The Iraqis had over two decades to develop these weapons. And hiding them was an essential part of their program.
The weapons do not exist.
There was an absolutely closed mind
There was an absolutely closed mind. They would not look at alternative explanations.
I don't want to estimate. I want to have proof.
There is no alternative to the replacement of Saddam.
There is a lot of proof [supporting the U.S. case against Iraq] -- the proof of failure to allow inspectors in and failure to allow inspectors, once in, to conduct inspections in an unfettered manner.
It turns out we were all wrong, and that is most disturbing.
real danger [was] not so much that Saddam would pass along the secrets of weapons of mass destruction, but scientists and engineers in their desperate desire to better themselves, to keep their families alive, might well have sold these secrets.
We do, after all, have the case of A.Q. Khan, who, for 20 years, sold secrets of nuclear weapons production to countries around the world, ... It took about 18 years before we discovered it and managed to stop it.
And you know, almost in a perverse way, I wish it had been undue influence because we know how to correct that. We get rid of the people who, in fact, were exercising that.
I think that shows a level of maturity and understanding that I think bodes well for getting to the bottom of this. But it is really up to you and your staff, on behalf of the American people, to take on that challenge.
I would also point out that many governments that chose not to support this war - certainly, the French president, Jacques Chirac, as I recall in April of last year, referred to Iraq's possession of WMD.
Sen. Edward Kennedy knows very directly. Senator Kennedy and I talked on several occasions prior to the war that my view was that the best evidence that I had seen was that Iraq indeed had weapons of mass destruction.
I came not from within the administration, and it was clear and clear in our discussions and no one asked otherwise that I would lead this the way I thought best and I would speak the truth as we found it.