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Cartoon found July 15, 2003

WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION

OR

WEAPONS OF MASS DECEPTION?

I encode, YOU decide.

A collection of MP3 sound bites and samples from the U.S. - Iraq War, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006

Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Myers, Fleischer, Powell.

***NOTE:  These bites are unaltered, edited only for size or content***

Disclaimer: The sound files are not neccesarily in response to the questions posted here.

2002:

Rumsfeld - Do you know anyone who has admiration for Saddam ? And is the Iraqi Regime engaging in the development of WMD? 2-12-2002

Rumsfeld - Known Knowns, Known Unknowns and Unknown Unknowns 2-12-2002

Dick Cheney - A prediction of liberated Iraq 8-26-2002

Dick Cheney - There is no doubt Saddam has WMD 8-26-2002

George W. Bush - Iraq is Developing Nuclear WMDs - Mushroom Cloud 10-7-2002

March 2003:

Rumsfeld - What is the task before us, does it involve finding the WMD and what will it look like when its all over? 3-20-2003

Rumsfeld - Who does Iraq belong to and how long will troops stay there? 3-20-2003

Rumsfeld - Who chose this war and what are its objectives and who owns Iraq? 3-21-2003

Ari Fleischer - Fears of the President 3-21-2003

Ari Fleischer - We know he has WMD 3-21-2003

Rumsfeld - Slices of War 3-21-2003

Rumsfeld - What was the cause of the humanitarian disaster in Iraq? 3-25-2003

Rumsfeld - Why did the U.S. invade Iraq? 3-25-2003

Rumsfeld - Does Iraq pose a WMD threat? Is the war an act of self-defense? And what is Saddam's regime responsible for and is it pursuing more WMD? 3-25-2003

Rumsfeld - Does the U.S. value human life? 3-28-2003

Rumsfeld - How will Iraqis react to US presence and is the U.S. there to occupy Iraq? 3-28-2003

Rumsfeld - How will the Iraqis see the use of force and will the U.S. occupy Iraq? 3-28-2003

Rumsfeld - Do you need to kill 1000's of Iraqis to remove Saddam from power? 3-28-2003

April 2003:

Rumsfeld - Speaking of WMD, How Important is it to find them? (full) 4-9-2003

Rumsfeld - Is it important to find the WMD? 4-9-2003

Rumsfeld - Is the U.S. going to occupy Iraq and does the U.S. seek out other countries' wealth? 4-9-2003

Rumsfeld - closing comments 4-9-2003

Rumsfeld - Do Iraqis have respect for the bombing of their own country? 4-9-2003

Dick Cheney - Iraq will be disarmed of its WMD? 4-9-2003

Ari Fleischer - Questions about WMD 4-10-2003

Rumsfeld - How does the looting in Iraq compare to riots that have taken place in America? Does the U.S. military know what it is doing? And is freedom untidy? 4-11-2003

George W. Bush's Carrier Speech - May 1, 2003:

Can you fight a war without civilian casualties?

Can you remove the tragedy from war?

Does the liberation of Iraq help in the War on Terror?

How do you deal with the enemy?

How does war create peace?

How long will it take to liberate Iraq?

How long will the War on Terror take?

How will you decide which country to invade next?

Is the US more secure and is Iraq free?

Is the war in Iraq over and did we win?

Is war really your last resort?

Tell us about September 11.

Tell us about the neverending War on Terror.

Was Saddam an ally with Al-Qaida?

What about the dead US soldiers, will they ever be reunited with their family?

What are we doing in Iraq now that the war is over and does it involve looking for WMD?

What are we doing in Iraq now that the war is over?

What are you certain of when it comes to WMD?

What do Americans want after a battle?

What do Iraqis see when they look at our army?

What do terrorists want?

What does Iraq have to do with September 11?

What does the US stand for?

What is the exit strategy in Iraq?

What is your strategy in the War on Terror?

What were the soldiers doing when they died in Iraq?

Where are we committed to freedom?

Who should fear war more, the guilty or the innocent?

Why did we invade Iraq and does war create peace?

June 2003:

Rumsfeld - Does Iraq Have Nuclear WMDS - Fact Number 1 (6- 24-2003)

Rumsfeld - The Transition to Democracy 6-30-2003

July 2003:

"There are some who, uh, feel like that, you know, the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is: bring 'em on. We got the force necessary to deal with the security situation." - George W. Bush, July 2, 2003, referring to attacks against U.S. forces in Iraq.

George W. Bush - Bring 'Em On

George W. Bush - Iraq - Bring Them On (full) 7-2-2003

George W. Bush - Iraq - Bring Them On 7-2-2003

George W. Bush - Iraq - How many days does it take to find WMD? 7-2-2003

George W. Bush - Was Saddam a threat and is your intelligence on WMD's current, or 5 years old? 7-2-2003

George W. Bush - Iraq - Saddam had WMD 7-17-2003

George W. Bush - Iraq - Does it matter whether or not you find WMD 7-17-2003

July 30, 2003 Press Conference with George W. Bush

Are you a sinner?

How close are we to getting Saddam?

How long does democracy take and do you expect Thomas Jefferson to emerge in Iraq?

Iraq is growing more peaceful, but...

Is a weapons 'program' a threat to U.S.?

Is it important that we killed Saddam's sons?

Saddam had WMDs

Saddam was a threat

The drumbeat to war and the economy

We will wage a war on terror against every enemy

We're on the hunt

What does 9/11 mean?

What happens when freedom spreads?

What is the threat of Saddam's Son's ghosts?

What will a free Iraq show to the world?

Where are we taking the fight and what happened to Saddam's Sons?

Rumsfeld : September 16 2003

Rumsfeld - How does one think of the "War on Terror" and why did we invade Iraq?

Rumsfeld - Regarding the search for WMD, how long is 4.5 months, and where is beauty found?

Rumsfeld - Is it natural to have US forces in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - Is it the job of the US to rebuild Iraq and is the current instability there caused by the war?

Rumsfeld (and reporter) - Was there a Saddam/September 11 connection?

Rumsfeld - What 3 things will it take to get the job done in Iraq and will there be setbacks?

Rumsfeld - What are coaltition forces doing in Iraq these days?

Rumsfeld - What is the end goal in Iraq and who does Iraq belong to?

Rumsfeld - What is the task in Iraq and who is making trouble?

Rumsfeld - What path are the Iraqi people on, and can you tell us about the puppet government which has been set up there?

Rumsfeld - What was the cost of 9-11 and how does that justify invading Iraq?

Rumsfeld - Where do you fight terrorism these days?

Rumsfeld - Where is the best place to "deal" with terrorists?

Rumsfeld - Who are you fighting in Iraq and where do they come from?

Rumsfeld - Why don't you bring the troops home and where might the next 'battle' occur in 'The War Against Terror"?

Rumsfeld - Is the role of US forces to occupy Iraq?

George W. Bush - October 28, 2003 Press Conference

A trick question.

Are the US military actions supported by Iraqi people?

