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 19, 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
Thursday, September 19, 2002, Iraq's Weapons Mass Destruction Program and Technology Exports
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Thursday, September 19, 2002
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 19, 2002
IRAQ'S WEAPONS MASS DESTRUCTION PROGRAM AND TECHNOLOGY EXPORTS
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
Hamza, Khidhir, Former Iraqi Nuclear Engineer, Director, Council on MIddle Eastern Affairs
Milhollin, Gary, Director, Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control
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Hunter, Hon. Duncan
Kyl, Senator Jon
Skelton, Hon. Ike
DOCUMENTS SUBMITTED FOR THE RECORD:
[The Documents can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Atomic Bomb and Missile Builders article
Beefing Up the Scud Missile: Who Helped? article
Commentary Magazine article, October issue
Iraqs Bomb, Chip by Chip article
Iraq's Purchases in the A-Bomb Supermarket
Licensing Mass Destruction Report
New York Times op-ed, Monday September 16, 2002
New York Times, Week in Review, September 15, 2002
Saddam Hussein collected Nuts and Bolts and Lethality for his Scuds from the Nations that Deplored him article
Who Armed Iraq? Answers the West Didn't Want to Hear article
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[The Questions and Answers can be viewed in the hard copy.]
IRAQ'S WEAPONS MASS DESTRUCTION PROGRAM AND TECHNOLOGY EXPORTS
House of Representatives,
Committee on Armed Services,
Washington, DC, Thursday, September 19, 2002.
The committee met, pursuant to call, at 10:20 a.m., in room 2118, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Duncan Hunter presiding.
OPENING STATEMENT OF HON. DUNCAN HUNTER, A REPRESENTATIVE FROM CALIFORNIA
Mr. HUNTER. Folks, today the Committee on Armed Services continues its review of the Iraqi threat and United States policy toward Iraq with a specific focus on how the U.S. and the international community should act in concert to restrain Saddam's weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs. This morning's hearing marks the third of a number of planned public sessions designed to inform the committee and the American people on the various issues surrounding Iraq's continued violation of numerous United Nation's resolutions, its illicit development of weapons of mass destruction and the threat that Saddam Hussein poses to the United States and the international community.
Page 8 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC In the past two weeks, the committee received classified briefings from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), and I might add we had yesterday's briefing that we opened up to the full membership, some 83 members of the House beyond the Armed Services Committee membership, and we heard testimony from former senior United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM) inspectors about Iraq's illicit weapons programs; and we have also received the administration's position on Iraq yesterday from Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld.
Next week, the committee will hold another public hearing on U.S. policy toward Iraq, but will hear from private sector foreign and defense policy experts.
Today the committee will learn how the Iraqis built and sustained their weapons of mass destruction programs through the illegal and legal acquisition of technology on the world market, and how the United States' own export control system may have contributed to the problems we are now facing with Iraq.
It is ironic that presently pending before the Congress is legislation to reauthorize the Export Administration Act. The EAA, as it is more commonly known, is a primary legislative vehicle through which the United States exercises control over sensitive dual use items, those with both military and commercial application.
These national security export controls are critical to ensuring that our adversaries and potential enemies don't acquire the high technologies that will threaten the United States national security or reduce the qualitative advantages of our armed forces.
The irony that rather than strengthening these systems of control, the legislation that is being pushed through Congress dramatically liberalizes these key protections making it easier for Saddam Hussein and his ilk to continue their weapons of mass destruction programs.
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This morning our witnesses, who we hope will connect the dots between export controls technology transfers, and Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program are, the gentleman who has been with us many times, and I think one of our most valuable citizens, Dr. Gary Milhollin, Director of the Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control. Dr. Milhollin has been watching and documenting Iraq's WMD programs for years and is also an expert in national security export controls.
And, I might point out to the members and to the American people, The New York Times op-ed written Friday, April 24th, 1992, by Dr. Milhollin entitled Iraq's Bomb, Chip by Chip, in which he traced back all of the contributors, including many Western corporations, of the Iraqi nuclear weapons program.
We are also pleased to have Dr.Doctor, if I butcher your name here, you please correct meDr. Khidhir Hamza, is that close enough for government work?
Dr. HAMZA. That is close.
Mr. HUNTER. Who was a trained nuclear engineer who worked in various parts of the Iraqi nuclear weapons program, both before and after the 1990, 1991 Gulf War. Dr. Hamza will tell us how Saddam Hussein acquired the technologies necessary for its weapons of mass destruction program, even while under the watchful eyes of the United Nations (U.N.) inspectors and the restriction of U.N. sanctions.
Gentlemen, I want to thank you both for agreeing to appear before the committee today, and before we begin, I want to invite the very distinguished gentleman from Missouri, Mr. Skelton, the ranking Democrat on the committee to offer any comments that 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. I thank you for your leadership in quickly scheduling a range of hearings on the issues related to Iraq and its weapons of mass destruction program. We here in Congress, as well as the American people, need to understand clearly the nature of the threat posed by Saddam Hussein so that we can carefully consider what action the United States must take.
The hearings we have had so far with former United Nations weapons inspectors and with Secretary Rumsfeld, General Myers, have presented valuable information about Iraq's weapons programs and the danger they may pose to our country and our allies. I hope that our witnesses today can add to the information we already have by helping us understand just how Iraq built its chemical, biological, nuclear and long-range missile programs, and how he got what he needed. We need to know what is there so we can know how to respond.
Dr. Milhollin has tracked technology transfers to Iraq for quite some time, and Dr. Hamza brings the unique perspective of one who has been inside Saddam's weapons complex.
Gentlemen, we thank you for being here today and we hope you can share some additional light on the threat we face. In considering how Iraq got the weapons of mass destruction, we believe he has today, we must be willing to look at how United States actions may have, however unintentionally, contributed to his effort. Some American products and those of our friends may have gotten through our export control system into Saddam's hands, highlighting how easily technology can move in our global economy. But for me, it highlights too, the need to work hard to fashion an export control system that balances the competitiveness of U.S. industry with our security responsibility to prevent more critical technologies and materials from reaching those who would develop weapons of mass destruction.
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This committee took a step in that regard when we approved a strengthened version of the Export Administration Act, one that seems more important now as we face the possibility of war to dismantle the proliferation we worked so hard to prevent. But in the near term, Mr. Chairman, the immediate challenge facing us is deciding how to proceed against Iraq. Doing that requires the best information possible. That is what I hope our witnesses will focus on today, the detail of Saddam's weapons programs and their insight as to how they can be eliminated. We thank you very much.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Skelton can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. HUNTER. I want to thank the ranking member and remind our colleagues and those listening that I am just filling in for Bob Stump, who is the chairman of this committee, and who is a little under the weather right now, but nonetheless, told me the other day, make sure we had an aggressive schedule of briefings to educate both our members and the American public on this very important issue that is facing us. So, we all wish our chairman well and look forward to him being back with us here in just a couple of days.
Mr. Milhollin, you have been a very valuable resource for this committee, one of the guys that I think kind of people that make this country great and that is that you are an honest broker who is very candid and who tells it like it is in some fairly difficult debates we have historically had on technology control, and this tug of war between what the ranking member described as industrial competitiveness and security interests.
But, we really appreciate the energy you expend and the intellect and evenhandedness that you bring to this issue. Thanks for appearing before us for about the 50th time and, sir, the floor is yours.
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STATEMENT OF GARY MILHOLLIN, DIRECTOR, WISCONSIN PROJECT ON NUCLEAR ARMS CONTROL
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I hope I can live up to that introduction. I am very pleased to appear today to discuss the challenge of Iraq and the relation between that challenge and the export of sensitive technology. I would like to begin by offering for the record some publications that my organization has produced on Iraq, and also, I would request permission to update my written remarks after the hearing if that is appropriate.
Mr. HUNTER. Without objection.
Dr. MILHOLLIN. First, I would like to offer an op-ed from The New York Times written this past Monday on inspections. I have a copy I will provide to the staff; second, an article from commentary magazine, the October issue which also discusses inspections; third, a graphic from The New York Times Week In Review this past Sunday, which describes several dangerous nuclear imports and what we can learn from those imports, including the aluminum tube episode that I think the committee has probably been briefed on.
Then, I would like to also include in the record the article that you just referred to from 1992, which lists U.S. contributions to Saddam Hussein's missile and nuclear sites and, then a graphic, which I have put here on a board, which shows world wide contributions to Iraq's program, and then, finally, a report that my organization prepared on Commerce Department licenses that, in my judgment, contributed very much to Iraq's mass destruction weapon capabilities.
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[The information referred to can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. HUNTER. Without objection, those will be included in the record.
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would like to begin by just saying that there is no question that Iraq has an active weapon of mass destruction program. I know the committee has been briefed on this in detail, but I think perhaps I should just mention briefly that in the nuclear area, we know Saddam Hussein has a workable weapon design, lacks only the fissile material to fuel it, that the risk there is that this material is available many places in the world.
We know that smugglers are after it, and we know we are not likely to get a phone call if on some unlucky day enough to make a few bombs winds up in Iraq. Second, we know that the Iraqis are working on short-range missiles which are permitted under U.N. resolutions, but at the same time, they are using this program to develop the technology for long-range missiles. We also know that Iraq has illicitly held back a few Scuds. We are not sure how many. But, in the event of hostilities, we have to expect that these may be used.
In the chemical weapon area, we know that Iraq has made nerve gas and mustard gas, has weaponized these agents, and I can tell you that in a round table we had recently with U.S. generals, there is a tremendous amount of concern about Iraq's chemical artillery.
Finally, in the biological area, we know that Iraq has made anthrax, and there are also rumors about Iraq's interest in smallpox. So what we are looking at is a rather complete weapon of mass destruction program that we know is possessed of a great capability that is not being carefully inspected or inspected at all, and that we have to assume is still operating. I must say that I might say that our organization maintains a web site in which we try to provide a continuous update of Iraq's weapon of mass destruction status. It is www.Iraqwatch.org. It is an easy place to go to find up-to-date information on all of the programs. And, I have here a printout from today's version which I recommend to the committee.
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I would like to say a few words about how Iraq managed to build these programs. The short answer is with imports. Almost all from the West, and almost all legal. The article that Mr. Hunter held up a moment ago from the New York Times in 1992 was prepared by my organization from U.S. export control records. If you look at this document, you will see that it is entitled ''Iraq's Bomb: Chip By Chip.'' you can see that America's leading electronic companies sold sensitive equipment directly to the Iraqi Atomic Energy Commission where atomic bomb fuel was made, to sites where A-bomb detonators were made, and to the Ministry of Defence which oversaw Iraq's missile and A-bomb development. U.S. exports also went directly to a site called SOD16, which was Iraq's main missile building site. There is no question that virtually every nuclear and missile site in Iraq received high-speed American computers. And, these were all licensed by the U.S. Department of Commerce.
You have to ask yourself, ''Why?'' There were investigations at the time, which this committee perhaps remembers, that revealed that the Commerce Department knew what the risks were, but approved the exports anyway. Why did it do that? Because it was following a policy of preferring trade to national security. I am going to suggest later that we are at risk of doing the same thing now.
