World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Powell IVon CBS's Early Show with Harry Smith

Interview on CBS's Early Show with Harry Smith

Secretary Colin L. Powell
Washington, DC
September 8, 2004

(7:07 a.m. EDT)


MR. SMITH: Good morning, Mr. Secretary.

SECRETARY POWELL: Good morning, Harry.

MR. SMITH: You supported this war. You helped sell it to the United Nations and to the American people. Is the price in human life -- has it been worth it?

SECRETARY POWELL: Well, Harry, you know we mourn the loss of every one of these brave Americans who served their nation so well and they served their nation in the cause of freedom. In Afghanistan and in Iraq, what we have achieved is the removal of two terrible regimes that were sponsors of terrorism, that were dictatorships and that threatened not only their own people in the region but threatened us ultimately. And so to the extent that those regimes are gone and they're not coming back, it was a good cause in which these young Americans lost their lives.

MR. SMITH: But when we --

SECRETARY POWELL: The challenge before us now -- The challenge before us now is to make sure that that loss was not in vain, to persevere, to not grow faint, to recognize that we have challenges ahead of us. But an election campaign began in Afghanistan yesterday with 18 candidates in Afghanistan out lobbying and looking for votes. That, I think, is progress. In Iraq, we are facing a rather determined insurgency and we have to defeat that insurgency using coalition forces and increasingly built-up Iraqi security forces.

And we knew that this would be a difficult time. We said that once the transition to Iraqi leadership took place, the insurgents would come after that leadership and come after us. And we'll have to deal with it and we will deal with it.

MR. SMITH: Let me ask you this, though. So much of this war was based on "what if's." What if Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction? What if he has nuclear capabilities? Should a war be based on "what if's"?

SECRETARY POWELL: It wasn't a "what if." In our judgment, at the time that the President was making his decisions and at the time that we were presenting our case to the world, to the United Nations, the body of intelligence that we had, that our allies had and that the UN, frankly, had accumulated over many years suggested that he did have the intention and the capability to have weapons of mass destruction. And there is no doubt about that. What was not clear in, you know, in retrospect, was whether or not he actually had stockpiles.

But there was no doubt in my mind that a regime of this nature which had used such weapons in the past against its own people and against its neighbors, and retained that intention and had that capability, would eventually reconstitute stockpiles if they didn't have them now. And anyone who thinks that if Saddam Hussein had gotten out from under those sanctions, out from under the pressure that was being applied against him, had gotten a free pass on this, would not have returned to past behavior, I think is mistaken. And the President was not about to put the region and America at that risk.

MR. SMITH: All right. Secretary Powell, we thank you for your time today.

2004/948 [End]

Released on September 8, 2004

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>

ALSO:

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news