he is contained now, or if he is ''contained,'' we have changed the meaning of that word.
We have gone from a period in 1991, when we had a fairly tight, sanctioned regime of keeping things out and controlling the amount of revenue he has, to an Iraq that sells illegally. I am not talking about the oil-for-food program, but illegally has greater oil income per day than it had prior to the Gulf War.
Dr. KAY. And is progressively getting accessaluminum tubes are an example, but some examples are better than thatgetting access to the technology that will make his programs even more capable and competent than they are today.
So as I see over time his weapon expertiseand let me say, I share and I hope I conveyed that, I share with all of youI don't know where his nuclear program is today with a great deal of precision because he invests a lot of resources to keep us from knowing where his program is exactly. But, I am confident that having solved those technical problems, and with money, it will only get worse and not get better. So, over time, I see it a harder problem to deal with. And quite frankly, I would suspect if his nuclear weapons programonce you have two, three or four, it becomes a shadow that allows you to do other things, use chemical and biological against his neighbors and know that we won't go.
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But you put your finger on the heart of the issue, and that is what sort of person he is and what does he care about his survival. We have a hard timelet me be sure I am not held by the chairman in contemptwe have a hard time believing that politicians mean what they say. If you read Saddam Hussein's statements about Israel, about the United States, about Saudi Arabia and all, this is an individual who, givenI am extraordinarily reluctant to believe we should give the awesome power and count on him being rational, to always believe his survival, and so he should threaten them and not use them.
And also, he is surrounding neighbors that are of two types, that I find we are not paying enough attention to the risk we are running. Most of his neighbors do not have enough military force to interfere in their own affairs. They are weak states. They depend on us for whatever security they have.
There is one exception as an immediate neighbor, and that is Iran, which is engaged in a weapons of mass destruction program for which we have a hard time bringing any pressure to bear, because I think in our hearts those of us who dealt with them in the region recognize that that program in part is designed against Saddam. I suspect if Saddam stays in power and his weapons program goes ahead, the Iranian program will go ahead, and that just becomes a very, very dangerous region.
The reverse of that, however, is true and we haven't spelled that out. A replacement regime for Saddam Hussein that is committed to dealing peacefully with its neighbors is a tremendously attractive proposition in the Middle East.
Page 42 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Rich Spertzel and I can tell you in great detail about our appreciation of the middle class in Iraq, of the dedication of the scientific and technical learning they have. Imagine what would change if we had an Iraq that was committed to some form of democracy, such as it might as in the Middle East, and living peacefully with its neighbors. What a challenge that would pose for the Saudis, a challenge to the Iranians. The reverse side is one that I would prefer to deal with: the optimistic, hopeful side of what it might be without Iraq.
And let me say in my testimonyand Mr. Allen cited a point right below itsaid Iraq is not Libya and that is why it is harder to eliminate the program. It is much more like post-Versailles, Germany.
But, Iraq is also not Afghanistan in terms of a functioning society that can be recreated. The ratio of population to oil to two river valleys, that for centuries have been irrigated, is a tremendous possibility for peace in a region that sadly needs it.
So I guess it is a personal decision. I would prefer not to run the risk of greater weapons in the hands of an individual like Saddam that attracts his neighbors either to cut deals with him or to develop their own weapons of mass destruction and try to deal with the future without him. I basically believe that is a lot better for our country and for his neighbors.
Dr. SPERTZEL. And I would like to add, if I might, that I guess one of my frustrations is that it seems to me that the decision is we either do something to change that regime's mindand if that means changing the regime, so be itor we decide we don't really care what he does and we are willing to live with it, because don't expect containment. It hasn't worked. Embargo hasn't worked. Those borders are as leaky as a sieve trying to hold water. We knew that. We saw ample evidence of prohibited items that we were finding in our routine inspection sites. And inspectors aren't going to do it for you without a change in attitude and without the unconditional support of the permanent five members, which you are not going to get. So the decision is either we do something about it, or we don't do anything. But then let's stop talking about it.
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Ms. SANCHEZ. Mr. Chairman, will you indulge me? The second question, it is a very quick answer from both of them.
Mr. HUNTER. All right. Very quick.
Ms. SANCHEZ. Nuclear knowledge, because you have it and I don't. An ability for Iraq to both have nuclear arms and a delivery system that comes here to the United StatesI believe, not talking about walking in through terrorism. Terrorism I put in a different corner. It is something we are at war with right now. How far away, in your best estimate would that be for him?
Dr. KAY. With regard to a weapon, a device that would work, go to a fissile yield if he had the material, my best guess is somewhere around six months. Months not years, I have said, to do it. If he has to develop the fissile material himself, I can do no better than the German estimate, which is three to six years, but doesn't tell you when the clock started running on that three to six years.
The delivery methodI am not talking about terrorism. A shipping container that has a global positioning system (GPS) device or a command device strikes me, if I send it hereI mean, we are locked into believing that the only way you can deliver weapons of mass destruction is ballistic missiles or high-performance aircraft. There are other ways to do it if you have a different model to do it. I think if he wanted to destroy Tel Aviv, if he had a missile he would certainly prefer to use it. But, I think he will think of other ways to do it, delivering other than a missile.
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I think in terms of his missile delivery program, the crucial ingredientthat we don't know enough about, but we have just got a little evidenceis foreign assistance. He has clearly gotten foreign assistance on his solid missile fuel production facility. We don't know exactly where that came from. If the sanctions come off the money runs. Could he get enoughI think that's end of the decade, nextsomewhere in the next decade for missile delivery. But I would hate to see any policy based on that as the only way you can deliver a weapon of mass destruction. For biology, for example, as experts will tell you, a missile is a lousy way to deliver a biological weapon.
Ms. SANCHEZ. I am not talking about biology. I am talking about nuclear. I am sure he has got the other and got a way to deliver it. But, to us here, not in a typical walk-across or the nuclear suitcase or what I would call a terrorism-type of situation, you are saying a decade away.
Dr. KAY. I am saying by missiles. But let me be clear. That was not the only way the Soviets intended to deliver it. And it is probably not the only way that he would think of having to deliver it if he wanted to. I don't call that terrorism. I just call it an asymmetrical way of facing the United States. We happen to believe in missiles. There is no reason everyone else should believe in missiles.
Ms. SANCHEZ. And quickly, Doctor, because my chairman
Dr. SPERTZEL. Well, again, it might be a covert delivery system as opposed to overt. Whether you call that terrorism or not is something else. But I couldagain I would prefer not to in open session, but I could tell you ways that I suspect, even with our enhanced sensitivity to security, that a determined enemy could deliver an effective biological weapon or agent, particularly to our coastal cities.
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Ms. SANCHEZ. Thank you, Doctor. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Thank you very much. And I think when you reflect on the fact that we have got in excess of 6,000 cargo containers coming into our ports daily and we inspect around three percent of them, there is a fairly large pool of candidate vehicles for that.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and thank you, gentlemen, for being here to testify before us. You know, right now, our country is in a war on terrorism. The American people are behind our President, I believe, on this war and they seem to be open to what we do. Our allies seem to be in agreement with us on the war on terrorism.
With that in mind, Dr. Spertzel, in your opening statement, not your written, but in your opening statement, you made a comment that the greatest threat to the U.S. is in, ''biological agents to be used by terrorists.'' However, when the question was asked about terrorism, Dr. Kay, I believe you said we had no evidence that there was any real linkage between Iraq and the terrorists.
Dr. KAY. On the nuclear; I was speaking only of nuclear.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. Okay. Do we have any evidence then, Dr. Spertzel, that there is any linkage between Iraq and the terrorists?
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Dr. SPERTZEL. Yes. Terroristterrorism was clearly an integral part of the Iraqi BW program from its very inception in the early 1970s. The nature of the agents, some of the studies that they were conducting clearly indicated that. The evidence is still not concrete yet, but I believe that doctor Christine Gosden is collecting pretty doggone good evidence that Iraq has used aflatoxin against the Kurds in the north and may be still using it. And I already mentioned the case of wheat cover smut, or wheat bunt as we know it in the U.S., by clandestine delivery means. And they acknowledge that it wasthat they envisioned it; they called it ''secretive delivery.'' I think that was a euphemism for terrorists. So you have that.
And then, as I say, I happenand I don't believe I am a lone individual anymore because I think I have made a few converts who happen to believe that that high-quality anthrax spore material last fall very likely has ''made in Baghdad'' written on it.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. It is all just hypothetical, though. No evidence.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Oh, yeah, if you are looking for a smoking gun
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. I am.
Dr. SPERTZEL [continuing]. I can absolutely guarantee you, you will not find it. Not now, not in the future. The technology for finding that smoking gun, at least in the biology field, is not there. Absolutely will not find it.
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Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. So we would be asked in Congress to vote on going into Iraq based on total speculation?
Dr. SPERTZEL. That is one way of looking at it. I mean, you know, you do an assessment based on the best information. I mean that is the way we finally forced Iraq to acknowledge their BW program. It was an assessment of the information, admittedly sketchy, but it seemed to make a cohesive story. And that is what you have to act on. It is a value judgment. There is no way around it.
Dr. KAY. Mrs. Davis, if I could add, I have certainly been inarticulate if I have indicated that this is based on simply speculation. We have 11 years of the physical reality of Iraq trying to conceal its weapons program. We have the physical reality of what was discovered in spite of that concealment program. It was not what either Dr. Spertzel or I would have liked to have discovered. We would have liked to have discovered more. But in terms of their weapons capability and weapons programs, those are solid-reality physical evidence, of which we have produced tons of documents.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. Dr. Kay, for the record I am with you on going into Iraq. The problem I have is to go back to my constituents and tell them why.
Dr. KAY. No. If I indicated speculation, that is not the basis I would ever urge anyone to do. I think there is a lot of real physical evidence there.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. On the nuclear weapons I agree, but I was going back to the comment that Dr. Spertzel made about the greatest threat to the U.S. is the biological agents to be used as terrorists, and I just wanted that clarified.
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Dr. SPERTZEL. Again, as I have indicated, you know, the fact that we know that that was an integral part of their program to start with. I am very concerned about that consortium, if you like, between the three individuals that I named earlier, as related to some obviously clandestine genetic engineering. Otherwise they had no reason to lie to us. I mean, if it was a program there would be no objection to, they could have told us where these people were working and that would have been the end of it.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. I just hoped you had a little bit more information to give me, that was all.
