A U.S. newspaper is reporting that
relatives of Iraqi scientists told the Central Intelligence Agency before the
war that former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein had abandoned efforts to develop
weapons of mass destruction.
The New York Times Tuesday says the CIA failed to deliver those statements
to President Bush as he publicly warned that Baghdad was pursuing banned weapons.
The report says the failure was uncovered by the Senate Select Committee
on Intelligence, which will issue its first report this week on the handling
of pre-war intelligence on Iraq.
The Times says some CIA officials have played down the information
from the families, saying the statements were not convincing or definitive.
But the newspaper says the Senate report is expected to contain a "scathing" indictment
of the CIA and its leaders for failing to recognize the significance of the
President Bush said Tuesday he is looking forward to reading the report.