This is the first time I've ever used the word "BREAKING" in one of these diaries.
By Andrew Gumbel in Los Angeles
Published: 02 March 2007
The United States appears to have made a major intelligence blunder over North Korea's nuclear weapons programme, one that may have exacerbated tensions with Pyongyang over the past four years and goaded Kim Jong-Il into pressing ahead with last October's live nuclear test, intelligence and Bush administration officials have said.
The blunder does not concern the plutonium-based bomb technology that North Korea used in its test and has clearly been developing for decades. Rather it concerns the assessment, in a Central Intelligence Agency report to Congress in November 2002, that North Korea was also pursuing a parallel uranium enrichment programme capable of providing the raw material for two or more nuclear weapons a year, starting "mid-decade".
That prompted the US to cut off oil supplies to Pyongyang, to which North Korea responded by throwing out international weapons inspectors and ratcheting up its plutonium bomb programme.
Please keep in mind that the CIA is part of the Executive Branch of our government. Under the jurisdiction of the President.
Why should these bozos stay in power for one more day?
We'll be very lucky if they don't get us all killed.
UPDATE: The Washington Post has the gall to cover for the Bush administration. Check out this vomit-inducing editorial headline, and look at how the headline is completely different than the first paragraph of what is actually said.:
Another Intelligence Twist
The CIA may have overstated North Korea's uranium program. But Pyongyang still must answer for it.
ONCE AGAIN the Bush administration is being accused of exaggerating intelligence to justify an aggressive policy toward a rogue regime, with disastrous results. In October 2002 the State Department announced that North Korea had acknowledged secretly developing a uranium enrichment program. The next month the CIA reported to Congress that it had "recently learned that the North is constructing a plant that could produce enough weapons-grade uranium for two or more nuclear weapons per year when fully operational -- which could be as soon as mid-decade." On this basis the administration suspended a deal under which North Korea received fuel oil in exchange for freezing a separate program to produce plutonium. Pyongyang responded by restarting that program and producing enough plutonium for a number of nuclear weapons, one of which it tested last October.
The CIA may have "overstated", and Pyongyang still "must answer for it." ....... Yet what really happened was "disastrous".
Thanks, WaPo, for the propagandistic headline. Sheeeeesh ..... If you just skimmed the headlines you'd have NO IDEA.
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