The United States was not alone in supplying Iraq. I have produced a graphic here from The New York Times which my organization produced that shows the worldwide contribution to Iraq's programs. You will notice by looking at this graphic that German firms sold as much to Iraq to its mass destruction weapon programs as the rest of the world combined. We produced this pie chart, which is divided down the middle with Germany on one side and the rest of the world on the other. German firms help increase the range of Iraq's Scud missiles. Those increased-range Scuds killed our troops in Saudi Arabia and they also killed Israeli civilians in Tel Aviv.
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I must say, from my own part, I find it shocking that Germany did so much to create Iraq's weapon of mass destruction threat and seems to be the main country in the West today that is least willing to confront it.
As far as I can tell, these exports, the ones that we have tracked, are still a problem today. They have never been fully accounted for. So, if we actually sent troops into Iraq, to counter the mass destruction threat that Iraq poses, I think we have to accept the fact that these troops will be trying to undo what our own Western companies have created.
I would like, also in my testimony, you will notice that I also cite the example of Huawei Technologies. That is a Chinese company that helped Iraq build its air defenses. Today we are sending pilots in to try to destroy those air defenses. Those pilots are taking risks to knock out technology that U.S. exports have helped create. The fiberoptic technology, the switching equipment and other things, high-speed computers that went from Huawei Technologies, from the United States went from some of our leading companies. They made Huawei a big exporter out of a very small, rather insignificant company.
The effect is that by not being prudent in export control with respect to Huawei, we have enabled Iraq to build an air defense network that threatens our pilots. The lesson here is that when you decide on a policy of allowing sensitive exports to go out in order to increase export revenue, those exports don't just go away. They can come back to bite you. So, this is not just a question of trade, it is a question of body bags.
I would like to end my statement here by suggesting that we may be making the same mistake now that we made in the late 1980s, when we created the Iraqi threat that we are still trying to deal with. I am sure the committee has been briefed on the question of aluminum tubes, a shipment that was intercepted on its way to Iraq. Our government sources have been cited as saying they think the tubes were intended for centrifuge needs to process uranium to a nuclear weapons grade. As it turns out, these tubes and their equivalent that is maraging steel and carbon fibers, which can also be used to make the critical part of centrifuges, these are items for Iraq's weapons effort. All of these technologies fit the mass market criteria that are contained in the new Export Administration Act. And, that is why I have opposed this act before this committee. My staff
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Mr. HUNTER. Mr. Milhollin, I hate to hold you up during the statement, but you are saying that the tubes that we are talking about, which some experts believe were to be used for the nuclear weapons program, would, in your opinion, be legalized for sale if we passed the proposed Export Administration Act?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. That is right. I had my staff do a study this week. We called a number of aluminum suppliers in the United States to inquire whether aluminum tubes that meet the export control criteria in the present EAA would be available widely and the answer is ''Yes.'' My staff was able to orderwell, they were invited to order thousands of these tubes from numerous suppliers in the United States.
Now, if you look at the criteria in the new Export Administration Act for mass market items, those criteria would be met by this availability. So what we would be looking at here if we pass the current EAA is that we would be, with one hand, helping Iraq make nuclear weapons, and with the other hand, smashing Iraq for doing so with imports.
I can't believe that this is a wise policy. I don't think our country can have it both ways. We can't be telling the world that we are the leaders in export control, we can't be asking all the other countries in the world to help us keep this material out of the hands of terrorist-supporting nations, and at the same time to facilitate our own industry decontrol it for export.
I know that the members of the committee must be saying to themselves, ''Well, we would never sell this to Iraq, but the fact is, if we can decontrol our own exports, we have no hope of getting other countries to keep the control over theirs.'' This is a game where everybody watches everybody else. And so, if we put trade above national security, everybody else will do so, too. And, the next time our intelligence agencies detect such a shipment, they are not going to be able to stop it because everybody will say this is decontrolled. It is not important. What are you talking about? I think is a risk that we can't take and shouldn't take.
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So that is why I urge the committee to remember when it considers the EAA, that this is a signal to the whole world on nuclear proliferation.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you very much, Dr. Milhollin.
[The prepared statement of Dr. Milhollin can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. HUNTER. And Dr. Hamza, we appreciate you being with us this morning. And, you bring a unique perspective as a former leader of the Iraqi nuclear weapons program. We look forward to your testimony, sir.
STATEMENT OF KHIDHIR HAMZA, FORMER IRAQI NUCLEAR ENGINEER, DIRECTOR, COUNCIL ON MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS
Dr. HAMZA. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, distinguished members. Actually, the remarks from Dr. Milhollin will cover some of my introductory remarks, so I will skip them and go to the next step. Whenever we found the U.S. reluctant to supply us with some of the equipment and materials, for example, we wanted to upgrade our computers in atomic energy from IBM 360 that camea new series at the time to a new series, I believe it was 370, and IBM wanted export license for atomic energy.
Mr. HUNTER. What year was this?
Page 18 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. HAMZA. That was around 1985, 1984. The Japanese NEC Corporation provide us without export license and asked for only a letter that we use this computer for student purposes for teaching. And, they give us the same level of computer that the U.S. required a license for without any licensing.
So, I mean, when we do export controls here, it should be also put as with the view that the other side might sell what we would hold here. For example, at the time a new desktop computer, I believe 368, came out, which is a little bit fast that could be used for various weapon purposes, control and other purposes, and there were restrictions on selling it to countries like Iraq. So, when I went to Hewlett-Packard branch in Baghdad to buy three of these computers for my use, they said we cannot sell it to you from the U.S., but we can sell it to you from Singapore.
So, the same American company which cannot sell us through the U.S. can sell us through its subsidiary in Singapore. So, that should be also kept in mind. But, all the same, what Mr. Milhollin said is true, atomic energy, if you look around about 80 to 90 percent of the equipment we have are from the U.S.
Mr. HUNTER. Are from?
Dr. HAMZA. U.S. Almost all radiation detector equipment, many of the radiation sources, most of the computers, a lot of the materials we use are sourced from the U.S. so, the problem with this, it has to be taken on a larger picture. For example, the U.S. refused to sell us satellite for our Arab sat. Arab sat is run by director general, who is an Iraqi. It is owned by percent by Iraq, 70 percent by Saudi Arabia, but they appointed an Iraqi director who was a friend of mine. And, he says the U.S. export controls were so tight that he tried to find other suppliers and he went to the French and they sold it with no condition. The U.S. concerns were military use. Is this satellite going to be used for military purposes or not. And nobody wanted to sign for that in the region for fear there might be war they might be using it for communication other purposes. So, the first Arab sat was French. The second Arab sat, when the U.S. saw that other suppliers are not as concerned as they are, they relaxed the controls and sold us the second Arab sat almost with no conditions. So, you see, I mean the thing is the export controls has to be either global and with the U.S., also, and it make export control has to also some kind of enforcement from its partners on the other side.
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I try here to give also some sense of the size and the work built of the Iraqi weapons of mass destruction programs. The fissile material, export fissile material acquisition work by Iraq is really a minor concern. It could happen. Iraq could change its policies under pressure and probably try to acquire fissile material the short way or the fast way, but Iraqi nuclear weapon program is a very serious one. It is built around making turning Iraq into a nuclear power in the region. Buying materials in the black market is not a sure thing to do to carry this program through. So, Iraq built a large portion, 90 percent of its program, to actually manufacturing the fissile material locally that is enriching uranium locally. Iraq has a supply of uranium and also has local supplies of uranium from its own deposits. It is not viable as it is in the West but they arefor Iraq cost is not a major factor, and for Iraq they are of significant enough percentage to be possible to extract. So, Iraq has the local uranium resources, all it needs is enrichment to turn this uranium into weapon grade and use and produce as much as it wants nuclear weapon materials.
To get a sense of this, after the Gulf War, Iraq turned its nuclear engineers and nuclear teams into the civilian sector for two reasons. First, to get a way out of the way of the inspectors, and as such, they are not available most of the time for inspectors to talk to; second, when it worked in the civilian sectors, it acquired the civilian sector capability as part of its resources. So, actually, Iraq incorporated all industries outside even atomic energy and all other resources engineering, scientific capabilities, universities, industrial infrastructure in its weapon program.
In 1994, Saddam declared the program to make 1,000 Ph.D.s he called it. It is really a larger scale program to train, on a graduate level, scientists and engineers to be incorporated into the weapons of mass destruction program. It is very hard for the universities to accept this program because what it does, it grants degrees on work it will not see. The universities has to grant masters and Ph.D. For thesis of research it doesn't know, hasn't seen.
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So the law was promulgated forcing the universities to accept our word, the weapons of mass destruction branch's word that this is of this caliber, masters or Ph.D. What this does is incorporate the university structure into the weapons of mass destruction, also. The university professors became unwitting partners to creating the staff needed for the weapons of mass destruction.
So, what we are looking at is really a giant factory, a whole country turned into a giant factory for weapons of mass destruction work on all its phases, whether research or production. So, you have the chemists, the biologists, the physicists, the engineers, all from universities being incorporated into the program. Also, intensive hiring under the umbrella that the atomic energy is now working for the civilian sector, it could incorporate a large amounts of people in its ranks and it is really economically viable because they do take some civilian contracts.
Now, just take the program for the inspectors they would go to atomic energy and they say what is this scientist, he is working in such and such civilian program, he is no longer working for us. They produce contracts and works and in that civilian sector and as such, become unavailable to the inspectors for future debriefing.
Gradually Iraq, and Iraq understood from the beginning that its assets are not just pieces of equipment and facilities, but rather its scientists. Any equipment destroyed can be either built internally or imported later probably a better version and newer model. But, the scientists are its assets. So, it made it difficult for the inspectors to talk to the scientists right from the start. This gradually created tensions between the inspection teams and the Iraqi government minders who make it available to scientists and engineers.
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When the Iraqi government woke up to the fact that the inspectors' main concern after 1996 was the scientists and engineers, things started to going downhill. And, ended up in stopping the inspection process in 1998, and the whole thing collapsed.
Now here is the test: If Iraq is serious about allowing the inspectors back in to check its weapons of mass destruction program, should allow the inspectors to take the Iraqi scientists into a neutral territory and allow them, also, if it has nothing to hide, to take their families with them and the members designate as their immediate families and allow them in a neutral territory without Iraqi minders to be debriefed and talk to inspectors.
My bet is Iraq will refuse this. It already refused when inspectors were talking about this. They called them human vampires, they want to suck Iraqi blood. They took it from the human rights angle.
My guess any of these scientists they came to a neutral territory with his family would ask for asylum somewhere. 90 percent of them would. There are hundreds of millions in its share of Iraqi oil sources that can support those scientists abroad and it can create the equivalent of the U.S. witness protection program for these scientists. This is not new. In 1998, we asked for this and the American Federation of Science actually wrote a letter at the time and we got no answer from the Clinton administration.
Another thing about the inspection regime, there is a defector engineer who was, I believe, interviewed in The New York Times, brought with him contracts of something like 20 sites he built, he is a civil engineer. They included underground small-scale labs with lead impregnated concrete and residents on top of the concrete layers which indicate radiation work. Small underground laboratories everywhere, under bunkers, under palaces, under their buildings.
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Now, this is what he tells us. The other part of the story, there is an organization created in 1995 headed by Saddam's younger son, Qussey. It is called the counter-monitoring group. What it does once inspectors are known where they are going to go, out of 270 inspectors, only 6 were surprise inspections. So, Iraq always knew it was happening. Once Iraq find out where the inspectors are going to go for every site there is a backup site.
