DOWNSIDE LEGACY AT TWO DEGREES OF PRESIDENT CLINTON
SECTION: GENERAL REFERENCE MATERIAL
SUBSECTION: NATIONAL LABORATORIES
Revised 1/8/01

 

NATIONAL LABORATORIES

LANL "The contract between the University of California and the Manhattan District of the Corps of Engineers (MED) to operate Project Y, Los Alamos Laboratory, was not signed until April 15, 1943, after the project was already under way. It was the first such contract between them. A rudimentary agreement was first laid out in a letter from Irwin Stewart on Jan. 23, 1943, and called for an Office of Scientific Research and Development (OSRD) contract with the University of California for "certain investigations to be directed by Dr. J. R. Oppenheimer," at a cost of $150,000 covering the period Jan. 1, 1943, to July 31, 1943. Such contracts had been the standard means of mobilizing university researchers to work in installations such as the radiation laboratory at the University of California, its namesake at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Chicago's metallurgical laboratory. Several such contracts had been established between the University of California and the OSRD. Robert M. Underhill, the secretary of the regents of the University of California, understood that the contract would be similar to the other OSRD contracts at Berkeley and, on that basis, agreed with UC President Robert Gordon Sproul to accept the letter of intent on Feb. 10, 1943...."

LANL "...Siegfried S. Hecker is the Director of the Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos New Mexico, a position he has held since January 1986. Joining the Los Alamos National Laboratory as a technical staff member in the Physical Metallurgy Group in 1973, he has served as Chairman of the Center for Materials Science and Division Leader of the Materials Science and Technology Division prior to becoming Director. Dr. Hecker began his professional career as a senior research metallurgist with the General Motors Research Laboratories in 1970 after two years as a postdoctoral appointee at Los Alamos...."

9/26/97 LANL Freeper Stand Watch Listen "....John C. Browne, a physicist with extensive experience in scientific and administrative leadership at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, is the choice of University of California President Richard C. Atkinson to become the laboratory's next director. Atkinson will recommend Browne's appointment as soon as possible to the UC Board of Regents. The Regents, under the university's contract with the DOE to manage the Los Alamos laboratory, are responsible for appointing the laboratory director. A determination of Browne's acceptability by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is pending, as provided in the contract. The appointment will be effective one month from the date of action by the Regents at a yet to be scheduled meeting. The laboratory's current director, Siegfried S. Hecker, who had planned to step down on Oct. 1, has agreed to stay on until the effective date of Browne's appointment to provide for an efficient transition. Atkinson chose to make his recommendation of Browne known now in response to growing interest among laboratory employees and regional communities as to the transition of leadership at the laboratory. The transition period, Atkinson said, will give Browne the opportunity to talk informally with employees and others outside the laboratory about its future....."

Press Release Los Alamos National Lab 6/6/97 "...Los Alamos National Laboratory has merged two programs, the office of Energy Technology and the Industrial Partnership Office, into a single program called the Civilian Industrial Technology Office, to enhance the Laboratory's technology transfer and role in civilian federal programs such as fossil fuel and energy technologies, according to Charryl Berger, director of the new office..... In April, Motorola and the Laboratory signed an agreement that will lead to technical advances in computing power and semiconductor design. Los Alamos will benefit from Motorola's expertise in electronics and communications technologies to help the Laboratory incorporate specialized software into a variety of operating systems for its national security mission. Motorola will benefit from the Laboratory's expertise in computer simulations and modeling for the design of future-generation semiconductor chips...... "

Los Alamos 11/12/96 "...The Department of Energy, in cooperation with its three national security laboratories - Lawrence Livermore, Los Alamos and Sandia - announced today the formation of a multimillion-dollar, multi-year program to create university centers of excellence. These centers will assist the DOE laboratories in developing the technology needed for large-scale computer simulation that supports the Administration's nuclear test ban objectives. Recently President Clinton announced major purchases of computers by the DOE laboratories capable of performing multi-trillion operations per second. Initial deliveries of these systems are under way. These systems were designed to operate in both the classified and unclassified environments. Energy Secretary Hazel O'Leary, in highlighting the importance of DOE's supercomputing initiative, stated that "These new computers will assure the safety and reliability of our nuclear arsenal without underground testing and address major scientific challenges in medicine, transportation safety and weather and earthquake prediction."...."

Los Alamos 2/9/99 "...Sue Goff of the Department of Energy's Los Alamos National Laboratory has been re-elected to the board of directors of the Geothermal Resources Council and elected to the board of directors of the International Geothermal Association. Both organizations advocate geothermal energy research, exploration and development; offer educational opportunities for the worldwide geothermal community; and provide a forum for interaction on geothermal development issues....... Her work has taken her to Honduras, Guatemala, Russia, China and other places worldwide on behalf of Los Alamos and other institutions. ..."

Associated Press, Nando Media 6/26/99 "...Scientists have postponed indefinitely a planned open-air release of bacteria that would have been used Monday to test biowarfare detectors intended for battlefield use. The planned tests at Los Alamos National Laboratory have raised questions about the lab's openness with the public as scientists expand their research into identifying and defending against biowarfare agents. Homeowners in nearby White Rock complained to senior lab managers. Lab officials did not reveal the exact nature of the concerns in White Rock but agreed last week to postpone the tests indefinitely.... Scientists had planned to release about an ounce of Bacillus globigii spores six times Monday night. The brownish-yellow clouds of bacteria spores were to have been released near the end of Frijoles Mesa...."

FoxNews 7/8/99 AP "…Unable to ease public fears, Los Alamos National Laboratory canceled plans Thursday to release a common strain of bacteria into the atmosphere to test new biowarfare detectors. Many residents who attended a public meeting Wednesday night in White Rock, about 10 miles downwind from the test site, said they were worried about the possible dangers. White Rock has a population of about 6,500. Don Cobb, the lab's associate director for threat reduction, said Thursday that the tests were "provably safe with a high degree of scientific certainty,'' but that he decided to cancel them because "maintaining the trust and confidence of our neighbors is essential.'' The government said the bacterium, Bacillus globigii, is a harmless organism found in root vegetables such as potatoes and carrots. It was intended to serve as a stand-in for deadly bacteria such as anthrax in a test of the toaster-size detectors…."

Reuters 3/21/99 Freeper Brian Mosely "…Energy Secretary Bill Richardson Sunday defended security for U.S. nuclear arms research, describing some reports about Chinese spying as unfounded hysteria…."

MSNBC Web 3/9/99 Jonathan Broder "…As the Clinton administration grapples with the fallout from China's suspected theft of American nuclear secrets, other countries are openly trying to squeeze classified military data from the United States by linking the inclusion of that data to their purchases of major weapons systems. …IN THE MOST dramatic example of this new kind of squeeze play, the United Arab Emirates is now demanding that top-secret source codes be included in its order for 80 sophisticated F-16 warplanes from Lockheed-Martin in Fort Worth, Texas. …"

(Asian) Wall Street Jornal 3/12/99 Craig Smith, Matt Forney Eduardo lachica "…While no one suggests shrugging off allegations Beijing may have stolen critical U.S. nuclear weapons technology, the timing of the controversy is all too familiar to old China hands. One reason for the seasonal assault, they say, is the politically charged annual debate over whether to renew China's most-favored-nation (now called Normal Trade Relations) trading status when it comes up for review in June. "Those of us who live and work in the world of U.S.-China relations understand that every spring, something serious is likely to arise," says Robert Kapp, head of the U.S.-China Business Council….This year's expected $67 billion U.S. trade deficit with China could also make it harder for Congress to agree on any deal to admit China into the World Trade Organization without substantial trade concessions…."

FoxNews AP 3/31/99 "… The government's disarmament agency is going out of business after a 38-year run that included the negotiation of international agreements aimed at controlling nuclear, biological and chemical weapons. The Arms Control and Disarmament Agency will got out of business at midnight, its functions being taken over by the State Department. John Holum, who has served as ACDA director since 1993, is due to become the first undersecretary of state for arms control and international security affairs, once he is confirmed by the Senate. …."

Fox News Wire 4/11/99 Marcia Dumb "...A $250 million missile-warning satellite that was left stranded in a useless orbit had the Air Force scrambling Sunday in an attempt to rescue it. "They haven't given up,'' said Patsy Bomhoff, a spokeswoman at Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado. "They're working around the clock.'' The Defense Support Program satellite was launched Friday aboard an Air Force Titan rocket. It was the first flight of a Titan IV since a spy satellite was destroyed in a $1 billion explosion shortly after liftoff last August.....The satellite was intended for a 22,300-mile-high orbit, where it was to have joined other Defense Support Program spacecraft in detecting missile and rocket launches as well as nuclear detonations...."

AP 4/15/99 "The Pentagon on Wednesday rejected a merger between defense giants General Dynamics Corp. and Newport News Shipbuilding that would have created a single shipbuilder for all nuclear submarines. ...."

Chicago Sun-Times 7/12/99 Robert Novak "…Jack Kemp last Wednesday released a startling document that was quickly consigned to oblivion. An experienced weapons scientist found that the Cox Report erred in claiming Chinese espionage penetrated U.S. weapons laboratories while failing to recognize Clinton administration culpability. As much as President Clinton would rather not hear this, Republicans like it even less…. A scientist and no politician, Prather takes 26 pages to demolish the impressions left by the bipartisan report of the select House committee headed by Republican Rep. Christopher Cox of California. He declares that Clinton's nuclear disarmament opened the nation's nuclear secrets to the world, while the post-Cox Report tightening of security actually enlarged the true menace of Russian nuclear proliferation by ending cooperation with Moscow. There goes the Clinton administration's credibility. There goes the GOP's Chinese peril. No wonder nobody likes it. Prather for many years had access to national secrets, but not in preparing this analysis. He relied on the Cox committee's report and, significantly, the widely ignored findings by government technical experts... "

Associated Press 3/17/99 H. Josef Hebert, "… Richardson said he was directing a formal inquiry into allegations that a senior department counterintelligence officer had been prevented from disclosing to Congress his concerns about the security breach at Los Alamos. According to published reports, Notra Trulock, a senior intelligence officer at the department, had said he had been prevented from sharing information with Congress about the Los Alamos investigation by Elizabeth Moler, then deputy energy secretary …."

USA TODAY 4/6/99 Barbara Slavin "… Los Alamos National Laboratory, under fire in connection with alleged spying by China, faces charges over nuclear-related exports to Russia, lab officials say. The Commerce Department notified the lab in New Mexico in January that it was preparing civil charges over unlicensed exports of nuclear detectors and a computer router. They were provided from 1994-96 in a program to help Russia safeguard vast reserves of nuclear materials. Lab director John Browne said the issue involves bureaucratic procedures more than national security. "It's one of those gray areas of interpretation. At the time, the interpretation made here was that a license was not required." But Rep. Christopher Cox, R-Calif., head of a special committee looking into high-tech transfers to China, said the case was indicative of security problems at U.S. nuclear labs. "I would hope the Department of Energy and Los Alamos would use this as an example of what will no longer be tolerated," he said. Commerce Department regulations on the books since 1990 forbid exports without a license to organizations involved in the development, design, manufacturing, testing or maintenance of nuclear weapons. Penalties include fines and a loss of export privileges…."

www.newsweek.com 5/10/99 "...What Sen. Don Nickles last week called possibly "the most serious case of espionage in U.S. history" may not result in spying charges against a man suspected of sharing secrets with the Chinese. A top administration official told NEWSWEEK that the most serious charge the government may be able to bring against Wen Ho Lee, a scientist at Los Alamos nuclear laboratory, may be "unauthorized disclosure" of classified information. Sources say extensive FBI searches of Lee's computers and papers have so far turned up "no smoking gun," and last year, when the bureau ran a "false flag" sting against him, Lee didn't take the bait. Says John Lewis, former head of the FBI's national-security division, "There was some smoke, but we had no conclusive evidence. There were many doubts on the part of all of us" that Lee was a spy...."

New York Post 4/29/99 STEVE DUNLEAVY "....Can anyone with the IQ of room temperature tell me why Wen Ho Lee is not behind bars right now? Wen has sold us down a river of no return, government officials say. I mean, literally millions of coded lines just sent out to anyone who wants to pick it up. And those coded lines, millions of them, were of secrets of our nuclear capability from Los Alamos. Those secrets were not about how good we are but how good somebody else could be if they just looked over our shoulder and copied our test paper. Madness..... "

Bill Gertz Washington Times 7/31/98 "Government officials scrambling to meet the Clinton administration's deadline for the bulk release of classified documents have inadvertently disclosed nuclear weapons data that could help terrorists or foreign states, according to papers obtained by The Washington Times. Energy Department surveys, conducted earlier this year of defense documents scheduled for automatic public release in 2000 without individual review, found at least 11 instances in which highly sensitive nuclear weapons information was misfiled or declassified improperly.The compromised data included a State Department document identifying the locations of overseas nuclear weapons storage facilities -- information that was mistakenly declassified and posted on the Internet before being withdrawn.Also revealed were improperly declassified Marine Corps documents that contained secret information about nuclear weapons yields. A U.S. official said Japanese authorities were able to copy the documents, which were stored improperly in an open area.The Energy Department determined that in both cases, the risk to U.S. national security was "serious," according to one department document."

Associated Press 7/19/99 John Diamond "...Republican lawmakers are struggling to free up the annual bill for the CIA and other espionage agencies amid disagreement on reorganizing the Energy Department following security lapses at U.S. nuclear weapons labs. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson has hinted he can accept the GOP-sponsored bill, but some Senate Democrats are still leery of redesigning the agency responsible for researching and developing nuclear weapons and protecting nuclear secrets from spies. In May, Republicans were unable to break a Democratic filibuster on the issue when it was attached to Pentagon legislation ....The legislation, offered as an amendment to the intelligence authorization bill, would establish a semiautonomous "Agency for Nuclear Stewardship'' that would oversee all nuclear weapons related activities, including research, development, security and counterintelligence. An undersecretary at the head of the agency would report directly to the secretary of energy. No other Energy Department officials would have any power over the new organization. ..."

The Times 7/18/99 Jonathan Leake "...Brookhaven National Laboratories (BNL), one of the American government's foremost research bodies, has spent eight years building its Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) on Long Island in New York state. A successful test-firing was held on Friday and the first nuclear collisions will take place in the autumn, building up to full power around the time of the millennium. Last week, however, John Marburger, Brookhaven's director, set up a committee of physicists to investigate whether the project could go disastrously wrong. It followed warnings by other physicists that there was a tiny but real risk that the machine, the most powerful of its kind in the world, had the power to create "strangelets" - a new type of matter made up of sub-atomic particles called "strange quarks". The committee is to examine the possibility that, once formed, strangelets might start an uncontrollable chain reaction that could convert anything they touched into more strange matter. The committee will also consider an alternative, although less likely, possibility that the colliding particles could achieve such a high density that they would form a mini black hole. In space, black holes are believed to generate intense gravitational fields that suck in all surrounding matter. The creation of one on Earth could be disastrous...."

The American Spectator 8/99 Kenneth R. Timmerman "...China first tested a radiation-enhanced warhead on September 29, 1988. According to Nicholas Efftimiades, who published a book on Chinese Intelligence Operations in 1994, the FBI launched a counter-intelligence investigation after that first test, and determined that Chinese agents had succeeded in stealing critical design information from the Lawrence Livermore Nuclear Lab for the W-70 (neutron bomb) warhead, by coopting U.S. scientists during visits to the lab by Chinese officials. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson has used the neutron bomb case to support his assertion that Republican administrations were equally guilty of allowing Chinese nuclear spies to penetrate U.S. nuclear labs, and did nothing about it. But the Cox report states (page 87) that a more recent theft of classified neutron bomb- related design information was reported by the intelligence community in 1996. Until now, neither Richardson nor the FBI has acknowledged taking any corrective measures relating to that theft. ..."

Washington Post 7/20/99 Walter Pincus "…The Department of Energy has taken initial steps to tighten security in the wake of alleged Chinese spying, but it faces substantial stumbling blocks that almost certainly will delay counterespionage measures, according to an internal report made available to The Washington Post….. The report says, however, that some administrators at the nation's three main nuclear weapons laboratories believe that "it will be necessary to change current contract language" before the department can require the so-called lie detector tests at the national labs, which are operated under contract with the University of California and Lockheed Martin Corp….. the report says, the FBI has not yet taken over the job of conducting background investigations of laboratory personnel who require security clearances…. The report also calls for speeding up the establishment of a new system to keep track of foreign visitors to the labs and foreign scientists working in the labs on assignment.…. "

Sacramento Bee 7/21/99 Michael Doyle "...Some angry lawmakers want to strip the University of California from its management of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, even as the lab is getting credit for improving security. While investigators praised the nuclear-weapons lab Tuesday for upgrading its security program, cries continue on Capitol Hill for some heads to roll. Foremost among these, some believe, should be the university that's run Lawrence Livermore for half a century..... "

The Center For Security Policy 7/21/99 "... Why was President Clinton's Rose Garden statement yesterday -- in which he urged Senate hearings this fall and final action on the 1996 Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty -- all but ignored today by the Nation's leading newspapers?.... Whatever the reason, the White House press corps' failure to publicize these presidential remarks does not bode well for the power-play that anti-nuclear activists within and outside the Clinton-Gore Administration hope to unleash in the next few weeks in a bid to secure Senate advice and consent to this controversial and fatally flawed accord....The following were among the more egregious misrepresentations in Mr. Clinton's statement: "We have, today, a robust nuclear force." The fact is that we are not sure whether today's U.S. deterrent is "robust." In the interval since 1992, when the United States unilaterally suspended its underground nuclear test program, officials at the national laboratories responsible for certifying the stockpile have been reduced to making informed guesses about the actual condition of our arsenal.... "Nuclear experts affirm that we can maintain a safe and reliable deterrent without nuclear tests." Actually, some do; some don't. In fact, until Mr. Clinton's first Secretary of Energy Hazel O'Leary blackmailed the U.S. nuclear laboratories into agreeing to support the CTBT, virtually no one in positions of responsibility for the American deterrent believed that it could be safely and reliably maintained in the absence of periodic underground testing... "If our Senate fails to act, the treaty cannot enter into force for any country." The implication is that if, on the other hand, the Senate does act, the CTBT will come into force. This is not the case. Unless and until all other nuclear powers -- including North Korea, which has shown no interest in joining the treaty regime -- become state parties, the Comprehensive Test Ban cannot, by its own terms, come into force.... He declared: "The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty will strengthen our national security by constraining the development of more advanced and more destructive nuclear weapons, and by limited the possibilities for more countries to acquire nuclear weapons. It will also enhance our ability to detect suspicious activities by other nations." In fact, due to the inherent unverifiability of a "zero-yield" Comprehensive Test Ban, there is no way to say for certain whether other nations are exploiting the ability to conduct undetectable low-yield and/or de-coupled tests to develop "more advanced and more destructive nuclear weapons." .....More to the point, there is now an active world market for nuclear weapons-related know-how and technology. Nations no longer need to test their own nuclear devices; they can buy tested ones from the likes of Russia and China..... "

Washington Weekly 7/26/99 Rep Bereuter House of Representatives 7/19/99 "…Mr. Speaker, following the public release of the Final Report of the Select Committee on U.S. National Security and Military/Commercial Concerns with the People's Republic of China, more commonly referred to as the Cox Committee report, there have been attempts to discredit the work of the select committee. As one of the nine members of the select committee, this Member would like to reemphasize the truly bipartisan nature of the select committee and underscore that every finding made by the Cox committee in its report is fully corroborated with evidence detailed either in the public report itself or in the classified version. The Cox committee report is not and has never claimed to be a comprehensive report, nor was it ever meant to be one…..In the course of our investigation, far more disturbing information came to light that took us into unanticipated directions. Even as we were trying to close the select committee's operations, new revelations kept being brought to our attention by whistleblowers. It became clear that a very deep institutional problem had existed for some time in some of our Federal agencies and particularly the Department of Energy and its national laboratories, there at least since the late 1970s. I believe that these lapses of security at the DOE weapons laboratories taken together resulted in the most serious espionage loss and counterintelligence failure in American history. Moreover, these lapses facilitated the most serious theft ever of sensitive U.S. technology and information. Clearly, what the select committee revealed is very disturbing. Americans should be angry that their own government's lax security, indifference, naivete and incompetence resulted in such serious damage to our national security. The loss of sensitive nuclear weapons information to China is a national embarrassment and an incredibly important loss…."

The most recent distortion circulated in Washington and in the national media is a document written by Dr. James Gordon Prather entitled 'A Technical Reassessment of the Conclusions and Implications of the Cox Committee Report.' It was released personally by the Honorable Jack Kemp after Empower America, the organization to which Mr. Kemp belongs and which sponsored Dr. Prather's research, refused to endorse the final document. The Prather document was also the subject of a Wall Street Journal article and one of Robert Novak's columns last week. Dr. Prather claims that our select committee erred in finding that Chinese espionage penetrated U.S. weapons labs. Indeed he claims there was no evidence of Chinese espionage, that the real culprit is the Clinton administration's policy of unilateral nuclear disarmament and opening up the Nation's nuclear secrets to the world. That is pure nonsense. Of course there was espionage…… For example, the Prather document essentially dismisses the charge that China stole design information for the neutron bomb with the help of Taiwan-born Peter Lee. This dismissal is based on a deliberately selective reading of our report, faulty assumptions and a disregard for other information which is still classified. The Prather document called this theft charge (quote) 'ridiculous' (unquote) and opined that the Cox Committee, in its zeal to be bipartisan, claimed the Chinese stole neutron bomb information (quote), 'because the alleged spying happened on Reagan's watch, not Clinton's watch.' (unquote). Notwithstanding Dr. Prather's interpretations, Peter Lee pled guilty to willfully passing classified U.S. defense information to PRC scientists and to providing false statements to a U.S. government agency…."

Sunday Times of London 7/25/99 Matthew Campbell "…AMERICAN officials believe Russia may have stolen some of the nation's most sensitive military secrets, including weapons guidance systems and naval intelligence codes, in a concerted espionage offensive that investigators have called operation Moonlight Maze. The intelligence heist, that could cause damage to America in excess of that caused by Chinese espionage in nuclear laboratories, involved computer hacking over the past six months. This was so sophisticated and well co-ordinated that security experts trying to build ramparts against further incursions believe America may be losing the world's first "cyber war". Investigators suspect Russia is behind the series of "hits" against American computer systems since January. In one case, a technician trying to track a computer intruder watched in amazement as a secret document from a naval facility was "hijacked" to Moscow from under his nose….. Besides military computer systems, private research and development institutes have been plundered in the same operation. Such institutes are reluctant to discuss losses, which experts claim may amount to hundreds of millions of dollars….. Dozens of infiltrations ensued at other military facilities and even at the Pentagon in Washington. When research laboratories also reported incursions using the internet technique, officials realised that a "cyber invasion" was under way….. Even top secret military installations whose expertise is intelligence security have been breached. At the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (Spawar), a unit in San Diego, California, that specialises in safeguarding naval intelligence codes, Ron Broersma, an engineer, was alerted to the problem when a computer print job took an unusually long time…."

Associated Press 7/16/99 Michael J. Sniffen "…Critics of the FBI crime lab are disappointed that the Justice Department has proposed ``minimal'' discipline -- censure of just two bureau employees -- despite a scathing inspector general report a year ago. Four lab supervisors also would have been disciplined but they have retired, according to a June 30 Justice memorandum obtained by The Associated Press. Five lab examiners criticized in the report avoided discipline because of either the ``staleness'' of their alleged misconduct, disputes over scientific issues, or the ``consistent and often spirited FBI opposition to any conclusion that its employees have engaged in misconduct or performed poorly,'' wrote Assistant Attorney General Stephen R. Colgate, who issued the disciplinary rulings….. Indeed, Colgate endorsed the inspector general's lab policy recommendations and added three more of his own designed to ensure that FBI lab examiners testify in court ``in an accurate and objective manner and limit their testimony to their documented scientific findings and areas of technical expertise.'' The slap on the wrist disappointed two lab critics: Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, chairman of a Senate subcommittee that supervises the FBI, and the Justice Department's inspector general, Michael Bromwich….."

AP 7/23/99 "…The Energy Department's Sandia National Laboratory last week bought back a supercomputer it had sold as surplus to Korber Jiang, a Chinese citizen who is the principle of EHI Group USA and exports American goods to his home country. Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa., called Friday for Energy Secretary Bill Richardson's resignation, saying that the computer could have been used "to design nuclear weapons.'' "He's going around the country saying there are no problems in the Department of Energy, that everything is under control,'' Weldon said in a telephone interview. "If there are no problems, then how can this happen?'' Neal Singer, a spokeswoman for Sandia National Laboratories, said that the New Mexico facility sold the Intel Paragon XPS to Korber's one-man company for $30,000 in October. After discovering Korber's nationality, Singer said, the department bought back the computer for $88,000 last week and stored it under guard at Sandia. The spokesman said the difference in cost may have been due to shipping costs incurred by Korber…."

Washington Post 7/24/99 Walter Pincus "…To mollify Congress, the Department of Energy is preparing to give polygraph tests to thousands of nuclear scientists. But at the same time, a Senate panel has asked the CIA and FBI to explore alternatives to polygraphing because of the "potential unreliability" of the so-called lie-detector exams. …. Concern about the unreliability of the standard polygraph is also growing at the Department of Energy's nuclear weapons labs. In a recent letter in the Los Alamos National Laboratory's employee newsletter, one scientist noted that the expected rate of false positives--tests indicating someone is lying when that person is not--is about 2 percent. "In our situation, that's 100 innocent people out of 5,000 whose reputations and careers would be blemished," wrote the scientist, John D. Fowler Jr. And what will happen if a prominent weapons designer or the leader of a research team fails a polygraph? That is a question many lab employees are now posing, according to one Energy Department official….. Two of the main nuclear weapons labs, Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore, are run by the University of California under contract with the Energy Department. The third big research center, Sandia Laboratories, is run by Lockheed Martin Corp. Since the labs are in the private sector, employees cannot be required to take polygraphs as a condition of employment…."

WorldNet Daily 7/27/99 Jon Dougherty "...As if this should surprise us, the London Times reported this past weekend that Russian computer hackers had stolen enough U.S. weapon systems data to make China's nuclear weapons theft seem like honest bargaining. That's a pretty remarkable feat, to say the least, but it also proves what critics of this administration's pitiful security record have repeatedly said -- that there is no security for the nation's most advanced weapons and computer systems. The Times reported that U.S. officials have uncovered a Moscow-based intelligence operation known as "Moonlight Maze," a continual cyberattack "so sophisticated and well coordinated that security experts trying to build ramparts against further incursions believe America may be losing the first 'cyber war.'" The computer systems of U.S. corporations and think tanks have also been 'attacked' and have had large amounts of data stolen.....Gee whiz, if we don't figure out how to stop these cyber-thefts, our weapons technology will eventually be used against us and then there won't be anyone left to give a tax cut to. Nothing -- not government or private industry secrets -- will be immune from hacking nor safe from cyberattack. Cyberattacks can also be used to disrupt information systems or destroy them, as well as extract information from them...."

7/23/99 to Louis Freeh FBI from Rep Weldon "...I am writing to convey my strong concern about a serious breach of United States national security. According to Insight Magazine, in October Sandia National Laboratory officials sold as surplus an Intel Paragon XPS supercomputer with a capability between 150,000 and 200,000 million theoretical operations per second (MTOPS) -- one of the United States' most capable supercomputers operating today. The potential national security ramifications of this sale are disastrous. As I understand it, we remain unaware of the current location of this supercomputer -- it may even have already been transferred out of the country. If, in fact, this computer is or has been successfully transported out of the United States, the capability it will provide to the Chinese in their efforts to improve their nuclear weapons capability is enormous. In my opinion, this could be one of the most significant breaches of our national security. The problem is magnified because we do not know what the computer was used for at Sandia National Laboratory. There is a very real possibility that nuclear secrets may be stored on the system's hard drive. Even with a "wipe" of the supercomputers memory, much of the information that was stored on the system can be retrieved using advanced techniques. There also exists the very real possibility that the Chinese have reassembled the supercomputer and are utilizing the system's capabilities right here in the United States. The possibility also exists that the Chinese may attempt to reverse-engineer the machine. ....As I understand it, the Department of Energy -- once alerted by the Intel Corporation of efforts by the buyer to obtain key components to reassemble the supercomputer -- attempted to reacquire the supercomputer by offering $2.5 million for its return. It had been sold to the Chinese national at the bargain basement price of $30,000. This appears to me as an attempt by DOE to quietly cover up the diversion...."

New York Times 7/30/99 James Risen "...Energy Secretary Bill Richardson has ordered a one-day stand-down next week of many of the Energy Department's research and defense-related operations for counter-espionage and security training in the wake of charges that China had stolen nuclear secrets from a government weapons laboratory. Richardson ordered the department's defense-related facilities, except its three nuclear weapons laboratories, shut down on Aug. 3 for mandatory security training, including sessions on computer security. The government's nuclear weapons labs -- Los Alamos, Sandia and Lawrence Livermore -- had already completed security-related stand-downs and are not covered by the new order..... Next week's stand-down at the defense-related sites had been recommended by the Energy Department's new security chief, Eugene Habiger, a retired Air Force general and former chief of the U.S. Strategic Command. He had urged Richardson to extend the computer and security training already mandated for the nuclear weapons labs to defense-related facilities that handle classified information but which had not yet been subject to intensive review. "The security problems at DOE extend to sites beyond the nuclear weapons labs," Richardson said in an interview. "We've had problems with safeguards and security at some of the non-weapons sites, some of which have received low security ratings. We are sending a signal to the employees that security is a top priority."...."

AP 7/29/99 John Diamond "...The Energy Department is ordering an expansion in its campaign against espionage, moving the focus beyond the nuclear weapons labs and into the research and manufacturing centers that handle classified security-related information. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson is ordering today a one-day suspension of operations at Energy Department research and defense-related sites next week for training on espionage prevention and other national security issues. Richardson accepted the recommendation of his newly installed security chief that a stand-down occur department-wide at defense-related work sites that have not yet had their counterespionage and information security systems reviewed. The main point of the stand-down, scheduled for Aug. 3, is to give employees an entire mandatory day of training on information security...."

Drudge 7/29/99 "...60 MINUTES is set to air the first interview with Dr. Wen Ho Lee since the Los Alamos nuke scientist was accused of passing on America's most prized nuclear secrets to the Chinese. .... In the interview, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned, Lee explains one of the biggest charges against him -- that he downloaded sensitive classified computer information --- into an unclassified machine. Lee called that transfer a "routine" part of his job -- that other people at the Lab also have also done. Lee: "The reason I downloaded the computer code from a classified machine to an unclassified machine, is part of my job -- to protect my code. A lot of people do that routinely to protect. Plus, when I downloaded into unclassified machines I have three levels of passwords -- sometime I have even had hard time to break in myself." ..."

New York Times 8/1/99 William Broad "...In the wake of the Chinese spy scandal, support is growing in the United States for ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, a global accord meant to end the development of new kinds of nuclear arms. The process of treaty deliberation and approval had been moribund for nearly two years, but is now showing signs of life.... Backers of the test ban see it as a way of blocking any nation from making new kinds of nuclear weapons and the world from engaging in new arms races. Such a ban is possible because makers of nuclear arms in most cases must detonate new designs in fiery blasts to spot flaws and insure potency. So the absence of explosive testing acts as a brake on nuclear arms development.... "We may never know whether Chinese nuclear weapons development benefited significantly from espionage," the signers added. But the treaty, they said, would help keep any lost secrets from speeding the development of deadly arms. The letter quoted Harold Agnew, a former director of the federal center for the design of nuclear arms at Los Alamos, N.M. "If China doesn't resume testing," he said, "no harm will possibly have been done other than to our egos." ..."

Capitol Hill Blue 8/2/99 "...``The truth is I'm innocent,'' Wen Ho Lee said in an interview aired Sunday on CBS' 60 Minutes. ``Suddenly, they told me I'm a traitor. ... I just don't understand this.'' But Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said on the program that it was ``wrong and improper'' for Lee to have moved the information at the Energy Department's nuclear weapons laboratory in Los Alamos, N.M., to an unsecured computer. That would make it easier for the Chinese and others to gain access to the information. ``He violated our national security procedure at Los Alamos as a government employee of the United States,'' Richardson said. ``This is something that we are not going to tolerate.''....He called the transfers of data a common practice by scientists at the lab. Asked why he was singled out for the espionage investigation, Lee suggested that authorities needed a scapegoat and as a Chinese person born in Taiwan ``they think I'm perfect for them.'' Richardson denied that Lee, a U.S. citizen since 1974, was being made a scapegoat. ``This man massively violated our security procedures at Los Alamos,'' he said, referring to improper contacts with Chinese officials and violations of security rules by his transfer of secret data to unclassified computers..."

Los Angles Times 8/1/99 William Rempel "...Attorneys for Wen Ho Lee have made a spirited last-ditch effort to head off indictment of the fired nuclear weapon scientist, arguing in a confidential report to the Department of Justice and in recent private meetings with prosecutors that Lee "used considerable care" to protect the security of secret nuclear codes when he transferred data to an unclassified computer system. The transfers were made for "a good reason," the attorneys asserted, explaining that it was easier to work with the data outside the classified system and because the extra file provided a backup in case the computers crashed. The attorneys called Lee a victim of political hysteria and "a scapegoat for the scandalous lack of security" at the national weapon laboratories, which are run by the Department of Energy....In another case much like Lee's, defense lawyers said that a Los Alamos scientist downloaded from a classified computer to an unclassified system material from the lab's "green book," a secret assessment of the status, maintenance needs and vulnerabilities of some of the nation's most sophisticated weapons. "The scientist was fined and suspended but kept his job and was not criminally prosecuted," the brief says. "Given the numerous individuals who have mishandled classified information but have not been prosecuted, the discriminatory effect of charging Dr. Lee is clear," it says...."

Associated Press 8/3/99 Josef Herbert "...Energy Secretary Bill Richardson today accused former Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee of using his race to depict himself as a victim after he "massively violated our security system." Richardson was asked by reporters about Lee's recent television comments that he was targeted because of his Asian descent, and his denial that he ever provided nuclear secrets to China.... "I have little sympathy for him," Richardson said of Lee, who has not been charged with any crime....Lee admitted that he "routinely" shifted thousands of secret files from a highly secured computer system at the Los Alamos weapons lab to his unsecured office computer, but claimed such transfers were a "very common practice" among nuclear weapons designers. Richardson called that assertion "pure bunk" and said any such transfers are considered serious security violations. "This 'everybody does it business' is just a sorry excuse," he said...."

http://www.senate.gov/~thompson/wen-ho.html 8/6/99 Senator Fred Thompson and Joseph Lieberman "... In 1995, the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) independently acquired certain information indicating that the People's Republic of China (PRC) may have acquired certain highly-sensitive information on several U.S. nuclear weapons, including design information on the W-88 warhead Although this new information indicated the possible compromise of several warheads, DOE's initial investigation focused exclusively upon the W-88. The DOE team apparently failed to look into the theft of information on the other warheads at all.

http://www.senate.gov/~thompson/wen-ho.html 8/6/99 Senator Fred Thompson and Joseph Lieberman "... The DOE completed its administrative inquiry on May 28, 1996. It was forwarded to the FBI, which began its own full-scale field investigation at the direction of the FBI's "Agent A." The FBI already knew of Wen-Ho Lee, having investigated him not only for the abovementioned 1982-84 matter, but also on account of a separate FBI investigative lead This third FBI look at Wen-Ho Lee -- this time in connection the W-88 matter -- began only two days after DOE's inquiry report had arrived. The Bureau's Albuquerque Division field office took primary responsibility for the investigation, assigning it principally to "Agent D" and his supervisor, "Agent C."

http://www.senate.gov/~thompson/wen-ho.html 8/6/99 Senator Fred Thompson and Joseph Lieberman "... Not long into its investigation, FBI officials at the Albuquerque field office decided that it would be important to gain access to Wen-Ho Lee's office computer. In November 1996, the FBI's "Agent D" contacted Terry Craig, team leader for counterintelligence at LANL, regarding the possibility of searching Lee's computer. ..... To begin with, their discussions -- and subsequent dealings between FBI and LANL -- showed a remarkable degree of confusion between the idea of computer "search" and computer "monitoring."...Though he had apparently failed to ask Craig for information directly relevant to a full computer "search," "Agent D" advised FBI headquarters that he would provide the Bureau's National Security Law Unit (NSLU) with any documentation he received from LANL in this regard. This documentation, it was hoped, would permit the FBI to determine whether it had the authority to monitor the suspect's activities without having to apply for a search or electronic surveillance warrant under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) In response to this request, Craig consulted certain officials at Los Alamos and then advised "Agent D" that while LANL was implementing a new computer training program that involved signing a waiver form, employees at LANL's weapons division -- including Wen-Ho Lee -- had yet to complete this process. Craig also provided "Agent D" with three documents describing current computer policies at LANL...While it was apparently true that employees of the weapons division had not signed this "training waiver," Craig's inquiries around the laboratory failed to disclose that Wen-Ho Lee (and other LANL employees) had in fact signed different consent-to-monitoring waivers with regard to both classified and unclassified laboratory computers in April 1995 Craig, however, never looked further into this matter, and did not learn of the 1995 waiver until 1999 Craig's failure to supply the FBI with accurate information was critical. It is still unclear whether Lee's computer waiver actually would have permitted the FBI searches desired This said, however, if the Bureau had known of the 1995 waiver, it might have been possible to access Lee's computer much earlier. In turn, had investigators thus discovered the classified file transfers that Lee was actually undertaking with his computer, there would likely have been little dispute with the Department of Justice over the existence of probable cause for FISA surveillance of the Lees.

http://www.senate.gov/~thompson/wen-ho.html 8/6/99 Senator Fred Thompson and Joseph Lieberman "... To make matters worse, Craig had also assumed, on the basis of his own experience elsewhere in the laboratory, that LANL's weapons division did not employ security "banners" to persons using unclassified e-mail accounts. He did not discuss this issue with anyone at this division, however, and thus failed to learn that some computers -- apparently including the one Wen-Ho Lee used -- did indeed display such banners. Thus unaware of the facts, Craig informed "Agent D" that no banners were used in the division. (Craig did not discover this mistake until 1999. It is uncertain precisely what banners were used in the weapons division at that time, but had Craig pursued this matter further, it would at least have been possible for NSLU to make an informed decision on whether or not FISA authority was required.

http://www.senate.gov/~thompson/wen-ho.html 8/6/99 Senator Fred Thompson and Joseph Lieberman "... Given that the FBI believed that probable cause existed to mount FISA surveillance against Wen-Ho Lee and viewed this espionage case as an extremely important national security matter -- one important enough to provoke the first-ever appeal of a FISA denial within the Justice Department -- it is remarkable that Director Freeh at no point contacted the Attorney General about this issue. As even OIPR's then-Acting Counsel agreed, the vast "significance of the case" was not "lost on any of us." Apart from Lewis' effort to raise the matter with the Attorney General, however, the Bureau was apparently content to take "no" for an answer. It is equally remarkable that no Justice Department official apparently felt that this matter deserved any serious personal attention from the Attorney General.

http://www.senate.gov/~thompson/wen-ho.html 8/6/99 Senator Fred Thompson and Joseph Lieberman "...After Seikaly's decision, the FBI was frustrated that "the FISA review had been turned down again" and discouraged about its ability to mount electronic surveillance against the Lees. Indeed, FBI Director Louis Freeh met with Deputy Energy Secretary Elizabeth Moler to tell her that there was no longer any investigatory reason to keep Lee in place at LANL, and that DOE should feel free to remove him in order to protect against further disclosures of classified information. In October 1997, Freeh delivered the same message to Energy Secretary Frederico Peña that he had given to Moler.

http://www.senate.gov/~thompson/wen-ho.html 8/6/99 Senator Fred Thompson and Joseph Lieberman "...Freeh took this step out of concern that DOE might be using the investigation as an excuse to avoid making necessary security reforms at the nation's nuclear laboratories. An FBI report in April 1997 had identified major security problems at the laboratories, but thus far DOE had taken no action. DOE officials, in fact, were apparently resisting these changes, ostensibly on the ground that they did not wish to interfere with the FBI's "ongoing investigation" by alerting Lee in some fashion. Freeh's messages to senior DOE leadership were intended to help remove the grounds for this excuse and help prompt the Energy Department to take action, though the recent report on security at the DOE laboratories suggests that Freeh's hopes were apparently in vain.

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette 8/8/99 Meredith Oakley "...Surmising that things are a mess today within the Department of Justice doesn't require any great stretch of the imagination. Things were a mess there from the get-go. Or should one say Waco? If we could reconstitute the combined genius of Peter Sellers and Blake Edwards, we still couldn't do justice--excuse the pun--to the Clinton administration's Justice Department under Janet Reno in one feature-length film. It would require more sequels than Rocky, more installments than "The Perils of Pauline." Take, for instance, the latest episode involving Chinese pilfering of America's nuclear secrets. According to a report just released by the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee, the U.S. government's three-year inquiry into Chinese espionage at several U.S. nuclear weapons labs was a major fiasco, flawed from beginning to end. "The government's investigation was not a comedy of errors, but a tragedy of errors," said the ever-eloquent Joe Lieberman, Democratic senator from Connecticut.....But here's the kicker: Los Alamos officials told the FBI back in November 1996 that Lee had signed a privacy waiver allowing his computer to be searched, which would have avoided all the squabbling. For its part, the FBI says it did not search the computer until recently because it did not learn until this year that the waiver had been signed...."

AP 8/8/99 "...The White House hasn't decided whether to veto a proposal that would create a semiautonomous agency to protect nuclear weapons programs and laboratories, Chief of Staff John Podesta said Sunday. "We're looking at it right now,'' Podesta said on NBC's "Meet the Press.'' The Clinton administration has some problems with the proposal, he said, "but whether it rises to the level that we're going to have to veto'' remains unclear..... The National Nuclear Security Administration would remain under the energy secretary but largely would control its own budget. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson has said he would go along with a new agency but only one that does not sap the authority of the energy secretary and place security and counterintelligence responsibilities outside the agency...."

Washington Post 8/7/99 Walter Pincus "...Energy Secretary Bill Richardson has "a lot of problems" with a congressional plan to create a separately administered agency inside his department to tighten security at the plants and laboratories that design, build and maintain nuclear weapons, a spokeswoman said yesterday....The plan to establish a National Nuclear Security Administration was reached Thursday night by a Republican-dominated conference committee set up to hammer out differences between the House and Senate versions of the $289 billion defense authorization bill. .... The plan approved this week by the House-Senate conference committee, however, differs significantly from the Senate plan that Richardson endorsed. In particular, Anderson said, it deprives the energy secretary of direct authority over employees of the new agency. The secretary could exercise control through the agency's administrator, who would also be an undersecretary of energy and thus a subordinate. But under the current wording of the legislation, the secretary "can't fire, hire or directly order" employees of the new agency, Anderson said...."

New York Times 8/7/99 James Risen "... The Energy Department has sought a delay in the Government's decision on seeking an indictment against a former Los Alamos scientist in connection with the mishandling of nuclear secrets, officials said on Friday. More time is needed, the officials added, to decide whether to release highly classified information for use as evidence. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson has the legal authority to decide what classified information can be released. Officials said Richardson was waiting for a recommendation from the department's new security czar, a former Air Force General, Eugene Habiger. Habiger has to weigh whether the risks of exposing additional classified nuclear data outweigh the need for the prosecution of the scientist, Wen Ho Lee. Justice Department officials are mulling how to handle the case, and some reportedly believe that the case is too weak to prosecute...."

Associated Press 8/12/99 H. Josef Hebert "...Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, citing a ``total breakdown in the system,'' recommended disciplinary action Thursday against a senior official and two other employees of the Los Alamos nuclear laboratory because of failures in the China espionage investigation. Richardson did not identify the three but said that their ``responsibilities were clear and that they failed to meet their responsibilities'' in the investigation of alleged spying by a Los Alamos scientist, Wen Ho Lee

Inside The Pentagon 8/12/99 "...Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said yesterday that he will "most likely recommend" that President Clinton veto the fiscal year 2000 defense authorization bill over language establishing a semi-autonomous agency in the Energy Department to manage the U.S. nuclear weapons complex. Richardson, speaking at a breakfast meeting with reporters, said the proposed reorganization could undermine his authority as secretary and may prove to be unconstitutional. The defense bill, reported out of conference last week, creates a National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) to oversee nuclear weapons-related activities, and establishes a new under secretary of nuclear security position within DOE to serve as NNSA administrator. "The mission of the administration would be to enhance . . . national security through the military application of nuclear energy and to reduce global danger from weapons of mass destruction, and to promote international nuclear safety," according to the conference report. "The administrator [shall] ensure that all operations and activities of the administration are consistent with the principles of environmental protection and the safety and health of the public and the administration's workforce," it adds. The legislation also establishes three deputy administrator positions within the NNSA: one for defense programs, another for defense nuclear nonproliferation and the last for naval reactors. The NNSA will have its own general counsel's office and a full compliment of administrative staff, including public affairs, legislative affairs and liaison officers to work with other federal agencies...."

