For the first time, Iran has openly said it believes the infamous "smoking laptop" to be full of MeK terror group propaganda. Gareth Porter does sterling work tracking the laptop's provenance - which is to say US intel just about got it from a guy in a bar.
those documents have long been regarded with great suspicion by U.S. and foreign analysts. German officials have identified the source of the laptop documents in November 2004 as the Mujahideen e Khalq (MEK), which along with its political arm, the National Council of Resistance in Iran (NCRI), is listed by the U.S. State Department as a terrorist organisation.You're going to be hearing a lot more about this laptop's alleged revelations, as it's the single biggest remaining item of "evidence" in the neocon war-hyper's arsenal. But it looks very like any real information contained on it relates to iran's now-defunct pre-2003 weapons program and that data has been spiced up by the inclusion of propaganda planted by one of the links in the provenance chain.
There are some indications, moreover, that the MEK obtained the documents not from an Iranian source but from Israel's Mossad.
In its latest report on Iran, circulated Feb. 22, the IAEA, under strong pressure from the Bush administration, included descriptions of plans for a facility to produce "green salt", technical specifications for high explosives testing and the schematic layout of a missile reentry vehicle that appears capable of holding a nuclear weapon. Iran has been asked to provide full explanations for these alleged activities.
Tehran has denounced the documents on which the charges are based as fabrications provided by the MEK, and has demanded copies of the documents to analyse, but the United States had refused to do so.
The Iranian assertion is supported by statements by German officials. A few days after then Secretary of State Colin Powell announced the laptop documents, Karsten Voight, the coordinator for German-American relations in the German Foreign Ministry, was reported by the Wall Street Journal Nov. 22, 2004 as saying that the information had been provided by "an Iranian dissident group".
A German official familiar with the issue confirmed to this writer that the NCRI had been the source of the laptop documents. "I can assure you that the documents came from the Iranian resistance organisation," the source said.
The Germans have been deeply involved in intelligence collection and analysis regarding the Iranian nuclear programme. According to a story by Washington Post reporter Dafna Linzer soon after the laptop documents were first mentioned publicly by Powell in late 2004, U.S. officials said they had been stolen from an Iranian whom German intelligence had been trying to recruit, and had been given to intelligence officials of an unnamed country in Turkey.
The German account of the origins of the laptop documents contradicts the insistence by unnamed U.S. intelligence officials who insisted to journalists William J. Broad and David Sanger in November 2005 that the laptop documents did not come from any Iranian resistance groups.
Despite the fact that it was listed as a terrorist organisation, the MEK was a favourite of neoconservatives in the Pentagon, who were proposing in 2003-2004 to use it as part of a policy to destabilise Iran.