The monitoring group, the counter-monitoring organization, what it does, has its own technicians and its own engineers and its own transport system. They go to that site, remove all the relevant equipment, incriminating material, documents, and of course, the scientists and engineers, and take them to the backup site. And, under this system, and this is being divvied up, according to the information we are getting right now has been divvied up is there is a growing organization since 1995 until the inspectors left.
This is not a very viable organization with lots of resources, and its business is to defeat the inspectors. It runs ahead of them, sanitizes sites, removed scientists, removed documents, everywhere the government and this engineer confirmed this to us by telling us for every site, he built a second backup site with the exact same specs. So what we have here is a system that is functioning for a long time now since 1995, that is, is expert at removing equipment and people and materials from anywhere the inspectors want to go.
Now, how the inspectors will find their way around in Iraq when they go back, and how would they be able to find any smoking gun, I don't know, and I don't think they will.
Page 23 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. HUNTER. Dr. Hamza, thank you very much for a very important statement.
[The prepared statement of Dr. Hamza can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. HUNTER. And, what I would like to do is go now to questions, if we could. I had one just to start off with. YouI think the question that is on everyone's mind is, in your estimation, is there a nuclear weapon program going on in Iraq now that is getting close to maturity, and if not, how far away is it?
Dr. HAMZA. Iraq resolved all its nuclear technology bottlenecks in the 1990s. In 1993, it resolved the technology bottleneck for enrichment by diffusion. In 1999, the Germans gave Iraq the complete technology, actually gave Iraq 130 classified reports and installed one complete centrifuge unit and one barshield installation and gave Iraq also all this for $30,000. And, gave Iraq also around 20 carbon fiber cylinders, which are state-of-the-art centrifuge cylinders for around $1 million. This is, according to his lawyer, who came here and talked about it a few years back.
Now, this is something like one year of research given to Iraq up front. So, Iraq now has already the units which were later given to inspectors, but it has the videotapes of the units were installed, how the units were operating and videotapes of the lectures and demonstrations given to them, and they have 130 classified reports that cover all aspects of centrifuge.
Iraq never puts all its eggs in one basket. It has another technology for uranium enrichment which is called diffusion. The switch from diffusion to centrifuge was held up by one critical part which is called the barrier which enriches uranium, the barrier allowed the light uranium to go through the fissile uranium, and the heavier isotope of uranium, less amount goes through so it enriches gradually every time it goes through the barrier.
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Iraq could not develop the barrier until 1987. So, it switched to centrifuge in 1988. In 1993, Iraq developed a fully working barrier. And, as such, declared it also in 1996 in its final declaration. As such, Iraq has two technologies with no bottlenecks into enriching uranium. The aluminum tubes, by the way, could be used for either. What you need aluminum for is aluminum can withstand UF6, which is highly corrosive.
Few materials can withstand that, including maraging steel and aluminum. They can withstand that. They could use them in either. So, if somebody can object that the specs are not high enough or this and that, they could be used in either system. Both systems are ready to go in Iraq. And, both systems require very little imports outside to get them going. My estimate is that Iraq, in two years of complete and putting together enough facilities for full-scale production and within three years, to have enough for two to three nuclear weapons.
Mr. HUNTER. And how many weapons in two or three years?
Dr. HAMZA. Two to three.
Mr. HUNTER. Two to three. Okay. Thank you very much, Dr. Hamza. And Mr. Milhollin, I think the one question that I think came out very clearly from your testimony was a question about thisthe now famous tubes that we are talking about, these aluminum tubes that you say that your analysis of the EAA, the Export Administration Act that is being proposed, would become basically legal. And that the transfer of which would become legal. Is that under the so-called mass market provision that is in that EAA?
Page 25 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. MILHOLLIN. Yes, it is. The mass market provision is found in section 211 of the bill, I believe. And, if you would like, I can just go through the criteria very quickly for you. The firstthe criteria are very broad and, I must say, they are unprecedented. They have never been introduced in any law in the United States yet. The first criterion is that the item must be available for sale in large volume to multiple purchasers, and my staff certainly determined that that was true.
Second, the item must be widely distributed through normal commercial channels. That is also true. There are at least a dozen, and probably scores of distributors in the United States. I would say scores of distributors in the United States and certainly many distributors in foreign countries that make this material and can sell it. The item must be conducive to shipment and delivery by generally accepted commercial meanings of transport, and these tubes can be delivered by truck.
And then, finally, the items may be used for their normal intended purpose without substantial and specialized service provided by the manufacturer. That is also true. So the problem we have is that these criteria are very broad and if you just do experiments with particular items, you will find that it would be very easy to show that not only high strength aluminum, but also maraging steel and carbon fibers would also meet these criteria.
Carbon fibers are used to make tennis rackets. Maraging steel is used to make lots of different things. I think that if this bill becomes law, we are going to find demonstrations that any number of things that have been controlled for a long time will be mass market and therefore, under the bill, the Secretary of Commerce has no discretion. He must decontrol the item.
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So, what concerns me about this is that we are getting excited about something going into Iraq for making nuclear weapons and, at the same time, we seem to be on the verge of decontrolling the same technology. It just seems to me to make no sense.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you.
Mr. SKELTON. Mr. Chairman, I have several questions, but I will reserve them and yield at this time to the gentleman from South Carolina.
Mr. SPRATT. Thank you, Mr. Skelton. Mr. Milhollin, let's be clear. The Export Administration Act which you are describing, which is still pending, would not override would it, the specific import sanctions restrictions imposed upon Iraq? Those would still stand and they would still govern what imports could go to Iraq.
Dr. MILHOLLIN. That is true from the United States. My point is that export controls like this are multilateral, and if the United States drops these controls, so will everybody else. And, we will have no hope of interdicting shipments from the rest of the world for products that no longer are controlled.
Mr. SPRATT. But, every country under the United Nations would still be obliged, whether they were complying or not, to impose these restrictions, import restrictions upon Iraq, except for certain exceptions mostly for humanitarian purposes.
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Dr. MILHOLLIN. Well, if these are dropped from our export control list, there would be no reason to retain them on the special list of goods that isthe special goods control list that has been drawn up for Iraq, because that control list for Iraq is taken from ours and otheris taken from multilateral export control laws. I mean, the wording is identical. So, if we dropped it from here, it is going to be dropped from the U.N. restrictions on Iraq and it will go under oil for food.
Mr. SPRATT. Okay. Mr. Hamza, or Dr. Hamza, you described the futility of inspections. Were you in Iraq at the time that the U.N. inspectors, UNSCOM, uncovered four uranium-enriched, or four different nuclear plants, the centrifuge plant that was then partially constructed, the gaseous diffusion plant that I think you have done a pilot project of? Were you there then, and if so, how is it that they were able to find and destroy these facilities?
Dr. HAMZA. Iraq actually was not very determined to keep all the pieces of equipment. They wanted the controversy over with and the inspectionIraq understood the inspection process as not a serious disarmament process in a sense. The whole inspection process was based on dismantling equipment and facilities, had nothing to do with the knowledge base or the scientists or the engineers.
Mr. SPRATT. Now, how would you do that, though? How would you deal with the brain power base in order to
Dr. HAMZA. For example, initially there was no demand or serious demand by the inspectors to talk to the scientists. And, they accept it. The scientists Iraq offered as a front. They did not go try to get to the base, actual working base of the whole scientific and engineering enterprise.
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Mr. SPRATT. But, did they destroy the physical facilities?
Dr. HAMZA. The physical facilities were destroyed. Iraq didn't care about that, because they can rebuild them. Iraq can rebuild now, a physical plant within months. What remains is the equipment. Equipment can be imported or rebuilt.
Mr. SPRATT. Thus far, that has kept them from building apparently a centrifuge plant, an enrichment plant, has it not?
Dr. HAMZA. How do we know? The order is in the tens of thousands. That tells you it is not a process in which you are trying to make one or two. What is given is two centrifuges. That is all that was given, and some tubes, something like a thousand tubes. That is all the inspectors got. What is imported nowand this is the order that was caught. I don't know if there were others that were not intercepted, is tens of thousands of tubes. That tells you also on the other side that Iraq is now in the plant-building stage, not in the process of research and development. You don't need that many tubes for research and development. You need that many tubes when you are putting together a huge plant for a huge facility.
Mr. SPRATT. What would you do if you were given the authority to write the charter for the new inspectors so that they would have maximum effectiveness?
Dr. HAMZA. That is what I did. That is, ask for the scientists out in a neutral territory and talk to them without minders. Iraq never allowed inspectors in the best of time to talk to the scientists without minders. And, as such, all the information extracted was defective.
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Mr. SPRATT. What if they were authorized to take the scientists out of country, noncoercively but take them out of country for questioning and interrogation?
Dr. HAMZA. That happened once, but Iraq suggested which scientists go in 1993. They went to Vienna. Iraq sent three scientists. They were all party members. They were all loyal such and such. They were not the top scientists and the real active ones. They went to Vienna. The inspectors got nothing out of them and they went back. This is not the kind of debriefing I am talking about. It is actuallybecause now there is much better information on who did what inside Iraq. I mean the U.S. and the international atomic energy know in detail who did what in Iraq and they can precisely say who they want and who is important to talk to.
Mr. SPRATT. Thank you very much, sir.
Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman. Mr. Hefley.
Mr. HEFLEY. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. I'll try to be brief so that others can ask questions. But, Dr. Hamza, I am curious as to what the thinking process was whenaround the lab or around the facilities. What were you told or what did you discuss among yourself was the reason for developing what you were doing, the nuclear program or any other weapons of mass destruction? What was the reasoning given for doing this and focusing on this particular type of program?
Dr. HAMZA. I detail this in my book. The initial impetus for the whole nuclear enterprise in Iraq was a book by Paul Jarda, an American, called ''The Israeli Bomb.'' And, the book states that Israel, within a decade or two, will have something like 200 nuclear weapons. When I went to Iraq in 1970, everybody was talking about that book. And, there were 50 copies of it in the atomic energy library. Saddam read it, and within a year we got his envoys asking us what to do.
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So, the whole thing started as a strategic matter with Israel. Israel has three population centers, so the program was designed initially to produce something like three, four nuclear weapons. So, the reactor, which we bought from France, was more or less enough to do that within, say, a decade. So, it is veryit started as a very basic, a very simple weapon program with no large scale production in mind, just a few nuclear weapons, and that is that, just to counterbalance Israel.
If, some day, we sit around a table with Israel, we have a card in our hands. Then the Iraqi-Iran War started and, thus, Saddam panicked and then he wanted a large arsenal to counter the Iranian hordes, who were coming into Iraq in droves and there was no stopping them. Later on, he found out that he can stop them with chemical weapons. But, all the same, the program was redirected into a larger scale of production possibly. But, the orders we got initially in 1982 is to design a program that could produce up to six nuclear weapons a year. That is a huge program by Iraq, by any small country standard.
So, that is why the diffusion. We went into diffusion and later into centrifuge, which are a larger scale of production than the reactor. The reactor is difficult to duplicate. It limits you by its size. When you make a centrifuge, it is up to your capacity on how many centrifuges you want to make. You make a factory to manufacture centrifuges, and as many you make, as much as you get more product. So a product is not limited in an enrichment facility as it is in our Riyadh facility. That is why we switched later after the Israelis bombed the reactor, the Saudis offered to buy us another one. Saddam accepted the offer in principle, took the money and switched it to an enrichment facility.
