IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF NEW MEXICOUNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff, v. Criminal No. 99-1417 JC/DS WEN HO LEE, Defendant.
I, Dr. Harold M. Agnew, do hereby declare and state:
DECLARATION OF DR. HAROLD M. AGNEW
1. I was the Director of Los Alamos National Laboratory from 1970 until 1979. I have been directly involved in research and testing of nuclear weapons for the last fifty years. I have had the privilege of advising Presidents Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon, Jerry Ford, Jimmy Carter, George Bush, and their senior staff, and the United States Congress regarding matters relating to nuclear weapons.
2. I have a doctorate in nuclear physics from the University of Chicago and have devoted my life to understanding nuclear weapons and to monitoring the development of nuclear weapons and nuclear energy throughout the world. My most recent work has included the following:
3. I am familiar with all aspects of U.S. nuclear weapons design and manufacture. When I was director of Los Alamos, I, along with many other scientists, oversaw the basis for the design of the W-88, which is a modern U.S. nuclear warhead.
4. I disagree with the statement that if the People's Republic of China ("PRC'") or some other nuclear power obtained the codes at issue here, it "would change the global strategic balance" and would jeopardize the security of American citizens.
5. 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. In reaching my firm conclusion, I am not expressing any opinion on the guilt or innocence of Dr. Lee, nor would I condone the passing of nuclear codes or any classified information by a United States individual to a foreign power, or the mishandling of such codes.
6. A brief summary of the reasons why the codes would be of little or no value to the People's Republic of China are set out in a letter I wrote to the Wall Street Journal which was published on May 17, 1999. I did not write this letter at the request of any third party, and I did not even know whether Dr. Lee was going to be charged at the time that I wrote this May 17, 1999 letter.
7. To fully understand why the codes for the United States nuclear stockpile would be of very limited use to the People's Republic of China or any other foreign country with a nuclear arsenal, one must understand that the PRC and the former Soviet Union have developed their own codes for the design of nuclear weapons. These nuclear weapons were tested by the PRC and the former Soviet Union from 1949 until 1996, using various techniques. The Soviet union and the PRC developed codes tailored specifically for the materials, weapons designs, delivery vehicles and manufacturing capabilities that these nuclear powers possess. Thus, today the PRC possesses a nuclear capability based on tested nuclear weapons and its own existing codes. As I concluded in my letter to the Wall St. Journal, in my opinion, "no nation would ever stockpile any device based on another nation's computer codes." Nor would they place any weapon in their stockpile without a nuclear test.
8. In addition, it is unlikely that the codes in question would be used by any nuclear power. It appears that most, if not all, of the codes presently being refined and developed at Los Alamos Laboratory were modified after all of the current U.S. nuclear systems had entered our nation's stockpile. It is highly likely that most, if not all, of the revised and updated codes in question were never used in their present state to design an existing nuclear weapon that has been tested and stockpiled. Thus, the PRC or other foreign power should not assume that these codes were the exact codes used for existing nuclear weapons that have been tested.
9. Further, the present value to a foreign power of any code for U.S. nuclear weapons design was long ago diminished by the wide distribution of the underlying science and engineering of the United States' and other nations' nuclear design codes. This information has been widely available in the open literature.
I declare that the foregoing is my opinion and correct to the best of my knowledge and that this declaration was executed on May 27, 2000, at Solana Beach, CA.
Harold M. Agnew