Dr. KAY. So do we.
Dr. SPERTZEL. So do we.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. But I agree, he is a bad guy and we need to go forward and do something to protect our Americans here.
I thank you, Mr. Chairman. Thank you, gentlemen.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you. Mr. Rodriguez.
Mr. RODRIGUEZ. Thank you very much.
Dr. Kay, I was interested to hear your comments that you made regarding our missile defense, the thought that that might be the worst way of delivering this system. I know that disproportionately we mightwe kick in a good amount of resources into that area in which I, you knowmaybe I know that this should go into other methods of fighting terrorism instead of our major national missile defense system. But thank you for that comment.
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Let me ask you, I have always applied the principle that if our national security is in danger and that we are directly in danger that we ought to act unilaterally and just strike, but that if it isn't, then every effort needs to be made to look at it from a multilateral perspective and to reach out to your friends and allies. I have been real concerned with what the Germans havethe chancellor has said about the lack of discussions with them, the French and everyone else.
And I was wondering how you wouldyou know, make some comments as it relates to that. But also, if you would be willing to look at if you had a team of inspectors that could go in there and have full access, if you would feel comfortable under those settings.
Dr. KAY. Well let me deal with the two-part question. With regard to having allies, look, I was a 97-pound kid who grew up on the east side of Houston. I always found it was useful to have friends. It insured my survival; that, and being able to run fast. So in principle, I think one would like to have it. I think during the period that started when Iabout the time I left, it certainly was much worse during most of Dr. Spertzel's timeyou had a number of Security Council members decide that if it were a serious problem the U.S. would take care of it. If it is not a serious problem, why shouldn't we go ahead and make economic hay while we can?
And so I think we have failed to convince the world that it is their problem as well, and not just our problem. This is one of the problems of being the last superpower. You know, why did the Europeans wait around for us to straighten out Kosovo? It was in their back yard. So I mean, I think there is a large element of that. I think we lost the psychological war of trying to explain that and explaining that it was not sanctions and inspections that were hurting the Iraq people; it was Saddam's behavior. So on that issue, I mean I am with you. I would rather have more, rather than
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Your second question is the question that is an extraordinarily troubling question for me, because the question is if we had inspectors in again, wouldn't you feel that they could do it. The issue is not the insertion of inspectors; the issue is the behavior of the Iraqi Government. As long as Iraq can continue to engage in protecting its programs, concealing, denying, and deceiving about those programs, the level of intrusiveness that would be necessary to overcome that, and the resources, wouldn't look, quite frankly, any different than an occupation.
You know, we had two helicopters at our disposal. I came back to the U.S. and I found TV stations that had bigger and better helicopters for traffic reporting. The amount of resources and inspectors you would have to put in to have confidence that you have eliminated a program that they spent two decades on, probably $40 billion if we were to sum all their programs, and 40,000 people, to be sure you really got thatand I don't know what you mean by getting it when we are talking about people as much as things. I just don't see that the mental image I have of that is very much like an occupation. So I don't have any confidence that you can get there by the inspection route.
Mr. SPERTZEL. And what happens if inspectors are there, ostensibly unlimited access, if they come along on a particularly sensitive site and so there is another standoff? What is going to happen? What is the next step? Are we going to have a week-long debate among the permanent five members, and then two of them will abstain and the third one will make some modifications to the resolution to the point that it is not much better than distilled water? What have you accomplished?
Dr. KAY. Very often when you get those standoffs, as Dick knows, you are at a point where you are asked the same questions you ask us. ''What is the evidence that that is an important place?'' And because they are trying to conceal from you and mislead youand let me give you, Mr. Rodriguez, an actual example that occurred to me. The second inspection I took in, we had a supposed defector who came in and said they had buried nuclear materials in the central Baghdad cemetery. Now, you know, I am from Texas. I am willing to do a lot of things. Digging up cemeteries is one of those things that I have got to have a lot of evidence on. It was, we later found out, and penetratedthank goodness I had a little bit of my mother's common sense and didn't carry out an inspection. It was a provocation they ran against the team, hoping we would dig up the central Baghdad cemetery, hunting for something that wasn't there, but would have meant great television footage not in favor of us. It was referred to as a cat-and-mouse game. I have never liked that term because when you are the mouse it is not much fun. The cat has a lot more fun, and the inspectors were the mouse.
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We are talking about disputes when we are going to be asked the same questions about evidence. There may in fact be nothing there, because they have carried out a successful provocation. As long as that government is not willing to give up its weapons of mass destruction program, it just is not credible that inspectors, by themselves, will be able to do that against their determined opponent. If Saddam changes his spots and becomes an enlightened leader of the Middle East
Mr. SPERTZEL. On another occasion, one of the things that didn't make the headlines was a team was stopped only for a few hours, and they sat there and they watched with binoculars two little fires on the roof of the building, which turned out to be an asphalt roof. And when they, Iraq, was asked about those fires, ''oh, the janitor was just burning the trash for the day.'' Yeah, right. We all go around doing that on asphalt roofs.
Now, I have no idea what was in those documents that they burned, but I sure wish I did. And, that is what inspection teams are faced with when there is not a desire on the part of the country and when you cannot rely on having any backup.
Mr. RODRIGUEZ. Let meI just want to go throw it back to the analogy, Dr. Kay, that you mentioned. If you had beenthat you were a 90-pound weakling and you needed support.
Dr. KAY. Ninety-four pounds.
Mr. RODRIGUEZ. You know, that concerns me. And if you are a pretty healthy individual, does that mean that we should act like a big bully and not reach out?
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Dr. KAY. No, it means we shouldI mean, my interpretation is I still believe in getting as many friends to go to a fight as I can, if I have to fight. But, I also believe in not bringing a knife to a knife fight. I like odds that are in my favor and not against.
Mr. RODRIGUEZ. Yeah. One of the struggles that we are having is that you are extremely knowledgeable, but a lot of us are not there yet in terms of deciding whether our sons and daughters should risk their lives, you know, despite the fact thatsay that they do have, you know, what theyyou know, in terms of working on nuclear and all the other stuff, despite that, you know, whether we should go to the extreme, despite the fact that we are also in a war right now with a terrorist which I see also very differently, although Iraq cannot be seen in isolation from what is happening in the Middle East.
And my sincere concerns are that as a country we have been negligent and not fully engaged in the Middle East; that we have been negligent in terms of comments in reference to Taiwan and China; that we have been negligent in our comments regarding Korea; and that some of that has been deliberate, and that this is part of all that process. And if it is, it is a game that we shouldn't be playing because it is a serious situation. And if we do want peace, we have to be directly engaged in, directly involved, and to send Colin Powell for a weekend down there doesn't cut it.
And so I am real concerned with our foreign policy in terms of the way it has been operating. And for us to bring this forward, it also brings to question, is this dialogue just prior to the November election and then are we going to see it again prior to the 2004 election?
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Dr. KAY. Fortunately that is in your field, not mine, and you have those responsibilities. I think both of us understand the awesome nature of thoseand I wish we could share with you in a more effective way our experience. I think that is one of the limitations of the way we have communicated the results of the inspection. I can tell you, you know, that occurs even among inspectors. We both served as chief inspectors and had teams that we took in and led. And I know Dick had the same experience I had. I took people in who didn't believe the Iraqi program was as bad as they had been told before they went in as inspectors, and came out much more rabid than I am. I had one who was awell, this was a period when the Soviet Union still existed during the brief early days of inspectionwho came out absolutely convinced, because he saw what we saw.
Our failure is our ability to communicate the depth of their deception, denial, clandestine nature, concealment nature of their program and the evil around the regime. And I know, failing to communicate that, we leave men and women like you with an awesome responsibility, and not much help we can provide. I accept it as a failing on my part.
Mr. RODRIGUEZ. Thank you for testifying before us and thank you for your testimony and thank you for the work for our country. Thank you.
Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman. And it is clear, that despite the fact that we are all running for reelection, Doctor Kay and Doctor Spertzel aren't. We appreciate your candid remarks today.
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Mr. KIRK. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I think I am the only Member of Congress here who flew against the Iraqis in 2000. What we saw was a dramatically upgraded Iraqi defense. And in 1998, when my squadron flew against them, we saw a very limited ability to reach our altitudes. And by the time I was up against them in April of 2000, we had lead all over our altitude, new surface-to-air missiles. Around the intel shed, we said Iraq was back. We could feel it. We could see it at our altitudes.
I have been in the intelligence community for quite a while. I didn't know that we had missed the target so badly. You describe 40,000 employees we didn't know about, a $10 billion program and 24 sites unhit by Operation Desert Storm. It sort of describes to me a nuclear Pearl Harbor in which the intelligence community simply didn't get it. So, let's assume that if we can miss 40,000 employees, $10 billion, and 24 sites, we could miss 40 kilograms of fissile material.
Tell me again, if the Iraqis had 40 kilograms of fissile material, what is your estimate of the time to a workable weapon?
Dr. KAY. If it were a fissile material that is in a final stage, assuming it is highly enriched uranium, ready to work, six months to using their initial device design, to have a single device that would work. Actually with 40, they could probably have two devices that would work. It would be roughly of the powerdepends on how they do itroughly of the power of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. And there again, there are some physics things that affect that. But believe me, if you are underneath it, the difference between 10 kilotons and 17 kilotons is largely theoretical.
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Mr. KIRK. Thank you. My understanding is in September of 2000, Saddam Hussein gave a speech in which he called on his nuclear mujahedeen to defeat the West. He also modified the Czech L29 aircraft to be an unmanned aerial vehicle. I hate to be direct here, but you have been. Can you tell me how many peoplesay a 1,000-foot air burst of that crude weapon would be in an L29, if it made it over Tel Aviv, how many people would be killed?
Dr. KAY. Well, if you managed to get a weapon of that size over Tel Aviv at about 1,000 feet, you said, for the air burst, you probably would be looking at prompt casualtiesthis is, from the immediate radiation over pressure fireI used to do these things on a circular slide rule with a little bit more precision as I have gotten olderI would guess you are probably talking about somewhere on the order of betweenand you understand, it depends on is it a clear day or a cloudy day, all of these things affect itprobably 50,000 reasonably prompt deaths. Could be much larger, depending on a couple of things.
