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Iraq Report: Intentions, Not Arms

Associated Press
Friday, September 17, 2004; Page A12

Drafts of a report from the top U.S. inspector in Iraq conclude that there were no weapons stockpiles but say there are signs that Saddam Hussein had dormant programs that he hoped to revive, according to people familiar with the findings.

In a 1,500-page report, the head of the Iraq Survey Group, Charles A. Duelfer, will say that the Iraqi president was importing banned materials, was working on unmanned aerial vehicles in violation of U.N. agreements and was maintaining a dual-use industrial sector that could produce weapons.

Duelfer will also say that Iraq had only small research-and-development programs for chemical and biological weapons.

He will conclude that Hussein had intentions of restarting his weapons programs at some point, after suspicions and inspections from the international community had waned.

After a year and a half in Iraq, however, U.S. forces have found no weapons of mass destruction -- the chief U.S. reason for overthrowing Hussein's government.

An intelligence official said that Duelfer could wrap up the report as soon as this month but noted that it may take time to declassify it.

Those who discussed the report inside and outside the government did so on the condition of anonymity because it contains classified material and has not yet been completed.

Duelfer's report is expected to offer findings similar to those reported by his predecessor, David Kay.

Kay presented an interim report to Congress in October. He left the inspector's post in January, saying "we were almost all wrong" about Hussein's weapons programs.

The new analysis, however, is expected to fall between the position of the Bush administration before the war -- which portrayed Hussein as a grave threat -- and the declarative statements Kay made after he resigned.

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