FAS | Secrecy | Congress ||| Index | Search | Join FAS

Congressional Record: May 16, 2001 (House)
Page H2253-H2255

                           NATIONAL SECURITY

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under a previous order of the House, the 
gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Weldon) is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. WELDON of Pennsylvania. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to share with 
my colleagues two items of concern relative to our national security. 
First of all, about this time last year, we heard a lot of ranting and 
raving in this Chamber and on national TV, allegations of massive fraud 
in our missile testing program. In fact, Mr. Speaker, 53 of our 
colleagues signed a letter to the FBI demanding an investigation of a 
fraud that was alleged by an MIT professor. The MIT professor said 
there was abuse, there was waste, that the Defense Department 
deliberately lied and so did TRW.
  We said let us get to the bottom because the investigation of this 
issue was done before. We have not heard anything from those 53 of our 
colleagues, Mr. Speaker, but a front page story in Bloomberg Press by 
Tony Capaccio cites the FBI in February throwing the whole thing out, 
saying it was nothing but a bunch of hogwash.
  Mr. Speaker, I include for the Record the Bloomberg news story, ``FBI 
Clears TRW of Fraud Charge in Missile Defense Test,'' and the actual 
FBI document. The Department of Defense has been completely exonerated. 
For those 53 colleagues and for Ted Postol, I think you owe the 
Department of Defense an apology.

[[Page H2254]]

           [From Bloomberg.com: Top Financial News, May 2001]

      FBI Clears TRW Inc. of Fraud Charge in Missile Defense Test

                           (By Tony Capaccio)

       Washington, May 4, (Bloomberg)--The Federal Bureau of 
     Investigation cleared TRW Inc., of allegations it manipulated 
     the test results in a program for the U.S. missile defense 
     system, according to a government document.
       It's the second time the allegation has been dismissed. A 
     1999 review by the Justice and Defense departments in a 
     separate whistleblower lawsuit dealing with the same charge 
     also found no basis for fraud in TRW's testing.
       Last June, 53 members of the U.S. Congress asked the FBI to 
     investigate charges by Massachusetts Institute of Technology 
     professor Theodore Postol that TRW and Pentagon officials 
     committed ``fraud and cover-up,'' by tampering with the 
     results of program's first test flight to conceal that 
     company's warhead can't distinguish between decoys and the 
     real thing.
       Postol and another antimissile critic, Dr. Nira Schwartz, 
     alleged that TRW and the Pentagon manipulated the results of 
     a June 1997 flight test. Military and TRW officials said the 
     company's warhead succeeded.
       Postol and Schwartz claimed the data was manipulated to 
     indicate success after the test failed. The test was 
     conducted in a competition between TRW and Raytheon Co., 
     which TRW eventually lost. Their charges were aired in March 
     and June 2000 front page New York Times articles that became 
     the basis for the congressional request and fodder for arms 
     control critics.
       The FBI closed the case in late February, saying Postol's 
     charges were ``a scientific dispute and Postol's attempts to 
     raise it to the level of criminal conduct had no basis in 
       The FBI's action removes a cloud over the missile defense 
     program just as the Bush administration presses ahead with 
     plans to expand it.
       A spokesman for TRW said the company hadn't been told of 
     the finding and is ``delighted'' if it's true. Both Postol 
     and Rep. Dennis Kucinich, an Ohio Democrat who organized the 
     congressional opposition, said they too were unaware.