Enforcing UN resolutions

How do the Iraqi people feel about the occupation?

How will you describe your foreign policy?

Is the invasion of Iraq justified by UN resolutions?

Is the US eager or reluctant to use military force?

Is the world safer today and why?

Tell us about Iraq

Tell us about Iraq, part 2

The lessons of September 11, the war on terror and Iraq

Was Saddam a threat?

What are terrorists trying to do in Iraq?

What do Americans think terrorists are?

What do terrorists do?

What do terrorists fear the most?

What does politics create?

What is best way to deal with terrorists in Iraq?

What is Iraq now?

What is the mentality of terrorists in Iraq?

What is the strategy for dealing with terrorists?

What is the strategy in Iraq?

What is the strategy of the terrorists in Iraq?

When is military action taken?

Why do Iraqis blow themselves up?

Why is Iraq dangerous and what is the exit strategy?

Why is it dangerous in Iraq?

Donald Rumsfeld press conference December 2003

Rumsfeld - Where are the WMD and does Saddam know where they are?

Rumsfeld - The war on terror continues

Richard Myers and Donald Rumsfeld press conference April 7, 2004

Myers - Does fear and intimidation work in Iraq?

Myers - Is fear and intimidation alive in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - Are more troops headed to Iraq?

Rumsfeld - Do you expect increased attacks?

Rumsfeld - How are things going in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - How long will the U.S. stay in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - How many insurgents are fighting in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - How many Iraqis are fighting against you?

Rumsfeld - Is it helpful to meddle in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - What are people who have been helpful and what can you tell us about memory?

Rumsfeld - What are terrorists threatened by?

Rumsfeld - What do Iraqis want?

Rumsfeld - What do Iraqs seek?

Rumsfeld - What do the Iraqi people have to decide and whose country is it anyway?

Rumsfeld - What do the Iraqis have to do?

Rumsfeld - Whats the plan for Fallujah?

Rumsfeld - When do you take military action?

Rumsfeld - Where are we taking the battle?

Rumsfeld - Who dies more often in Iraq:  Americans or Iraqis?

 

President George W. Bush Speaks at VFW Convention, August 16, 2004

Before September the 11th, the ruler of Iraq was a sworn enemy of America. He was defying the world. He was firing weapons at American pilots who were enforcing the world's sanctions. He had pursued and he had used weapons of mass destruction. He had harbored terrorists. He invaded his neighbors. He subsidized the families of suicide bombers. He murdered tens of thousands of his own citizens. He was a source of instability in the world's most volatile region. He was a threat.

One of the lessons of September the 11th, a lesson this nation must never forget, is that we must deal with threats before they fully materialize.  I remembered what Saddam Hussein was like; I looked at the intelligence. I called upon Congress to remember his history and look at the intelligence. I thought it was important to bring Congress, get their opinion on the subject of Saddam Hussein. So members of both political parties, including my opponent, looked at the same intelligence and came to the same conclusion that I came to: Saddam Hussein was a threat. I went to the United Nations; the U.N. Security Council looked at the intelligence and came to the same conclusion, Saddam Hussein was a threat. As a matter of fact, they passed a resolution, 15 to nothing, which said to Saddam: disclose, disarm, or face serious consequences. As he had for the past 12 years, he refused to comply. He ignored the demands of the free world. He systematically deceived the weapons inspectors.

So I had a choice to make: either forget the lessons of September the 11th and trust a madman, or take action to defend America. Given that choice, I will defend our country every time.

Even though we did not find the stockpiles that we thought we would find, Saddam Hussein had the capability to make weapons of mass destruction, and he could have passed that capability on to our enemy, to the terrorists. It is not a risk, after September the 11th, that we could afford to take. Knowing what I know today, I would have taken the same action. America and the world are safer because Saddam Hussein sits in a prison cell.
 

source:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2004/08/20040816-12.html

 

Donald Rumsfeld interview on PBS August 17 2004

Rumsfeld - Can anyone be in a war and like it, and what is war like?

Rumsfeld - Can you describe the puppet government in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - Did you anticipate the resistance and does fear and intimidation work?

Rumsfeld - Tell us about Muqtada al-Sadr and his militia and what is going to be done about him?

Rumsfeld - Tell us about the US relationship with their Iraqi puppets.

Rumsfeld - What is Iraq like these days?

Rumsfeld - What is the goal in Iraq and is there a chance of it happening?

Rumsfeld - When Is a military solution the worst solution?

George W. Bush at the 2004 Republican National Convention, September 2, 2004

George W. Bush - Do you have any flaws and when did you notice them?

George W. Bush - How do wars of 'liberation' create peace and will it work?

George W. Bush - How do wars of 'liberation' create safety?

George W. Bush - How do wars of 'liberation' create security and peace?

George W. Bush - How do wars of 'liberation' help us keep the peace?

George W. Bush - Is the United Sates being threatened by Iraqi terrorists?

George W. Bush - Is the world safer now?

George W. Bush - Is the world safer today?

George W. Bush - Tell our armed forces how war creates justice and peace?

George W. Bush - Tell our Armed forces what they are doing and is America safer?

George W. Bush - Tell our armed forces what they did for Iraqis.

George W. Bush - Tell us about Iraq and the puppet government that has been set up there.

George W. Bush - What did you see in Saddam?

George W. Bush - What do terrorists know?

George W. Bush - What does Sept. 11 require and are we in any danger?

George W. Bush - What have you learned about violating the US Constitution which clearly states that only congress has the power to declare war?

George W. Bush - The US Constiution is clear that only congress has the power to declare war. Did you violate your oath of office by making this decision yourself?

George W. Bush - What is the plan for Iraq and what is the exit strategy?

George W. Bush - What is the wisest use of American strength?

George W. Bush - What were two choices you considered when it came to the decision to illegally invade Iraq?

George W. Bush - What were Iraq and al-Qaida up to when you took office?

George W. Bush - What are Iraq and al-Qaida up to today?

George W. Bush - What will this election determine, and is America safer?

George W. Bush - Why do people use terrorism and why should they be afraid?

George W. Bush - Why do we fight terrorism and are American citizens in danger?

George W. Bush - Why do we invade foreign countries and what would happen if you didn't?

Colin Powell at a hearing of the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee 13 Sept 2004

Colin Powell - Have you found any stockpiles of WMD in Iraq?

Colin Powell - What did you know about Iraq's stockpiles of WMD?

George W. Bush - October 7, 2004:

George W. Bush - There are no WMD in Iraq - confirmed.

George W. Bush - The WMD intelligence was wrong.

George W. Bush - Did Saddam have weapons programs or just intentions to restart them?

George W. Bush - Even knowing there are no WMD in Iraq, was the invasion right and is America safer?

George W. Bush - Looking forward to better WMD intelligence.

George W. Bush - Was Saddam a threat, what is the 9-11 connection and are we safer?

George W. Bush - What did Saddam have, even if he didn't have any WMD?