Investors Business Daily 8/15/99 "...ENERGY SECRETARY BILL RICHARDSON has promised since spring that heads would roll over the espionage at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. But when the results of a department probe came in, all he did was urge "appropriate action" be taken against three employees. Doesn't he get it? When the extent of the treachery at Los Alamos was revealed, Richardson talked tough. It was a welcome change in tone from the White House's blase evasions and excuses. He kept up the tough talk even as his department's inspector general began to look into the matter. The IG identified three lab employees who fouled up, and still Richardson sounded tough. "There was a total breakdown in the system, and there's plenty of blame to go around." So, does Richardson take tough action? Hardly..... To us, jail time sounds appropriate. Or if nothing criminal or treasonous can be probed, dismissal sounds appropriate. If these three workers are responsible in part for the hemorrhage of our nuclear secrets tough punishment is called for. But all Richardson can find the political courage to do is call for "appropriate" action. It's true that Richardson can't fire the three workers. They are paid by the University of California, which runs the lab. But his word would carry a lot of weight with the UC authorities. If Richardson said, "Fire them" they would get the ax.

Yet, Richardson has hidden behind the pabulum of appropriateness. By doing so, he has given officials a pass to do what bureaucrats do best: obfuscate the issues and duck responsibility. And by all appearances, the bureaucrats are going to take that pass. "I will consider what actions to take, consistent with the policies and procedures of the laboratory and the University of California," said lab director John Browne...."

Washington Post 8/13/99 Vernon Loeb "...Attempting to bring an end to the Chinese espionage scandal that has plagued his department for months, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson yesterday recommended disciplinary action against two former counterintelligence officials and the former director of Los Alamos National Laboratory. Richardson's announcement came as he released the findings of a sharply critical report by the Department of Energy's own inspector general and issued a statement acknowledging that both "political and career management" failed to pay enough attention to security. As a result of "systemic" management lapses, the inspector general concluded, the government's chief espionage suspect, former Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee, was able to keep his security clearance and sensitive work assignment for at least 18 months longer than necessary..... Richardson declined to name the three officials he recommended for disciplinary action and said it would be up to Los Alamos Director John C. Browne to determine the proper punishment, which could range from letters of reprimand to dismissal. But officials familiar with Richardson's recommendation identified the three as Sig Hecker, who served as Los Alamos's director from January 1986 to October 1997 and still works as a senior scientist at the facility; Robert S. Vrooman, the lab's former counterintelligence chief, who is now retired and serves as a part-time consultant to a lab subcontractor; and Terry Craig, a former counterintelligence team leader now working in another section of the lab...... Senior Energy Department officials also said that former Energy Secretary Federico Pena and two former deputy secretaries, Elizabeth A. Moler and Victor H. Reis, might have been subject to disciplinary action for failing to adequately pursue espionage allegations, if they were still employed by the department. However, the Energy Department's inspector general, Gregory Friedman, determined that there was insufficient evidence to substantiate a charge by Notra Trulock, the DOE counterintelligence official who targeted Lee as a suspect, that Moler tried to prevent Trulock from testifying to Congress...."

Capitil Hill Blue 8/13/99 Dan Thomasson "...If one were inclined to believe in government conspiracies, the failure of the FBI and the Justice Department to properly investigate the loss of U.S. nuclear technology to the Chinese would be an excellent candidate. As Fred Thompson, R-Tenn., chairman of the Senate Government Affairs Committee, put it, there is enough blame to go around in the "poor handling" of what may turn out to be the biggest case of successful espionage ever perpetrated against this country. Not just a "comedy of errors but a tragedy of errors," echoed Sen. Joseph Lieberman, D-Conn., the committee's ranking minority member, all the while shaking off the conspiracy theory. In fact, the bungling among the FBI, the Justice Department and the Energy Department may be every bit as historic in its dimensions as the stealing of our nuclear warhead design. Oddly, in 13 hours of closed-door hearings, the committee failed to find out why all the ineptitude by the nation's key counterintelligence agency and its bosses. How, then, one must ask, could there be such monumental missteps unless they were deliberate? Two possibilities come to mind...."

National Review 8/9/99 Ramesh Ponnuru and John J. Miller "...He keeps switching, and switching, and switching. First Energy Secretary Bill Richardson opposed a Senate proposal to reorganize create a semi-autonomous National Nuclear Security Administration within DoE. Then, when passageappeared imminent, he endorsed the plan. It passed the Senate with only one "no" vote. Now he wants President Clinton to veto it. By all accounts, Richardson is desperate to become Al Gore's running mate next year, and perhaps he thinks this series of flip-flops makes him look vice-presidential. But he's letting his own personal ambitions get in the way of his better judgment. Richardson doesn't want to share the credit for reforming the Energy Department with anybody, least of all Congressional Republicans...."

FoxNews 8/10/99 Reuters "...The Clinton administration will soon announce what disciplinary actions will be taken against government workers for lax security at the nation's nuclear weapons laboratories, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said Monday. The Energy Department lab at Los Alamos, New Mexico, is at the center of the alleged Chinese spying campaign that a congressional report said allowed China to obtain secret information on U.S. nuclear warheads and the neutron bomb. China has denied any wrongdoing. Richardson said he has received an internal report on who should be held responsible for lax security at Los Alamos and a handful of other DOE nuclear laboratories. The Energy Department's independent inspector general prepared the report at the request of Richardson after he questioned an earlier report that placed most of the blame for security problems on lab employees rather than on officials at the department's Washington headquarters...."

USIA 8/13/99 "...According to Richardson, the Inspector General's review: -- Could not establish with any certainty allegations that DOE official(s) knowingly improperly delayed, prohibited or interfered with briefings about potential espionage at the labs to Congress or former U.S. Secretary of Transportation Federico Pena. -- Determined that a counterintelligence official at the Los Alamos lab deprived the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) of relevant and potentially vital information concerning possible espionage at the laboratory by not carrying out an adequate search of lab records. -- Identified, but did not assign blame to, 19 officials at the DOE and the Los Alamos lab who bear responsibility in varying degrees for failures in management, leadership or follow through regarding the investigation at the lab. Richardson called for the Director of the Los Alamos National Laboratory to take disciplinary actions against a senior lab official, a former counterintelligence official (now working at the lab in a different capacity), and the counterintelligence official who failed to conduct a diligent records search for the FBI...."

Fox News 8/17/99 AP Chris Roberts "….A list ranking journalists, politicians and others as for, against or neutral in their statements about alleged espionage at Los Alamos National Laboratory was never used, the lab's suspended public relations director said Tuesday. The list was created by a well-meaning but naive junior employee, said Sylvia J. Brucchi, who is on paid leave while the incident is being investigated. Los Alamos has been under scrutiny after accusations that nuclear secrets were leaked from the lab. She said the project was only to compile a list of people who were making public statements on the alleged espionage and who were knowledgeable on the subject. Officials from the Energy Department and the University of California, which has operated the lab under a government contract since 1943, condemned any effort to create a list of people for and against the lab….."

Albuquerque Journal 8/17/99 Ian Hoffman "…Buffeted by accusations of leaking nuclear secrets, public-affairs staff at Los Alamos National Laboratory began sizing up influential government officials, media and academics as "pro," "con" or "neutral" to the laboratory. In what might be called the strange bedfellows list, the lab rated environmentalists, reporters for the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times and most Senate Republicans as "cons": Their statements on China's supposed nuclear thefts were bad for LANL and its image. Former Los Alamos scientist Peter Lee, who pleaded guilty in 1997 to divulging classified information to China, is "neutral" in the lab's database: He didn't say anything negative about the lab and espionage. Other "neutrals": Mark Holscher, defense attorney for FBI spy suspect Wen Ho Lee, and U.S. Attorney John J. Kelly, who is leading the Wen Ho Lee investigation. Lab public affairs director Sylvia Brucchi said she ordered subordinates to create the "key players" database in March to help lab executives navigate an increasingly complicated political landscape. Brucchi last week defended the database as a useful opinion-tracking device and said she knew nothing of the pro-con designations. On Friday, following Albuquerque Journal inquiries on the database, Brucchi was suspended with pay, pending an investigation of the creation of the database and her use of extensive outside public-relations consultants. …"

NewsEdge Reuters 8/17/99 "…Robert Vrooman also told the Washington Post he does not believe China obtained top-secret information about U.S. nuclear warheads from Los Alamos or any other laboratory belonging to the U.S. Energy Department. Any such stolen data, he said, could have come from documents distributed to ``hundreds of locations throughout the U.S. government'' as well as to private contractors. While ``details of this investigation are still classified,'' he added, ``it can be said at this time that Mr. Lee's ethnicity was a major factor.'' Vrooman is the first high-ranking participant in the investigation to state that Lee's ethnic background played a key role in his emergence as the government's prime suspect….. In a separate statement faxed to the Post, Vrooman said Lee was identified by the Energy Department's Office of Counterintelligence ``as the prime suspect based on, at best, cursory investigation'' of only Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Vrooman said he had personally counted 13 Caucasians at Los Alamos who were ``left out of the investigation'' although like Lee, they had visited China and met officials at a physics institute there…."
The Wall Street Journal 8/19/99 Edward Jay Epstein "…According to Mr. Vrooman, Mr. Lee, who had worked at Los Alamos for 20 years, was only one of many scientists who had access to the design information of the miniature W-88 nuclear warhead--in fact, the data were "distributed to 548 different addresses at the Defense Department, Energy Department, various defense firms, the armed services and even the National Guard." Mr. Lee, it seems, was targeted for investigation because of his Chinese ethnicity. But the full story does not end there. There are, to begin with, reasons to doubt Mr. Vrooman, who was fired because of his putative mishandling of security at Los Alamos and so has an interest in exonerating Mr. Lee. A search of Mr. Lee's computer files found that he had downloaded classified design information on his own backup computer, evidence of a security lapse (for which he was fired), though not of actual espionage. …"

New York Post 8/20/99 Editorial "…


As if the furor over the Clintonites' botched probe of Chinese nuclear espionage weren't explosive enough, a retired Energy Department intelligence official has tossed an incendiary - and dubious - new accusation into the mix. Robert Vrooman, former chief of counterintelligence at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, charged that Wen Ho Lee, the Los Alamos physicist named as the investigation's top suspect, was specifically targeted because he is a Chinese-American. "Mr. Lee's ethnicity was a major factor" in the investigation, Vrooman told The Washington Post. Worse, he charged, there's not "a shred of evidence" that Lee committed espionage. It would be easier to take Vrooman's claims seriously if he didn't have such a big ax to grind. But his allegations first came about only following public reports that Energy Secretary Bill Richardson has recommended he be disciplined for "irresponsible" actions. Specifically, Energy officials say, Vrooman failed to limit Lee's access to secret information after he became an espionage suspect. Inexplicably, Lee was even allowed to keep his job in the top-secret X division - where nuclear weapons are designed. "An independent investigation clearly showed that [Vrooman] did not act responsibly in his position," said Deputy Secretary T.J. Glauthier. "He failed to carry out actions that would have limited the suspect'saccess to classified information." Vrooman obviously knew how politically charged his accusations are - which makes them all the more irresponsible if, as we strongly suspect, they turn out to be untrue…."

 

Reuters 8/20/99 "…A physicist suspected of passing nuclear secrets to China is talking with U.S. Justice Department officials in an effort to avoid prosecution, the scientist's attorney said Friday. Wen Ho Lee was fired in March from Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, the center of the U.S. government nuclear weapons research, for security violations and is suspected of giving classified nuclear information to China. The scientist has not been charged with any crime and U.S. officials have said espionage charges are unlikely because of a lack of evidence to convict him. But other charges are possible…."

Newsweek 8/22/99 Newsire "…Internal Security chief John Dion has urged his superiors at the Justice Department not to proceed with a case of mishandling information against Wen Ho Lee, the Los Alamos scientist suspected of leaking nuclear secrets to China, sources tell Newsweek in the current issue. Lee was fired from his job but investigators have already conceded that they don't have the evidence to convict Lee as a spy. Agents instead are focusing on Lee's admission that he transferred nuclear codes onto his unsecured office computer. Insiders say that even if they decide against indicting Lee, prosecutors may never admit they went too far in publicly fingering him, reports Washington Correspondent Daniel Klaidman in the August 30 issue (on newsstands Monday, August 23)…."

3/11/99 "FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 11, 1999 …. Secretary Richardson Names New Chairman,

Appoints Two New Members to Secretary of Energy Advisory Board Energy Secretary Bill Richardson named a new Secretary of Energy Advisory Board (SEAB) Chairman and appointed two leaders from industry and government to serve as new members, bringing the board's total membership to thirty-five. The SEAB's newly named chairman is board member Andrew Athy, a partner in the Washington D.C. law firm of O'Neill, Athy and Casey. Mr. Athy previously served as counsel to the U.S. House of Representative Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power and was appointed to SEAB by Secretary Richardson in December 1998. Joining Mr. Athy and the other SEAB members are Gilberto OcaÒas, Chief Executive Officer of OcaÒas Group in Austin, Texas, a firm specializing in Hispanic public affairs and business development; and the Honorable Mike Espy, former Secretary of Agriculture and U.S. Representative, who practices law in the Jackson, Mississippi, firm of Butler, Snow, O'Mara, Stevens and Canada, PLLC…."

NY Times 8/26/99 James Bamford "…The investigation into China's suspected theft of top nuclear secrets has become so partisan that it's hard to know where the politics ends and the truth begins…. In recent days, critics of the way the Wen Ho Lee case has been handled have compared his case with that of John Deutch, the former Director of Central Intelligence. Mr. Deutch was stripped of his security clearance last week because, as head of the C.I.A., he transferred more than a dozen top-secret "codeword" documents, dealing with topics from international terrorism to Iraq, to an unclassified computer at his home. The C.I.A. had reportedly been aware of this for two and a half years but took action only recently. …. There was a time when espionage wasn't such a partisan game. The Reagan years were the worst on record for espionage. Jonathan Pollard walked out of Navy intelligence offices with suitcases stuffed with documents for his Israeli controllers. Aldrich Ames met with Soviet intelligence officials and sold out his country. Members of the Walker family were taking secret documents and codes off Navy ships by the boxload. Larry Wu-Tai Chin, a C.I.A. analyst, passed secrets to the Chinese Government. What was missing in those cases, however, was heated Congressional rhetoric, hearings to investigate dark conspiracies, shrill accusations of Reagan Administration bungling and leaks of damning information by committee staffers. Spies were caught, prosecuted and sent to jail. Period. It was more or less understood that espionage happens in every Administration. In that same era, hundreds of people were investigated for security violations. None, however, were thrown into the political circus as quickly and cruelly as Mr. Lee was. …"

Christian Science Monitor 8/26/99 Peter Grier "…Washington's China spy case is falling apart faster than John Le Carré can say, "Who swallowed that microfilm dot?" Charges that Los Alamos National Laboratory scientist Wen Ho Lee passed US nuclear data to Beijing have roiled the national security establishment for months. They've caused Congress to approve a sweeping rejiggering of A-bomb development, and may force bureaucrats to reinspect 600 million pages of declassified material for inadvertent leakage of secrets. But now top officials say publicly that Mr. Lee became a security target largely because he is Chinese-American, and that they do not have a shred of direct evidence against him. The official who led the first probe into Lee's activities has resigned, and the whole affair is calling into question lawmaker assertions that China has penetrated the highest levels of US security and may be America's new cold-war adversary. "If Lee is not charged, then we are really back to square one," says Jonathan Pollack, a Rand Corp. senior adviser for international policy. …Then it turned out that a recent CIA director, John Deutch, had kept secret material on his unsecured home computer. In the atmosphere of the Lee case, the government had no choice but to strip Mr. Deutch of his security clearance. "The national security part of the community in Washington has been utterly convulsed by [the Lee case] for over a year," says John Pike, a Federation for American Scientists intelligence expert. But wait. If the respected former head of the CIA did some of the same things Lee did, does that mean...? Oops. Never mind. So far Lee has not been charged with espionage, and it now appears he never will be. A recent bipartisan report by the Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs concluded that if nothing else, the Lee probe was hopelessly bungled. Investigators didn't bother to look at other suspects and fought over things such as whether to search Lee's computer…."

Associated Press 8/27/99 Michelle Locke "…The intent is to catch spies. But the effect of polygraph tests at Energy Department weapons labs will be to scare off new researchers and demoralize those who remain, scientists there say. "I don't think you'll find very many people who are in favor of polygraphing,'' says Betty Gunther, who works in the computing division of Los Alamos in New Mexico. "What we're talking about is destroying a very good research institution.'' The tests are proposed as part of a new spy-fighting initiative prompted by allegations that a Los Alamos scientist passed nuclear secrets to China. The investigation, which found the man had downloaded thousands of files of super-secret codes into his unclassified computer, brought accusations the labs aren't doing a good job of keeping nuclear secrets…."

Sacramento Bee 8/22/99 AP "…The Department of Energy has proposed moving some of its nuclear weapons projects from Los Alamos National Laboratory to other nuclear labs and test sites around the nation, including the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. The proposed moves are necessary because the workload at Los Alamos was "exhausting" weapons designers responsible for maintaining the nation's nuclear stockpile, said Energy Department Deputy Assistant Secretary Gil Weigand, who is in charge of weapons research and development. The proposal, dubbed "Mega Strategy," would balance the workload at the department's major research and testing sites and increase the number of experienced U.S. weapons workers, Weigand said. A decision on the proposal is expected by February. The plan moves some work from Los Alamos to the Nevada Test Site, shifts a large amount of plutonium and weapons maintenance to the Livermore lab and creates a new research complex at Sandia National Laboratories outside Albuquerque…."

National Review - Washington Bulletin 8/25/99 Ramesh Ponnuru "…The backlash to the Chinese spy scandal is in full flower. The former head of counterintelligence at Los Alamos, Robert S. Vrooman, told the Washington Post that not only is suspected spy Wen Ho Lee innocent, he is the victim of racist scapegoating, the high-tech equivalent of Driving While Black: Call it Researching While Asian. (Bear in mind that Vrooman, who has been humiliated, has an interest in minimizing security lapses that occurred on his watch.) Meanwhile, Notra Trulock, the Energy Department security official who a few months ago was a hero for breaking the spy scandal, has resigned from the department, accused of targeting Lee unfairly. The idea that China spied at all-instead of picking up information from the Internet or other open sources-is now in doubt, making the whole fuss seem a creation of the fevered imagination of a few paranoid white males. But not so fast. Wen Ho Lee may or may not be guilty of passing to the Chinese design information for the W-88, America's most advanced warhead. But there was a legitimate reason to suspect him. In the early 1980s, Wen Ho Lee reportedly told another U.S. scientist under suspicion for giving the Chinese neutron-bomb secrets, "I can help you-I can tell who ratted on you"; he failed to inform security officials of his various contacts with PRC scientists; he agreed to meet with an FBI agent posing as a Chinese official; he failed two lie-detector tests; and, of course, he downloaded massive amounts of material from a classified to an unclassified computer. His defenders seem to want affirmative action for security risks: Minorities can meet lower security standards to ensure that no minority pressure group will ever have reason to cry "racism." (Foreign intelligence agencies will no doubt be impressed by our commitment to diversity.) …"

National Review Online 8/25/99 Kenneth R Timmerman "…1. What do you make of Notra Trulock's sudden departure? I don't know whether Trulock was forced out or not. But at the very least, it's clear he felt he had no mandate to continue actively pursuing foreign-intelligence penetration of the Department of Energy and our nuclear-weapons establishments. 2. Several people from within the energy department have now charged Trulock with singling out Wen Ho Lee because he is Asian. What do you make of the charge? And, is giving extra scrutiny to Chinese-Americans legitimate? The charge is both unfortunate, and inevitable. Mr. Lee first attracted the attention of DoE counterintelligence in the mid-1980s, when he accompanied his wife on a speaking engagement to Communist China. By all accounts, the Chinese were more interested in his knowledge of U.S. nuclear weapons, than in his wife. Any normal employee in a government national-security agency would have accepted such an invitation with great trepidation and reserve. It was common knowledge that Chinese intelligence was actively seeking to recruit people with access to U.S. weapons secrets from what they called the "overseas Chinese" community. Despite this, as far as we know from the published accounts, Mr. Lee did not submit a report on his contacts in China. So by his own actions, he invited scrutiny by DoE counter-intelligence. If I had been in Mr. Lee's position, I never would have gone to China, in the same way that many American Jews, working in senior government positions, refuse to deal with Middle Eastern issues in their official capacities. Is that fair? No. But they aren't bus drivers, either. We are talking about people who are handling our most dangerous and valuable secrets. They must be like Caesar's wife, free from even the suspicion of blame…."

http://www.jewishworldreview.com 8/26/99 Joseph Perkins "…WHEN WORLD WAR II began six decades ago, with Germany's invasion of Poland on Sept. 1, 1939, the biggest fear of this nation's political and military leadership was that Adolf Hitler would successfully build an atomic bomb. Indeed, refugee physicists here in the United States warned that German scientists had discovered nuclear fission in 1938 and that it was theoretically possible to harness that power in the form of the most destructive weapon in the history of the world. Recognizing this grave threat to U.S. national security -- even though this country would not meet the German Wehrmacht in battle until two years after the start of World War II -- President Franklin Roosevelt approved the creation of the Manhattan Project. It was the most ambitious scientific-military undertaking in American history. To start from scratch and build an atomic weapon. And to build it before the Germans, who had a three-year head start….. Now, here we are, 60 years later, and the United States finds itself facing a threat to its national security that may eventually become as grave as the Third Reich's race to develop the atomic bomb. That is: the growing number of authoritarian regimes -- including China, North Korea, Iraq and Iran -- that either have or are actively developing nuclear missiles with which they can threaten America's strategic allies, if not this country itself. Much as the United States created the Manhattan Project to concentrate the efforts of this nation's best scientific minds to build the first atomic bomb, there needs to be a similar project, here and now, to develop and deploy a missile-defense system that can protect the United States and its allies -- including Taiwan, Japan and Israel -- from nuclear missile attack. Our allies agree…."

San Jose Mercury News 9/3/99 Dan Stober "...In the wake of a spy scandal, the federal government has moved to tighten security at the nations' nuclear weapons laboratories. But physicists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory are grumbling that the new rules make them feel like criminals, prompting some to leave or seriously consider it. ....New security measures include widespread lie detector tests, computer restrictions, e-mail monitoring, even mandatory reporting of sex with certain foreigners -- it's practically taken the fun out of designing hydrogen bombs. One veteran weapons designer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, physicist Tom Thomson, says he may quit -- after 30 years -- rather than submit to a polygraph examination. ``I don't know if I'll agree or not,'' he said. ``I may just leave.'' ....Security has even been tightened around the most sensitive facility at Livermore -- the ``Superblock'' where radioactive plutonium is kept. The complex, surrounded by high fences topped with razor-sharp wire and constantly monitored by cameras and other devices, has now been assigned a 24-hour SWAT unit. .....Badges must be worn at all times. A yellow badge indicates a low-level security clearance. The outside truck driver delivering bottled water may have a yellow badge. The more common blue badge comes with a top-secret ``Q Clearance.'' A blue badge, however, does not automatically grant access to hydrogen bomb secrets. ...... "

AP 9/1/99 "…The U.S. Department of Energy is asking its employees to kiss and tell. A notice sent out last month requires 67,000 workers cleared to handle defense secrets to tell counterintelligence officers about any romantic or sexual liaisons with people from countries thought to be developing nuclear weapons, Those countries include all former Soviet republics, China, Israel, India, North Korea, Cuba and Taiwan. Employees also are expected to report friendships or professional relationships with any foreign national if they spend "private time'' together - even on the Internet - or if either one shares information about their personal or professional lives…."

FOXNEWS.COM 8/29/99 Mary Gabriel "…The man who headed the initial probe into China's alleged theft of U.S. nuclear secrets said Sunday he was blocked from briefing Congress by a Clinton administration appointee out of partisan political concerns. "One of the senior officials told me directly that the reason that she did not allow me to brief the (Capitol) Hill on this case was that congressional Republicans...were only interested in hurting the president on his China policy," former Energy Department investigator Notra Trulock told Fox News Sunday. Trulock said he understood from Deputy Secretary of Energy Elizabeth Moler, who has since resigned, that she wanted to keep him from talking with Florida Republican Rep. Porter Goss, chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence…… Trulock said the "last straw" was an Energy Department Inspector General's report that found no conclusive evidence to support this charge that higher-ups sought to block his investigation. "For the inspector general to trivialize such serious and important issues and do what essentially became a he said/she said...I think it's time to leave at that point," he said….."

Washington Post 8/31/99 Walter Pincus Vernon Loeb "…It may be weeks or even months before the director of Los Alamos National Laboratory takes disciplinary action against three employees for their alleged mishandling of a suspected Chinese spy, officials said yesterday. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson recommended two weeks ago that the laboratory impose some form of discipline, which could range from mandatory counseling to dismissal, against key employees involved in the case of Wen Ho Lee. But because the lab is managed by the University of California, officials said, personnel actions must follow the university's procedures, which include a fact-finding process, rights of appeal and possible arbitration. Los Alamos Lab Director John C. Browne said that he and University of California President Richard Atkinson decided last week to establish a panel of three "highly respected and independent" national security experts "to advise us on what actions would be appropriate." …."

FOX NEWSWIRE 8/31/99 "….The director of an installation intended to house the world's most powerful lasers has resigned amid questions about his education, The New York Times reported today. E. Michael Campbell, associate director for lasers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, Calif., left his job Friday after a series of anonymous faxes to his bosses revealed he does not have a Ph.D., the Times reported. One of the world's leading authorities on ultra-high-energy lasers, Campbell remains an employee on leave from the lab, a spokesman said…."

ABC AP 9/3/99 "…The Energy Department admitted to serious problems Friday in a program to build the world's largest laser, including mismanagement that will add hundreds of millions of dollars to its original $1.2 billion price tag. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, who said he was assured the project was on target as recently as June, ordered an overhaul of the program at the Lawrence Livermore weapons laboratory and an investigation into why the cost overruns were not revealed earlier. The massive laser, which was supposed to have been completed by 2003, is being built at the California research lab in a project to monitor and maintain America's nuclear warheads without testing nuclear bombs. Energy Department officials said mismanagement may cause the project's cost to soar as much as $350 million above the originally projected $1.2 billion and delay completion by as much as two years. Richardson's announcement came a week after an embarrassing disclosure about the former project director's academic credentials. Edward Campbell resigned after it became known that he had for years implied he held a doctorate in electrical engineering when he never in fact completed his Ph.D. dissertation at Princeton University. …."

CNN.com 9/12/99 "....Labor advocates are using the prospect of a government-imposed lie detector test to build support for the formation of a union at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. About 7,300 employees work at the nuclear weapons lab, which is run by the University of California. The U.S. Department of Energy is holding public hearings through October 4 on its proposal to subject Los Alamos lab workers to polygraph tests. .... "Almost all employees have already had a 'Q' clearance (and) investigation done on them, (but) they still don't trust us," said Gilbert Merriman, who rates procedures at the lab where scientist Wen Ho Lee was fired for transferring secret nuclear codes to an unclassified computer system. "And I think it's primarily Congress that doesn't trust us." A "Q" clearance is the highest rating relating to nuclear weapons. ...."

Nando Media 9/15/99 Josef Hebert AP "….Attempting to set an example, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson answered a series of espionage-related questions in a polygraph test this week - and said nuclear weapons scientists should do the same without worry. Richardson took the test Tuesday. While no results were provided, he presumably passed…."

AP 9/10/99 H Josef Hebert "...Three officials of the Los Alamos nuclear weapons lab, including a former director, were disciplined Friday for their part in the China espionage investigation. The University of California which runs the lab and announced the disciplinary actions, refused to identify the three individuals, citing privacy concerns. Two sources, knowledgeable about the cases, said the former lab director, Siegfried ``Sig'' Hecker, was given a letter of reprimand, but no additional action was taken against him. Hecker, who headed the lab from 1986 to 1997, continues as a Los Alamos lab researcher. The most severe action was taken against Terry Craig, a former counterintelligence officer at the lab, who received a letter of reprimand, had his salary frozen and unspecified restrictions placed on his job. Robert Vrooman, a former chief of the lab's counterintelligence office, who has been a part-time consultant to the lab since his retirement, was barred from doing consulting services for at least five years. ....."

Charlotte Observer 9/12/99 "...In the midst of all this, perhaps it is useful to recap what is not seriously in dispute. Senior government officials in the mid-'90s believed that espionage had taken place and that security in general was awful in the American nuclear program. They said so quite pointedly. The White House was officially advised in 1996 that a spy could still be working in the nuclear program. A briefing prepared for Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, when he took over in the summer of 1998, said security lapses were widespread and critical. ``There has been an alarming increase of instances where nuclear weapons design, intelligence and other national defense information has been either compromised or placed at risk,'' the briefing said. The Department of Energy requested 19 FBI investigations that year alone. Attempts at investigation and remedy were characterized by bungling and foot-dragging on a grand scale. The Energy Department and the FBI worked at cross-purposes. A man seriously believed to be a spy was left in place for years at the Los Alamos weapons lab. Widespread possibilities for information leaks elsewhere were ignored. And the White House was in good rhythm with all of it. The president didn't formally order reforms until February 1998 -- nearly two years after the first warning. Even then, another nine months passed before the Department of Energy began to respond. Crucial points in this are not obscured by the weakness of the case against one suspect, or by mixed possibilities for the source of Chinese success in nuclear weaponry: Serious security breaches in the American nuclear weapons program are not only credible, they are likely. The evidence is everywhere. The government was spectacularly inept in pinpointing problems and mounting remedy. The known record suggests no improvement to this day. The mess here is genuine, and alarming. ..."

AP 9/19/99 "….Despite finding marked improvements in security at the government's three nuclear weapons labs, investigators still were able to penetrate some sensitive areas of the labs' computer systems, according to a top-level Energy Department review. However, a team of security experts was unable to penetrate the top-secret computer network used for nuclear weapon design during the intense security review conducted over the summer. But one official said at two of the labs Sandia and Lawrence Livermore the security specialists were able obtain from the outside ''sensitive'' though not secret information on unclassified computer systems ''without a whole lot of difficulty.'' …..The security review at the Los Alamos lab in New Mexico was conducted in two stages in August, officials said. It found the lab had beefed up computer security, improved protection of classified material, improved accountability of nuclear materials, added additional guards and put in additional alarm sensors. More important, said a veteran DOE security official familiar with the review, there was ''a marked change in attitude'' about security among Los Alamos scientists and managers…."

http://www.newsday.com/ap/rnmpwh17.htm AP 9/22/99 H Josef Hebert "...Responding to months of uproar over allegations of Chinese espionage, Congress today overwhelmingly agreed to create a new nuclear weapons agency in the most dramatic reorganization of the Energy Department in 22 years. The reorganization was included in a widely popular $288.9 billion defense bill that includes a military pay raise and a 4.4 percent across-the-board increase in Pentagon spending, including more money for military housing and hardware. The Senate approved the defense measure 93-5, following House approval of the bill last week by a likewise veto-proof 375-45 vote. The administration has indicated a possible veto because of concerns about the nuclear weapons agency, but lawmakers said a veto would be politically difficult given the defense bill's overwhelming bipartisan support. While some Democrats voiced concern about the new weapons agency within the Energy Department, they said the defense measure was too important to have it sidetracked on the reorganization issue. Although the new agency will not be totally independent, the legislation insulates the department's nuclear weapons programs and consolidate authority over the government's three nuclear weapons labs. The reorganization marks the most far reaching fallout yet to months of controversy about lax security at the Energy Department and the alleged theft by China of nuclear warhead secrets from U.S. weapons labs, dating back 20 years. Supporters of the measure say the new National Nuclear Security Administration within the department would streamline control over nuclear weapons programs and provide increased accountability for security and counterintelligence efforts....."

Congressional Record, http://thomas.loc.gov 9/22/99 Rep Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) "....For those who do not understand, we have laboratories where we have developed these weapons of mass destruction that can either be used to protect freedom and preserve the peace or if that technology gets into the hands of monsters like Hitler or the militaristic Japanese or the Communist Chinese regime in Beijing, those weapons would threaten humankind. Because China has to be told that they are our strategic partner, we had a policy of letting these scientists from the People's Republic of China do their experiments in our laboratories, in our weapons laboratories. Over and over again, we have found during this investigation, we have found that those people who sounded the alarm, career civil servants, civil service people, were repressed by this administration, were told to shut up or get out. We have had hearings on this and documented this over and over again. Now, what has this resulted in? What are we talking about here? We are talking about missile technology, and we are talking about technology that has permitted them to build weapons that can kill millions of Americans, probably the size of that little desk down there, that little table right there, put into a Chinese rocket that can kill millions of Americans, or millions of Tibetans or millions of Japanese or millions of South Koreans...... We will pay dearly for this nonsense. Our young people will face a threat that they should not have to face because of this indefensible, totally indefensible policy....."

AFP 9/24/99 "….The Federal Bureau of Investigation is studying "new things" in the allegations of Chinese theft of US nuclear secrets, Republican Senator Orrin Hatch said Friday. Hatch spoke to reporters as he left a meeting with Attorney General Janet Reno and FBI director Louis Freeh. "They indicated there are some new things that they were looking into," said the Utah senator. But Hatch, who chairs the Senate's Judiciary Committee, refused to reveal what new items the FBI was looking at. On Wednesday the FBI said it was expanding its investigation into allegations of Chinese spying on American nuclear laboratories. According to reports, FBI investigators were ordered to widen their probe after the Justice Department and FBI director Louis Freeh determined that the scope of their investigation was too narrow. Asked by reporters what justified expanding the investigation, Hatch said he had no details. "I haven't heard any adequate explanation to this day ... except that Director Freeh said that he felt that they needed to do what they were doing," he said. Reno said Thursday that she thought there might be new evidence in the case. "I think there may have been new facts brought to the attention of the FBI," she said….."

Associated Press 9/27/99 Michael Sniffen ".....The Justice Department hired its first chief science adviser Monday -- Donald Prosnitz, a physicist from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California. Prosnitz will be on a two-year detail as the department's chief science and technology adviser from the lab where he was the chief scientist for the Nonproliferation, Arms Control and International Security Directorate. ``This newly created post enables us to consolidate the responsibility for technology policy in one position,'' Attorney General Janet Reno said. Prosnitz is the second physicist drawn from the Energy Department's nuclear weapons laboratories to take a top Justice Department job. By coincidence, the laboratories currently are a focus of an FBI investigation into whether China stole secrets about U.S. nuclear warheads in recent years. In October 1997, Donald M. Kerr Jr., a physicist-engineer who spent six years as chief of the government's Los Alamos National Laboratory, where nuclear weapons were designed, became assistant FBI director in charge of the bureau's crime laboratory. In a brief interview, Prosnitz said ``familiarity with the government'' might be the reason Justice has twice turned to the national laboratories for a scientist. ....."

CNSNews.com 10/5/99 Justin Torres "....President Bill Clinton signed a bill Tuesday that transfers responsibility for nuclear weapons from the Energy Department to a new nuclear agency, a step recommended by the Cox Committee in its report on Chinese espionage. The bill, which was passed by large margins in the House and Senate, creates the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), which will immediately take responsibility for American nuclear secrets from the Department of Energy. In a statement released to CNSNews.com, House Policy Committee spokesperson Paul Wilkinson called the signing of the bill "the most significant Cabinet department restructuring in two decades." ...."

New York Times 10/4/99 Michael Gordon Judith Miller ".....U.S. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson proposed that United States experts visit Novaya Zemlya islands in Northern Russia to conduct seismic experiments that would enhance the American ability to distinguish between a nuclear test and, say, an earthquake. The need for such measures was evident in August 1997, when the CIA informed the White House that the Russians might have conducted an underground test at Novaya Zemlya. After seismic experts challenged that assessment, the C.I.A. said that it was wrong and that the tremor was an undersea earthquake....."

AP 9/28/99 "....A 21-year FBI veteran with a background in counterintelligence will head the task force conducting the bureau's newly broadened investigation into the alleged Chinese theft of secrets about a sophisticated nuclear warhead. The FBI announced Tuesday that Stephen W. Dillard, currently head of its Jackson, Miss., office, has been selected as inspector in charge of the task force. The bureau said it is still deciding how many agents should be assigned to the probe of whether data about the miniature W-88 warhead and other weapons was taken from U.S. nuclear laboratories. Dillard, who has a law degree from Mississippi College School of Law, has served in the FBI's national security division at headquarters where he managed all foreign counterintelligence and counterespionage operations as chief of the global section. He also has served as assistant chief of the counterterrorism section, unit chief of the Russian section and unit chief of the counterterrorism section of that division......Attorney General Janet Reno said the expansion ``is in response to questions that have been raised in terms of new evidence. I think there may have been new facts brought to the attention of the FBI.'' ...... "

Capitol Hill Blue 9/28/99 "....Justice officials are quietly gloating that the FBI's being forced to return to square one on the investigation into alleged Chinese espionage at U.S. nuclear labs. They feel it proves that they were right all along when they kept telling the bureau they didn't have enough to proceed with a secret surveillance warrant on Wen Ho Lee. But if the FBI was able to diss Justice all over Capitol Hill, they weren't able to fool former Sen. Warren Rudman and his inquiry, which you may recall raised substantial questions about whether the FBI (and the Energy Department) had focused too early on Lee to the exclusion of other possibilities...... '

Society of Professional Scientists and Engineers 9/22/99 Drew Richardson PREPARED STATEMENT OF DREW C. RICHARDSON BEFORE THE DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY ON ITS PROPOSED RULE "POLYGRAPH EXAMINATION REGULATION" ....My name is Dr. Drew Richardson. I'm a Supervisory Special Agent of the FBI and a scientist in the FBI Laboratory..... I too, however, must express strong reservations about polygraph screening and recommend as strongly as I possibly can that you do not implement such a program. My concerns regarding polygraph screening run the gamut covering the lack of theoretical foundation, a lack of scientific control, a lack of validity as a diagnostic tool, to general concerns about the ethics of common practice to the potential lack of due process and fairness to polygraph examinees as it relates to the use of polygraph results. I believe that the assertions and opinions that I have just offered are in line with vast majority opinion of the relevant scientific community of psychophysiology. Furthermore I believe they parallel the formal and publicly stated positions of the American Medical Association and the American Psychological Association, both of which have gone on record as opposing the use of polygraph examinations for generalized screening purposes....."

Washington Post 10/16/99 Walter Pincus "….Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, under pressure from scientists and members of Congress, has sharply reduced the number of federal employees who will be required to take polygraph examinations about their handling of nuclear secrets. Instead of imposing the "lie detector" tests on more than 5,000 scientists and other employees at the nation's three nuclear weapons laboratories, the Department of Energy will limit the testing to several hundred people per lab, or a total of about 1,000 employees, DOE officials said. ….. They will be asked four questions during the tests: whether they have committed espionage, engaged in sabotage, made unauthorized disclosures of classified information or failed to report contact with people from sensitive countries….."

AP 10/20/99 Michelle Locke "....Investigators from the General Accounting Office arrived at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory on Monday and a team from the University of California, which manages the lab under contract to the Department of Energy, visited Tuesday and Wednesday...... The inquiries were prompted by the announcement last month that the project had run into trouble and could be $300 million over budget and two years late. That was an unpleasant surprise for officials who had been told in June that the project, part of the effort to test nuclear weapons through computer simulations, was in good shape. In response, the House Committee on Armed Services has asked the GAO to investigate....... The super laser, called the National Ignition Facility, NIF for short, is a football-stadium sized machine described as a cornerstone of efforts to test nuclear weapons for reliability without actually blowing anything up. With its 192 laser beams, the device will shoot a target the size of a BB to simulate temperatures and pressures similar to those inside a nuclear explosion or at the sun's core. ....."

Christian Science Monitor 10/17/99 James Thurman "....It seemed like a fairly straightforward idea: Make thousands of key scientists who run the Energy Department's top-secret nuclear labs take a lie-detector test to deter espionage. ..... But Energy Secretary Bill Richardson has decided to scale back a plan to give a polygraph test to as many as 12,000 DOE scientists and contractors starting in January. The sweeping measure was proposed by DOE counterintelligence as part of an effort to beef up security in the wake of the Chinese espionage scandal. Under the new plan, the Energy Department will instead test only a few hundred employees from three main labs...... ``They should have been doing it all along,'' believes a member of the intelligence community who submits to a polygraph every five years and asked that his name not be used. Proponents of the polygraph program and DOE counterintelligence experts dismiss concerns that tests would result in ruined careers. They point to similar screenings by the Department of Defense, which last year polygraphed almost 8,000 employees and contractors. According to Ed Curran, an FBI agent directing the DOE's current antispying plan, fewer than 400 Defense Department employees raised red flags. Of those, only eight could not clear the test. ....."

Washington Post 10/19/99 Walter Pincus "....Senate Republicans may attempt to cut off the salaries of top officials in the Department of Energy if the department undermines the establishment of a separate agency to run nuclear weapons programs, a Senate aide warned yesterday. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson is expected to face sharp questioning today from senators who contend that the Clinton administration is violating the spirit and possibly the letter of a law passed last month that set up the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). Republican legislators, who drafted the measure as a response to allegations that China had stolen nuclear secrets from U.S. weapons laboratories, say they intended to create a "separately organized agency" whose administrator would report to the secretary of energy but would have a high degree of autonomy....... On Oct. 5, President Clinton signed the fiscal 2000 Defense Authorization Act, which set up the agency. But at the same time, he directed Richardson to assume all the duties of the NNSA administrator, who has the title of undersecretary of energy for nuclear security. Richardson also was authorized to assign his top subordinates, such as the directors of security and counterintelligence at the DOE, to serve concurrently in parallel posts at the NNSA...."

AP 10/29/99 "…..A new government handbook allows administrators and law enforcement officials to analyze a school's vulnerability to violence and suggests technologies to deter problems. The guide, developed at the Energy Department's nuclear weapons laboratory in Sandia, N.M., will be available on the Internet beginning Monday. It provides practical tips on protecting buildings and grounds and gives advice on purchase of equipment for video surveillance, weapons detection, entry control and duress alarms….."

Philadelphia Inquirer 10/27/99 AP "….Scientists in "sensitive" countries such as China or Iran are to be barred from connecting with Energy Department computers that contain even unclassified information beneficial to a nuclear weapons programs, department officials said yesterday…..Some members of the House panel said they were skeptical of contentions by Energy Department officials of progress toward solving security problems at the labs. Some foreign scientists, including some from 25 "sensitive" countries, have been cleared to access unclassified computer systems at the Lawrence Livermore and Los Alamos national laboratories, said Brad Peterson, an Energy Department computer security expert. One scientist from Iran, for example, has access to the unclassified system at Los Alamos, Peterson said. The department does not disclose the 25 "sensitive" countries except for China, Iran and Russia….."

AP 10/26/99 "....Scientists in ``sensitive'' countries such as China or Iran are to be barred from connecting with Energy Department computers that contain even unclassified information beneficial to a nuclear weapons programs, department officials said Tuesday. ``We will have a policy out within the next five days that will greatly tighten foreign access'' to computers at the department's weapons laboratories, department security director Eugene Habiger told a House Commerce subcommittee. That policy is part of broad plans to tighten security at the nuclear weapons labs after security lapses allegedly allowed China to obtain nuclear secrets at a New Mexico lab.....Officials worry that a spy working inside a lab could put classified information on an unclassified network to be retrieved by foreign agents. The classified and unclassified networks are separate, department officials said, and the labs are working on ways to prevent people from moving classified information onto unclassified computers....."

Los Angeles Times - Business Section 10/25/99 Gary Chapman "…..The argument of the Clinton administration, which supported ratification, was that advanced supercomputers will allow "virtual testing" of nuclear warheads through computer simulations, replacing the need to conduct explosive underground nuclear tests. The U.S. Department of Energy is currently implementing the largest computer research and development program in the world, the Accelerated Strategic Computing Initiative (ASCI), to develop supercomputers and software programs that can conduct such virtual testing. This argument was a "huge mistake," said Dr. Chris Payne, a senior researcher at the National Resources Defense Council in Washington and a former nuclear weapons expert for the Senate. Payne called the administration's strategy for defending the treaty "a shot in the foot, a self-inflicted wound." …. Payne said President Clinton was convinced by advisors from the Department of Energy that advanced computer simulations must replace underground explosive testing to guarantee the reliability and safety of U.S. nuclear weapons. The problem is that the Department of Energy's radically ambitious ASCI program could take 10 to 15 years to complete. When DOE officials told senators about this timetable during the treaty ratification hearings, even the Republican moderates backed off supporting the treaty, Payne said. …."

Washington Post 12/2/99 Roberto Suro "….Plans to protect the nation's nuclear weapons laboratories from foreign espionage have fallen behind schedule because Congress failed to appropriate enough money for security measures, the Energy Department's new "security czar" said yesterday. Even if Congress now approves a request for emergency supplemental funding, plans to have a new security program fully in place by next September are off-track. "I'm not going to be able to do it," said retired Air Force Gen. Eugene E. Habiger, who heads the department's Office of Security and Emergency Operations. While he had expected to be hiring new personnel and buying new computer hardware by now, Habiger said, emergency money will not be available until April or May, meaning at least a six- or seven-month delay and even longer if Congress declines to provide the extra funds. …."

Washington Post 11/25/99 Vernon Loeb "…..Were it not for the uproar over Chinese nuclear espionage, Feng Gai might still be working at Los Alamos National Laboratory, burnishing his reputation as a budding star in the field of laser spectroscopy. Feng's work is not secret and has nothing to do with nuclear weapons; he studies the unfolding of human proteins, research critical to understanding Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases...."

Drudge Report 12/11/99 Matt Drudge "…. A day after indicting Los Alamos scientist Weh Ho Lee, senior government officials tell the NEW YORK TIMES on Sunday that Lee "jeopardized virtually every nuclear warhead in the American arsenal through unauthorized computer transfers of many of the country's most sensitive nuclear secrets." TIMES hotshot James Risen reports that much of the data is still missing -- vital information that Lee put on 10 portable computer disks from 1993 to 1997. Only 3 of these disks have so far been recovered! …..On the disks, Risen writes, "were thousands of pages of nuclear-related documents." In 1997 Lee placed on one disk the "'complete source code for the current version' of the government's most advanced primary weapon design, which is an atomic bomb that acts as the trigger to explode a hydrogen bomb." ….."