Mr. KIRK. But 50,000 Israelis, basically.
Dr. KAY. Yes.
Mr. KIRK. You talked about these states being small states and not being able to hang together with casualties of that nature. It would seem that Israel could be one of those states that wouldn't hang together, suffering.
Page 56 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. KAY. Actually, I would have more confidence that Israel would hang together, at least for longer than I would other states in the region which, trying to be a diplomat, maybe I won't name.
Mr. KIRK. Has Scott Ritter gone crazy?
Dr. KAY. Fortunately, I avoided psychology as a profession. You know, I have given you the only explanation that you have got to think about. Either he lied to you or he is lying now. I don't know which. I don't know why.
Mr. KIRK. He told CNN that the Iraqis were not involved in a weapons of mass destruction program and had no intention. And yet the Iraqis in July of 1995 said that they had produced 19,000 liters of botulism, 84,000 liters of anthrax, 2,000 liters of aflatoxin, clostridium and ricin, had built 166 biological bombs, 25 missile warheads, and had 86 declared biological sites. But according to Mr. Ritter, that is not being involved in a weapons of mass destruction program.
Dr. KAY. That is true, and he has become an expert on nuclear, too. He is, you know, he isI am as puzzled and upset as you are, Mr. Kirk.
Mr. KIRK. Now we have managed toyou managed to help dismantle one biological site at Al Hakam, right? But theinspections, I am told, officially ended in 1997 really.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Effectively. Inspectors were still there to December of 1998, but effectively, we were marching to Iraq's tune from October of 1997 onward.
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Mr. KIRK. We have had four years without inspections. I understand we have information that a defector from the Mutana state enterprise says there are several mobile factories
Mr. HUNTER. Will the gentleman suspend?
Mr. KIRK. Yes.
Mr. HUNTER. We may have some classified areas that the gentleman is moving into.
Mr. KIRK. This is in the New York Times material that the committee gave me.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Let me comment on it.
Mr. HUNTER. Gentlemen, we just had a classified briefing in which some of that information has been discussed. If the gentleman wants to quote a
Mr. KIRK. I am quoting directly from the New York Times article that the committee staff gave us. According to the New York Timesand what I am exclusively using is the New York Timesthat we have mobile nerve gas factories, microtoxin, bacterial toxin, and an anticrop toxin. In your estimation, would that be available?
Page 58 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. SPERTZEL. Yeah. I am not sure why they would have selected some of those agents. But the firstwe actually had, in perhaps a weak moment by General Omar Asadi, when we were pressing him as to when Iraqwhen Al Hakam was conceived, and he said that there was a delay because he first asked the bio group to consider mobile laboratories. We also know that Iraq actually imported a couple fully functional mobile labs. I don't know what was inside them in the mid-eighties. I think it was 1988, 1987, or 1988. Iraq was using mobilefilling laboratories, if you would like, or mobile, mounted on vans, for filling chemical agents.
Mr. KIRK. And a mobile lab would be harder to find.
Dr. SPERTZEL. A mobile lab would be extremely hard to find.
Mr. KIRK. Well, I have worked with Doctor Christine Gosden, leading scientist in Britain, which is probably why Prime Minister Blair is so adamant on this. She documents 250 uses of chemical and biological weapons by Saddam Hussein. Is that about your understanding?
Dr. SPERTZEL. That iswe would be comfortable, yes.
Mr. KIRK. And my colleague talked about how he does not have a weapon capable of reaching the Continental United States. But in your estimation, does he have a weapon able to reach the thousands of Americans stationed at Prince Sultan Air Base, Incirlik Air Base, or any Israeli city?
Page 59 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. SPERTZEL. No. I don't think there is any question about that. Theinsideon the bases that are to the south, southeast of Iraq, because of the prevailing wind conditions, an airplane flying inside the Iraqi border, low altitude, releasing the biological agent, could have a devastating effect as far south as Yemen or Oman.
Mr. KIRK. Which would include the American personnel at Prince Sultan Air Base.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Absolutely. And that is with equipment that they have now. They produced them. They successfully tested it in 1988. They turned over to us the earlier version, the developmental model, but not the final one that was tested.
Mr. KIRK. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. HUNTER. Appreciate the gentleman's comments. Ms. Tauscher.
Mrs. TAUSCHER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Dr. Kay, Dr. Spertzel, thank you for your hard work. After the U.N. passed Resolution 687, you had a lot of success for a number of years.
Dr. KAY. And a lot of frustration. Yes, both.
Mrs. TAUSCHER. And a lot of frustration. But somewhere toward the middle of the nineties, Iraq's appeasers on the Security CouncilChina, Russia, and Francebegan to dissemble the resolution and effectively nullified all of the hard work that you did by putting up every barrier and obstacle that you could find. And nothing has really changed, has it, except that the President is going to the United Nations on Thursday. And obviously, in the context of the post-September 11 environment, what I find fascinating, and what I hope the President will talk about is that the President was very clear on the evening of September 11 and certainly on the day of September 12 about the definition of being an ally of the United States and on being on the side of good and evil. And I think, that he has got to put specifically the Security Council membersRussia, China and Francetheir feet to the fire and ask them how they can honestly expect us, one year after this terrible tragedy, as they continue to appease and continue to allow Saddam Hussein to do clearly what everyone recognizes that he doesnobody is going to nominate him for a Nobel Peace Prize, nobody is going to invite him to join their country club, no one says he is a good guy, everybody knows he is a bad guy. We all know that. We wish the actuarial tables would take over and rid him of being head of the regime. But clearly he is a lucky guy when it comes to that.
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But isn't this really about the fact that we are standing alonewith perhaps Great Britain at our side and some of our lesser alliesbecause he is standing on an oil field; and that we are the sole superpower, and that we have got allies who have, you know, warmed up to us in the post-September 11 environment and said some nice things and maybe done some nice things, but when push comes to shove and when it comes to the second-most-wanted man in the world, Saddam Hussein, because clearly we have a war on terrorism and the most-wanted man is still, I think, Osama Bin Laden. But when it comes to standing with us on what is clearly in the best interest of all of our allies, and frankly the world community, of getting rid of a guy that we know, once he has the power and capability will use these weapons in a very negative way against the world community, they have chosen oil and appeasement over us. Isn't that true?
Dr. SPERTZEL. Let me comment to this extent. There is no question that Iraq is sitting on what may be, or what some estimates have given, as the
Mrs. TAUSCHER. Richest.
Mr. SPERTZEL. richest oil field in the world, currently unexplored. It has also been stated as early as 1996 that France, or French companies, had signed leases, at least six, to exploit those oil fields. And I have seen recently where Russia companies have also signed a number of leases also to exploit the same oil field. It is also worth recalling that up until March of this past year, that France was the leading trading partner of Iraq. And I said ''was until March.'' they were supplanted at that point in time by Russia. And that indeed is a big economic incentive. And whether that is what is driving their position, I can't say. But, the suggestive information is there.
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Saddam is known for exploiting economic interests in the region and around the world. His awarding the contracts under the oil-for-food is based not on the quality of the product, not on necessarily the needs, but who his friends are. He lets that be known. And that is how he has been gaining friends around the world. So to that extent, yes, he is exploiting it and he is very, very good at it.
I do want to add one other comment on here. The issue is not Saddam, because if he died tomorrow you wouldn't see a change.
Mrs. TAUSCHER. Right.
Dr. SPERTZEL. There is an inner-core there that not very kindly, I liken to an inner-city street gang, run by a chief or a head who is absolutely and totally amoral and ruthless, but if something happens to that chief, there is somebody else to step in. And that, I think, describes appropriately the situation today in Iraq.
Dr. KAY. I think I have just discovered a difference with Dick Spertzel, my friend. As a physicist, I would prefer to run the experiment. I would actually like to see him dead tomorrow and let's see what the results were. But basically, you know, I agree.
Let meyou know, that is a very tough question and it is at the heart of what we have tried to get at. One thing that made the early inspections so extraordinarily successful as opposed to later problems that developed in the mid nineties was this united Security Council. And it is easy to focus on the economic incentives of the French and others that hadand I certainly have done that in some writing. But I also think we forget the very special time that 1991 was. A, Saddam had attacked an Arab state. I mean, it is sometimes good to have a stupid opponent. I probably shouldn't have to tell you this. Some of you may have benefited from it. And a stupid opponent is sometimes as good as being good in helping. Second, it was at the end of the Cold War in which there was an era of feeling things had changed.
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I remember I had a private meeting with the Security Councilwith only interpreters and assistants availablewhen I came back from the parking lot. The first two states to compliment me on the behavior of the time were Yemen and Cuba, neither known for being personally good friends of myself orand I have no relatives in eitheror of the United States. It was that period of feeling.
It was also a period in which Russia, certainly in 1992 and 1993, Russia could be coerced or bribed into good behavior. It was a period in which Iran was marginalized. A lot of things changed in the mid-nineties. And the memory of what Saddam had done faded for a lot, compared to other things.
So I think some of our alliesI think economics is a huge interpretive factor. But we also have to say we probably didn't do a very good job of explaining the threat, and we took too long. Saddam knewand this goes to the argument of time on his sideSaddam knew, and we knew, if he strung out the inspections long enough, eventually people would get tired.
The second time I came back from Iraq, I was in an elevator in New York in the Secretariat Building. Someone I didn't know cornered me in the elevator and said, you are responsible for children and women dying in Iraq. Her job was, in factand a very important jobtaking care of feeding children and women around the world. And I tried to explain, ''no, that was Saddam;'' and she said, ''no, because of you, the sanctions are continuing.'' We did a very poor job of explaining and allowing Saddam to manipulate that. And that had impact among some of our European allies.
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It is a complicated issue but the important thing is what you started with. As long as the council is divided, inspections will never be effective.
Mrs. TAUSCHER. Well I hope that when the President goes to the U.N. on Thursday that he is prepared to take them to George Bush's woodshed, because it was very, very easy for most people to be supportive of the American people after the catastrophic attacks of a year ago. It was a no-brainer there almost. It was very clear that we were unwarrantedly attacked without provocation, that many thousands of people died, innocent civilians just going to work in the morning.
