2001: The Italian government came into possession of half a dozen letters and other documents that purported to show Iraqi officials attempting to buy uranium yellowcake from Niger government officials. In the '80s, Saddam Hussein bought several hundred tons of yellowcake, which can be enriched in gas centrifuges to produce weapons-grade uranium.
2001: The Italians' evidence about Iraq and the uranium yellowcake was shared with both the British and U.S. intelligence officials.
FEBRUARY 2002: The CIA hears from Dick Cheney's office; he wants to know more. The agency sends former ambassador Joseph Wilson to Niger to investigate.
MARCH 2002: After...