During the Cold War, we gathered information by listening to the Soviets, taking pictures of the Soviets, and we allowed our human intelligence to decline.
Gen. Tommy Franks told me the war was being compromised as specialized personnel and equipment were being shifted from Afghanistan to prepare for the war in Iraq - a war more than a year away.
I had earlier concluded that a war with Iraq would be a distraction from the successful and expeditious completion of our aims in Afghanistan. Now I had come to question whether the White House was telling the truth.
I voted no on the resolution to give the president authority to go to war against Iraq. I was able to apply caveat emptor. Most of my colleagues could not.
In my judgment, the greatest risks are international terrorist groups like al Qaeda and Hezbollah. The war in Iraq has taken our attention off those priorities.
The president, clearly as a result of the war and the afterglow of the war, is in a time of great attention.
This president has been reluctant to hold anybody accountable. No one was held accountable after September the 11th. Nobody's been held accountable after the clear flaws in intelligence leading up to the war in Iraq.
We ought to recognize that we have an offensive responsibility to take the war to the terrorists where they are. That responsibility has waned in the last year as military and intelligence resources were withdrawn from Afghanistan and Pakistan to be used in Iraq.
Yes, more than 100 Democrats voted to authorize Bush to take the nation to war. Most of them did so in the belief that the president and his administration were truthful in their statements that Saddam Hussein was a gathering menace.