But I think the President should move toward making sure that people understand that we need them with us when it is not so easy and when it maybe takes a few minutes to think through the problem. And if you are not with us on this one, if you are not with us, understanding that we cannot as a peaceful world allow a man with this kind of record, a three-time loser, to have these kinds of weapons and expect that he is going towhat, not use themthen you are not with us. And then I think we have got to start to make sure the people understand that we are going to start to count again, as we did a year ago, who is on our side and who is not. And if you are not with us on this, then you are an appeaser of him; and if you are an appeaser of him, then you are not going to be somebody that I am going to be supportive of.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank the gentlelady. Mr. Forbes.
Mr. FORBES. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and thank you, gentlemen. And I am going to be very quick with my questions, because we are limited on time and I know you are tired.
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One of the questions that has been puzzling me, and a little bit troublesome, is I saw on television and I have read some experts where a number of individuals who are colleagues of mine, Members of Congress, were very adamant just four years ago that some sort of strong action needed to be taken against Saddam Hussein and Iraq for a regime change. And they seem to have flip-flopped in the last four years, and I have been trying to look to see the evidence for that.
My question for you today, is there any evidence that you have at all to suggest that we should be more optimistic today regarding the success of weapons inspections or reducing Hussein's ability to develop and deploy weapons of mass destruction, short of a regime change, than existed in 1998, just four years ago?
Dr. SPERTZEL. Quick answer. No.
Mr. FORBES. Good.
The second question I had is, we had some of the same debate that you heard today took place before the Persian Gulf War. And, Dr. Kay, I know you are probably the best expert we can bring in here on nuclear weapons. In your opinion, had we not gone into Iraq at that time, where would Saddam Hussein be today regarding the development of a nuclear weapon?
Dr. KAY. He would have nuclear weapons.
Mr. FORBES. He would have one in his possession.
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Dr. KAY. He would have more than one. By the end of the decade, that is, the end of the 1990s, turn of the millennium, he would probably have had around a dozen weapons.
Mr. FORBES. So, if the debate had ended differently before the Persian Gulf War, we would be staring at a Saddam Hussein today with probably at least a dozen nuclear weapons in his arsenal.
The last two questions I have for you, one for Dr. Kay and one for Dr. Spertzel. Dr. Kay, if, in your best opinion, with everything you have seen, the likely nuclear weapon that Saddam Hussein could or would develop within that six-month period or six-year period that he was talking about, if he was successful in developing and deploying that weapon in the United States, what would your opinion be regarding the likely death toll that it would have? And I understand there are a number of variables, but your best opinion that you would have.
Dr. KAY. I can't imagine you would do it without the intent of causing maximum destruction. I have never been a fan of people who believe you set nuclear weapons off as demonstrations, because you are not sure what the reaction of the people you are demonstrating to is. So, assuming that he was seeking maximum number of casualties, there is every reason to think, even if everything doesn't go right, you are in the 25- to 50,000 prompt fatalities or a larger number, depending on how you do it. And you know, there are places you can set off a weapon that would cause even more. I am not terribly happy to describe it, but there are ways you can magnify the casualties tremendously.
Page 66 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. FORBES. And, Dr. Spertzel, for youand I don't want you to describe the weapon, but the one that you think would most likely be usedif that weapon were developed and deployed, a biological weapon in the United States, what is your best estimate of what the death toll would be from that weapon?
Dr. SPERTZEL. The most likely means of delivering it would be to havewhen you are dealing with the weapons-grade materialis merely to have it released under the appropriate conditions. Several scenarios could be envisioned. This would be done in a covert means, not an overt, which would maximize casualties. I would envision maybe a multicity coordinated attack, not unlike the coordinated airplanes last fall. Then the number of casualties depends entirely on what the target is, but as few as maybe 20 grams of material would be enough, for example, properly released into a 14-, 16-story building, that would give you virtually 100 percent casualties of everyone inside that building where it was done in a way that it wasn't known that it had been released. So you can fill in the numbers by picking which building you want. And the ability to do that requires nothing special other than knowing proper scouting of the building and having the right quality material.
That is what worries me with Iraq being involved with bioterrorism, because he can have delivery boys without a great deal of specific knowledge, but as long as the product is properly prepared ahead of time, i.e., made in Iraq, I could envision other scenarios. I could envision one scenario, quite honestly, that potentially could involve upwards to a million people with a relatively small quantity of material.
Mr. FORBES. Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Page 67 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman. Mr. McIntyre, do you have any questions?
Mr. MCINTYRE. Not at this time.
Mr. HUNTER. Okay. We will do a second round and, Ike and I had already had an opportunity tooh, I am sorry. Mr. Andrews, yeah. Did you get a chance in the last panel?
Mr. ANDREWS. Yes.
Mr. HUNTER. Okay, go ahead.
Mr. ANDREWS. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. I want to thank both of our witnesses for their candor and their service to our country and for their very valuable testimony. In the last ten years, this Congress has voted to spend three trillion dollars to defend the United States. None of that did us much good at all a year ago tomorrow, when 19 people with box cutters and airline tickets decided to launch asymmetric warfare against us. I think that if we have done anything wrong in our national discussion about Iraq thus far, it is to discuss the threat of Saddam Hussein in terms of orthodox 20th century conventional warfare rather than in the context of the world we are actually living in.
Dr. Spertzel, if I read your testimony correctly, you have concluded that among the offensive bacterial agents the Iraqis presently possess is smallpox; is that correct?
Page 68 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. SPERTZEL. That is correct.
Mr. ANDREWS. If they were to choose to use smallpox to launch an attack on the United States, how would they do it?
Dr. SPERTZEL. Again, if that isjust in dry form, in powdered form, smallpox is relatively stable so getting it into the U.S. is not an issue.
Mr. ANDREWS. How much of a quantity would you need? How large would the box be?
Dr. SPERTZEL. Twenty grams of material, which I just cited, would accomplish an awful lot.
Mr. ANDREWS. And how large is that box?
Dr. SPERTZEL. Well, if you envisiona friend of mine, Mr. Bill Patrick, used to carry around prior to September of last year, used to as part of his show and tell, he used to carry a Ziploc bag, 1-pint size, containing 200 grams.
Mr. ANDREWS. So an airplane passenger who puts a 1-pint Ziploc bac in his suitcase could carry that quantity into the United States.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Correct.
Page 69 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. ANDREWS. And once it came here, how would it be used as a weapon?
Dr. SPERTZEL. If it is truly weapons-grade material, easily dispersible, it again, is a series of scenarios. It could beit could be released into a building, which would require nothing special except knowing how to do it.
Mr. ANDREWS. So if individualswould they pour this into the heating, ventilation, air conditioning (HVAC) system of a building?
Dr. SPERTZEL. Yes.
Mr. ANDREWS. Could climb through the HVAC system and leaveempty the powder into the HVAC system. Let us assume that this was a building like the building we are in now, the Rayburn Building, which at any given time I suppose, has, I don't know, 2- or 3,000 people working in it. How many of those 3,000 people would likely survive that attack?
Dr. SPERTZEL. Depending on the strain selectedbut since you are using smallpox, generally considered to have a 30 percent lethality. But it wouldn't just be the 200 because it is a covert attack. All of you are going out in your community
Mr. ANDREWS. So if someone became infected with the smallpox and then went to the Pentagon City Mall tonight and walked around, they could conceivably infect people there.
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Dr. SPERTZEL. Not that fast, but somewhere in the incubation period.
Mr. ANDREWS. How long is the incubation period?
Dr. SPERTZEL. A period of 5 to 10 to 14 days.
Mr. ANDREWS. So within 2 or 3 weeks, if 400 people were infected, what is your best estimate as to how many would be infected 2 or 3 weeks from now?
Dr. SPERTZEL. I am going to now rely on a faulty memory, but I believe that it is something like ten to one; that is, ten people exposed to the one original.
Mr. ANDREWS. And of course, each of those 4,000 people would then become agents of the disease, and we have the classical definition of an epidemic.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Correct. And there are multiple discussions ongoing right now as to how fast that could be brought under control.
Mr. ANDREWS. Now it seems to meand I say this more to my colleagues than to the countrythat we are left with only four explanations of Dr. Spertzel's testimony. The first is that he is wrong when he concludes that the Iraqis have access to weapons-grade smallpox or that they won't have it soon. And I would simply say the burden of proof, in my judgment, on someone who chooses to dispute your contention is to show why you are wrong. The second option is to say that Saddam won't use it if he has it. Would either of you gentlemen like to comment on that proposition?
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Dr. KAY. I wouldn't bet the house on that one.
Mr. ANDREWS. Nor would I bet my constitutional responsibility to defend the country on the assumption that he would not.
The third theory is that, well, we can solve this problem by inspection. Let us assume tomorrow that Saddam had a complete change of heart, agreed to a U.N. inspections regime in which people could in fact go anywhere in the country, anytime, and talk to anyone. If that were in place for a year, could you comfortably come back and assure us that the scenario I just laid out would not happen?
Dr. SPERTZEL. No.
Mr. ANDREWS. Why not?
Dr. SPERTZEL. Because the quantity required for terrorist purposes is so low, I don't think there is an inspection regime that you can put in that wouldhas much likelihood of finding it. You would have to know by human intelligence exactly where it was being produced, and I don't see that happening.
Mr. ANDREWS. The only other choice would be for us to argue that you are overstating the risk. And I would invite anyone who believes that to go outside of this hearing and independently read the opinions of scientists and epidemiologists and others to study this question. Which leaves us with either you accept these awful options you have laid out or you remove the government that is permitting this kind of literal incubation for terrorism to exist.
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I think that is the debate. We can talk all we want about the degradation of the Iraqi military since 1991. If the question before us were whether or not a strike against Iraq is justified to prevent it from winning a conventional war against the United States or its allies, I am pretty sure I would oppose that because I don't think it does justify it. That is not the issue. And for us to sit here on the anniversary of that terrorist attack and have a discussion as if it never happened, that we are still living in the comfortable world of symmetric warfare between nation states and their armed forces is to me very difficult to understand.