Matt Drudge 12/9/99 UPI "....Ten workers were injured on Wednesday in a chemical explosion at a Department of Energy nuclear weapons plant in Tennessee. Officials said seven workers were treated at the Oak Ridge Y-12 nuclear weapons plant and three workers were hospitalized. Authorities believe the explosion occurred after a volatile sodium- potassium mixture used as a cooling agent in the casting of nuclear warheads spilled into the bottom of a furnace. ...."

National Review 12/6/99 National Review ".....According to the National Review magazine, Trent Lott agreed with the Democrats to hold hearings for Clinton judicial nominees Richard Paez and Marsha Berzon by March 15. It's likely that they will be confirmed, given the habit of the GOP withering under Tom Daschle's race hustling. He also agreed to try to clear the other nominees and block any filibusters. For these concessions, the crafty Trent won the confirmation of a Mississippian to the Tennesee Valley Authority. ...."

Cox News Service 12/8/99 John Harmon ".....Agreeing to turn plowshares into swords, so to speak, the Tennessee Valley Authority directors Wednesday voted to approve a contract to manufacture a key component for atomic bombs at the Watts Bar nuclear power plant in southwest Tennessee. It will be the first time in U.S. history that a commercial reactor will be used to produce material for nuclear bombs. Tritium, the ``H'' in H-bombs, is ahydrogen isotope that greatly enhances the explosive power of bombs. TVA officials defended their agreement to provide the material to the U.S. Department of Energy as nothing more than a continuation of the federal utility's long history of assisting in U.S. defense projects....."

 

12/15/99 ABC Kathleene Parker "....People in this isolated town known for top-secret nuclear weapons work are angry after the arrest of nuclear scientist Wen Ho Lee. They're also scared. Their fear is based on a complicated web of the turbulent recent history of race and employee relations at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, on partisan politics and on a certain level of general distrust that is perhaps inevitable in a town that does nuclear weapons work. "It is frightening to me that people at the lab will not even give their names [to reporters] because they are afraid of retaliation," said Jo Starling, a former elementary school teacher, who, as a retiree, said she can speak out without fear of losing her livelihood....."

Washington Post 1/9/00 Bradley Graham "…..One of the nation's leading defense laboratories sold one of the world's 100 fastest computers at a bargain-basement price to a U.S. firm controlled by a Chinese citizen in late 1998. Ten months later, fearing that the supercomputer's parts could end up in China, lab officials hurriedly repurchased the machine at nearly three times the sale price. In a detailed report released last week, the Energy Department's inspector general faults officials at Sandia National Laboratories for ignoring risks to national security in the botched deal…... Those involved in the deal treated the computer as just another item of surplus equipment, neglected to apply controls required for potential exports and failed to review operating manuals and data storage disks sent with the computer, the report says. Soon after the sale, the report reveals, lab officials dismissed suspicions voiced by the computer's manufacturer, Intel Corp., that the buyer might transfer some parts to China. Only when press reports last summer called attention to the sale and highlighted the buyer's Chinese citizenship did Sandia officials reclaim the computer….."

Washington Post 1/24/2000 Walter Pincus "…. n numerous occasions in 1994, someone on the campus of the University of California at Los Angeles used Wen Ho Lee's password to enter Los Alamos National Laboratory's computer system via the Internet. ee's attorneys say it was his daughter, Alberta, playing a computer game. But federal prosecutors, who are continuing to investigate the log-ins, are not so sure. They are trying to determine whether someone else at UCLA may have gained access to the U.S. nuclear secrets that Lee transferred from the classified, highly secure computer network at Los Alamos to a less secure, unclassified network. Over a period of a year, Lee's password was used about 70 times to log in to the unclassified Los Alamos network from the UCLA campus. Investigators are examining whether it was merely a coincidence that three of those sessions took place within hours after Lee downloaded fresh batches of secrets to the unclassified computer….."

The Associated Press 1/19/2000 H Joseph Hebert "…..A six-month Energy Department investigation has found evidence of racial profiling and an ``atmosphere of distrust and suspicion'' toward Asian Americans at nuclear weapons labs because of the uproar over alleged Chinese espionage. But Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, vowing to stamp out such profiling, insisted Wednesday that Taiwan-born scientist Wen Ho Lee was never singled out or fired from his job at the Los Alamos National Laboratory because of his race. Nevertheless, Asian-American scientists widely believe they have been unfairly targeted because of their race since Lee's dismissal last March for security violations, according to a task force report on racial profiling in the department……"

New York Times 1/11/2000 James Glanz "….The laser, called the National Ignition Facility and known by the acronym NIF, would create conditions similar to those in nuclear weapons, allowing scientists to study the properties of such weapons without exploding them... Although the project was originally expected to cost $1.2 billion and to be finished by 2003, Mr. Richardson angrily announced in September that he had been informed of the overruns [to $4.5 billion] by laser officials. The project also suffered other setbacks, including the resignation of its director, E. Michael Campbell, amid questions about his academic credentials. The panel that Mr. Richardson appointed to investigate the problems, led by Dr. John McTague, a former vice president for technical affairs at the Ford Motor Company, released a draft report today. The panel, which is formally a subcommittee of the Secretary of Energy Advisory Board, said that "no one gets a passing grade on NIF management," criticizing an absence of clear lines of accountability at the Energy Department, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, where the laser is under construction, and elsewhere. The report reserved its most scathing language for Dr. Victor H. Reis, who until July was the assistant secretary of energy for defense programs…."

New York Times 1/20/2000 "…..Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said today that he would seek an additional $10 million to $15 million in next year's budget as part of an effort to recruit more scientists, particularly Asian-American ones, for the government's national laboratories. The proposed budget increase is part of a broader effort by Mr. Richardson to respond to charges of discrimination against Asian-American scientists at the nuclear weapons laboratories since the firing last March and subsequent arrest of Wen Ho Lee, a Taiwanese-born scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, in connection with the government's investigation of evidence that China had stolen American nuclear secrets. In addition, Mr. Richardson appointed a new ombudsman, Jeremy S. Wu, former deputy director for civil rights at the Department of Agriculture, to investigate accusations of discrimination throughout the Department of Energy…."

Sandia National Laboratories 1/27/2000 John German "….Sandia and other Department of Energy national laboratories will venture further into the truly tiny realm of atomic and molecular maneuvering following an announcement of a "National Nanotechnology Initiative" by President Clinton today from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena. The initiative would increase overall federal funding for nanoscience and nanotechnology R&D by 84 percent to $497 million beginning in fiscal year 2001. It would increase the funding at DOE from $58 million to $96 million in fiscal year 2001 (66 percent more than in 2000). Nanotechnology refers to the manipulation or self-assembly of individual atoms, molecules, or molecular clusters into structures with dimensions in the 1- to 100-nanometer range to create materials and devices with new or vastly different properties. For comparison, a human hair is about 10,000 nanometers thick. Scientists believe the ability to move and combine individual atoms and molecules will revolutionize the production of virtually every human-made object and usher in a new technology revolution at least as significant as the silicon revolution of the 20th century……"

AP 1/25/2000 "….A longtime employee of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory resigned Monday, saying his bosses retaliated against him for reporting safety violations. David Lappa, who worked at the lab for nearly 20 years, said he was suffering "an intolerable pattern of continued reprisal" since 1997, when he claimed the lab was trying to cover up safety problems in its plutonium facility. Lappa served as a consultant to the Department of Energy's investigation into safety problems at the facility in 1997. He felt some of the safety rules had been willfully violated, but the investigating panel disagreed with some of his points and did not include his opinions in its final report….. A U.S. Department of Labor investigation agreed in 1998 that Lappa had been treated unfairly, and the University of California, Lappa's employer, did not appeal the decision. Lappa was awarded compensatory damages and a pay increase….. "They have made it clear at the laboratory that he is not wanted," said attorney Tom Carpenter, who is working on Lappa's case with the Government Accountability Project. "He has been retaliated against repeatedly and his career has come to an end." ……"

AP 1/25/2000 H Josef Hebert "….The lax security that allowed a Los Alamos scientist to transfer and copy hundreds of nuclear weapons codes six years ago has been corrected, but computer security at the labs still is not 100 percent, the Energy Department's top security official said Tuesday. Eugene Habiger, the department's head of security, said he is ''99.5 percent confident'' that America's nuclear secrets are protected from cyber-espionage. ``But when it comes to computer stuff to say impossible is pretty tough,'' said Habiger at a news conference in which the department's top security and counterintelligence officials ticked off dozens of actions taken over the past year to improve protection of nuclear secrets at the weapons labs…… the review by Habiger's office said it is still possible - though increasingly difficult - to remove data from a classified computer system……"

THE WASHINGTON TIMES 3/9/00 Bill Gertz "…..As for military espionage, the United States continues to be the "main target" of spying by the intelligence arm of the People's Liberation Army, known as the Military Intelligence Department (MID). ……. Most military spying is done overtly by Chinese attaches posted to embassies and consulates. However, the report states that since 1987 the FBI and Customs service have stopped "at least two MID/ PLA clandestine collection operations in the United States." The attaches collect intelligence from "contacts" with U.S. officials and from publications as well. Chinese spies are continuing to obtain valuable intelligence from U.S. nuclear weapons laboratories, the report states……"PRC scientists, through mutually beneficial scientific exchange programs, gather [science and technology] information through U.S. national laboratories," the report said…….Cooperative exchange programs by the laboratories have created "new vulnerabilities" for U.S. high-technology information, the report states. "These vulnerabilities emphasize the significant difficulty the United States encounters in detecting PRC espionage activity," the report said…….. The secret and public versions of the report were sent last week to the House Intelligence Committee by CIA Director George Tenet and FBI Director Louis Freeh. The report was required under legislation passed by Congress……"

THE WASHINGTON TIMES 3/9/00 Bill Gertz "…..The report mentions the FBI case involving Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientist Peter H. Lee, who gave China secret information about the neutron bomb - which kills with radiation instead of a large blast -in 1985 and 1997. Lee pleaded guilty to espionage in 1997. Sen. Arlen Specter, Pennsylvania Republican, said during a Senate hearing Tuesday that Lee was sentenced only to community service and served no jail time despite his involvement in "a very egregious case involving the disclosure of nuclear secrets in 1985 and the disclosure of certain materials about detecting submarines in 1997." Mr. Freeh said during the hearing that the FBI and other security agencies view Chinese spying "with the utmost seriousness." Asked if the threat from Chinese spies is serious, Mr. Freeh said, "Yes, sir, absolutely."….."

The Albuquerque Tribune 3/25/00 Lawrence Spohn "……There could be some nuclear weapons fireworks next week in Albuquerque -- at least of the oral kind. Some of the nation's most prominent and provocative proponents and opponents of nuclear weaponry are coming to Albuquerque for the first Nuclear Security Decisionmakers Forum. Organizers intend to hold the event annually. "There should be some super-charged sessions," predicted forum organizer Edward Helminski. "We've got some pretty large egos involved." The theme of the four-day forum, which begins Monday at the Doubletree Hotel, is Restructuring Nuclear Weapons and Materials Programs, which includes the $1 billion-a-year efforts at New Mexico's Sandia and Los Alamos National Laboratory -- two of the nation's three nuclear weapons labs. The forum, which Helminski expects "to push the envelope" in the field, is sponsored by the Nuclear Weapons & Materials Monitor, a watchdog newsletter that monitors nuclear weapons programs. "Everybody is talking about the reorganization of the Department of Energy's nuclear weapons program, so it should be pretty lively," said Helminski, publisher of the sponsoring Monitor and president of Exchange/Monitor Publications in Washington, D.C. Congress last year ordered the Department of Energy, which operates Sandia, Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California, to reorganize its nuclear weapons program into a new semi-autonomous agency, the National Nuclear Security Agency. ......"

Dallas News 3/27/00 Washington Post "……The Energy Department plans to renovate more than 6,000 aging nuclear warheads over the next 15 years, almost double the number that the United States is allowed to deploy under the START II arms-reduction treaty, according to senior U.S. officials. The added warheads will make up what Energy Department officials refer to as the "inactive reserve," about 2,500 to 3,000 refurbished warheads that would give the United States the ability to match another country's sudden production of additional warheads. This plan, the legacy of a 6-year-old presidential decision, is coming under sharp criticism from arms-control proponents. They contend that it is unnecessary and possibly counterproductive to maintain an arsenal of 6,000 warheads at a time when President Clinton and other U.S. officials are attempting to persuade India, Pakistan, North Korea, China and Russia to halt or restrain their nuclear-weapons programs. ….."

New York Times 4/3/00 "……Heeding the objections of scientists, the Energy Department has dropped part of a plan to make foreign nationals at its laboratories wear badges stating the countries they are from. The plan, developed after a Taiwan-born American citizen, Wen Ho Lee, was accused of mishandling nuclear secrets, was to add the name of each scientist's country to the red badges they wear identifying them as foreign nationals, and to require them to wear the badges at all times. But American and foreign scientists had complained that in laboratories that did little or no classified work, the badges did not, as an Energy Department spokeswoman put it, "foster an atmosphere where open science can be done." Energy Secretary Bill Richardson announced on Friday during a visit here to Brookhaven National Laboratory, that at Brookhaven and other laboratories to be determined later, no one would have to wear a badge. "There is a difference between Brookhaven National Laboratory and classified labs like Los Alamos," Mr. Richardson said after attending a dedication ceremony at the Long Island laboratory for a new fuel cell, which produces electricity through a chemical reaction. "All employees have to wear badges in classified areas. The majority of work done at B.N.L. is unclassified, so they will not have to wear badges. Period." ......"

 

Albuquerque Journal 5/2/00 John Fleck "….. Christian employees at Sandia National Laboratories are denied the rights and privileges given to homosexual workers, a group of employees charged in a lawsuit filed in federal court Monday in Albuquerque. In 1995, Sandia granted official recognition to an employee group called the Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual Networking group, according to the lawsuit. But when a group calling itself Christians in the Workplace Networking Group asked for similar recognition, Sandia refused, according to the lawsuit. The Christian employee group is looking for the same recognition and treatment given to homosexual workers, said Stephen Crampton, an attorney with the American Family Association Center for Law and Policy in Tupelo, Miss. Crampton filed the suit in U.S. District Court on behalf of Sandia employees Michael F. Hall, William D. Morse and Mary A. Tang. Sandia spokesman Larry Perrine declined comment……"

AP 4/27/00 "…..The government has restored the security clearance of a nuclear scientist so he can assist his defense against charges he mishandled secrets at Los Alamos National Laboratory, his lawyer said Thursday. ……. Wen Ho Lee, 60, is also allowed to travel to secure work areas at the lab, which fired him last year, and at the federal courthouse in Albuquerque, said lawyer John Cline. He is transported in the custody of federal marshals, who keep him in leg restraints. ……"

 

Freeper ohmlaw 00 LOS ALAMOS FIRE UPDATE 5/24/00 "….. FIRE 95% CONTAINED....HOT SPOTS REMAIN.....47,650 ACRES BURNED....OVER 400 HOMES DESTROYED....LAB REMAINS CLOSED WHILE INVESTIGATORS SURVEY DAMAGE TO COMPUTER SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES....FIRE CLASSIFIED AS LARGEST AND MOST DESTRUCTIVE IN N.M. HISTORY...$11 MILLION TAB FOR FIREFIGHTERS TO DATE...."

Albuquerque Tribune 5/19/00 Lance Gay, Scripps Howard News Service "…..Beyond the anger, beyond the disaster, New Mexico lawmakers say the Cerro Grande Fire should change the way America thinks about its forest policies. A federal report on the Cerro Grande Fire leaves no question of government responsibility -- and no doubt that changes are needed in the decades-old policy of using controlled fires to control forest growth, Sen. Pete Domenici said. "It's just stunning what we heard," Domenici, an Albuquerque Republican, said after emerging from a briefing on an Interior Department report…….. "

Albuquerque Journal 5/16/00 Ian Hoffman "…… More than a quarter of Los Alamos National Laboratory's land has been burned so far by the Cerro Grande Fire, more than 20 times the amount reported earlier. Federal lawmakers have drafted an emergency $85 million request to get the lab running again and stem potential releases of contaminants from erosion of burned waste sites. Smoke from the burning lab so far contains levels of radioactivity as much as three times normal, scientists said. Yet federal, state and lab officials still believe the radioactive smoke is a natural emission from burning trees and is not evidence of a lab release. "So far, the evidence we have is there's no health risk," said Gregg Dempsey of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's radiation lab in Las Vegas, N.M. ……."

The National Weather Service 5/15/00 "…..NMZ002-003-161600-NEW MEXICO FIRE WEATHER ZONE 2 NORTHWEST MOUNTAINS/WESTERN CARSON-SANTA FE NF/SNZ-TAZ- 230 PM MDT MON MAY 15 2000 ***RED FLAG WARNING REMAINDER OF THIS AFTERNOON AND EARLY THIS EVENING ABOVE 7500 FEET*** ***RED FLAG WARNING ALL AREAS TUESDAY AND WEDNESDAY***
SOUTHWEST WINDS 20-30 MPH WITH GUSTS TO 40 MPH IN THE EARLY EVENING
DECREASING TO 5-15 MPH. STRONGEST WINDS ABOVE ABOUT 7500 FEET.
TUESDAY...BECOMING WINDY TO VERY WINDY WITH PARTLY CLOUDY SKIES.
SOUTHWEST WINDS 25-35 MPH WITH GUSTS AROUND 50 MPH IN THE AFTERNOON.
TEMPERATURES / CHC. WETTING RAIN
6000FT (ESPANOLA) M40S U80S / 0 0
7000FT (LOS ALAMOS) U40S U70S / 0 0
8000FT (CHAMA) M30S L70S / 0 0REGIONAL DATA...
NORTHWEST MTNS RELATIVE HUMIDITY......... 30 9
LAL....................... 1 1 HAINES INDEX.............. 5 6
10000FT WINDS............. SW40 SW50 ……"

Reuters 5/15/00 Zelie Pollon "…… A complex of historic buildings where scientists assembled the first atomic bomb during World War Two has been consumed by a wildfire that has raged for over a week, the Los Alamos National Laboratory said Monday. The complex where scientists worked on the top-secret Manhattan Project to build the bomb was destroyed in the fire except for one building, the laboratory said in a statement. Laboratory official Ternel Martinez said the destruction of the site was a severe blow to the 12,000 people who work at the U.S. nuclear weapons research facility in northern New Mexico. ….."

Associated Press 5/16/00 Richard Benke ".....More than 1,500 archaeological sites, including some dating back thousands of years, are believed to have been damaged by the Los Alamos fire. Eight U.S. Forest Service archaeologists are working side by side with fire crews, identifying sites of cultural significance as bulldozers attempt to dig firebreaks to prevent further damage. ......"We've come up with about 3,120 previously recorded archaeological sites. The oldest sites are in the archaic period, about 5500 B.C. to 600 A.D.," Elliott said Monday. "Probably we're looking at about half the sites in our extended search area that have had some damage." ....."

newsday.com/AP Wire 5/11/00 "…….The federal prosecutor who directed the high-profile investigation and prosecution of a fired Los Alamos National Laboratory scientist has been bumped from the job. Justice Department officials offered no explanation for the removal of Assistant U.S. Attorney Bob Gorence as lead prosecutor in the Wen Ho Lee case. …….. Patricia Chavez, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney's office in Albuquerque, told The New York Times that Justice had decided to send a prosecutor from Washington to direct the case, but Gorence would continue to be a ''key member of the team.'' ……."

The Associated Press 5/11/00 Barry Massey "……The National Park Service superintendent who ordered the brush-clearing fire that has raged out of control in Los Alamos was placed on leave Thursday while officials investigate. Roy Weaver, head of Bandelier National Monument for the past 10 years, has taken responsibility for ordering the "controlled" burn, saying he thought conditions had been just right for the park's regular practice of clearing brush. ……. However, a weather forecast warned of maximum potential for fire growth in the area. Weaver has not said publicly whether he saw the forecast. ….. "They obviously made the wrong decision based on the weather," said Rep. Tom Udall, whose district includes Los Alamos. "This just isn't the time to have any fire burning when you have such extreme winds and no humidity." ..."

AP 5/11/00 Chris Roberts "……A firestorm swept through the abandoned streets of Los Alamos today, burning as many as 400 homes, some down to their foundations, while frustrated firefighters braced for wind gusts up to 60 mph. All 11,000 people in Los Alamos were evacuated, and this morning another 7,000 fled suburban White Rock, where many evacuees had once sought safety. "We weren't ready down here. We were the refugee center for our friends," Kirk Christensen said as he and his wife loaded their camper and headed into a sea of cars crawling down the highway. They were headed for a friend's house in Santa Fe, to camp in the yard. ...... At the storied Los Alamos nuclear laboratory, for the first time shut down by fire, flames singed a research building but it did not ignite. Explosives and radioactive material were protected in fireproof facilities, lab officials said. "We can assure the country and New Mexico that our nuclear materials are safe," said Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, a former New Mexico congressman….."

U.S. News & World Report 5/22/00 David Whitman "……A "controlled burn" set by the National Park Service spun disastrously out of control, torching hundreds of homes in Los Alamos and White Rock, N.M. By week's end, the prescribed burn that started in the Bandelier National Monument had turned into an inferno, forcing the evacuation of more than 20,000 people, destroying 200 homes, and damaging hundreds of others. At one point, flames passed within 300 yards of a building at the Los Alamos National Laboratory where plutonium was stored, but fireproof facilities ensured that no radiation was released. Angry residents fumed that the National Park Service should have known better than to conduct a controlled burn when New Mexico's fierce spring winds tend to blow………… Ironically, prescribed burns are designed to reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfires…….... To curb the wildfire threat, Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt and other administration officials pushed for more prescribed burns. Since 1996, federal agencies have quietly set more than 30,000 fires, blackening over 7 million acres……."

Freeper ohmlaw 00 "…..This timeline was created from news releases issued by both the Los Alamos National Laboratory and The National Park Service. Events indicate that officials at Los Alamos conducted fire safety planning operations in the week prior to the fire that was started as a prescribed burn by National Park Service Officials. The events and fire warnings posted on each day below were obtained from the Los Alamos National Laboratory, The National Park Service and The Albuquerque Journal. Links have been provided under each fire warning to the corresponding DOE bulletin where it was published. This timeline has been corrected and updated since it's first posting and includes more specific details.

Monday, April 24, 2000 Fire danger: Very high

LOS ALAMOS OFFICIALS ANNOUNCE A PUBLIC MEETING PLANNED FOR WEDNESDAY, APRIL 26, TO DISCUSS WILDFIRE SAFETY ISSUES……..'Wildfire 2000: Los Alamos at Risk' meeting planned …..The Laboratory and the Interagency Wildfire Management Team will co-host a public meeting Wednesday in Fuller Lodge, Los Alamos, to provide citizens with an update on current fire conditions, cooperative efforts to mitigate the risk to the community, and safety procedures should a wildfire threaten the County.

Wednesday, April 26, 2000 Fire danger: Very high

GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS BRIEF THE PUBLIC ON EMERGENCY EVACUATION PLANS ON WEDNESDAY, APRIL 26, 2000....A FIRE MANAGEMENT OFFICER FROM BANDELIER PARTICIPATED ALONG WITH FOREST SERVICE AND LANL OFFICIALS...LOS ALAMOS ALSO REPORTS THAT A PRESCRIBED BURN IS PLANNED FOR THE NEARBY SANTA FE NATIONAL FOREST....THE PRESCRIBED BURN WAS FUNDED THROUGH A GRANT PROVIDED BY THE EPA...

Wildfire emergency evacuation plan in place

"Los Alamos Emergency Manager Robert Repass explains the county's emergency evacuation plan to a large audience at Wednesday evening's public meeting, "Wildfire 2000: Los Alamos at Risk," in Fuller Lodge. "Rather than trying to evacuate everyone all at once, the basic plan is to evacuate by sections or blocks," said Repass. "Spreading out the evacuation will keep traffic flowing smoother, and, we hope, keep things a little calmer in an otherwise chaotic situation. Keep in mind, it's pretty unlikely that we would have to evacuate the entire townsite." Emergency plans also include temporary location and sheltering in place, he added. Other presenters were Pat Valerio of ESH-20; Steve Coburn, Los Alamos County fire marshall; John Bruin, U.S. Forest Service, DOE Liaison; and Al King, area fire management officer, Bandelier National Monument. The meeting was co-sponsored by the Interagency Wildfire Management Team and the Laboratory's Public Interface Design Study team. Los Alamos County Councilor Robert Gibson moderated the event."

Prescribed burn planned for today

Staff from the Española Ranger District of the Santa Fe National Forest on Wednesday are scheduled to conduct a prescribed burn of some 3,700 acres of sagebrush, piñon and juniper to Sagrebrush Flats east of the White Rock Overlook……….. The scheduled work, which will depend on weather conditions, may cause smoke to be visible in White Rock and Los Alamos, and possibly areas east and north of the prescribed burn site, depending on wind conditions, said Kevin Joseph of the U.S. Forest Service……… A federal Environmental Protection Agency grant is being used to pay for the aerial ignition prescribed burn.

Thursday, April 27, 2000 Fire danger: Very high

THE NATIONAL LABORATORY AT LOS ALAMOS ORDERS A WILDFIRE EVACUATION DRILL FOR THE LABS SOUTHWESTERN AREAS... Wildfire evacuation drill sponsored by DX:

Hundreds of people on Thursday practiced leaving Technical Areas 8, 9, 14, 15, 22, 36, 39 and 40 in a safe, timely and orderly manner as part of a wildfire evacuation drill sponsored by the Dynamic Experimentation (DX) Division. Those Laboratory areas are located in forested areas near the Lab's southwestern boundary. Nearly 400 people work in those areas.......

Friday, April 28, 2000 Fire danger: Very high

Monday, May 1, 2000 Fire danger: Very high

Tuesday, May 2, 2000 Fire danger: Very high

Wednesday, May 3, 2000 Fire danger: Very high

Thursday, May 4, 2000 Fire danger: Very high

AT 12:20 PM, THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FAXES A SPECIAL FORECAST TO PARK SERVICE OFFICIALS WARNING OF FIRE DANGER SHORTLY BEFORE THE FIRE BEGINS AS A PRESCRIBED BURN BY THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE AT BANDELIER NATIONAL MONUMENT NEAR LOS ALAMOS...THE FIRE IS IGNITED AT 7:20 PM BY PARK SERVICE FIRE MANAGEMENT PERSONNEL...

http://www.albuquerquejournal.com/news/30286news05-12-00.htmSuperintendent Placed on Leave

"The National Weather Service's top fire forecaster in New Mexico drew the attention of Bandelier fire officials to a predicted Haines index of 6 the day of their burn. The index, running from 2 to a high of 6, reflects the dryness of air at 10,000 feet and the tendency of air to rise in the layer between 10,000 and 18,000 feet. The rising air can carry flames higher and launch embers outside the burn's planned boundary."….."I can tell you as a former fire behavior specialist that a Haines index of 5 or 6 used to scare the hell out of me," Clark said. "You're basically looking at blowout conditions."

Friday, May 5, 2000 Fire danger: Very high

PARK SERVICE FIREFIGHTERS LOSE CONTROL OF THE FIRE AROUND 3:30 AM AND CALL THE FOREST SERVICE FOR ASSISTANCE BUT ARE TOLD THEY WILL HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL 8:00 AM....THE BURN IS OFFICIALLY DECLARED A WILDFIRE BY THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE AT 10:00 AM....THE LAB REPORTS THE PARK SERVICE'S BELIEF THAT THE FIRE WILL BE CONTAINED AND NOT THREATEN THE LAB'S FACILITIES.....

Superintendent Placed on Leave Albuquerque Journal, (May 12)

"Yet when Cerro Grande burn boss Mike Powell called for them at 3:30 a.m., he says, the Forest Service decided to wait until a senior fire official arrived at 8 a.m. to approve the deployment."...... "A dispatch log at Santa Fe National Forest headquarters shows the crews were called out at 8 a.m. They arrived to find the fire on the verge of breaking loose."……

This is a special update at 4:00 p.m.

Cerro Grande Fire Update

Forest service slurry tankers have been successful in controlling the Cerro Grande Fire. At this time, the Park Service estimates that the fire will not move further east or closer to the Laboratory. NM4 remains open, although drivers are asked to proceed with caution due to possible smoke that may reduce visibility……

Monday, May 8, 2000 Fire danger: Extreme

THE NATIONAL PARK ASSIGNS A TYPE 'I' INCIDENT MANAGEMENT TEAM TO THE FIRE THAT HAS BURNED 550 ACRES OVER A FIVE DAY PERIOD NEAR LOS ALAMOS.......LOS ALAMOS NATIONAL LABORATORY CLOSES DUE TO THE FIRE.

NATIONAL PARK SERVICE MORNING REPORT Date: Mon, 8 May 2000 09:55:32 -0400

Exerpt from the Fire Activity Report:

NPS FiresBandelier NM (NM) - The Cerro Grande fire is burning in mixed conifers six miles southwest of Los Alamos. It has so far burned 550 acres and was reported to be 40% contained as of this morning. A Type I incident management team (Humphrey) has been assigned; 137 firefighters, four engines and two helicopters have been committed. The fire began as a prescribed burn, but escaped prescription and was declared a wildfire on May 5th. Several structures in the area are threatened, but protection efforts near the Los Alamos National Laboratory have been successful.

Source: The Los Alamos Monitor Lab to remain closed Tuesday

Officials at the Laboratory have decided to keep the Laboratory and DOE offices in Los Alamos closed through Tuesday, May 9. They are continuing to keep watch on the Cerro Grande fire near the Laboratory's western boundary…….. Firefighters plan to set a series of additional back fires on Tuesday south of the Pajarito Ski Area. These will intersect with back fires that already have been completed south of Camp May Road. Predicted wind patterns will send a large amount of smoke from the fires into the Laboratory's main administrative area, Technical Area 3, as well as into the town of Los Alamos. Laboratory and DOE officials cited as reasons for the closure poor visibility for motorists and workers, concern about potential health problems due to smoke and heavy traffic that might slow emergency crews……

Tuesday, May 9, 2000 Fire danger: Extreme

LOS ALAMOS NATIONAL LAB REMAINS CLOSED....THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE REPORTS THAT THE FIRE NOW THREATENS STRUCTURES INCLUDING THE LAB...THE FIRE CONTINUES TO INTENSIFY.....

Lab to remain closed today

Officials at the Laboratory have decided to keep the Laboratory and DOE offices in Los Alamos closed through Tuesday, May 9. They are continuing to keep watch on the Cerro Grande fire near the Laboratory's western boundary……… Firefighters plan to set a series of additional back fires on Tuesday south of the Pajarito Ski Area. These will intersect with back fires that already have been completed south of Camp May Road. Predicted wind patterns will send a large amount of smoke from the fires into the Laboratory's main administrative area, Technical Area 3, as well as into the town of Los Alamos….

NPS Morning Report - Tuesday, May 9, 2000

Date: Tue, 9 May 2000 08:08:53 -0400 NPS FiresBandelier NM (NM) - The Cerro Grande fire has burned 3,044 acres, up substantially from the 550 acres reported burned as of Sunday. The fire is burning in mixed conifers a mile southwest of Los Alamos. The fire is threatening the Los Alamos Laboratory, residences in the city of Los Alamos, gas pipelines, and endangered species. Some voluntary evacuations have taken place. Challenges to containment include heavy fuels, high winds, and long range spotting. A Type I incident management team (Humphrey) has been assigned; 327 firefighters (up from 137 on Sunday), six engines and two helicopters have been committed....

Wednesday, May 10, 2000 Fire danger: Extreme

1000 FIREFIGHTERS ACTIVE....18,000 ACRES BURNED.... National Park Service Morning Report NPS Fires

Bandelier NM (NM) - The Cerro Grande fire has now burned 3,700 acres and is 20% contained. Crews conducted burnout operations east of the Pajarito ski area yesterday. Inaccessible terrain, heavy fuels, high winds and spotting up to a quarter mile from fire lines are making containment difficult. The fire is threatening the Los Alamos Laboratory, residences in the city of Los Alamos, gas pipelines, old growth timber, watersheds, and endangered species. A Type I incident management team (Humphrey) has been assigned; 503 firefighters (up from 327 on Monday), 19 engines and seven helicopters have been committed……

Thursday, May 11, 2000

A SECOND TYPE 'I' INCIDENT MANAGEMENT TEAM IS ASSIGNED...WHILE THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE ESTIMATES THAT THE FIRE HAS BURNED ONLY 10,000 ACRES, OTHER REPORTS INDICATE A TOTAL FIRE COVERAGE OF NEAR 18,000 ACRES....CLINTON DECLARES A STATE OF EMERGENCY..FEMA EN ROUTE TO THE FIRE....

NPS Morning Report - Thursday, May 11, 2000

Date: Thu, 11 May 2000 09:22:05 -0400

Bandelier NM (NM) - The Cerro Grande fire has now burned 10,000 acres and has been only 5% contained. Despite intense efforts to secure firelines yesterday, southwest winds gusting to 50 mph pushed the fire into a subdivision, destroying numerous homes. Approximately 11,000 residents in the community of Los Alamos have been ordered to evacuate; the park is closed and visitors have been evacuated. Guaje and Garcia canyons have been closed, as have numerous area roads. All firefighters were pulled back to safety zones by early afternoon due to prevailing conditions and aircraft flights were halted because of winds. Efforts to protect structures are on-going. An area command team (Meuchel) and a second Type I incident management team (Bateman) have been ordered. A total of 611 firefighters, 28 engines and nine helicopters have been committed to the fire. The governor has declared a state of emergency, as has President Clinton; the director of FEMA is en route to the fire.

Washington Post 5/31/00 Walter Pincus "…..Senate confirmation of Gen. John A. Gordon as the first head of the new, semi-autonomous National Nuclear Security Administration inside the Energy Department has been held up by a Democrat angered by Republican legislation that cuts into Energy Secretary Bill Richardson's authority over the new agency. Sen. Richard H. Bryan (D-Nev.) put the hold on Gordon's nomination last Thursday even though he "has no reservations about the general," who has been serving as a deputy director of the CIA, said Bryan's press secretary, David Lemon. At issue are two provisions attached to the pending defense authorization bill that, Lemon said, "go back on an agreement reached last year about Richardson's authority over Gordon's agency."……. One prohibits Richardson from abolishing, altering, consolidating or discontinuing any unit or component inside the new nuclear weapons-building administration. The other denies pay to any Energy Department official who also serves as an official in the new agency. Richardson has employed such a dual-hatting arrangement for several key positions, much to the irritation of Republicans who want near autonomy for the National Nuclear Security Administration……"

New York Times 5/30/00 Douglas Jehl "…..The wildfire that swept through Los Alamos, N.M., this month is setting off alarms across the mountain West, where more and more Americans have chosen to live on the forest's edge. Experts say that housing shift has multiplied the danger that fires could kindle similar disasters elsewhere. And the shift is behind an urgent new Congressional quest for millions of dollars in emergency money to try to ease the risk. The blaze in Los Alamos, which consumed hundreds of homes, was a pre-emptive fire gone awry. But in communities like Ashland, Ore., and Missoula, Mont., whose populations have swelled with former city dwellers, the fire has served fresh notice that residents sit astride a volatile mix. ….."

Associated Press 5/26/00 "….. The head of fire management at the Los Alamos nuclear laboratory said he made an unprecedented plea to National Park Service officials not to start the prescribed burn that later raged out of control and destroyed hundreds of homes. The Santa Fe New Mexican reported Thursday that Gene Darling, the lab's fire management officer, said he met May 4 - the day the fire was set - with two members of the prescribed burn team at nearby Bandelier National Monument. ``I said, `You know I'd really prefer you didn't do this,''' Darling told the newspaper. ``It's the first time that I've ever said that, `I wish you wouldn't do it.''' Deputy lab security chief Gene Tucker backed up Darling's account of the meeting Thursday. ……."

New York Times 5/26/00 James Steringold "…….The Justice Department said today that it was sending George A. Stamboulidis, a respected prosecutor from Long Island who is experienced in organized crime and public corruption cases, to lead the prosecution of the scientist accused of illegally downloading highly sensitive nuclear weapons secrets at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Mr. Stamboulidis, who successfully prosecuted a number of organized crime figures in the Genovese, Colombo and Luchese crime families, will take over from Bob Gorence, an assistant United States attorney in Albuquerque, where the scientist, Wen Ho Lee, will be tried. …….. It is somewhat unusual for the government to switch lead prosecutors so late in a case……"

Fox News 5/26/00 "…… Prescribed fires have been banned from the National Park Service following a fire that devastated part of Los Alamos and burned nearly 48,000 acres in northern New Mexico this week, Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt said Friday. …… Babbitt made the announcement in releasing a report by an independent review board which he appointed. A copy of the report was released by the Interior Department in Washington, D.C., along with a letter written by Babbitt. "The board has verified and validated the findings of the investigation team, which revealed several serious failings in the National Park Service's use of prescribed burns in general and in the way this burn, in particular, was conducted," Babbitt said. ….."

Drudge Report 5/26/00 "… More than two weeks after a hellish New Mexico wildfire burned 400 homes and closed the Los Alamos National Laboratory, concern is mounting over whether erosion caused by the fire will unleash toxic and radiological contaminants into the Rio Grande….."

Nando Times 6/15/00 H Josef Hebert "……..Lawmakers who were briefed on the security lapse Wednesday said the investigation became more difficult because senior officials were not told for three weeks of the loss of two computer hard drives that held the materials. Further, there was no system in place requiring tracking of the missing devices when they were being used. ……… Senior Energy Department security and counterespionage experts told separate House and Senate hearings that 26 people - members of a nuclear emergency response team at Los Alamos - had access to the highly secure vault in which the two computer hard drives were kept. ……. But no system was in place that required individuals to sign out the devices, or even to track the use of the missing hard drives which were part of a "kit" to be used to dismantle a nuclear warhead in an emergency or terrorist act, lawmakers were told. ……. John Browne, the lab director, said the missing computer drives were classified as "secret" - not top secret - and therefore were not required under an easing of security standards in the early 1990s to be signed out when used or tracked. He said lab officials at the time opposed the change. ……. In his testimony Wednesday, Browne disclosed that "several" of the six Los Alamos managers, who were suspended with pay pending further investigations, had in fact known of the vanishing hard drives as early as May 7. ….."

Charleston (SC) Post and Courier 6/15/00 "……Once again the Energy Department, and the Clinton administration, face a huge and troubling unknown growing out of what appears to have been a cavalier attitude toward security throughout the government. …… Like the botched investigation of Los Alamos scientist and suspected Chinese agent Wen Ho Lee, like the State Department's inability to account for top-secret nuclear information stored on a missing laptop, and like a former CIA director's indiscreet use of a tappable home computer to prepare top secret memos, the disappearance of the Los Alamos computer drives may only reflect carelessness by government workers who should know better. Or it may reflect deliberate theft designed to help other nations acquire and use nuclear secrets in order to threaten the United States. ……. Either way, the mishandling and loss of classified material - for which no one has yet been prosecuted - is chilling. ……"

SOURCES(Tm) 6/15/00"……. Senior U.S. officials intimately familiar with the missing information, and who are involved in tracking terrorists who are actively known to be seeking weapons of mass destruction (WMD, specifically nuclear bombs), have told SOURCES that they are gravely concerned that the unaccounted-for secret materials would not only provide a terrorist with instructions on how to detonate virtually any atomic bomb they might be able to acquire, but also provide them with data necessary to prevent a nuclear bomb from being detected or disarmed. ……."

SOURCES(Tm) 6/15/00 12:00 AM "…….A former Navy nuclear design engineer who[was] also [invited to] work(ed) at Kirtland AFB on technologies related to ballistic missile defense, told SOURCES tonight he suspects the missing Nuclear Emergency Search Team (NEST) hard drives which contain vital nuclear weapons arming and deactivation details also contain details on neutron bombs which terrorists could possibly get their hands on. ….Key counterterrorist sources here would not confirm that neutron bomb data is also on the hard drives. One said only that, "yes, it makes sense that details about neutron bombs would also be available to NEST -- we have to be prepared for all possibilities." ……"

Los Angeles Times 6/16/00 Bob Drogin "…….-Using a high-stakes legal strategy called 'graymail,' lawyers for jailed nuclear engineer Wen Ho Lee are attempting to force the federal government to disclose hundreds of thousands of pages of nuclear weapon secrets in open court--or to drop the charges against him. John D. Cline, Lee's lawyer, adopted a similar bare-knuckled tactic when he participated in the successful defense of Oliver L. North, the White House aide at the heart of the Iran-Contra scandal. Prosecutors dropped three key charges against North in 1989 rather than expose highly sensitive records, though his case ultimately turned on other issues. But a judge dismissed all charges against another Iran-Contra figure, CIA operative Joseph F. Fernandez, after the government refused to reveal CIA secrets to a jury. ……"

Newsday.com 6/16/00 AP "…..President Clinton said Friday ''it's very important to get to the bottom'' of the loss of computer files containing nuclear weapons secrets from the Los Alamos weapons lab in New Mexico. ''I think what we ought to do is see the investigation through and see where the facts lead us,'' the president said. ''But we need to do what we can to find out what happened, whether there was a security breach and if so how we can change so it will never happen again.'' ……"

newsmax.com 6/16/00 USA Today "…..This week's news that two computer hard drives containing nuclear weapons secrets disappeared from the government's Los Alamos National Laboratory raises a host of questions. ...... Q: Are there other copies of the lost information? A: Yes. Los Alamos is one of several bases for NEST personnel; at least two other sites possess the same data. ...... Q: Is there any chance the hard drives could be in enemy hands? Can they be disabled? A: Energy and FBI officials say there is no evidence of espionage or theft, and it's more likely the drives were misplaced or accidentally destroyed. Officials say there is no mechanism to disable them without having them in hand. ......... Q: If the data got out, could they be used to build a weapon? A: Officials say that the data could be helpful, but they downplay the notion that the information could be used to ''reverse engineer'' a nuclear weapon, even if a would-be enemy had all the hard-to-get materials necessary to build one. They say the data would give a potential enemy useful insights on U.S. capabilities and procedures for disabling nuclear weapons -- information that could be used, for instance, to design a device that would be more difficult for NEST personnel to disarm. And one official familiar with the contents of the hard drives conceded that some of the information on the hard drives about homemade weapons might help someone intent on building one. ......

newsmax.com 6/16/00 USA Today "…..... They say 86 people have access to the vault where the drives were stored, and 26 could enter without an escort. Vaults at Los Alamos are protected by coded locks, palm-recognition devices and other security mechanisms. There are no cameras recording visitors to the vaults because transmissions can be intercepted. Moreover, there are no sign-out requirements for removing material. Lab officials say the NEST mission requires that personnel be able to use the vaults freely because data and equipment often need updating. Furthermore, team members must be able to grab what they need and bolt at a moment's notice. People with high-level security clearances needed to enter the vault are responsible for its contents...."

newsmax.com 6/16/00 USA Today "…..Q: Were rules or laws broken? A: Yes. Under Energy Department regulations, the disappearance of the drives should have been reported within eight hours. ….. Q: Will anyone be punished? …..Some lawmakers also have said that consideration should be given to ending the University of California's contract to run the lab, which also was the subject of a major security flap last year when one of its scientists was accused of mishandling classified data amid allegations of Chinese espionage……."

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette 6/16/00 Meredith Oakley "……To put it bluntly, the latest Los Alamos "mistake" stinks to high heaven, and I say that not because I particularly suspect espionage--I don't rule it out, though--but because of what it says about security, i.e. there ain't any. Forgive me, English teachers and gentlefolk everywhere, but that was my first reaction to the (belatedly) reported loss of computer files containing nuclear weapons secrets……… That's right. No one was required to sign for the devices should they have needed, or just desired, to check them out, and no one was required to track the path the devices followed between the checking out and the checking in. And we're talking about devices which reportedly contain the codes for deactivating both Russian and American nuclear warheads and the weapons stockpiled by American allies.......Equally boneheaded have been some of the reactions of Bryan's fellow Democrats, including that of Arkansas' junior senator, Blanche Lincoln, who suggested that the hard drives had just been "misplaced." How, pray tell, does one misplace material so vital to our national security? And if, by some stretch of the imagination, that's what happened, are we supposed to take comfort from knowing that a bunch of incompetents are in charge of our national security?......... Odd, isn't it, that no one seems to know which one of the 26 made off with the devices? If all were kosher, you'd think by now that someone would have 'fessed up. After all, incompetence is, at worst, only a firing offense. Espionage can get you incarcerated....... "

NATIONAL LABS

USA Today 6/5/00 Richard Willing "…..The Justice Department last year sought and received permission from a secret federal court to place a record 880 wiretaps in spying and terrorism investigations, department records show. An FBI official says the taps demonstrate increased interest in pursuing foreign agents operating on U.S. soil, including some linked to Mideast terrorist groups. ……..The administration sought 601 federal wiretaps in ordinary criminal investigations in 1999. ''The increase (in spying and terrorist wiretaps) is troubling because of the lack of accountability in the secret process,'' says author and electronic privacy advocate David Banisar. …..The court has approved more than 13,600 wiretap requests in 22 years and has rejected one. ..."