George W. Bush - Will the intelligence you use in the future be better than the intelligence that you got in the past?

George W. Bush - November 4, 2004 Press Conference:

George W. Bush - How is the training of Iraqi troops coming along?

George W. Bush - What is the objective in Iraq and how much will it cost?

George W. Bush - Why is the re-inavsion of Fallujah imminent?

Rumsfeld - November 8, 2004 Press Conference:

Rumsfeld - Do you pull your Iraqi puppet's strings or do they pull yours?

Rumsfeld - What are terrorists doing in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - What has to be done to make Iraq free?

Rumsfeld - What will victory in Fallujah bring?

Rumsfeld - Why are US forces attacking Fallujah?

George W. Bush - December 20, 2004 Press Conference:

A point about the January elections.

Gratitude for the troops.

How does Rumsfeld feel about the dangers in Iraq?

How long will US forces stay in Iraq?

Tell us about Rumsfeld.

Tell us some lies about what free societies do.

The complexity of the secretary of defense.

The reasons for the increase in troop strength.

Watching TV and achieving the objective.

We will succeed in Iraq.

What about Syria?

What are terrorists trying to do in Iraq?

What effect are suicide bombers having in Iraq?

What is at stake in the Iraqi election? What will the terrorists try to do?

What is the ultimate success strategy in Iraq?

What the objective in Iraq?

What will US forces be doing in Iraq?

What's going on in Iraq that people dont see on TV?

Will the terrorists succeed or fail and will Iraq become a Democracy?

Richard Myers and Donald Rumsfeld press conference December 22, 2004:

Myers - Recent attacks in Iraq.

Myers - The insurgency in Iraq.

Myers - The suicide attack in Mosul.

Rumsfeld - Does the war cause you to lose sleep at night?

Rumsfeld - Insurgents have been routed from Fallujah.

Rumsfeld - Intimidation in Iraq.

Rumsfeld - Tell us about Iraq.

Rumsfeld - The disadvantage of having presense in Iraq.

Rumsfeld - The future of Iraq and positive signs.

Rumsfeld - What is the task in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - What must we do in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - What would defeat look like?

Rumsfeld - Who are you fighting in Iraq?

Rumsfeld - Who's responsible for Iraq's security and whose country is it anyway?

Rumsfeld - Will Iraq ever be peaceful?

George W. Bush - Interview - Jan 14, 2005

'Bring them on' explained.

Is it your duty to spread freedom?

Is the war in Iraq worth the cost?

On dead soldiers and completing the mission.

On playing 'God'.

On solving the riddle of Iraqi terrorism.

What is the only way to defeat the Iraqi terrorists?

What is your hope for your legacy?

When will we leave Iraq?

Why did you decide to invade Iraq, was that decision based on bad intelligence, and is the world safer?

George W. Bush - State of the Union speech - Feb. 2, 2005:

George W. Bush - A new phase of work in Iraq

George W. Bush - Are we out of danger yet?

George W. Bush - Can we promote peace by threatening war?

George W. Bush - Do wars of liberation lead to peace?

George W. Bush - Endgame in Iraq

George W. Bush - Have Iraqis earned our respect?

George W. Bush - Is Iran seeking WMDs?

George W. Bush - Making america safer

George W. Bush - The war dead who died for our freedom

George W. Bush - Threats to Syria

George W. Bush - We aren't imposing our form of government on anyone

George W. Bush - What about the wounded veterans?

George W. Bush - What are terrorists opposed to?

George W. Bush - What does the whole world know now?

George W. Bush - What is the latest exit strategy in Iraq?

George W. Bush - What is the long term strategy?

George W. Bush - What is the new focus in Iraq?

George W. Bush - What is your intention and ultimate goal?

George W. Bush - What will victory in Iraq bring?

George W. Bush - Whom are the terrorists fighting in Iraq?

George W. Bush - Why are we fighting in Iraq?

George W. Bush - Why do terrorists fight in Iraq?

George W. Bush - Why don't you set a date for withdrawl from Iraq?

George W. Bush - Why will we succeed in Iraq?

George W. Bush - Why will we succeed in Iraq (part 2)?

George W. Bush - WMD concerns

George W. Bush - April 21, 2005

George W. Bush - What is the latest exit strategy from Iraq?

George W. Bush - April 28, 2005 Press Conference:

Are we making progress in Iraq?

Does war help create peace?

Hows the training of the new Iraq army coming along?

Is it easy to go from Tyranny to Democracy?

Is the Iraqi army able to recruit?

Tell us about Iraq and does democracy lead to peace?

What are the troop levels in Iraq?

What is the danger in Iraq?

What is the long term strategy against terror?

What is the result of a secure Iraq?

What's going on in Iraq?

What's going on in Iraq? (part 2)

What's the main problem in Iraq?

When will US military forces leave Iraq?

Whom are you fighting in Iraq?

George W. Bush - President Discusses Iraqi Elections, Victory in the War on Terror, December 12, 2005

George W. Bush - Did Saddam have weapons programs or just an intention to restart them?

George W. Bush - Who made the decision to invade Iraq?

George W. Bush - Who made the decision to invade Iraq (second guess)?

George W. Bush - Who made the decision to invade Iraq and was it correct?

George W. Bush - Was the intelligence on Iraq's WMD right or wrong?

George W. Bush - Address to Nation, December 18, 2005

George W. Bush - What did we find in Iraq?

George W. Bush - Was the WMD Intelligence right or wrong?

George W. Bush - The US Constiution is clear that only congress has the power to declare war.  Did you violate your oath of office by making the decision to invade Iraq?

 

George W. Bush - President Discusses Global War on Terror Following Briefing at CENTCOM, February 17, 2006

We saw a threat in Saddam Hussein. Obviously, this issue is one that has caused a lot of people to wonder about certain aspects, caused me to wonder about the capacity of our intelligence services to provide good intelligence. And that's why we're constantly working to reform the intelligence services, to make sure we get the best intelligence, because I thought there would be weapons of mass destruction -- and so did everybody else in the world; and so did people in the United States Congress from both political parties -- thought that there would be weapons of mass destruction.

The United Nations and the United Nations Security Council thought there would be weapons of mass destruction. After all, they passed a unanimous resolution that said, disclose, disarm, or face serious consequences. In other words, we worked the diplomatic front.

And so when Saddam Hussein chose war -- and believe me, he made the choice -- the hardest thing for the President of the United States to do is commit troops into combat. It's the last option, the very last option. Except September the 11th taught me, and September the 11th taught me, that we got to take threats seriously. And the world saw a threat. This man was harboring terrorists. He was on a state sponsor of terrorists list. I didn't put him on there, he was put on there by previous Presidents. He was firing at our pilots. He had invaded countries. He was a threat. And the world spoke with one voice, and said, disclose, disarm, or face serious consequences. And when the United States says something, it must mean it. And we said, disclose or face serious consequences. And when he wouldn't, he faced serious consequences. Removing Saddam Hussein has made America safer and the world a better place.