Page 31 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC So, enrichment is the Pakistani now what they chose and the new choice for this kind of program, and it would give IraqIraq no longer wants two, three nuclear weapons. That is why I don't think Iraq is very aggressive even after I left. I left in 1994.
I don't think Iraq is very aggressive in trying to purchase this. I think Iraq is aggressive in trying to get enough equipment to produce it locally because this is the long-range prospect of having enough arsenal and a credible deterrence for Iraq for the region to be living under the immunity of this umbrella to do what it wants.
To go more into terrorism, use its other options of chemical and biological weapons, menace the region. Do what it wants with total immunity. To do that it needs several nuclear weapons and a credible deterrence for its system.
Mr. HEFLEY. Thank you very much.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank the gentleman.
Mr. ORTIZ. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I want to welcome both of our witnesses today and Dr. Hamza, let me ask you this question: Prior to the Iran War, and maybe you have touched on this, but I am sorry that I came in a little late, the Gulf War, where did Iraq obtain technology and materials for the different parts of items of mass destruction? And, the reason I ask you is because I see a parallel with what is happening in Afghanistan and what iswhat has happened during the Gulf War in Iraq. Did anybody intentionally arm Iraq with this kind of materials that would develop materials of mass destruction?
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Dr. HAMZA. No. Actually, that is the problem. This thing is not controllable from the outside. There is no way you can control it from the outside because the system is intended to acquire weapons no matter what you do. That is why inspection would be pointless, because if you inspect now and take away what they have, what guarantee do you have in the future they don't put it together back again? The knowledge base is there. The scientists are there and the will is there, a very strong determination. One point on this is since 1995, we didn't have a single person from the weapons of mass destruction leave the country or defect. Not one.
After the defection of Kamel, Saddam's son-in-law, that was the last. Nobody from the core of the program, that is why we have no witnesses there. All the evidence is circumstantial. But also, one should notice that the evidence was circumstantial before the Gulf War that there was an Iraqi nuclear weapon program which was found to be true. Was circumstantial in the case of India and turned out to be true. So most nuclear weapons case all you can find about them is some indications where they are going and most of the time it is true.
Now, Iraq was not supplied intentionally with weapon technology, but the man who gave us the centrifuge technology, Qadeer, was tried in Germany. And, the judge found the German government so complicit and so knowing if what he is giving us and doing nothing about it, he sentenced him only to time served. He did not put him in jail for more than the time he already spent.
And this is also another lesson. I mean, the only man caught giving us weapons of mass destruction technology was sentenced to time served. Nobody ever went to jail for providing us with the technology for weapons of mass destruction.
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Mr. ORTIZ. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. HUNTER. Okay. I thank the gentleman.
Mr. BARTLETT. I want to thank our two witnesses very much. Appreciate your testimony. Mr. Milhollin, clearly we are on the horns of a dilemma. On the one hand, we do not want to sell material to Iraq that could be used in their weapons programs. On the other hand, we are having a very difficult time maintaining an adequate military industrial base in this country.
Now, most of the materials that are listed in your two charts are dual-use materials and many of them are widely available for a number of other sources in the world. Now, how do we determine what we will export and what we will not when on the one hand, the material is dual use material, broadly available, could be used for other programs, broadly available from other places in the world while on the other hand, we are trying very hard to maintaining an adequate military industrial base. Whichever way we make that decision, we are putting at some risk our national security, are we not, and how do we decide what is the right balance there? If we cannot maintain an adequate and military industrial base, are we not putting our national security at some risk?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. You are correct. It is a decision and you are correct thatbut, I would say that there is an assumption which I would question and that is that export controls have a negativehave a significant negative impact on our military industrial base. I don't think the case for that can be made. The items that are controlled are only those items that can bethat if diverted can be specifically useful in making weapons of mass destruction. That slice of our economy is very tiny.
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Mr. BARTLETT. You think that is such a small percentage of what we export that we are not putting our industrial base at risk by denying those exports?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. No question. I mean, the numbers prove it. Right now, first of all, we are approving over 90 percent of everything that even goes through the licensing process. So, the number of things that are actually denied is only a tiny fraction of that which goes through the process. And, that which goes through the process is only a tiny fraction of our economy. It is something like a fraction of, a small fraction of 1 percent. Youthere is no sense or sensitive enough to measure any kind of economic and employment impact on the United States from export controls. Because they have such a slight impact.
So for me, I think that prevention is much cheaper than cure. That is, Iraq gives you the case where you are going to have to cure a problem created by loose export controls and the cure is expensive. It is expensive in lives. It is expensive in money and expensive in just in the time it takes our government to figure out what to do about this. I think that far outweighs the small cost to our industry, to the small number of companies that actually make things that are controlled.
Mr. BARTLETT. There is an old adage that says that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. We somehow forget that today when we have broken our ties with the common sense past, haven't we? Let me ask you a question about weaponizing these biological agents. I think that everybody recognizes that it is very much easier to produce these biological weapons than it is to weaponize them. And, until you are able to weaponize them, even though you may have very large quantities of these, you may be very ineffective in using these. How robust is the Iraqi program at weaponizing these agents?
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Dr. MILHOLLIN. My expertise is primarily in nuclear and missile technology, and so I would like to use this as a preface to the answer I give. I think that from reports we have heard, that there is an estimation that Iraq did make progress in weaponizing anthrax. But, whether that progress is sufficient so that it could today launch a successful anthrax attack, I am not so sure I know the answer to. But, it is an excellent question. Of course, the absence of inspections makes it all the more difficult to answer with any kind of confidence since it has been four years since we have really done any inspections in Iraq.
Mr. BARTLETT. Let me ask a question about weaponizing smallpox. It's my understanding the best way to weaponize smallpox is to find a dozen or so people that are willing to be infected with smallpox and die as a result of that infection, and then to travel broadly in this country going to ball games and circulating through airports. You don't even have to go through the security perimeter in the airport to interface with a large number of people. You are familiar, I am sure, with the dark winter where the agent was releasing only three places and in that exercise, it took a great while to contain and it spread, I think, to 35 states and 15 foreign countries before we contained it. Isn't this the best way to weaponize smallpox.
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Could very well be. That is, I guess, a possibility that someone has imagined. I have quite a bit of natural human imagination. I suspect that if we all sat around for a while, we might be able to come up with something better or worse, I guess, depending on how you define it.
Mr. BARTLETT. That is worse enough, isn't it?
Page 36 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. MILHOLLIN. Yeah. It is bad enough as it is. I think from what I know about smallpox and now with the kind of travel we do, it would be a very serious threat, even if a few people had it. Sobut again, I must say honestly that I am not going to try to pronounce a subject for which I am perhaps not your best witness.
Mr. BARTLETT. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. HUNTER. Is the gentleman concluded?
Mr. BARTLETT. Yes, sir, which is why I thanked you, sir.
Mr. HUNTER. Okay. I thank the gentleman. And Mr. Taylor. And incidentally folks, we are going to have three votes here. I think, you know we are going to get broken up during the day as we get into the noon hour. I am inclined to keep going here, and maybe Mr. Saxton, if you could maybe go vote and come back and I could make at least that first vote. I think we need to keep going and get this hearing done. So, Mr. Taylor.
Mr. TAYLOR. I thank both of you gentlemen for being here. And, I am very much alarmed by what you tell me. I guess I have been here long enough to hear the critics say that the Clintons were weak on defense, so therefore they were asleep at the switch and the Republicans were pro business, and so therefore they were asleep at the switch. If somebody had a buck to be made, then they are going to cooperate with them. In an ideal world, how would you put better controls on American technology leaving our shores and getting into the hands of people who would potentially harm us. You outlined the problem well enough to get my attention. How would you solve the problem?
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Dr. MILHOLLIN. That question is to me, sir?
Mr. TAYLOR. Yes, sir, please. Or, both of you.
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Shall I go first? I think at a minimum we need to understand that export controls have been greatly reduced since the Cold War, but that we are in a new war and we need new kinds of export controls for that war. And that war is just as serious as the Cold War. And, yet we are facing it with a weaker system. I would go back and review decontrol decisions that we have made over the last decade under the understanding that the world had changed, threats were gone essentially because the Cold War was over and that we didn't need to worry about the spread of technology that could help terrorists.
I would look at things we decontrolled. I would also look at what terrorist nations, terrorist supporting nations and terrorist groups need most to make the kind of weaponry that we think is most likely to be made, and then I would try to identify the technologies necessary for that and draft a new set of export controls that are designed for the post September 11 world. I think we need to put our best experts to work on that and we need to do it.
In the case of the pending bill, it was conceived and debated before September 11. So I think the first thing we need to do is treat that bill as a piece of ancient history and agree among ourselves that we need to start over and we need to think through a new set of export controls specifically aimed at things that threaten us the most, which is internationalone of which is international terrorism. So that is what I would do.
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Mr. TAYLOR. Dr. Hamza.
Dr. HAMZA. I am not very familiar with the exact rules so I will restrict myself to the following; that is
Mr. TAYLOR. What troubles me, Dr. Hamza, is we make good rules and then we give either the Secretary of Defense or the sitting President the availability to waive them. Let's face it. How do you get to be President? You accept campaign contributions. Do those campaign contributors sometimes call the President, and say ''Gee, I would like this rule waived.'' It is not going to hurt American security. It's my opinion they probably do. So, in addition to just taking that loophole out, what else would you do?
Dr. HAMZA. Let me give another, the other side of the view here. Dr. Milhollin is very well versed in what is going on here. Let me just present the problems we have there and what would exports do for us. We had the electromagnetic enrichment of uranium. The electromagnetic is all unclassified. That is why it was chosen initially. This is the largest program we had. The centrifuge was a minor program. Now, it is our main program because of technology exports. The program was hampered for simple things like vacuum parts, things that pump the air out of the equipment, high voltage sources, sparking, things like machining to a certain tolerance.
So now, if you want to put exports, such that we will not do what we can do, then all these equipment has to be under some kind of restriction to a country like Iraq. This is very broad. This covers huge sectors, high voltage; I mean, how can you stop a country from importing high voltage equipment. Vacuum pumps. They are used everywhere in making liquid nitrogen and making oxygen and making all kinds ofsobut these things stopped us. For ten years we could not get over them to a degree that we will have a production system. We stayed in the pilot plant stage with the few units trying to get resolve the problems of these units because we couldn't resolve the basic simple technologies involved.
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So if you are looking at a country like Iraq and want to stop it through technology controls, through export controls, I think it will be a very hard and very broad. I mean, after all, I mean 90 percent what have goes into a nuclear weapon is regular technologies, machining, casting, furnaces, equipment like this, fuses, some simple electronics and some complicated also, electronics. But, so, I don't know. I cannot help in this because what I look at is what we built is 90 percent of regular import. Some ten percent are the sensitive ones and these are probably the ones one should keep an eye on.
Mr. TAYLOR. Mr. Chairman, I see the red light, but apparently we are all willing to miss this very important procedural vote.
Mr. SAXTON. Actually Mr. Taylor, Ms. Davis is sitting anxiously waiting for her chance.
Mr. TAYLOR. Okay. If I could, for the record, I would like both of you to tell me how many years do you think it will be, if it has not already occurred, before either a terrorist state or a terrorist organization purchases a working weapon of mass destruction from the former Soviet Union. Because, I am still dumbfounded why anyone tries to go to all the trouble of building a bomb when apparently there is so much material and so many weapons available in the former Soviet Union in apparently a nation that is in chaos.