Associated Press 6/9/00 Chaka Ferguson "…….The park superintendent who approved a prescribed burn that blew out of control and rolled through Los Alamos last month said Friday he will retire in July because of the controversy. Roy Weaver, superintendent of Bandelier National Monument for nearly 10 years, has taken responsibility for the decision to start the burn on May 4. ..."

New York Times 6/6/00 James Sterngold "….In the second unusual shift in a major national security case in recent weeks, the federal judge who was to oversee the trial of a scientist accused of mishandling nuclear weapons secrets has suddenly announced that he was excusing himself from the case to assume senior status. The judge, John Edwards Conway of Federal District Court in Albuquerque, was scheduled to preside over the trial of Wen Ho Lee, a Los Alamos National Laboratory physicist who is accused of having illegally downloaded a mountain of highly sensitive nuclear secrets with the intention of passing them to a foreign power. …….. Mr. Conway said in a statement that he had decided to take what is known as senior status, a kind of semiretirement that allows him to reduce his case load and that he had chosen to drop out of the Lee case. An experienced judge, Mr. Conway was nominated to the bench in 1986. "I've been there and done that," Mr. Conway said of his decision. ….."

townhall.com 6/16/00 Oliver North "…..The "missing" multi-gigabyte computer drives contain detailed, highly secret, nuclear weapons data used by the super-sensitive Nuclear Emergency Search Team (NEST) -- an interagency contingent of military and civilian specialists who respond to nuclear accidents and nuclear-related terrorist threats. The data on the hard drives include all the information necessary to disarm all nuclear weapons worldwide. This is, of course, the same kind of data needed to arm or build a nuclear device. That's what's "missing." ………"

townhall.com 6/16/00 Oliver North "…..In 1994, over a year after taking office, more than 100 high-level White House staff members still had no security clearances because they never bothered to complete the paperwork for requisite background investigations. They were granted access to highly classified information anyway. ………… "

townhall.com 6/16/00 Oliver North "….. By 1996, White House security was so lax that shortly before fleeing the country, Democrat party fund-raiser Charlie Trie smuggled a foreign businessman into the White House using false identification. When the General Accounting Office reported that from January 1993 until June 1996 there were no procedures to control access to Sensitive Compartmented Information (a level of classification higher than Top Secret) within the executive office of the president, White House officials promised to "fix the problem." They didn't. ……."

townhall.com 6/16/00 Oliver North "….. At the State Department, foreign spies are standing in line to rip off America's secrets. In 1998, an unidentified individual posing as a reporter walked out of Secretary of State Maddy Albright's office suite with a stack of classified documents. Last year, the FBI caught a Russian Intelligence Service spy wearing headphones outside the State Department headquarters and discovered a device planted in a secure conference room inside the building. This January, a laptop computer containing top secret information vanished from the department's Bureau of Intelligence & Research. Secretary Albright said she was "outraged." ……"

townhall.com 6/16/00 Oliver North "….. Last year, FBI agent Michael Vatis told Congress that computer hackers broke into the Pentagon's classified computer systems and downloaded "vast quantities of data" containing "sensitive information about essential defense matters." The FBI suspected the Russian Intelligence Service. What did the Clinton-Gore administration do? They asked the Russians to help. Like O.J., the Russians are still looking for those who really did it. ……"

townhall.com 6/16/00 Oliver North "….. But even when the perpetrators of massive security violations are caught -- it hardly matters. According to the CIA's Inspector General, John Deutch, the Clinton-Gore CIA director from 1995-1996, routinely "placed national security information at risk" by processing a "large volume of highly classified information" on his unprotected home computer. After covering up the breach (and failing to notify the FBI as required by law) for more than 18 months, Deutch had his security clearances revoked and was given a letter of reprimand. ….."

Newsmax.com 6/15/00 John LeBoutillier "…….Among the slew of e-mail responses to yesterday's column, "Don't Believe in Coincidence," were two from entirely different ends of the political spectrum. The first e-mail purported to come - and I believe it did - from a scientist working at Los Alamos on top secret data at the time of the government-set "controlled burn." ……. This scientist claims he was working on top secret materials when security personnel came into his lab/workspace and told him he had to evacuate at once. He protested that he had to put the top secret material back into safe and secure storage. But the security people vetoed this and ordered him out of the building on the spot! ……. Sensing something was wrong, this scientist immediately went to a pay phone and called the Mike Savage radio program, got on the air and told Mike and his listeners what had just happened. This scientist wanted to make a "record" of what he viewed as incredibly flawed security arrangements at Los Alamos. …….Assuming this story to be true - and I have no reason to doubt a word of it - it is clear that this fire completely disrupted everyone working at the lab. ……The only question left unanswered is this: Why was the fire deliberately set? ……"

AP 6/15/00 Glen Johnson "…..The loss of computer files containing nuclear weapons secrets from a New Mexico lab is ''of great concern,'' George W. Bush said Thursday, supporting an investigation underway. He blamed the administration for ''another major security lapse.'' ...... ''I think it's very important that security be tight. This is an administration that promised no more security lapses and then there was another major security lapse,'' he added. ……."

Freeper Fitzcarraldo 6/15/00 "….PREDICTED BY CRYPT2K A MONTH AGO:
Officials at Los Alamos announced a "fire drill" on the same day & time the fire began..TIMELINE
Posted on 05/11/2000 19:31:12 PDT by ohmlaw 00
Federal disaster vehicles manned by outsiders enters the Lab...they are waved on because of the FEMA markings... selected buildings are targeted...teams rush through, stealing secret data, breaking things, dispersing accelerant and then setting buildings on fire...then, they put out the fires... When you can't trust your own government, your brain works day and night trying to explain their actions...trying to find ways to fight them...this overload of mental activity begins to crowd out n ormal processes...
22 Posted on 05/11/2000 20:46:00 PDT by crypt2k ……"

Freeper flanew 6/12/00 "……FYI- The ALBQ. region director FBI was replaced two weeks ago,the new director a specialist in anti-terrorism and biological warfare. ….."

UPI via NewsMax.com 6/15/00 "……UC President Richard C. Atkinson announced the start of the first of two independent reviews of management practices, structure and performance at the nation's top nuclear weapons research facility. The university manages the laboratory for the Department of Energy. "I expect these reviews to be incisive and expeditious," Atkinson said. ……… "The university is prepared to take all appropriate personnel action and to work with the laboratory in implementing corrective measures necessary to strengthen security at Los Alamos. This incident is unacceptable. We will not tolerate weaknesses in security at the national laboratories managed by the University of California." …… The management practices and performance review will be conducted by retired Rear Adm. Robert H. Wertheim and Francis Sullivan, director of the IDA Center for Computing Sciences in Bowie, Md. A second, more extensive review will be conducted by a five-member panel led by retired Rear Adm. Thomas A. Brooks, III, a former director of U.S. Naval Intelligence and currently the chairman of the Laboratory Security Panel of the UC President's Council on the national laboratories. The panel will more broadly examine laboratory management structure and practices. ……. The agents hope some employee will confess and point them to the missing computer tapes. The priority now is finding the tapes and then determining if there were any criminal laws broken. They want to make sure that the tapes are not copied. ……"

 

CBSNEWS 6/14/00 "…..Inside the committee hearing, senators were stunned to discover technicians don't even have to initial a sign-out sheet to remove secret material from vaults, even after last year's espionage scandal involving Wen Ho Lee. "I seriously wonder if we don't have better security at our Wal Mart stores than you do at Los Alamos lab," said Sen. Wayne Allard, R-Col. "At least when there is cash missing out of the cash register, you know about it immediately." ……. "The Energy Department has not heeded warnings about the dire need for security reforms," says GOP Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona, calling the latest incident "an unacceptable security breach." He maintained there is some evidence the devices may have been stolen, but provided no details. ......"

CBSNEWS 6/14/00 "…..GOP Congressman Fred Upton of Michigan, head of the House Commerce subcommittee probing the disappearance of the Los Alamos data, slammed security procedures at Los Alamos in an interview with CBS News. "These things were locked inside the vault," says Upton, "but in fact, the security was such that there was not a camera inside and anyone that got into that vault, in fact, could take things out." ……. The lab's director admits it's a problem, but claims security all around has gotten worse in recent years. "Throughout the government, secret data is no longer accounted for in this country, period," said John Browne, director of the lab. "I don't care what agency you go into, there is no accountability for secret data." ……."

CNN 6/14/00 Amy Paulson "….Energy Department officials outlined their security procedures Wednesday to a skeptical Senate panel looking into the unexplained absence of classified nuclear information from the Los Alamos National Laboratory. ……… "I am accountable for all the actions at my laboratory," said John Browne, the lab's director. "I am accountable for all of the policies and procedures of security systems, and I am accountable for the training of the individuals working in the lab. We can't excuse them if they ignore these policies, if they are negligent, we have to hold them accountable as well." …….. "I think he's not accountable," Shelby said in a reference to the absent Richardson. That sentiment was shared by other panel members, many of whom pointed to the empty chair that had been set aside for Richardson, rhetorically asking: "What could be more important than protecting the nation's security?" ……. Witnesses appearing before the joint Senate committee in addition to Browne were: Edward Curran, chief operating office of counter intelligence at DOE, and Gen. Eugene Habiger, director of the office of security and emergency operations at DOE. …….. The department maintains that no breach of security was detected, but the incident has raised new questions as to whether the Clinton Administration is directing adequate funding to protecting the nation's security. There were no log-in procedures in place in the vault, although access to the vault's interior required employees to provide a scan of an identification tag, as well as of his or her hand. ......"

CBN News 6/14/00 Mike Anthony "……..There's still no sign of those missing computer hard drives that contain U.S. nuclear secrets. The FBI will begin administering polygraph tests to workers who had access to the information at the Los Alamos weapons laboratory. Republicans are on the warpath and Energy Secretary Bill Richardson is in their sights. ……… Senate Armed Services chairman John Warner blames Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, saying, "You can point the finger at one man." That's after Richardson promised a few months ago absolutely no more security leaks at Energy. …….. "

Albuquerque Journal 6/15/00 Ian Hoffman "…..FBI agents hunting Los Alamos' lost nuclear secrets increasingly suspect the missing hard drives were taken by a still-unidentified lab employee who may have been unable or afraid to return them earlier, a ranking agent said Wednesday. …….. Agents are treating the Los Alamos case as an investigation of potential foreign espionage but only because the lost computer hard drives contain details of multiple nuclear weapons that would be valuable to anyone seeking to acquire or modernize nuclear arms. Elwell said agents haven't found any evidence of espionage. ……. FBI polygraphers on Wednesday began interrogating "more than five or six employees" of the 86 who had access to a vault in Los Alamos National Laboratory's X Division, where the two hard drives were stored. ……Polygraph tests were administered to employees suspected by agents of being "less than truthful" in earlier interviews, Elwell said. ….."

Albuquerque Journal 6/15/00 Ian Hoffman "…..Agents aren't close to establishing a crime, for example theft or negligent handling of classified or defense information. Instead the priority is finding the missing hard drives and being sure their contents weren't copied. They contain design data about the nuclear arsenals of the United States, France, China and Russia, plus easy-to-build, "improvised" nuclear bombs dreamed up by U.S. scientists trying to anticipate terrorist access to weapon engineering skills and materials, such as nuclear-reactor fuel rods that are less guarded than high-grade weapons plutonium. Agents hope some lab employee will confess to having the drives and direct the FBI to them. …... "

Albuquerque Journal 6/15/00 Ian Hoffman "…..When they found two of their total of six hard drives missing, the two team members grabbed the rest of their gear and left. Lab officials said the team members checked with their colleagues about the drives and did their own search from May 24 to May 31, when they finally notified lab security of the loss. …...."

Los Angeles Times 6/15/00 Bob Drogin Nick Anderson "…….Two computer hard drives missing from the Los Alamos National Laboratory contain highly sensitive data about the nuclear arsenals of France, China and Russia, in addition to secrets about American nuclear weapons, U.S. officials disclosed Wednesday. The information, classified as 'secret restricted data,' includes diagrams and assessments of how various foreign nuclear warheads and bombs may be designed, the officials said. The data include key military intelligence about what the United States knows about other nations' nuclear forces--and what it doesn't. Moreover, the missing hard drives are designed to be 'plug and play,' so they can be utilized in virtually any laptop computer without secret passwords or other sophisticated barriers, the officials said. ......"

Los Angeles Times 6/15/00 Bob Drogin Nick Anderson "…….'We're missing military plans that are so important to the safety of nations that their loss amounts to a security threat I don't think that we've faced since the Soviets moved nuclear-tipped missiles into Cuba years ago,' Sen. Ben Night-horse Campbell (R-Colo.) told a joint hearing of the Senate Select Intelligence Committee and the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. …… 'What's missing, and may well have been stolen, is information about how to disarm our nuclear weapons and those of perhaps some other countries whose nuclear weapons could be stolen and used by terrorists,' said Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.). He said terrorists could use the information to 'booby trap' a nuclear device to prevent it from being disarmed. ……..In a sign of the mounting concern, the FBI formally took the lead in what had been a joint investigation with the Energy Department. The CIA is heading a U.S. intelligence community effort to assess the damage of the potential loss at the New Mexico lab. ......"

Los Angeles Times 6/15/00 Bob Drogin Nick Anderson "…….In a vivid illustration of congressional anger over the scandal, the Senate voted, 97 to 0, to confirm CIA Deputy Director John A. Gordon as director of the semiautonomous National Nuclear Security Administration. ...... Congress created the NNSA eight months ago, at the height of a scandal over alleged Chinese espionage at Los Alamos, to oversee the Energy Department's nuclear weapon complex. Gordon will have the portfolio of undersecretary of Energy for nuclear security. …….. Republicans cheered Gordon's confirmation and said it was long overdue. They insisted it had been blocked by Democrats trying to help the Clinton administration delay implementation of congressionally mandated reforms. But the latest security breach smashed the legislative logjam. ….."

Los Angeles Times 6/15/00 Bob Drogin Nick Anderson "…….Energy Secretary Bill Richardson told reporters that he has asked Gordon, a retired four-star Air Force general, to immediately conduct a 'top-to-bottom' review of the Los Alamos, Sandia and Lawrence Livermore national laboratories. Richardson said he would testify Wednesday before the Senate Armed Services Committee. Republican senators sharply criticized Richardson earlier Wednesday for declining to appear at the joint hearing. Some openly suggested he consider resigning. ………. Sen. Pete V. Domenici (R-N.M.), a longtime supporter of the national weapon labs, appeared stunned. 'You don't need a genius to figure out you can't have 26 people walking in and out, no matter how great they are, without signing in and out,' he said. 'That's got to be fixed.' ……"

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 6/15/00 "……Heads should roll ... We're not sure when or even if the U.S. Department of Energy planned to really shake up things at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. But now would be a good time. ……And as bad as this latest security debacle is, worse is that even though the data were discovered missing more than one month ago (and, in reality, had last been seen April 7), senior Energy Department officials weren't notified until June 1.......,, A top-to-bottom shake-up is in order - and now. ... start with Richardson Yes, heads should roll in the Los Alamos debacle. And the first should be that of Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson. Mr. Richardson, now openly vying to be Al Gore's running mate, at one time had been one of the more acceptable members of the otherwise undesirable Clinton crowd. But he has performed abysmally in safeguarding our nuclear secrets. From failing to take immediate action in the alleged espionage case involving Wen Ho Lee (also at Los Alamos), to a system that seemed to make him last in the in-the-know loop with this latest debacle, Richardson has failed his charge. (He's also the gentleman, by the way, who sought to shuffle off Monica Lewinsky to a job at the United Nations when the Clinton Express was impeachment-bound.) …….. To add insult to incompetency, Richardson Wednesday sent a senior adviser, not himself, to a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on the matter. (Mr. Clinton obviously was nonplussed; he took the morning off to play golf.) ......"

Albany Times Union 6/15/00 "…..Energy Secretary Richardson should be held accountable for Los Alamos security lapses Sound familiar? It should. There's been another serious security breach at the Los Alamos national weapons laboratory. The secretary of energy is outraged, and vows to get to the bottom of it. …….This time, confronted with the disappearance of two computer hard drives containing vital nuclear secrets, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson has summoned two of the most prominent retired members of Congress to launch an investigation. But that's not nearly enough. Not this time. Security debacles at Los Alamos were supposed to be something of the past. Mr. Richardson himself promised that much last year, after a scandal involving alleged espionage. At that point, he no longer could get away with opposing the creation of an agency to oversee nuclear weapons programs. ...... It's troubling enough that maintaining national security requires possessing nuclear weapons in the first place. It's essential, then, that they be guarded with the utmost care, rather than neglected in a way that would be comical under less critical circumstances. …..The Clinton administration needs to find someone up to that task. Mr. Richardson clearly isn't. ……"

International Herald Tribune via WorldNetDaily 6/15/00 Reuters "……Furious Republican senators questioned Energy Department officials Wednesday over the loss of two computer hard drives containing nuclear weapons secrets, pointedly blaming Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, who was absent....... ''We invited Secretary Richardson to appear before our two committees to explain to the representatives here of the American people why some of their most sensitive nuclear weapons information appears to have walked out the door,'' said Senator Richard Shelby of Alabama, who chaired a joint hearing of the energy and intelligence committees. ''Apparently, Secretary Richardson has decided there's something more important to do than account to the American people,'' Mr. Shelby said. ………. Mr. Shelby listed what he called ''an endless stream of accidents'' involving U.S. national security, including alleged missile technology transfers to China, Russian listening devices placed at a State Department conference room, missing laptops apparently taken from the State Department, and the case of former Los Alamos researcher Wen Ho Lee, who was fired for allegedly copying nuclear weapons secrets and storing them on an unclassified computer network. ………. Mr. Browne has said the data contained on the hard drives, while classified and valuable for defusing nuclear weapons, did not contain detailed drawings that could help someone make a nuclear bomb. Los Alamos has suspended six managers for failing to immediately report the disappearance of the hard drives. ………On Wednesday, the Senate unanimously confirmed General John Gordon, deputy director of the CIA, to head a new semiautonomous nuclear security agency that will investigate security at Los Alamos. The new post was created by Congress last year in response to allegations that China stole U.S. nuclear weapons secrets. ……"

http://www.freerepublic.com/forum/a391ed49021ff.htm Government News Source: The Associated Press (via ClariNet) Published: Sunday, 14-May-2000 7:40AM Author: John MacDonald Posted on 05/14/2000 09:30:08 PDT "……In a move officials called unprecedented, Los Alamos National Laboratory gave an extensive tour of its facilities to reporters Saturday , trying to allay fears that a wildfire damaged key research and nuclear waste areas at the high-security facility. ``This is an attempt to show you we are not hiding anything,'' said Gene Habiger, director of security and emergency response for the Department of Energy. ``If anyone thinks the government, the Department of Energy, can suppress the truth, they're wrong………. "

http://www.freerepublic.com/forum/a391f0a1b36c3.htm Large Number of Spies Act as Journalists (~May 15, 2000) News/Current Events News Source: NewsMax.com Published: 5/15/00 Author: Christopher Ruddy Posted on 05/14/2000 "……Russia's highest ranking defector says State Department claims that no foreign or American journalists are engaged in espionage is absolute nonsense. Col. Stanislav Lunev reveals that many journalists from Russia and other countries are, in reality, spies. He also says that many Russian journalists have recruited leading American reporters to engage in espionage as well. Col. Lunev was the highest ranking spy ever to defect from the GRU - Russia's military intelligence unit. He did so while living and working in Washington as a TASS correspondent. ….. His story was deemed so vital by the CIA and FBI he remains under the Witness Protection Program. He currently writes a column for NewsMax.com. ….."

NewsMax.com 6/13/00 Dan Frisa "….Whoops! There goes another batch of nuclear secrets, right out from under the collective noses of Willie's Wiz Kids. If this situation were not so grave it would rival the Keystone Kops of silent movie fame, whose bumbling mishaps and rank incompetence had audiences rolling in the aisles. What we as a nation face here, however, is deadly serious, with profound breaches at the Los Alamos nuclear laboratory placing U.S. security at great risk. This isn't the first time it's happened, and legitimate questions have been asked raising the prospect that perhaps what has transpired is not accidental at all. …… After scientist Wen Ho Lee was suspected of having breached security procedures, enabling China to glean highly classified information, then Energy Secretary Hazel O'Leary was forced out following disclosures that she had padded the payroll of Rockwell Inc., the private security firm that was allowed to reduce its staff after receiving a new contract at a higher rate of compensation. Where did O'Leary wind up? On the Rockwell board of directors, along with several of her top aides. ……. "

NewsMax.com 6/13/00 Dan Frisa "….It's also important to bear in mind that these are not the only incidents putting the integrity of our nuclear arsenal at risk. Remember, it was this same Clinton crowd that purposely circumvented stated policy by allowing the late, then Commerce Secretary Ron Brown to overrule the Departments of State and Defense in approving the transfer of highly sensitive computer technology to China by top Clinton donor Bernard Schwartz, CEO of the Loral Corp. …….A special House committee chaired by Rep. Chris Cox, R-Calif., conducted a highly respected bipartisan investigation of that campaign-cash-for-computer-chips scandal and found that our entire nuclear arsenal was severely compromised and exposed the continental U.S. for the first time to a nuclear strike by China, which previously had been well beyond its technological capabilities. …….. The irresponsible, adolescent attitude of the Clinton crowd has damaged the strength and integrity of the United States and placed our citizens in harm's way. The even deeper horror is that there is barely a care evidenced by the complicit mainstream media, whose silence had been deadly in enabling such serious malfeasance to remain unaccounted for…….."

THE WASHINGTON TIMES 6/14/00 Jerry Seper "……The FBI will begin administering polygraph tests today to workers at the Los Alamos weapons laboratory who had access to two now-missing top-secret computer hard drives containing U.S. nuclear secrets. A day after government officials disclosed the missing hard drives, Senate Republicans yesterday angrily called on Energy Secretary Bill Richardson to explain how the highly sensitive tapes disappeared. "You can point the finger at one man," said Sen. John W. Warner, Virginia Republican and chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, referring to Mr. Richardson, who last year promised a "zero-tolerance security policy" for the department……. "He gave us the assurance that everything was under control," Mr. Warner said, adding he will ask Mr. Richardson and other top Energy Department officials to testify at a still-unscheduled hearing to determine the cause of the latest security breach………. The FBI, the lead agency in an ongoing "criminal inquiry," already has interviewed 90 persons in the probe, and will begin the polygraph examinations today. The 90 had access to the secure vaults where the hard drives were stored, including 28 who could enter the area unescorted. The FBI will identify those it wants to undergo polygraph examinations……… Last May, Mr. Richardson said there was a "zero tolerance security policy," that "no security infractions are acceptable," and that penalties would be strengthened. He said those involved in "verified unintentional or reckless breaches that create a significant risk of a national security compromise or that display a willful disregard for security procedures" would be disciplined……"

Washington Times 6/14/00 "…...Although the hard drives disappeared in the heat of an approaching wildfire, the trail is now getting cold. Officials realized the hard drives, each the size of a pack of cards, were missing May 7. Three days later the lab was evacuated because of the wildfire. The labs reopened May 22 and a follow-up search revealed on June 1 that the hard drives were still missing. What a surprise. They have now been missing for almost six weeks……..If the hard drives were stolen, no one seems to know who took them. Or for what purpose. The hard drives contained an array of secrets about U.S. nuclear weapons, which would make them valuable to any rogue nation. Depending on where these hard drives ended up, our biggest national security loss may turn out to be the boost these secrets could give our enemies abroad….."

Washington Times 6/14/00 "…...Of course, this is not the first time this administration has lost information vital to national security. The State Department has been bugged, two laptops (which also contained an array of secrets) simply disappeared and the Chinese are now in possession of some of our most sensitive nuclear secrets, which is why Wen Ho Lee is on trial. The Cox Report brought many of these problems to the evening news, but day by day officials in this administration allowed these problems to go uncorrected….."

Washington Times 6/14/00 "…...The sheer amount of information lost by the Clinton-Gore administration is astounding. Over the past three months alone, it was revealed the White House lost 246,000 e-mails that were under congressional subpoena. Vice President Gore, meanwhile, lost 18 months' worth of e-mails that could have revealed his personal campaign-finance law violations. Ken Starr was well versed in dealing with the loss of records. On his watch, he witnessed the loss and then miraculous reappearance of Hillary Clinton's Rose Law Firm records. Records pertaining to the Whitewater investigation were discovered in the trunk of an old car, which had been slated to be crushed into a cube……"

NY Times 6/14/00 James Risen "……The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Energy Department have opened a joint inquiry into the disappearance of the hard drives, which had been stored in a vault at the laboratory. ……. … Senior Energy Department officials at Los Alamos and in Washington said today that more than three weeks passed before they learned of the disappearance. John C. Browne, the director of the Los Alamos laboratory, said he was not informed of the loss until the night of May 31, while F.B.I. and Energy Department officials in Washington said they were not notified until June 1. …….. The Energy Department has not ruled out espionage as the cause of the disappearance of the hard drives. But officials said that there might well be a more innocent explanation, and that the hard drives might have been lost in the chaos resulting from the fire, which burned hundreds of houses in the Los Alamos area and came within a half mile of the building where the vault is. ……."I am outraged by the security lapses that have taken place," Mr. Richardson said today. "We are not going to tolerate this. There will be accountability and disciplinary action." "What I am most concerned about," he added, "is the failure of the lab to promptly notify the Department of Energy when these potential breaches took place." ……… "

NY Times 6/14/00 James Risen "……In an effort to show a rapid response to the building controversy, Mr. Richardson announced that he had named former Senator Howard H. Baker Jr., Republican of Tennessee, and former Representative Lee H. Hamilton, Democrat of Indiana, to investigate the disappearance of the nuclear secrets. Their review will be independent of the inquiry by the F.B.I. and the Energy Department, a department spokeswoman said. But the move did not quiet criticism in Congress, where lawmakers once again questioned the laboratory's ability to manage the nation's nuclear secrets. Members of Congress heaped scorn on the Energy Department and Los Alamos managers during hearings today, saying they found it incredible that a major security breach could occur after they had received assurances from Mr. Richardson that security had been tightened in the wake of accusations of espionage and evidence of security breaches at the laboratory. ….."

NY Times 6/14/00 James Risen "……"I have to tell you, in my hometown of Menominee, Mich., if I want to check out a library book at the Menominee public library, you have to have a library card and they make a record of it if you remove the book," said Representative Bart Stupak, a Michigan Democrat, during today's House hearing. ……"And if you keep the book too long, they send you a notice asking you to return it," he continued. "Well, most Americans would find it hard to believe that Menominee public library has a more sophisticated tracking system for 'Winnie the Pooh' than Los Alamos has for highly classified nuclear weapons data." ……"

NY Times 6/14/00 James Risen "……Mr. Richardson's past pledges to clean up the Energy Department and improve security were also thrown back at him by lawmakers. "Since allegations of spying at Los Alamos first surfaced early last year, this committee and the American public have been subject to a steady stream of press releases, action plans, tough talk and photo ops from Secretary Richardson and senior D.O.E. officials designed to show a commitment to security at the Department of Energy," said Representative Thomas J. Bliley Jr., the Virginia Republican who is the chairman of the Commerce Committee. …"

TBO.com 6/13/00 H Josef Hebert AP "…..Meanwhile, six managers at the Los Alamos lab in New Mexico, were placed on administrative leave with pay, pending the outcome of various investigations of the incident. Neither lab or Energy Department officials would comment on the action or identify the individuals. It was learned by The Associated Press that among those put on leave was Stephen Younger, head of the nuclear weapons programs……… The disappearance of the top-secret computer drives, containing information about how to dismantle both U.S. and Russian nuclear devices, has prompted sharp criticism in Congress. Already a string of hearings are scheduled this week in both the Senate and House to questions lab and Energy Department officials about the embarrassing security lapse, which could blow into a major political problem for the administration and for Richardson. ……."

TBO.com 6/13/00 H Josef Hebert AP "…..Richardson, who spent most of last year defusing a security flap involving fired Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee, came under sharp criticism Tuesday for the latest incident, although he apparently didn't know about it until a few days ago. "This incident occurred on his watch. He'll have to be held accountable," said Sen. John Warner, R-Va., chairman of the Armed Services Committee. Warner said his committee planned a hearing Thursday on the missing nuclear material and both Richardson and Los Alamos lab director John Browne were to testify……."

TBO.com 6/13/00 H Josef Hebert AP "…..During that time both Richardson and Habiger, his top "security czar," flew to Los Alamos because of the wildfires. Neither, however, was given a hint that nuclear secrets may have been compromised, officials said. "I'm most concerned about the failure of the lab to promptly notify ... when these potential (security) breaches took place. ... The lab is going to have to have some good explanations," Richardson told reporters. ……"

CBSNEWS 6/13/00 "……Two dozen federal agents are now investigating the disappearance of two computer hard drives from the federal weapons laboratory at Los Alamos, CBS News Correspondent Sharyl Attkisson reports, and lab employees are scheduled to begin undergoing lie detector tests on Wednesday. Officials are questioning more than 80 people who could have had recent access to the missing hard drives. A source at Los Alamos told CBS News: "The FBI is all over the place. They are searching people's homes." ……… Energy department officials said they don't suspect espionage but haven't ruled it out either. "This is an extremely serious matter, and we are taking swift actions to deal with it," says John Browne, the lab's director. But Congress Tuesday criticized the department for a sluggish response to the hard drives' disappearance. ... The department's chief of security had to explain to lawmakers Tuesday why the investigation wasn't begun sooner. …… The department's top security official, retired Air Force Gen. Eugene Habiger, told a House hearing that in his judgment, the two drives were likely lost or misplaced and not stolen, though he declined to provide specific evidences in an open session. Only 26 people had unescorted access to the vault where the drives were kept and "these are dedicated, loyal Americans," Habiger said. …….. "But you can't dispute that they're missing," snapped back Rep. Bart Stupak, D-Mich. "You can't dispute that when they took them out there is no procedure in place to even identify who took them out." …….. "Someone lost the information, yes sir," Habiger replied. "And as soon as we find out who lost the information I can guarantee you that very swift appropriate action will be taken." …….. Stupak, along with other lawmakers, said that even if the material is recovered, the incident demonstrates continued sloppy security procedures at the weapons labs. …….. "

FOXNEWS 6/13/00 Michael Park "…..The classified nuclear secrets that vanished from Los Alamos National Laboratory are probably not in the hands of spies, federal officials stressed Tuesday. ……. The security breach, which went unreported by lab workers for three weeks, was considered serious enough to prompt a congressional inquiry, which convened Tuesday. ……. Ed Curran, director of the Energy Department's counter-intelligence office, said Monday that "the indicators (for espionage) are just not there." A spy, he said, would have only taken one drive because the information on both was identical. Curran said they were more likely "misused, misplaced or accidentally destroyed." Los Alamos spokesman James Danneskiold repeated those statements Tuesday, but said no possibilities have been ruled out. ….. An FBI spokesman, Special Agent Paul Bresson, confirmed to FOXNews.com that the criminal investigation was focusing on the lab and lab personnel. The Energy Department, which notified the FBI as soon as the disks were found missing, said normal lab operations have been suspended to permit staff to assist in the search. Polygraph tests of employees will begin Wednesday. …… "

FOXNEWS 6/13/00 Michael Park "…..The chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee told Fox News the latest breach just confirms his suspicions of weak security at the Department of Energy. "A lot of us have never been satisfied that there's real security at the labs. We've been told that there is security. All these steps have been taken by the secretary and his team but a lot of us on the Intelligence Committee and on the Energy Committee and in the House and the Senate have had our misgivings," said Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala. ......... A lab spokesman said that if the workers believed the drives were missing, protocol demanded that they should have notified security immediately. Discipline for such a breach could include termination, he said. ……. "Maybe people will say they have the wrong man and the right man is still on the premises," said Sir Laurence Martin, a strategist at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. ……"

CNN 6/13/00 Amy Paulson "…..The drives, while heavily protected in the 3-by-10-foot vault, are meant to be portable "because they are used by our Nuclear Emergency Search Team to respond to incidents around the globe on a 24-hour basis," Los Alamos lab director John Browne told CNN. He said it is not clear if the information on the computer hard drives has been "compromised," but conceded the material "would be valuable to certain people." ...... Gen. Eugene Habiger, director of DOE's office of security and emergency operations, told committee members that the vault is so secure, it is "something that you and I would need several weeks to break into." Habiger said that 28 people had unescorted access to the vault, meaning they knew how to open it. Fifty-seven others were granted escorted access to the vault. All of the individuals with unescorted access have been interviewed, as well as most of those with escorted access, Habiger said. He said that he believes it is likely that the drives may have simply been misplaced. …….The drives were accounted for during an April 7 "fully confirmed audit," Habiger said, adding that later in the month an additional, unconfirmed audit was conducted and no "alarm bells" went off -- indicating that all three kits were likely intact. A May 22 inventory found four of the six hard drives were accounted for, he said..….."

CNN 6/13/00 Amy Paulson "…..The subcommittee's Republican majority raised several questions about the laboratory's security procedures during the hearing. Its chairman, Rep. Fred Upton (R-Michigan), said he was "fairly incredulous" to find that such a high number of lab employees had unescorted access to the missing drives. And Rep. Richard Burr (R-North Carolina) questioned why the laboratory did not track access to the vault. …… "It is amazing to me that there is not some record of who accessed it, when and if anyone removed something from that vault and, if so, when it was returned," Burr said. …… Rep. Ed Bryant (R-Tennessee) added: "I think when you start with the presumption that because you've got good, dedicated Americans there, that rather than getting started with a criminal investigation, you're delaying an investigation of all of those who had access." "The presumption or the assumption was 'There's a good reason somebody out there has got it,' instead of thinking that it could have been stolen," Habiger replied. The FBI is leading the investigation "very, very aggressively," Habiger said. The bureau will begin polygraph examinations of lab employees beginning tomorrow, he said. ……"

CNN 6/13/00 Amy Paulson "….."If they can't keep track of this kind of information, it raises serious concerns about overall security," said Senator Frank Murkowski, R-Alaska, chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. Rep. Porter Goss (R-Florida), chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said Tuesday that the case of the missing hard drives was "completely unacceptable," and accused the administration of allowing a "culture of disdain towards security" that has led to "severe national security breaches." ……… "

ABCNEWS 6/13/00 "…..A criminal investigation is being conducted jointly by the Energy Department and the FBI. The loss of the hard drives from a supposedly secure vault has thrown the spotlight on what several congressmen charge are shoddy computer security practices at the Department of Energy…… Energy officials say privately they do not believe the hard drives are missing as a result of espionage - nor do they seem to suspect the equipment was stolen. Other valuable equipment was not missing from the vault……Rather, officials say they suspect negligence by a member of the department's Nuclear Emergency Search Team, NEST, which is located at the lab and is trained to respond to nuclear terrorist incidents and other nuclear emergencies. ……… Officials say there could be serious consequences if they fell into the wrong hands. The missing data includes information on U.S. and foreign countries' nuclear weapons, ABCNEWS confirmed today……… The leave is not punitive or disciplinary, the officials said. "It was done strictly to ensure the independence and the appearance of independence of a UC review panel that's coming in to look at management performance and practices in relation to the security incident," said Lab spokesman John Gustafson……… Congressmen at a hearing today were aghast at what they said was poor security at both the labs and at DOE headquarters. "How can these disks be missing after more than a month with only as many as 86 individuals, 26 being unescorted, having access to these highly classified disks?" demanded Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., chairman of the subcommittee on oversight and investigations of the House committee on commerce. ……"

CNN 6/13/00 Amy Paulson "…..The situation is expected to put new emphasis on approving the nomination of Air Force Gen. John A. Gordon, now deputy CIA director, to head the new semi-atonomous nuclear weapons agency within the Energy Department. "We're going to move swiftly [on the nomination]," said Sen. John Warner, R-Va., chairman of the Armed Services Committee. Congressional critics have argued that a streamlined nuclear weapons agency is needed to prevent security breaches. ……."We certainly can't rule out espionage, but what it looks like right now is more human error ... because, yes, there was other information that could have been taken and it wasn't," John Browne, the lab's director of the federal weapons research, told Good Morning America……."

Washington Post 6/14/00 Walter Pincus "….As criticism of Los Alamos and the Energy Department mounted on Capitol Hill, White House press secretary Joe Lockhart said President Clinton still has full confidence in Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, who oversees all of nation's nuclear weapons laboratories……. Republicans in both the House and Senate recalled that Richardson - who has been mentioned as a possible Democratic vice presidential candidate - told Congress last year that there would be "zero tolerance" for security failures at the nuclear weapons laboratories…….. Warner and Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) called for the Senate to act immediately on the nomination of Gen. John Gordon, deputy director of the CIA, to the new post of head of the National Nuclear Security Administration. The Senate last night cleared the way for a vote to confirm Gordon today…….. Congress created the NNSA last year to oversee the nationwide complex of laboratories and factories that design, build and maintain America's nuclear weapons. Although the new agency is part of the Energy Department, its director will have substantial autonomy, and Richardson has objected to a possible loss of authority……. "At this moment the nuclear weapons complex in this country is in a state of limbo - of neither being a part of the Department of Energy, nor having a real head of its own," Rep. Heather A. Wilson (R-N.M.) said yesterday during a House Commerce Committee hearing on the Energy Department's security problems. Gordon's congressional supporters expect him to move quickly to tighten computer security systems at Los Alamos and the other national labs, which in the past year have upgraded their computer systems, held "town meetings" on security and developed procedures for giving polygraphs on a regular basis to employees working with secret information……."

Washington Post 6/14/00 Walter Pincus "….Habiger told the House panel that a NEST member says he saw the hard drives in the vault during an inventory on April 7. Another employee who took an inventory on April 27 "doesn't remember seeing them, but he said if they weren't there, it would have rung alarm bells," Habiger said……… The drives were discovered missing on May 7, when two NEST members went into the vault to retrieve them as a wildfire swept across New Mexico and approached the laboratory. "They wanted to have one suitcase available to be prepared if any type of nuclear emergency arose while the fire was raging," an Energy Department official said. The two employees, however, did not immediately report their discovery to the laboratory director or other senior officials, though they did tell some other team members. When the lab reopened May 24, after about $300 million in fire damage, the NEST members with knowledge of the loss spent a week looking for the missing hard drives without telling anyone outside their group……"

NewsMax.com 6/13/00 John LeBoutillier "…..I don't believe in coincidences. Here are two so-called "coincidences" - neither of which are anything but deliberate acts of malicious behavior against the United States: ……… I do not believe these "lost" or "stolen" computer hard drives at our Los Alamos laboratory disappeared "coincidentally" during the confusion from a calamitous fire admittedly set by our own government! ……. What is more likely is that our government has been dangerously penetrated - to the point where someone either set the fire with the intent to steal these valuable nuclear secrets or else used the fire as the distraction needed to steal these hard drives. Amazingly, neither the media nor the congressmen and senators who grilled Energy Secretary Bill Richardson yesterday even raised the possibility of a deliberate linkage between the fire and the theft/loss of these secrets. ......We have learned that under the Clinton administration nothing should be ignored. Anything is possible. The most innocent of explanations should be discarded; the worst implication should be drawn. ……"

Washington Times 6/14/00 John McCaslin "….'Give me a year' Good grief. It was just last week that this column suggested Energy Secretary Bill Richardson was spending too much time on Vice President Al Gore's campaign trail. After all, we revealed, for over a year Mr. Richardson had ignored one congressional committee's written request that he address questions about cyber-security measures at the Energy Department's weapons laboratories, including the Los Alamos nuclear laboratory in New Mexico…….We'd written that House Science Committee Chairman F. James Sensenbrenner Jr., had given Mr. Richardson until sundown last Wednesday to address 18 unanswered questions about espionage and national security at the weapons labs. The questions had been sent to Mr. Richardson on June 3, 1999, two weeks after his May 20 testimony on "protecting the nation's secrets." To refresh Mr. Richardson's memory, here's what he told committee members in his testimony at last year's hearing: "I would just ask you to let me run my department. Give me a year to see if I've performed. Call me up again, and I will appear again to see whether I have initiated the reforms that I said I had."….."

Drudge Report 6/12/00 "……Sen. Jon Kyl [R-AZ] member of Senate Intelligence Committee says there is 'physical evidence to suggest theft' at Los Alamos but declined to elaborate... One scientists at the lab has given the FBI 'a series of conflicting answers' in interviews, the LA TIMES is planning to report... "

Associated Press 6/14/00 H Josef Hebert "…..The disappearance of nuclear secrets from a vault at the Los Alamos weapons lab has prompted a criminal investigation and unleashed another torrent of criticism about security at the Energy Department, leaving the Clinton administration scrambling to contain the political fallout. The FBI, which was brought into the case when the Energy Department learned on June 1 of the disappearance of the nuclear secrets from the New Mexico facility, was conducting a criminal probe. The investigation was expected to focus on some two-dozen individuals who had free access to the highly secured vault where two computer hard drives that contained the nuclear files were kept. Polygraph tests were expected to begin to be administered to some of the Los Alamos scientists within days, Energy Department officials said. ……"

Associated Press 6/14/00 H Josef Hebert "…..Senate Republican leaders, meanwhile, said they planned to act today on the nomination of John A. Gordon, the deputy CIA director, to head a new semi-independent nuclear weapons agency. Gordon's nomination, held up for months over a disagreement on how much power the agency should have within the Energy Department, is now expected to get swift approval. ….. And while Energy Secretary Bill Richardson emerged largely unscathed last from the Wen Ho Lee case, which also involved missing nuclear secrets, this time Richardson is expected to be a prime target. …..``This incident occurred on his watch. He'll have to be made accountable,'' said Sen. John Warner, R-Va., chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee. ……"

Associated Press 6/14/00 H Josef Hebert "…..Richardson announced that two highly respected elder statesmen - former Senate Majority Leader Howard Baker, R-Tenn., and former Rep. Lee Hamilton, D-Ind. - would investigate the disappearance of the hard drives and make recommendations on security improvements to President Clinton. ……"

Associated Press 6/14/00 H Josef Hebert "…... And both House and Senate intelligence committees and armed services committees announced hearings for today and Thursday on the missing computer drives. ``The Energy Department has not heeded warnings about the dire need for security reforms,'' said Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., calling the latest incident ``an unacceptable security breach.'' He maintained there is some evidence the devices may have been stolen, but provided no details. …….. "

CNSNews.com 6/14/00 Susan Jones "….Lots of questions on Capitol Hill Wednesday, including this one from Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Frank Murkowski: Why didn't Energy Secretary Bill Richardson come before the Committee himself to answer questions about the case of the missing hard drives, loaded with America's nuclear secrets? "If this material is in the hands of sophisticated terrorists, could they arm a nuclear devise or disarm one from this particular sensitive information? I hope we can address that question today, because that surely is a grave concern," said Murkowski (R-AK), opening hearings on what one Senator called "a serious security lapse."……. As the joint hearing opened Wednesday morning on Capitol Hill, Republican Committee members took the opportunity to express their dismay that Secretary Richardson was not there to testify. Testifying in his place was John Browne, the director of the Los Alamos National Laboratory and T. J. Glautheir, the Deputy Energy Secretary……..Sen. Larry Craig (R-WY ) noted that Secretary Richardson was scheduled to speak at the National Press Club at noon. "He's confirmed [to speak at noon]," said Craig, betraying anger at the fact that Richardson would pass up matters of national security for a routine public appearance…….. "He was invited, he was asked to be here, it is important that he should be here. But I guess it's more important to be before the National Press Club than it is a joint hearing of the United States Senate Intelligence and Energy and Natural Resources Committee."……Republicans made it clear that the buck stops with Secretary Richardson this time, unlike the previous security breach involving physicist Wen Ho Lee, which happened before Richardson took over the Energy Department -- and the nuclear weapons laboratories that fall under the Department's umbrella…….Many Senators made it clear they will no longer take Secretary Richardson at his word. …….They noted that Richardson had repeatedly assured Congress that "he has the labs under control and the national security is adequately protected." "Well," said Sen. Murkowski, "clearly it isn't true and that's not the case. We have again learned the hard way that the DOE security is still shamefully inadequate. The Secretary must bear the responsibility. It isn't the case this time of something that happened on somebody else's watch. This happened on Secretary Richardson's watch."……."

NewsMax.com 6/14/00 Carl Limbacher "….Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Shelby called on Energy Secretary Bill Richardson to resign in the wake of news that two computer hard drives containing nuclear secrets have disappeared from the atomic weapons facility at Los Alamos, New Mexico. After listening to Richardson testify about the explosive development earlier in the day, the Alabama Republican told CNBC's Chris Matthews Tuesday night: …….. "Let's hope it's not espionage, cause that has not been proven yet. But if it's just lack of dilligence, if it's sloppy and you don't know where these type disks are, it goes to the security of the lab too. I think it's time that we have put in place a Secretary of Energy that's going to be accountable to the American people. And I submit to you that Richardson is not that man." …….Appearing with Shelby was Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee Porter Goss, who said the disappearance of the secret computer disks reflected "a culture of disdain" for security issues that permeated throughout the Clinton administration. ……..Secretary Richardson was a no show at Wednesday morning's joint meeting of the Senate Intelligence and Energy committees. Shelby addressed Richardson in absentia: "As you can see Mr. Secretary, there's an empty chair at our witness table. It's your chair. You should be here today, of all people." ……. Senate Energy Chairman Frank Murkowski added, "What did Secretary Richardson know and when did he know it and why isn't the Secretary here to answer that question?" ……. "

Center for Security Policy 6/14/00 "….. The revelation that hard drives containing exceedingly sensitive information about the technical and operational details of American, Russian and perhaps other foreign nuclear weapons have "gone missing" from a secure vault at the Los Alamos Nuclear Laboratory helps once again to illuminate a phenomenon the Center for Security Policy has been documenting for most of the past eight years: the Clinton-Gore Administration's benign neglect, if not outright malfeasance, with respect to physical security, information security and personnel security matters.(1) Characteristically, the Administration is trying to pooh-pooh this episode, clinging desperately to the line that there is no evidence that espionage accounts for the disappearance of the two hard drives and their highly classified data and hoping that no such evidence will be forthcoming. Even so, the fact that this hardware and the information it contained is currently AWOL gives lie to repeated -- and transparently fatuous -- assurances made in recent months by Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson about the tight security now in place at the Nation's nuclear laboratories. ………… Secretary Richardson defended the DoE on 25 January 1999 saying, "There's no mission that's more important to me than taking actions necessary to ensure that America's nuclear secrets are well guarded." More recently he claimed that "we have top-notch security right now in our national labs." ……."