 

George W. Bush - President Discusses War on Terror, Progress in Iraq, March 22, 2006

And I saw a threat in Iraq. I'll tell you why I saw a threat. And by the way, it just wasn't me. Members of the United States Congress in both political parties saw a threat. My predecessor saw a threat. I mean, my predecessor saw a threat and got the Congress actually to vote a resolution that said, we're for regime change. That's prior to my arrival. The world saw a threat. You might remember I went to the United Nations Security Council; on the 15-to-nothing vote, we passed Resolution 1441 that said to Saddam Hussein, disclose, disarm or face serious consequences. We saw a threat.

I'll tell you why I saw a threat. I saw a threat because, one, he'd been on the state -- he was a state sponsor of terror. In other words, our government -- not when I was President, prior to my presidency -- declared Saddam Hussein to be a state sponsor of terror. Secondly, I know for a fact he had used weapons of mass destruction. Now, I thought he had weapons of mass destruction; members of Congress thought he had weapons of mass destruction; the world thought he had weapons of mass destruction. That's why those nations voted in the Security Council. I'm finding out what went wrong. In other words, one of the things you better make sure of when you're the President, you're getting good intelligence, and, obviously, the intelligence broke down. But he had that capacity to make weapons of mass destruction, as well. He had not only murdered his own people, but he had used weapons of mass destruction on his own people.

That's what we knew prior to the decision I made. He also was firing on our aircraft. They were enforcing a no-fly zone, United Nations no-fly zone, the world had spoken, and he had taken shots at British and U.S. pilots. He'd invaded his neighborhood. This guy was a threat. And so the world spoke. And the way I viewed it was that it was Saddam Hussein's choice to disclose, disarm, or face serious consequences. And he made the choice, and then I was confronted with a choice. And I made my choice. And the world is better off without Saddam Hussein in power.

The biggest threat America faces is that moment when terror and weapons of mass destruction come together. And if we ever suspect that's happening, we got to deal with that threat seriously. Committing our troops into harm's way is the most difficult decision a President can make. I'm going to meet with some -- two families of those who lost a loved one. It's my duty to do so. I'm looking forward to being able to hug them, weep with them. And so for anybody out there in West Virginia who thinks it's easy to commit troops -- it's hard. It's the last option of the President, not the first option. The first option is to deal with things diplomatically; is to rally the world, to send a clear message that the behavior, in this case, of Saddam Hussein was intolerable. And we did that.

 

George W. Bush, President Bush Discusses Global War on Terror, April 6, 2006

I saw a threat in Iraq. Not only did I see a threat in Iraq, the previous administration saw a threat in Iraq. Not only did the previous -- which, by the way, passed a resolution in the United States Congress that said we ought to have a regime change in Iraq. Not only did the previous administration see a threat in Iraq, members of both political parties in both chambers during my time as President saw a threat in Iraq. And the reason we saw threats is because the intelligence said that Saddam Hussein possesses weapons of mass destruction.

But it wasn't just U.S. intelligence that said that, there was -- the worldwide intelligence network felt like he had weapons of mass destruction. After all, when I took the case to the United Nations Security Council, the Security Council voted 15 to nothing to say loud and clear: disclose, disarm, or face serious consequences. That's not what the United States said alone. This is what France and Great Britain, China, Russia, and members of the Security Council said, because the world felt like Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, and after 9/11 it was abundantly clear that a state sponsor of terror, which is what he had been declared by previous administrations, and the idea of weapons of mass destruction, and the fact that he was at least, at the very minimum, a stated enemy of the United States of America posed a serious threat for our country.

...

I felt all along the decision was his to make. He said -- the world said, disclose, disarm. In the meantime, I want you to remember, he was deceiving inspectors. It's a logical question to ask: Why would somebody want to deceive inspectors? I also told you earlier that when America speaks, we got to mean what we said. I meant what we said when we embraced that resolution that said disclose, disarm, or face serious consequences. Words mean something in this world if you're trying to protect the American people.

I fully understand that the intelligence was wrong, and I'm just as disappointed as everybody else is. But what wasn't wrong was Saddam Hussein had invaded a country. He had used weapons of mass destruction. He had the capability of making weapons of mass destruction. He was firing at our pilots. He was a state sponsor of terror. Removing Saddam Hussein was the right thing for world peace and the security of our country.

 

George W. Bush, Interview with Larry King on CNN, July 6, 2006

KING: So there is no doubt, if you had it to do over again, knowing the WMDs weren't there, you'd still go in?

G. BUSH: Yes. This is -- we removed a tyrant, who was a weapon -- he was an enemy of the United States who harbored terrorists and who had the capacity, at the very minimum, to make weapons of mass destruction. And he was a true threat. And yes, I would have done the same thing.

Listen Here

 

watch here:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L4NjMoHtm2Y (question is at about 55 seconds in)

source:  http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0607/06/lkl.01.html

2006 Cable News Network LP, LLLP

 

George W. Bush, Press Conference, July 7, 2006

THE PRESIDENT: I have always said that it's important for an American President to exhaust all diplomatic avenues before the use of force. Committing our troops into harm's way is a difficult decision. It's the toughest decision a President will ever make. And I fully understand the consequences of doing so.

All diplomatic options were exhausted, as far as I was concerned, with Saddam Hussein. Remember that the U.N. Security Council resolution that we passed when I was the President was one of 16, I think -- 16, 17? Give me a hand here. More than 15. (Laughter.) Resolution after resolution after resolution saying the same thing, and he ignored them. And we tried diplomacy. We went to the U.N. Security Council -- 15-to-nothing vote that said, disarm, disclose or face serious consequences.

I happen to believe that when you say something you better mean it. And so when we signed on to that resolution that said, disclose, disarm or face serious consequences, I meant what we said. That's one way you keep the peace: You speak clearly and you mean what you say.

And so the choice was Saddam Hussein's choice. He could have not fooled the inspectors. He could have welcomed the world in. He could have told us what was going on. But he didn't. And so we moved.

source:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2006/07/20060707-1.html

 

George W. Bush, Press Conference, August 22, 2006

Q Quick follow-up. A lot of the consequences you mentioned for pulling out seem like maybe they never would have been there if we hadn't gone in. How do you square all of that?

THE PRESIDENT: I square it because, imagine a world in which you had Saddam Hussein who had the capacity to make a weapon of mass destruction, who was paying suiciders to kill innocent life, who would -- who had relations with Zarqawi. Imagine what the world would be like with him in power. The idea is to try to help change the Middle East.

Now, look, part of the reason we went into Iraq was -- the main reason we went into Iraq at the time was we thought he had weapons of mass destruction. It turns out he didn't, but he had the capacity to make weapons of mass destruction. But I also talked about the human suffering in Iraq, and I also talked the need to advance a freedom agenda. And so my question -- my answer to your question is, is that, imagine a world in which Saddam Hussein was there, stirring up even more trouble in a part of the world that had so much resentment and so much hatred that people came and killed 3,000 of our citizens.

