Report: British intelligence may have "smoking gun" over Iraq WMDs pressure
The Independent reports that some British intelligence officers, fearing that they are being made the fall guys for the lack of WMDs in Iraq so far, claim they may have a "smoking gun" proving that they were subjected to untowards demands from the Balir government. The "smoking gun" is in the form of files recording communications with Blair's staff.
"A smoking gun may well exist over WMDs, but it may not be to the Government's liking," said one senior source. "Minuted details will show exactly what went on. Because of the frequency and, at times, unusual nature of the demands from Downing Street, people have made sure records were kept. There is a certain amount of self-preservation in this, of course."

Unlike the Intelligence and Security Committee - a group of MPs appointed by Mr Blair, which meets secretly - the Foreign Affairs Committee will hold its hearings in public and intends to publish its findings before MPs break up for the summer.

A number of the intended witnesses, including Tony Blair himself and some senior figures in the intelligence community, are likely to refuse to appear. The committee could then appeal for support to the House of Commons, forcing a highly embarrassing vote which the Government might lose.

Andrew Mackinlay, a Labour member of the committee who backed the Iraq war, predicted: "They will say they can't give evidence on matters affecting the security services, then either the committee will buckle or - more likely - there will be a major confrontation."
It would be interesting to find out exactly what this "smoking gun" is - or isn't. It will also be interesting to see if more US officials step forward like this.

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