Center for Security Policy 6/14/00 "….. Thanks to legislation that arose from congressional investigations into an earlier, major security breach at Los Alamos -- allegedly involving a physicist at the lab named Wen Ho Lee -- a new, semi-autonomous National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has been created. President Clinton has nominated General John Gordon (USAF), who is presently the Deputy Director of Central Intelligence, to head it up. …….. Unfortunately, Gen. Gordon's nomination has fallen victim to what appears to be an ongoing gambit by Secretary Richardson aimed at thwarting the intent of Congress and the spirit, if not in every case the lette, of the law. Having failed to stop the creation of the NNSA, Richardson announced that he and senior subordinates (several of whom were widely believed to be part of the security problem afflicting the nuclear weapons complex) would be "double-hatted," (i.e., they would retain day-to-day control over a portfolio reeling from their previous misconduct). ……… Now, it appears, rather than acquiesce to the appointment, confirmation and installation of someone who knows something about nuclear weapons policy and programs,(2) Secretary Richardson is working with a sympathetic Democratic Senator -- Sen. Richard Bryan of Nevada -- to keep Gen. Gordon from starting work. ……. Happily, Sen. Bryan maintains he "has no reservations about" General Gordon, finding him to be eminently qualified for the position. What is more, even the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board (PFIAB), which had been charged with conducting a postmortem on the Wen Ho Lee/Los Alamos fiasco, concluded that the Department of Energy is "incapable of reforming itself." …"

Albuquerque Journal 6/14/00 Ian Hoffman "……Executives of Los Alamos nuclear-weapons lab still are unsure when two hard drives of bomb secrets vanished and where they are today - destroyed by accident, held by a lab employee or lost to an unknown fate. Los Alamos National Laboratory director John C. Browne on Tuesday suspended with pay the head of the lab's weapons program, Stephen Younger, and five junior managers pending the outcome of multiple investigations. …….. Lab officials conducted 200 interviews and an office-by-office search starting June 1, the day after hearing of the lost drives. Nothing turned up. …….. The knowledge gap bodes poorly for Browne and top Energy Department officials who are to be grilled by senators this morning, after months of declaring the lab secure. They will admit there was no video surveillance or sign-out sheet for the vault where the drives were kept, nor other records to suggest who might have taken them and when. They also will say the loss is unprecedented. ……DOE's top security officer suggested Monday that Los Alamos employees delayed reporting the loss of the drives in hope of finding them and avoiding the report. ……. DOE critics say Richardson frustrated start-up of the new, semi-independent National Nuclear Security Administration by insisting on "double-hatting" his chiefs of security, counterintelligence and oversight with similar jobs in the new agency. ...... "The temperament I'm getting from Republicans is very angry towards Bill Richardson for trying so hard to resist the new agency," said Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., who co-authored the new nuclear-weapons agency. "It's almost 8 months old, and instead of trying to implement it, he obstructed it. ... I think they will come down hard." ……"

Albuquerque Journal 6/14/00 Ian Hoffman "……Members of the Nuclear Emergency Search Team - an elite nuclear SWAT unit recently redubbed the Joint Technical Operations Team and trained to disarm nuclear weapons - entered the 10-by-20-foot vault in the lab's Administrative Building and found the two hard drives missing May 7, the Sunday that a wildfire exploded across forest lands just west of the lab, Browne said. ….The data on the drives was not encrypted and could be easily read by another computer. …..The team did not report loss of the drives to lab security until May 31, a week after the fire subsided and lab staff was back at work. ….."

Albuquerque Journal 6/14/00 Ian Hoffman "……An estimated 86 people had access to the vault, 26 of them able to walk in unescorted and take items unchecked. For three days, LANL officials did 200 interviews and scoured much of the 43-square-mile lab, office by office, finding no sign of the drives. They checked lists of lab equipment sold for salvage, and they checked the mail. …… .."

ABCNEWS 6/12/00 "…..The FBI and Department of Energy are searching for classified information missing from computers at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. The search is being conducted as part of a criminal investigation, but officials said they don't have any evidence of espionage at the lab, which designs and builds some of America's most advanced nuclear weapons…….. The revelations come six months after the indictment of Wen Ho Lee, a nuclear scientist, on charges he removed nuclear secrets from a secured computer at the Los Alamos weapons lab………. Lab officials are conducting an exhaustive search of computers, safes, containers and vaults and said they have interviewed all staff members who had access to the vault where the media were stored. Eighty-six people were said to have access to the vault where the hard drives were stored. Containers were in the vault, but not the hard drive, sources told ABCNEWS……Some organizations within the lab suspected of being responsible for the missing information have been "stood down" during the investigation, it said, and some employees suspended from their normal activities……… Some employees were assisting with search, to do a full accounting of material…….. The University of California, which runs the lab, "is prepared to take all necessary and appropriate action to address this matter. This includes making all improvements at Los Alamos and holding individuals personally accountable for their conduct or lack of action," the statement said….."

Reuters 6/12/00 Zelie Pollon "……Electronically-stored classified information -- believed to include U.S. and Russian nuclear secrets -- disappeared from a vault at the Los Alamos Nuclear Laboratory two months ago and the FBI has launched an intense search, officials and media said Monday. ….The Times said the new security breach was not believed to be related to the Lee case and was thought to have occurred long after his dismissal from the lab. The paper also said the missing material included information about the Russian nuclear weapons program. …….. "It was in the course of everyday work. Somebody needed something in there and they discovered them (the drives) missing", he told reporters. …….Gustafson declined to elaborate except to say the person involved was a staff member with clearance for the area where the drives were stored. …….. "

DRUDGE / WASHINGTON TIMES 6/12/00 H Josef Hebert "….. Officials learned of the missing secrets and other sensitive material on June 1 and have not ruled out the possibility that the disappearance of the data is related to the forest fire that threatened the lab and forced its evacuation last month…….. When the loss was discovered, the Energy Department's new security chief, retired Air Force Gen. Eugene Habiger, went to Los Alamos and directed an intensive search of but did not find the material, said officials who spoke on condition they would not be identified further. ……The possibility has not been ruled out that the material disappeared during the turmoil that surrounded the evacuation of the Los Alamos laboratory, when the facilities were threatened by the massive wild fire that destroyed much of the community of Los Alamos and parts of the lab itself. ......The investigation and search for the material has become more difficult because many of the lab's scientists left the area last month because of the wild fires that swept the region. The lab itself was evacuated May 10 for five days. Officials repeatedly have said that all nuclear material was safeguarded and not threatened by the fires. ……"

Washington Post 6/13/00 Barry Massey "……Workers at Los Alamos National Laboratory were concerned Monday about the lab's image following the disappearance of nuclear secrets from a vault, the latest bad news for the birthplace of the atomic bomb. "It's lousy. This has not been a good year," said Katherine Norskog, who has worked for the lab for 15 years. "Just everybody is going, 'Oh no!'" Norskog said she worries that in the public's perception, this would be another "black eye" for the lab. ……. "

THE WASHINGTON TIMES 6/13/00 Jerry Seper "….……. FBI spokesman Steven Berry yesterday confirmed only that agents in Albuquerque were conducting a "criminal inquiry" into the missing files, in conjunction with Energy Department officials…….. The disappearance of the sensitive files was first reported by the New York Times yesterday on its Web site, noting that the hard drives were missing when investigators searched for them after the fire. ……A search of the facility by the Energy Department's new security chief, Eugene Habiger, shortly after the files were discovered to be missing turned up no information on how they disappeared or where they had gone, department officials said……. Los Alamos lab officials late in the evening of May 7 sought to secure the nuclear data from possible harm as wildfires threatened the laboratory complex, but found them missing from their containers in the vault. Three days later, Los Alamos was evacuated because of the fire threat and did not resume significant operation until May 22……The fire threat and evacuation interrupted the search, but after May 22 Los Alamos officials began "an intensive search" for the material. Still, they did not report it missing for 10 days. Mr. Habiger said the delay in reporting would be looked into as part of the investigation, but that security was maintained during the entire period of the fire threat……… On June 2, Mr. Curran brought in the FBI, and a week ago 22 FBI agents and 12 DOE investigators, led by Mr. Habiger, flew to Los Alamos for an intensive search for the material and investigate its disappearance. But officials still don't know what happened to the two drives…….Mr. Curran said the Nuclear Emergency Search Team had used the material only a week before it was discovered missing as part of an exercise at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and it has not been ruled out that the material was misplaced at that time. He said such exercises are not unusual……"

ABCNEWS 6/12/00 "…..The FBI and Department of Energy are searching for classified information missing from computers at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. The search is being conducted as part of a criminal investigation, but officials said they don't have any evidence of espionage at the lab, which designs and builds some of America's most advanced nuclear weapons…….. The revelations come six months after the indictment of Wen Ho Lee, a nuclear scientist, on charges he removed nuclear secrets from a secured computer at the Los Alamos weapons lab………. Lab officials are conducting an exhaustive search of computers, safes, containers and vaults and said they have interviewed all staff members who had access to the vault where the media were stored. Eighty-six people were said to have access to the vault where the hard drives were stored. Containers were in the vault, but not the hard drive, sources told ABCNEWS……Some organizations within the lab suspected of being responsible for the missing information have been "stood down" during the investigation, it said, and some employees suspended from their normal activities……… Some employees were assisting with search, to do a full accounting of material…….. The University of California, which runs the lab, "is prepared to take all necessary and appropriate action to address this matter. This includes making all improvements at Los Alamos and holding individuals personally accountable for their conduct or lack of action," the statement said….."

Reuters 6/12/00 Zelie Pollon "……Electronically-stored classified information -- believed to include U.S. and Russian nuclear secrets -- disappeared from a vault at the Los Alamos Nuclear Laboratory two months ago and the FBI has launched an intense search, officials and media said Monday. ….The Times said the new security breach was not believed to be related to the Lee case and was thought to have occurred long after his dismissal from the lab. The paper also said the missing material included information about the Russian nuclear weapons program. …….. "It was in the course of everyday work. Somebody needed something in there and they discovered them (the drives) missing", he told reporters. …….Gustafson declined to elaborate except to say the person involved was a staff member with clearance for the area where the drives were stored. …….. "

DRUDGE / WASHINGTON TIMES 6/12/00 H Josef Hebert "….. Officials learned of the missing secrets and other sensitive material on June 1 and have not ruled out the possibility that the disappearance of the data is related to the forest fire that threatened the lab and forced its evacuation last month…….. When the loss was discovered, the Energy Department's new security chief, retired Air Force Gen. Eugene Habiger, went to Los Alamos and directed an intensive search of but did not find the material, said officials who spoke on condition they would not be identified further. ……The possibility has not been ruled out that the material disappeared during the turmoil that surrounded the evacuation of the Los Alamos laboratory, when the facilities were threatened by the massive wild fire that destroyed much of the community of Los Alamos and parts of the lab itself. ......The investigation and search for the material has become more difficult because many of the lab's scientists left the area last month because of the wild fires that swept the region. The lab itself was evacuated May 10 for five days. Officials repeatedly have said that all nuclear material was safeguarded and not threatened by the fires. ……"

Washington Post 6/13/00 Barry Massey "……Workers at Los Alamos National Laboratory were concerned Monday about the lab's image following the disappearance of nuclear secrets from a vault, the latest bad news for the birthplace of the atomic bomb. "It's lousy. This has not been a good year," said Katherine Norskog, who has worked for the lab for 15 years. "Just everybody is going, 'Oh no!'" Norskog said she worries that in the public's perception, this would be another "black eye" for the lab. ……. "

THE WASHINGTON TIMES 6/13/00 Jerry Seper "….……. FBI spokesman Steven Berry yesterday confirmed only that agents in Albuquerque were conducting a "criminal inquiry" into the missing files, in conjunction with Energy Department officials…….. The disappearance of the sensitive files was first reported by the New York Times yesterday on its Web site, noting that the hard drives were missing when investigators searched for them after the fire. ……A search of the facility by the Energy Department's new security chief, Eugene Habiger, shortly after the files were discovered to be missing turned up no information on how they disappeared or where they had gone, department officials said……. Los Alamos lab officials late in the evening of May 7 sought to secure the nuclear data from possible harm as wildfires threatened the laboratory complex, but found them missing from their containers in the vault. Three days later, Los Alamos was evacuated because of the fire threat and did not resume significant operation until May 22……The fire threat and evacuation interrupted the search, but after May 22 Los Alamos officials began "an intensive search" for the material. Still, they did not report it missing for 10 days. Mr. Habiger said the delay in reporting would be looked into as part of the investigation, but that security was maintained during the entire period of the fire threat……… On June 2, Mr. Curran brought in the FBI, and a week ago 22 FBI agents and 12 DOE investigators, led by Mr. Habiger, flew to Los Alamos for an intensive search for the material and investigate its disappearance. But officials still don't know what happened to the two drives…….Mr. Curran said the Nuclear Emergency Search Team had used the material only a week before it was discovered missing as part of an exercise at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and it has not been ruled out that the material was misplaced at that time. He said such exercises are not unusual……"

Freeper Alissa 6/13/00 "…..Sitting here in a hotel room in Chicago: The Tribune has this story on page 12!! One interesting report they've published is: ……… The hard drives contained what officials describe as nuclear weapons data used by the government's Nuclear Emergency Search Team, a unit that responds to nuclear accidents and nuclear-related threats from terroists. …….The material on the hard dives includes all of the data on American nuclear weapons that the team needs to render them safe in emergencies, officials said. In addition, the missing material included intelligence information, including some concerning the Russian nuclear weapons program, law-enforcement officials said. ……The Energy Department's new head of security, Eugene Habiger, has conducted a search at Los Alamos but did not find the data, officials said. He has written a secret report on the matter, and the FBI has been summoned to conduct a joint investigation. Officials said they remain uncertain whether the data has been misplaced or stolen. ….."

Judicial Watch 6/13/00 "…..With the recent revelations of the loss of still more nuclear secrets in Los Alamos, coming on the heels of previous debacles concerning Wen Ho Lee and others, it is time for there to be some accountability. ……..Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson, who previously narrowly escaped prosecution for being Bill Clinton's "greaser" in the Monica Lewinsky scandal (through making personal visits to her Watergate condo and offering her jobs at the U.N., obviously in exchange for keeping her mouth shut), must immediately resign and face potential prosecution for the loss of nuclear secrets. Given the Clinton-Gore Administration sympathy towards Communist China and Castro's Cuba, it is not beyond the realm of possibility that foreign or other agents were allowed into the lab and that these agents purloined these secrets. If Richardson knew or should have known that this is what occurred, he should also be indicted, just like Wen Ho Lee……….. "It is not beyond the realm of possibility that Clinton-Gore Administration officials have participated either knowingly or negligently in the compromise of U.S. national security for the benefit of foreign countries. …. "

Reuters via Iwon.com 6/13/00 Zelie Pollon "……Electronically stored classified information -- believed to include U.S. and Russian nuclear secrets -- disappeared from a vault at the Los Alamos Nuclear Laboratory last month and the FBI has launched an intense search, officials said on Monday. The lab's director, John Browne, said "classified information" was missing, but gave no details. The New York Times, which broke the story on its Web site, said the information was stored on now-missing hard drives and included U.S. and Russian nuclear secrets and other sensitive data. ……..Browne said the FBI and investigators from the Department of Energy, which operates the world-famous nuclear facility with the University of California, have been searching for missing data. "This is an extremely serious matter and we are taking swift actions to deal with it," he said in a statement. ……Ed Curran, director of the Department of Energy's Office of Counterintelligence, said, "At this point there is no evidence that suggests espionage is involved in this incident." ……"

Reuters via Iwon.com 6/13/00 Zelie Pollon "……At issue are two hard drives that contained information on how to disarm and safely dismantle U.S., Russian and other nuclear devices, The Washington Post reported in its Tuesday edition. It said the two identical hard drives were stored in a suitcase in the vault and belonged to an Energy Department emergency response team that is prepared to rush to any site where the government believes a nuclear bomb might be planted. ……Browne said a major effort was under way to find the missing electronically stored data and it was not known if they were just misplaced, stolen or inadvertently destroyed. ………NBC News reported the hard drives were first discovered to be missing two months ago, before the Los Alamos wildfire that forced the lab to shut down on May 8. The lab was closed for two weeks, with only a skeleton crew on hand. But lab spokesman John Gustafson said the hard drives were discovered missing "sometime in May." "It was in the course of everyday work. Somebody needed something in there and they discovered them (the drives) missing," he told reporters. Gustafson declined to elaborate, except to say the person involved was a staff member with clearance for the area where the drives were stored. ......... "

MSNBC.Com 6/12/00 Robert Windrem, Pete Williams, Jim Miklaszewski and Andrea Mitchell, MSNBC's Tom Curry and The AP "……..The embarrassing discovery of the missing data, coming on the heels of espionage disclosures and a devastating wildfire at the laboratory, kicked off a top-level investigation, officials disclosed Monday. SENIOR U.S. OFFICIALS told NBC News that the missing secrets include America's plans for countering nuclear terrorism - and that, if they fall into the wrong hands, it could be devastating. The secret material was contained in hard drives and discs in containers in a vault in Los Alamos' most highly classified area, the so-called "X Division," where designers of nuclear weapons do their work. …..A senior U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told NBC's Robert Windrem that the Energy Department has provided details of the missing material to the CIA for "technical assistance" and "damage assessment." Asked how he would describe the potential loss if the materials were found to have fallen into unfriendly hands, the official said: "You could say it would be devastating." ...... "The indicators [of espionage] are just not there," Ed Curran, DOE's director of counterintelligence, told the Associated Press. He noted that two identical drives, containing the same material, disappeared when someone seeking the information for espionage likely would have taken only one. More likely, he added, the drives "were either misplaced, misused or accidentally destroyed." ……. "

MSNBC.Com 6/12/00 Robert Windrem, Pete Williams, Jim Miklaszewski and Andrea Mitchell, MSNBC's Tom Curry and The AP "……..A person familiar with the status of nuclear secrets at Los Alamos told NBC's Windrem the biggest problem with the lab's security is bad record keeping. The labs, that person said, do not always know where material is at any one time. …… Los Alamos officials were sure the information had been in place in March, a month before it was noticed missing, Windrem reported. They then began a search for it, but did not tell federal authorities for months. On June 1, the lab informed the Energy Department of the problem. The next day, the Energy Department informed the FBI. The FBI then sent a large team out to Los Alamos to begin the investigation. At the same time, the CIA was brought in for assistance. ……..The Energy Department's new security chief, retired Air Force Gen. Eugene Habiger, told the Associated Press that it is too early to determine what happened to the two hard drives. But he said he has not ruled out the possibility that the materials might have been misplaced or destroyed during the confusion last month caused by the threat from the fire that destroyed much of the community of Los Alamos. …….However, an FBI official told NBC's Pete Williams that blaming the confusion over the missing data on the fire was similar to saying "the dog ate my homework." The official said it was an excuse, and the information was missing well before the fire. …….. "Nonetheless," Ebel added, "one must wonder about security at government facilities today, whether at Los Alamos or at the Department of State. Is it just a run of bad luck, that materials - and laptops - have been just misplaced? Or are we being taken to the cleaners by foreign intelligence operations?" …….. A key senator called Monday for a congressional investigation into the missing material. "When people treat items of a highly classified nature just like it's ordinary stuff, something's wrong," Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., chairman of the Senate intelligence committee, told NBC News. …….. …."

Washington Post 6/13/00 Walter Pincus "…..Eugene Habiger, a retired general who was named to the new post of Energy "security czar" in the wake of the Wen Ho Lee case, spent last week in Los Alamos heading up the search for the missing hard drives. He said yesterday he believes they were probably misplaced or lost rather than stolen. Nonetheless, he said, the FBI was called in shortly after the loss was reported by Los Alamos on June 1…….. "This is an extremely serious matter and we are taking swift actions to deal with it," the laboratory's director, John Browne, said yesterday in a written statement……… According to senior officials, the Energy Department's Nuclear Emergency Search Team (NEST), based at Los Alamos, keeps three suitcases with classified information in a vault at the lab's high-security X Division, which is responsible for nuclear weapons design. As wildfires swept toward Los Alamos last month, one of the suitcases was removed from the vault to ensure that it would be available in the event of an emergency. The fact that the hard drives were missing was discovered on that day, May 7. But Los Alamos employees did not formally notify the Energy Department's headquarters in Washington until June 1, according to Edward Curran, the department's chief of counterintelligence…….. The suitcase that contained the missing hard drives was last used in a NEST exercise at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California during the first three days of May, but there is confusion about whether the hard drives were taken to Livermore at that time, one official said……. "

New York Times 6/13/00 James Risen "…... The data on the hard drives includes all the information on American nuclear weapons that the team needs to render the nuclear devices safe in emergencies, officials said. Among the missing material was intelligence information concerning the Russian nuclear weapons program, law enforcement officials said. Officials are uncertain whether the data has been misplaced or stolen. It was also unclear whether the loss of the data would have any effect on the NEST team's ability to do its job. ……… An F.B.I. spokesman, John Collingwood, added that the investigation was a "fully cooperative one" between the F.B.I. and the Energy Department and was "being conducted very aggressively." …….. Still, the disappearance of the nuclear weapons data represents a major embarrassment for a laboratory that has spent the last year under scrutiny for security lapses in connection with the Wen Ho Lee case. …….Congress later passed legislation creating a nuclear weapons agency within the Energy Department to oversee Los Alamos and the nation's other nuclear weapons laboratories. Gen. John A. Gordon of the Air Force, who has been serving as the deputy director of central intelligence, has been nominated to head the new agency, the National Nuclear Security Administration. ...... Los Alamos officials recognized the potential political damage the new incident could cause. "I'm clearly very disappointed and dismayed that this happened," Dr. Browne said in an interview. "To have this happen after all that we have done to improve security, and after the fire, is a real blow to the institution, and we need to find a way to get everybody back together and recover from it."…….. There was disagreement within the government today over how quickly laboratory officials had notified the Energy Department and the F.B.I. about the disappearance of the hard drives. Energy Department officials said they notified the F.B.I. as soon as they discovered that the material was missing. …….. But some law enforcement officials said it was possible that some officials at the lab were aware that the data was missing long before informing Washington. Dr. Browne said today that the timing of when people within the laboratory were first aware of the disappearance of the data was now under investigation. "We're still trying to determine the time lines, but I can't go into that at this point," he said. …….The incident at Los Alamos is just the latest in a series of security problems that have plagued the government recently. This spring, the State Department acknowledged that a laptop computer packed with classified information had disappeared from the department's headquarters. …… Separately, the Justice Department has started a criminal investigation into evidence that John M. Deutch, former Central Intelligence director, placed classified information on unclassified computers in his home, potential violations of both C.I.A. regulations and federal law. ….."

Investor's Business Daily 6/14/00 "…..Has any other administration topped this one in carelessness? Last month, U.S. officails almost burned down the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Now nuclear secrets from that lab are missing. The Energy Department appears to have learned nothing from the Wen Ho Lee case, in which warhead design data drom the Los Alamos lab wound up in China. ……Energy Department officials say this latest security lapse was noted more than a month ago. That's right: Hard drives with secrets on how to disarm nuclear bombs vanished, and our government didn't tell us for a month. …..The administration still offers no real information on what happened - just public relations pabulum. ….."

Los Angeles Times 6/16/00 Robert Scheer "…… Truth is, there haven't been any really good nuclear secrets to steal for some time, not since the Soviets exploded their first bomb half a century ago. After they, and the Chinese soon after, proved that they could play catch-up in the city-buster business, there really hasn't been much that's new. Once you can blow up a few million civilians, what else is a nuclear weapon to do? The only legitimate work of the labs now is to make certain that the existing nuclear stockpiles throughout the world are safe, and that is information that the U.S. should be sharing freely with other nations that have such weapons. ......,, That there are no secrets is hard for the weapons labs to admit to the public because it threatens their cachet not to mention their funding. And as long as the Cold War was on, the Pentagon could sustain the notion of a nuclear war-fighting scenario. Better weapons and delivery systems were needed to withstand an enemy first-strike with a survivable retaliatory power. ..... But that scenario is absurd in an era when our nuclear predominance is such that an effective first-strike against this nation simply is not plausible. …..The nuclear weapons, labs should be shut down, for they serve no other purpose than to alarm Congress and distract it from the serious purpose of stopping the proliferation of nuclear material throughout the world; We no longer have any need for advanced nuclear weaponry, and the secrets of their design have become tokens of power useful only to excite us when some evil tribe is presumed to have stolen them. ……"

chblue.com 6/15/00 Jim Burns "……Republicans on Capitol Hill were downright mad. Democrats, while not criticizing Energy Secretary Bill Richardson directly, were disappointed as well. The reason: Richardson had been invited to testify about the loss of national security information at the Los Alamos, New Mexico national laboratory and never showed up. …….. However, fussing and fuming was all that members of the Joint Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and Energy and Natural Resources could do Wednesday, since Richardson had been invited to testify, not subpoenaed. ……"

Newsmax.com 6/15/00 Dan Frisa "……Besieged Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, seemingly sapped of all energy himself, should be packing his things into cardboard boxes over at the Energy Department on his way out the door. Yesterday at a Senate hearing into the latest unforgivable breach of our national security at the Los Alamos nuclear laboratory, Richardson was AWOL - nowhere to be found! He sent underlings in his place because, it now turns out, he was attending a photo opportunity touting yet another investigation into lax security in his department. ……… We've been down this road before with the secretary after the previous pilfering of our national nuclear secrets, when he assured everyone that measures had been put into place to prevent future such occurrences. So much for his word, and so much for his incompetence. ……. The time is now for the president, who has been uncharacteristically silent on the issue, to fire Richardson. The time is long past for tolerating such incompetence, which has had a devastating impact on our national security. There is no reason, no justification, and no purpose to do anything less than summarily dismiss the energy secretary. …"

Reuters via Yahoo! 6/14/00 "……At least one place in the nation's capital gave Energy Secretary Bill Richardson a warm reception on Wednesday, and even awarded him a prize for safeguarding the nation's nuclear technology. While Republican lawmakers were demanding his resignation over the Energy Department's missing computer hard drives with nuclear weapons secrets, Richardson received a standing ovation from several hundred business executives at a conference on energy efficiency. ……The group declared Richardson the winner of an award for his work to increase oil production, reduce greenhouse gases and safeguard nuclear technologies. …… Just a few blocks away on Capitol Hill, furious Republicans blasted Richardson for losing track of the hard drives with classified information that had been locked in a vault in the Los Alamos nuclear laboratory. Richardson acknowledged that Wednesday was ``not one of my best days'' when he addressed the annual energy efficiency forum sponsored by companies that make products for improving technology and lessening energy usage. ……To make matters worse, Richardson failed to show at congressional hearings on Wednesday, giving Republican leaders more ammunition. ……``Apparently Secretary Richardson has decided there's something more important to do than account to the American people,'' said Alabama Republican Sen. Richard Shelby, who chaired a joint hearing of the energy and intelligence panels. ….."

WorldNetDaily 6/15/00 Paul Sperry "….."The incident at Los Alamos is just the latest in a series of security problems that have plagued the government recently," the New York Times reported. The government? Please, Americans aren't blind. Unlike the Mr. Magoos in the mainstream media, they can see a pattern has developed over the past seven-and-a-half years of the Clinton administration. ...... Security breaches have spread to every federal agency dealing with national security secrets, from Commerce to Energy's nuclear weapons labs to the Pentagon to State and to even the CIA. …… Yet they are all brushed off by Clinton officials as isolated incidents. And the trumpeting strumpets in the prestige press go right along with the melody, suspending their trademark skepticism. ……But make no mistake: These aren't accidents. Career officials in the U.S. intelligence community say privately that the Clinton administration came in and ordered a wholesale stand-down of national security safeguards in every agency that counts. The Clinton administration, not "the government," has turned our national security complex into a sieve. And the holes just keep getting bigger -- and the espionage apparently bolder. …….But it wasn't an inside job, administration officials say; no spies here! Must have been "misplaced" or "destroyed." Yeah, an absent-minded scientist left them on his dashboard along with his Blockbuster rentals and wants to avoid the lab fine of returning melted tapes. Give me a break. Such mind-numbing excuses are typical of an administration that thinks we're all a bunch of Hottentots ready to be colonized. What's shocking is that the establishment East Coast media keep chugging the swill. …..

WorldNetDaily 6/15/00 Paul Sperry "….."Few, if any, mainstream stories on the latest Los Alamos leak so far have mentioned the findings of the bipartisan Cox Commission report. Just a year ago, it documented how China's People's Liberation Army stole from Los Alamos and other labs secrets to every warhead deployed in the U.S. arsenal. …….And the massive Chinese espionage has bunched up hard on Clinton's watch. Eight of the 11 cases cited in the Cox report took place during the Clinton years, as I first reported in a June 9, 1999, IBD story (which was later excerpted by L. Brent Bozell III in the Wall Street Journal). And 10 of the 11 leaks were first discovered then. (I gleaned this from just the 872-page declassified version of the Cox report. An additional 375 or so pages were censored by the White House. No telling what horrors lurk in there.) ...... Nor has the media bothered to add that "Taiwanese American scientist Wen Ho Lee" -- who's in jail now for downloading Los Alamos nuke codes on 10 portable tapes (seven of which are missing) -- has traveled extensively in China in recent years, giving lectures (and who knows what else) to PLA nuclear physicists. …… By reporting all this parade of security lapses in fits and starts and not putting them into any broader context, the media is doing a disservice to the American people. ……Reporting each new leak without any linkage has the effect (perhaps desired) of desensitizing, rather than shocking, us...."

WorldNetDaily 6/15/00.R. Nyquist "……The only problem is, when vital secrets were stolen from Los Alamos last month, the incident was not reported for more than three weeks. How did that happen? ...... Bureaucrats are remarkably adaptive. They watch their bosses and realize that safety is found in imitation, which is the sincerest form of flattery. The entire chain of command leading up to the president, excepting Secretary Richardson (who is relatively new to his job), is notorious for delaying the transmission of bad news regarding U.S. security problems. ……Take the case of successful Chinese espionage, discovered in 1995. According to the Cox Report, "The Department of Energy briefed the Secretary of Energy about the matter in late 1995 and early 1996." ……But Richardson's predecessor did not order his department to brief the FBI, the Attorney General or the president's National Security Advisor until April 1996. After that, National Security Advisor Sandy Berger waited until July 1997 to brief President Clinton. In each case, an interval far greater than three weeks was involved. ......,Why does something as important as successful Chinese espionage against the nation's nuclear weapons labs go unreported to the president for 18 months? And why did it go unreported to the National Security Advisor for three to four months? ......"

WorldNetDaily 6/15/00.R. Nyquist "……There is a possible answer to this question, which is suggested by something the Cox Committee discovered while its report was being declassified. Berger had originally testified that he'd only briefed the president on the theft of U.S. nuclear information in early 1998. Then, suddenly, he had a different recollection -- that Clinton had been told in July 1997. …….. It's always of interest when a Clinton administration official changes his testimony. As everyone knows, the president is ultimately responsible for everything that happens in the Executive Branch. If the president wasn't told, the president cannot be blamed. Therefore, it is a good thing for Clinton if his underlings do not tell him about certain problems. This would only make sense, of course, if Clinton doesn't care about fixing these problems. In this context, we need to ask a couple of pointed questions. If Berger withheld vital intelligence from the president for 18 months, wouldn't the president be furious? So why wasn't Sandy Berger fired? ………. Now this is an intriguing question, and it goes directly to the heart of all our security problems. People in Congress may be angry with Secretary Richardson at the moment, but the problem with security at our labs begins and ends with the president himself. ……."

WorldNetDaily 6/15/00.R. Nyquist "……As much as some people would like to lay all the blame for security lapses on Energy Secretary Richardson, American culture and President Clinton are the real culprits. In all probability Clinton knew about the theft of the W-88 warhead from the outset. He just wanted an excuse for not taking action -- for not ordering an investigation. And Sandy Berger provided that excuse by initially telling Congress that the president hadn't been informed until 1998. Afterwards Clinton realized that this wouldn't fly and Berger amended his story, suddenly remembering that he'd told Clinton in July 1997. ......There is an additional question -- which is very disturbing -- that we have to ask about Clinton's behavior. Why did Clinton do nothing, until prompted by Congress, about major Chinese espionage against our weapons labs? ………. Perhaps we should use our imaginations a little. In fact, we should supplement our imaginations by recounting what happened with regard to an earlier investigation into espionage at our nuclear weapons labs. ......,, Peter Lee is mentioned by name in the Cox Report as a Taiwanese-born scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory who was convicted of espionage in 1997. When the Justice Department's handling of this case came under congressional scrutiny last April, Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., ran into a brick wall. Janet Reno's Justice Department was "stonewalling" his investigation of the case. ……… Well, it may sound absolutely incredible, but here's the punchline. The sentencing of Peter Lee was held on March 26, 1998. Lee got a five-year suspended sentence and 12 months in a halfway house. And he also got a fine. What does all this signify? It only goes to show the kind of man we have in the White House and the kind of signals he gives to his underlings. As the old saying goes, "a fish rots from the head."......"

Washington Post 6/12/00 Walter Pincus "….. The Senate has paved the way for the Energy Department's nuclear weapons laboratories to aid Pentagon research into a new low-yield nuclear weapon that could destroy hardened and deeply buried targets by penetrating far into the ground before exploding. The purpose of the study is to develop "a deep penetrator that could hold at risk a rogue state's deeply buried weapons or Saddam Hussein's bunker without torching Baghdad," said one former senior Pentagon official who is still involved in government military and intelligence research…….. The most recent modernization of a U.S. strategic nuclear weapon, the B-61 thermonuclear bomb, took place in the early 1990s. At that time the bomb, which has a variety of yields above 50 kilotons (or 50,000 tons of TNT, more than three times the power of the Hiroshima bomb), was given an earth-penetrating capability great enough to destroy "a garden variety underground bunker, 100 meters into solid rock," the former official said. "What's needed now is something that can threaten a bunker tunneled under 300 meters of granite without killing the surrounding civilian population," he said……."

 

New York Times 6/17/00 James Risen "….Officials were highly skeptical of the circumstances surrounding the recovery because the area where the hard drives were found had already been closely searched twice, by the F.B.I. and the Energy Department……. Officials said the F.B.I. was intensifying its criminal investigation of the security breach, one of several at the laboratory in recent years. The bureau is trying to determine why the hard drives were removed from a secured vault and how they could have ended up behind a photocopier. "They were recovered under very questionable circumstances," a senior law enforcement official said. …..Another official said: "It seems like a lot of inconsistencies here. All of a sudden these things appear, in a place that had been searched twice." ……"

New York Times 6/17/00 James Risen "….While the discovery of the hard drives seemed to suggest a mundane explanation for their disappearance, officials emphasized that it was too soon to draw strong conclusions about what had happened. Some officials speculated that the person who took the drives might have panicked in the face of a major investigation and dropped them behind the copying machine in the last day or so. Yet the intense scrutiny the case by the F.B.I. could make it difficult to maintain such a cover-up for long. ……. "

CNN 6/16/00 "…..It was not known whether the disks ever left the building. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said investigators are looking into "inconsistencies" surrounding the whereabouts of the device. …… The FBI has examined the drives for fingerprints and they were to be examined electronically on Saturday to determine absolutely whether they are those that are missing, and whether they had been tampered with or the contents copied, said an official who spoke on condition of anonymity. ……. Despite their safe recovery, Richardson said Friday afternoon he would continue an investigation into the matter, and he promised disciplinary action would result. Investigators are treating the area where the drives were found as a crime scene, and Richardson said "their authenticity" was still being evaluated. …..Several members of the House Commerce Committee sent Richardson a letter Friday calling for the department to terminate the lab's operating contract with the university. The letter noted that "virtually every loss of weapons information at Los Alamos has involved lab employees," and that the employees were most likely responsible for the misplaced hard drives. "It is time for the department to take charge of the Los Alamos National Laboratory," the members wrote. "We believe that it is no longer in the 'best interests of the government' to continue with the University of California as the management and operating contractor."

UPI 6/16/00 Paul Singer "…….House Republicans Friday fired off a new round of questions for Energy Secretary Bill Richardson about the loss of nuclear secrets at Los Alamos lab, noting that the lab got a superior rating from Energy Department security auditors less than a year ago…….. In the wake of security concerns -- including allegations of possible espionage at Los Alamos -- Richardson last year launched independent security audits of all of the Energy Department's national labs. In a September 1999 press release, DOE reported that Los Alamos "received an overall 'satisfactory' rating -- the highest achievable." The release continued: "In particular, Los Alamos has established more effective measures in cyber security, improved protection of classified parts, installed additional intrusion alarm sensors, improved systems to account for nuclear materials, and added additional protective force personnel."……… A release issued by the lab itself regarding the same audit quotes the auditor as saying the Los Alamos audit was "the best review we've ever done. ... The most impressive inspection that we've ever had."……. Given the discovery of missing hard drives, Sensenbrenner asked Friday "Are you satisfied that there are not additional security issues at Los Alamos that the September 1999 security review missed?"……"

Salt Lake Tribune 6/16/00"…… Energy Secretary Bill Richardson and the department's counterintelligence chief Edward Curran don't think spies are behind the disappearance of more nuclear secrets from the Los Alamos National Laboratory. "There is no evidence that espionage is involved," says Curran. "The indicators just aren't there." …… A typically thorough job by the DOE gang. Because no Chinese cigarette was found burning in an ashtray, they have ruled out espionage. The fact is, while they are praying that spies weren't involved, they have no idea what happened to two small computer hard drives filled with plans for disarming nuclear bombs. …… One might have expected the DOE to take a little more care after last year's trouble, but as the Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board reported last summer, the agency has mishandled the nation's nuclear secrets for 20 years. China built its first neutron bomb in the 1980s using stolen U.S. secrets, then improved the design with information filched in 1995. ……."

YAHOO News Hong Cong 6/17/00 AFP "…..Suspicion reigned Saturday among US federal investigators probing the disappearance of two sensitive computer hard drives from the nation's premier nuclear weapons laboratory. ….."The hard drives were found in what appeared to be questionable circumstances," said an official familiar with the probe, who wanted to remain unidentified. "All possibilities will be addressed as to what transpired, how the drives disappeared and suddenly they're found," the official added. ……Since the disappearance of the disks on May 7, the area had been twice thoroughly swept by Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Energy Department security agents, with the searches producing no results, The New York Times reported Saturday. …… A team of computer specialists arrived at Los Alamos late Friday to analyze the hard drives and determine their authenticity. ……. But parts of the facility were being treated as a crime scene Saturday, as the FBI pressed ahead with its investigation into whether the secrets stored on the drives had been compromised…….More than 60 FBI agents have been dispatched to the laboratory to get to the bottom of the incident……. As many as 86 people have been recently inside the super-secret Los Alamos vault, but only 26 of them were cleared to visit the storage area alone, according to US media reports. …….Three people have already flunked the polygraph exams, The Times reported Saturday……."Given the history of security and counterintelligence lapses at our national laboratories over the last few years, I am terribly upset by the attitudes toward security within the Department of Energy have not improved," Goss stressed……."

Washington Post 6/18/00 Walter Pincus "…..In January 1993, just two weeks before the end of the Bush administration, an executive order extended the new rules to government contractors that handle national security information classified as secret, including the University of California, which operates the Los Alamos lab. They no longer were required to maintain registers listing who had possession of each secret document, nor label each document so that it could be immediately traced. The changes were intended to streamline bureaucracy and reduce the cost of handling the enormous number of classified documents generated by the government and defense contractors. Stringent accounting has remained in effect, however, for documents classified "top secret," which cannot be removed from secure areas…….. ."

RNC 6/15/00 "…….Following revelations in the spring of 1999 that the breakdown of security at the Department of Energy's (DOE) National Laboratories had seriously endangered national security, Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson repeatedly assured Congress that he would move aggressively to ensure that the nation's nuclear secrets were protected: * "Since my appointment as Secretary of Energy, no mission has been more important to me than improved counterintelligence and security at the Department's national laboratories. In the 8 months since my appointment, these safeguards of our national secrets have been dramatically strengthened and improved." (Bill Richardson, Testimony before the House Science Committee, May 20, 1999)

RNC 6/15/00 "…….However, the announcement by Los Alamos National Laboratory that two computer hard drives containing extremely sensitive information regarding nuclear weapons were missing and could not be accounted for demonstrate that, despite Richardson's rhetorical assurances, the new security procedures at DOE remain grossly inadequate. The loss of the computer hard drives followed a glowing review of the security procedures at Los Alamos conducted by DOE's Office of Performance Assurance and Independent Oversight, which termed the inspection: "The best review we've ever done. . .the most impressive inspection that we've ever had." (Los Alamos, News Release, September 20, 1999) DOE even put out a press release trumpeting the results. (DOE, News Release, September 20, 1999).

RNC 6/15/00 "……Neglecting His Duties. Richardson's recent refusal to testify before Congress was part of a pattern of noncompliance. On May 31, 2000, Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-WI), Chairman of the House Committee on Science which overseas DOE's National Laboratories and to whom Richardson had pledged complete cooperation in 1999, was forced to send a letter to Richardson demanding that he fully answer questions the Committee had sent him a year previously, following his testimony before the Committee on May 20, 1999: "I am writing to express my strong disappointment and deep concern with your failure to answer all of the questions the Committee sent to you following your testimony at the Science Committee hearing, "Security at the Department of Energy: Who's Protecting the Nation's Secrets," on Thursday, May 20, 1999. The Committee sent these questions a year ago (June 3, 1999), and yet still awaits responses to the problems with security at Department of Energy (DOE) and steps taken to fix those problems...[H]ow can DOE assure the Committee and the public that DOE has corrected these systemic security lapses threatening our national security when you are unable to answer basic questions about DOE security posed by the Committee last year?" (Rep. James Sensenbrenner, Chairman of the House Committee on Science, Letter to Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson from, May 31, 2000)

Washington Post 6/18/00 Chris Roberts "….But Chris Mechels, a former Los Alamos scientist who had the highest security clearance before he retired in 1994, says there's another problem to overcome: Everything nuclear is "born classified."…….. He said less information should be classified and the protection of the items that remain classified should be intensified. "I consider the security too lax. They treat security like a . . . joke," he said. If the classification system were more discerning, he said, "maybe, just maybe, then you could get people to take classification more seriously." Others say lab security will always come down to a simple bottom line: Can you trust the people who work there?…… "We could put the best physical security envelope in place today, but if the individual does not live up to the authority and responsibility they were given, there can be a breach," said Gene Tucker, deputy director of security at Los Alamos……"

CBSNEWS 6/17/00 "……Federal investigators say the two computer hard drives that mysteriously turned up at a top-secret government lab Friday have the identical markings of the two missing disks that contain nuclear bomb secrets………. CBS News Correspondent Jim Stewart reports federal agents say there are no obvious signs of tampering and that tests are being made to determine whether anyone tried to take data from the disks. ….CBS News Correspondent Sharyl Attkisson reports the Energy Department rushed out the announcement late Friday afternoon…….. The area had been searched twice before, and FBI agents are very certain they searched behind the copying machine as well. ……Eleven of the 86 people with access to the disks have already been tested and agents determined that some might have knowledge that the drives were missing for longer than admitted to. …….But sources tell CBS News that, in fact, the disks may have been missing since January. ……."

CBSNEWS 6/17/00 "……Earlier Friday, prominent Democratic leaders on the Commerce Committee sent a letter to Richardson demanding that the Energy Department take control of the Los Alamos lab away from the University of California. "We, along with many others in the Congress, have been astounded by the latest loss of nuclear weapons information," the letter read. "It is clear to us that the University of California...is incapable of carrying out its contractual obligations. Despite all of your strong actions, the workplace culture has not changed." …….."

ABCNEWS 6/17/00 "…..Some 60 FBI agents and computer experts are examining the two computer hard drives recovered at Los Alamos National Laboratory, hoping to learn if the nuclear secrets on them were compromised…….A lab employee using a photocopier in the area noticed the drives hidden behind the machine and told authorities, government officials said. Officials say the disks were found in an area searched twice previously, suggesting that they may have been surreptitiously placed there in the interim……. "The intensity of the investigation is not going to lessen until the whereabouts of the disks from when they disappeared and until when they were recovered can be accounted for," said a Justice Department official. "It's still serious for us to know how this happened and the circumstances. And it still would point to the likelihood of human error or misjudgment," said Rick Malispina, press spokesman for the University of California, which manages the lab and is continuing its own investigation into the disappearance....... If the disks were compromised, no terrorist could design a weapon of mass destruction too readily from scratch, sources say. But he could hire people with the appropriate knowledge and skills and give them the blueprints. ……."