You know, I've heard this theory about everything was just fine until we arrived, and kind of "we're going to stir up the hornet's nest" theory. It just doesn't hold water, as far as I'm concerned. The terrorists attacked us and killed 3,000 of our citizens before we started the freedom agenda in the Middle East.

Q What did Iraq have to do with that?

THE PRESIDENT: What did Iraq have to do with what?

Q The attack on the World Trade Center?

THE PRESIDENT: Nothing, except for it's part of -- and nobody has ever suggested in this administration that Saddam Hussein ordered the attack. Iraq was a -- the lesson of September the 11th is, take threats before they fully materialize, Ken. Nobody has ever suggested that the attacks of September the 11th were ordered by Iraq. I have suggested, however, that resentment and the lack of hope create the breeding grounds for terrorists who are willing to use suiciders to kill to achieve an objective. I have made that case.

And one way to defeat that -- defeat resentment is with hope. And the best way to do hope is through a form of government. Now, I said going into Iraq that we've got to take these threats seriously before they fully materialize. I saw a threat. I fully believe it was the right decision to remove Saddam Hussein, and I fully believe the world is better off without him. Now, the question is how do we succeed in Iraq? And you don't succeed by leaving before the mission is complete, like some in this political process are suggesting.

source:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2006/08/20060821.html

 

George W. Bush, Addresses American Legion National Convention, August 31, 2006

In Iraq, we saw a dictator who harbored terrorists, fired at military planes, paid the families of Palestinian suicide bombers, invaded a neighbor, and pursued and used weapons of mass destruction. The United Nations passed more than a dozen resolutions demanding that Saddam Hussein fully and openly abandon his weapons of mass destruction. We gave him a last chance to comply -- and when he refused, we enforced the just demands of the world. And now Saddam Hussein is in prison and on trial. Soon he will have the justice he denied to so many for so long.  And with this tyrant gone from power, the United States, Iraq, the Middle East, and the world are better off.

source:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2006/08/20060831-1.html

 

George W. Bush, President's Address to the Nation, September 11, 2006

On September the 11th, we learned that America must confront threats before they reach our shores, whether those threats come from terrorist networks or terrorist states. I'm often asked why we're in Iraq when Saddam Hussein was not responsible for the 9/11 attacks. The answer is that the regime of Saddam Hussein was a clear threat. My administration, the Congress, and the United Nations saw the threat -- and after 9/11, Saddam's regime posed a risk that the world could not afford to take. The world is safer because Saddam Hussein is no longer in power.

source:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2006/09/20060911-3.html

 

George W. Bush, Press Conference, September 15, 2006

The broader point I was saying -- I was reminding people was why we removed Saddam Hussein from power. He was dangerous. I would hope people aren't trying to rewrite the history of Saddam Hussein -- all of a sudden, he becomes kind of a benevolent fellow. He's a dangerous man. And one of the reasons he was declared a state sponsor of terror was because that's what he was. He harbored terrorists; he paid for families of suicide bombers. Never have I said that Saddam Hussein gave orders to attack 9/11. What I did say was, after 9/11, when you see a threat, you've got to take it seriously. And I saw a threat in Saddam Hussein -- as did Congress, as did the United Nations. I firmly believe the world is better off without Saddam in power...

source:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2006/09/20060915-2.html

 

George W. Bush, CNN Interview with Wolf Blitzer, September 20, 2006

And we took out Saddam Hussein because he was viewed as a threat. He was a state sponsor of terror. He had used weapons of mass destruction. He had invaded his neighbors. The decision was the right decision, and now the question is, will this country and our coalition partners have the will to support this new government, a democracy in the heart of the Middle East.

source:  http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0609/20/sitroom.03.html

 

George W. Bush, Press Conference, October 25, 2006

Over the past three years I have often addressed the American people to explain developments in Iraq. Some of these developments were encouraging, such as the capture of Saddam Hussein, the elections in which 12 million Iraqis defied the terrorists and voted for a free future, and the demise of the brutal terrorist Zarqawi. Other developments were not encouraging, such as the bombing of the U.N. Headquarters in Baghdad, the fact that we did not find stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction, and the continued loss of some of America's finest sons and daughters.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2006/10/20061025.html

 

George W. Bush, Interview with CBS 60 Minutes, January 14, 2007

"You know better than I do that many Americans feel that your administration has not been straight with the country, has not been honest. To those people you say what?" Pelley asks.

"On what issue?" the president replies. "Like the weapons of mass destruction?"

"No weapons of mass destruction," Pelley says.

"Yeah," Bush says.

"No credible connection between 9/11 and Iraq," Pelley says.

“Yeah,” the president replies.

“The Office of Management and Budget said this war would cost somewhere between $50 billion and $60 billion and now we're over 400,” Pelley says.

“I gotcha. I gotcha. I gotcha,” Bush replies.

“The perception, Sir, more than any one of those points, is that the administration has not been straight with…,” Pelley says.

“Well, I strongly disagree with that, of course,” Bush says. “So I strongly reject that this administration hasn’t been straight with the American people. The minute we found out they didn’t have weapons of mass destruction, I was the first to say so.”

“You seem to be saying that you may have been wrong but you weren't dishonest,” Pelley remarks.

“Oh, absolutely. Everybody was wrong on weapons of mass destruction and there was an intelligence failure that we’re trying to address. But I was as surprised as anybody he didn't have them,” Bush tells Pelley.

 

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/01/13/60minutes/main2358754_page3.shtml

MMVII, CBS Interactive Inc

 

 

 President Bush interview with Politico and Yahoo News, May 13, 2008

Q Mr. President, I'm going to surprise you -- there's a question from a user, Bruce Becker, and he asks: Do you feel that you were misled on Iraq?

THE PRESIDENT: I feel like -- I felt like there were weapons of mass destruction. You know, "mislead" is a strong word, it almost connotes some kind of intentional -- I don't think so, I think there was a -- not only our intelligence community, but intelligence communities all across the world shared the same assessment. And so I was disappointed to see how flawed our intelligence was.


Q And so you feel that you didn't have all the information you should have or the right spin on that information?

THE PRESIDENT: No, no, I was told by people that they had weapons of mass destruction -- as were members of Congress, who voted for the resolution to get rid of Saddam Hussein. And of course, the political heat gets on and they start to run and try to hide from their votes. But intelligence communities all across the world felt the same thing. This was kind of a common assessment.

So "mislead" means, do I think somebody lied to me? No, I don't. I think it was just, you know, they analyzed the situation and came up with the wrong conclusion.

 

- President Bush In a White House interview with Politico and Yahoo News, May 13, 2008

source:  http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=E3C6AE39-3048-5C12-001400CDBFDC3ECD

(Transcript courtesy of The White House, Office of the Press Secretary)

2007 Capitol News Company, LLC

 

 

 

Charlie Gibson Interviews President Bush
December 1, 2008

GIBSON: You've always said there's no do-overs as President. If you had one?

