Kelly called 45-minute claim 'risible'
Friday 05 September 2003
David Kelly laughed and dismissed as "risible" the Government's claim that Iraq could deploy weapons of mass destruction "within 45 minutes", a friend of the weapons expert said yesterday.
Tom Mangold, an author and former BBC journalist, told the Hutton inquiry he met Dr Kelly in 1998 when he was a UN weapons inspector. He became Mr Mangold's "principal interviewee" for a book on biological warfare. He said he had not discussed the dossier or the 45-minute claim with Dr Kelly before the war. But he said he raised the issue in a phone call when he talked to Dr Kelly about Andrew Gilligan's report on the Today programme, which claimed that the dossier had been "sexed up".
Mr Mangold told the inquiry: "We occasionally gossiped on the phone and on this occasion we got it about the 45-minute claim because I thought it sounded risible to me and I wondered what he thought about it. He thought it was risible too. He did not feel that weapons would be deployed or activated within 45 minutes."
Mr Mangold also revealed that Dr Kelly had read and agreed with an article he had written for The Times, arguing that the intelligence services were sceptical about the 45- minute claim, and that he had advised the BBC reporter Gavin Hewitt to call Dr Kelly to follow up Mr Gilligan's report.
He said that he had sent Dr Kelly an e-mail on 9 July, saying an article in The Times had made him think that "someone I know and admire" had been the source of the report by Mr Gilligan. Mr Mangold said: "You did not have to be Plato to work out that it would be David Kelly. It is such a small world, the biological weapons world, and there aren't many UK inspectors ... I only know about four or five. Of those, only David Kelly spoke to the press."
He called Dr Kelly's wife, Janice, on 18 July, after he received a telephone call saying that Dr Kelly had disappeared. He said: "She was still fairly upbeat and felt he must have had a heart attack or stroke. She felt he was lying in a field waiting to be found."
Board creates magnetic field to achieve lift
Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets
George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios
Does Chris Grayling realise what a vague concept he is dealing with?
Parties threaten resort's image as a family destination
- 1 Jack the Ripper: Scientist who claims to have identified notorious killer has 'made serious DNA error'
- 2 Banksy arrest hoax: Internet duped by fake report claiming street artist's identity has been revealed
- 3 Are you ready for Crazy Doritos, the red-hot snack food craze sweeping Mexico’s streets?
- 4 Drink alcohol and eat meat to improve male fertility - but cut down on coffee, studies suggest
- 5 Former East 17 frontman Brian Harvey turns up at Downing Street and 'demands to speak to Prime Minister'
Isis in Kobani: US resupplies Kurdish fighters by plane - then Turkey allows reinforcements through its border
Jack the Ripper: Scientist who claims to have identified notorious killer has 'made serious DNA error'
Banksy arrest hoax: Internet duped by fake report claiming street artist's identity has been revealed
Super-sized ships arrive in Britain: How big can they get?
Former East 17 frontman Brian Harvey turns up at Downing Street and 'demands to speak to Prime Minister'
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
Amal Alamuddin calls for the return of the Elgin Marbles from Britain: 'Injustice has persisted for too long'
London bus driver 'kicks gay couple off for kissing'
Lord Freud: Tory welfare minister apologises after saying disabled people are 'not worth’ the minimum wage
£120 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Liverpool: Job opportunities for Secon...
£60 - £65 per day: Randstad Education Liverpool: Job opportunities for Seconda...
£40000 - £50000 per annum + benefits: Ampersand Consulting LLP: Java Developer...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Ilford: School Office/ Finance Assistant Long t...