TBO.com 6/17/00 H Josef Hebert "……. Authorities hoped to know by late Saturday whether the two drives definitely are the same ones that disappeared and, after an electronic examination, learn whether the contents have been copied or otherwise tampered with, said one official, speaking on condition of anonymity. ……..At least a half-dozen Los Alamos scientists - among 26 people with free access to the vault where the devices had been kept - have been given polygraph tests and some answers have raised suspicions among investigators, according to government sources. ……."It raises more questions about security than it answers," said Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee. "The hard drives were apparently discovered in an area that had been previously searched, raising the strong possibility that they were returned to the site after being stolen." ……..Rep. Porter Goss, R-Fla, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee called the missing drives "a major security failure" that had "potentially devastating" consequences if the information were compromised. The CIA has been asked to make an assessment of potential harm. …."

Rueters 6/16/00"……. Two computer hard drives containing nuclear secrets which went missing at the U.S. nuclear laboratory at Los Alamos, causing a security alarm, have been found at the lab, the Energy Department said Friday. "The hard drives missing at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico have been located," it said in a statement. ….."

Associated Press Writer 6/16/00 Deborah Baker "…..It was good news, but not surprising news, to people in Los Alamos when they heard that missing computer hard drives from Los Alamos National Laboratory were found behind a lab copying machine. ''It's very understandable. I could have done it myself,'' lab employee Albert Charmatz said as he was leaving work late Friday. ''If you're going out to copy classified material ... and you're in a hurry, I can see laying it aside and it falls off the back,'' Charmatz said, especially if it happened right before May 8, when the lab was evacuated because of a raging wildfire. The lab was reopened May 22. ……"

Freeper ohmlaw 00 "….. I just read the MSNBC article and noted that some of the lab employees put on leave were working with Russian government officials and scientists to improve security at Russian nuclear weapon facilities. This is the first confirmation I have seen that there is direct association with a Tier-3 or "sensitive" country...(I would still like to give them the benefit of the doubt until the guilty party comes forward or is caught. )……….. Regardless of whether a breach of security has occurred, if it becomes clear that these disks were mishandled by an employee of the lab who participated in the controversial technology exchange programs with the Russians, a full-scale investigation of the entire program will be warranted. The GAO and Cox Report references above point out that Los Alamos was not a secure environment, yet they continued to elevate the program w/o tightening security...Congress needs to start talking about killing the Lab to Lab programs with Russia and China now!......These programs cannot exist in such an unsecure environment......

MANAGERS PUT ON LEAVE

Six managers at the Los Alamos National Laboratory were placed on paid leave this week in connection with the missing nuclear data.

Neither the lab nor the Department of Energy would comment on the action or identify the individuals. But the New York Times on Thursday identified three of them as Stephen Younger, head of the lab's nuclear weapons programs; Carol Mangeng, deputy associate laboratory director for nuclear weapons; and Jon Weisheit, director the laboratory's X Division, which designs nuclear weapons. It also said the team leader of NEST, who was not identified, was suspended.

Sources told NBC News that several of those placed on leave had been involved in U.S. efforts over the past decade to help Russia improve security for its nuclear weapons.

Freeper Nita Nuprez "…..Vaults at Los Alamos are protected by coded locks, palm-recognition devices and other security mechanisms. There are no cameras recording visitors to the vaults because transmissions can be intercepted. Moreover, there are no sign-out requirements for removing material. …….Every news report I've heard thus far says they're concentrating on those 26 people who have the most access, as if they are the only ones who could get in. ……. Many federal agencies (Army, FAA, GAO) contracted out their Y2K IV&V work (Independent Validation and Verification). I ranted and raved about this because of all the Chinese nationals that work for a lot of these companies, especially Primeon. ……I may be wrong, but it seems like all it would have taken would be some "backdoors" on the source code of those "coded locks, palm-recognition devices and other security mechanisms" to gain access to the vaults. ……"

AP 1/4/00 "……The Federal Aviation Administration failed to conduct security checks on dozens of foreigners hired to fix Y2K problems in sensitive computer systems used for air traffic control, congressional investigators said Tuesday. The General Accounting Office, the investigative arm of Congress, said it found the FAA had violated its own security policies by allowing its contractors' foreign employees, who had not received background checks, to be involved in repairing 15 of 153 critical computer systems. ……Citizens of Ukraine, Pakistan, Britain and Ethiopia were given access without proper checks, as well as 36 Chinese who performed Y2K reviews on eight critical systems, including one involved in air-to-ground communications. ….."

Apbonline 10/1/99James Gordon Meek "……Facing what it says is a potential computer intrusion threat, the FBI's National Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC) is warning that Israel and India may use Y2K bug repairs to plant secret gateways inside U.S. computer systems that can be later used to exploit sensitive information. A top CIA official assigned to the NIPC declared in a published article that government or industrial forces from the two nations may have already infiltrated systems under the guise of repairing the Y2K problems. ……..CIA analyst Terrill D. Maynard wrote in the NIPC's publication, Infrastructure Protection Digest, that many U.S. companies and government agencies seeking last-minute fixes to computers have often hired untested foreign programmers to fix year 2000 glitches. "The use of untested foreign sources for Y2K remediation has created a unique opportunity for foreign countries or companies to access and disrupt sensitive national security and proprietary information," Maynard wrote. He named India and Israel as "likely sources of malicious remediation." ……"

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May 11, 1998 -- One source of top engineers and computer scientists for U.S. companies is Tsinghau--the East China Engineering Institute--known in academic circles as the MIT of China. In fact, more than half of the 50 computer scientists and engineers at Primeon, a Year 2000 services company based in Burlington, Massachusetts, are part of the class of 1977……..That was the year China reopened its university system after the 10-year-long Cultural Revolution, and hundreds of thousands of applicants flooded the university system. At that time, universities turned away even the best and the brightest. During a normal year, one in 10,000 applicants gets accepted, but in 1977 about one in 100,000 were accepted after competing in a national standardized test. Fred Wang, now chief architect at Primeon, returned from working as a rice farmer during the revolution to graduate first in the class of 1977 with a computer engineering degree from Tsinghau. (The class actually matriculated in 1978 and graduated in 1982.)……"

 

CNSNews.com 6/19/00 Bruce Sullivan "…….. Edward Curran, director of the Energy Department's Office of Counterintelligence said on CBS' Face the Nation that "several contradictory statements" were made by people with access to the hard drives, which "tend to indicate they had some knowledge" of the circumstances surrounding the computer equipments disappearance last month and inexplicable resurfacing last Friday behind a photocopier in a secure area of the lab known as Division X………."There are contradictory statements being made and there are several people involved" with access to the hard drives, Curran said. "We were not even notified of this for three weeks. That in itself is a major violation of the rules."…….. The Federal Bureau of Investigation is treating Division X as a crime scene, said Curran. When asked if espionage could be ruled out at this time, Curran answered "absolutely not."……. "I believe there has been no espionage. It doesn't appear the disks left the division," said Richardson…….."

MSNBC 6/19/00 "……. Two employees at Los Alamos National Laboratory "flunked" lie detector tests administered by FBI experts, sources told NBC News on Monday. The two, both of whom worked in the lab's highly restricted "X section," were in Washington on Monday for additional tests and questioning about the disappearance of computer hard drives containing nuclear secrets. …….. WHILE ENERGY DEPARTMENT officials stress there is no evidence to suggest the secrets were stolen, the FBI is cointinuing to pursue the five-week-plus disappearance of the hard drives as a criminal case. …… Word that two employees were undergoing additional examination indicated that agents were narrowing the field of potential suspects. ……. Experts warned that it may not be possible to definitively determine if the nuclear secrets they contained were copied. ……. Richardson said the lab did not follow the proper notification procedures, and that he was outraged he wasn't notified about the missing secrets for about a month. When asked if he planned to fire anybody, the secretary said he would take "accountability actions." He declined to rule out replacing the University of California, which has managed the Los Alamos lab for more than 50 years. "In a few days, 'We will know what happened,' " Richardson predicted. ……"

MSNBC 6/19/00 "……. Even though espionage may not have been involved, key congressional intelligence committee members said the incident was an inexcusable breach of security for which Richardson should be held personally accountable. …….Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said Richardson's explanations and defenses were "fluff and rhetoric" and he should step down. "He's not the man for the job," Shelby said on CBS' Face the Nation. ……"I don't think ... he's measured up," said Rep. Porter Goss, R-Fla., chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, on NBC, adding that Richardson should consider quitting. Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., also on the intelligence panel, said Richardson should quit. …….He said he wouldn't resign and vigorously defended his record at increasing security at the lab. "I have brought massive, massive security upgrades to the lab," he said - upgrading physical security with armed guards, and computer security with procedures that stop classified information from being transferred to unclassified computers, as well as introducing polygraph tests. ……"

MSNBC 6/19/00 "……. Even before the drives were found, officials played down the likelihood that the information on them could be used by terrorists to build a nuclear bomb. "The long pole in the tent - the most critical part of nuclear weapons development - is the acquisition of the plutonium or highly enriched uranium," said one U.S. intelligence official. Even Iraq, after spending $80 billion on its nuclear weapons program, which included the development of a weapons design and a massive infrastructure, came away with nothing because it could not obtain or produce the plutonium or uranium it needed, the official said. ……"

Freeper abwehr 6/20/00 "….Department of Energy Inpector General 5/30/00 …… The Standard has been told that Mr Ce of Inspector General received allegations regarding the conduct of security reviews at the Department of Energy's (DOE) Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). Specifically, it was alleged that DOE Albuquerque Operations Office (Albuquerque) management changed the ratings of annual Security Surveys of LANL security operations after members of the Albuquerque Security Survey team completed the survey. It was also alleged that LANL Security Operations Division personnel were pressured by their managers to change or mitigate findings in LANL Self-Assessment reports. ……… RESULTS OF INSPECTION………

Regarding the Albuquerque Security Surveys of LANL Security Operations, we found that: · Albuquerque management changed ratings for the 1998 and 1999 surveys without providing a documented rationale for the changes; · Albuquerque management did not fully address concerns about a compromise of force-on-force exercise during the 1998 Albuquerque Security Survey at LANL; and · The 1997 and some 1998 Albuquerque Security Survey work papers were destroyed contrary to Albuquerque policy on the destruction of records. As a result, there was no complete record to show how ratings were developed by the survey teams. Regarding the LANL Security Operations' Self-Assessments reports, we found that: …….. Approximately 30 percent of the LANL Security Operations Division personnel interviewed, who had been involved in the conduct of self-assessments, believed they had been pressured to change or "mitigate" security self-assessments;

2 · Some security self-assessments required by LANL procedures were not being conducted; and · DOE's Los Alamos Area Office security staff was not performing all of the oversight responsibilities associated with the LANL Security Operations Division programs. We concluded that the processes used to develop the Albuquerque security surveys of the LANL security operations and the LANL self-assessments were inadequate. As a result, there are legitimate concerns that the overall security condition at LANL, specifically for Fiscal Years 1998 and 1999, was not being accurately reported. ……. We provided management with a number of recommendations that, if implemented, would improve the effectiveness of Albuquerque security surveys and LANL self-assessments. ……"

capitol hill Blue 6/19/00 Doug Thompson "……. A few years back, in another life, I took on a job that required frequent visits to Los Alamos, Sandia and Livermore national labs…….. Access to these labs meant acquiring a "Q" clearance from the Department of Energy. Even though I already held a Top Secret clearance from the Department of Defense, DOE required new paperwork and a new background investigation. Or at least what they claimed to be one………. The first time these government investigators interviewed people in my hometown in the mountains of Southwest Virginia, the word spread fast -- a local boy was getting into something heavy………Usually, it took anywhere from six weeks to six months for these clearances to come through, depending on the level. But the Department of Energy issued a "Q" clearance in 10 days. No investigators talked to my friends or family. No government badges were flashed in places I used to haunt. If DOE investigated anything about me, I never heard about it or saw any evidence....... My boss at the time said I shouldn't worry about it. "DOE has their own ideas about security," he said…….. A friend over at the Pentagon had another thought. "It's a joke," he said. "They give clearances to anybody."……."

capitol hill Blue 6/19/00 Doug Thompson "…….Michigan Rep. John Dingell tells even more horror stories. He says he has been told that guards at Los Alamos spend more time porking their girlfriends in the guard towers than actually keeping an eye on the many secrets housed in the labs…….. Bill Clinton, as expected, says he has "complete confidence" in his secretary. After all, he owes Richardson a lot. He was the one who tried to hire Monica Lewinsky for a United Nations job while he served as U.S. Ambassador. The fact that someone like Richardson can head the agency in charge of this nation's nuke secrets only confirms the lax security procedures of DOE……."

WorldNetDaily 6/19/00 Paul Sperry "…..The Clinton administration has long ignored an Energy Department report recommending "high fences" around the nuclear-bomb data stored on two hard drives that were lost for over a month and then found stashed behind a copier at Los Alamos National Laboratory, WorldNetDaily has learned. The classified material, known as Sigma 14 and 15, was deemed so sensitive that an internal group -- tasked with declassifying nuclear information as part of Vice President Al Gore's "reinventing government" initiative -- reversed itself when reviewing this category and urged greater protections. Suggested measures included a higher level of personnel clearance for access to the data -- re-classifying them as "Top Secret" -- and "more stringent" physical security measures at Los Alamos. Top Secret designation requires a sign-out and reporting system to ensure maximum accountability. ... The recommendations, sent in early 1997 to Energy Secretary Hazel O'Leary and the White House, were never implemented. ……..Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said Sunday he found it "incomprehensible" that there were no procedures for logging people in and out of the lab vault. …… The unclassified version of Energy's "Report of the Fundamental Classification Policy Review Group" was published Jan. 15, 1997. The group, led by former Sandia National Laboratories President Dr. Albert Narath, was tasked in 1995 with identifying technical data for declassification. …….. "

WorldNetDaily 6/19/00 Paul Sperry "…..On Dec. 7, 1993, O'Leary announced the plan for a fundamental review of classified materials -- the first in 50 years -- as part of her "Openness Initiative." ……....... "With the end of the Cold War, a review of classification policy to reflect current world conditions is in order," wrote Kenneth Baker, Energy's then-acting director of nonproliferation and national security, in a Feb. 28, 1995, memo to lab directors. ...... "It is important to determine which information no longer requires protection and should be made available to the public," Energy Undersecretary Charles Curtis said in a Feb. 13, 1995, memo to Dr. Narath. ......But the fundamental review also was required under Gore's so-called "ReGo" plan to reform government. ……… But "Recommendation No. 6" came as somewhat of a surprise. It states: "More stringent measures should be implemented for protection of" Sigma 14 and 15, among "137 topics identified as most sensitive." …….. Under the heading, "High Fences Around the Most Sensitive Information," the Narath report said: "The main effort of the review was focused on identifying information that no longer requires protection. However, our investigations led to the conclusion that ... strict, and perhaps higher levels of security be maintained around the most sensitive material." …….. The report continued: "Restricted Data not recommended for declassification, in general, warrant protective measures at least as stringent as those used today. Moreover, there exists a body of information within the Sigma 14 and 15 (nuclear weapons unauthorized use and use-control design and vulnerability assessment) categories that warrants special protection, namely: ……."

 

WorldNetDaily 6/19/00 Paul Sperry "…..The drives contained detailed technical data about U.S. nuclear weapons. They also stored drawings with weights, yields and dimensions of Russian and Chinese bombs. Investigators now say they do not store Sigma-14 information on how to actually detonate a bomb. The senior Energy official, who wished to go unnamed, says a Los Alamos classification officer told him that neither Sigma 14 or Sigma 15 data are contained on the mishandled hard drives. The official declined to say which category of information is stored on the drives. But in an interview with WorldNetDaily, Los Alamos spokesman Kevin Roark confirmed that Sigma 14 and 15 data are in fact on the drives. …… Of course, the report recommended higher "fences" for 135 highly sensitive categories besides Sigma 14 and 15. And there's no dispute that the information on the hard drives is highly sensitive. ……"

Albuquerque Journal 6/18/00 Dale Lezon "…..Recent security breaches at the Los Alamos National Laboratory have "blown away" some lab workers and retired lab scientists. ...... "I'm flabbergasted," said Marcos Trujillo, a lab human resources generalist who is on disability leave for medical reasons. "They have a two-man rule for the vault," Trujillo said. "There are only 86 people in the nation who have access to that vault. Any time you get into one of the safes (or vaults), you can't get into it alone. Two people have to manipulate the combination. I'm blown away. I know what you need to access those areas." ...... The second floor and the hallway where the copy machine is located were searched twice by law enforcement officials. FBI and lab officials are uncertain if the drives were placed behind the copier after the searches. Esther Trujillo, Marcos Trujillo's wife, works as an administrative secretary in the TAS Division on the Administration Building's fourth floor. ......She was skeptical that the drives could have been misplaced accidentally. ...,People who remove drives from a vault must keep them in their possession or lock them in a safe at all times, said Esther Trujillo. "That's not something you take with you when you go to make (photo) copies," Esther Trujillo said of the computer drives. ...... However, Esther Trujillo said that someone may have been carrying the drives, been told to leave the building because of the Cerro Grande Fire and panicked, putting them down on the copy machine and leaving quickly. ... How the drives got behind the machine she said she could not fathom, however. "It was crazy during the fire," Esther Trujillo said. ......"

Excite News/REUTERS 6/18/00 Rodd Eastham "…..Scientists at a key U.S. nuclear weapons facility have made "contradictory statements" about security breaches which suggest someone is hiding something -- either espionage or negligence that could cost them their jobs, a senior official said Sunday. Edward Curran, director of the Energy Department's Office of Counterintelligence, said "several contradictory statements made by these people (with access to two highly sensitive computer hard drives) ... tend to indicate they had some knowledge" of how and why the hard drives disappeared and then reappeared Friday under suspicious circumstances. …….. Asked if he could rule out espionage at this time, Curran said "absolutely not." He added that the FBI is treating the room where the hard drives were found "as a crime scene." ……."

WASHINGTON TIMES 6/19/00 Joyce Howard Price "……Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said yesterday the disappearance of computer hard drives containing highly classified nuclear weapons data should be blamed on the University of California and the "human element." Mr. Richardson said on NBC's "Meet the Press" "it's very clear" in the contract the University of California has with the Department of Energy that "they're in charge of security" at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico....... But the "human element" has prevented the implementation of an adequate security system at the lab, he said….. "I have to keep a balance between science and security. Security is a priority, but at the same time a lot of important scientific research has to take place and, you know, right now, I don't seem to win," he told ABC's "This Week."……"

WASHINGTON TIMES 6/19/00 Joyce Howard Price "……Sen. Jon Kyl, Arizona Republican, said Mr. Richardson should resign because he alone bears the blame since he fought the creation of a new agency to oversee nuclear security. "He chose to assume the full responsibility, to reject putting someone else in charge, to fight the creation of this new semiautonomous agency, and he said, 'Until we have a new undersecretary, I am the one in charge, and I accept full responsibility.' "Having done that, accepting full responsibility is not blaming others, as you heard him do today. It is understanding that he was the one, by his own choice, who chose to accept it, and therefore he has to bear the consequences, and I believe he ought to step down," Mr. Kyl said on NBC...."

WASHINGTON TIMES 6/19/00 Joyce Howard Price "……Mr. Shelby told "Fox News Sunday" that security breaches at federal agencies have grown into a "big malignancy that has spread anywhere in this administration." "It's not just the labs. Look at the CIA: John Deutsch, the former director, thousands of pages [of secret information] put on an unclassified computer [at his home]. The State Department breached, not once, not twice. I think it's a culture. The American people deserve better," Mr. Shelby said. Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott echoed that sentiment on ABC. "It's bigger than Bill Richardson. There's a laxity in this administration about security," said the Mississippi Republican......."

Drudge Report 6/19/00 Deb Weiss "….. "It was the human element." This was the mantra of embattled Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, trying to extinguish his own Los Alamos fires on the Sunday morning chat-shows. ……. He is (he explained) a superb administrator whose security innovations, though highly effective, were hampered by 'the human element,' as uncooperative lab employees balked at his directives. In short, the operation was a success, but the patient died. …….. With the national press running interference for him, he may ultimately get away with it. …….An arrogant, spoilt, left-leaning elite has taken power in this country, ruling largely unchallenged from the ivy-covered halls to the corridors of power. With characteristic grandiosity, they're quite certain that they are the most socially-responsible generation in human history. ………. Sheer nonsense, of course. Steeped in the neo-Marxist lore of their college days, they embrace a ruinously naive anti-Americanism. No matter how often the bitter record of history proves them wrong, they continue to believe that America is the cultural equivalent of Original Sin. ……"

USA Today via NewsMax.com 6/19/00 "……Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, once considered a front-runner among candidates for the Democratic vice presidential nomination, has seen his chances fade as a result of the controversy surrounding the Los Alamos nuclear lab and skyrocketing gasoline prices. Richardson has made no secret of his interest in becoming Vice President Gore's running mate. He has been a member of Gore's inner circle of political advisers and campaigned for him during the Democratic primaries. …….In an interview last week, Gore said he has not yet focused on his running mate and said no formal list of candidates has been compiled. However, several Democrats say Richardson had been a top contender, but now only an unexpected development could salvage his chances….."

UPI 6/19/00 Drudge "……An elite FBI computer team was examining two Los Alamos hard drives in Washington Monday to see if their nuclear secrets have been accessed. ……. The FBI's Computer Analysis Response Team, or CART, is a group of specially trained computer experts. …..Bill Carter, an FBI spokesman, said CART "will try to determine if those hard drives were accessed" for the secret information they contain, among other tests. …… Last Friday, the two hard drives were discovered underneath a copying machine in a secure area of the Los Alamos facility. The FBI has said the area was searched twice by its personnel since the beginning of the month, and there was no way that the drives could have been there all along. It was not the first time that the Los Alamos Nuclear Laboratory has been a subject of controversy. ……. "

CBN News 6/19/00 Paul Strand "……As investigators try to figure out if the nuclear secrets were compromised on those Los Alamos hard drives, congressional critics on the Sunday talk show circuit were blasting security at the Energy Department. "We've got better security at a hardware store when you lease out equipment for an afternoon," said Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) on CBS' Face the Nation……. "I don't think that he would step down, but he should step down," said Shelby (R-Ala.) on Face the Nation……. "

FOXNEWS 6/19/00"……. In Washington, D.C., the FBI continues to examine the two hard drives to determine if they are authentic, if someone has tampered with them, or if secret nuclear information has been copied. The drives were classified as "secret" as opposed to "top secret," meaning they did not have to be signed in or out when someone was reviewing them. Investigators say this is making it more difficult to determine who had them last and when they had them……."Until he steps aside, I don't have confidence that it will get any better," Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., said. The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee agrees. He says Richardson just doesn't get it. "I think it's clear. If you are in denial that the problems are still there then you shouldn't be in charge. The problems are still there. The policies have got trouble. The practices are crazy. It's unbelievable the stuff that is tolerated," Rep. Porter Goss, R-Fla., a former CIA employee, told Fox News on Monday. ……… "I don't want to give you a doomsday scenario. I can just tell you that innocent people will die a painful death," Goss said. "My greatest fear is that the information available at the labs will fall into the wrong hands and be used against us, and it is not a stretch for that to happen." But according to one computer expert, FBI investigators may never know if the information has been copied. ……. "

ABCNEWS 6/19/00 "….. Earlier reports said that the Department of Energy's investigation into the disappearances was focusing on two employees who may have lied during polygraph tests. But a law enforcement official said today that the employees may only have lied about how long the disks were missing, not who took them or how. …… The hard drives are in an FBI lab today, where scientists are searching for fingerprints and trying to determine whether data was moved or copied from the drive. FBI investigators are "fairly confident they'll be able to work it backwards" and determine what happened, he said……… But even if the culprits are found, there may be no way to know why they did it without a confession. Spies could have transferred data off the drives without experts being able to detect the transfer, ABCNEWS consultant Vincent Cannistraro told Good Morning America. "If it was accessed from a computer, yes, they can tell. But if it was a bit-for-bit transfer from one hard drive to another," it would be undetectable, he said. …….. "These are highly trusted people," Richardson stressed. …… Democratic Rep. John Dingell of Michigan, ranking member of the Commerce Committee, told Good Morning America that the problem is not with the Clinton Administration, but with spotty oversight and unreliable contractors. He has urged Richardson to cancel the government's contract with the University of California, which runs the Los Alamos labs. …….. "It is time we terminated the University of California in this ... there has been a continual reign of problems in that they have no had good security," Dingell told Good Morning America. "This has gone on in every administration," whether Democratic or Republican, he said. ……."

CNN 6/19/00 "…… FBI analysts hope to determine Monday whether two computer hard drives containing secret nuclear-weapons information were tampered with……. The hard drives were flown to Washington on Sunday for electronic analysis. ……. The number of employees whose answers were considered suspect was unclear. "I don't want to go into the exact number, because the investigation is still continuing, but it's more than two," Edward Curran, director of counterintelligence at the U.S. Department of Energy, said Sunday on CNN's Late Edition. …….Republican Sen. Jon Kyl of Arizona, an intelligence committee member, also called for Richardson to quit. "He said, 'The buck stops with me; I'm in charge,'" Kyl said. "You heard him here assuming full responsibility by blaming others. That's not the way to assume full responsibility." ……… Richardson and other officials tried to shift the blame to the University of California, which conducts research at Los Alamos and other labs under contract to the Energy Department. "They are very strong on science. They are a great institution. But on security ... they haven't done a very good job," said Richardson, who said the government might have to sever its contract with the university. …… Curran, meanwhile, said although he could not rule out espionage in the case, "There is no question in my mind this is a cultural question" in which scientists at the facility resist or resent security procedures and seek to circumvent them. …….. Curran cited efforts by researchers to avoid taking polygraph tests and, if they are forced to take them, taking steps to ensure they pass. "We know scientists scheduled to take the polygraph are preparing to defeat the polygraph," Curran said. …….. The "best-case" scenario is that the hard drives were misplaced out of negligence or inattention to security procedures and never left the secure area at Los Alamos where they were found, Curran said. Under that scenario, the scientist or scientists who misplaced them have not come forward because they are "terrified" of the consequences, he said. A breach of security could lead to lost jobs or possible criminal prosecution, even if there was no criminal intent. ……. "

YAHOO News/REUTERS 6/22/00 David Storey "…… President Clinton came to the defense of his beleaguered Energy Secretary Bill Richardson on Thursday, praising his handling of a scandal over missing data at the country's top nuclear laboratory. Asked whether he still had confidence in Richardson, who was grilled on the issue at a Senate hearing on Wednesday where Republican lawmakers called for his resignation, the president replied: ``Yes I do.'' …….He praised the work of Richardson, who has worked as trouble-shooter at home and abroad for Clinton and took over the trouble-plagued Energy Department two years ago with a brief to crack down on security lapses. ……"

Center For Security Poicy via NewsMax.com 6/19/00 "…….This climate was epitomized by Richardson's notorious predecessor, Hazel O'Leary, who declared as she announced a wholesale declassification of sensitive DOE materials, "Someone else has the job of looking more carefully at the national security interest." But it has persisted in important respects under the present secretary of energy. ...... For example, Richardson has permitted advocates of increased security to be subjected to job actions and other harassment. Former DOE security chief Ed McCallum and former counter-intelligence director Notra Trulock are among those who were effectively driven out of DOE for challenging policies and practices that have put nuclear secrets at risk of theft or other compromise. Most recently, the associate director for Los Alamos' National Security Programs, Dr. Stephen Younger, has been among those put on involuntary leave in what appears to be an effort to make him a scapegoat for the fact that Clinton appointees in DOE have prevented the implementation of security improvements he has long championed. .........Most egregious perhaps has been the long-running Richardson campaign to thwart first the creation and then the appropriate staffing of the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). Congress rejected Richardson's insistence that he remain solely "in charge" of security and the rest of the department's nuclear functions. His resistance to the establishment of such a semi-autonomous organization charged primary responsibility for managing the weapons complex has persisted, even as the early chickens unleashed by Clinton-Gore administration's DOE wrecking operation have came home to roost. In fact, until the revelation of the missing hard drives problem made his efforts unsustainable, Richardson encouraged Democratic senators to block the confirmation of NNSA's first director, Gen. John Gordon. ……."

Washington Weekly 6/19/00 Edward Zehr "…..Having worked with classified information during most of an engineering career that spanned three-and-a-half decades, a couple of things immediately caught my eye in the brief news accounts. First I would point out that when one is handling information as sensitive as this is said to be, things don't simply "vanish." There is (supposed to be) a chain of accountability that anchors the information to a person, or persons, responsible for it's safekeeping. Because access to such highly classified data is tightly restricted, it should be abundantly obvious which (small group of) people are likely to have seen it last. Given the urgency of the situation, it should not take weeks or months to determine what happened. Although 85 people are said to have had access, it seems that only 28 people were authorized to enter, unescorted, the vault where the disk- drives were kept. Presumably at least one of these people knows what happened to the missing data. The FBI is presently giving lie-detector tests to those involved, in an effort to identifythe knowledgeable one(s), much to the annoyance of everyone involved……………The other point that comes readily to mind is that, unless a person has been suddenly afflicted with a rare brain disorder that causes him to regress back to the psychological level of a mindlessly irresponsible, infantile brat, that person does not wait three weeks before informing someone in authority that the nation's nuclear secrets are missing. As annoying as it must be to be given a polygraph test under these circumstances, nobody forced any of these people to involve themselves in work that requires the safeguarding of highly sensitive classified information. Perhaps had they taken that part of the job a bit more seriously they would not have been confronted with such an irritating imposition……."

TBO.com 6/18/00 H Josef Hebert AP "…."I believe there's been no espionage. It doesn't appear (the tapes) left the X Division," Richardson said on NBC's "Meet the Press," referring to the highly secure area of the Los Alamos lab where nuclear designers work. The two hard drives disappeared from a vault in the X Division sometime before May 7 and mysteriously reappeared behind a copying machine. ……. The secretary decried the security breakdown but strongly defending his attempts over the past year to improve security in his department's nuclear programs. ……… But key congressional intelligence committee members said there is no assurance the information has not been compromised. Even though espionage might not have been involved, they said the incident was an inexcusable breach of security for which Richardson should be held personally accountable. ……"

newsmax.com 6/18/00 Carl Limbacher "….. Pundits are already comparing the recovery of two Los Alamos Labs computer hard drives full of U.S. nuclear secrets to the mysterious 1996 reappearance of Hillary Clinton's missing Rose Law billing records, which turned up in the White House Book Room two years after they were subpoenaed. But in fact, the bizarre reappearance of the missing nuke files -- found Friday behind a copy machine inside the lab's appropriately named X Division -- more closely resembles the mysterious recovery of Vince Foster's so-called suicide note. ……. "Officials were highly skeptical of the circumstances surrounding the recovery because the area where the hard drives were found had already been closely searched twice," reported The New York Times on Saturday. ….."They were recovered under very questionable circumstances," a senior law enforcement official told the paper. …… Like the area at Los Alamos' X division where the hard drives were found, Foster's briefcase had been searched twice by White House officials -- once in the presence of FBI agents -- without the discovery of anything resembling a suicide note. ……"

Matt Drudge 6/20/00 "......FBI agents investigating the case of lost-then-found nuke secrets at Los Alamos are focusing on three weapons scientists who appear to have worked in collusion, the LOS ANGELES TIMES will report on Wednesday. ......Officials tell the paper that "human error and arrogance, not espionage, appear to be the culprits in the deepening mystery. ...."It's a screw-up and a cover-up,'' said one source. "It's not a spy ring." ......"

abcnews.go.com 6/21/00 H Josef Hebert "........The FBI has found no evidence of espionage or indications that missing computer disks containing nuclear secrets ever left the Los Alamos weapons lab, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said Wednesday. ....... He also told a Senate hearing that a grand jury has been convened to consider the case. Investigators have lifted fingerprints from wrappings of the hard drives, which apparently disappeared in late March and reappeared last week behind a copying machine. ......"The FBI has now determined that these are the authentic disk drives. ... So far there is no evidence of espionage, nor is there evidence that the drives have ever left the Los Alamos X Division," Richardson told the Senate Armed Services Committee. ........"

abcnews.go.com 6/21/00 H Josef Hebert "........After interviewing dozens of people and conducting a string of polygraph tests, investigators are stymied in trying to determine - even in general terms - when the two hard drives vanished from a highly secured vault at the federal laboratory in New Mexico. It may have been as long as six months ago, government officials fear. ......The last actual inventory that gives us a degree of certainty took place as part of the Y2K inventory," Rep. Porter Goss, R-Fla., chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said in an interview Tuesday. That was a few days after New Year's. ......,"That screams at me and says we've got a procedure problem," added Goss, a former CIA officer who has kept in close touch with the FBI and Energy Department investigation into the disappearance - and then reappearance - of the two hard drives, which contain information about how to dismantle nuclear warheads. ......"

abcnews.go.com 6/21/00 H Josef Hebert "........The FBI was still electronically examining the two drives, which suddenly reappeared behind a copying machine last Friday not far from the vault where they were supposed to be kept. .........The area, where access was limited to people with high security clearances, had been searched several times, raising the possibility someone might have misplaced and then returned them. ...... Browne, the lab's director, has testified that security rules for the tracking of items classified as secret were eased government-wide in 1992 to reduce the cost of handling the large amount of documents carrying this designation. ........ In early 1993 it was extended by then-President Bush to government contractors such as the University of California, which runs the Los Alamos lab. The policy was continued by the Clinton administration. ......The president's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board a year ago cited inadequate tracking of secret nuclear materials in a stinging rebuke of security at the Energy Department and its weapons labs. .......While the current Los Alamos security break likely did not involve espionage, "in some ways it's worse," former Sen. Warren Rudman, chairman of the advisory board, said in an interview. "Espionage is very hard to guard against. ......"

AP 6/21/00 ".....[to Richardson] BYRD: .......... I will only say that I think you've been very contemptible of the Congress in which you served. You served in Congress. I believe you represented your district in New Mexico seven times. You know the Congress. And you also should know the Constitution. And you should know that Congress has a responsibility of oversight over the departments. ..........I think there's a mind set in the department, perhaps in you, that the Congress is to be treated like a lap dog, that those people up there don't know anything about what they're doing, we don't have to listen to them, we will appear before the committees when we decide that we want to go, and there's not much that they can do about it. .......Well, there is. I've been in this Congress for a long time, 48 years. And I have voted upon several occasions for resolutions providing for contempt of Congress. And I wouldn't have any hesitancy about voting for such a resolution concerning you. ........You are very ready to say, now, you've done this, you've done that. ......I understand that my time is about up, but I'd like to finish.

WARNER: You take such time as you need, Senator Byrd, to finish. ....(LAUGHTER) ....

BYRD: I thank the chair............ So you're ready and eager now to take action against those miscreants, those lowly clerks, and those down the line somewhere who have erred. I compliment you on taking actions now. I compliment you on being angry now. I compliment you on having lie detectors now. I compliment you on the actions you are taking. But the horse is out of the barn. ........... It's a little bit like the parable in the scriptures of the 10 virgins, five of whom were wise and five of whom were foolish. And the wise virgins kept oil in their lamps, awaiting the coming of the bridegroom. But the foolish virgins slumbered and slept. And finally, when the bridegroom came, the five foolish virgins had no oil in their lamps, and they went to the wise virgins and begged for oil, but they were sent away empty-handed. ......... I think, Mr. Secretary, that you have no oil in the lamp. You've waited and you've shown a contempt of Congress that borders on a supreme arrogance of this institution. Let me tell you, there are still some people up here who work hard. There are still people up here who believe in the Constitution of the United States. There are people up here who believe in this Congress. Some pay millions--some pay millions--to become members. Others would have given their right arm to become a member of Congress. And it is indeed a great honor. ........And you have been shown that great honor by the people of New Mexico upon several occasions. I find, as I have tried to look back over the history some of the things that you've said before other committees of which I am a member, assurances that you've given us on other committees, and how you have gone away and not fulfilled those assurances. The contempt that you have shown for other committees, the Appropriations Committee being one. .........And I have to say, I'm not calling for your resignation at this moment. But you have shown a supreme contempt of the committees of this Congress. .........When you decided that you would go, if the newspaper stories are correct, when you decided that you would go before the Intelligence Committee when you were ready, you weren't ready yet, that was a supreme act of callous arrogance, and I resent it......."

newsmax.com 6/20/00 Barry Farber "......A few recollections on security now from one who remembers. In 1952 I was inducted into the Army and, after basic training, was assigned to one of our most secretive and important security agencies. ....... Technically, I've just let myself in for ten years in prison and a $10,000 fine for revealing even that much. I fear no prosecution. ........ The very existence of this agency was unknown to the public back then, but it's been so widely written about and so many veterans have spoken and written so explicitly about what they did that the horror that would have greeted this paragraph in 1952 has long been fossilized and forgotten. ......They wanted me because I passed tests in several languages that interested them; not surprisingly, principally Russian. ......My photo-badge had a black bar diagonally across the bottom. That meant I did not have a full clearance. I was only partially cleared. .....Can anyone guess why a good-ole-boy from North Carolina who had volunteered for military service and already distinguished himself in college writings as an ardent patriot and enemy of communism would be awarded only PARTIAL clearance? .......I don't mean to kick a bureaucrat when he's down, but I honest-to-God don't believe Bill Richardson would understand it. ......I was born in America. Both parents were born in America. But all four grandparents were born in territory that later became communist. They were born in Czarist Russia. .......I thought that was swine-headed until I learned more about security. Then I accepted it as wisdom, wisdom I now fear we've lost. ........ Sure, I knew I and my extended family were all patriotic Americans and educated anti-communists. But how could the agency be sure? Those grandparents were born in a country that became communist long after they left. ........ So what? Who knows how many cousins may have remained and either become believing communists or fallen into situations where the party could blackmail them into doing their bidding. .......And, who knows if maybe one or more of those long-lost cousins might still be communicating with us through secret mail-drops in Switzerland or Finland. ......... Yes, I seemed okay. My parents and grandparents seemed okay. But we had possible potential connections with the Oher Side. Therefore, I should be watched, and awarded only enough security clearance to do my job. .........Do now, please, what Einstein called a "thought experiment." Try to imagine Bill Clinton angrily explaining that previous paragraph to Bill Richardson in the Oval Office. ........"

newsmax.com 6/20/00 Barry Farber "......The state of our national security at this moment is best exemplified by a cartoon many years ago. The bank robber has the handgun in the face of the teller with his hands up. The teller's phone has obviously rung and the robber has picked up the receiver and put it to his ear, his gun still in the face of the teller. The caption is what the bank robber is hearing over the teller's phone. He is saying, "Hey, this is Murphy down at police headquarters. Some yo-yo over there has his foot on the burglar alarm!" ......"

Daily Republican 6/20/00 "........Scientists at a key U.S. nuclear weapons facility have made "contradictory statements" about security breaches which suggest someone is hiding something -- either espionage or negligence that could cost them their jobs, a senior official said on Sunday. Edward Curran, director of the Energy Department's Office of Counterintelligence, said "several contradictory statements made by these people (with access to two highly sensitive computer hard drives) ... tend to indicate they had some knowledge" of how and why the hard drives disappeared and then reappeared on Friday under suspicious circumstances. ........Asked by a television interviewer if he could rule out espionage at this time, Curran said "absolutely not." He added that the FBI is treating the room where the hard drives were found "as a crime scene." ......."

Daily Republican 6/20/00 "........Edward Curran, director of the Energy Department's Office of Counterintelligence, said "several contradictory statements made by these people (with access to two highly sensitive computer hard drives) ... tend to indicate they had some knowledge" of how and why the hard drives disappeared and then reappeared on Friday under suspicious circumstances. He blamed the incident on "human error, a mistake..." .......The "best-case" scenario is the hard drives were misplaced out of negligence or inattention to security procedures and never left the secure area at Los Alamos where they were found, said Curran, speaking on CBS' "Face the Nation." ........ Under that scenario, the scientist or scientists who misplaced them may have not come forward because they are "terrified" of the consequences, he said. A breach of security could lead to lost jobs or possible criminal prosecution, even if there was no criminal intent. ........ "There are contradictory statements being made and there are several people involved" with access to the hard drives, Curran said. "We were not even notified of this for three weeks. That in itself is a major violation of the rules." ......."

Daily Republican 6/20/00 "........While refusing to rule out espionage, Curran also said "there is no question in my mind this is a cultural question," where scientists at the facility resist or resent security procedures and seek to circumvent them. ........ He cited efforts by researchers to avoid taking polygraph tests to protect lab security, and to ensure they pass the tests if they are forced to take them. "We know scientists scheduled to take the polygraph are preparing to defeat the polygraph," Curran said. ....... While no evidence of espionage had been uncovered and "the vast majority are doing their jobs well" at the department, Glauthier admitted the agency probably harbored "a few bad apples" who had compromised security out of negligence or, possibly, criminal intent. ........."

Daily Republican 6/20/00 "........Shelby called on Richardson to resign and said the security breach at Los Alamos, the second major lapse at the lab discovered in just over a year, "is just another example of the lax attitude" toward security in the Clinton administration. He cited the loss of sensitive laptop computers at the State Department and the failure to prevent the transfer of secret documents to an insecure personal computer at the home of a former director of the CIA. Shelby, also appearing on "Fox News Sunday, said security breaches under the Clinton administration are endemic and pose a continuing threat to the United States and its allies. Shelby called the failure to guard national secrets a "malignancy" at the heart of the U.S. government. ....... Richardson and other officials tried to shift the blame to the University of California, which conducts research at Los Alamos and other labs under contract to the Energy Department. ....."

Freeper OKCSubmariner 6/20/00 ".......Excerpt from AP story on 6/20/2000 ...... Six months after the report, on June 4, 1997, Robert Vrooman, then the chief of the lab's counterintelligence office, issued a directive removing "Accountability Requirements for Sigma 15 Information." "Classified matter containing Sigma 15 information may now be removed from formal accountability," Vrooman wrote. This meant it was no longer necessary to sign out and track Sigma 15 information - such as the hard drives, which were used by emergency response teams to disarm nuclear warheads. ........Vrooman has been singled out before for security breaches. A Senate report and a DOE inspector general report cited him for failing to remove Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee from his position in 1997 after FBI agents - who had told Vrooman not to tip Lee off that he was under investigation - later recommended the Taiwan-born scientist be fired. ....."

UPI via NewsMax.com 6/21/00 "....... Federal investigators have so far found no evidence that computer disks showing how to disarm U.S. and other nuclear weapons, found Friday behind a photocopier at a top-secret government lab, were copied by foreign intelligence agents, Department of Energy officials said Wednesday. ...... One likely scenario for the disks' disappearance, department officials said, is that one or several of the 26 scientists allowed unescorted access to the vault where the hard disks are stored took the discs and then panicked after security officials reported them missing. ......"This could simply be a case of an individual who made a mistake and was terrified to come forward because they knew how seriously the department now takes security," said Richardson. ......... Lawmakers, however, vigorously rejected Richardson's characterization. Angered in part by Richardson's unwillingness to appear before the Intelligence Committee last week, Sen. Robert Byrd, D-W.Va., said he would have "no hesitancy" if called on to vote Richardson in contempt of Congress. Several committee members called on Richardson to resign. ........"

Newsday.com 6/21/00 AP H Josef Hebert "......A grand jury has been convened to look into the two-month disappearance of nuclear secrets at the Los Alamos weapons laboratory as the FBI focuses on ''a handful'' of scientist, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said Wednesday. ....... Some lawmakers remained unconvinced after hearing Richardson, who spoke at a public session and then back-back closed-door meetings with Senate committees. Asked if he were concerned secrets might have been compromised, the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said, ''We don't know.'' ''It is clear there was a lack of accounting for a great period of time,'' said Sen. John Warner, R-Va. ..... They are believed to have disappeared ''at the tail end of March'' from a vault in the top-secret ''X Division'' at Los Alamos. The drives were found last Friday behind a copying machine in an area that had been thoroughly searched at least twice, according to officials. ...... Even if the drives have not been compromised, those involved in thee disappearance and mysterious reappearance could face felony charges for mishandling nuclear secrets. Officials said DOE regulations requiring any security breach to be reported within eight hours were violated. ..... '

Newsday.com 6/21/00 AP H Josef Hebert "......'You've lost all credibility,'' Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., chairman of the Intelligence Committee, told Richardson. ''I believe you are part of the problem. Look in the mirror,'' lectured Shelby, who has said Richardson should resign. ......... ''In two years I've done more on security than has been done in the last 20 years,'' he told the senators. But they were in no mood for such explanations. ........ Lawmakers instead accused Richardson of trying for months to sidestep a requirement from Congress last year that would put nuclear weapons programs under a largely autonomous agency within his department. They said this would streamline accountability. ....... Richardson contended the new agency was being given too much independence; he staffed it with his own senior advisers. On Wednesday -- under intense attack -- he said he was ready to accept the agency as created. ......The latest incident at Los Alamos may have far reaching impact, reviving congressional interest in taking control of the nuclear weapons program away from the Energy Department. ......Warner said he would soon introduce legislation to look at whether an independent agency or the Defense Department should take over the nuclear weapons programs, including the research labs. .........Sen. Joe Lieberman predicted that if security does not improve and the administration does not give wide berth to the new nuclear weapons agency, there will be strong bipartisan support for putting the Pentagon in charge. ''This really is the last chance,'' Lieberman, D-Conn., told Richardson. ...."