BUSH: I don't know -- the biggest regret of all the presidency has to have been the intelligence failure in Iraq. A lot of people put their reputations on the line and said the weapons of mass destruction is a reason to remove Saddam Hussein. It wasn't just people in my administration; a lot of members in Congress, prior to my arrival in Washington D.C., during the debate on Iraq, a lot of leaders of nations around the world were all looking at the same intelligence. And, you know, that's not a do-over, but I wish the intelligence had been different, I guess.

GIBSON: If the intelligence had been right, would there have been an Iraq war?

BUSH: Yes, because Saddam Hussein was unwilling to let the inspectors go in to determine whether or not the U.N. resolutions were being upheld. In other words, if he had had weapons of mass destruction, would there have been a war? Absolutely.

GIBSON: No, if you had known he didn't.

BUSH: Oh, I see what you're saying. You know, that's an interesting question. That is a do-over that I can't do. It's hard for me to speculate.

 

source:  http://abcnews.go.com/print?id=6356046

Copyright 2008 ABC News Internet Ventures

 

 

President Bush Attends Saban Forum 2008, December 5, 2008

 

It is true, as I've said many times, that Saddam Hussein was not connected to the 9/11 attacks. But the decision to remove Saddam from power cannot be viewed in isolation from 9/11. In a world where terrorists armed with box cutters had just killed nearly 3,000 of our people, America had to decide whether we could tolerate a sworn enemy that acted belligerently, that supported terror, and that intelligence agencies around the world believed had weapons of mass destruction.

It was clear to me, it was clear to members of both political parties, and to many leaders around the world that after 9/11, that was a risk we could not afford to take. So we went back to the United Nations Security Council, which unanimously passed Resolution 1441 calling on Saddam Hussein to disclose, disarm, or face serious consequences. With this resolution, we offered Saddam Hussein a final chance to comply with the demands of the world. And when he refused to resolve the issue peacefully, we acted with a coalition of nations to protect our people and liberated 25 million Iraqis.

source:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2008/12/20081205-8.html

 

 

 

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos, December 7, 2008

STEPHANOPOULOS: Is it fair -- is that a fair criticism of the Bush White House, particularly in the run-up to the war on Iraq? And could you have done a better job in airing dissenting views on the WMD?

RICE: Oh, we talked a lot about dissenting views. The idea that, somehow, within the Bush White House, there weren't dissenting views during this period of time is simply not true. But the intelligence didn't permit, frankly, much in the way of alternatives for the weapons of mass destruction. Now, the...

STEPHANOPOULOS: Although the dissent inside the National Intelligence Report from the State Department and others did point out...

RICE: But, you know, if you read...

STEPHANOPOULOS: ... that there were real questions about the intelligence.

RICE: George, if you read those -- go back sometimes and read that it was not a dissent on whether or not he had chemical weapons. It was not a dissent on whether or not he had reconstituted his biological weapons capabilities.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Certain dissents on nuclear program.

RICE: On the nuclear side, one had to look to the intelligence community to resolve and present to the president a unified view that was their best estimate of what was there.  But we have -- what the president has done as a result of that intelligence failure, as well as the intelligence problems of September 11th -- is to restructure dramatically the intelligence agencies with the director of national intelligence now, that really does bring those views.  I've read these reports now. They very much more clearly put forward alternative views. They very much more clearly take the information and say, what else could this say? The fact is that, before 2003 and the decision to take Saddam Hussein down, there had been a worldwide assessment and assumption that he had these weapons of mass destruction.

STEPHANOPOULOS: At least biological and chemical.

RICE: Well, and actually -- you know, this is somebody who had used them.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Karl Rove said this week that had the intelligence been accurate, the United States would not have invaded Iraq. Do you agree with that?

RICE: Well, I think that there were a lot of reasons to get rid of Saddam Hussein. Yes, weapons of mass destruction in the hands of this man was a real danger. But he had also invaded his neighbors twice, had tried to destroy Kuwait. He'd drawn us into war three times. He was a murderous tyrant to his own people. And, he sat in the center of the Middle East, this troubled region.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But given all that, Karl said, absent the weapons of mass destruction, it would have been much more likely that he would have pursued creative ways to contain it.

RICE: Well, we did pursue creative ways to contain it. One has to remember that we tried everything from enhanced sanctions, an effort that Colin Powell led when he first became secretary of state. We tried to get him out by other means on the eve of the war. But in fact, this seemed the course for somebody who combined weapons of mass destruction, which we believed he had, and his murderous tendencies...

STEPHANOPOULOS: So, you think we would have gone anyway.

RICE: George, one, you don't have that luxury. You don't. You know, it's fine to sit and try and play mind games, and to try to recreate -- and what might we have done here or there. But that's not the world that we were living in, in 2003. We were living in a post-9/11 environment, in which it was very clear that you shouldn't let threats multiply and collect without acting against them. We were living in an environment in which Saddam Hussein had been required time and time and time again to come clean about what he was doing. I remember Hans Blix saying, you know, this is -- mustard gas is not marmalade. You ought to be able to say what you did with it. And so, it's fine to go back and say to yourself, would we have done this differently. You don't have that luxury.

 

source:  http://abcnews.go.com/print?id=6412156

Copyright 2008 ABCNews Internet Ventures

 

 

 

President Bush Visits Troops in Iraq
Al Faw Palace - Camp Victory, Baghdad, Iraq December 14, 2008

THE PRESIDENT: I want to take you back to what life was like eight years ago here in Iraq. Iraq had a record of supporting terror, a record of developing and using weapons of mass destruction, was routinely firing at American military personnel, systematically violating United Nations resolution. Life for the Iraqi people was a nightmare, with Saddam Hussein torturing and murdering anyone who did not support his repressive rule. Iraq was a sworn enemy of the United States at the heart of the Middle East; the region was a serious threat to the us.

After the attacks of September the 11th, 2001, America concluded we could not tolerate a regime like this in a pivotal region of the world. I gave Saddam Hussein a chance to peacefully resolve the question as to whether or not he had weapons of mass destruction. You might remember, I went to the United Nations, where a body said: disarm, disclose, or face serious consequence. It was his choice to make. And he made the wrong choice. And so the United States military, with a vast coalition removed this man from power and the world is better off for it.
 

source:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2008/12/20081214-3.html

 

 

 

 U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney - ABC News interview with Jonathan Karl
 December 15, 2008

KARL: Now, President Bush recently said that his greatest regret was that the intelligence was wrong on weapons of mass destruction. Is that your biggest regret?

CHENEY: No, I wouldn't I understand why he says that. I certainly share the frustration that the intelligence report on Iraq WMD generated but in terms of the intelligence itself, I tend to look at the entire community and what they've done over the course of the last several years. Intelligence it's not a science, it's an art form in many respects and you don't always get it right.

I think while I would mention that as a major failure of the intelligence community, it clearly was. On the other hand, we've had other successes and failures. I think the run-up to 9/11 where we missed that attack was a failure. On the other hand we've had great success since 9/11 in terms of what the intelligence community has contributed overall to the defense of the nation, to defeating al Qaeda, to making it possible for us to do very serious damage to our enemies.