Mr. SAXTON. If you could
Mr. TAYLOR. For the record. I understand Ms. Davis wants to get to her questions.
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Mr. SAXTON. Yeah, we are going to let you answer that perhaps in writing.
Mr. TAYLOR. Unless you can say it in a word or two, I am sure she could forgive me that.
Mr. SAXTON. Do you want to take 30 seconds? But, we really need to move on to Ms. Davis because of the situation we find ourself in with votes.
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Do you want us to answer in 30 seconds or do you want us to just
Mr. SAXTON. I guess we prefer that you submit your answer to us in writing at this point. Is that all right, Mr. Taylor?
Mr. TAYLOR. Sure.
[The information referred to can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. SAXTON. Ms. Davis. Here's whatwe are in a series of three votes. Mr. Hunter left to catch the first vote. He is going to come back so I can catch the second two votes and so we will try to accommodate your time by continuing to move forward. Ms. Davis.
Page 41 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. I'd prefer not to miss the first vote, Mr. Chairman, but
Mr. SAXTON. You and I are going to run over there together.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. I will do this as quickly as I can. Dr. Hamza, you made a statement earlier. You said in quotes that even if the, you know, the inspectors go over and they were to remove, you know, whatever Saddam has over there, that it wouldn't make any difference because in your words, the will is there and a strong determination. Where is that will coming from? Is it just Saddam Hussein? If Saddam Hussein were to be removed, are you saying that that wouldn't matter either, that there is still the will and the strong determination by whom?
Dr. HAMZA. It is not just Saddam. It is also the Bath Party, which came on the basic idea of revival of Iraq's power or our power and also as implemented by Saddam, this meant to him that is more weaponry and more militarization of the whole country. They understood, they call it a struggle for survival. To be a struggle through military and armament and as such, their basic aim is to have a fighting force, which is basically impregnable and basically the strongest in the region and do their own through their own will build that fighting force using Iraq's huge oil resources as a basis.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. So the entire party would have to be removed from the government?
Dr. HAMZA. The whole party system has to be removed which is ingrained. It has its own literature, its own law, its own history. It is huge. It is like the Communist Party.
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Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. If Saddam Hussein or the party had a nuclear weapon completed, ready to be used, and this is an opinion from you, what do you think he would do with it?
Dr. HAMZA. It depends. If he is in a corner, he will use it. That was made clear during the Gulf War when he ordered us to make one crash nuclear weapon and it is called the crash nuclear weapon, which is declared by Iraq in 1996 and is officially admitted by the Iraqi government to turn the French fuel we had into one nuclear weapon.
Now that makes no sense unless you intend to use it as a last resort. What would you do with one nuclear weapon? If you test, you lose it. So that terrified us at the time and our chemists saved us by dragging their feet and claiming they cannot get 18 kilograms we need to make one nuclear weapon out of the French fuel, which is 31 kilogram. So there is the intent. Then, they made two other crash programs, which are chemical and biological weapons, which were put on the way of the U.S. forces in case they came to Baghdad. We don't know what they intended to do with them. Our guess, and the word was they would be blown up on the face of whatever incoming force there is and claiming that the Air Force destroyed them.
So this is one angle also to watch out for, is that the depots he can use. So, it is just the total belief that weaponry, especially weapons of mass destruction, because Iraq cannot make any other kind of weaponry, it cannot make conventional weapon. The weapons of mass destruction is all it can make is the base for the survival of the regime and its power base.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. Well, it interests me that you said, I believe the program in 1987, if I am correct what you said, was to develop six a year. I find that a little more than just, if I am backed into a corner.
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Dr. HAMZA. That is the orders we got. We had to reduce that order actually gradually and make it into something like we could live with, like two a year, but we always got back orders that once we are through this stage one, we have to think ahead of time and to jump in to a larger production facility.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentlelady, and you have got about a minute left on this vote, but I think that they will hold it open for a while as they usually do on the first one, soI thank her for her line of questions.
Gentlemen, let me take you back to Mr. Spratt's questions, and this is kind of a complex thing and let's kind of walk through what we have in terms of controls, what we had before 1991 and what we put in place afterwards. The essence, I think of Mr. Spratt's questions, Mr. Milhollin, was the effect that we stillthere are still ostensibly controls in place, for example, for the aluminum tubes, even if the tubes fit under this so-called classification of something that is mass marketed. And, your response was that you are still going to have a problem as a result of us essentially legalizing those sales. Could you explain that in a little more detail?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Right now, aluminum tubes are controlled for export by all the countries in the nuclear suppliers group, which contain, which includes most of the countries in the world that can make aluminum tubes of this kind. That is also true for maraging steel and carbon fibers. So if we look around the world, we see our principal trading partners and allies controlling things in the same way we do. They control all of these technologies for export, which means thatit doesn't mean that there is a prohibition against the export. It means that if you want to sell it to somebody, you have to get a license and the reason for that is that these things are speciallycan be used to make nuclear weapons.
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Well, if we detect a shipment on the way somewhere of a controlled technology, the fact that it is controlled gives us a diplomatic place to stand when we talk to the country that is supplying it. We can say to them, ''Look, this is controlled. You have obligations here. We don't think you are meeting your obligations, therefore we are asking you to stop this shipment.'' If theif we change our law now and de-control these things, we will no longer have that platform. There will no longer be any basis for saying to another country, ''Look, you are undermining world security by selling this, because there won't be any decision by the world or by multithrough a multilateral export control regime that these things are dangerous and should be restricted.'' That is my point.
Mr. HUNTER. You know, I thought that the one statement by Dr. Hamza wasreflected a tragedy in the way our system works in that you mentioned Hewlett-Packard having told you that theyyou couldn't buy a certain system from them directly, but you could buy it from their Singapore outlet. What was that system again, Dr. Hamza.
Dr. HAMZA. Just at the time the 368 process for the desktop computer, which just came out, was restricted for a country like Iraq. Just a simple desktop computer.
Mr. HUNTER. But nonetheless, simple things like that are important for your weapons programs, are they not?
Dr. HAMZA. Yes. We bought a fax machine also this way from London, which was fast at the time for our weapon design program.
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Mr. HUNTER. But, Hewlett-Packard told you that they couldn't sell that to you directly from a U.S. outlet of Hewlett-Packard, but that you could go to their Singapore store and buy it. And, the reason I think that is such a tragedy is because David Packard was such a great American defense leader.
At one time, I believe was head of Defense Research and Engineering for a U.S. administration. Was certainly a chairman of the Packard Commission onand lent a great deal of expertise to our country in terms of trying to keep us strong and invulnerable. And yet, his company, ultimately playing by the rules, but nonetheless, I think, disserving our country, was essentially allowing an end-run around American laws. And, I think that is one of theI think is one of the real problems and real tragedies with our export laws that they allow us, if you manipulate them correctly, or you circumvent them, you canyou can, while complying with the letter of the law, certainly not comply with the spirit of the law and certainly not with the requirements of being a good citizen and trying to protect national security.
But, I want to go back to 1991 because I can recall that after the war, we had a number of statements to the effect, the same effect as Dr. Milhollin has given us now, that we helped to built that military apparatus, and you heard in Congress a lot of resounding ''Never again shall that happen.'' And yet, Dr. Hamza, in the 1990s, the mid 1990s after the war was over, you were involved in the continuing weapons program for Saddam Hussein, is that correct? And, that weapons program continued even though we had inspectors in the country. Is that right?
Dr. HAMZA. Yes, 1993, as I mentioned, for example, the diffusion process, the bottleneck which, in the diffusion process for uranium enrichment, was a barrier. It was completed in 1993 when the inspectors were there.
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Mr. HUNTER. So again, now, it has beenthe point has been made by several members. They have pulled out these charts that showed how much we seized, almost like the Mexican government showing how much cocaine has been stopped from delivery across the border, and what they don't show us is how much activity continued to go on. And so, what you are saying is the nuclear weapons program was continuing even while we were trotting out these seizures and announcing with great flourishes that certain facilities had been shut down.
Obviously, other facilities that we didn't know about were being opened up and were operating; is that right?
Dr. HAMZA. That is correct.
Mr. HUNTER. Well, then would you basically agree withwhen we had two inspectors in here last week who told about their frustrations and their feeling that they made almost no progress. And, one of our members said, ''Well, what depth of inspection do you need to be sure that you are really sanitizing that entire weapons complex.'' And, the answer was, ''You need virtually an occupation of the country to be able to know that.'' Is that your
Dr. HAMZA. Yeah, that's correct, because in no other way can you really get around to know where things are and get your hand on them because somebody is carrying before you go there and picking things ahead of you. And, unless you have a force to really control this, what is going on, there is no way you can get your hand on serious.
Page 47 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. HUNTER. Yeah. I think the person who was told two weeks ahead of time that an inspection team was going to be at a certain facility, and when they arrived, there were lots of nuclear weapons materials lying around and then he had to go explain that to Saddam Hussein. I would hate to be in his shoes at that point. It would be an act of gross negligence on the part of one of their governmental officials notafter they got the tip-off that the inspection team was coming, not to have moved the materials. So, it looks like we are going through an exercise, which is totally symbolic in nature, to invite inspectors back in on the basis that somehow that is going to solve this problem.
Dr. HAMZA. How would it solve in the future? Suppose we solve it. We agree. I don't agree we are going to solve it now even. What is there cannot be found now. It is already organized in such a way it is impossible to find. But, suppose you did find it. Suppose inspectors can claim knowledge they don't have and can go in and take what is there. What guarantee do you have it is not going to put together, put back together again in the future and the whole program won't be rejuvenated and working in say two years from now, three years from now?
So, the whole thing depends on the will of the government. If the government is not willing to give this up, and it is not, for obvious reasons, throughout all the time and all the problem going everybody is going through, it lost hundreds of billionswell, I don't know, 100, 120 billion in oil revenues to keep the system.
So, what guarantee is there, with a government that accepted such a huge loss, not to allow the system to be dismantled, it will in the future somehow forget about it and drop this option and let everything go? What kind of guarantee anybody has? Would anybody be really ready to guarantee this?
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Mr. HUNTER. Let me ask you another question. It has been mentioned that Saddam Hussein ishas, and you mentioned that he basically got his scientists together and said we must move out on a program and have a nuclear weapons program. Did hedid you regularly get communications from Saddam Hussein or from his offices to the nuclear weapons community, to the scientists community?
Dr. HAMZA. I have just to make a point that Saddam founded all the WMD programs and the missile. He took over atomic energy personally, as chairman in 1973.
Mr. HUNTER. He took it over personally?
Dr. HAMZA. Personally. He ran all the WMD programs personally. He chose the administrators, he chose the staff, most of the senior staff. He also took away the financing of the WMD from the general government budget and made it into the revolutionary council budget, which is separate. So, he personally, because he runs the revolutionary council even when he was Vice President. The President never attended the meetings of the revolutionary council, so automatically as vice president, he became the chairman. So, the whole budget was appropriated by him. The actual personnel chosen was by him. The approval of the programs were by him from day one.