                               trw's role

       TRW is a top subcontractor on the National Missile Defense 
     program managed by Boeing Co. TRW provides the command and 
     control system, or electronic brains, that receive and 
     process target information to missile interceptors carrying 
     Raytheon Co. hit-to-kill warheads.
       The TRW system has performed well in the three missile 
     intercept tests to date, though two of them ended in failure 
     after glitches in technology unrelated to the basic system.
       Postol argues the Pentagon's system is fundamentally flawed 
     and is incapable of distinguishing decoys from real warheads. 
     He alleged the Pentagon watered down its decoy testing, 
     substituting simpler and fewer decoys that were easier for 
     the warhead to recognize. The Pentagon has acknowledged 
     shortcomings in its decoy testing and says it plans 
       ``The program needs to ensure the ability of the system to 
     deal with likely countermeasures,'' Pentagon program manager 
     Army Gen. Willie Nance wrote in an April 12 review.
       `No Federal Violation'
       ``The investigation failed to disclose evidence that a 
     federal violation has been committed,'' the FBI said in a 
     February 26 memo to the Justice Department, ``Since all 
     logical investigation has been completed, this matter is 
     being closed.''
       The allegation was first made by Schwartz in an April 1996 
     False Claims Act whistleblower suit. Schwartz was a senior 
     staff engineer who worked on the project for 40 hours, 
     according to TRW. The federal government declined to join her 
     lawsuit after determining there was no evidence to support 
     criminal charges. The case is pending. Schwartz would 
     received a monetary award if TRW was found guilty.
       Schwartz alleged that TRW ``knowingly and falsely 
     certified'' as effective discrimination technology that was 
     ``incapable of performing its intended purpose.''
       ``Dr. Schwartz's allegations were scientific in nature and 
     concerned false claims made by TRW regarding the data 
     obtained from the first test flight,'' said the FBI memo. 
     ``Postol expanded Schwartz's allegations to include criminal 
     conduct. Investigation revealed that Postol's claim that data 
     had been altered was unfounded.''
       GAO Review
       Postol said in an interview he was surprised by the FBI's 
     decision because he was under the impression that the Bureau 
     would wait to wrap up its review until the General Accounting 
     Office completed a separate non-criminal technical review of 
     the charges.
       The GAO review, which was requested by two Democrats, 
     Representative Ed Markey of Massachusetts and Howard Berman 
     of California, won't be finished until later this year.
       I am amazed the FBI would have done this without checking 
     with the GAO,'' Postol said. ``It looks to me that the FBI 
     was simply not interested in doing anything except covering 
     its back.''
       Kucinich, who organized the June letter that prompted the 
     FBI inquiry, said he hadn't heard of the FBI's conclusion.
       ``It is interesting that the day after the president 
     announced plans to spend billions more dollars on a missile 
     defense system, it's revealed that the FBI had terminated its 
     fraud investigation of the missile defense program--despite 
     plain proof this technology doesn't work and substantial 
     evidence suggesting that the Ballistic Missile Defense 
     Organization covered it up,'' he said in a statement.
       Kucinich was referring to President George W. Bush's May 1 
     speech outlining his plans for a missile defense shield that 
     will likely include the ground-based system.
       TRW spokesman Darryl Fraser in a statement said ``if this 
     report is accurate, we are delighted to hear that the FBI has 
     vindicated TRW for the years of hard work.''

[U.S. Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Feb. 26, 
                         2001, Washington, DC]

                         DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE

       In a June 15, 2000, letter to Director Freeh, Dennis J. 
     Kucinich, U.S. House of Representatives, and 52 other members 
     of Congress requested an FBI investigation into allegations 
     that the Department of Defense (DOD) covered up fraud 
     relevant to the experimental failure of testing involving the 
     National Missile Defense System. This anti-missile defense 
     system is designed to defeat nuclear warheads launched at the 
     United States by inexperienced nuclear powers such as Iran, 
     Iraq and North Korea by intercepting the warhead carrying 
     missiles in the air.
       Specifically the Congressional letter detailed allegations 
     by anti-missile critic Dr. Theodore Postol, a respected 
     scientist from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 
     that not only is the S50 billion National Missile Defense 
     System incapable of distinguishing between warheads of 
     incoming missiles and decoys, but the DOD and its contractors 
     have altered data to hide the failure. Dr. Postol also 
     contended that his letter to the White House, its 
     attachments, and all the information and data he used to draw 
     his conclusions of fraud and coverup, were derived from 
     unclassified material and were subsequently classified by the 
     DOD in an effort to conceal the fraud and wrongdoing.
       The Washington Field Office (WFO) of the FBI opened a 
     preliminary inquiry into allegations of fraud in the National 
     Missile Defense System to specifically address the following 
     items: (1) coordinate with Defense Criminal Investigative 
     Service (DCIS) and obtain copies of material alleging fraud 
     and coverup prepared by Dr. Postol; (2) address DOD's 
     justification for classifying Dr. Postol's information 
     and; (3) obtain details of a DCIS Qui Tam inquiry that 
     precipitated Dr. Postol's criticism of the National 
     Missile Defense System.
       WFO opened up a preliminary inquiry into allegations of 
     fraud in the National Missile Defense System on July 25, 
     2000. Contact was made with the DCIS who agreed to work 
     jointly with the FBI in conducting the preliminary inquiry. 
     WFO obtained a copy of Dr. Theodore Postol's letter to the 
     White House from Philip Coyle, Director, Operational Test and 
     Evaluation, at the Pentagon. Postol had sent Coyle a copy of 
     his letter to the White House.
       The Director of Security for the Ballistic Missile Defense 
     Organization (BMDO) requested a line by line review of 
     Postol's package when it was suggested that classified 
     material may be attached to Postol's letter. This line by 
     line review revealed that four pages of Attachment B to 
     Postol's letter contained previously classified data, and 
     Attachment D contained 12 previously classified figures and 
     one classified table. All this material had been previously 
     classified and was not newly classified. Postol had obtained 
     this information from other individuals involved in a Qui Tam 
     law suit against TRW. Those involved in the Qui Tam suit 
     believed that the information they had was unclassified. A 
     good faith effort had been made by a DCIS investigator to 
     declassify a report that had been previously classified. In 
     the process, certain classified information was inadvertently 
     left in the report. Postol used this information believing it 
     to be unclassified.
       Postol's information was based on data he received from Dr. 
     Nira Schwartz, a scientist and former employee of TRW, a 
     defense contractor involved with BMDO. Schwartz had filed a 
     Qui Tam action in the Western District of California alleging 
     wrongful termination and false claims on the part of TRW. Dr. 
     Schwartz's allegations were scientific in nature and 
     concerned false claims made by TRW regarding the data 
     obtained from the first test flight, IFT-1A. Postol expanded 
     Schwartz's allegations to include criminal conduct. 
     Investigation revealed that Postol's claim that data had been 
     altered was unfounded. As to Postol's claim that the system 
     is incapable of distinguishing between warheads and decoys, 
     there is a dispute among scientists about the ability of the 
     system to discriminate based on scientific grounds. This is a 
     scientific dispute and Postol's attempt to raise it to the 
     level of criminal conduct had no basis in fact. A Department 
     of Justice civil attorney and an Assistant United States 
     Attorney in the Central District of California, both advised 
     that during the Qui Tam investigation, there was no 
     indication of fraud or criminal activity.
       The joint FBI/DCIS investigation failed to disclose 
     evidence that a federal violation has