So I thank you for illuminating these points and I hope that our colleagues hear what you had to say and the country hears what you had to say and our President articulates what you had to say. Thank you.
Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman, and we have now gone through the committee so that everyone has had a chance to ask at least one question from both ourfrom either the first hearing, our classified hearing, or this open hearing and we will go back for a second round. I already have had plenty of time here at the mike and I thinkIke, are you okay? We will go to Mr. Spratt and then on down the line to Mr. Weldon and try to get a second round in. Mr. Spratt.
Mr. SPRATT. Thank you both for your forbearance as well as your excellent testimony. We very much appreciate it and your forthrightness. But let me ask you a minute just to suspend judgment about the efficacy of inspections and think hypothetically. Let us assume that after the President makes his speech to the United Nations on Thursday the Security Council gathers its resolve and decides that one last ultimatum will be made to Iraq and Saddam Hussein; that is, there must be thorough, rigorous inspections. If you were given the task of writing the charter, the bill of equipment, the table of operation and equipment (TO&E) as it were, for this inspection team, what would be necessary to have the kind of inspection force that could begin to do the job?
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Dr. KAY. If I can start with what my requirements would be, it is resources, personnel and intelligence; that is, it has got to have the resources to go at a lot of places at once.
Mr. SPRATT. Give us an estimate of what you are talking about in terms of manpower.
Dr. KAY. At our best, we were able to field around 100 inspectors in the field. I would want to have access to enough people to put teams and keep teams in the field, keep them at work on the order of at least ten times that. I would like to have teams of at least a thousand, not with two helicopters. Two helicopters for Iraq is a joke and it was always a joke, although I loved the helicopters when we had themwith the resources to go anywhere anytime in the country and get there fast. I would likeso that is the sort of resources you are talking about. That is a very large operation and the ability to get it.
The second thing is, and the third thing because that covers really resources and personnel, let me say on these personnel, these personnel are incredibly hard to get. Iraq has a very steep and demanding learning curve. All of us have had experience with inspectors the first time in the country who aren't worth very much. It takes three and four times. You are going up against a country that is world class in deception, denial and concealment and intimidation. So it is a rigorous selection process. I am personally disturbed that if we are going that way we have to start doing it right now. You are not going to get these people easily and quickly. You need to provide them with intelligence that will allow them to have a chance of penetrating that program. In the early days, we were beneficialand I will say teams I led were benefited from a general feeling on the Security Council that sharing intelligence was the appropriate and necessary thing to do. So it was just not the United States. It was other countries as well. That allowed those inspections to be serious and effective. That changed a great deal over time. I think the commitment is to provide them with the best intelligence of what you know your nationals have been supplying Iraq. Foreign purchases are a tremendous guide to it.
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Mr. SPRATT. Did you have access to Israeli intelligence?
Dr. KAY. I am trying to survive as we get close to things that are really sensitive. All U.N. members were requested to provide intelligence and a large number of U.N. members provided intelligence there. And let me tell you, the variability of the quality of that intelligence was the same across every group. There is not one that stands out as always having been right. That has got to be there. For me it is resources, people, and intelligence. The final element is leadership that is determined to end that program, not play a U.N. game of keeping the Security Council happy, but it is a dedication to really ending that program because you are going up against a regime that is determined to keep the program.
So those are the four things, but Dick probably has some others.
Dr. SPERTZEL. I think it is appropriate. The problem that you are going to have is the multiplicity of sites that he could be using, and I don't see how you are going to be able to get around to all of those in a timely fashion and not having things moved. I once said that the only way I could assure you that absolutely Iraq had no biological weapons or no program remaining was that if you essentially have inspectors lined up hand to hand from the eastern bordersouthern border from the eastern side all the way out to Saudi Arabia and you began to march north and every time you got to a hole in the ground or a building you made a point of going in and looking. That is a gross exaggeration but that is what it amounts to, because his ability to move items is such that if you don't get there in a hurry you might miss them.
There is a committee with a noble sounding name of the Control of Biological and Chemical Materials. You know sort of sounds like our Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or something along that line. That committee had members in every ministry. Those members were all part of the intelligence service, and that committee actually functioned as a way for Iraq to immediately mobilize personnel, materials and equipment. And they could do that within 24 to 48 hours. And that is what you are up against. So what it would take, lots of inspectors. I don't know how you would sustainand I believe Dr. Kay was talking about a thousand total for all the disciplinesI don't see how you can sustain them.
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Mr. SPRATT. Earlier in our previous witnesses, two other things were mentioned. One was the security backup that has been mentioned by the Carnegie Foundation. Of course they estimated the size of it as 50,000 troops, which is several divisions. That in itself is a huge logistical undertaking, but, in addition, the right to take key suspected scientists out of the country for questioning and interrogation. Would you put that in your charter?
Dr. KAY. I certainly would put the last in.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Here, again, it takesI agree. I think that would be magnificent, but you are talking about something that I seriously doubt would be done under the U.N.
Mr. SPRATT. I am talking hypothetically.
Dr. SPERTZEL. You could get a hold of a few key individuals. And unfortunately in biology, I can't tell you who was head of that program. We knowingly did not ever talk to that person. It may have been somebody we talked to, but we didn't know it.
Mr. SPRATT. Here is one thing that concerns me, Dr. Kay. I also posed this question earlier. I have this fear that other members have expressed that we send young men and women into Iraq and Saddam Hussein, knowing that the jig is up, unleashes with full fury his chemical and biological weapons on them early on, not when he is in a corner but early on to try and daunt their invasion. If we could one last time get in, is there some possibility that we might find caches of these weapons if we have this kind of charter, that could at least diminish, if not eradicate his ability to counterattack with these weapons when we send our young men and women in?
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Dr. KAY. You can certainly get lucky. I had inspections that got lucky and found things that the Iraqis thought we wouldn't find and found them. Let me give you an example that describes the difficulty of conducting inspections and moving with security people. UNSCOM during its total history from 1991 to 1998, conducted 280 inspections. This doesn't count monitoring visits, but actual inspections.
Mr. SPRATT. That means facilities, sites?
Dr. KAY. Facilities, sites, vary from large to small. Of those 280and we recently have done a reanalysis of those, less than half a dozen were genuine surprises. The Iraqis penetrated where we were going, either through human intelligence (HUMINT), inadequate communication security on the part of the teams, various means, and actually greeted us at those sitesactually fewer. The first surprise inspection that was a genuine surprise I conducted, I had six people that knew where we were going, only six. The rest of the team, it was ''trust me, you are with me.'' That was a genuine surprise because no one talked and we went to really fantastic lengths to keep a secret. If I have got to move around withI mean I can't imagine moving around with a thousand security personnel. The issue of keeping that a secret and them not knowing where you are going strikes me as just impossible. The number might be useful if you get there and they say ''no.'' But the issue is, if they know where you are goingand Dick Spertzel described it very wellif they know where you are going you can bet when you get there what you want is not going to be there. They have perfected over 11 years a deception, denial, concealment program based on mobility, prior knowledge, and quick movement. We made them better than they were in 1991.
Page 77 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC So that is why you are getting this pessimism. Would it be worth it if you could accomplish reducing the threat somewhat, getting more evidence that was physical that would convince allies to join you? I understand all those reasons. And my skepticism is, if your objective is to eliminate the WMD program, I don't see it useful. It may well serve other purposes, although I would not underestimate the difficulty of doing that.
Mr. SPRATT. The likelihood of accidentally finding it, if you look at what allegedly Iraq had done with their biological weaponssome of them were stored in a hole in the ground at the end of a dirt runway covered with a tarpaulin and then unearthed. Others were buried in pits, along the Tigris Canal, again covered with tarpaulin and sand. Others were inside railroad tunnels no longer being used for trains. The likelihood of inspectors finding those without good intelligence information that says they are there is somewhere between nil and none. It is just not going to happen.
Thank you very much.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you. Mr. Weldon.
Mr. WELDON. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Thank you both for testifying. I am sorryI was watching your testimony from my office during other meetings, but I did read your statements and I was here for the classified portion. First of all, in response to Mr. Andrews' questions we ought to put it on the record that in fact, relative to the possibility of a smallpox incident, there was a war game conducted last May at Andrews Air Force base called Dark Winter. You are both probably familiar with that. That war game simulation was paid for by the Army and was conducted by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). Sam Nunn played the role of the President. Jim Woolsey played the role of the CIA Director and the incidentbasically, the war game envisioned a deliberate outbreak of three cases of smallpox, individual cases in each of three states: Pennsylvania, Alabama and Arkansas. Within 2 weeks, 2 million Americans were afflicted with smallpox, not 2,000, 200,000 but 2 million.
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So we actually have a war game that has been conducted by our military that goes into very specific detail about the problems associated, and that was done, by the way before 9/11. It was done in May of 2001. One of my concerns is that the problem in Iraq was caused by lack of control of proliferation during the 1990s. It was a big concern that I raised consistently. In fact I had documented 38 times that we had evidence that Russian entities and Chinese entities illegally sent weapons of mass destruction and conventional technology into Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya and North Korea. One of the most egregious violations was when we caught the Iraqis receiving not once, not twice, but three times, the accelerometers and gyroscopes. And what did the administration do at that time? Pretend that we didn't see it. We never imposed the required sanctions. That was in 1997, I believe. I was in Moscow a month after we found it and we didn't even want to ask the Russians about that because it would have embarrassed Boris Yeltsin.
So my question to you, first of all, isand I am not totally satisfied that this administration has taken enough aggressive steps to stop proliferation into Iraq. There was a recent report that perhaps Ukraine has supplied some military technology into Iraq. So my first question to you is are you satisfied that proliferation controls are better today than they were in the past relative to this kind of technology going in that could enhance our capability in the area of weapons of mass destruction?
Dr. SPERTZEL. I will give you a quick answer in biology because I think it is probably simpler than the nuclear side. The answer basically is no, I am not because there was noIraq had no problem getting critical items, even while the inspectors were there, being imported throughostensibly clandestinely across the borderI am not sure about thatfrom Jordan into Iraq as well as from Syria into Iraq. We know that there was direct evidence of that. We had one company that told us that, ''oh, yeah, he sent his representative to Amman and ordered what he wanted.'' And we saw the signed slips indicating that he had received it. And there is no indication that things have improved any since 1998. Sanctions are not working. The borders of Iraq are as porous as can be.
