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Mon 18 Mar 2013 12:04 PM

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UK, US knew Iraq had no WMDs before invasion

BBC's Panorama reveals fresh evidence that MI6 and CIA dismissed intelligence from Iraq's foreign minister Naji Sabri

UK, US knew Iraq had no WMDs before invasion
Britain and the US knew well before the 2003 US led invasion of Iraq that toppled Saddam Husseins regime that the Iraqi leader had no weapons of mass destruction (WMD), the BBCs Panorama has reported

Britain and the US knew well before the 2003 US led invasion of Iraq that toppled Saddam Hussein's regime that the Iraqi leader had no weapons of mass destruction (WMD), the BBC's Panorama has reported.

"Much of the key intelligence used by Downing Street and the White House was based on fabrication, wishful thinking and lies," the BBC said.

Iraq's foreign minister Naji Sabri was in touch with Bill Murray, CIA station chief in Paris via an Arab journalist, the news organization said. The two men met in New York in September 2002.

Saddam Hussein "had some chemical weapons left over from the early 90s, [and] had taken the stocks and given them to various tribes that were loyal to him. [He] had intentions to have weapons of mass destruction - chemical, biological and nuclear - but at that point in time he virtually had nothing," the BBC reports Murray as saying.

A senior officer of Britain's MI6 also met with Iraq's head of intelligence, Tahir Jalil Habbush Al-Tikriti in Jordan two months before the war and also said the Iraqi leader had no active WMDs, the BBC reported.

"I thought we'd produced probably the best intelligence that anybody produced in the pre-war period, all of which came out - in the long run - to be accurate. The information was discarded and not used," the BBC cites Murray as saying.

The lies of two Iraqi spies served as the basis for the argument that the Iraqi regime had an active WMD programme.

Rafid Ahmed Alwan al-Janabi, also known by his codename Curveball, who arrived in germany seeking asylum, gave fabricated information that served as a core part of the intelligence that was used to justify the war against Iraq, the BBC reported. Janabi said he had seen mobile biological laboratories, the authenticity of which German intelligence doubted. The other spy Iraqi former intelligence officer, called Maj Muhammad Harith met with the Americans and said he came up with the idea of mobile biological labs.  

The Panorama documentary: The Spies Who Fooled the World, will air on BBC One, March 18 at 22:35 GMT and will be available in the UK on BBC iPlayer.

Wildwine 6 years ago

Is this New(s)??
They did know there was no WMD; in fact I don't think WMD was even part of the actual agenda.
Then again US does whatever it wants and the world can only watch!!!

Arjun 6 years ago

Trying to tell the world now !!!! You should have asked a simpleton on the streets of Baghdad & you would've got your answer. The most prosperous country in the medieval times been destroyed for some personal gain & pleasure, today it lies in ruins because of you. Funny part is movies like "The Hurt Locker" shows American marines getting killed or living the life in the desert trying to make peace and the world feels sorry for them. HA !!!! Actually they have made Iraq into "pieces".

ANA 6 years ago

But what about the thousands of lives lost due to the war with no basis. Who can compensate for that!.

Tony Blair & George Bush both should stand trial for their war on Iraq. As heads of two super powers they had the responsibility to explore all possible evidence. Since evidence was ignored they should be charged with pre-meditated mass murder and sentenced accordingly.

Sam 6 years ago

I agree they should be tried and sent to Baghdad to be hanged. However, one correction: the UK is NOT a "superpower" and the US is a Hyper power...its actions are unbecoming of any leadership qualities today. Sad. Closest you have to a super power today is China, although they blush at that people.

Calvin 6 years ago

Tell me something i don't know already.

procan 6 years ago

Send USA 5th fleet packing, pull out USA missile systems.If GCC Royal Families and there people feel this way the can act on there beliefs . China is a kind thoughtful Nation I am sure they would protect the GCC . Iranians are your brothers they would love to cover your backs. The beautiful Russians a wait the GCC with open arms. India has always try to endear it self to the GCC. So many options for your people yet you continue to sleep with the Great Satan USof A. Make choice people.

Sad witness of human hypocrasy 6 years ago

And they blamed and insulted France for not accepting to be part of this mass murder? is ICC only for africans and arabs? When will families of killed soldiers and iraki innocent people be able to get those war criminals on trial?....... maybe never. They are still out there, travelling and getting big bugs for their lies. what a shame. And after they lecture people and nations about honesty, integrity, moral and democracy?

Liam 6 years ago

How soon you forget...........

Grant Holt 6 years ago

I think it would restore a lot of faith in the different world powers, by showing all are held accountible for all their actions.

Can't see it happening myself, but it would be great moment if it did.

jingle bells 6 years ago

Totally agree with you Ana, but which country will come forward and file the case and push UN to bring both of them to World court.?