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"The Cold Test: What the Administration Knew About Pakistan and the North Korea Nuclear Program": We Talk with Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist Seymour Hersh

StoryJanuary 28, 2003
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North Korea today accused the United States of planning a massive military attack and said the situation on the Korean Peninsula was "deteriorating rapidly."

The North’s state-run news agency KCNA said that U.S. forces in South Korea and the South Korean military have put together a contingency plan to invade the North and are preparing to put it into action. The plan includes attacks against the North’s nuclear facilities.

North Korea has frequently accused the United States of planning a pre-emptive attack, but today’s report was the most forcefully worded warning to date.

A piece by Seymour Hersh in the current issue of the New Yorker magazine begins, "Last June, four months before the current crisis over North Korea became public, the Central Intelligence Agency delivered a comprehensive analysis of North Korea’s nuclear ambitions to President Bush and his top advisors. The document, known as the National Intelligence Estimate, was classified Top Secret. Its distribution within the government was tightly restricted. The C.I.A. report made the case that North Korea had violated international law by secretly obtaining the means to produce weapons-grade uranium.

"But the document’s most politically sensitive information was about Pakistan. Since 1997, the C.I.A. said, Pakistan had been sharing sophisticated technology, warhead-design information, and weapons-testing data with the Pyongyang regime. Pakistan, one of the Bush Administration’s most important allies in the war on terrorism, was helping build the bomb." We are joined by investigative journalist Seymour Hersh.


  • Seymour Hersh, Pulitzer Prize winning investigative reporter for the New Yorker. His latest piece is "The Cold Test: What the Administration Knew About Pakistan and the North Korea Nuclear Program."

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