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Dr. KAY. I share that view. I think it is in the areas of nuclear and ballistic missiles a somewhat similar problem. When you combine money with how far the Iraqis are and the way technology progresses it has become a much worse problem. Let me give you the case of the aluminum centrifuge rotors. The Iraqi centrifuge pieces that a team I was on discovered were made of marging steel. Marging steel is harder to get access to. It is a more specialized technology and not everyone can produce it. They were going to carbon fiber rotors, because carbon fiber winding machines, although controlled because they are relevant to missile technology, as you know, Mr. Weldon, in addition to centrifuges were still at that point where they were becoming generally available because of Callaway golf clubs, high performance fly rods, and a whole series of other issues. So they were on the slope and they understood it. By going to carbon fiber, they were better off. Going to aluminum is even easier because a number of countries that have the capabilities to extrude high performance aluminum tubes is almost in any country that has a machine tool industry.
So the problem has become porous. We have not found an effective way of dealing with it, but let me tell you, I am pessimistic that there is an easy way to deal with it other than replacing the regime. We are very much into talking about export controls and all, and I am certainly in favor of them relevant to Iraq. It is very much like putting your finger in the dike when in fact you ought to be examining the nature of the flood control system as a whole there and it is why you have the problem. It is much worse than it was in the 1990s.
Mr. WELDON. One final question and this gets to the point you both made which I was going to ask and you have already answered it, and that is you are convinced that the only solution is a regime change, and I am coming to that conclusion very quickly myself. But knowing the kinds of considerations that our colleagues have to make on an up and coming vote, I think it is going to behoove us, whatever step we can, to convince overwhelmingly our members that that is the course of action we have to take. So therefore, I happen to believe that we have to put more pressure on Russia.
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Russia just signed a $40 billion energy deal with Iraq. They are hugely involved in Iraq and have had both political and economic ties to Iraq. We spend about a billion dollars a year in Russia, most of which I support, in the area of economic investment, cooperative threat reduction, agricultural and environmental assistance. So therefore, what I am trying to organize, and I talked to some of some my Russian colleagues in the Duma over the weekend as a follow-up to a trip you took with me, Mr. Saxton, to go to Vienna to negotiate a framework to end the Kosovo conflict, which they involved themselves in, to take to Russia a delegation that basically says to the Russians, ''It is time for you to join the foray directly. You are getting our assistance and you have told us you don't want conflict. You are against us going into Iraq. Here is the set of criteria that we want with you with us to get Saddam to agree upon,'' which I think is going to be impossible on the face because, one, they won't want to do it and, two, Saddam won't accept it. Can you help me and members of this body, and this will be both Democrats and Republicans. In fact, there were two Democrats that asked me to do thiscan you put together, not today but in the next couple of days a very short one-page of what would that scenario be, what would those conditions be? Obviously, uncontrolled access to any site, so that we can go and take this to the Russians, who we support and help, and say, okay, here is what we expect you to do? You got leverage with Saddam. We need to end this. And so we can use that leverage to convince, if not the Russians that they can could do this, but to show our colleagues in the House before the vote that we will have taken every possible attempt that we could take to try to provide a mechanism to allow the process to move forward as was originally required by the U.N. resolutions?
Could you help us define what those parameters would be?
Page 81 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. KAY. Sure. Would be happy to.
Mr. WELDON. Do you also believe that Russia in fact, can and should be playing a much more aggressive role in getting Saddam to do what we want him to do, given our assistance to Russia?
Dr. SPERTZEL. I don't think there is any question that they should be, but I seriously question whether they will because the conditions that would be required are such that anybody wantsthe French learned. The French started taking a tough line with Iraq about a year and a half ago. As a result, Iraq promptly signed several contracts with Moscow to exploit the oil field east of Kut, and now Russia is Iraq's leading trading partner and not the French.
Dr. KAY. I am more optimistic and let me tell you, I think this is true of our European allies. I think the difficulty of convincing them to take the tough argument and overcome some economic costs is that they haven't believed we are serious. Once they can believe that we are serious about regime replacement and the Iraqis can do it the easy way or they can do it the hard way, that changes the entire equation because they know they are not going to be dealing with the old Saddam. They may be dealing with either a new regimeand this exists in what a physicist calls imaginary spacea new Saddam, a kinder, gentler, honest Saddam. In either case they know they have to cut a different deal. The problem is for literallythis goes back to 1991they have not believed that we are serious about that issue. So in their own self-interest, they have cut the most logical, rational deal with the guy who has got the money. So I can be more optimistic if I believe we are indeed serious and can convince our allies and our friends like the Russians that we are serious.
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Mr. HUNTER. Dr. Snyder.
Mr. SNYDER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. If it seems like you have been here for hours it is because you have been here for hours. So we appreciate you being here.
The cooperative threat reduction that you mentioned earlier in your testimony, Dr. Kay, and I took from your comments that you have been supportive of the program. Senator Lugar has made the suggestion that we, Congress, ought to authorize and the administration be able to expand that to other countries. Now that we have some newer members of the nuclear club, do you agree with that concern that we ought to be looking perhaps at a country like Pakistan or India, if we thought they needed some help, that we could come up with appropriate contracts and support to protect their nuclear materials? Do you agree with that?
Dr. KAY. I absolutely do and when I said that the six months, if they obtain fissile material, I used the easy answer of the insecurity of the former Soviet supply. We should be concerned about nuclear material wherever it exists and it has the greatest possible security surrounding it.
Mr. SNYDER. The issue of why we are here, and your comments have been very helpful, but earlier I think you made the comment that we have to make a decision about what kind of risk we are willing to run. I believe the lady phrased it, ''Are we willing to run the risk of keeping Saddam Hussein in power?'' To me it seems like it is not a question of are we willing to put up with the risk of Saddam Hussein being in power. To me it becomes a trade-off. There is not going to be a risk-free world, and I guess, as General Scowcroft has been making the point, his theory that we need to consider the possibility that a military action bringing about a regime change in Iraq may impede the ongoing activities we have against al Qaeda because it is so dependent on international cooperation. I don't know what the number is now. We think al Qaeda cells are active in 50 to 60 countries. I mean, this is going to be a different kind of war because it is going to be like an international crime fighting operation. It really does depend on a lot on international cooperation. I was struck by your comments that you all had finding in Iraq, finding on the ground, finding the materials. And yet what we are trying to do in these 50 or 60 countries is find, what, 3 to 5,000 people who may have been hiding out there for several years working, having families and doing everything completely legal, and yet we are clearly going to be dependent on the host country.
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So to me, it is a complicated issue and it is a weighing versus, you know, the risk of Saddam Hussein being in power to age 65 versus how it impacts on other aspects of our national security. And then you have a whole issue ofwhich concerns some members and certainly a lot of people and the American public about the effect of a war itself.
Senator Lugar I think, brought up when they had a hearing about six weeks ago the issue of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq under a new regime, and you know brings up this issue, is it the geopolitical forces that are driving Iraq or is it Saddam Hussein? You make the comment in your statement, ''As long as the government remains in Baghdad committed to acquiring weapons of mass destruction, that capability can be expected to become without much warning a reality.'' Senator Lugar's question was, we spend five, six, eight years there, tremendous expense, have our first elections, we leave. The first state of the union address of the new regime in Baghdad, and they say because of the threats of Israel and Iran we need to develop a weapons of mass destruction program. I mean that is not an unreasonable possibility in that neck of the woods.
So I appreciate your comments today. I think these really are difficult and complicated issues. I was a bit disappointed to hear your description of the resources you had. Retrospectively that looks like a lot of, I don't know, lack of foresight on the part of all of us of the international community that as you described the golden period of Yemen and Cuba congratulating you would have been wonderful if you had 10 times or 50 times the resources for you right then. Now my recollection of the research is eight sports utility vehicles (SUVs) stopped somewhere for hours at a time and in the early days that wasn't the case.
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Mr. HUNTER. Thank you, Dr. Snyder.
Mr. SAXTON. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I agree with Dr. Snyder that this is an extremely complex and complicated subject, and I suspect from the comments that I have heard, not today necessarily, but over the past several months and during August in particular, lead me to believe that there is a lot of confusion in the country about this subject.
And let me just ask this question. Let me say this first, I guess. The Secretary of Defense was here in June or July and he spoke of the need to have a discussion about whether and when it is appropriate to decide to have preemptive strikes, and I was taken with that question because I hadn't thought about it in that context before. And I have been struggling with that question, when is it appropriate to have preemptive strikes?
And then during August, President Bush saidI guess it was while he was working at the ranch in Texasthat he was very concerned about the situation in Iraq. And I don't remember exactly what he said, but his message was, it is time for a regime change and the regime change is necessary because of the development of weapons of mass destruction, particularly with nuclear weapons. And Dr. Kay, in your early remarks you said something like this. And I think I have the words about right, you said prior to 1991, which was over a dozen years ago, Iraq fully understood the process of building a nuclear device. Experts in Iraq have unraveled all of the science necessary. Can you tell us in helping us to decide these questions what led you to that conclusion?
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Dr. KAY. Well, we were extraordinarily fortunate on the third mission I took in ofbecause of a mistake the Iraqis made and that is where accidents play a role, seizing the records, the actual records of the Iraqi atomic energy program. So we have a bureaucratic record of progress reports that they filed. We also in the first mission uncovered their major electromagnetic isotope separation (EMIS) enrichment process and then discovered their centrifuge process. So we actually had physical evidence plus documents. I mean, the ideal unraveling. And inspection is often like a white collar crime investigation. All too often you are dealing with people, you can't really sweat the people as much as you would want to and you get some written records and then you search for physical evidence and put it together.
In the nuclear area, much more so than in the biological area, we were lucky in that early on, we were able to combine physical records with actual physical evidence, buildings and devices with the actual written records of much of their programming, including design documents of the device. So that is a result of that sort of analysis. And I will say again, I was extraordinarily lucky and fortunate in being able to go in immediately after the Gulf War. Iraq was still a disorganized country in many ways. They hadn't learnedI had an Iraqi official tell me, ''You don't behave like the U.N. inspectors that we had prior to the Gulf War.'' I took that as a compliment. No, we didn't. We had a different set of resolutions that we were marching to. They hadn't quite caught on to how to deal with us.
