Quotes from Democrats About the Threat of Iraq-Truth!
Summary of the eRumorAccusations that President Bush lied to the American people about whether there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq are counterbalanced by quotes from prominent Democrats about Saddam Hussein and weapons in Iraq. Most of these statements were during the debate over whether to use force against Iraq.
The Truth! There are several quotes. Most of them come during a time in the Clinton administration when decisions were being made about action against Saddam Hussein and amid concerns about weapons of mass destruction. We'll take them one at a time. "One way or the other, we are determined to deny Iraq the capacity to develop weapons of mass destruction and the missiles to deliver them. That is our bottom line."President Clinton, Feb. 4, 1998-Truth!
This was a quote from President Clinton during a presentation at the Pentagon defending a decision to conduct military strikes against Iraq. "If Saddam rejects peace and we have to use force, our purpose is clear. We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program. "President Clinton, Feb. 17, 1998-Truth!
Bill Clinton went to the Pentagon on this occasion to be briefed by top military officials about Iraq and weapons of mass destruction. His remarks followed that briefing. "Iraq is a long way from USA but, what happens there matters a great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face."Madeline Albright, Feb 18, 1998-Truth!
This is a quote from Albright during an appearance at Ohio State University by Albright, who was Secretary of State for Bill Clinton. "He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten times since 1983. "Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser, Feb, 18, 1998-Truth!
This was at the same Ohio State University appearance as Madeline Albright.
"We urge you, after consulting with Congress, and consistent with the U.S.Constitution and Laws, to take necessary actions, (including, if appropriate, air and missile strikes on suspect Iraqi sites) to respond effectively to the threat posed by Iraq's refusal to end its weapons of mass destructionprograms."Letter to President Clinton, signed by Sens. Carl Levin, Tom Daschle, John Kerry, and others Oct. 9, 1998-Truth!
According to the U.S. Senate website, the text of this letter was signed by several Senators, both Democrat and Republican, including Senator John McCain and Joseph Lieberman."Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process."Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), Dec. 16, 1998-Truth!
The text of this statement by Nancy Pelosi is posted on her congressional website.
"Hussein has .. chosen to spend his money on building weapons of mass destruction and palaces for his cronies. "Madeline Albright, Clinton Secretary of State, Nov. 10, 1999-Truth!
This was from an appearance Albright made in Chicago.She was addressing the embargo of Iraq that was in effect at the time and criticism that it may have prevented needed medical supplies from getting into the country. Albright said, "There has never been an embargo against food and medicine. It's just that Hussein has just not chosen to spend his money on that. Instead, he has chosen to spend his money on building weapons of mass destruction, and palaces for his cronies." "There is no doubt that ... Saddam Hussein has invigorated his weapons programs. Reports indicate that biological, chemical and nuclear programscontinue a pace and may be back to pre-Gulf War status. In addition, Saddam continues to redefine delivery systems and is doubtless using the cover of a licit missile program to develop longer-range missiles that will threaten the United States and our allies."Letter to President Bush, Signed by Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL,) and others, December 5, 2001Truth!
The only letter with this quote from December 5, 2001 that we could find did not include the participation of Senator Bob Graham, but it was signed nine other senators including Democrat Joe Lieberman. It urged President Bush to take quicker action against Iraq.
"We begin with the common belief that Saddam Hussein is a tyrant and a threat to the peace and stability of the region. He has ignored the mandated of the United Nations and is building weapons of mass destruction and the means of delivering them."Sen. Carl Levin (D, MI), Sept. 19, 2002-Truth!
These were remarks from Senator Levin to a Senate committee on that date.
"We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country."Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002-Truth!This and the quote below was part of prepared remarks for a speech in San Francisco to The Commonwealth Club."Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power."Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002-Truth!
"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction."Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, MA), Sept. 27, 2002-Truth!
Part of a speech he gave at Johns Hopkins."The last UN weapons inspectors left Iraq in October of 1998.We are confident that Saddam Hussein retains some stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and that he has since embarked on a crash course to build up his chemical and biological warfare capabilities. Intelligence reports indicate that he is seeking nuclear weapons..."Sen. Robert Byrd (D, WV), Oct. 3, 2002-Truth!
On the floor of the Senate during debate over the resolution that would authorize using force against Iraq. He was urging caution about going to war and commented that even though there was confidence about the weapons in Iraq, there had not been the need to take military action for a number of years and he asked why there would be the need at that point.
"I will be voting to give the President of the United States the authority to use force-- if necessary-- to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security."Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Oct. 9, 2002-Truth!
Senator Kerry's comments were made to the Senate as part of the same debate over the resolution to use force against Saddam Hussein.
"There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons and will likely have nuclear weapons within the next five years ... We also should remember we have always underestimatedthe progress Saddam has made in development of weapons of mass destruction."Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D, WV), Oct 10, 2002-Truth!
Senator Rockefeller's statements were a part of the debate over using force against Saddam Hussein.
"He has systematically violated, over the course of the past 11 years, every significant UN resolution that has demanded that he disarm and destroy hischemical and biological weapons, and any nuclear capacity. This he has refused to do" Rep. Henry Waxman (D, CA), Oct. 10, 2002-Truth!
Senator Waxman's contribution to the Senate debate over going to war.
"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biologicalweapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program.He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al Qaeda members. It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons."Sen. Hillary Clinton (D, NY), Oct 10, 2002-Truth!
Senator Clinton acknowledged the threat of Saddam Hussein but said she did not feel that using force at that time was a good option."Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime He presents aparticularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation ... And now he is miscalculating America's response to hiscontinued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real ..."Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Jan.23.2003-Truth!
In a speech to Georgetown University