article from nov 6, 2003, james risen, new york times.

link is here

  • talks about Imad Hage
  • says Hage sent messages to an 'influential adviser to the pentagon'
  • says 'iraqi officials' - plural, told hage
    • there were no WMDs
    • would allow americans to search for WMDs
    • would hand over a 1993 WTC bomb suspect
  • says Hage's contact in the Pentagon was in Feith's office
  • says iraqis 'portrayed' message as approved by Saddam
  • says Richard Perle met with Hage, in London, early march
  • things he says perle said:
    • perle 'sought authorization' from CIA officials
    • CIA officials said no
    • CIA officials had 'already engaged in separate contacts with Baghdad'
  • quote from a 'senior United States intelligence official' saying this was only one of many, many efforts for back channel negotiations.
    • foreign intelligence services
    • other governments
    • third parties
    • charlatans
  • "every lead that was plausible, and some that weren't, were followed up"
  • whole lot of other stuff in this article

" In one note to Mr. Perle in mid-March, Mr. Maloof relayed a message from Mr. Hage that Mr. Obeidi and Mr. Habbush were prepared to meet with you in Beirut, and as soon as possible, concerning 'unconditional terms.' The message from Mr. Hage said, Such a meeting has Saddam Hussein's clearance."

Question: What contacts with baghdad did the CIA have before the war? Were any with Habbush?

Question: Suskind says Habbush met with Shipster in Amman. But Rosen says Habbush met with Hage in Baghdad? Why the different locations?

Question: Was Habbush meeting with Shipster without Saddam knowing? Why? If he met with Hage, in Baghdad, with Saddam's approval, why hide the meetings with Shipster in Amman?

Question: article talks about Obeidi and Habbush. Who is Obeidi? How many Iraqi Intelligence were involved in this back channel stuff? Did any of them know about Habbush going to Amman to meet with Shipster, as Suskind's book says?