So we were able to construct what I think most of usthere is very little disagreement about what weabout what we decided they knew then, the area of uncertainty and the area many of you have focused on is where are they today and where will they be going tomorrow. And that is when you get to connecting dots and extrapolation. But that statement is based on hard physical evidence, interviews, people, and written documents. We seizedI think the final total was somewhere around 100,000 pages of documents. I view myself as the grandfather of the full employment of Arabic translators because we are still going through those documents today.
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Mr. SAXTON. And not to be redundant, but didn't you also say earlier that you found in your investigation of certain sitesdidn't you find a diagram of a nuclear device?
Dr. KAY. That is what I call the design documents. It is a diagram plus the scientific calculation.
Mr. SAXTON. And from your expertise as a nuclear physicist, do you believe that that diagram, if converted into an actual device, had the capability of working as an atomic
Dr. KAY. It is not my judgment. This was submitted to the U.S. and other national labs that have designed actual nuclear weapons. It is the combined judgment of at least three countries that have actually designed nuclear weapons.
Mr. SAXTON. And through other testimony you gave here today, you indicated there is only one element remaining.
Dr. KAY. Fissile material, yes.
Mr. SAXTON. And we don't know for sure if they have been able to acquire fissile material or not.
Dr. KAY. That's correct.
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Mr. SAXTON. And if they do, how long would it take them to construct the device?
Dr. KAY. The best estimate is somewhereit is months rather than years and somewhere in the range of six months.
Mr. SAXTON. And I suspect that the President had been briefed on this information before he made his statement in August?
Dr. KAY. Yes, sir. We have not been quiet about it.
Mr. SAXTON. Mr. Chairman. It has been a very sobering hearing today. A lot of the questions that evidence and a lot of the questions that I am sure other Americans have had have been addressed today, and I am sure this discussion will continue to move forward, so we thank you even though this is information that some of us may not have wanted to hear, we greatly appreciate the several hours that you have spent here bringing us up to date on these issues. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. HUNTER. I want to thank the distinguished gentleman from New Jersey for asking again the key questions, and also, thank you Dr. Kay and Dr. Spertzel for the great contribution you have made to our country. And part of the strength of this country is individuals like yourselves who have a lot of integrity and the great intellect and the desire to serve in what have been some pretty inconvenient circumstances.
Page 88 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC We appreciate the testimony you have brought us. We still have several members that have questions, and want to thank you for your endurance. And we still have a few members who have some questions, and we hope you would oblige us and let us continue. Mr. Larson.
Mr. LARSON. Thank you very much, and thank you, gentlemen, as the chairman pointed out, for your endurance, and also for your insightful and thorough comments today, as well. I think it was Judge Leonard Hand who said that it is democracy and liberty that leaves you thinking, perhaps you are not too sure. And I think that this hearing has demonstrated that, and yet there has been several key points.
I would like to ask three questions as they relate to weapons of mass destruction as it relates to, as we peel away the veneer and look at some of the economic underpinnings, the issue of oil, which was raised by Ms. Tauscher and others. And third, this notion of a regime change. Let me start first with the oil and say that I think, and I would like to associate myself with the remarks of Ms. Tauscher. I hope the President, when he goes to the U.N., does take to task the nations of Russia and France and China.
My question is, are there international and global corporations that are also dealing in breaking the sanctions in dealing with Saddam Hussein? Do you have any knowledge of that or do you know of oil companies that are dealing with Saddam?
Dr. KAY. I have no personal direct knowledge. It is not something I have devoted attention to.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Likewise. I don't know of any and I haven't heard of any.
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Mr. LARSON. The upsetting thing when I go back home and I speak to many of our citizens, they feel a lot of what is going on in terms of our overall policy and rationale for being in the Middle East starts and ends with oil. And that is not the purpose of your mission here today, but it is something that comes up repeatedly, and I think there is more than a thread of truth to that and more of a connection that needs to be drawn out in subsequent hearings. With regard to weapons of mass destruction, and I appreciate the distinction that you were making with Saddam Hussein, and yet you said a couple of times about your affinity for Iran.
And I believe you said something to the extent that ''We understand why Iran is developing weapons of mass destruction, largely in response of and in fear of Saddam Hussein.'' And yet the President has said, in the axis of evil speech that we have Iraq, Iran, and North Korea. Now both North Korea and Iran we already know have weapons of mass destruction. So in getting to drawing a line in the sand and differentiating in terms of policy, who is next? If we need a regime change in Iraq, do we also need regime changes in Iran and North Korea?
Dr. KAY. Let me try. I will be clear that I don't exactly have an affinity for Iran. What I meant to convey is the Iranians clearly have a concern which one must understand about Iraq.
Mr. LARSON. I didn't mean, Dr. Kay, an affinity. It just seemed that way when you are dealing with their scientists and talking to their people.
Dr. KAY. They have an original security problem, and partly that is there. I think, in fact, the Iranian regime is as much as reprehensible in terms of terrorism and what they have done. So that is an issue. I do believe that a change in Iraq with an Iraqi regime that, in fact, chose to deal with its neighbors differently and dealt with weapons of mass destruction is likely to have a positive impact that we have not generally focused on, and that is what I was trying to refer to. I think it is going to be very difficult to bring effective pressure on the Iranians to end their weapons of mass destruction program as long as Iraq is pursuing one. As Americans, we tend to view everyone as to how they stand in relation to us. There is an historic issue of the Irish and English relationship, which we both know goes back, and there are other more complicating factors and Middle East is filled with these sorts of issues.
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Mr. LARSON. To that point, and I appreciate your comments, and I know how late it has been, but to move to my final point that I would like to make for today, the notion of a regime change. Sometimes words in and of themselves become antiseptic, and I said that in earlier meetings that to me, it seems like the choice is pretty clear here, that either we are going to go in and Saddam Hussein either gets the death sentence or he gets life imprisonment. The death sentence is we go in and take him out with force, tactical, overwhelming, or whatever the case may be. There is, however, and we have dwelled a lot about the specifics as it relates to the danger of doing nothing, but the danger of that preemptive strike and what that means with a person who is willing to use his own people as human shields, where his defensible positions will be set up in school yards, in hospitals, and the marketplace. And the loss of life that will occur there has to give one pause. I was in Incirlik and saw a triage unit that was set up specifically to treat our soldiers, our kids who become inflicted with biological or chemical warfare.
Notwithstanding the cost where we know we are spending about a billion dollars a week in Afghanistan to prosecute the war, I think the cost and expense of resources to go in and prosecute and having theour two distinguished doctors here, as was asked by Mr. Spratt, draw up the procedure however skeptical you might be, that that seems to be the first course that this nation should go down before we decide that we are going to have a preemptive strike, lest all the things we were talking about before, a chain of events is unleashed within a whole community, that our preemptive strike unintentionally and unwittingly sets off.
Dr. KAY. I can't disagree with anything you have said. All I would say is, the question I keep asking myself, and this is a question that reflects on me, is ''Do I think the cost to Iraqi citizens and to the men and women of the U.S. five years from now when he has five more years to further develop his weapons of mass destruction, would be less or greater than it would be if we took action now? And believe me, I am not foolish to believe it would be costless. I think it may not be as great as some people think it would be, but it clearly would not be costless. And I keep coming back to the conclusion as I look to the nuclear program and I talk to Dr. Spertzel about the biology program and other colleagues we have in the chemical and missile area, that five years from now, he is going to be more capable and more able to do it, and we would have to use more force which would increase the damage, danger, and deaths in Iraq itself to Iraqis.
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So I mean, this is what I mean by the risk analysis. I think the question I am troubled with and have quite clearly come to the conclusion that if given the voting card, I would vote to authorize is, I really believe this is one of those cusp-like questions for democracy where early action, while never costless and never riskless, is almost overwhelmingly demonstrable, less costly, less risky than action that might have to be taken five years from now.
Mr. LARSON. I take it from that comment you have no faith in the ability to go in there, and given all the ample resources to thwart, to stop, to constrict, to prevent Saddam Hussein or his successors and no faith that, in thatin as much as sanctions, if they were truly enforced and that our allies, as Mrs. Tauscher points out, were brought to task as well as the corporations throughout this globe who are alsoand running this whole process, it seems to me that we ought to take a shot at that first. But I appreciate the depth of your conviction and the clarity which you have made your points today.
Dr. SPERTZEL. I would like to add a comment. To a degree, that is what we were doing from 1991 to 1998, and it didn't work. And withyou know, unless you are going to totally surround the border of Iraq with people that you can rely on, you are not going to stop material getting across that border. And I don't care who is behind it.
Mr. LARSON. From 1991 to 1998, doctor, initially everyone has said earlier there was early success that was enjoined. And then, it broke down. And from 1991 to 1998, at least, to my knowledge, we haven't seen his ability to do harm, ''he'' meaning that he hasn't been able to carry that out.
Page 92 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Now from 1998 forward, and absent our being in there and being tough, that is an open-ended question, and certainly I would agree with you. But if we were there with the full force and commitment that people of your capability and intelligence could bring to bear, I think that is at least worth a shot.
Dr. SPERTZEL. I would agree with you if you can get the backing. But, frankly, sir, I don't see any way in the world that you are going to get that kind of backing out of the Security Council, and if the U.S. tries to go it alone, you are at war. But, to do this through the U.N., which would mean doing it through UNMOVIC and the conditions by which it has been set up with not only the council itselfI hate to use this word, but maybe ''meddling'' is an appropriate one and certainly the role that we have seen the secretary general of the U.N., who seriously undercut the inspectors in February of 1998, Iraq will twist everything.
Mr. LARSON. Isn't that the gauntlet that the President is going to hurl down at the U.N. And that is consistent with everything that he has put out in the past as well, and I think that is the message. And upon the United Nations and the world hearing those demands, then everybody has a responsibility to take all the information and then act accordingly. And I think that will be helpful and instructive to Congress.