KARL: You probably saw Karl Rove last week said that if the intelligence had been correct we probably would not have gone to war.

CHENEY: I disagree with that. I think as I look at the intelligence with respect to Iraq, what they got wrong was that there weren't any stockpiles. What we found in the after action reports, after the intelligence report was done and then various special groups went and looked at the intelligence and what its validity was. What they found was that Saddam Hussein still had the capability to produce weapons of mass destruction. He had the technology, he had the people, he had the basic feed stocks.

They also found that he had every intention of resuming production once the international sanctions were lifted. He had a long reputation and record of having started two wars. Of having brutalized and killed hundreds of thousands of people, some of them with weapons of mass destruction in his own country. He had violated 16 National Security Council resolutions. He had established a relationship as a terror sponsoring state according to the State Department. He was making $25,000 payments to the families of suicide bombers.

This was a bad actor and the country's better off, the world's better off with Saddam gone and I think we made the right decision in spite of the fact that the original NIE was off in some of its major judgments.


source: http://abcnews.go.com/print?id=6464697

Copyright 2008 ABC News Internet Ventures

 

 

 

Vice President Dick Cheney, Appearing on CBS' Face The Nation,  with Bob Schieffer
January 4, 2009

 

SCHIEFFER: But how do you think we got it so wrong? I mean, we thought he had weapons of mass destruction and he didn't. We thought we'd be greeted with open arms and we weren't. What happened?

Vice Pres. CHENEY: Well, I don't look at it as we got it so wrong, Bob. I think we have in fact...

SCHIEFFER: We got a big part of it wrong.

Vice Pres. CHENEY: Well, certain parts of it...

SCHIEFFER: There weren't any weapons of mass destruction.

Vice Pres. CHENEY: Correct. The original intelligence was wrong, no question about it. But there were parts of it that were right. It wasn't 100 percent wrong. It was correct in saying he had the technology, it was correct in saying he still had the people who knew how to build weapons of mass destruction. I think it was also correct in the assessment that once sanctions came off, he'd go back to doing what he'd been doing before. Where it was wrong was it said he had stockpiles and he clearly didn't. So the intelligence was flawed. But you never have perfect intelligence in this business. You got to deal with the best you can in terms of making your decisions. The question of how we moved forward, you can debate about whether or not we had the right structure in place, for example. Was--would we have been better off with setting up a government in exile with exiled Iraqis and getting that organized and in place before we went in, and then turning it over to them? We made the judgment that if we were going to take down the government, we had an obligation to try to ... restore the best kind of system we could, and that was to give them a shot at true democracy.

SCHIEFFER: Do you think that perhaps you'd looked at the intelligence and saw what you wanted to see rather than make a real logical analysis of what you saw?

Vice Pres. CHENEY: No, I don't, Bob. I think if you go back and you look at what we were receiving as intelligence from the intelligence community going back to the very we were sworn in--I've seen a report, for example, it was one of the very first we received, that warned about Iraqis' weapons of mass destruction program. As a matter of fact, it was written by a guy who's been one of the public critics of what we did. He was responsible for the first report. We had reporting like that all the time we were there, right up until we went into Iraq. ... You know, it wasn't a matter just of us looking and seeing what we wanted to see. Everybody believed that intelligence. Saddam Hussein had peddled a notion to his senior officers ... and officials, they all believed he had weapons of mass destruction; the intelligence services of other countries. The Clinton administration that had been there for eight years before we had had exactly the same conclusion that we had, and we had numerous reports afterwards with all the studies that were done, the Robb-Silberman Commission ... the Senate Intelligence Committee, that said that there was no manipulation of the data, no pressure brought to bear on the analysts, this is what they saw. And they got part of it wrong.

 

source:  http://www.cbsnews.com/htdocs/pdf/FTN_010409.pdf

2008, CBS Broadcasting Inc.


Interview with President and Mrs. George W. Bush On CNN Larry King Live
January 13, 2009
 

 

KING: But do you ever get the feeling -- and everyone has some doubts about some things -- that, you know, if I was wrong, if Iraq was wrong and -- then they died in vain and I sent them?

G. BUSH: Yes, I don't think Iraq was wrong.

KING: No, but do you ever have a moment of feeling where it was wrong?

G. BUSH: No. I was -- what I was worried Iraq was going to fail, not Iraq was wrong -- that Iraq is going to fail. And that's why I put 30,000 troops in when a lot of people were saying get out. And the surges worked. And a young democracy in the heart of the Middle East has taken hold. And, obviously, there's more work to be done.

But Al Qaeda has been denied the -- you know, the base from which they wanted to operate.

KING: But when a boy dies, what is your feeling then?

G. BUSH: I'm sad as heck. Of course, I'm sad. I met with a lot of families of the fallen. And I know every night when a boy or a man or a woman has died. I know that. And I know the emptiness their family feels. I've talked to hundreds of families of the fallen. I also know that the families of the fallen don't want their politicians who are, you know, running this war to be doing -- you know, making those decisions based upon some, you know, Gallup Poll.

KING: How do you feel?

L. BUSH: About -- you know, when I hear or meet families of the...

KING: Yes.

L. BUSH: ...or meet families of the fallen?

Sad, of course. Very sad.

KING: But you don't ever say, maybe -- maybe George was wrong?

L. BUSH: No, I don't. I really don't. I mean, do we really think we wish we had just kept doing U.N. Resolutions against Saddam Hussein and that he was still there? I mean I just don't think people really think that. And I think the people of Iraq are out from underneath a regime -- a tyrannical regime and have the chance to build a country and build a democracy. And I hope that the people of the United States will stand with them while they do that.

G. BUSH: The other thing about this job, you don't get to do do- overs. Maybe you do if you're one of these guys asking questions. But the president doesn't get to do do-overs.

...

You make decisions based upon the information you have at the hand -- during the time.

KING: But when there were no weapons of mass destruction...

G. BUSH: I was discouraged.

KING: Were you angry at the people who told you there were? I mean, you didn't go inspect. You didn't...

G. BUSH: I didn't -- I was unhappy. And they're -- but rather than sitting around being unhappy, I decided to do something about it and to -- had a full investigation of why things went wrong. And then we reformed our intelligence services.  But guess who else was unhappy? Every single intelligence officer who thought there was going to be weapons of mass destruction. And it just wasn't the United States. You know, we -- see, what's interesting about history, people have short memories. And I'm not suggesting you do, but nevertheless, people do.  At the time, we passed a resolution in the United Nations Security Council 15-0 that said disclose, disarm or face serious consequences. That was that was what France and Great Britain and the U.N. Security Council said, including China and Russia -- to Saddam Hussein. And the reason why they said that is because we all thought he had weapons of mass destruction.

KING: So but some -- it had to begin somewhere with someone telling you there are weapons of mass destruction there?

