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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iraq Survey Group Final Report

 

Hidden Enrichment Technology

Since Operation Iraqi Freedom, two scientists from Iraq’s pre-1991 nuclear weapons program have emerged to provide ISG with uranium enrichment technology and components, which they kept hidden from inspectors. In August 2003, a former EMIS scientist told ISG during an interview that he had taken material and equipment that was related to EMIS and hid them in various places near his home in the 1990s. The scientist had not been specifically told to do this but believed his supervisors were cognizant of his actions. He chose items to hide that could be used in future reconstitution of the EMIS program. The scientist turned over to the Coalition a broad range of items that had been withheld from the UN inspectors, including technical reports on EMIS, a collection of foreign EMIS-related patents, a mass spectrometer, blocks of high-purity graphite, high-purity tantalum shielding sheets, and an indigenously designed collector piece from inside the EMIS machine.Some of these items are shown in Figure 34.

The former head of Iraq’s pre-1991 centrifuge program also retained prohibited documents and components in apparent violation of the Regime’s directives. Though this activity was isolated, it also had the potential to contribute to a possible restart of Iraq’s uranium enrichment programs.

  • In mid-2003, Dr. Mahdi Shakar Ghali Al ‘Ubaydi provided Coalition forces with centrifuge components and a complete set of workable centrifuge blueprints, which he, reportedly, had hidden at his home for the purpose of reconstituting the centrifuge enrichment program after sanctions were lifted.
  • Al ‘Ubaydi reportedly hid these items in 1991, a move approved later that year by Husayn Kamil—Saddam’s son-in-law and former head of Iraq’s WMD programs. Qusay reportedly confirmed the order in 1992, but al ‘Al ‘Ubaydi had not been contacted since. ISG is not able to show that the Iraqi Government continued to be aware of Al ‘Ubaydi’s concealment activities or otherwise planned to use them as part of a plan to reconstitute the centrifuge program.
  • According to a former PC-3 nuclear design scientist, he was surprised when he learned that Al ‘Ubaydi had retained centrifuge program documents in his home. The scientist was very skeptical that orders were given to retain the documents and material associated with the former centrifuge program.
  • Former Presidential Scientific Advisor Amir Hamudi Hasan al-Sadi stated that any Iraqi scientists that kept nuclear related material at their homes were acting on their own.

 

 



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