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Libyan Nuke Program Was CIA-MI6 Sting Op
All files regarding this affair have been destroyed at the demand of the US government
Ludwig De Braeckeleer (ludwig)     Print Article 
Published 2008-09-07 03:42 (KST)   
"We were very happy the files were destroyed."
--Senior intelligence official in Washington, D.C.

In May 2006, I suggested that the Libyan nuclear program might have been a CIA-MI6 sting operation designed to bring down the A. Q. Khan nuclear mafia (1). The program also intended to convince countries such as North Korea and Iran that it was in their best interest to give up their nuclear ambition.

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Among other things, I suggested that members of the Tinner family, who supervised the production of uranium centrifuge parts in Malaysia, were in fact CIA assets.

On Aug. 24, 2008, The New York Times revealed that that the suspicion was indeed well founded (2). Swiss authorities have admitted that all files regarding this affair have been destroyed at the demand of the US government.

"The United States had urged that the files be destroyed, according to interviews with five current and former Bush administration officials. The purpose, the officials said, was less to thwart terrorists than to hide evidence of a clandestine relationship between the Tinners and the C.I.A.," The New York Times revealed.

"Over four years, several of these officials said, operatives of the C.I.A. paid the Tinners as much as $10 million, some of it delivered in a suitcase stuffed with cash."

Today, the Web site of the Libyan news agency Mathaba.net has published an amazing story regarding their alleged "nuclear weapons" program:

"[US Secretary of State Condoleezza] Rice began a four-nation tour of North Africa in Tripoli, Libya on Friday, meeting with Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi and other top officials in what the State Department is calling a landmark trip that will symbolize the opening of a new era in ties between the United States and the oil-rich country of Libya.

"Libya succeeded in obtaining good relations with the USA by making several concessions which included billions of dollars in payments to the USA. It also involved Libya creating a fictitious "nuclear weapons" program, so that some odd looking parts and charts, could be handed over to the USA so as to show that any nation that "give up" its weapons can become a friend of the USA.

"Needless to say, no program ever existed, and the hiring of Pakistanis and others by Libya was merely designed to give some credence to the plan."

The CIA has attempted to hide its involvement with the nuclear mafia previously. Ruud Lubbers, a former Dutch prime minister, revealed in August 2006 that the Netherlands was prepared to arrest A. Q. Khan 30 years ago. Dutch authorities came close to arresting Khan twice, first in 1975 and later in 1986, but the CIA requested that they let him act freely.

The State Department has always declined to elaborate about Lubber's remarks. "It is not something that I feel we really have anything to say about because it deals with events long in the past. It deals with intelligence matters and for those reasons, I don't have anything to say about it," US State Department deputy spokesman Adam Ereli stated (3).

The Amsterdam court, which sentenced Khan to four years in prison in 1983, has lost Khan's legal files. The court's vice president, Judge Anita Leeser, suspects the CIA had a hand in the disappearance of the documents.

"Something is not right, we just don't lose things like that," Leeser told Dutch news show "Nova." "I find it bewildering that people lose files with a political goal, especially if it is on request of the CIA. It is unheard of."

Early in March 2006, the trial of Gotthard Lerch began in Mannheim, Germany. Lerch was accused of supervising the production of centrifuge parts in South Africa.

"Indeed, the entire case is beginning to bear the telltale signs of the CIA and MI6, a windfall for Lerch's defense attorneys, who argue that the entire deal was concocted by the intelligence agencies. Their client, they say, is a victim, not a perpetrator, and he expressly contests the violations of the War Weapons Control Act and the Foreign Trade Act of which he has been accused," wrote Der Spiegel reporters.

They were not wrong. On July 27, 2006, The Guardian of London announced the collapse of the Lerch trial (4):

"The international effort to get to grips with the world's worst nuclear proliferation racket suffered a serious setback yesterday when the first criminal trial of an alleged top figure collapsed.

"A judge in the south-west German town of Mannheim threw out the prosecution case against Gotthard Lerch, a German engineer, four months into his trial on charges of helping Libya clandestinely build a nuclear bomb. Judge Peter Seidling said there was a danger of Mr Lerch not receiving a fair trial as the prosecution had withheld evidence."

By 2006, it had become absolutely obvious that American and British intelligence agencies were somehow involved in the Libyan nuclear program.

"It is becoming increasingly clear that the CIA and Britain's MI6 infiltrated the Khan network and that they probably even recruited some of the main suspects. How else, for example, could one explain the fact that vacuum pumps manufactured by Germany's Pfeiffer Vacuum, ended up in both Libya and Iran? The company, after all, never sent any vacuum pumps to Libya or Iran -- but did send some to the US nuclear weapons research facility in Los Alamos, New Mexico," Der Spiegel reported (5).

The destruction of the files is a tragedy for the nuclear inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency as it will be from now on impossible to determine with certainty what type of information A. Q. Khan has provided to his customers. It also has direct bearing on the case against the Tinners.

"The Swiss judge in charge of the Tinner case, Andreas Muller, is not terribly happy either. He said he had no warning of the planned destruction and is now trying to determine what, if anything, remains of the case against Friedrich Tinner and his sons, Urs and Marco," The New York Times wrote.

The Libyan news agency made a second extraordinary revelation. The article claims that the transparent miscarriage of justice in the case of the only person convicted of the bombing of Pan Am 103 was the result of a deal between Washington, London and Tripoli.

"The concessions included allowing the USA and Britain to lay the blame on Libya for the downing of Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie which killed hundreds of people. To this day the real perpetrators of this crime have not been sought, with an innocent Libyan languishing in a Scottish jail," Mathaba.net wrote.

Although Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi had been granted a second extraordinary appeal last year, his defense lawyers are denied the right to access secret documents provided by an unknown third country and believed to be highly relevant to the case.

In the wake of Secretary of State Rice's visit to Libya, the name of Megrahi was removed from the State Department's Rewards for Justice Web site. No explanation has so far been provided. As a former CIA operative in the Middle East told me, this is rather strange
1. "The Sixth Container." Judith Miller is back, writing about nuclear success.

"Covert Nukes Program a MI6/CIA Sting Op?"

2. "In Nuclear Net's Undoing, a Web of Shadowy Deals."

3. "CIA Resisted Arrest of Nuke Tech Broker Khan."

4. "First trial over Libya's nuclear bomb plan collapses."

5. "Network of Death on Trial."


Ludwig De Braeckeleer has a Ph.D. in nuclear sciences. Ludwig teaches physics and international humanitarian law. He blogs on "The GaiaPost."
©2008 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Ludwig De Braeckeleer

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