I mean, I went as a head of the Iraqi delegation to France in 1974 to purchase a reactor through his orders. He was my chairman then. And, wewhen we suggested negotiating a nuclear cooperation treaty with the France, India, he went personally and signed them, in France and in India. So, youthis is his own creation. The whole WMD program, in all its phases is his personal creation. And, he nurtured it personally and followed it personally. There is nothing in the world that would make him give it up.
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Mr. HUNTER. Did you have any conversations with him?
Dr. HAMZA. Yes.
Mr. HUNTER. Tell me about the nuclear reactor that the Israelis destroyed inwas it 1982?
Dr. HAMZA. In 1981, June 1981.
Mr. HUNTER. Was that reactor devoted to the weapons program?
Dr. HAMZA. That reactor was actually internationally supervised facility. We wereDr. Jaffer and I, the head of the nuclear program now there. We were actually planning on using it in some kind of arrangement to irradiate some extra uranium, which we have, and extract the plutonium out of that in a facility provided to us by the Italians. So, it was a slow, long-range process because the French were there. Inspectors will come every six months to inspect this facility. When the Israelis bombed out that reactor, true, it delayed our program for some time. But, it was a relief to Saddam. He just did not want everybody looking over our shoulder what we are doing and we are cheating with the extra time we can find.
He wanted a totally secret program, totally at our control. So when the Saudis offered to buy us another reactor, he refused. He took the money and diverted it into the enrichment program. He asked what alternative can we have to build our own system, and we told him it is enrichment. He jumped the staff from 400 working in the French reactor to 7,000 in 5 years. The budget raised from 400 million to 10 billion by the onset of the Gulf War.
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Mr. HUNTER. To ten billion?
Dr. HAMZA. To ten billion, the cost of the program at the onset of the Gulf War. So, actually what we had, what we started with, which was a nuclear program to basically ongoing to make two or three nuclear weapons or four max, turned into a large entity, which is meant to produce a larger amount of nuclear weapons and turn Iraq into a serious nuclear power in the region.
Mr. HUNTER. And, in your estimation, we have heard a lot of estimates from U.N.the U.N. analyses as to how close Iraq was to having a nuclear weapon at the time of the Gulf War. How far away were you at that time?
Dr. HAMZA. Actually, Ambassador Butler gave a very accurate estimate, which is six months.
Mr. HUNTER. You were about six months away?
Dr. HAMZA. Yeah, six months away.
Mr. HUNTER. And yet, the Western analyses before we had the war, the projections were that you were three to five years away.
Dr. HAMZA. Yeah, exactly. And, that is
Page 51 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. HUNTER. To what do you attribute that, because we have a lot of people we send to college and send to intelligence schools and are supposed to be great analysts of intelligence information, and yet they were totally off, obviously, with that estimate.
To what do you attribute that huge disparity between what we thought Saddam had and what you, as a member of his nuclear weapons program, say you really did have, which was a six month time table? I mean, that ended up making a lot of congressmen look like fools because the congressmen, some very prestigious congressmen, would get up on the Senate and House floor, and would talk about how we had three to five years and how we should have sanctions against Iraq and slowly they would come around. And yet when we got there, we had this six month timetable we were dealing with. To what do you attribute the gap between what we thought Iraq had, three to five-year program, and what they really had, which was six months to a nuclear weapon.
Dr. HAMZA. It is security, the huge security, which controlled the flow of information out of Iraq. The security was so tight and so brutal, even people who defected did not talk about the program. I heard a man who was in charge of the communication between the tests for the bomb, testing explosives, and the equipment in an underground facility. And, he defected.
And, we were terrified that at the time because security was hovering around us, how did you let him go and everybody was banging us all the time that actually Kamel said that is it. Everybody will know now. And, nobody knew because he didn't talk. He was afraid for his family. So, the security was so tight and so brutal and retribution, that anybody, even those who left, did not talk.
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So, in the end, the flow of information is what deceived everybody. For example, during the Gulf War, you bombed only three seriously out of seven sites doing nuclear weapons. The nuclear weapon facility itself, of which this guy ran out, the one I just told you about, the communication engineer. Okay, this is the man who left, he knew this facility. The U.S. did not know about it. They did not bomb it.
So, the main nuclear weapons site was unknown. Three other sites were unknown. Out of seven sites, the U.S. bombed only three seriously and one was hit incidentally. This is control of information. This is security. Human intelligence is just not there. And, when you don't have it, there is no way you can tell what is going on down there.
Mr. HUNTER. What happened to the fissile material that you had at the time of the Gulf War?
Dr. HAMZA. It was French fuel actually, which was bomber grade. And, it was delivered to the inspectors. Some of the roads were chopped for an experimental reason, butto experiment with extracting the uranium out of it. But most of it wasremained intact and all of it with the chopped pieces was delivered to the inspectors.
Mr. HUNTER. So, what you had at that time was confiscated and that is what set the Iraqi program back again was the war and the interruption of the program and the war.
Dr. HAMZA. Yes. The war and the six months was to make that one weapon. That was the estimate. It is not that a production facility would be on-line, no. It was not six months away. What would be in the six months is one nuclear weapon using the French fuel.
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Mr. HUNTER. And, then you would havethe production line to make more weapons would have followed on after that.
Dr. HAMZA. Yeah. That was down the road, something like two, three years.
Mr. HUNTER. Dr. Milhollin, it is a great opportunity to have you here at the same time as Dr. Hamza, because you are able towe are able to get some insight literally from the inside and also have your analytical capability at hand. What are yourdo you have any observations having listened to Dr. Hamza and understand what was going on on the other side of thisof these technology transfers and in any lessons for the United States that you think we should learn from this?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Well, first I would like to say that I believe the reason for the difference in the estimates is that the intelligence community, giving the estimates of three to five years, assumed that the French fuel and some Russian fuel also in Iraq would not be diverted from international safeguards because they were being inspected by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
Mr. HUNTER. But, how often were they being inspected?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Not often enough, obviously.
Mr. HUNTER. Dr. Hamza, how often?
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Dr. HAMZA. Presumably every six months, but that is when it started. After the six months, we immediately got the order to
Mr. HUNTER. So, I mean, what do you have? You have Saddam Hussein's promise that he really, truly is not going to use it for a weapon.
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Well, one of the problems was the IAEA's rules. They had rules for what they called material balance areas. And, if you didn't have enough for a bomb in a particular area, then you didn't have to inspect it as often.
So, we had these inspections every six months because the agency took the position that you shouldn't add all the amounts up in the country. We learned after the war began that, in fact, Iraq had enough material for one bomb, but it was spread out at different locations. But, because of the IAEA rules, they weren't inspecting it every three weeks as they would have to do if it were all in one place.
So, we had a problem with the IAEA's own rules, that was only discovered after the war began. But again, I think the difference for the estimates, the difference in the estimates is the assumption that it would not be thethe material would not be diverted. I think if you asked the CIA how long it would take if the material was subverted, they would have had a different answer.
Dr. HAMZA. I have some comment on this. Actually, it is worse than this. The International Atomic Energy Agency, despite reports in Der Spiegel and other journals about the Germans providing us with the technology for uranium enrichment, declared Iraq to be clean in the area of nuclear weapons. So, the whole structure that was built around a destroyed reactor basically, the French reactor was destroyed and atomic energy kept growing. And, inspectors were there.
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Nobody asked ''What are these buildings doing here? There is no reactor. What are you working on?'' So what was going on is a huge infrastructure built up to make nuclear weapons, and at the same time, the IAEA vouching for Iraq that Iraq is not working on nuclear weapons despite all kinds of reports being in the media about Iraq purchases and Iraq acquisition of nuclear technology, which is meant for nuclear weapons.
Mr. HUNTER. Is there a chance that there is right now an operating centrifuge facility in Iraq that we simply don't know about?
Dr. HAMZA. I believe, yes. I believe Iraq is now in the pilot plant stage for centrifuge production. I mean, it has some several units of centrifuge together. Of course, you need thousands to be in the production stage. But, I believe Iraq has several centrifuges right now in working order. The order for the aluminum tubes indicate that this is past.
Mr. HUNTER. That this is what now?
Dr. HAMZA. That this is done. This is past. What is coming on is a production system, and for the production system, you need a huge number of tubes. But, Iraq is already over the pilot plant stage.
Mr. HUNTER. Well, when you say they are already over the pilot plant stage, you think there is a chance that they may have enough material now to make a bomb?
Page 56 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Dr. HAMZA. No. In the pilot plant stage, you don't get enough material to make a bomb. You get probably few kilograms at most over several years. Pilot plant stage would be something like 50 units operating 20, 30, 40, 50 units. What you need for a bomb is 1,000 and over. Then you can have probably enough for a bomb in a couple of years. Several thousand you will have enough in one year for a bomb.
Mr. HUNTER. Is there anynow you have seen, Dr. Hamza, the discussion about these tubes, and speculation about them. Is there any doubt in your mind but that these tubes were to be used for the nuclear weapons program.
Dr. HAMZA. No. Not with the specifications that we have been hearing about. They are high technology quality, not usually used or intended for use in ordinary, mundane everyday things. These are technologically viable tubes for a nuclear weapon program.
Mr. HUNTER. Did you ever order these tubes yourself?
Dr. HAMZA. No, I am not part of the enrichment until later part. I stayed with the enrichment untill 1985, and then left it and became Advisor to Atomic Energy, and later on worked in the nuclear weapon. Enrichment is another group. But, I was aware of what was going on because I used the output as the head of the nuclear weapon program for a while.
Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Mr. Milhollin, tell us a little bit about, from your perspective, what is the state of security with respect to technology transfers going to countries like Iraq pre-'91 and post '91? Did we really improve things with respect to the flow of militarily useful technology out of the West?
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Dr. MILHOLLIN. Well, during the mid and late 1980s, we had a policy of building up Saddam Hussein as a counter to Iran. That policy resulted in sharing intelligence information. It also resulted in directions in effect from the White House to the Commerce Department to facilitate dual-use exports to Iraq. This policy resulted inI guess, I have to be fairit resulted in a bending of the rules. Things were being held up because our government knew that they were sensitive, they were going to places that we knew were making missiles, we knew were making nuclear weapons or at least we suspected were making nuclear weapons.
But, political pressure from the White House caused the government to lower the barriers, and this technology went out. That happened in the late 1980s. It is a sad story, but it is, nevertheless, undeniable.
Did we learn anything from this? We did. There was an effort after the Gulf War to increase export controls. Wethere was an effort to adopt what is called a catch-all clause, meaning if you know something is going to a nuclear, chemical, biological or advanced conventional weapon program, you have to apply for a license. But, that was about it. At the same time that the Gulf War taught us that we had had inadequate controls with respect to Iraq, the Cold War was ending.
And so, we had our industry demanding that since the Coordinating Committee for Multilateral Export Controls (COCOM) was directed at the Soviet empire, and since the Soviet empire was dissolving or had dissolved, that we didn't need COCOM anymore. And, COCOM was the bedrock for Western export controls. So, our government, on the one hand, was deciding that we needed to do better on things like Iraq or countries like Iraq, but on the other hand, was being pressured to reduce export controls to everybody else. So, what we did was, overall we cut the control list so that now we are only controlling about ten percent of what we controlled in 1989.
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Mr. HUNTER. In your estimation, is that dangerous?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. I think it is very dangerous. We are just now controlling, because of industry pressure, the very top slice of dual use technology. That is, only the most highly performing machine tools and so forth, whereas you can do a lot with things that operate under those levels.
