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Russian President Vladimir Putin told reporters this morning that Russia had learned of terrorist attacks planned by Saddam Hussein and had passed the warnings on to the Bush administration following 9/11:
Russia warned the United States on several occasions that Iraq's Saddam Hussein planned "terrorist attacks" on its soil, President Vladimir Putin said Friday.
"After the events of September 11, 2001, and before the start of the military operation in Iraq, Russian special services several times received such information and passed it on to their American colleagues," he told reporters.
The Kremlin leader, who was speaking in the Kazakh capital, said Russian intelligence services had many times received information that Saddam's special forces were preparing terrorist attacks in the United States "and beyond its borders on American military and civilian targets."
"This information was conveyed to our American colleagues," he said. He added that Russian intelligence had no proof that Saddam agents had been involved in any particular attack.
Russia had diplomatic relations with Saddam's Iraq and opposed the U.S.-led military offensive that toppled him.
Well, this puts a different shine on the 9/11 Commission's report, doesn't it? Putin bitterly opposed the Anglo-American effort to unseat Saddam Hussein, so Putin has no particular axe to grind on this issue. In fact, one would expect that any report that damages Bush's credibility on this issue logically bolsters his own. It appears from this AP report that not only did Putin make this announcement, it sounds as though he called the press conference to specifically deliver this news. Note also that Russia maintained diplomatic relations with Hussein, almost until the moment the bombs began to fall in Baghdad in March 2003.
Perhaps this comprises part of the "sensitive" reporting that the Bush administration had on its desk in the fall of 2002, when it had to decide from where the next attacks on American soil might come. Since Hussein had managed to get around the arms embargo, thanks to UN Security Council members such as Syria and to an extent France and Germany, and since the UN oil-for-food program had given Saddam billions of dollars in resources within easy reach, it isn't hard to conclude that Saddam had been a clear and present danger -- one could even say imminent danger -- given Putin's warnings. Nor could the Bush administration easily reveal their source, given Putin's stature and his relationship with Saddam, which now appears to have been very convenient for Bush and Blair.
Maybe, as Hugh Hewitt suggested on his radio show last night, we need a commission to look into the 9/11 Commission.Sphere It View blog reactions
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Tracked on June 18, 2004 7:19 AM
» Dumb or Scum? from LeatherPenguin Blog
Well, the "non-partisan" circus has issued a final report, and the major media is spinning it for all it's worth. But these days they have a problem getting away... [Read More]
Tracked on June 18, 2004 7:32 AM
» Saddam: "But we too can harm you." from QandO
Captain Ed finds a fairly shocking story. I simply don't know what to make of this.... Russia warned the United States on several occasions that Iraq's Saddam Hussein planned "terrorist attacks" on its soil, President Vladimir Putin said Friday. "After... [Read More]
Tracked on June 18, 2004 8:10 AM
» Putin: Saddam Planned Terror Strikes on U.S. from The Politburo Diktat
"Just off the wires." Bah! Chyort! Misquoting Comrade Putin, I am sure. Imperialist Captain Ed has all the (I am sure erroneous, false, Bushite, lying) details.... [Read More]
Tracked on June 18, 2004 8:47 AM
» Putin: Russian intelligence warned US of terror threats from Iraq after 9/11 from Spartacus
This report from Reuters is interesting: Putin said Russian intelligence had been told on several occasions that Saddam's special forces were preparing to attack U.S. targets inside and outside the United States. "After the events of September 11, 2001... [Read More]
Tracked on June 18, 2004 9:02 AM
» Russia: Shared Intel with Washington that Iraq Planned to Attack US from Irreconcilable Musings
Reuters reports this morning that Russia knew Iraq had planned terror attacks on U.S. soil and had warned Washington. [Russian President Vladimir] Putin said Russian intelligence had been told on several occasions that Saddam's special forces were prep... [Read More]
Tracked on June 18, 2004 9:59 AM
» More news that will never see the light of day from INCITE
Russian President Vladimir Putin has plenty of reasons to dislike the United States. American officials routinely criticize his policies, condemn his human rights abuses, and join battle with him on the field of international diplomacy. I can't imagi... [Read More]
Tracked on June 18, 2004 10:04 AM
» Does Anyone Besides Me, Think This Smells Funny? from In Search of Utopia
So last week, Putin says the Democrats have no moral ground to criticize Bush going to war in Iraq. Now this. It just smells funny to me. Sounds to me like our Russian Comrade is trying to influence the U.S. election. Some of the Other Blogs, most n... [Read More]
Tracked on June 18, 2004 11:44 AM
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