At long last, newshounds have tracked down and interviewed Rafid Ahmed Alwan, the Iraqi refugee and German intelligence source code-named Curveball (some say to signify his unreliability). Curveball was the source of the US claim that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destructions.
John Goetz and Bob Drogin reported from Nuremberg, Germany:
Alwan's fanciful accounts to BND officers were echoed in his tall tales to friends and co-workers. In early 2002, a year before the war, he told co-workers at the Burger King that he spied for Iraqi intelligence and would report any fellow Iraqi worker who criticized Hussein's regime.
They couldn't decide if he was dangerous or crazy.
"During breaks, he told stories about what a big man he was in Baghdad," said Hamza Hamad Rashid, who remembered an odd scene with the pudgy Alwan in his too-tight Burger King uniform praising Hussein in the home of der Whopper. "But he always lied. We never believed anything he said."
Another Iraqi friend, Ghazwan Adnan, remembers laughing when he applied for a job at a local Princess Garden Chinese Restaurant and discovered Alwan washing dishes in the back while claiming to be "a big deal" in Iraq. "How could America believe such a person?"
But an unrepentant Alwan is unfazed. "Everything I said was true," he said. "And everything that's been written about me is wrong. It's all wrong. The main thing is, I'm an honest man."
Link (Photo: Der Spiegel)