You may have seen notices that ABC News will report on the “secret Saddam tapes” on “World News Tonight.” The network has just issued a news release describing some of the tapes, which it says are recordings of Saddam Hussein and his aides in discussions during the 1990s. From the release:
One of the most dramatic moments on the 12 hours of tape comes when Saddam predicts –during a meeting in the mid 1990s — a terrorist attack on the United States. “Terrorism is coming. I told the Americans a long time before August 2nd and told the British as well & that in the future there will be terrorism with weapons of mass destruction.” Saddam goes on to say such attacks would be difficult to stop. “In the future, what would prevent a booby trapped car causing a nuclear explosion in Washington or a germ or a chemical one?” But he adds that Iraq would never do such a thing. “This is coming, this story is coming but not from Iraq.”
Also at the meeting was Iraq’s Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz, who says Iraq was being wrongly accused of terrorism. “Sir, the biological is very easy to make. It’s so simple that any biologist can make a bottle of germs and drop it into a water tower and kill 100,000. This is not done by a state. No need to accuse a state. An individual can do it.”
ABC says the tapes also contain discussions of Iraq’s efforts to hide its weapons of mass destruction:
In one pivotal tape-recorded meeting, which occurred in late April or May of 1995, Saddam and his senior aides discuss the fact that UN inspectors had uncovered evidence of Iraq’s Biological Weapons program–a program the existence of which Iraq had previously denied.
At one point, Hussein Kamel, Saddam’s son-in-law and the man who was in charge of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction efforts can be heard on the tapes, speaking openly about hiding information from the UN.
“We did not reveal all that we have,” Kamel says in the meeting “not the type of weapons, not the volume of the materials we imported, not the volume of the production we told them about, not the volume of use. None of this was correct.”