[[Page H2255]]

     been committed. Since all logical investigation has been 
     completed, this matter is being closed.

  Mr. Speaker, I also want to point my colleagues to a story that ran 
just the last few days where we now have seen that Danny Stillman has 
evidence and material he collected that shows that the Chinese were 
aggressively trying to acquire supercomputers so that they could 
miniaturize their nuclear weapons. Up until 1996, China had no 
supercomputers. That was the year President Clinton lowered the 
standard and within 2 years China acquired 700 supercomputers. The 
information Danny Stillman allegedly has gives us the details as to how 
China uses the supercomputers we gave them to build miniature weapons, 
nuclear weapons to be used against us and our allies.
  Right now, the Department of Defense and Department of Energy are 
refusing to allow Danny Stillman's notes to be made public. I am today 
writing Secretary Rumsfeld and the administration to demand that these 
questions be answered. As a member of the Cox Committee that looked at 
this issue in depth, we need to know for sure what impact the 
President's decision in 1996 had to allow China to develop miniature 
nuclear weapons which they could use against America today.
  Mr. Speaker, I include for the Record the letter to Secretary 
                                                      May 3, 2001.
     Donald H. Rumsfeld,
     Secretary of Defense, Defense Pentagon, Washington, DC.
       Dear Secretary Rumsfeld: I am writing with regard to 
     today's article in the Washington Post entitled, ``U.S. 
     Blocks Memoir of Scientist Who Gathered Trove of 
     Information.'' As a member of the Select Committee on U.S. 
     National Security and Military/Commercial Concerns with the 
     People's Republic of China, I am alarmed and concerned that 
     the Committee was never informed about Danny B. Stillman or 
     provided with the materials he collected over the years.
       The article states:
       Stillman said Chinese physicists told him that they had 
     begun research on miniaturization during the 1970s, but could 
     not complete it because they lacked the computing power to 
     carry out massive calculations. When the Chinese physicists 
     got access to supercomputers, they pulled out their old 
     research, ran the numbers and designed the new devices.
       These supercomputers not only benefited the Chinese 
     advanced conventional weapons programs but also their weapons 
     of mass destruction programs. Now these weapons are targeted 
     at the United States and our friends and allies in the 
       Please answer the following questions:
       1. Where did the Chinese get the supercomputers?
       2. What other weapons systems did they use the 
     supercomputers on?
       3. Were export control officers made aware of the 
     importance of supercomputers to the Chinese weapons programs?
       4. When did the previous Administration learn of this?
       5. Why was Congress not informed?
       The article also states:
       In all, Stillman said he collected the names of more than 
     2,000 Chinese scientists working at nuclear weapons 
     facilities, recorded detailed histories of the Chinese 
     program from top scientists, inspected nuclear weapons labs 
     and bomb testing sites, interviewed Chinese weapons 
     designers, photographed nuclear facilities--and then, each 
     time he returned home, passed the information along to U.S. 
     intelligence debriefers.
       Please provide to me Stillman's trip reports, notes, 
     photographs, videos, the list of Chinese scientists and a 
     draft of his book. Along with a list of all DOE employees who 
     have visited Chinese nuclear weapons facilities.


FAS | Secrecy | Congress ||| Index | Search | Join FAS