Letter shows Gore made Russian deal

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Letter shows Gore made Russian deal

) 2000

Vice President Al Gore, at the urging of Russian Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin, agreed to keep secret from Congress details of Russia's nuclear cooperation with Iran beginning in late 1995.

In a classified "Dear Al" letter obtained by The Washington Times, Mr. Chernomyrdin told Mr. Gore about Moscow's confidential nuclear deal with Iran and stated that it was "not to be conveyed to third parties, including the U.S. Congress." But sources on Capitol Hill said Mr. Gore withheld the information from key senators who normally would be told of such high-level security matters. The Gore-Chernomyrdin deal, disclosed in a letter labeled "secret," appears to violate a provision of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Act, which requires the Clinton administration to keep congressional oversight committees fully informed of all issues related to nuclear weapons proliferation. The Chernomyrdin letter on nuclear cooperation with Iran follows a report in the New York Times last week showing that Mr. Gore reached a secret deal with Russia several months earlier that appears to circumvent U.S. laws requiring the imposition of sanctions on Russia for its conventional arms sales to Iran. That arrangement also was kept secret from Congress, raising concerns among some lawmakers that the administration may be hiding other secret deals. Gore spokesman Jim Kennedy said: "It's obvious that the motivation for this leak is political." The letter "simply appears to be part of the overall United States effort to encourage the Russians to break off or limit their nuclear relationship with Iran," Mr. Kennedy said in a statement last night. The Dec. 9, 1995, letter on Iranian nuclear cooperation states that the two leaders' discussions as part of a special commission had resulted in "clarity and mutual understanding" on the matter. The letter said there were "no new trends" in Moscow's sale of nuclear equipment to Iran since a 1992 agreement. It also states that Russia and the United States would seek to prevent the "undermining of the nuclear arms non-proliferation program." Mr. Chernomyrdin said Moscow's program of building a nuclear reactor in Iran would be limited to training technicians in Russia, and the delivery of "nuclear fuel for the power plant for the years 2001 through 2011." "The information that we are passing on to you is not to be conveyed to third parties, including the U.S. Congress," Mr. Chernomyrdin said. "Open information concerning our cooperation with Iran is obviously a different matter, and we do no[t] object to the constructive use of such information. I am counting on your understanding." A classified analysis acompanying the letter stated that Russian assistance "if not terminated, can only lead to Iran's acquisition of a nuclear weapons capability." "Such a development would be destabilizing not only for the already volatile Middle East, but would pose a threat to Russian and Western security interests," the analysis stated. Russian promises to limit cooperation with Iran's nuclear program have been undermined by numerous U.S. intelligence reports showing Moscow is providing nuclear-weapons-related equipment to Tehran outside the scope of its declared limits, according to U.S. officials. A senior State Department official, Robert Einhorn, told a Senate subcommittee hearing earlier this month that Russian nuclear assistance is a "persistent problem" and that Russian companies linked to the government are providing Iran with "laser isotope separation technology" used to enrich uranium for weapons. Asked about the letter, congressional aides close to the issue said they knew nothing about the details that the Russian leader gave Mr. Gore. "All this nuclear cooperation is sanctionable," said a senior congressional aide. The secret Gore-Chernomyrdin dealings have become an issue in the presidential election campaign. Texas Gov. George W. Bush stated during a campaign stop in Michigan last week that the reported deal on Russian arms transfers to Iran was "a troubling piece of information." He demanded an explanation from the vice president. An earlier Gore-Chernomyrdin agreement, also obtained by The Washington Times, reveals that the United States would not impose sanctions on Russia required under U.S. law in exchange for Moscow's promise to end arms sales to Iran. That agreement, called an "aide memoire" and signed by Mr. Gore and Mr. Chernomyrdin on June 30, 1995, required Russia to halt all arms sales to Iran by Dec. 31, 1999. In exchange, the United States promised "to take appropriate steps to avoid any penalties to Russia that might otherwise arise under domestic law . . .," says the agreement, labeled "secret." The aide memoire also states that the United States would "pursue steps that would lead to the removal of Russia from the proscribed list of International Traffic in Arms Regulations of the United States"  which limits U.S. arms and defense-related technology sales. A third classified letter, from Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright, indicates that Russia is not living up to its promise to halt conventional arms deliveries to the Iranians. Mrs. Albright stated in a Jan. 13 letter to Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov, also labeled "secret," that "Russia's unilateral decision to continue delivering arms to Iran beyond the Dec. 31 deadline will unnecessarily complicate our relationship." "I urge that Russia refrain from any further deliveries of those arms covered by the aide memoire; provide specific information on what has been delivered, what remains to be shipped and anticipated timing; and refrain from concluding any additional arms contracts with Iran," Mrs. Albright stated. She added that the United States had lived up to its commitment in the 1995 Gore-Chernomyrdin aide memoire, including removing Russia from the list of nations limited by munitions-export controls. In the "Dear Igor" letter, Mrs. Albright stated that "without the aide memoire, Russia's conventional arms sales to Iran would have been subject to sanctions based on various provisions of our laws." The 1992 Iran-Iraq Nonproliferation Act requires the imposition of sanctions for "destabilizing" arms sales to either country. A 1996 amendment to the 1962 Foreign Assistance Act also requires sanctions on nations that provide lethal military assistance to a nation designated as a state sponsor of terrorism. Iran is on the State Department's terrorism sponsor list. Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, Mississippi Republican, and Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jesse Helms, North Carolina Republican, wrote to President Clinton on Friday asking about the 1995 aide memoire. "Please assure us . . . the vice president did not, in effect, sign a pledge with Victor Chernomyrdin in 1995 that committed your administration to break U.S. law by dodging sanctions requirements," they stated. Senate aides said the administration failed to notify the Senate about the specific arrangements to cover up for Russian arms sales. National Security Adviser Samuel R. Berger said on Sunday, contrary to Mrs. Albright's classified letter, that U.S. sanctions did not apply to Russia.

