The revelation, by the CIA's former European chief Tyler Drumheller, was broadcast on CBS's news magazine Sixty Minutes last night and added to the body of evidence that US and British leaders saw the weapons of mass destruction issue only as a selling point for a war they had already decided to wage for other reasons.
According to Mr Drumheller, Western intelligence services were told about Iraq's lack of chemical and biological weapons by Naji Sabri, a former Iraqi foreign minister. The CIA director of the time, George Tenet, took this information straight to President George Bush, Vice-President Dick Cheney and other senior officials, but it made no impression on them.
* Three American soldiers were killed yesterday when their vehicle hit a roadside bomb north-west of Baghdad. Twenty-three Iraqis also died in other violence yesterday, the day after Iraq's parliament elected a president, two vice-presidents, a parliament speaker and two deputies, which ended a long-standing political deadlock.Reuse content