 

Fox News 6/21/00 AP ".......Republican members of the committee opened the hearing with a blistering attack, saying Richardson had broken promises he made a year ago to ensure that nuclear secrets are safe at the nation's weapons labs. "On May 26, 1999, a little over a year ago, you wrote in USA Today and I'll quote, 'Americans can be reassured our nation's nuclear secrets are today safe and secure,'" said committee chairman Sen. John Warner, R-Va. ....... "A year later," he continued, "on May 12 of this year, just a few weeks ago, in the middle of the Los Alamos fires, you told the press, Mr. Secretary, that nuclear weapons materials and secrets at Los Alamos were safe." ...... "You've lost all credibility," Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., chairman of the Intelligence Committee, told Richardson. He reiterated his view that Richardson ought to resign. ......"

Fox News 6/21/00 AP "......."This is an outrage," said Bob Smith, R-N.H. "And I - with all due respect, Mr. Secretary, and I've served with you in the House, I've known you for almost 20 years, I like you, but what you're hearing here, if I were in your shoes, I would be so furious. There are people - somebody has to be held accountable here. Somebody must pay for this." "I'm afraid, Mr. Secretary," said Warner "that the culture of indifference towards security has now infected your office and I'm not sure that the reforms will cure the disease. Members of both parties showed little sympathy for Richardson. ....... "There's no tolerance for data of this kind to be missing," declared Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan, the top Democrat on the committee. He said lab scientists were "worried about their own skins" and tried to cover up the loss for weeks. ........ "

New York Times 6/22/00 "...... Senator John W. Warner, the Virginia Republican who heads the Senate Armed Services Committee, was asked if he was concerned that secrets might have been compromised, and he replied, "We don't know." ........ Even if the drives have not been compromised, those involved in the disappearance and reappearance could face felony charges for mishandling nuclear secrets. Officials said regulations requiring any security breach to be reported within eight hours were violated. ...... "

Walter Pincus 6/21/00 Washington Post "....The two computer hard drives containing nuclear secrets that were found last week at Los Alamos National Laboratory may have been missing from a storage vault for as long as six months, investigators said yesterday. Previously it was thought that the hard drives, which hold information that an Energy Department response team would use to disarm a U.S. or foreign nuclear weapon in an emergency, had been missing for about a month......."Everything is up in the air," he said, adding that "there seems to be a massive coverup" among NEST members on "how the drives disappeared" and "how they reappeared" last Friday behind a copying machine in a room that had been thoroughly searched....."

6/20/00 CNN ".....The whereabouts of two computer hard drives at the center of a Los Alamos National Laboratory security breach investigation may have been unknown for as long as six months -- not the six weeks originally reported, CNN learned Tuesday. ....... While one scientist reported seeing the drives in the vault on April 7, federal officials are now suspicious of that claim, government sources told CNN. One government official told CNN the last official written inventory documenting the location of the hard drives took place in early January. ....... Sources said the scientist whose April 7 sighting claim is now considered suspicious is one of at least three lab employees who now find themselves the subject of an FBI investigation. ......."

Fox News Channel 6/20/00 Brian Wilson ".....The Department of Energy ignored security recommendations in 1997 that could have prevented the recent disappearance of two sensitive hard drives from the Los Alamos National Laboratory, Fox News has learned. ........ According to documents obtained by Fox News, the DOE under Hazel O'Leary, who was embroiled in scandals that sent her packing soon afterwards, ignored the recommendations of a 1997 review panel that called for more security around nuclear information. ...... Among the panel's recommendations was a suggestion that the DOE upgrade "Sigma 14" and "Sigma 15" nuclear information to "Top Secret." Two hard drives that contained information on U.S. and Russian nuclear weapons - and were classified at the Sigma 15 level - disappeared under suspicious circumstances last month, only to reappear last week stashed behind a photocopier. ...... Under a policy of openness at the O'Leary DOE, the panel was establishing guidelines for declassifying previously overclassified information, some of it dating back to the Nevada nuclear tests in the 1940s. ......In a section of its January 1997 report - entitled, "High Fences Around the Most Sensitive Information" - the panel suggested that "strict, and perhaps higher, levels of security be maintained around the more sensitive material." The committee agreed that tightening security around Sigma 14 and 15 information "is valid, and in fact should be treated as an imperative." The panel recommended "reclassifying this sensitive information to Top Secret." ....... Those recommendations were ignored, according to documents uncovered by Fox News. ......"

Fox News Channel 6/20/00 Brian Wilson ".....Six months after the report, on June 4, 1997, Robert Vrooman, then the chief of the lab's counterintelligence office, issued a directive removing "Accountability Requirements for Sigma 15 Information." ......"Classified matter containing Sigma 15 information may now be removed from formal accountability," Vrooman wrote. This meant it was no longer necessary to sign out and track Sigma 15 information - such as the hard drives, which were used by emergency response teams to disarm nuclear warheads. ......Vrooman has been singled out before for security breaches. A Senate report and a DOE inspector general report cited him for failing to remove Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee from his position in 1997 after FBI agents - who had told Vrooman not to tip Lee off that he was under investigation - later recommended the Taiwan-born scientist be fired. ......Vrooman, who had been a part-time consultant to the lab since his retirement, was barred by the DOE from doing consulting services for at least five years after the inspector general's report. ....."

TheRegister.co.uk 6/20/00 Thomas Greene "…..Two hard disk drives containing secret information on nuclear weapons, which disappeared from a secure area in the Los Alamos National Laboratory, were found behind a photocopier days after the area was searched, making it all but certain that they were replaced under the noses of FBI investigators. …….. The drives were found in the X Division of the Los Alamos campus, from which they originally vanished. The X Division is concerned with weapons design. …..The University of California serves as the Lab's management and operating contractor. This is hardly the first time that practice of putting academicians in charge of national security has given occasion to bring the overall concept into question. ……"

TheRegister.co.uk 6/20/00 Thomas Greene "…..Government-wide nuts-and-bolts steps required to secure secret and top secret information have been relaxed dramatically under the Clinton Administration, it was revealed during a joint hearing of the Senate Intelligence and Energy Committees chaired by Senator Shelby last week. ……… Incredibly, there are 26 members of NEST who are permitted to enter the vaults and remove materials without signing out the inventory or otherwise recording their comings and goings. The custodian on duty is responsible only for ensuring that those without unescorted access are supervised in and around the vaults. Thus anyone with the required clearance is permitted to remove the drives without notifying anyone else. ………Not only is this risky from a counterintelligence point of view, it might make for some logistical disasters if NEST staff should need to respond immediately to a threat, and should then find the kit missing with no record who might have it. ……"

TheRegister.co.uk 6/20/00 Thomas Greene "….."Ten years ago we had rules that information of this type would have been 'top secret'. Those rules changed. When I became Chief of the Strategic Command, I was astounded in 1996 when I found that those rules had changed," he lamented. ……. Energy Secretary Richardson has been soft-pedalling the significance of the Los Alamos security lapse, as he did during the Wen Ho Lee case. Back then no one could say it was his fault; it was Morning in the Department, so to speak. ……. However, this has worn thin, especially because last week, while the Intelligence Committee was grilling his underlings, Richardson was over at the National Press Club chirping optimistically to reporters about improvements in energy efficiency among automobiles. Apparently, he considered PR more important than fact-finding with Congress. ……."

Insight 6/21/00 Sean Paige "…….Responding to whistle-blower complaints concerning Los Alamos security self-assessments in 1998 and 1999, DOE's IG recently concluded that managers at DOE's Safeguards and Security Division in Albuquerque softened or altered the results of Los Alamos lab-security assessments in 1998 and 1999, overriding the recommendations of security professionals without so much as providing a documented rationale for the alterations. …….. Security safeguards within the lab that were rated as "marginal" or "unsatisfactory" by field personnel were altered and sometimes even upgraded by managers, after the fact, in moves that seem designed to distort the true condition of security at the facility and paper over the field security assessments and warnings. The IG further reported that documentation supporting the security assessments had been destroyed or was missing (in violation of DOE policy), making it impossible to review the bastardization of the ratings, and that DOE officials in Albuquerque downplayed the embarrassing results of a force-on-force security exercise conducted during a 1998 security survey……"

Insight 6/21/00 Sean Paige "…….Responding to a second set of allegations, the IG also confirmed that Los Alamos lab-security personnel felt pressured by managers of the lab's Security Operations Division - which is staffed with employees of the facility's long-standing prime contractor, the University of California at Berkeley - to soften findings of security self-assessments they were conducting. Based on interviews, the IG found that 30 percent of the security personnel who worked on the assessments (or 8 of the 28 interviewed) had felt pressured to soften their security assessments. "Several of these individuals said [Los Alamos] management appeared to be more concerned about making [the lab] and the Security Operations Division 'look good' than reporting the actual security condition at [the lab]," according to the report……."

LYCOS News 6/21/00 "…….Two Los Alamos National Laboratory employees flunked lie detector tests and have been flown to Washington, D.C., for further questioning, investigators said. In addition, new evidence suggests that the laboratory's two missing hard drives found last week may have been gone for up to six months. ……"Everything is up in the air," said a government official. "There seems to be a massive cover-up." ……"

CNS News 6/21/00 Susan Jones "……."We must remember that a successful security policy is one that allows you to uncover security problems; the worst security violations are the ones that go undetected," Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said today in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee. …….. Richardson said that Energy Department policies were not followed from the outset, "so it is taking some time to assemble the facts of the case." ……… Los Alamos National Laboratory Director John Browne also testified before the Committee Wednesday. ……"I am here today to report on a serious loss of control over classified information at my laboratory," he said. "As of this time, I have no knowledge that the information has been compromised or tampered with, or that espionage is involved. From a national security perspective, these are positive indications." ……"

CNSNews.com 6/21/00 Bruce Sullivan "……."These incidents happened on your watch," Warner told Richardson. "Like the captain of a ship, you must bear full accountability," added Warner, a former Secretary of the Navy. …….The committee's ranking Democrat, Senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia, told Richardson he would have "no hesitation" about voting Richardson in contempt of Congress for postponing several appearances before Senate committees prior to today's hearing. Congress, Byrd told Richardson, a former member of the House, should not "be treated like a lap dog."…….. Security has been an ongoing problem at Los Alamos, said Richardson, who, without naming names, implied that some former DOE directors might have been less diligent in the area of security than himself. "I feel that some of my predecessors were not as strong as I wanted to be," said Richardson, who added that he was not shifting blame to anyone else…….. Sen. Joseph Lieberman (D-CT) said if problems continue at the DOE, Congress might have to return control of the nuclear weapons program to the Defense Department. "We can do it if we have to," said Lieberman…….. Warner told Richardson he will file legislation to establish a bipartisan congressional commission to monitor security at the DOE over the next 8 to 10 months, which will then recommend either that the nuclear weapons program stay at the DOE, is transferred to DOD, or a new agency is developed similar to the old Atomic Energy Commission……."Nuclear weapons have been, are, and in my opinion always will be, the greatest threat to the security of the people of this nation, and, indeed to our allies abroad," said Warner. "Our allies and the world look to us for the protection of this technology, for the advancement of this technology where it is necessary to maintain our deterrents."….."

CNN 6/21/00 Ian Christopher McCaleb "….. The safety of weapons secrets has dogged Richardson for much of his tenure as Energy Secretary. During his watch, Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee was removed from his position amid charges of spying. He has been formally charged with mishandling classified information -- not espionage -- and awaits trial. Members of Congress have also raised red flags over the reported sale of computers once used at the Savannah River nuclear weapons facility in Augusta, Georgia. Those computers, two senators intimated Wednesday, may have once contained classified information that could have been reconstructed by their new owners. ……Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-South Carolina) suggested at Wednesday's hearings that some of the Savannah River computers may have been sold to the People's Republic of China. ….."

CNN 6/21/00 Ian Christopher McCaleb "…..In his opening statement, Armed Services Chairman John Warner (R-Virginia) lined Richardson himself up for accountability, saying that although Richardson has worked to change the security culture at the Energy Department and the national laboratories, ultimately, responsibility for ongoing lapses rests with him. "Mr. Secretary," Warner said directly to Richardson, "On June 23rd of last year you told this committee, in this room: 'The secretary of Energy,' and I quote you, '...must be accountable and must be responsible" for such security failures. " ... We are holding you accountable," Warner said. "These incidents happened on your watch. Like the captain of a ship, you must bear full accountability." …….."

CNN 6/21/00 Ian Christopher McCaleb "…..Richardson, who at times looked stunned by the tone taken by many committee members, sought to defend himself -- arguing that he wanted to have "all the facts" in hand before making a congressional appearance. He added that he had made vast changes in the security culture at the department and in the nation's weapons laboratories, and had put off a good many longtime employees as a consequence. …….."I've been excoriated, but if you go into the scientific and academic community, I am driving scientists away." He also said he has been accused of racism in the Wen Ho Lee case, and has had to battle members of own party who saw regular polygraph tests for employees as a violation of civil rights. …….Sen. James Inhofe (R-Oklahoma) suggested that the "captain of the ship" wasn't Richardson, but President Bill Clinton, who Inhofe said was responsible for a variety of security policy changes and leaks to the media that have led to a relaxed, careless attitude among those charged with overseeing the nation's weapons secrets. ……."

CNN 6/21/00 Ian Christopher McCaleb "…..Air Force Gen. John Gordon, confirmed by the Senate to helm the agency but not as yet sworn into the post, will report to Richardson, but will not be directed by anyone else at the Energy Department. ……. The Senate had held up Gordon's confirmation for months for unspecified reasons, but he was unanimously confirmed last week after news of the hard drives' disappearance was released. "The best thing you could do to leave a legacy for America in terms of nuclear weapons is to [get this agency operational]," Domenici said, scolding Richardson not to engage in any "dual-hatting," and let Gordon make the changes he needs to make. …… Warner was less congratulatory, warning Richardson outright that he must honor the 1999 law creating the agency and allow it to go about its business unfettered. ……. The panel closed its session to the public and members of the media just after noon on Wednesday so specifics of the case could be discussed. Domenici predicted earlier in the day that a closed session would yield much more in the way of disturbing information. "We could go into a closed session, and you wouldn't believe the things you'd hear in there," he said. "These things have to be corrected too." ……"

CNN 6/21/00 Ian Christopher McCaleb "…..Later in the day, the Select Intelligence Committee held a closed-door hearing on the matter. Richardson was in attendance. Shelby, the secretive panel's chairman, emerged from that gathering late in the afternoon, and told reporters he was even "more disturbed" than he had been earlier in the day. ……."

Colorado Springs Gazette 6/21/00 "…….Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, President Bill Clinton and other administration officials say everything will be OK in the brouhaha over the nation's now-they're-missing-now-they're-not nuclear secrets. Excuse us, if we worry anyway. Here's what happened: …….. After the problem emerged, officials admitted that there weren't even the most rudimentary security procedures surrounding the hard drives, such as a check-in system to see which employees were using classified data. …… Responsibility for this incident, and for the alleged security breaches earlier this year at the nuclear labs, is supposed to fall on Secretary Richardson. "I want accountability," Richardson has said. "There is going to be disciplinary action." …….Yet, a week ago, Richardson refused to appear before a Senate panel investigating the security problems that are, officially, his responsibility. ……Something as important as the disappearance of America's nuclear secrets should demand cooperation by the Energy chief, not just by a few underlings. ......"

CNN.COM 6/24/00 AP "……An inventory of all classified data at Los Alamos National Laboratory, taken in response to criticism over the disappearance of two top-secret hard drives, has found two more possible security breaches, a lab official said Saturday. ……. Two 10-year-old floppy disks containing classified information were reported missing Wednesday at the nuclear weapons lab. …….. However, they were found a day later, attached to a paper report in a nearby, secured area. And apparently no classified information was compromised, lab spokesman Jim Danneskiold said. ……… This and the second case, involving an unlocked door, are not considered as serious as the missing computer hard drives, but Danneskiold said the disappearance of the floppy disks would be investigated by the U.S. Department of Energy, which oversees the lab. …….. The disks "are obsolete," he said. "Very few, if any, computers are around that can read them." The disks had last been recorded in an inventory conducted two years ago. ……. In the second incident, Danneskiold said a computer repair person left an equipment closet unlocked inside a secure room. The room door was locked, however. …….. Danneskiold said the lab is itemizing all classified data in response to the uproar over the disappearance of the hard drives last month. "We've instituted a number of additional security measures beyond what's required," he said. ......"

INSIGHT magazine 6/23/00 G Hickey "……As Bill Richardson tried to shift blame and Al Gore concentrated on laying blame, the politics of responsibility was given a new look. Meanwhile, Gov. Bush was attacked for enforcing the law. ……… As part of their professed "new covenant" with American voters, Al Gore and Bill Clinton proclaimed "responsibility starts at the top." Just where the top is has changed a lot since those two Blues Brothers blew into town in 1993. …….. Ask Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson, who long had the inside track to be Gore's choice for vice president. After rebuffing a request for his appearance a week earlier by the Senate Intelligence Committee, Richardson finally managed to find time away from the Gore campaign trail this week to sit down before the Senate Armed Services Committee to testify about two removable computer hard drives …….A year ago the former New Mexico congressman sat before the same committee to argue against creating a separate, independent entity to monitor security practices at the national labs after it was learned China had obtained large amounts of classified information concerning the U.S. nuclear program. At the time Richardson boasted that "our nation's nuclear secrets are today safe and secure." .........This week, Richardson found out it was easier to sell U.S. nuclear secrets down the river than it was to sell his latest alibi to Congress. Trying to balance two lines of argument at the same time, Richardson proclaimed there was no espionage at the labs but that a grand jury and the FBI were looking into it. Then he attempted to put the blame on "the human element" and the University of California, which has overseen the nuclear program since the 1950s, rather than admit his failure to implement proper security measures. ......"

WorldNetDaily 6/29/00 Paul Sperry "……Investigators looking into the latest security breach at Los Alamos National Laboratory now suspect the unauthorized removal of two secret computer drives from a vault was not an isolated event, says a senior administration official familiar with the investigation. The lab has allowed employees with access to the vault to remove drives routinely from the vault for extended periods without accounting for them, investigators have found. ….. "As they've gotten into this, it's just gotten deeper and deeper," the official told WorldNetDaily. …….. He says that as investigators ask more questions of employees suspected of removing the drives, which were lost for about six months before turning up behind a copying machine, they're finding that the breach was more the rule than the exception. …… In fact, he says inventory procedures were so lax that the lab might not have even discovered the two drives missing if a forest fire hadn't motivated officials to secure the vault's contents. ...... But they're still not sure who removed the drives, where they took them or why. ……. "It's not unlikely that somebody had them (the NEST drives) in their home, or even their car" to save the time and hassle of going back to the lab, the official said. "That's the best-case scenario," he added. "Worst case is much worse. I mean, you're talking (foreign) espionage, or possibly one of these hard-core (U.S.) militias that have been recruiting protective forces at DOE (Department of Energy) sites." ……"

Associate Press 6/29/00 CNN "……A fast-moving brush fire that has grown to 100,000 acres was raging out of control early Thursday on and near the Hanford nuclear reservation in southeastern Washington state. The fire started Tuesday afternoon when a car hit a truck that caught on fire. Flames then spread quickly through the sagebrush that makes up most of the 560-square-mile site. "It looks like the sky is on fire. It looks like hell. It's scary," said Betty Upington of Richland. …….The briefly threatened building was an analytical laboratory where nuclear and hazardous waste samples are stored, said Michael Minette of the Hanford Joint Information Center. ……Energy Department officials said there were no known radioactive or hazardous waste releases. Structures on the Hanford site were no longer being threatened early Thursday, said Katie Larson, a public information officer for the reservation. ……"

Ap.tbo.com 6/29/00 Linda Ashton "…..As of Thursday morning, the 15-mile fire line was two to three miles from highly radioactive contamination in an area that once handled spent nuclear fuel, said John Britton, a spokesman at Benton County's operations center. Winds were calm this morning, but officials feared a possible shift in wind direction could heighten the danger. The worst of the radioactive waste at Hanford is encased and buried underground, but activists said there was still a danger of contaminated waste being spread. Energy Department officials said there were no known releases of radioactive waste. ….."

Washington Times 6/24/00 Bill Gertz "……A Los Alamos National Laboratory scientist misplaced classified documents stored on magnetic disks, further highlighting security problems at the nuclear-weapons facility, The Washington Times has learned. …… ``This security incident is currently being reviewed,'' said Stu Nagurka, an Energy Department spokesman. Mr. Nagurka said the documents were reported missing and later recovered during an audit of classified material after the loss and recovery of two computer hard drives that contained nuclear-weapons secrets. ………. ``Classified information that should have been in one secure area at Los Alamos was found in a nearby secure safe,'' he told The Washington Times. ``The information had never left a secure area and had always been appropriately stored, just in a different location than originally thought.'' …….. The missing information was discovered in a single day, however. Mr. Nagurka provided no other details about the incident. …….. The breach was uncovered during an inventory of electronic media _ disks and tapes _ used to store classified information. The audit is part of an effort to review security at the laboratory and involves checking ``bar code'' information on the media. ……."

New York Times 6/27/00 Todd Purdum "…..Federal prosecutors and lawyers for Wen Ho Lee, the government scientist accused of mishandling nuclear secrets at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, wrangled today over the defense's motion to suppress a raft of documents seized at Dr. Lee's home last year on the grounds that the warrant used was unconstitutionally broad. ……. The daylong hearing, sometimes tense, ranged from seemingly technical concerns like whether the warrant was stapled to the sealed affidavit prosecutors used to obtain it, to sweeping arguments over whether the affidavit itself was so broad as to violate the Fourth Amendment's guarantees against unreasonable search and seizure. ….. But the warrant shown to Dr. Lee that day made no reference to specific items sought, simply noting they were detailed in an affidavit which the government had asked a judge to seal on national security grounds and would not show Dr. Lee or his lawyers at the time. ……"Simply put, this is the worst warrant that any members of this defense team have ever seen," said Mark Holscher, one of Mr. Lee's lawyers. ….. He also sharply criticized the affidavit's list of various categories of items to be seized, and its repeated use of the phrase "includes but is not limited to," as impermissibly broad under existing federal court precedents requiring that such an affidavit in support of a warrant must be formally "incorporated" into the warrant itself. …….Prosecutors contended that the warrant was not technically flawed, but suggested that even if it was, the F.B.I. agent who wrote it and the magistrate who signed it were acting in good faith on an urgent matter. The warrant was written shortly after Dr. Lee permitted a search of his office and investigators discovered that the files were missing. ……."

Medium Rare articles 7/3/00 Jim Rarey "…… David Bresnahan, an investigative reporter for WorldNetDaily, has published two articles on the burgeoning scandal at the Army Research Lab (ARL) at Maryland's Aberdeen Proving Grounds. Allegations, based on reports and documentation from at least ten whistleblowers, include "a long history of corruption, including use of Army computers by unauthorized foreign nationals, plagiarism, falsification of research, illegal appropriation of private property, even smuggling of precious gems." ……..Various members of Congress have been provided the information and have been sitting on it for four years while nothing has been done. Why the cover-up?……. We may have been given a clue on March 19, 1999 at President's Clinton's press conference when Fox News reporter Wendell Goler dropped this bombshell. He stated, "Fox News has information that China has stolen top secret technical data on Electro-Magnetic Pulse (EMP) weaponry from four of our eleven secret weapons laboratories and have successfully tested the weaponry." Since that day, not one word has appeared in the national media on the subject. Instead, we have been inundated with information about lapses in security at the Los Alamos nuclear lab. ……."

Medium Rare articles 7/3/00 Jim Rarey "…… EMP weaponry stems from the findings and inventions of the brilliant European scientist Nikola Tesla, who gave us alternating current electricity. His research is being applied at a top-secret installation in Alaska called HAARP (High-Frequency Active Auroral Research program). Although passed off as merely a scientific inquiry into phenomena like aurora borealis (northern lights), in reality it is testing such things as anti-missile lasers, massive weather modification and non-lethal "psychotronic" weapons for use against military and civilian populations. When questioned about appropriations for the HAARP project, this writer's representative in Congress (who sits on the House Science Committee) admitted those appropriations are buried in the "black budget" for the intelligence community. ……So the as yet unanswered question is, was the Aberdeen Army Research Lab one of the four facilities Fox News was talking about on March 19th of last year? If so, the suspicious deaths of three key players takes on added significance. ……Bresnahan reports that two of the whistleblowers, ARL scientists Franz Lynn and Robert Deas, died shortly after trying to report their suspicions that technology from ARL was being provided to China. Deas died in a single-car accident in Canada. Lynn's death was reported as a suicide……..Even more intriguing is the supposed "suicide" of John Millis, staff director of the House Intelligence Committee…. "

Washington Post 7/8/00 Vernon Loeb "…….The Department of Energy's attempts to improve counterintelligence awareness training at the nuclear weapons laboratories have "failed dismally." Its polygraph program has yet to gain "even a modicum of acceptance." And its claims about fixing counterintelligence are "nonsense." So the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence opines in a report released last month on counterintelligence capabilities at Los Alamos, Lawrence Livermore and Sandia National Laboratories, citing a culture at all three facilities that is "profoundly antithetical toward counterintelligence and security."……."

Albuquerque Journal 6/28/00 Ian Hoffman "…..Predawn interrogations and other FBI tactics are alienating an elite corps of Los Alamos weapons scientists who designed the first stages of most U.S. nuclear weapons, according to scientists and others familiar with the investigation into lost control of two hard drives of nuclear secrets. A number of sources inside and outside Los Alamos National Laboratory say the investigation is hurting morale among the lab's 100 or so key weapons designers and prompting some to consider abandoning their work. "The FBI is being heavy-handed. I wouldn't tolerate what I understand is going on. And I'm absolutely certain it is causing unnecessary morale problems," said retired weapons designer Bob Peurifoy, a veteran government adviser on weapons science…….."

UPI 7/11/00 Ashley Baker "……Beginning in the early 1990s, White House officials hoping to simplify government-wide classification requirements repealed a series of key regulations designed to protect classified information at the Department of Energy, according to a report released by congressional auditors Tuesday. ………. Regular inventories, the assignment of unique identification numbers, receipts for internal distribution and approval for reproductions were among the DOE requirements for dealing with classified information nulled by the White House, auditors from the General Accounting Office told members of the House Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee. ………Glenn Podonsky, director of the DOE's Office of Independent Oversight and Performance Assurance, told lawmakers the changes had their foundation in a 1990 National Security Council assessment intended to establish a single government-wide set of rules for dealing with classified information………. "These reductions of accountability requirements were part of a general trend toward reduction in security that occurred in the early to mid-1990s, partly as the result of the end of the cold war," Podonsky said. "That general trend included DOE's encouragement for sites to reduce security costs through such actions as downsizing protective forces...or downgrading clearances." ……"

UPI 7/11/00 Ashley Baker "……In 1991, according to Podonsky, DOE dropped a requirement that individuals account for "National Security" information - information that could impact national security but was not directly tied to nuclear weapons design or the production of nuclear materials. …..……In May 1992, DOE ended its accountability requirements for data labeled "secret restricted" information - information that is related directly to nuclear weapons production. Finally, in January 1998, Department officials ended accountability for "top secret" information. …….…Ineffective controls over foreign visitors. In 1988 and again in 1997, GAO reported that foreign visitors were allowed into DOE's nuclear weapons design laboratories with few background checks and inadequate controls over the topics discussed. …..Weaknesses in controls over classified and sensitive information. In one instance, a laboratory could not account for 10,000 classified documents. In 1987, 1989, and 1991, GAO reported that foreign countries routinely obtained unclassified but sensitive information that could assist their nuclear weapons capability……."

UPI 7/11/00 Ashley Baker "……In early 1999, auditors reported that under its program with Russia to prevent proliferation, DOE may have provided Russian scientists with dual-use defense-related information that could harm U.S. national security…-Lax physical security controls. GAO reviews of security personnel found personnel "unable to demonstrate basic skills such as arresting intruders or shooting accurately." At one facility, 78 percent of the security personnel failed basic tests. Auditors also found that equipment and property worth millions of dollars was missing at some facilities. Ineffective management of personnel security clearance programs dating back to at least the 1980s. Contractors resolved backlogs by not verifying information on prospective employees …………Weaknesses in DOE's ability to track and control nuclear materials. GAO reported in 1980 and again in 1991 that officials at some facilities were not properly measuring, storing, and verifying quantities of nuclear materials. Also, DOE was not able to track all nuclear material sent overseas for research. ……."

Newsday.com 7/11/00 H Josef Hebert AP "……For 12 years, Energy Department procedures have not required classified documents to be signed in and out by users, a congressional investigator told lawmakers Tuesday. The finding adds to their fury over how two computer drives containing nuclear secrets went missing from the Los Alamos weapons lab last month. ………. An investigator for the General Accounting office told the House Commerce Committee that the since 1988, and likely even before that, the Energy Department ''has not and does not require a sign-out sheet'' for secret or even top secret material. …… Other requirements for protecting and controlling secrets have been discontinued, said Jim Wells, the GAO investigator. For example, the lab no longer requires frequent inventories or unique identification numbers for classified material, which makes it easier to track………."

Newsday.com 7/11/00 H Josef Hebert AP "……Wells said the General Accounting Office reviewed changes that have been made since 1988 for the control of classified material, including secret and top secret nuclear weapons material. In 1988 ''complete accountability was required,'' said Wells, but even then there was no sign-out or sign-in requirement for secrets kept in areas where access was highly controlled such as Los Alamos' ''X Division'' complex where nuclear weapons designers worked………The policy revisions in 1992 and 1993 left ''a security system that has deep flaws,'' said Rep. Tom Bliley, R-Va., the Commerce Committee chairman. He added that the lack of such records apparently has never been a violation of Energy Department security rules…….."

Washington Post 7/7/00 Vernon Loeb Walter Pincus "……. Federal prosecutors argued this week that former Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee may have copied nuclear secrets onto portable tapes either to help mainland China or to impress prospective employers in Taiwan, Australia, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Singapore or Switzerland. …….. Bay also argued that the government does not have to show that Lee planned to give nuclear secrets to a particular nation, but merely that he copied the secrets "with the intent to injure the United States."……"

Los Angeles Times 7/7/00 Bob Drogin Eric Lichtblau "…..Federal prosecutors have concluded that fired Los Alamos engineer Wen Ho Lee was trying to boost his job prospects with research institutes in Europe and Asia when he allegedly copied a virtual archive of nuclear weapon secrets. The disclosure, contained in court papers filed in U.S. District Court in Albuquerque, marks the first time the government has publicly stated its theory of Lee's intent in the highly controversial case. He faces 59 felony counts………Until now, federal investigators have suggested that Lee was a skilled spy who either passed or planned to pass some of America's most valuable nuclear secrets to China or Taiwan. Defense lawyers say that a more mundane motivation may undermine the government's case when Lee's trial begins Nov. 6…….Paul D. Moore, the FBI's chief Chinese intelligence analyst for more than 20 years, said Thursday that the government theory suggested Lee "was downloading this material in furtherance of seeking another job and essentially bringing along a load of bread under his arm" to entice prospective employers......., Moore noted that, given the cutbacks at the labs, Lee may have gone to foreign-run institutes and said: "Here's something that could put your research ahead 25 years." Even though most of the countries named by the government in its filing are U.S. allies, Moore said, that does not diminish the severity of the alleged offense. "You don't have to hurt the United States" to damage national security, he said. While Lee is not charged with espionage, he said, prosecutors "are looking at somebody who appears to be preparing to commit espionage, at the very least. It doesn't reduce the seriousness if you say, 'Oh, maybe he was going to Taiwan.' "….."

Reuters via Yahoo 7/7/00 Zelie Pollon "…….U.S. prosecutors have acknowledged that Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee may have been job hunting rather than spying when he allegedly copied nuclear secrets, according to court papers made available on Friday. The filing by federal prosecutors named eight European and Pacific Rim countries including China where Lee looked for employment in 1993 around the time he allegedly began downloading nuclear secrets from computers at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Lee, 60, has been jailed without bond since he was indicted in December 1999 on 59 counts of illegally copying data on nuclear weapons design. He pleaded not guilty and faces trial in November. ……``In 1993, at or about the time of the first offenses charged, the defendant addressed letters seeking employment in Australia, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Singapore, Switzerland and Taiwan,'' the government said. ......"

LA Times 7/9/00 John Kasich "…..It's long past time for Department of Energy officials to drop their "dog ate my homework" alibis and admit that the critics were right all along: The department cannot be reinvented; it should be abolished. The DOE suffers from a disjointed and incompatible set of missions--from nuclear weapons security to civilian energy research to publicizing the benefits of home insulation. And it doesn't seem to do any of them well...."

New York Times 7/10/00 James Risen "…..Classified work at the federal government's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory has been suspended as a result of a security lapse, according to Energy Department and laboratory officials. Laboratory officials suspended all classified work at the installation in Richland, Wash., after an employee discovered a classified document had been left in an unclassified but locked office for about a day. Officials said classified work was stopped on July 3, after the classified document was discovered in an unclassified area on June 30. ……… While some classified work has resumed, most secret operations at the laboratory remain suspended, and some employees have been shifted to unclassified work while an investigation is conducted, the officials said. …….The security lapse at Pacific Northwest appears to have been minor, but officials responded aggressively because it came so soon after the publicity over lax security at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico.... The Pacific Northwest laboratory is one of nine national laboratories, but its scientists do not design nuclear weapons. Instead, the laboratory, which has about 3,500 employees, focuses on environmental science. Only about 13 percent of its research is considered classified. …….."

Miami Herald Online 7/9/00 Michael Stroh "…..Weeks after wildfires roasted 47,000 acres of once-lush forest and several neighborhoods, residents here in the birthplace of the atomic bomb are struggling to rebound. But Mother Nature may have one last trial in store for Atomic City: a flood…… Meteorologists say the annual monsoon season will come early and heavy this year. While farmers in drought-stricken New Mexico are hopeful, Los Alamos will be sweating each falling drop. …….Just two inches of continuous rain -- and perhaps much less -- is all scientists say it will take to unleash a soupy torrent of water, mud and debris down the scarred mountain slopes. If that happens, the flood could wash away a critical bridge in town and swamp homes in the valley below. ……"

Yahoo News 6/29/00 Nicole Vole "…….International Business Machines Corp on Thursday unveiled the fastest computer in the world, which the U.S. government will use to simulate nuclear weapons tests. The supercomputer, able to process more in a second than one person with a calculator could do in 10 million years, was made for the Department of Energy's Accelerated Strategic Computing Initiative (ASCI). The system could ease congressional opposition to the United States signing the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, banning all actual nuclear weapons testing worldwide……."

San Diego Union Tribune 6/30/00 Joseph Perkins "……It was a mere 13 months ago that Richardson declared, "Our nation's nuclear secrets are today safe and secure." His assurances came in the wake of damning revelations that foreign spies had infiltrated the nation's weapons labs -- which the energy secretary oversees -- and stolen secrets to every weapon in the U.S. nuclear arsenal. Richardson accepted no responsibility for this egregious breach in national security, laying blame at the feet of his predecessors. Nevertheless, he pledged to implement a host of "security reforms" that were to prevent any further thefts of nuclear secrets at Los Alamos and the other weapons labs. Now we find that Richardson's supposed "security reforms" have utterly failed. ……. For someone was able to stroll into the lab's supposedly "secure" vault at least two months ago and make off with two computer hard drives containing technical details on every nuclear weapon in both the U.S. and Russian arsenals. ……. And, once the disappearance of the hard drives was discovered (on May 7), once Richardson was finally clued in on the security breach (24 days later), and once a full-blown investigation was under way, someone was able to stroll into the lab's supposedly "secure" X Division and return the missing drives without detection. ......Richardson has lost the confidence of fellow Democrats, of former colleagues on Capital Hill not merely because of the latest theft of nuclear secrets from a national weapons lab, but because the theft is symptomatic of the overall, woeful state of security at Los Alamos, Sandia and Lawrence Livermore -- despite the energy secretary's supposed security reforms. .........In fact, a new report by the Energy Department's inspector general reveals that employees at Los Alamos have been pressured to report that security at the lab is better than they actually believe. The report wasn't talking about one or two whistleblowers, but about 30 percent of security operations personnel at Los Alamos. ………On the heels of that report came an inventory of all classified data at Los Alamos which found two more possible secureity breaches, one concerning two missing 10-year-old floppy disks, the other involving an unlocked door inside a supposedly "secure" room (that's the kind of laxity that enabled someone to make off with the computer hard drives from the lab's "secure" vault). ……"

Newsday.com 6/30/00 H Josef Hebert AP "……Energy Secretary Bill Richardson dismissed calls for his resignation Friday as politics and said he will ''absolutely not'' step down over the security lapses at the Los Alamos weapons lab. ……..Interviewed on NBC's ''Today,'' Richardson said the FBI has yet to finish its examination of the two computer drives, which vanished from a vault and two months later were discovered behind a copying machine in an area already searched. Richardson didn't learn of the incident for three weeks. ……"

Washington Post 6/30/00 John Wiley "…..A wildfire ignited by a car crash raged across the dry sagebrush of the Hanford nuclear complex today, forcing the evacuation of thousands of residents, destroying more than two dozen homes and raising fears that the flames would spread radioactive material. The blaze is the second in two months to threaten a U.S. nuclear weapons installation……… Hanford contains the nation's largest volume of radioactive waste from nuclear weapons. The fire was about three miles from highly radioactive material in an area that once handled spent nuclear fuel, Energy Department spokeswoman Julie Erickson said……."

UPI 7/1/00 "…..University of California officials say they won't be sorry to lose security responsibilities at the nation's nuclear weapons laboratories since they are educators better suited to science than counterespionage……. "We are not spy folks; we are science folks. So if the government would like to supervise the security, that is a plus,'' UC Regent William Bagley told the San Francisco Chronicle in a story published Saturday. "It is their responsibility, anyway."……… Energy Secretary Bill Richardson announced Friday that his department's contract with the UC system would be "restructured" in order to revamp security measures at the labs that university systems manages……..The Livermore lab near San Francisco has also come under recent scrutiny. The Los Angeles Times said Saturday that a former scientist recently filed a lawsuit charging the lab with covering up alleged problems with the handling of plutonium. Livermore has also been over budget and behind schedule on construction of the National Ignition Facility -- a costly high-tech nuclear fusion project……"

Albuquerque Journal/Capitol Hill Blue 7/3/00 Ian Hoffman "…… As scientists feared, House Republicans are again pushing polygraph tests for potentially thousands of weapons lab workers with access to even the least significant bomb secrets. ………Lab scientists already revile the use of polygraphs for security screening as scientifically unproven and an insult. Several scientists abandoned weapons work at Los Alamos National Laboratory last year, and Congress' angry rhetoric over two lost, then found hard drives containing nuclear weapons information has increased talk of defections. "So the flogging continues until morale improves," quipped Sandia National Laboratories engineer William Sullivan. ……."Working at the labs and working on classified (weapons research) is a choice," Sullivan said. "If you make it threatening enough, people aren't going to choose classified work or even work at the labs." ……. "Many members of the current Congress are given to this kind of chest thumping," Aftergood said. "The message here is a lack of confidence in the Department of Energy and Los Alamos with respect to security policy. And they are trying to dictate the details of policy from the halls of Congress, which is simply bound to be a mistake." ...... "

 

TBO.com 7/16/00 "…..All 800 nuclear scientists and security workers at the Energy Department subjected to polygraph exams this year passed the lie detector exams, the agency's director of counterintelligence says. About 20 percent of the employees showed physiological responses that indicated some "deception" when questioned about unauthorized contacts, Edward J. Curran told The Washington Post for a story in Sunday editions. ….."

Bureau of Export Administration U. S. Department of Commerce 6/26/00 "…….-- Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Enforcement F. Amanda DeBusk today announced agreements with Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), Los Alamos, NM, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Livermore, CA, concerning alleged shipments of various commodities without the proper Department of Commerce authorizations. …….In 1996, the Department of Energy (DOE) discovered that the labs may have made the unauthorized exports and brought the matter to the attention of the Department. LANL and LLNL fully cooperated in the investigation. …….The Department of Commerce alleged that LANL, on four occasions from 1994 to 1996, and LLNL, on one occasion in 1994, shipped commodities to Russia without obtaining the export licenses required under the Export Administration Regulations. The exports by LANL occurred under the Department of Energy Material Protection, Control and Accounting Program, designed to reduce the threat to U.S. national security posed by unsecured Russian weapons-usable nuclear material. The commodities consisted of devices for measuring nuclear material, a communications router, a 486 computer and a printer. The export by LLNL occurred under a separate lab-to-lab project. ……."

Los Angeles Times 8/1/00 "…. Los Alamos National Laboratory placed about 35 members of a nuclear weapon group on paid leave for a week to recuperate from stress related to an investigation into the disappearance of two computer hard drives from a vault in a top-secret area. "…."

San Jose Mercury News 7/23/00 Dan Stober "…… Wen Ho Lee's wife worked for the CIA when she was a secretary at Los Alamos National Laboratory in the 1980s, a revelation that defense attorneys will use to attack the government case against the scientist accused of betraying America's most sensitive nuclear weapons secrets. Sylvia Lee supplied information about Chinese scientists to a CIA officer in her capacity as liaison between the lab and visiting delegations, according to congressional and intelligence officials, and people familiar with the case. Wen Ho Lee, who worked at the lab for nearly 20 years, also met with the CIA officer at least once before he and his wife visited China in 1986. ……The CIA connection raises a crucial question in the case: Were Wen Ho Lee's actions the work of a spy, a naive scientist or someone gathering information for the U.S. government? ……."

Judicial Watch 7/31/00 "……After weeks of harassment by Director Louis Freeh and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, during which FBI agents unlawfully entered the home and seized the computer of Notra Trulock, the patriotic whistleblower of the Energy Department who exposed the Los Alamos national security disaster -- Trulock has been forced to strike back by filing a lawsuit for civil rights violations. The complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia this morning, names Louis Freeh and other FBI officials and agents as defendants. Regrettably, the suit proved necessary when Louis Freeh failed to respond to Judicial Watch's offer to settle the matter. Judicial Watch is legal counsel to Mr. Trulock…….Apparently, the FBI, and other agencies such as the CIA, Energy Department, and the Clinton-Gore Administration as a whole, wanted to silence Notra Trulock from telling the truth about their incompetence and coverup of the most egregious breach of national security in U.S. history at the Los Alamos nuclear lab. Under the absolutely false pretext that Notra Trulock had released national security information, FBI officials and agents violated his civil rights. With the help of Judicial Watch, he will now seek redress from the harm inflicted upon him. In pursuing large damages and other relief, Mr. Trulock will be able to take discovery, which will be most revealing. Joining Mr. Trulock in this suit is his landlord, Linda Conrad, whose civil rights were also violated. ……."

Vny.com 7/11/00 Ashley Baker UPI "…….Beginning in the early 1990s, White House officials hoping to simplify government-wide classification requirements repealed a series of key regulations designed to protect classified information at the Department of Energy, according to a report released by congressional auditors Tuesday. ……..Regular inventories, the assignment of unique identification numbers, receipts for internal distribution and approval for reproductions were among the DOE requirements for dealing with classified information nulled by the White House, auditors from the General Accounting Office told members of the House Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee. ……."I didn't believe (my staff) when they showed this to me," said Jim Wells, director of the GAO's Energy, Resources and Science Issues Division. "I wanted to ask the auditing team to go back and verify." …….."

Vny.com 7/11/00 Ashley Baker UPI "…….Glenn Podonsky, director of the DOE's Office of Independent Oversight and Performance Assurance, told lawmakers the changes had their foundation in a 1990 National Security Council assessment intended to establish a single government-wide set of rules for dealing with classified information. ……."These reductions of accountability requirements were part of a general trend toward reduction in security that occurred in the early to mid-1990s, partly as the result of the end of the cold war," Podonsky said. "That general trend included DOE's encouragement for sites to reduce security costs through such actions as downsizing protective forces...or downgrading clearances." ………In 1991, according to Podonsky, DOE dropped a requirement that individuals account for "National Security" information - information that could impact national security but was not directly tied to nuclear weapons design or the production of nuclear materials. In May 1992, DOE ended its accountability requirements for data labeled "secret restricted" information - information that is related directly to nuclear weapons production. Finally, in January 1998, Department officials ended accountability for "top secret" information. ……"

Washington Post 7/22/00 Vernon Loeb and Walter Pincus "….. Attorneys representing former Los Alamos physicist Wen Ho Lee asked yesterday that he be released from jail on bail pending trial, calling his detention "extraordinarily harsh" and challenging key testimony from the FBI's lead agents on the case. In a motion filed in U.S. District Court in Albuquerque, Lee's attorneys also cited declarations by two preeminent nuclear scientists from Los Alamos challenging the government's assertion that a trove of nuclear weapons data downloaded by Lee represented the "crown jewels" of the nation's nuclear weapons program…….. "If the People's Republic of China had already obtained these codes, or were to obtain these codes, it would have little or no effect whatsoever on today's nuclear balance," according to one of the scientists, Harold M. Agnew, who directed Los Alamos from 1970 to 1979 and has advised five presidents and Congress on nuclear weapons issues……."

the Los Angeles Times 7/11/00 Robert Scheer "…….What a joke! Last week the Justice Department admitted that it has no case against Wen Ho Lee in the much ballyhooed China spy caper. But the Los Alamos physicist, held for almost a year in solitary confinement, shackled in his every movement and facing life in prison on trumped-up charges, is not laughing. ……… In response to a demand by the judge in the case that prosecutors state the name of the country that Lee had supposedly intended to supply with nuclear secrets, the prosecutors produced a list of countries friendly to the U.S.--Switzerland, Germany, France, Taiwan, Singapore, Australia and the then-British colony of Hong Kong. All had research institutes to which Lee had sent resumes. ……… That was in 1993, when Lee and other Los Alamos scientists were told that the lab was facing cutbacks and they might need to find employment elsewhere. Lee is now accused of improperly downloading onto tapes computer codes he had been working on. That material wasn't classified as secret. In any case, it would have been quite normal for a lab scientist to preserve examples of his research for possible authorized release later to prospective employers.........."