Mr. HUNTER. That is what, you know, the one thing that struck me when we looked at the nuclear tests in Pakistan and India, and correct me if I am wrong, because you gentlemen are experts. But, I heard a comment from the scientific community, that what kind of surprised us was, they got a lot of the technology right out of the open from the United States, because our people didn't think that anybody would want to make a mid-grade nuclear weapon or a crude nuclear weapon. We all thought that the only thing that would be utilized would be high-end stuff. But, in the end, a lot of the stuff that they used was published information; is that accurate?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Well, as Mr. Hamza has said, and he is quite right, almost every component of a nuclear weapon is made with dual-use equipment. Very few things in a nuclear weapon require specialized things, specialized equipment that is dedicated to nuclear weapon manufacture.
Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Now, on that point, let me go to something that is in the EAA or in the proposed EAA. This committee has always required close scrutiny by the Department of Defense. We have got a provision that says that if the Secretary of Defense says that an item doesn't go, it doesn't go.
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That has always been opposed by industry, and they give a number of reasons. They say that the Defense Department is too slow, and ''We will take care of everything in Commerce.'' But, the point is sometimes you need to have some insight into the military application of what ostensibly looks like a commercial technology or a benign technology to know what the real value of that technology is to a weapons system, and sometimes that is an insight that only a Department of Defense expert might have.
So, if you show it to somebody who is from the Department of Commerce, who is used to checking out various grades of flour products, he may not understand, for example, as we didn't understandI believe it was 1972 when we sold the Bryant grinders to Russia that makes tiny ball bearings. We found out later they used these tiny ball bearings to accurize their SS18 warheads aimed at the United States. We didn't realize those Bryant grinders had the dual-use of being potentially very dangerous in a military sense.
So, the difference between the Armed Services' version of an export control regime and that that is preferred by other more commerce-minded committees, is we require Department of Defense (DOD) to have scrutiny. So, I guess my question to you is, do you think that that DOD scrutiny will help to discover dual uses for certain technologies where they may not be altogether apparent to other agencies?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. I think that the committee's changes in the bill as it came through were excellent. I think you also have to say to yourself, ''Well, is this really a military question, is this a security question, or is it simply a trade question?'' If you agree that it is at least as much of a security question as it is a trade question, then I think you have to conclude that you need a security point of view in the decision process; and that means the Secretary of Defense.
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Mr. HUNTER. Dr. Hamza, do you have any comment on that?
Dr. HAMZA. It is always in the end the intelligence that will tell you what possible dual-use item will be used by a certain country. Because, for example, for a country like Iraq, many more dual-use items should be restricted than, say, a country like, right now, Egypt. Because, in the end the intelligence angle, that should take care of what is possible and what is the intent right now in that place and how would they use it.
Sobut, for example, I give one case. Pakistan came to us with an offer to do the waste disposal system for our petrochemicals very cheaply; and we agreed. They took the contract, went to England and bought maraging steel tubes for use in the centrifuge program based on the Iraqi contract. Now, this is dual-use item, which was bought under false pretenses, which is Iraq. They never sent it to Iraq. They took the first batch to Pakistan. The second batch was good.
So, you have this systemin the end, it is a Pakistani company. The British know that Pakistan is doing centrifuge program. Now, they either should have made sure that this goes to Iraq or should not have accepted the Pakistani pretext of using it.
In the end, intelligence is what decides what you are going to do with this.
Mr. HUNTER. Mr. Milhollinincidentally, Dr. Snyder, if you have any questions, you just jump right in. We are going to goI have been monologuing here for quite a while and hogging the time. So, go ahead, Dr. Snyder. Take all the time you need.
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Mr. SNYDER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I appreciate your lengthy time you put in these hearings the last couple days.
Actually, it is better now that I am talking. Because, before the votes we had a Marine Corps gunnery sergeant sitting in the audience, and they are the closest thing to God I have personally encountered, and I am more relaxed now that he is not here.
I want to ask a question. I had a comment I would like to make about the hearing schedule. My comment, Dr. Hamza, is I was really appreciative of you bringing up the point about the families and the personnel. It reminds me, you know, if you destroy General Rommel's tank but General Rommel isn't in it, you haven't really helped yourself much at all.
This issue came up yesterday with Secretary Rumsfeld because, very correctly so, he says, our goal should be disarmament. And, my question is, I made the comment that, even so, if we completely disarm them but the scientific base of knowledge is still there, we still have a problem.
Dr. Kay, when he was here a week or two ago, said that he wished he had had the ability to issue green cards. And, my question of him was, ''Well, I wonder why we didn't give him that issue, the ability to take a willing scientist and family members out of the country permanently if they choose not only to get more reliable information but that would be one less scientist to work in the program.'' So, I appreciate you saying something about it.
Mr. Milhollin, today's PostI don't know if you saw this article. It has got pictures of what is referred to as aluminum parts, but the headline is ''Evidence on Iraq challenged. Experts question if tubes were meant for weapons program''.
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The only question I want to askthe last line says, according to their source here, ''Government experts on nuclear technology who dissented from the Bush administration's view told him they were expected to remain silent.''
Now, as a scientist and coming out of an academic environmentI am a family doctor, generallyif somebody reports information to me, I expect to hear if there is dissenting views. How do you respond to that generalI am not asking about these aluminum tubes, but
Dr. MILHOLLIN. I think that
Mr. SNYDER. Does it concern you, if this is accurate, that experts in the area of nuclear technology, according to this press report, were advised to remain silent? When they say ''remain silent'', that means don't tell Members of Congress that you disagree with the majority view. Does that concern you if government is giving that kind of order to our nuclear experts?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. I think certainly I have always recommended a transparency in all cases, and particularly with respect to export controls. I think our whole export control process should be transparent, and I should be able to find out what the Commerce Department is approving. The rest of the world doesn't agree with me.
But, with respect to shutting people up, I mean, I am not an expert in that, but I don't see why the committee couldn't require that more than one view be given to it. It seems to me only fair that, by the nature of these cases, you are looking at only a certain amount of evidence and you are being required to draw an inference from that evidence. So, I think it is perfectly appropriate for the committee to want to know more about the evidence and want to know more about the analytical process so you can make up your own mind who is more credible.
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Mr. SNYDER. Seems like we should not have to read that there are dissenting views in the newspaper.
Mr. Chair, if I might, I want to make a comment about the committee hearings. I appreciate you scheduling these hearings. I appreciate you stepping forward in the absence of Chairman Stump in his difficulty with his illness. But, I don't remember if it was you or Mr. Skelton who referred to the aggressive schedule of briefings. In my view, we have not had an aggressive schedule of briefings. I mean, for several weeks prior to the August recess, you know, I was watching what happened on the Senate side because they were having briefings on this or reading press reports about it.
We now are in, apparently, on about a two-day workweek here where we go home or are going home at 3:00 today, and I am going to stay around because Mr. Spratt is holdinghas arranged an informal briefing tomorrow on Iraq, but then we are coming back Tuesday night for votes. We are now down to the last two or three weeks of the session. I think it is going to be very difficult to have, ''An aggressive schedule of briefings.''
I have great respect for these two men, and the topic of export controls is a very important one. But, that is not the question that is on Members' minds right now. I had dinner with about ten Members last night. I ran into people. What I hear people say in meetings this morning, they are saying ''We need more information.'' My questions aren't being answered.
You know, this morning at the hearing when we were at our maximum we had less than a third of the members here. The majority of subcommittee chairs and ranking members were not here.
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It is not because this topic isn't important. It is an important topic, and I appreciate both of your work in it, but it is not the question that is on people's minds. We have a resolution apparently coming from the White House today that very likely will lead to men and women in uniform going into harm's way. That is the issue that is on people's minds, and I would hope that we will have an aggressive schedule of briefings.
I know that I am told we have Richard Perle and Ms. Matthews scheduled for next week. I would like to see us have both open and closed briefings with some of the former high-ranking military officials that are publicly saying things.
Wes Clark has written in the op-eds in the London Times and made multiple speeches. General Zinni has had some very prominent comments. General Scowcroftthese are people who are patriots who are asking questions about the topic. I think it could be helpful to have people of their caliber who have differing views both in the closed session, but also in open session, so that the American people might hear these former officers and their exchange with the Armed Services Committee; and, frankly, I think we are running out of time. But
Mr. HUNTER. Let meI thank my friend. Let me just comment.
First, if you wanted to hear the dissenting view, it has been on the tubes, it has been presented. The fact that there is one very candidly to the committeeand I will be happy to talk to you in a classified setting about that, those dissenting views.
Mr. SNYDER. You are talking about the aluminum tubes.
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Mr. HUNTER. Also, what the Post has said, that people were told to shut up, either wasn't carried out because they didn't or it is not true. I would be the last person to saymalign the Washington Post, but I think you used the wordyou said they were expected to not voice their opinions, and you paraphrased that as ''they were advised''.
Mr. SNYDER. The line from the news I just read, the press report, told they were expected
Mr. HUNTER. Well, expected doesn't say somebody told them not to say anything. Does that mean that they receivedthey didn't get the invitation to the golf game of the week or somebody didn't invite them to lunch or does it mean somebody actually said ''Don't say your opposing view.''
But, if you want to be informed on the opposing view, the fact that opposing views existed that were briefed to this committee, talk to me a little later.
Second, we have hadwe are doing these hearings as often as we possibly can. We were the first committee to have the Secretary. We have now had two classified briefings. We are going to have another one. In fact, our goal is to have every single member of the House
Incidently, every single member of the House was invited to the last classified briefing, not just the committee. Eighty-three members appeared. Our goal is to see to it that every single member of the House has multiple opportunities to come and get a classified briefing.
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Now, with respect to all the personalities that are out there who have views, we want to get as many of them in as possible. We have been working to get General Clark. That was recommended by the minority side, by Mr. Skelton and by Mr. Spratt, that we get General Clark in; and I think that is an excellent recommendation. We are trying to get him.
Sobut, last, to go to the relevance of this testimony, this testimony may be more important in my mind than the classified testimony we have heard or even the testimony of the Secretary yesterday, because the real question of what we do is largely juxtaposed against the issue of the effectiveness of inspections. Do inspections work? And, that was obvious from Mr. Spratt'sthe thrust of Mr. Spratt's questions. How intense would the inspections have to be? What kind of duration? How could you make them work? Because inspections, obviously, are an alternative to military action.
So, Dr. Hamzathe insight of Dr. Hamza as a person who was helping to lead the nuclear weapon program of Iraq and his description of how he and his colleagues successfully evaded and avoided detection and how they continued the nuclear weapons program even while our inspections were going on and while Mr. Spratt was holding up these trophies of what they foundagain, I was reminded of what we see in the San Diego papers all the time, which is the trophies of the big cocaine busts that are made on the border, and then we get inside information that shows us that, actually, for every pound that was busted and held up for the news conference there were ten pounds that went through. His explanation of how these inspections were successfully derailed, I think, goes to the heart of whether we accept inspections as a viable alternative to military action.
Page 67 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC So, I mean, I think we all have a candid and a straightforward and a sincere interest in whether or not these things work. So, his testimony has been right on point. I wish every Member of the House could hear it.
I would be happy to yield to my friend.