-- Uncle Bob (unclb0b@aol.com), October 17, 2000


Not suprising. The Republicans in Congress are going on another witch hunt in hopes of raking up enough muck to create suspicion among the the voters right before the election. It's called dirty politics, and the Repubs are the masters of the game. Sorry, I have more respect for integrity.

Here's another muckraking scheme by your old friend and hypocrite adulterer, Mr. Dan Burton...

Burton subpoenas White House visitor lists, overnight records

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The chairman of the House Government Reform Committee, Rep. Dan Burton, R-Indiana, on Monday issued a subpoena to the White House for all records related to the sharing of lists of visitors and overnight guests to the White House and Camp David from January 1, 1999 to the present.

The subpoena is part of the Reform Committee's continuing investigation into campaign practices, which it started in 1997.

First lady Hillary Rodham Clinton acknowledged that her U.S. Senate campaign was in error last Friday when she confirmed that 1,400 of 350,000 fund-raising letters were sent to official White House visitors.

"It was an error," she said, "and as soon as the campaign found out about it, we immediately moved to take action. We discovered the practical effect was [that] five people [had] made contributions totaling $250, and we're returning those."

In September, the White House released a list of 361 guests who stayed overnight at the White House or Camp David over a 13-month period. The release of the list was an effort to defuse charges that Mrs. Clinton rewarded contributors with special stays at the White House or Camp David.

Most of those visitors were found not to be contributors to Mrs. Clinton's campaign. The list did not include the dates of the visits, so it was not possible to check them against the dates of any contributions.

The subpoena does not single out the first lady's campaign and could cover the sharing of any lists of White House visitors with "any campaign committee from January 1, 1999, to the present."

A White House spokesman said, "We have received Chairman Burton's subpoena and the [White House] counsel's office is working to comply with it."

The White House has until October 23 to respond to the subpoena.

-- (repubs@are.losers), October 17, 2000.

There is something fishy about the hotlink for the website you gave for your article, Uncle Bob. Yours bring me to www.washtimes.com and when I type in www.washingtontimes.com I get on the same front page. I'm wondering if the site you gave is not a spoof.

-- (smarty@wannabe.one), October 17, 2000.

Nevermind, www.washingtontimes finally loaded (it was stuck for the longest time) and it too shows the same article. The link you gave must be a short cut and registered for same site.

-- (smarty@wannabe.one), October 17, 2000.

This has been on Fox News a number of times and now the WT gets it. Nice to see how some will portray it as a republican hunt, LOL. I bet Al doesn't come clean the way Reagan did. He'll ducks the investigators on this the same way he ducked the campaign funds issue.

-- Maria (anon@ymous.com), October 17, 2000.

"I bet Al doesn't come clean the way Reagan did."

LOL! You mean the way Reagan said he "did not recall" for about 6 months, and then finally appointed Oliver North as his official scapegoat?

Oh yeah, he really came clean. ROTFL!

-- (reagan@totally.honest), October 17, 2000.

Have you heard Ollie talking about this topic on CNN? Maybe you should keep your eyes and ears open for once. All documents were declassified so that investigators could look into it. Do you really think that your pal Gore will be so cooperative?

-- Maria (anon@ymous.com), October 17, 2000.

Maria, would that be the documents North didn't have shredded? And do you really consider six months of "I don't recall" as "coming clean"?

-- Patricia (PatriciaS@lasvegas.com), October 17, 2000.

As I recall, North was testifying in June 87. I was out of the country at the time, so I missed the details. The story didn't break until a few months earlier. I'm unsure of this six months you referred to. Is it the time from independent council appointment to North's testimony? Yeah you're right, papers were shredded but I think that's one of the approved ways to destroy classified information, (the other is incineration). And law firms handle proprietary information the same way. Look, they did some pretty inventive stuff in avoiding congressional laws. They felt justified in their purpose. I'm not saying what they did was right, no matter how much the ends may justify the means. What's Gore's purpose in not disclosing this information to the congressional oversight committee?

My definition of coming clean is to cooperate more fully than what I've seen from the current administration. MacDougal still hasn't testified.

What did Gore say on his campaign fund raising activities? Oh, that's right, "I didn't know". If he's said anymore than that, I'd like to know.

-- Maria (anon@ymous.com), October 17, 2000.

Speaking of coming clean,,,here is more on who and what the Washington Times is all about...The Washington Times Comments by the Reverened Sun Myung Moon

And you will all be glad to know The WT endorses Dubya for President.

-- Doc Paulie (fannybubbles@usa.net), October 24, 2000.

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