Dr. KAY. Mr. Larson, I certainly accept your challenge to design a world that would accomplish the goals that we all would prefer as opposed to the use of military force, preemptive or otherwise. The skepticism that you are hearing from us relates to the issue of a belief that is, as long as Saddam maintains his desire to do it, that world is going to look so much like occupation, that what we are afraid of is that the U.N. will recoil in horror, and ''We can't do this to another member state,'' and you cut back and compromise to what is this ideal world to what will satisfy us, and I think the U.S. is a pretty large number of people, to a world that none of us can have confidence you are actually restricting his weapons of mass destruction role. It is the diplomatic process that occurs in any body as you try to reach a compromise that would include the most.
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So it literally is a slippery slope when you start out with a shared objective, that I would share with you, of a regime that would be capable of doing this in a cooperative fashion without military force, but I end up with a regime that won't accomplish our objectives, and, in fact, leaves us with almost an impossible situation of ever then taking military action short of the weapon actually being used, because you will be able to say ''Well, we have got a U.N. inspection force here,'' but it has been so neck down from the ideal, that in fact it's a shielding force.
And many of us feel that by 1998, certainly 1997 and 1998, UNSCOM had almost become a shielding force for Iraq's weapons of mass destruction development program because we were so emasculated and unable to carry out the operation.
Dr. SPERTZEL. Absolutely. I think one of the most worst things that I can recall happening was when they allowed the declaration of sensitive sites and for a sensitive site, only three inspectors were allowed to go inside at one time. Now you get a facility maybe the size of the Rayburn Building and you send three people in there and expect them to find anything, not going to happen. And that was the conditions that were imposed on us.
Mr. LARSON. Your points have been salient. I appreciate it. And I appreciate the forbearance of the chairman as well, and thank you for your comments. And I hope that the point of views that we have expressed also can be brought to forbearance as well. Thank you.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank the gentleman. And Mr. McIntyre hadn't had a question for either session.
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Mr. MCINTYRE. I was here for the classified session and came back for this, and I appreciate you being here tonight. Just a couple of questions; maybe you can help. Having just returned to a trip to Afghanistan and central Asia, I particularly noted your comments on page four, Dr. Kay, middle of the page where you say, even states such as Kuwait and Bahrain, which are much more dependent upon the U.S. for their security are resisting U.S. leadership when it threatens military confrontation. We had an opportunity in our delegation of 11 Members of Congress to meet with the foreign minister of Bahrain, who expressed concern about Arab states, our allies, and our historical allies being left out of any decision by the U.S. to attack Iraq.
According to the foreign minister, Bahrain and other Arab states are still concerned about being left out themselves of any decision-making by the U.S. with the unilateral decision by the U.S. to potentially strike, a lot of the Arab states start wondering who could be next, because they are not being included in the decision-making. Obviously, we need their air space, air bases, and use of the ports for our troops, which we know are doing such a good job over there now.
In your opinion, would the U.S. be able to regain the confidence and trust of our Arab allies after any such potential attack or do you think our relationship would be permanently and detrimentally affected in terms of cooperation to help our military?
Dr. KAY. My experience in the Middle East is that nothing succeeds as much as success that once you are successful, assuming that the application of military force by the United States was successful in quickly eliminating Saddam Hussein.
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Saddam has no friends. We are lucky to have an opponent who has outraged most. It is not a love of Saddam to force this so much as two effects, a fear of the U.S. stirring up the hornet's nest and then not staying around, being happy with a couple of dozen cruise missiles and thinking it has accomplished something, and they still have to live with him. And the other quite frankly, is the issuesfor them, Saddam is not number one in the streets or often in the palaces. What they view is a failure for us to deal with the Israeli Palestinian issue with equal seriousness. But I strongly believe that if we were successful, if we were to carry it out and were successful, we would find not resentment, we would find respect, admiration and ''Thank God, he is gone''.
And now would you deal with our number one issue? So I think it is not an easy transition, but I think it is one that is doable.
Mr. MCINTYRE. Are you basically saying the other Arab countries that are in this position would just sit it out. Maybe they don't want to side with us or get involved because they were left out of the decision-making process, but at the same time, they are not going to get involved on Iraq's side either. They are just going to watch, wait, and see.
Dr. KAY. I don't think they will get involved on Iraq's side. I think collaboration takes many forms. And while we would often like to have you up front joining us in Kumbaya and saying you're with us, there are other forms of cooperation in the Middle East that you learn to live with.
Mr. MCINTYRE. Do you feel you would have that type of cooperation?
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Dr. KAY. I certainly do.
Mr. MCINTYRE. Second, on page six of your testimony, near the end, you say this statement, which is a quite powerful one. ''As we consider possible action, absent the forceful removal of Saddam, unambiguous certainty as to the status of his weapons of mass destruction program is likely to come only after the first use of these weapons against the United States and its friends''. Do we haveand perhaps this is a note to think about as we conclude today's hearings, but do we have a self-fulfilling prophecy of inviting the use of chemical, biological, nuclear weapons by attacking Iraq preemptively.
Are we convinced, and I want to know if you are convinced, the two of you, that Iraq is preparing to use these weapons against the United States, its assets, not just to develop them. I mean, so much of what we have heard, generally the last two or three weeks, has been they are close to developing, they are going to develop them, the word has been developed. The question is, do you believe they are preparing to use them against America or American interests, or they would only be used in response to an attack?
Dr. SPERTZEL. If the U.S. does not agree not to stop bombing in the north and the south, frankly get out and stop interfering with the Iraqi regime's desires, whatever they happen to be, yes, I fully believe that Iraq is prepared to use weapons of mass destruction against U.S. interests at home as well as abroad. I happen to believe the one person that still believes we haven't found out yet who was behind the anthrax spores last fall. And when we do, there may be a lot of people surprised.
Page 97 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. KAY. On the issue of whether Saddamand I think you made a distinction between Saddam and Iraqi military forcesif we were to use military forces and come at him for regime change, his removal and replacement, I certainly think Saddam would attempt to use it, but I am actually more optimistic that you are dealing at that point with individual missile commanders who, if they know Saddam, and there is little doubt now they understand that if American military force is exercised to replace the regime, I think many of them will cut deals and will decide ''I really shouldn't fire this weapon because I may be held personally responsible, and tomorrow morning may not be the best thing that happens to my family and my life.''
So I think the tactical deterrence and perhaps more so in a terrorist state, we may find a lot of those weapons not used. We are lucky that those weaponsthe command and control system is not one like we would have, and even ours was never always that tight where the President could exercise and it was guaranteed to happen. So I think we may actually escape large scale use of it if we are smart and go at the head of the snake and get the head early before he can do it because a lot of people in IraqI am absolutely convinced that probably no more than 250 or 350 at the very core, that if it is clear they are gone or they are in the process of going. It is going to be much like the end of the Second World War when we worried about the Nazis retreating to the Bavarian Alps.
Where did they retreat to? The American zone. They didn't retreat to the Bavarian Alps. Everyone suddenly wanted a transition from a Nazi to a freedom fighter and being in the American as opposed to the Soviet zone. I suspect if it is clear that we are going to exercise effective military force, we are going to discover a lot of people who always oppose Saddam and were only there because of the terrorism and would like to live a better life.
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Mr. MCINTYRE. So in essenceand you started out, Dr. Kay, by saying Saddam Hussein would attempt to use it. Do you agree with Dr. Spertzel that you believe he is preparing to use these, and he is not just developing them.
Dr. KAY. I am convinced that he is preparing to use them for political effect. The use of a weapon doesn't involve necessarily going off particularly when you have weak neighbors. The intimidation is shadowing effect of showing, demonstrating that it has chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons, at some point will change the politics in the region and get the effect. I think if I were Israel, the possession of nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction in the hands of Saddam Hussein would be fundamentally disturbing because I think he has an animosity and desire to destroy the State of Israel.
Dr. SPERTZEL. I don't think there is any question about the latter, because the one thing that we constantly heard was Israel's taking out the Osirak reactor back in 1981 and that is bitter at all levels.
Mr. MCINTYRE. Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman and that was a very good line of questions. And now the distinguished ranking member, the gentleman from Missouri, Mr. Skelton.
Mr. SKELTON. I want to say a special thanks. It has been one of the best hearings we have had in this room and your efforts are well appreciated. You also point out the old adage that you just can't pit a snake. So we thank you for your comments and I hope a lot of folks heard exactly what you said.
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Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman. And I thank Mr. Spratt too, in supporting the idea that we have some pretty robust hearings. I think this has been good for the whole committee.
Mr. SPRATT. I second what the chairman and Ike said. But let me end on an anecdote. We went toDuncan, I believe you were with us when we went to the Persian Gulf and met Tariq Aziz at the Hotel Rashid. And he began the meeting bythis was before we reflagged the Kuwaiti tankers. It was during the Iran-Iraq war. And he began by chiding us by not giving Iraq greater support. We are fighting your fight for you because after all, you were severely embarrassed by the Iranians and they are certainly not your friend. You should be supporting us more openly and more vigorously. And Larry Hopkins, a Republican Member, spoke up and said, ''Mr. Secretary, if your country was not openly and aggressively using chemical weapons in violation of Geneva conventions, we might be supporting you more openly and vigorously.''
And Tarik Aziz said, ''Well it is a policy, the official policy of my country, to deny that we are using chemical weapons, but I won't maintain that pretense. What I will tell you is that the Iranians are fanatics and if they were to prevail in this war they would take over our country and change it radically, and we cannot permit that to happen and you should appreciate why. And I will say this: Yes, we are using chemical weapons, and if we had nuclear weapons we would use them too.''
Mr. HUNTER. And to note, Mr. Saxton, do you have any final thoughts or questions here?
Page 100 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Gentlemen, once again, thank you very much. I want to thank the members of the committee. I think we have had a great hearing, and I hope you will be available because you have an insight that very few people in the world have because of your experiences in Iraq, attempting to make weapons inspection work. And we now are in a country with millions of citizens and lots of leaders with a need to share in those insights, so you are going to be called upon, I know, a lot in the next several weeks and months, and we appreciate your service to the country.
Thank you. And this hearing is adjourned.
[Whereupon, at 7:21 p.m., the committee was adjourned.]
A P P E N D I X
September 10, 2002
PREPARED STATEMENTS SUBMITTED FOR THE RECORD
September 10, 2002
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