LA Times 7/20/00 Kenneth Weiss ".....Breaking their silence for the first time, University of California leaders suggested Wednesday that federal officials who have loosened rules and slashed security budgets should share the blame for security violations at the nation's nuclear weapons laboratories. Although contrite for their part in security lapses at the labs, which UC manages for the government, university officials noted that cost-cutting pressure from Congress and the Energy Department have forced the labs over the years to scale back security measures--sometimes at the Energy Department's prompting. ....."

 

Excite News 8/18/00 Richard Benke AP "…..A scientist accused of breaching security at Los Alamos National Laboratory easily passed a private company's polygraph examinations, an FBI agent testified Friday. However, Agent Robert Messemer said the polygraphs administered to Wen Ho Lee by Wackenhut, a security company, on behalf of the federal Energy Department did not follow the protocols accepted by the FBI. Messemer said the FBI does not agree with the conclusions, though they were double-checked by an independent polygrapher and a polygraph supervisor. ……"

New York Times 8/19/00 James Sterngold "…..Prosecutors sought to bolster their case today against a former Los Alamos scientist accused of mishandling nuclear weapons secrets by arguing that a visit to Beijing in 1988 had transformed him into a virtual spy for China. The government argument was the strongest statement to date that the scientist, Wen Ho Lee, was functioning as a spy, even though he is not charged with espionage. ……. The government's aim in making these points, which came during testimony by an F.B.I. agent, appeared to be to impress the judge with the risks of releasing Dr. Lee on bail, as his lawyers are seeking. The defense countered that Dr. Lee had done nothing to conceal the meeting and that nothing classified had been discussed. Judge James A. Parker of Federal District Court expressed exasperation about the hearing's having lasted three days rather than the expected half-day. ……"

NANDO Times & AP 8/18/00 Sue Major Holmes "……An FBI agent has recanted testimony that was key to a judge's decision to deny bail last December to a nuclear weapons scientist who was fired and accused of downloading restricted files. ……… The testimony last year from Agent Robert Messemer had portrayed Wen Ho Lee as guileful when the jailed Los Alamos lab physicist supposedly told a colleague he wanted to use that scientist's computer to print a resume. …….. At a bail review hearing Thursday, Messemer acknowledged that Lee had told the other scientist he wished to download files. "My testimony was incorrect," Messemer told U.S. District Judge James Parker. The judge had cited Lee's "deeply troubling" deceptions in denying him bail in December. ……. The FBI agent said Thursday he did not intentionally attempt to mislead the judge and said he did not believe it was a serious error. …… During Messemer's testimony Thursday, the FBI agent also acknowledged Lee disclosed contacts with scientists from the People's Republic of China in a report to the lab about a 1986 conference he attended. Messemer insisted, however, that under questioning by authorities Lee did not disclose the full scope of those contacts. ……"

Capital Hill Blue 8/18/00 James Sterngold "…..Robert A. Messemer, an F.B.I. supervisory special agent, had said under oath last December that when Dr. Lee improperly downloaded weapons secrets six years ago onto portable computer tapes he had lied to a colleague, Kuok-Mee Ling, in order to get permission to use Dr. Ling's computer. Mr. Messemer had testified that Dr. Lee told Dr. Ling that he was just going to download a résumé, which was not true. But since December, Dr. Lee's defense lawyers have gained access to Dr. Ling's previous grand jury testimony, and it does not mention that Dr. Lee spoke of a résumé. Mr. Messemer today acknowledged that he had made "an honest error" on this critical point in his testimony in December. …….. "At no time did I intentionally provide false testimony," he said. "I made a simple inadvertent error." Mr. Messemer insisted nevertheless that, in other areas, Dr. Lee had been deceptive. ……"

New York Times 78/17/00 James Sterngold "……What was supposed to have been a simple hearing on whether a scientist accused of mishandling nuclear weapons secrets should be released on bail turned today into a bitterly contentious preview of his trial. Bail hearings are generally brief, with decisions usually rendered with relative speed. But this is the third bail hearing for Wen Ho Lee, a former nuclear weapons scientist at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, and as it moves into a second day it has illustrated the unusual gulf between what is in the 59-count indictment and what the government contends that Dr. Lee actually intended. …….At the heart of the issue is the significance of the trove of nuclear data that Dr. Lee is accused of downloading. Two witnesses appeared in Federal District Court here today: John Richter, a former top nuclear weapons designer and intelligence official at Los Alamos, and C. Paul Robinson, the president of the Sandia National Laboratories. Mr. Richter, who is highly familiar with the obscure computer codes that Dr. Lee is accused of downloading, said perhaps 99 percent of the information had already been made public in various forums and would not be that useful to a foreign country. ……Asked if national security would be harmed if the tapes found their way into foreign hands, Dr. Richter replied, "I don't believe that it would have any deleterious affect at all." But Dr. Robinson maintained that if the tapes landed in hostile hands, the global balance of power could be shifted. "I've never seen anything even close to it in approximation of the potential damage," he said. ……"

New York Times 9/2/00 James Sterngold "…..Two federal appeals court judges today halted the imminent release on bail of Wen Ho Lee, the former Los Alamos scientist accused of mishandling nuclear weapons secrets. The delay in Dr. Lee's release, which had been scheduled for noon today, was a result of last-minute maneuvers by prosecutors that provoked charges of deception from defense lawyers at an unusually emotional court hearing here. The prosecutors denied any deception. …….. The order, which appeared to have taken the judge and Dr. Lee's lawyers by surprise, was a clear indication of the intensity of the government's desire to keep Dr. Lee imprisoned before his trial, which is scheduled to begin in November. …….."

U.S. News & World Report 9/11/00 Chitra Ragavan "…… His reputation has been dragged through mud. Still, after spending nine months in solitary confinement, nuclear scientist turned spy suspect Wen Ho Lee was longing to get some dirt under his fingernails. By puttering in his backyard garden, that is. It seemed as if that would happen Friday, a week after Albuquerque federal Judge James A. Parker expressed deep skepticism about the strength of the government's case and prepared to send Lee home on $1 million bond. But the 10th Circuit Court in Denver halted Lee's release when notified that the Justice Department planned to file an appeal. …….."

New York Times 9/5/00 AP "…..The federal judge who tried to release the fired nuclear scientist Wen Ho Lee from jail on $1 million bail says he is no longer convinced that Dr. Lee downloaded some of the country's most sensitive nuclear secrets. Judge James Parker of Federal District Court, in an unsealed opinion released late on Friday, offered for the first time details of his reasons for wanting Dr. Lee released. "What the government described in December 1999 as the 'crown jewels' of the United States nuclear weapons program no longer is so clearly deserving of that label," Judge Parker wrote. ……. Dr. Lee was to have been released on Friday from the Santa Fe County jail, where he has been kept since December. But an appeals court halted his release at the last minute while it considered an appeal from the government. …….. Judge Parker, who set strict conditions on Dr. Lee's release, including electronic monitoring and a phone tap, was critical of the appellate court's decision. He said he would have rejected the government's request for a delay if the appellate court had not intervened. …….. ".

Albuquerque Journal 8/24/00 "…… A federal judge on Thursday said he will grant pretrial release to fired Los Alamos National Laboratory scientist Wen Ho Lee. The temporary freedom is not immediate. In a written order, U.S. District Judge James A. Parker set a hearing for Tuesday to discuss Lee's conditions of release. The ruling comes after a three-day bail hearing last week for Lee, who is facing trial in November on 59 counts of mishandling nuclear secrets. He could be sentenced to life in prison if convicted. ……"

Bloomberg Top World News 8/24/00 Ashley Gross "…..Former Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee can be released on $1 million bail while awaiting trial for allegedly mishandling U.S. nuclear secrets, a federal judge ruled today, Associated Press reported. Lee had twice been denied release on bail. U.S. District Judge James Parker ruled that Lee could be released on bail after Lee's lawyers persuaded him that Lee would appear for the trial and wasn't a threat to the nation's safety, AP said. A hearing is set for Tuesday to determine the conditions of Lee's release. Parker proposed that Lee be required to stay at his home in White Rock, New Mexico, under surveillance most of the time, AP said. He would be able to leave the house only in the company of one of his lawyers. ……"

Associated Press 8/25/00 "……A federal judge has agreed to free a former Los Alamos scientist accused of mishandling nuclear secrets, saying the government's case ``no longer has the requisite clarity and persuasive character necessary'' to keep Wen Ho Lee in jail pending his trial. U.S. District Judge James Parker's ruling Thursday follows a hearing last week in which Lee's lawyers cast doubt on the solidity of the government's case and on the sensitivity of the nuclear material involved. Two previous bail requests for Lee since his arrest Dec. 10 had been rejected. ……."

CNN 8/29/00 "……Granting a request by government attorneys, a federal judge postponed a Tuesday hearing on the matter of releasing nuclear scientist Wen Ho Lee from jail on $1 million bail. ……. Judge James Parker rescheduled the hearing for Friday. He gave the government's attorneys until then to file an appeal of his decision last week to release Lee until Lee stands trial in November on charges of mishandling sensitive nuclear information while working at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico. ……"

AP 8/29/00 H Josef Hebert "……Scientists from "sensitive" countries such as China, Russia and Iran are expected soon to resume normal ties with the Energy Department's three nuclear weapons research labs, ending a 10-month ban on virtually all such contact. Concerned about safeguarding nuclear secrets, Congress last November barred scientists from 25 "sensitive" countries from visiting the labs, having contact with lab scientists or access to any computer systems at the facilities, even unclassified ones. While a small number of waivers to this policy have been allowed, the moratorium has severely disrupted normal contact - and research unrelated to nuclear weapons - between the U.S. lab scientists and their foreign counterparts. The law said the moratorium could be lifted only after directors of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Central Intelligence Agency determined that the foreign visitors program had safeguards to prevent the loss of nuclear secrets. FBI Director Louis Freeh and CIA Director George Tenet on Tuesday informed key members of Congress they had concluded that the system meets those security needs. ……"

Albuquerque Journal 9/14/00 Ian Hoffman "…..A beaming Wen Ho Lee walked free Wednesday after pleading guilty to a single felony and with a federal judge's rare apology for being "misled" into jailing him. "I sincerely apologize to you, Dr. Lee, for the unfair manner in which you were held in custody by the executive branch," said Chief U.S. District Judge James A. Parker, in a rebuke to the Clinton administration. The judge castigated Attorney General Janet Reno, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson and New Mexico's former U.S. Attorney and congressional candidate John Kelly as "the top decision-makers . . . who have caused the embarrassment in the way this case was began and was handled." "They did not embarrass me alone. They have embarrassed our entire nation and each of us who is a citizen of it," Parker told a stunned courtroom. ……. "I tell you with great sadness that I feel I was led astray by the executive branch - by the Department of Justice, by the FBI and by the (former) U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico," he said. …..Justice officials "respectfully disagreed" with Parker and stood by their handling of the Lee prosecution. ….."

CBSNEWS 9/16/00 "…….Wen Ho Lee is still making news, despite his release Wednesday by a federal judge who blasted the government for its treatment of the Los Alamos nuclear research scientist. …… Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, in an interview with CBS News 60 Minutes, says there will be more information coming out about Lee. "The issue is not over. There are some very serious additional problems that Dr. Lee has," Richardson told Mike Wallace. …….. On Thursday, in a rare public rebuke of the operations of the Justice and Energy departments, Mr. Clinton said he was "quite troubled" by the way the case was handled. Just hours before, Reno refused to apologize for the case, saying the Justice Department and FBI "made the best decision we could based on the evidence and the law and I feel very comfortable with that." Reno said Lee, who spent nine months in solitary confinement, could have ended his ordeal sooner if he had cooperated. ……… In addition to the possible discussion with the president, Reno will have to answer questions about the probe from a Senate panel that plans hearings on the matter. …… "

Scripps Howard News Service 9/14/00 Rick Maese "….Federal prosecutor George Stamboulidis says he only came to town ``looking for a good trial.'' Case No. 99-1417 -- the United States v. Wen Ho Lee -- looked to be just that: a jewel for Stamboulidis, a young and already successful federal prosecutor from New York……… ``Certainly, we would have prevailed at trial,'' Stamboulidis, 38, said in an interview just a few hours after Lee was released from federal custody Wednesday afternoon. ``The only question is, 'At what cost?'''……… Despite taking a hammering from U.S. District Chief Judge James Parker, Stamboulidis, an assistant U.S. attorney and the nation's lead prosecutor against Lee, adamantly defended the case and the federal government……. Said Stamboulidis: ``He's entitled to his opinion. However, I disagree wildly. He's not charged with protecting the nation's national security interests. I'm very proud of the decisions that the attorney general has made. You don't want wimpy decisions when someone has stolen your nuclear secrets. You want someone who will pursue it vigorously.''….."

AP 9/13/00 Richard Benke "……After nine months in solitary, Wen Ho Lee pleaded guilty Wednesday to just one count of mishandling nuclear secrets and was set free by an apologetic judge who said the government's actions ''embarrassed our entire nation.'' U.S. District Judge James Parker was bound by the plea agreement to sentence the fired Los Alamos National Laboratory scientist to 278 days -- essentially, time served since his arrest last December. ''I sincerely apologize to you, Dr. Lee, for the unfair manner in which you were held in custody by the executive branch,'' Parker told him. Parker said the Department of Justice and Energy ''have embarrassed our entire nation and each of us who is a citizen of it.'' The judge said he was only sorry that the plea agreement prevented disclosure of information that would have shed light on the reasons for the detention. Lee's supporters have said he was singled out as a Chinese-American. ……The judge said he did not blame the prosecutors. ''It is only the top decision-makers in the executive branch of the government, in particular the Department of Justice and the Department of Energy,'' he said. ……"

AP 9/14/00 "……President Clinton said Thursday he was "quite troubled" by the handling of the Wen Ho Lee case and that the government could not justify the way it dealt with the former Los Alamos laboratory scientist. Clinton expressed regrets just hours after Attorney General Janet Reno refused to apologize for the case. ……"

The Washington Times 9/11/00 Richard benke AP "….Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee, who was fired and jailed on charges of mishandling nuclear-weapons secrets, has reached a plea bargain in which he will plead guilty to one charge and cooperate with federal investigators, Justice Department sources said. ……Mr. Lee will plead guilty to one felony count of unlawfully retaining nuclear-weapon secrets, be sentenced to time already served and be immediately freed following a hearing, according to two senior officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity……. The officials said Mr. Lee, who has been jailed for nine months, has agreed to provide information on seven missing computer tapes with data on nuclear-weapons design and testing. Three other tapes with information Mr. Lee reportedly downloaded have been recovered……."

New York Times 9/12/00 David Johnston "……An investigation that began eight years ago as an effort to determine how China obtained highly classified information from American weapons labs about one of the country's most advanced nuclear warheads appears to be back where it started, with the mystery still unsolved. Although Wen Ho Lee, a nuclear weapons scientist in New Mexico, became the government's leading suspect in the investigation of the alleged theft of warhead data, he was never charged with espionage or accused of any crime connected with the loss of information for a device known as the W-88. Nor did the government ever obtain any direct evidence linking Mr. Lee to the suspected theft…….. Government officials said today that they were prepared to accept a plea bargain in which Mr. Lee would plead guilty to a single count of improperly downloading secret information. The material Mr. Lee downloaded was unrelated to the suspected warhead design theft that prompted the government's investigation of possible Chinese espionage……… The agreement effectively means that prosecutors have ended their long pursuit of Mr. Lee as a possible source of the stolen warhead data, once described by government experts as "the crown jewels" of the United States' nuclear secrets. It also leaves them with no clear answer about how the Chinese obtained the warhead data or from whom……."

New York Times 9/12/00 David Johnston "…… What remains of the inquiry is an investigation into whether there exists another explanation or different suspect for the loss of the W-88 technology, which began with a government effort to pinpoint the source of the leak. The new inquiry included looking for any possible clues and textual "finger prints" on a Chinese document that the C.I.A. got in 1995 and had long resided at the heart of the spy case. It has previously been reported that its Chinese text cited five key attributes of the W-88 warhead, including two measurements accurate to within four-hundredths of an inch. That information was a strong indicator that the Chinese had obtained national secrets…….. But last year, the experts said, a federal panel made up of people from the Central Intelligence Agency, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the State Department and the Energy Department and its weapons laboratories was surprised to learn that such secret information on the W-88 had been distributed widely beyond Los Alamos, intelligence experts said……. Copies of one detailed description of the warhead were distributed to 548 addresses, including ones in the Defense Department, the military services, the National Guard, and federal agencies and contractors like the Lockheed Missile and Space Corporation. As a result, the lost secrets, it appeared, were available to thousands of individuals scattered throughout the nation's arms complex and thus available from myriad sources…….."

Time Daily Online 9/17/00 Michael Duffy "…….. It was hard to find anyone left standing-much less standing tall - after the government's strange case against nuclear scientist Wen Ho Lee came crashing to the ground last week. No one was bleeding so heavily as the FBI and its director, Louis Freeh, whose top agent recanted some of his testimony against the 60-year-old Los Alamos engineer. But there was rubble everywhere you looked. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, whose department had ignored security lapses at Los Alamos for years, was walking around in a daze. Rescue workers were still searching for Attorney General Janet Reno and her deputy, Eric Holder, who were trying to explain why they had suddenly agreed to drop 58 of 59 charges against a man once accused of stealing the "crown jewels" of America's nuclear arsenal. When master survivalist Bill Clinton came out of hiding, it was to confide to reporters that he had "always had reservations" about some aspects of the case - words that recalled the way he ducked responsibility for the Waco fiasco in 1993. ………And though the neighbors in White Rock, N.M., just down the road from Los Alamos, put out flags last Wednesday and welcomed Lee home with a big backyard party on Barcelona Avenue, the man at the center of the wreckage still has a lot of explaining to do. Lee won back his freedom only after pleading guilty to a single felony count of mishandling national-defense information, which means he downloaded the equivalent of 400,000 pages of classified data about the U.S. nuclear-weapons program onto an unsecured computer system and then transferred them to high-volume cassettes. Lee had refused to spell out why he spent an estimated 40 hours over 70 days downloading all that data, what he did with much of it or why he tried repeatedly to enter a restricted area after losing his security clearance - once, around 3:30 a.m. on Christmas Eve. As part of his plea agreement, Lee promised to explain everything to investigators. He will never again be able to vote, however, or serve on a jury. ……"

Macon Telegraph 10/9/00 Don Schanche Jr. "…… In the aftermath of the U.S. government's disastrous prosecution of scientist Wen Ho Lee, professor Jeng-Nan Juang made a decision. "I don't want to get involved in any U.S. government research any more," said the associate professor of electrical engineering at Mercer University's School of Engineering in Macon. Juang is one of many Asian-American academics and professionals in the midstate who have looked at the Lee case with concern, seeing potential implications for themselves.........."

New York Times 10/7/00 James Sterngold "……..Three and a half weeks after the former Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee entered a plea agreement that the government said would resolve urgent issues of national security, the government has not yet scheduled a meeting with Dr. Lee. Prosecutors want to know why Dr. Lee downloaded a trove of nuclear weapons secrets and what happened to seven missing computer tapes packed with information. But despite the government's insistence on the urgency of these questions - the lead prosecutor, George Stamboulidis, had said hundreds of millions of lives hung in the balance - the prosecutors canceled their first appointment to debrief Dr. Lee and have not spoken with his lawyers about scheduling another one………"

Washington Times 10/6/00 Paul Weyrich "........ We recently saw another bizarre twist in the Chinese nuclear espionage story. Just two weeks after President Clinton left his attorney general and FBI director twisting in the wind by publicly questioning their handling of the Wen Ho Lee case, Janet Reno and Louis Freeh were on Capitol Hill vigorously defending their actions. Both refused to apologize for their handling of Lee, and continued to accuse him of removing nuclear secrets from Los Alamos National Laboratory. Mr. Lee's take, according to their joint statement, included the "complete nuclear weapons design capability of Los Alamos at the time - approximately 50 years worth of nuclear weapons development, at the expense of hundreds of billions of dollars." ...........

Washington Times 10/6/00 Paul Weyrich "........ Just a few weeks ago, doubt had been cast on the sensitivity of this material by one of the most experienced nuclear experts in the country during a bail hearing for Lee. John Richter, a Los Alamos scientist testified that 99 percent of the material Lee loaded onto unclassified computer tapes was already publicly available. Mr. Richter's testimony, along with admissions of the FBI's misleading testimony to federal Judge Parker, is credited with unraveling the government's case against Lee. .......Incredibly, Mr. Richter reversed himself and proclaimed that he was only referring to the computer software and basic principles of physics. Lee's tapes also included, according to Mr. Richter, data representing "the design knowledge and physics information developed by our nuclear labs over a period of 50 years and over 1,000 nuclear tests." He forgot to add - at a cost of billions of taxpayer dollars........ We also learned that Lee made additional copies of the tapes and that the total of tapes now unaccounted for is 17, not seven, as previously reported........"

Washington Times 10/6/00 Paul Weyrich "........First, it is evident, once again, that the administration is just not interested in getting to the bottom of what Paul Redmond, the renowned CIA spy-catcher, has labeled a bigger espionage case than either the Rosenbergs or Aldrich Ames. Five years on, the administration has yet to dig deeply into just how or where the Chinese acquired the classified nuclear weapons information described in the Cox Report. The FBI's "investigation" has been restarted once, and is now rumored to be restarting yet again. Maybe this administration just doesn't want to know what happened. The administration walked away from the Wen Ho Lee prosecution with breathtaking speed. ........... "

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/bluesky_smith/20000927_xcsof_the_secret.shtml Charles Smith WorldNetDaily ".........The Sockowitz files include secret reports on cryptography from the NSA, a secret report on Russia from the CIA, secret cables from France, secret documents on U.S.-Russian space launches, even materials on U.S. efforts to purchase weapon's grade uranium from Russia. Sockowitz also had the complete biographies on foreign political leaders in Bosnia, Croatia, India, Turkey, and Russia. The CIA deemed the material so secret that it tried to seize Sockowitz's files as soon as it learned what had happened. ............ The Sockowitz files were discovered only after an anonymous tip to the public-interest group Judicial Watch in October 1996. Judicial Watch then deposed Sockowitz, a former New York state administrative law judge. Sockowitz testified that he was an "advance person" for the 1992 Clinton-Gore campaign. He was put on the 1993 inaugural committee at the request of vice president AI Gore's office. ...... Gore's office also approved that Sockowitz be appointed as a Commerce Department special general counsel in November 1993. At the Commerce Department, Sockowitz worked with John Huang "vetting" companies that wished to travel with Ron Brown on trade trips. ........ ........ Despite the security breach, the Reno Justice Department and FBI Director Freeh decided there is no case against Sockowitz. The Commerce Department's inspector general also decided against a probe. Sockowitz claimed his reasons for taking the files were innocent and his claims were taken without question. No federal law enforcement official has ever questioned Ira Sockowitz. ......."

Albuquerque Jounal 10/3/00 AP ".....Some employees at Los Alamos National Laboratory are urging the northern New Mexico United Way agency to stop funding the Boy Scouts because of the group's ban on gay troop leaders. The workers say as long as the Boy Scouts are on the list, solicitation of pledges from Los Alamos lab violates the lab's policy against discrimination. ......"

Reuters via Yahoo! 10/5/00 "……Republican George W. Bush said there is a ``dark cloud'' over U.S. weapons laboratories while Democrat Al Gore urged more concern for the environment as the presidential contenders answered questions crafted by the journal Science.. ….The Science questionnaire was published in Thursday's edition of the journal and online at http://www.sciencemag.org. ………. While not specifically mentioning alleged security breaches at Los Alamos, Bush said, ``Inadequate leadership, oversight and management by the Department of Energy have left a dark cloud over our national labs.'' ``America's security should not be a matter of lost and found,'' he said. ``In my administration, our national labs will be secure again, our vital information will be sealed again and our nuclear secrets will be secret again.'' ……"

10/2/00 "…..OAKLAND, Calif. - The University of California has launched disciplinary action against several staffers at the Los Alamos National Laboratory following the temporary disappearance of two computer hard drives containing nuclear secrets earlier this year. ……. University officials declined to provide further information, citing privacy concerns. In a news release issued Friday, they noted that as with any university disciplinary proceeding, the targeted staffers "have extensive rights to appeal." They also noted that the proposed discipline was "independent of any that may be taken as a result of an ongoing investigation by the Justice Department." ……"

Reuters/Variety David Horowitz 10/3/00 "…….. Is Wen Ho Lee guilty? Wen Ho Lee illegally removed 400,000 files from the nation's top nuclear weapons lab during a period of years when he had repeated contacts with Chinese government scientists and at a time when the Chinese Communist dictatorship was systematically stealing the secrets of America's most sophisticated nuclear arsenal. His response to the FBI investigation was that of a seemingly guilty man. He destroyed files in his possession and repeatedly tried to break into the lab after his access was denied. Yet, Wen Ho Lee has acquired an almost martyr-like status as a victim of government persecution, and even of government "racism." ……Begin with Clinton's peculiar apology (without explanation) for a prosecution he himself was responsible for. The U.S. Attorney who handled the Lee case is Clinton's friend and former college roommate. Within a week of Clinton's apology, he was in New Mexico to raise money for the same prosecutor's run for a state office. The argument of some of Lee's supporters that an anti-Chinese bias was behind an intemperate Justice Department prosecution is hard to square with the fact that the current Deputy Attorney General in charge of civil rights is Chinese himself..........

Reuters/Variety David Horowitz 10/3/00 "…….. Columnist William Safire and others have suggested a more plausible explanation. The zealous pursuit of Lee followed the release of the bi-partisan Cox report detailing the theft of America's nuclear arsenal by the Chinese government. Much of this theft took place during Clinton's watch. Moreover, the Clinton Administration had been aggressive in lifting security controls on satellite, missile and computer technologies particularly instrumental in developing nuclear-tipped ballistic weaponry. The Clinton Administration had then sold those technologies to the Chinese. The Cox Report had come on the heels of congressional investigations by government oversight committees into the unprecedented access given by the Clinton-Gore Administration to Chinese military and intelligence officials and their agents, possibly in exchange for illegal contributions to the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton-Gore campaign. Senator Fred Thompson had opened his hearings with the charge -- based on CIA testimony -- that the Chinese government had systematically set out to influence the presidential elections of 1996, which put Clinton and Gore in the White House. More than a hundred witnesses called to testify about these facts took the Fifth Amendment or fled the country. Finally, among the charges leveled at the Clinton-Gore team was that the Administration routinely authorized electronic surveillance of U.S. citizens (some seven hundred wire taps were approved) but that the Administration had turned down the FBI's request for a tap on Wen Ho Lee. In fact, this was virtually the only tap the Clinton Justice Department refused………. In sum, the zealous prosecution of Wen Ho Lee, according to this theory, took place only after a period of endless foot-dragging and dangerous laxity on security issues, followed by the sensational revelations of the Cox Report. At this juncture, Clinton's personal political interest dictated a vigorous effort to establish his vigilance, particularly in relation to the security threat from the Chinese. Only when his personal political jeopardy was over (for example, now) was he able to resume the posture of minimizing the problem itself......."

MSNBC 10/3/00 "......NOTRA TRULOCK, the former head of counterintelligence at the Energy Department, testified Tuesday that a New York Times reporter had told him that Richardson identified Lee as the primary suspect in the investigation. It was Trulock's first public comment on the case since he abruptly resigned from the Energy Department in August 1999 amid growing controversy over his role in the Lee case........ "One of the reporters involved in the publication ... told me directly that Secretary Richardson had provided to him the name of Wen Ho Lee," Trulock testified at a hearing before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee that is looking into the government's handling of the Lee case. Asked if he could name the reporter, Trulock replied, "James Risen, New York Times."........."

MSNBC 10/3/00 "......Lee's lawyers have filed a Privacy Act lawsuit against both the Energy and Justice departments claiming that Richardson, among others, leaked Lee's name to various news organizations. ......Risen was one of two New York Times reporters who in March 1999 broke the story of an alleged spying incident at Los Alamos National Laboratory in which China had obtained U.S. nuclear secrets. Lee was not identified in the initial story, but his name surfaced in a follow-up report in The Times and in stories by other news organizations, including MSNBC.com, several days later....... The Energy Department did not immediately responded to request for comment on the charge by Trulock, who has himself been accused by senior Energy Department officials of making Lee the focus of the agency's investigation of alleged spying owing to what one investigator claimed were "racist views toward minority groups."........"

MSNBC 10/3/00 "......At Tuesday's hearing, Trulock disputed the characterizations of his views and charged that Energy Department investigators Robert Vrooman and Charles Washington had made false public statements about his conduct during the investigation. It was Washington who charged in a sworn affidavit filed on Lee's behalf that Trulock had exhibited "racist views toward minority groups." Vrooman, in a similar affidavit, charged that Lee had been unfairly targeted by Trulock and others because he is a Chinese-American. Vrooman, who retired from the Energy Department last year, was himself reprimanded by Richardson for allegedly failing to assist the FBI investigation of suspected Chinese espionage. Trulock said both Vrooman and Washington, as well as other senior officials at the lab and in the FBI, had been briefed throughout his investigation and had never expressed concerns about its direction until public criticism erupted following the near-collapse of the government's case against Lee. He said he has filed lawsuits alleging libel and slander against Richardson, Vrooman, Washington and Lee in an effort to clear his name......."

San Francisco Chronicle 9/21/00 Martin Butcher Theresa Hitchens "…… SOME U.S. LEADERS are toying with an idea for a new nuclear bomb that could have turned NATO's campaign in Kosovo into a nuclear war. For more than 50 years, there has been a taboo against unleashing the terrible power of the atom in war, but some in the U.S. nuclear weapons establishment and their political allies now envision a world where nuclear combat could become almost a commonplace event. ……… The aim would be to kill national leaders such as Saddam Hussein or Slobodan Milosevic, or to destroy stocks of biological/chemical weapons held by so-called ``rogue'' states. The thinking -- detailed in a recent paper, ``Nuclear Weapons in the 21st Century'' by Stephen Younger, associate director for nuclear weapons at Los Alamos National Laboratory -- is that such bunkers are often in urban areas, where use of a ``normal'' nuclear weapon would cause unacceptable damage and casualties to the civilian population. A ``mini-nuke,'' proponents argue, would be a sure way of killing a dictator, or wiping out stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, with little or no release of those agents into the environment. ......"

FBI Director Louis Freeh's Senate Testimony in teh Wen Ho Lee Case 9/27/00 Freeper SVTCobra "…… CHRONOLOGY OF SIGNIFICANT EVENTS BETWEEN 12/23/98 AND 2/10/99

December 23, 1998 (Wednesday)
2:18 p.m. DOE polygraph of Lee is completed
5:00 p.m. (approx.) Lee is advised that his access to secure areas of X Division and to both his secure and open X Division computer accounts has been suspended
9:36 p.m. Lee makes 4 attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through Stairwell 2)
9:39 p.m. Lee attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through South elevator)

December 24, 1998 (Thursday)
3:31 a.m. Lee attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through Stairwell 2)


December 24, 1998 -January 3, 1999 (Thursday through Sunday) Los Alamos National Laboratory Closed for holidays


January 4, 1999 (Monday)
9:42 p.m. Lee succeeds in having his "open" computer account reactivated and deletes 3 computer files

January 12, 1999 (Tuesday)
Lee deletes 1 computer file

January 17, 1999 (Sunday)
1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. FBI conducts interview of Lee at his residence

January 20, 1999 (Wednesday)
11:45 a.m. - 12:05 p.m. Lee deletes 47 computer files

January 21, 1999 (Thursday)
10:09 a.m. Lee asks computer "help desk" why files he is deleting are not "going away"
10:46 a.m. Lee attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through Stairwell 3)

January 30, 1999 (Saturday)
2:54 a.m. Los Alamos officials deactivate Lee's "open" computer account in X Division after discovering that it has been improperly reactivated

February 2, 1999 (Tuesday)
4:52 p.m. Lee attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through South Door)

February 3, 1999 (Wednesday)
9:42 a.m. Lee attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through South Door)
1:11 p.m. Lee attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through South Door)
1:46 p.m. Lee makes 4 attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through South Door)

February 8, 1999 (Monday)
Between 1:00 and 1:30 p.m. FBI contacts Lee and asks to meet with him to discuss conducting interview and polygraph
1:11 p.m. Lee attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through Stairwell 2)
4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. FBI meets with Lee and arranges for interview and polygraph over the next two days
6:34 p.m. Lee attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through South Door)

February 9, 1999 (Tuesday)
11:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Lee deletes approximately 93 computer files
1:00 p.m. FBI interviews Lee and obtains his agreement to undergo polygraph
9:03 p.m. Lee attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through South Door)

February 10, 1999 (Wednesday)
9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Lee undergoes FBI polygraph
4:10 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Lee deletes approximately 310 computer files
5:01 p.m. Lee attempts to enter secure area of X Division (through South Door)

 

NUCLEAR WEAPONS RESTRICTED DATA DOWNLOADED BY DR. LEE ONTO PORTABLE TAPES

The Department of Energy has classified this information and never released it to the public


Input deck/input file information including:
-electronic blueprints of the exact dimensions and geometry of this nation's nuclear weapons, including our most sophisticated modern warheads

Data files including:
-nuclear bomb testing protocol libraries reflecting the data collected from actual tests of nuclear weapons
-data concerning nuclear weapons bomb test problems, yield calculations, and other nuclear weapons design and detonation information
-information relating to the physical and radioactive properties of materials used to construct nuclear weapons

-Source codes including:
-data used for determining by simulation the validity of nuclear weapons designs and for comparing bomb test results with predicted results

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

STEPS REQUIRED TO DOWN-PARTITION, DOWNLOAD, AND CREATE TAPES

1. Log onto Secure computer system by entering "password" and "Z number"
2. Access data in Red (secure) partition then type "save" and "CL=U" (Classification level equals unclassified)
3. Access C Machine and type commands to down-partition from Secure partition onto Open (unsecure) Rho Machine
4. Access Rho Machine to save the data onto Green (unsecure) directory
5. Log onto colleague's computer outside of X Division and insert tape into tape drive
6. Access Open directory and copy files onto portable tape

Newsday 9/22/00 Richard Benke AP "……Wen Ho Lee's supporters are seeking a presidential pardon for the Los Alamos scientist who was freed last week in a plea agreement. Lee, 60, pleaded guilty Sept. 13 to one of 59 counts against him. The other 58 were dropped in a negotiated settlement of the nine-month national security prosecution that had kept him in solitary confinement.,……"

 

CBSNEWS 9/21/00 AP "…. Thirteen former employees of an environmental testing company were accused of altering lab results that were used to determine safety at hazardous waste sites across the country. Between January 1994 and December 1997, Intertek Testing Services Environmental Labs Inc. analyzed thousands of projects for governmental and private companies and had billings of $35.7 million, U.S. Attorney Paul Coggins said Thursday. ……. "In thousands of tests, reports proved to be false and were known by the lab to be false because the lab had failed to properly calibrate the machines," Coggins said. ….. The defendants altered data to make testing instruments appear to be accurate within the limits required for quality control when they were not, federal prosecutors said. ….."

TBO.com 9/20/00 John Solomon "……Shortly before finalizing a plea bargain with Wen Ho Lee, the government learned that he had created a duplicate set of the original computer tapes he made containing nuclear secrets, officials said. The FBI informed Congress this week that the disclosure of the copies brings to 20 the number of tapes Lee is suspected of creating with U.S. nuclear secrets he downloaded from secure Energy Department computers, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity. ……. Lee has agreed to tell the FBI what happened to the 17 tapes - seven originals and 10 copies - that have not been accounted for, the officials said. Three tapes were found in Lee's office at the Los Alamos, N.M., nuclear weapons lab earlier in the investigation. ……"

townhall.com 9/18/00 Steve Chapman "……..It's a familiar pattern in the Clinton administration: When something goes terribly wrong, you can usually find Janet Reno's fingerprints at the scene. Last week, the Justice Department not only had to virtually surrender in its legal fight with former Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee, but had to hear the presiding federal judge declare that its handling of the case had "embarrassed our entire nation." He wasn't the only one who felt that way. President Clinton, who knows something about being hounded by overzealous prosecutors, said he was "quite troubled" by how Lee was treated. But his chief law enforcement official refused to apologize. Reno assured reporters, "I'm not embarrassed." Maybe she is constitutionally incapable of embarrassment. ……. A few days ago, the attorney general's subordinates were forging ahead with a prosecution aimed at putting Lee in prison for the rest of his life. But Wednesday, the prosecution case had vanished like smoke up the chimney, leaving only some ashes behind. Originally charged with 59 serious offenses, Lee pleaded guilty to a single relatively minor charge of downloading classified material and left the courtroom a free man. ………"

UPI via VNY 12/24/00 "......Investigators questioning former Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee have moved the focus of their inquiries to his links with Taiwan, the Washington Post reports Sunday...... In particular, the paper says, Lee's FBI interrogators are probing two visits he made in 1998 to the island's leading military research facility....... The interrogation under oath by FBI agents - which the Post reports took ten days and ended Dec. 12 - was also part of the deal. Lee was promised immunity from further prosecution providing he was honest with his interrogators........ The Post reports that Lee told investigators that he visited the Chung Shan Institute for Science and technology in April-May 1998, and again in December that year to do consulting work on unclassified scientific matters. The paper reports that the Institute was involved in Taiwanese efforts to develop nuclear weapons, and adds that investigators say Lee's travel expenses on both occasions were met by a Taiwanese businessman for whom he had consulted in the late 1980's and early 1990's........ Although Lee's visits to the Institute were approved by the management at Los Alamos, details were never passed to the Department of Energy's counterintelligence office, the paper reports, adding that Lee also failed to disclose he was paid a fee of about $5,000 for the work he did there......"

Newsday 12/15/00 AP ".....Deepening the mystery of Wen Ho Lee, none of the more than 10 tapes pulled out of a New Mexico landfill by the FBI are the ones made by the U.S. nuclear scientist, The Washington Post reported Friday. ...... Lee told investigators he threw the material, consisting of downloaded data on nuclear secrets, into the trash at Los Alamos National Laboratory in 1999. ....... Lee told investigators after he was freed from prison in a plea bargain in September that he got rid of the tapes after losing his security clearance by putting them in a Dumpster outside the Los Alamos laboratory ..... "

Wall Street Journal 12/8/00 Laurie P Cohen "....... In early November 1998, David Kitchen, the head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's New Mexico office, got a phone call from his deputy with bad news from FBI headquarters in Washington. The deputy told Mr. Kitchen that top officials in the agency's national security division "aren't happy with how the Lee case is progressing." Mr. Kitchen's baffled response: "What Lee case?"....... It wasn't surprising that the name Wen Ho Lee didn't ring any bells for Mr. Kitchen, who had arrived in Albuquerque three months earlier. FBI agents had been investigating the Los Alamos National Laboratory scientist sporadically since 1982, based on sketchy indications that he might be a spy. But the case was a black hole, characterized by bursts of activity followed by long periods of inaction....... In late 1998, however, FBI Director Louis Freeh's top deputies suddenly decided that the FBI case was a priority and began pressing Albuquerque to get moving. The reason: The mood in Washington was changing........A special congressional committee investigating Chinese espionage latched onto an unconfirmed report that Dr. Lee had leaked U.S. nuclear-warhead data to Beijing, and was also delving into why the scientist's access to classified information hadn't been revoked. Within months, as more than 100 FBI employees descended on the bureau's local outpost in Albuquerque, Dr. Lee became the nation's most-renowned espionage suspect since Ethel and Julius Rosenberg......."

Wall Street Journal 12/8/00 Laurie P Cohen "....... The official line from the Justice Department is that the plea deal was struck for fear that classified information would be released at trial and because a deal would be the fastest way to determine what happened to the missing tapes. As the first anniversary of Dr. Lee's arrest approaches this Sunday, the case remains in limbo, with the charges settled but the facts maddeningly unresolved. Washington still doesn't know if the Chinese government has obtained U.S. nuclear-weapon secrets. Mr. Messemer is the subject of an internal FBI investigation into his professional conduct, but is still helping out on the case.........Dr. Lee, unemployed since March of last year, has signed contracts to tell his story in a book and a TV miniseries. In keeping with his plea agreement, he has given FBI agents tips on where his missing tapes might be. Recently, more than a dozen FBI employees were spotted digging through a frozen landfill in New Mexico. ......"

INSIGHT magazine 12/8/00 J Michael Waller "…… Insight uncovers astonishing new security lapses by the Energy Department that, via public e-mail, compromised U.S. nuclear-weapons designs and next-generation weapons plans. ...... Evidence of terrible security lapses at Department of Energy (DOE) nuclear-weapons labs continues to mount - thanks, ironically, to defenders of Wen Ho Lee, the Los Alamos, N.M., scientist who, according to the FBI, passed many of the most sensitive U.S. nuclear-weapons secrets to the People's Republic of China. ………..Insight has learned that the sloppy - and possibly illegal - DOE handling of other nuclear-weapons secrets may have compromised the entire U.S. nuclear arsenal to other countries, including Russia. Senior DOE officials knew about the breach, but failed to inform Congress. One former U.S. official with firsthand knowledge tells Insight, "It all got kind of hushed up." …….."

INSIGHT magazine 12/8/00 J Michael Waller "……One of those cases to which [Chares] Washington refers, sources tell Insight, involves the aforesaid compromise of the entire U.S. nuclear-weapons inventory, as well as plans for next-generation nuclear weapons, to Russia and other countries. Yet DOE did not recommend punishment for the offending individual, sources tell Insight. …….That shocking and undoubted compromise occurred during preparation of a classified report of the DOE's Stockpile Stewardship and Management Plan known as the "Green Book." According to Assistant Secretary of Energy for Defense Programs Victor Reis, the Green Book "describes in detail our plans for maintaining the safety and reliability of the nuclear-weapons stockpile in the absence of underground testing and no new-design nuclear-warhead production." DOE presented the secret report to Congress in 1997 and released a declassified version in response to a lawsuit from disarmament groups early the following year. ......... According to sources, a Los Alamos lab editor responsible for compiling the Green Book sent edited sections back to the authors over the open Internet - a massive security breach that deposited the document, piece by secret piece, on open computer servers in cyberspace. "Every server it went through backed up automatically," says an Insight source. "Anyone looking for the information could have found it." Whether it is still on the servers depends upon the length of time between backups. ….."

ABC 12/8/00 "….. FBI agents digging in a trash dump may have recovered some of the missing secret data tapes that former Los Alamos National Laboratory scientist Wen Ho Lee is believed to have thrown away five years ago, ABCNEWS has learned. A team of 15 FBI agents and support staff, including evidence recovery teams, began searching the Los Alamos, N.M., landfill on Nov. 28…… Wearing special suits to guard against hazardous waste, they used a backhoe, a bulldozer and their own hands to search for the tapes, which contained restricted data on the nation's nuclear arsenal…….. The Los Alamos landfill has a special section just for lab trash, which the FBI cordoned off. The searchers dug down through the layers and, according to two Justice Department officials, have so far retrieved several tapes…….The tapes have been shipped to the FBI lab where experts are trying to determine if they are indeed the coveted Lee tapes, and agents are digging for more. Agents hope to account for up to 17 missing tapes. ……"

The Guardian 12/2/00 Martin Kettle "….. Clad in white body suits and pink face masks, they hunt through 50-acres-worth of rubbish discarded by the people of New Mexico. …… But this is no ordinary team of sanitation workers, they are FBI agents. They are rummaging by hand through a snow-covered mountain of waste at the Los Alamos county landfill in the hope of finding up to ten pocket-sized plastic data storage tapes thrown away more than a year ago. …..They allegedly contain secrets of the American nuclear weapons programme. ……..The tapes, believed to be buried in around 5,000 tonnes of landfill, are a vital part of the three-year investigation into allegations that the Taiwanese-born American nuclear physicist, Wen Ho Lee, was spying for the Chinese. ……"

AP via Newsday.com 11/29/00 David Pace "…..Already shaken by security lapses, the Energy Department is now acknowledging that 15 percent of classified documents mailed from three government nuclear laboratories last year went to addresses not approved to receive such material. ….. Department officials insist the errant mailings, disclosed in a new report from the agency's inspector general, did not compromise security and that the problem has been fixed. …….. But that assessment was challenged Wednesday by the Senate Intelligence Committee chairman. ''They don't know that,'' said Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala. ''You can rationalize, justify just about anything, but at the end of the day, you don't know what might have been lost. You have to fear the worst in a situation like that.'' ......The report said the mailings to unauthorized addresses were discovered in May, shortly after two computer disks containing nuclear secrets disappeared from the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico. The disks reappeared three months later behind a copying machine at the lab. ….."

San Jose Mercury News 11/29/00 Dan Stober "….. Ending a mystery at the heart of the biggest espionage case in a generation, Wen Ho Lee has told the FBI he dumped several tapes full of nuclear secrets into the garbage at the Los Alamos National Laboratory nearly two years ago, the Mercury News has learned. …… FBI agents Tuesday were searching for the computer data tapes in the 50-acre, snow-covered landfill at the New Mexico weapons lab where the nuclear scientist had worked for more than 20 years. ……In secret debriefing sessions with the FBI, which were part of his plea bargain, Lee has said that he tossed the tapes into a dumpster at the lab in January 1999 and that they never otherwise left the lab or were shared with any foreign country, according to what Lee has told the FBI. ….."