Aren't you...

G. BUSH: Yes, the CIA told me. KING: The CIA -- are you angry at them?

G. BUSH: No. I'm disappointed, you know?

First of all, the CIA is vital in the war against these terrorists. There are still people out there, Larry, that would look to come and kill Americans. And in order to have an effective response, you've got to have an intelligence service that is motivated, that is funded, that uses their skills to help you determine the desires and plans of the enemy. The most important job I have had and the most important job the next president will have is to protect the American people from another attack.

source:  http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0901/13/lkl.01.html

2009 Cable News Network


Interview with Sean Hannity on Fox News
November 9, 2010



No decision was more controversial than the one in 2003 to launch a pre-emptive strike against Iraq.

 HANNITY: You bring everybody inside that decision-making. You talk about Tommy Franks. You talk about you guys have everything you need to win. And you get a yes, sir, they're ready to go. And you got to make that decision. You -- very interesting moment, you'll -- you write about leaving the Situation Room.

BUSH: Yes.

HANNITY: You knew you were putting kids in harm's way.

BUSH: Right.

HANNITY: And you said you walked upstairs through the Oval Office, slow step -- or a lap around the South Lawn. You said you said a prayer for our troops, safety of our country.

BUSH: Right.

HANNITY: The strength and -- to have strength in the days ahead. And there was one man that understood that -- what you were feeling. And you sat down at your desk, and you scrawled out a letter to --

BUSH: I did. Yes, to my dad. Yes.

HANNITY: You have the letter here. You told him something --

BUSH: No, I can't read it.

HANNITY: No. I'm not going to ask you to read it. You told me --

BUSH: I wouldn't make it through. It -- his letter to me. I can read mine to him. But his letter to me was such a touching response. And I -- I hope that the reader of the book will have a better sense of my dad, his compassion and his -- what it's like to be the father of the president.

HANNITY: But also that was the toughest decision you made in your life.

BUSH: Yes. It was, yes.

HANNITY: To make that decision.

BUSH: It is.

HANNITY: And your father wrote you back. He said, "Your handwritten note just received touched my heart. You're doing the right thing." And he said to you, "Your decision just made is the toughest decision you've had to make up until now, but you made it with strength and compassion. It's right to worry about the loss of innocent life, be it Iraqi or American. But you have done that which you had to do. Maybe it helps a tiny bit as you face the toughest bunch of problems any president since Lincoln has -- has faced." And your dad said, "You carry the burden with strength and grace." And he said, "Remember Robin's words, 'I love you more than tongue can tell.'"

BUSH: Yes.

HANNITY: This is your -- devotedly, Dad.

BUSH: I barely made it through when you read the letter.

HANNITY: Yes.

BUSH: Yes -- no. It's a powerful letter, because he's -- you know, it's just one of those moments that it's -- it's historic, because it's written by a former president. And it's -- it was -- it was a powerful moment for me. And -- and just hearing it read again is a powerful moment. It -- really expresses the love of a father to a son.

HANNITY: Because the book is decisions.

BUSH: Right.

HANNITY: You had to make a decision. You also concluded, "I strongly believe the mission is worth the cost."

BUSH: Yes.

HANNITY: And you talk about the cost. You met with a lot of the families -- the lost life.

BUSH: Yes -- no. Look, I mean, first of all -- the reader should get a sense that I tried to solve the problem diplomatically. Not just me, but Tony Blair and our allies -- that military -- the use of military was the last option that -- and I -- I believe -- and I said this in the book. I firmly believe it was -- that the -- the choice was Saddam Hussein's to make as to whether or not we used force.

I go on to describe that he made the decision to resist inspectors and to not be forthright, because he never felt we'd use force. And I say what more could I have done? He -- he --

HANNITY: Psychological profile of him told you that that wouldn't --

BUSH: Yes. Right.

HANNITY: -- that he -- that -- he --

(CROSSTALK)

BUSH: That's what he told the papers.

HANNITY: -- power. Yes.

BUSH: Well, no. The psychological profile was that -- right. That he wanted to --

HANNITY: Maintain power.

BUSH: -- maintain power. And therefore --

HANNITY: Yes.

BUSH: But it turns out he didn't think we'd use force.

HANNITY: Yes.

BUSH: And I'm not sure what more I could have done to make it clear.

HANNITY: You -- you -- you talk a little bit about WMD. "When Saddam didn't use WMD on our troops I was relieved." Then you talked about, you know, the absence of WMD stockpiles.


BUSH: Yes.

HANNITY: Frustrating for you?

BUSH: Unbelievably frustrating. Of course it was frustrating. It -- everybody thought he had WMD. Everybody being every intelligence service, everybody in the administration --

HANNITY: A lot of Democrats said it.

BUSH: Yes. A lot of members of Congress.

HANNITY: Yes.

BUSH: You might remember, and -- I think -- I think for the sake of history it's important to put in the book that prior to my arrival, Congress had overwhelmingly passed a resolution that -- for the removal of Saddam Hussein from power. It was embraced by my predecessor.

 


source:  http://www.foxnews.com/on-air/hannity/transcript/cable-exclusive-george-w-bush-reflects-years-commander-chief?page=10

Video link: http://video.foxnews.com/v/4412047/inside-bushs-decision-to-invade-iraq/

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NBC News Special, 'Decision Points', Matt Lauer interview with former president George W. Bush
November 8, 2010

 


LAUER (in studio): Continuing our conversation with former president George W. Bush, we come to the Iraq War.  No set of decisions he made was more controversial, or more consequential.  Now, he explains it all in his own words.

LAUER: In a conversation I think over lunch you had with Dick Cheney in the-- in the period of build up to the war in Iraq, he said to you, "Are you gonna take care of this guy or not?"  (laughter) First of all, I was surprised by the tone that Vice President would use with you.  Was it surprising to you?

BUSH: No.  I mean that's-- it's—we have a very frank relationship.  And he would give me his unvarnished advice. 

LAUER: Right.  But his comment leads to the question was Dick Cheney pushing you to go to war with Iraq, because--

BUSH: It didn't matter whether he was or not.  I am the guy who makes the decisions as to when we move.  I was trying to give diplomacy a chance to work.  And he might have been sayin', "Let's go."  But I said no. He says he eventually decided to go to war based on Saddam Hussein's defiance… and what seemed to be rock-solid intelligence.

LAUER: On the subject of-- of-- of WMD, George Tenet famously said, "It's a slam dunk."

BUSH: Yes. The intelligence.

LAUER: The intelligence is.  So by the time you gave the order to start military operations in Iraq, did you personally have any doubt, any shred of doubt, about that intelligence?

BUSH: No, I didn't.  I really didn't. 

LAUER: Not everybody thought you should go to war, though.  There were dissenters.

BUSH: Of course there were.

LAUER: Did you filter them out?

BUSH: I was-- I was a dissenting voice.  I didn't wanna use force. 


source:  http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40076644/ns/politics-decision_points/

2010 msnbc.com


 

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