March 05, 2004
OUR PREWAR SUSPICIONS have been proven correct:
A group of Russian engineers secretly aided Saddam Hussein's long-range ballistic missile program, providing technical assistance for prohibited Iraqi weapons projects even in the years just before the war that ousted him from power, American government officials say. . . .
Because some of the Russian experts were said to have formerly worked for one of Russia's aerospace design centers, which remains closely associated with the state, their work for Iraq has raised questions in Washington about whether Russian government officials knew of their involvement in forbidden missile programs. "Did the Russians really not know what they were doing?" asked one person familiar with the United States intelligence reports.
They knew. And this is another example of why multilateralism has its limits -- you can't let your security be held hostage by "allies" who are actually on the other side.
UPDATE: More on Putin and Russia here.