Monday, October 18, 2004

The Candidates on Iraq

From the Reston Connection coverage of a televised Reston debate (War Splits Congressional Candidates 10/14/04)

Lisa Marie Cheney:

Lisa Marie Cheney, said that going to war was the best decision at the time, considering the intelligence that was available to the president and to Congress. "The intelligence was flawed," she added, "but it said there was reasonable belief that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. And based on intelligence that everyone had at the time I think the right decision was made. If we knew then what we know today I think different decisions would have been made."
With better intelligence, she said, the United States could have tried to work out a diplomatic solution rather than going to war when it did.
"I think we could have really put the inspectors in there and had more of an interchange with the Iraqi people and the Iraqi government," she said.
Still, working with Saddam Hussein's government would have been difficult, she added. "We were in a war with Afghanistan and Saddam Hussein was praising the occurrences of Sept. 11."
Cheney said she was hopeful that the flawed reports on Iraq had motivated the administration to improve its intelligence gathering. "We will avoid making decisions in the future that may not be what we wanted to do."


Jim Hurysz:
James Hurysz, an independent candidate in the race, criticized the Bush administration's intelligence failures before the war but also had harsh words for the Unites States' handling of the post-war situation.
"How come they don't have fresh water? How come they don't have electricity? How come they don't have air conditioning?" he said. "I would ask, where is the progress here?"

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