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Secret source of phony Iraq intel outed

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  • Greg Cannon
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071102/ap_on_go_ot/us_iraq_curveball;_ylt=Ail.dkyLK593nHtN0kL6awkb.3QA Secret source of phony Iraq intel outed Fri Nov 2, 11:23 AM
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 3, 2007
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      http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071102/ap_on_go_ot/us_iraq_curveball;_ylt=Ail.dkyLK593nHtN0kL6awkb.3QA

      Secret source of phony Iraq intel outed

      Fri Nov 2, 11:23 AM ET

      WASHINGTON - The Iraqi defector code-named
      "Curveball," whose false tales of biological weapons
      labs bolstered the U.S. case for war, wasn't the
      prominent chemical engineer he claimed to be and
      invented stories to help his case for asylum in
      Germany, a new report says.

      "Curveball" is Rafid Ahmed Alwan, who did study
      chemical engineering but made poor grades and never
      managed a biological weapons facility, according to
      CBS' "60 Minutes," which will broadcast on Sunday a
      report describing how Alwan became a secret
      intelligence source.

      Although known publicly only by his code name,
      Curveball has been repeatedly discredited by
      investigations of the United States' faulty prewar
      intelligence and became an embarrassment to U.S. spy
      agencies. A presidential intelligence commission found
      that Curveball, who mostly told his stories to German
      intelligence officials who passed them on to the U.S.,
      was a fabricator and an alcoholic.

      "60 Minutes" reports that Alwan arrived at a German
      refugee center in 1999 and began spinning his tales of
      a facility making mobile biological weapons in an
      effort to gain asylum. The ploy apparently achieved
      his goal, and Alwan is assumed to be living in Germany
      today under an assumed name.

      Although German intelligence officials warned the CIA
      that Curveball's claims of mobile bioweapons labs were
      unreliable, and U.N. inspectors determined before the
      war began in 2003 that parts of his story were false,
      the Bush administration continued to promote the
      existence of such mobile labs for months after the
      invasion, until it was widely accepted that they could
      not be found.
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