Mr. SNYDER. I think as I talk to members, Mr. Chairmanand I don't want to belabor thisbut in terms of the topics chosen, a lot of the testimony here today, the discussion was on the export controls, which I don't think is on people's mind. I think there are other questions out there. You are absolutely correct. Do inspections work or not, and how could they work, and will we achieve the goal of disarmament?
We had Dr. Kay and his colleague here a couple weeks ago. But, I think more common questions I am hearing from members are issues about if there was military action what would it look like, what would be the ramifications on the war on terrorism, what would be the potential cost in American lives and lives of allies, those kinds of questions that we have not addressed yet.
The other point I would make is while I, you know, watch the Senate hearings and I can read op eds, to this point we have not had anyone before this committee, I don't think, that has expressed some of the concerns as expressed by General Zinni and General Clark. I know you are doing the best you can with these very abbreviated week schedules, but I think questions can be more fully aired if we have people who have differing views.
I appreciate you. I don't mean to belabor it.
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Mr. HUNTER. Understand, my friend, I am going to try to get General Clark to be here. If you would like to have General Zinni, maybe we can get them both at the same time. I like to hear different points of view. I think it is necessary for this debate.
There have been discussions in closed session aboutthat go to potential military operations, but I think that it was pretty wise of the secretary not to talk about proposed military operations in open session.
At any rate, we really appreciate these two gentlemen being with us. I noticed our distinguished ranking member is here, Mr. Skelton. You have as much time as you wish, sir.
Mr. SKELTON. Just a commenttwo things.
Number one, in some instances it has been difficult to get a minority person to come in on the short notice that we have had. Number two, we have inquiries in today to far more than those you named to see if they will testify, and some of them have indicated willingness to do so in closed hearing.
I think in some cases it would be excellent for the American people to hear them. But, we will do our best and continue to do our best. I am not sure if the gentleman knows of the extensive efforts we have made. But, as Harry Truman says, we have done our damnedest so far to get them; and we hope we can fulfill your expectations with people thinking on all sorts of sides of this very, very important and complex issue.
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Mr. SNYDER. Thank you.
Mr. HUNTER. And, Mr. Skelton, did you have any other questions that you wanted to ask the witnesses?
Mr. SKELTON. The only other questionI think that Dr. Hamza did answer it, but assume, Doctor, that the Saddam Hussein regime is removed. What do we do with the various scientists and engineers the day after?
Dr. HAMZA. That is a very good question, sir. Actually, Saddam already found an outlet for them. As a cover, he had to let them in to do some civilian work. So that when the inspector comes after them, they say, ''We are not working on a weapons program. We are doing oil exploration or we are doingbuilding a refinery or we are building a power station.''
They built Iraq's power station, not the generators themselves, but the control rooms and such. They built telephone exchanges. Now, if you call Iraq in two rings, you get anybody you want in Iraq. Of course, this is to get Iraq ready, the communications system, in case of war so an order can go fast between towns and to the required personnel.
You have a very professional and very proven groups now which can be really used to rebuild Iraq. They already rebuilt Iraq after the Gulf War. We had no communications system, no telephones, no power, no gas; and they got all that back in line. Get them back to do that. They could
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The Iraq system is really right now run down. Iraq need huge effort to rebuild and reconstruct, and these people can do that. So, I think these scientists and engineers are already, because of the cover required for their work, are already in the civilian sector. They just can be made to do that full time instead of part time just for show and just to cover themselves against inspectors or against whoever comes looking for them.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you, Mr. Skelton.
Mr. Milhollin, is there any otherhaving lookedyou have looked at the Export Administration Act, the proposal that was put forth by the House Armed Services Committee and also by the International Relationsdid you look at the International Relations Committee's product?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. Yes, I did, but that has been some time ago.
Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Are there anyis there any advice that you would like to give us on those pieces of legislation?
I mean, we are moving into thisit is interesting we are moving into this at a time when we are contemplating the passage of an Export Administration Act. At the same time, we are poised to have to spend a lot of American resources and risk American lives, perhaps, to eliminate the product of Western technology, some of it American technology, that passed under a previous regime. So my question is, having learned this difficult lesson, is there any advice that you would recommend with respect to this act? It can be general or specific.
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Dr. MILHOLLIN. Well, first, general. I think my questionmy answer earlier was that this really is historically obsolete, the law we are looking at. It was framedit was negotiated, framed, debated, drafted before September 11th. We need to go back and start over. It doesn't fit the new period of history we are living in.
I think that if people of good faith and goodwill put their heads together in the next session of Congress, we can come up with an export control law that would be specifically designed to combat terrorism and that a majority of Congress could support.
Second specific comment would be that the legislation got stronger as it progressed through Congress, and the strongest version, the version that most adapted to protect our national security, is the version that finally came out of this committee. So, if Congress is going to pass anything, it should pass the version of the bill this committee put together.
The nextthe most desirable outcome would be to pass nothing. The second would be to pass the version of the bill that this committee put out. The third would be to pass the version of the bill that the House International Relations Committee put out. And, I think, the unacceptable alternative would be to pass the Senate bill as it was enacted.
So, that is my advice.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you very much.
We are joined by Congressman Simmons who isI consider him to be a national asset because he has a member of the committee who has a great background in intelligence, and I know he is got some questions. So, Mr. Simmons, you are recognized.
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Mr. SIMMONS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman; and I apologize for being detained.
Listening to the testimony this morning and then reading the testimony reminded me of Casey Stengel's comment, ''Deja vu all over again''.
I had the opportunity to serve my country abroad about 30 years ago in a location in the Far East where a weaponization program appeared to be taking place. I was assigned to the embassy there, and one of my duties was to be the Export Transactions Officer, to review exports from the standpoint of whether they contributed to nuclear proliferation.
During my three-year tour there, I encountered many of the things that have been raised here today with regard to Iraq. I encountered that one of the greatest suppliers of technology and resources was the United States of America. I also encountered that European countriesthe Netherlands, France, Germany and otherswere also suppliers; and that while we were trying to implement a nuclear proliferation or nonproliferation pre-regime, our own country and our allies were contributing to the problem that we faced. When inspectors came into the country to look for evidence of the program and the weaponization, they would end up going to sanitized sites.
I think the doctor very pointedly testified that when these activities occur in a country, they will do everything in their power to keep them from the eyes of a curious world.
Page 73 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC In my experience, very strong diplomatic pressures were brought to bear which effectively curtailed this program, at least at the time I was involved; and the difference then and now is that we have a country where perhaps diplomatic pressures from the United States alone are not enough. So, my question to you is, are there diplomatic or export opportunities that we can exploit, either ourselves or through the United Nations, through the IAEA or other organizations, that we can take advantage of now over the short-term that would be steps short of surgical strikes or in fact introducing forces into the country? Are there opportunities like that that we should be focusing on?
Dr. MILHOLLIN. My impression is that we are doing our best already, given the intelligence that we are receiving. That is, we have, as you know, an ongoing program of trying to detect shipments, intervene, convince the manufacturer, the middleman, the shippers not to go through with it. I think the public in general doesn't recognize how important good intelligence is. Without good intelligence this process doesn't work, and we also can't even estimate what effect these imports are having in Iraq.
One of our big problems now is that the administration is putting out lists of things, which are sourced to the open media. We would expect more than that for the amount of money we are spending for intelligence. So, these opportunities are going to continue to come up.
I would say that the battleground is shifting to some extent from Western Europe, which was the big problem before the Gulf War, now to Eastern Europe. The newly free countries, former members of the east bloc, are the targets for Iraq's procurement activities, at least in the missile domain.
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I, myself, know of several instances in which Iraq tried to buy missile parts that are prohibited to it by U.N. resolutions during the 1990s after the prohibition came into effect. I am not aware that these were picked up by our intelligence agencies. The U.N. inspectors found them because they were going through indictments in Iraq.
I would also say that I think we, the United States, should not be reluctant to embarrass suppliers in the media who break the rules. One of our problems in Iraq before the war was that Germany was exporting a tremendous amount of technology and we were reluctant to embarrass the Germans in public. I think if we had decided to embarrass them sooner, Iraq would have received much less.
Mr. SIMMONS. I thank you for that response.
I guess my opinion on that subject is very clear: I would far prefer to embarrass a country engaged in activities that are adverse not only to us but to the peace and stability of the region than to have American sons and daughters die in a conflict where the weapons in many respects aimed against them have been purchased from our allies and from companies within our own United States of America. I mean, ultimately, as Americans, we commit our most precious resource to the defense of our Nation, and it is not money, and it is not technology. It is our sons and daughters.
Dr. MILHOLLIN. I have spoken to companies about this over the years. What they fear most is being linked to the spilling of American blood in the media. They don't really fear our government or our government's investigators, our government as prosecutors as much as they fear public exposure. So, I think that is one of the great weapons we have that we should be willing to use more often.
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Mr. SIMMONS. I thank you for those responses.
I would also like to publicly thank Dr. Hamza for the courage that he has shown in speaking out on these issues. I know from my own experience that that kind of courage can be risky, dangerous, in fact. I am sure that grows out of a deep conviction in his own heart and in his own mind, and I thank him for those convictions and for that courage.
This is not an easy business. The stakes are high and sometimes sovereign nations look adversely at people who speak out on these issues. So, I thank him for his courage.
I thank the chairman for having this hearing. I look forward to joining with the chairman on all of his recommendations so that we can begin the process of stopping some of the transactions that are taking place and we can begin to address this very critical aspect of this problem for which a military response is not necessary. A diplomatic response and maybe even a public media response could be very helpful.
Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman; and I think an excellent point pursuant to your testimony that came out was that this is an era, it is a new era. It is an era of terrorists with high technology, and we need to have a regime in placean export control regime that addresses that challenge. And, right now, we have an antiquated regime that doesn't address the challenge and, basically, as a substitute, simply opens the floodgate for technology to spill out. So I look forward to working with the gentleman from Connecticut.
Again, I think we all regard you as a real national asset here because you are one of the few guys who has an intelligence background, and on this committee I think that is a very important asset. I thank you.
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I want to thank the ranking member, too, Mr. Skelton, for his hard work.
We are going to move forward and try to have more hearings on this very important issue as the weeks go by. We are going to run them back to back as often as we can, and our goal is to try to see to it that every single member of the House has at least one classified briefing on this and has several opportunities to come to hearings at different times. Because everyone has a difficult schedule.
But also, Mr. Milhollin and Dr. Hamza, thank you for your testimony today. I think we need to address this need for a new technology control regime soon, and I hope the administration understands that, that this is a new era, and, hopefully, we can work together.
So, don't run out of here when we get finished with you here today, Mr. Milhollin. We need some more advice from you. We would like to talk to you a little bit more about your thoughts on where we go in the near future here.
And, Dr. Hamza, thank you so much for giving us an insight which is invaluable. There is nothing like having somebody who was inside the program telling us what was happening. I think especially on the issue of inspections, you have been veryyour testimony very much complements that, the U.N. inspectors who appeared here a couple of days ago and also some of the information we received in our classified briefing. Thank you.
Thanks to everyone and thanks to our great staff for helping to put this hearing on.
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With that theoh, I have to ask, also, unanimous consent that Senator Kyl's statement be included in the record. So without objection we will include that statement in the records, also. He has some very cogent remarks on this issue. We appreciate that.
[The prepared statement of Senator Kyl can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. HUNTER. So, thank you, and the hearing is adjourned.
[Whereupon, at 12:45 p.m., the committee was adjourned.]